Monday, June 18, 2012

Catching Up, Revere, Dozier, and Other Notes

Hi. It's been a while. Nothing like a busy-at-work-busy-at-home lifestyle to put a dent in one's blogging ambitions. But anyhoo...

I have a few thoughts.

My thoughts on Ben Revere
How much fun has Benny been to watch lately? The plays in the outfield, the improved hitting, the smiling, the adorableness, the little chicken wing thing he does in the batting box, the plays in the outfield ...

I was excited about him last year, but this year I'm even more so. This is his year, and he's blossomed into a full-fledged big leaguer. Sure, his throwing arm still isn't stellar, but his outstanding range pretty much makes that issue moot. Nobody's perfect.

The thing is, every time Benny shows off how capable he is at being big-league outfielder, the closer Twins fans are to trading Denard Span. Denard's value as centerfielder and lead-off man is at an all time high. And there are plenty of contending teams that could use his services to help them toward the playoffs.

This season is already lost for the Twins, and they have many needs to begin a rebuilding project. And as much as I would hate to see him go, Denard could fetch some much-needed pitching prospects. Benny gives the Twins the confidence to move forward with that plan.

My thoughts on Brian Dozier
After a nice hot spell, Brian has cooled off -- both offensively and defensively. Ok, he's a rookie, and other teams probably have started figuring him out. It happens.

The Twins seem content to just let him be and figure it out on his own. I'm ok with that.

But it does make me wonder: why am I ok with Dozier hanging around until he works out the kinks, but last year I had run out of patience with Nishioka quite quickly? I don't really have a good answer. Maybe it's because Dozier has been a little better (.247 ba/ .263 obp/ .340 slug) through 37 games than Nishi (.228/ .291/ .260), but he's not recovering from a devastating injury either. And Dozier's fielding percentage through 37 games (.956) is worse than Nishioka's for 66 games (.961) (I couldn't find defensive game splits, so I couldn't see how Nishi was doing at 37 games). So, really, Dozier isn't a super huge improvement.

But why was I so quick to ship out Nishioka, but I'm still rooting for Dozier? I guess perception is a lot of it -- Nishi just looked lost and confused but Dozier has continued to look confident even while struggling. Also, Dozier did show some flashes of brilliance while I don't really remember seeing that with Nishioka. It could be that my patience was worn so thin last year that my standards are lower this year.

I don't know. But I believe Dozier will work things out and get back to that awesome player I saw a few weeks ago. I hope it happens soon.

Injury and Transaction Updates
6/14 -- The Twins placed RHP JP Walters on the DL with shoulder inflammation. No further word on his recovery timetable.

Lester Oliveros was recalled to take Walters' roster spot.

6/16 -- Lester Oliveros was optioned to AAA Rochester and Liam Hendriks was recalled.

I hope Lester didn't pack a whole lot.

1 comment:

Andrew said...

For me, the difference between Dozier this season and Nishioka last season is that, even though Nishi was technically a rookie in MLB, he was a seasoned professional baseball player (and supposedly the best player in Japan) who was expected to quickly adapt to baseball over here and play above replacement level. Dozier, on the other hand, is truly a rookie -- and you're right, it does help matters that he looks confident, even as he struggles.