Wednesday, August 31, 2011

On Morneau's head and the Arizona Fall League

Another injury in a
lost season for the
2006 MVP.
Justin Morneau dove for a ball on Sunday, had headaches on Monday and was diagnosed with post-concussion syndrome.


I don't doubt the description offered Tuesday by the trainer: That on one of the tests involved he tests slightly below baseline. I don't quarrel with Morneau's statement that what he has now is nothing like last season's problems, which cost him four months of play and really didn't clear up during the offseason.

I still see reason for concern here. The man dove for a ball and ran the bases aggressively Sunday, and he came up with a headache. He's had multiple concussions over the years, and that raises the possibility that he'll be increasingly more susceptible to them.

And that's not good for anybody.


Seven Twins prospects were named to play in the Arizona Fall League for the Mesa Solar Sox: Scott Diamond, Aaron Hicks, Brian Dozier, Cole DeVries, Chris Herrmann, Bret Jacobson and Bruce Pugh.

Chris Herrmann was a
sixth-round selection
in the 2009 draft.
Diamond is currently filling a gap in the major league rotation; in fact, he starts this afternoon. DeVries, Jacobson and Pugh are relief pitchers with live arms; they aren't particularly hot prospects, but they can't be ruled out.   

The best prospects are the three position players. Hicks is a real talent who is grinding slowly up the ladder; he had an up-and-down season in Fort Myers (High A), and his final numbers won't be impressive. I'm surprised to see him on this list, as the AFL is supposed to be for advanced prospects; I suspect he's a "taxi squad" player who'll get only limited exposure.

Dozier, a middle infielder, had a breakout year, and he may get a September call-up after New Britain's season is over. But I suspect the Twins will skip that to focus on further evaluating the likes of Trevor Plouffe, Luke Hughes and Tsuyoshi Nishioka.

Herrmann is a catcher/outfielder who is apparently capable at both defensively and has put up strong OBPs in a rapid rise to Double A. That's an intriguing skill set for a bench player on a roster with Joe Mauer splitting time between catcher, DH and other positions.

What's almost as interesting here are two important pitchers who didn't get named: Alex Wimmers and David Bromberg. Both had very limited innings this summer. Wimmers lost his command totally and had to have his delivery overhauled; Bromberg broke his arm on a line drive in April. I had thought either or both could be named to give them more innings. Perhaps the Twins have more extensive winter ball plans in mind for them.


Tragic number: 10

1 comment:

  1. What do you about shutting down both Morneau and Mauer for the rest of the year? Makes little sense to play them if they aren't completely healthy.