Thursday, September 8, 2011

Contemplating the future: Glen Perkins

Glen Perkins has struck out 61 batters in
55.2 innings —and allowed just one
home run.
Given the totality of the Twins collapse — and the expectations that they had opening the season — nobody on the team should be completely satisfied with the 2011 season.

One of the few who can be pleased with their individual season is Glen Perkins, who entered spring training a marginal bullpen candidate and emerged by May as the team's top set-up man.

But the lefty is showing signs of wearing down in these final weeks.

His ERA has risen by more than a run over the past month (1.45 after his appearance on Aug. 5, 2.59 after Wednesday's game). He hasn't had a clean (no baserunners allowed) outing since Aug. 22.

He spent almost a month on the disabled list in late May-early June, and he just sat for a week (no DL stint, if only because the roster limits are lifted in September) with forearm stiffness.

There has been some talk of the Twins letting both Matt Capps and Joe Nathan go and elevating the much cheaper Perkins to the closer role. My belief is that

  • Perkins is more valuable wiping out hitters in jams than he would be if limited to the ninth inning and
  • Nathan's going to stick around.

But it would certainly help Perkins' value if he snaps back into his midsummer form this month.

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