Thursday, September 12, 2013

Notes, quotes and comment

First base umpire Bill Miller gives Ron Gardenhire the
heave-ho in the fourth inning Wednesday. The
ejection meant Gardy missed the worst parts of
a really terrible game by the Twins.
Baseball America on Wednesday named Byron Buxton its Minor League Player of the Year.

No great surprise here, especially given the hoopla BA gave Buxton at midseason, but no small honor for the outfielder. He's the second Twins farmhand to win the award, the first being Joe Mauer in 2003.

BA's story on Buxton is here. A chat transcript with BA co-editor John Manuel about the player of the year process and other items is here.

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Mauer was reported Wednesday to have had a setback with his concussion recovery. The Twins still aren't ruling out his return to action this season, and I suppose it's possible, but I'll believe it when I see it.

In other catcher news with the Twins, Ryan Doumit has reportedly been told he'll not catch again this year. These last three weeks figure to be heavy on Josmil Pinto and Chris Herrmann, with a little Eric Fryer on hand to ease the burden.

Considering how gingerly Pinto was handled much of the season in the minors — he caught 74 games for New Britain and Rochester and DHed in 52 — amid talk of protecting his shoulder, it will be interesting to see how much the Twins use him behind the dish. This can be a very good training opportunity for him, with Terry Steinbach around to really drill into the nuances of pitch calling and receiving.

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The Yankees announced Wednesday that Derek Jeter is done for the season. Not just the regular season, but the playoffs also, should the Yankees get there (and as of now they wouldn't).

Jeter is 39, and he played just 17 games with a .190 batting average as he never fully recovered from last fall's fractured ankle. So this has all the signs of being the end of one of the great shortstops — except that he's not going away.

He said Wednesday he's not retiring, and Yankee general manager Brian Cashman agreed: "I haven't seen his last game. No one has."

And Jeter has repeatedly rejected reality to substitute his own. I'll believe he's done playing when he says he's done playing.

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