Saturday, October 5, 2013

Notes, quotes and comment

Doug Bernier appeared in 33 games for
the Twins, with a slash line of
.226/.339/.283.
The Twins on Friday outrighted infielder Doug Bernier, who thus becomes a minor league free agent. This officially reduces the 40-man roster to 35, but the unofficial tally of 37 is more accurate, since it accounts for Wilkin Ramirez and Sam Deduno, who are on the 60-day disabled list.

This was certainly the most glorious season of Bernier's professional career: He got to spend almost three months in the major leagues after hitting .295 in a half-season as the primary shortstop for the Rochester Red Wings.

The Twins never really had a role for the 33-year-old — no matter how thin his bench, Ron Gardenhire always seems to have somebody who doesn't have much purpose sitting around — but I'll guarantee you, Bernier preferred that to playing every day in Triple A.

His removal from the 40-man roster was inevitable. It's possible that the Twins will seek to retain him as Triple A roster depth, but Danny Santana figures to be the primary shortstop in Rochester next season, and Eddie Rosario may be the primary second baseman if the Twins don't return him to the outfield or use him in a trade, and then there's James Beresford, who's considerably younger than Bernier, as a utility guy.

There may not be a place for Bernier in this organization. And at his age, it's not going to be easy to find a place to keep his dreams going.

Dusty Baker has managed the Giants, the Cubs and
the Reds into the playoffs over the years, but has
never managed a World Series winner.
---

The Cincinnati Reds surprised a lot of observers Friday by dismissing Dusty Baker as their manager.

Baker's been around a long time — he is 16th on the all-time managerial wins list — and even at age 64 he doesn't appear inclined to go into retirement. He still wants to manage, and I suppose somebody will give him a job.

But he's not a manager I'd be particularly interested in having run my team. Even discounting his often-bizarre statements about the game (such as his complaint that hitters who draw walks merely clog up the basepaths), his tenures have been marked by a rather hands-off approach to player behavior, and inevitably there are incidents that appear to be the direct result of players knowing there will be no ramifications for immature behavior.

Cincinnati and Washington are two clearly win-ready teams with managerial openings. Those kinds of jobs aren't often available.


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