Saturday, April 26, 2014

Campaign reform

Chris Colabello, write-in
Voting (or ballot-box stuffing) for the All-Star Game formally opened Friday, and with the game being held in Target Field this year, the Twins were heavily involved in the promotion of this non-event.

One of the more newsier items tweeted out of the Target Field press conference was the unsurprising news that neither Josmil Pinto nor Chris Colabello are on the ballot. This is unsurprising because the ballot's nominees are decided before the season began, and neither was expected to get this much playing time. It took injuries to Oswaldo Arcia and Josh Willingham to get Pinto and Colabello into the lineup.

Right now, Colabello leads the American League in RBIs (27) while bopping .318/.355/.523, and Pinto's .224 batting average is spiked with 16 walks for a .400 on-base percentage. But a month ago, it wasn't clear either would be on the major league roster, much less playing regularly.

I imagine that a write-in push for Colabello is coming. I'm not sure if it will be as an outfielder or as a DH. I do know the Twins aren't going to have their broadcasters urge us to write him in as a first baseman.

And a lot depends, too, on how Ron Gardenhire handles the lineup as Arcia and Willingham return. (Arcia is to begin a rehab assignment this weekend; Willingham is further away from playing.) There's no obvious candidate in the left field-right field-first base-designated hitter-catcher nexus to sit, but Arcia is a more important piece of the future than most of the current regulars.

Such problems have a way of working themselves out, and I don't imagine Gardenhire's losing any sleep over it yet.

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