|Trevor Plouffe had|
a series of injuries
that limited him to
less than 350 plate
appearances in 2016.
In a related development, it was also the day the Twins released veteran third baseman Trevor Plouffe.
They also outrighted catcher Juan Centeno and lost slugging prospect Adam Brett Walker on waivers to the Milwaukee Brewers.
These moves opened three more slots on the 40-man roster, The Twins filled six of the seven vacancies with prospects: catcher Mitch Garver; outfielders Daniel Palka and Zack Granite; shortstop Engelb Vielma; and right-handed starters Fernando Romero and Felix Jorge.
Plouffe's departure is the biggest news, if only because manager Paul Molitor -- and Ron Gardenhire before him -- made the one-time first round draft pick a fixture in the middle of the lineup. He was always an ill fit in a key lineup role, with low on-base percentages and mediocre slugging percentages. He had made himself into a above-average defensive third baseman, but his varied injuries last year slowed his reaction to batted balls.
Presumably the new brain trust found little interest in Plouffe as trade bait, and the roster spot was deemed more valuable than the veteran. Certainly, with Miguel Sano's outfield venture deemed a failure last season, there wasn't an obvious role for Plouffe on the 2017 Twins. Sano's going to be the third baseman in Minnesota now.
Plouffe, who turned 30 in June, will land somewhere. I certainly don't wish him ill, but it was clearly time for him to move on.