Sunday, March 20, 2011

Fare-thee-well, Pat Neshek

Pat Neshek: Go
West, young man.
One more bullpen candidate gone: Pat Neshek, native Minnesotan and fan favorite, was waived by the Twins and claimed by the San Diego Padres.

The Twins put Neshek on waivers Friday, which was the day after he allowed two home runs to right-handed hitters. That probably popped his bubble with the Twins; getting righties out is supposed to be his calling card.

This, of course, eliminates a bullpen contender. It also opens a spot on the 40-man roster, which provides an opening for someone like Kyle Waldrop.

Addendum: Just to be clear— the Twins don't have to immediately fill that slot, and probably won't until they must.

If Waldrop makes the 25-man roster, it will almost certainly mean that at least one of Glen Perkins and Scott Diamond didn't — and if either of them don't, they'll be coming off the 40.

And there are roster flexibility advantages to having less than 40 men on the roster. Example: The Twins now have two catchers on the 40 (Joe Mauer and Drew Butera). Should either go on the 15-day disabled list, the Twins would have to move one of their minor league catchers to the 40 in order to put him on the 25-man active roster. Having an open slot makes that easy.

Addendum II: Neshek, according to the Pioneer Press, had an option left (contrary to what John Gordon said during Sunday's game broadcast). That the Twins opted to waive Neshek rather than option him out to Triple A is telling.

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