Monday, September 2, 2013

The minor league vets

Alex Presley, acquired from Pittsburgh for Justin Morneau,
had three singles in his Twins debut.
The Twins' starting lineup Sunday had just one player (Brian Dozier) who hadn't seen some time in the International League this year. (Josh Willingham and Trevor Plouffe were there on rehab assignments.)

And yet it wasn't a truly young lineup. It was mainly minor league veterans.

Rookie catcher Josmil Pinto had two
hits in his major league debut, including
an RBI double in his second at-bat.
The lineup by ages and minor league plate appearances:

Alex Presley, 28, 3,096
Darin Mastroianni, 28, 2,599
Dozier, 26, 1,613
Willingham, 34, 2,242
Plouffe, 27, 3,564
Chris Colabello, 29, 3,474
Clint Thomas, 29, 3,098
Josmil Pinto, 24, 2,396
Doug Bernier, 33, 3,815

One player in the lot under age 26, and more than half have more than 3,000 minor league plate appearances.

The future, by and large, is now with this bunch. Remember, 27 is the most common age for peak seasons; 26 and 28 are the next most common. Remember too, major league stars seldom spend much time in the minors.

Don't take the broadcasters seriously when they talk about the youth of the Twins lineup. It will be young when guys like Miguel Sano, Eddie Rosario and Byron Buxton crack it. Those guys aren't here yet.

It's really not even an inexperienced lineup. These guys have plenty of experience — most of it in the minors.

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