Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Notes, quotes and comment

The MRI on Ricky Nolasco's ailing elbow found no structural damage:

So the Twins have put him on the disabled list and called up Chris Herrmann, catcher-outfielder. This gives them an extra bench player for the weekend series in Colorado, where there will be no DH (National League rules). It also thins out the pitching staff for a series in Colorado, where pitchers are known to struggle.


The debate over whether Nolasco should have told the Twins his elbow hurt or if the team should somehow have been more proactive reminded me of 1988, when Bert Blyleven had a miserable year (10-17, 5.38) and finally went on the disabled list in late July.

The vacationing Blyleven referenced that year, I think, in this tweet:

I remember thinking in '88 that Blyleven wasn't helping the team by hiding the injury. But, at least from this distance, I'm not sure the alternatives on hand would have been any improvement. The Twins that year got career years from Frank Viola and Allan Anderson; every other starter, including Blyleven, was pretty awful.

This year, the Twins have a very good rotation working in Triple A. The alternatives are better than in '88. And the upside of Nolasco is not comparable to the upside of Blyleven.


Brian Dozier was named to the AL squad for the Home Run Derby, to be held Monday at Target Field. There's no requirement that a home team guy be in the derby, but you may remember how Robinson Cano was booed a couple years ago in Kansas City for not selecting a Royal (specifically Billy Butler).

Anyway, Dozier will be taking part, and apparently he had already recruited his brother, who pitched in college, to throw to him. I don't know; if by some stroke of luck one of my brothers were in the Derby and asked me to pitch to him, I'd probably accept just to knock him down. But my sibling dynamics may not be normal.

There's one more participant for each league to be named, and the word is that Justin Morneau has told NL captain (and Colorado teammate) Troy Tulowitzki that he won't accept unless he makes the NL All-star team. Right now, he's one of the Final Five candidates, and was reported on Tuesday to be in the lead.

If Morneau is in the Derby, he might get a bigger hand from the Target Field crowd than Dozier.


In the immediate wake of Miguel Sano's Tommy John surgery, there was speculation that he might be able to DH in the minors in August. That has been ruled out.

So no minor league play for Sano, no Arizona Fall League, maybe winter ball in the Dominican. It's a conservative approach; it may be a wise approach; it is, definitely, a patience-testing approach.

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