Saturday, March 28, 2015

The coming of 'clarity'

Lester Oliveros has
the right to accept
free agency after
being removed from
the 40-man roster
for the second time.
Paul Molitor on Friday promised "clarity" this morning about the pitching staff, specifically about the fifth starter.

Trevor May got dinged up in his start against Pittsburgh. Apparently Aaron Hicks didn't help matters by turning a catchable deep fly into a "double," but it still wasn't a good line score for May. I've figured all spring that May was going to need some injuries among the veterans to snag a rotation spot, and that hasn't happened.

Meanwhile, the Twins outrighted Lester Oliveros. I was barely aware he was on the 40, to be honest, and now he isn't. There are at least three non-roster guys in camp with a legit chance to make the 25-man roster (outfielder Shane Robinson and right-handed relievers Blaine Boyer and Tom Hamburger), so there might be other moves to come.

Oliveros is an alleged hard-thrower (he had, during his brief September callup last year, the single fastest pitch thrown by a Minnesota Twin), but he had arm issues early in camp and was sent out in the first wave of cuts. Meanwhile there is chatter that the Twins are dissatisfied with the velocities left in their bullpen and reports that they're sniffing around Rafael Soriano, the veteran reliever who lost the closer job in Washington last summer and has gone unsigned this winter.

Which, ugh. Soriano's 35 and there must be reasons why nobody signed him.

Current bullpen projection:

Closer: Glen Perkins
Setup 1: Casey Fien
LOOGY 1/Setup 2: Brian Duensing
MR1: Tim Stauffer
MR2: J.R. Graham
MR3: Boyer
Long: Tommy Milone or Mike Pelfrey

If they bring in somebody from the outside, who gets bumped? Not any of the first three, and not Graham, who is a Rule 5 guy with velocity. Ryan's downplayed Stauffer's struggles all month, but maybe he's the guy they're looking to replace in that mix,

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