Monday, July 24, 2017

Goodbye, Breslow (and injury updates)

Craig Breslow was designated for assignment after Sunday's game. The move was unsurprising, necessary and, for me at least, a bit depressing. I've always liked Breslow, or more accurately I liked what Breslow represented -- a top-of-the-charts intellect carving out a space for himself in baseball.

Breslow's been through this before. The veteran lefty is in his 12th major league season; he's pitched for seven teams in that time, but this is his second go-around with the Twins, and he had a pair with Boston as well. So he's been passed around like a dollar bill, and he's getting pretty worn -- he hasn't had a sub-4.00 ERA since 2013, when he helped the Red Sox win the World Series.

This might be it for Breslow as a pitcher, although Paul Molitor said he wants to continue his career and the Twins will try to place him with another major league team. He might even accept assignment to Rochester.


No corresponding move was announced Sunday, but the expectation is that Justin Haley -- remember him? -- will come off the disabled list. The Rule 5 pick was last seen almost two months ago, and his 30-day rehab assignment is to expire Tuesday.

He's tabbed for long relief, but he is stretched out -- he's been starting for Rochester --  and if there's no trade for a starter and if Bartolo Colon washes out, he might get a chance to start. Those are two "ifs," and I doubt the Twins are eager to go that route.


Speaking of 30-day rehab assignments, the clock started ticking during the weekend on Glen Perkins, who appeared in a Gulf Coast League game. He faced three hitters, striking out two and getting a comebacker to the mound.

The GCL being what it is -- the lowest rung on the organizational ladder -- the results are almost meaningless. More important:

  • He was reportedly without pain,
  • His velocity topped out at 90.

The first is good, the second less so. I doubt he can pitch effectively in the majors with a 90 mph fastball; changing speeds has never been his forte, and the lack of a usable changeup is part of what drove him to the bullpen.

The timeline is intriguing. If all goes well (that word if again) the Twins would have to bring him off the disabled list in late August, before the expansion of the active roster. Even if Perkins' return is somehow delayed until September, it will require opening a spot on the 40-man roster. There's a lot of time between now and then, to be sure.


No rehab assignment for Bryon Buxton, in part, it seems, because the Twins will be in Los Angeles today through Wednesday and the travel was deemed excessive. Buxton is eligible to come off the DL Tuesday.

Buxton, incidentally, ranks third on the team in WAR as calculated by Baseball Reference, behind Ervin Santana and Miguel Sano but ahead of Max Kepler and Brandon Kintzler.


The Twins traded pitcher Nick Tepesch to Toronto on Sunday for "cash considerations." This ranks as an exceedingly minor transaction; he's been on a minor league DL for a while and didn't appear to be in the Twins plans for the rest of the seasons. The "cash considerations" may wind up being dinner at the Winter Meetings.


  1. What are the odds that Buxton is sent down? I can't believe that the team will downplay his non-offensive performance to the point where they can justify playing anybody else in center. . . .

  2. Zero. They won't have flown him out to LA if that were the intent. They'd have sent him to Rochester for the rehab assignment they initially had in mind.

  3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.