Friday, August 3, 2018

The road forward

Every other Thursday I do a half-hour segment on KMSU, a public radio station affiliated with Minnesota State University, Mankato, talking Twins with station director Jim Gullickson and, most weeks, Mark Halverson, a local attorney, KMSU host and Twins ticket holder.

I was, I fear, more incoherent than usual during Thursday's segment, and never more so than when Gully asked if we were going to see a bunch of "fresh faces" the rest of the season. So I'll try again, this time with the ability to rewrite a sentence before exposing it to the public.

It depends on what is a "fresh" face. The Twins -- and pretty much every other team -- have a lot of roster churn, particularly among the pitchers. Is Gabriel Moya -- who had two brief stints in the Twins bullpen earlier and was recalled to take Zach Duke's spot in the bullpen -- a fresh face? Is veteran infielder Logan Forsythe, who has as of this morning one at-bat in a Twins uniform, a fresh face?

In essense, the Twins have replaced:

  • Eduardo Escobar at third base with Miguel Sano
  • Brian Dozier at second base with Forsythe
  • Lance Lynn in the starting rotation with Aldaberto Mejia
  • Zach Duke as a lefty reliever with Moya
  • Ryan Pressly as a righty reliever with Trevor May

Forsythe is merely a placeholder. I'll probably write something about the Twins' second base options soon -- it may even be the Monday print column next week -- but I'm not giving anything away here by dismissing Forsythe as a contender for the job in 2019.

May is rehabbing from Tommy John; these next two months give the Twins a chance to evaluate his future role if any. Mejia is out of options next season; he is auditioning for a role in the back of the 2019 rotation. Moya -- the hope is that he can be a younger version of Duke, a reliable LOOGY out of the bullpen.

And of course, Sano. He's supposed to be a franchise cornerstone. He has been anything but in 2018. The Twins desperately need to get him right. Sano is not a fresh face, but the Twins hope these final two months are a fresh start.

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