Getting to Third Base (and a poke in the eye)

No, not the sexual third base. What are we, middle schoolers?

Today, LENIII of the Star Tribune said, for the first time, that he thought that the Twins had a good shot at getting Crede. He made a more methodical run-down of the teams that might be interested in Crede, which is worth reading, of course. Several other bloggers have expressed similar opinions (and if I find links, I’ll post them, I promise).

However, advocating for a Crede signing ignores so many other issues.

The thrid base spot hs been a problem for the Twins for years. Last year, the spot was filled by Mike Lamb (followed eventually by the platoon of Brendan Harris and Brian Buscher). Buscher and Harris did an admirable job, considering everything that was against them, including losing their jobs to an off-season acquisition, like (potentially) Crede). However, there are several other areas that deserve attention before third base.

First, the bullpen. Signing Luis Ayala was the equivalent to promising a sixteen-year-old a Lexus and then getting her a Ford. Not only will the warranty mean nothing (soon), it is just a crappy idea (I am not endorsing Lexus over Ford, I actually prefer NEITHER of these two brands. They might even be made by the same company, for all I know.). The front office promised us action, and then poked us in the eye instead. They said, “You want another Neshek? You do? Hah! Here’s Ayala!” (POKE!). You want an active front office? ” Here’s nothing!” (POKE!!!).

Let’s be honest: 2009 is the last year of the ‘Dome Field Advantage. Once the Twins move outdoors, they will no longer have the thunderous crowd noise, the favorable ceiling, or even the strange dimensions that were provided by the Metrodome. Many other bloggers have been talking about 2010 as the year to “go for it.” However, that should be 2009; In 2010, the Twins lose the meager advantage that they have going for them. Suddenly, it will be like playing in every other park in baseball (sure, a park with lots of fans, but still…).

The first thing the Twins should address is the outfield situation. See here for my thoughts on how to resolve that issue.

The second thing that needs to be resolved is the bullpen. The Twins are entering spring training with the following group: Joe Nathan (duh), Matt Guerrier, Jesse Crain, Boof Bonser/Phil Humber, Craig Breslow (a.k.a. Superman), Jose Mijares, and Luis Ayala. Where is the closer? Oh, there you are, Joe. Where’s the setup guy? Oh, crap. Crain? Breslow? BONSER? Where do we go from here? I suppose we wait to see what Spring Training brings in. Still, the Twins have bullpen problems. No one can deny that.

Have both of these been solved? Really? Good job, Twins front office, if this is the case. However, that still leaves one thing…

Really? We have reached Third Base? I suppose I should be happy, since it is number three of the three things that the Twins needed to address this off-season. What has this come to? Essentially, last year’s platoon is assumed to be the starter. However, the Twins seem not to have given up on Crede, which is, well, stupid. Buscher and Harris could hold down third at least as well as Crede, likely better. The only advantage of Crede is that the Front Office will have done something.

But just to have done some thinking about the spot is likely more than most fans will participate in. Most fans think, oh, wait, they did something. They’ll be better this year. SWEET!

Unfortunately, this has been proven false many times. Whee. Every. Year, as far as the Twins are concerned. Batista? Really. Punto? Alright, until he wasn’t. Lamb? Give me a break. Koskie? Here’s a real claim to fame; what about managing?

Ugh. Just. Ugh. Why are we worrying about third base when there are a ton of other unpursued options?

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