FanGraphs Baseball


RSS feed for comments on this post.

  1. Contributors to the problem of playing Cuddyer are numerous.

    1. His contract.
    2. His willingness to play anywhere else on the field to help the team.
    3. His flashes of offensive brilliance in ’06 and ’09.
    4. The lack of depth at the position in the organization.
    5. His personality (call it The Jeff Francoeur Effect).
    6. It does help get Kubel and Thome into the lineup.

    I’m a bit worried that after this season, Cuddyer will be re-signed by the Twins. Like I said in #5, he’s similar to Frenchy in the sense that while his negatives outweigh his positives, it’s the pros that get the most attention. I can only hope that if he is re-signed, the Twins are smarter with the type of contract they give him.

    Comment by Bryz — April 26, 2011 @ 4:16 pm

  2. #1 should have been….

    He does magic.

    Comment by Small Sample Goodness — April 26, 2011 @ 4:31 pm

  3. Luke Hughes may be listed as a middle infielder, but he is a middle infielder the same way Michael Cuddyer is.

    Comment by glassSheets — April 26, 2011 @ 4:41 pm

  4. With all of the outfield potential in the Twin’s farm system I would be surprised if Twin’s resigned Cuddyer. Personally I think that they will let Cuddyer and Kuble go next year. The 2011 outfield would be Span, Revere, Young (left to right).

    However, you are right that if they do hold on to anyone out of loyalty or whatever that Cuddyer would be the guy. I just hope that the refusal to sign Nick Punto this offseason (another Gardenhire favorite) shows that maybe the FO is looking beyond past performance and loyalty to the team when making signing decisions.

    Comment by Pjmcnally — April 26, 2011 @ 4:51 pm

  5. “This is compounded by the fact that the Twins are largely a ground ball staff.”

    Ok, I’m fairly sure that there’s a conspiracy that requires anyone writing an article about the Twins’s bad defenders to write that their bad defense is compounded(!) by the tendency of their pitchers to have balls hit disproportionately at those fielders. This has been an annual affair with the Twins’s bad corner outfielders and supposed extreme fly-ball pitchers, but now that one of their bad outfielders is a bad infielder, all of a sudden they’re an extreme ground-ball staff!

    Anyway, it’s a weak, weak argument even at the true extremes (extreme fly-ball staff + extremely bad outfield defense, e.g.; it just doesn’t “compound” the issue much at all), but especially when the team is, like the Twins, not really extreme at all in either way.

    Comment by Luke in MN — April 26, 2011 @ 4:58 pm

  6. I think they’d keep Cuddy in RF or sign a FA before playing Revere full time. His bat is extremely lackluster.

    Comment by mike — April 26, 2011 @ 5:02 pm

  7. Cuddyer still mashes lefties. He’s useful in limited doses.


    C: Mauer
    1B: Morneau
    2B: Nishioka
    SS: Casilla
    3B Valencia
    LF: Young
    CF: Span
    RF: ?????
    DH: Cuddyer/Kubel platoon

    of course Cuddyer can then be your super utility guy and fill in for guys all over the place…

    Comment by Sean — April 26, 2011 @ 5:09 pm

  8. I would be shocked if they re-signed Cuddy (as we lovingly call him here in MN). Not to mention Revere and Hicks knocking on the door, but as early as next season, I think it’s altogether possible that Mauer is either in RF or LF most of the time. Cuddy will sign with a team looking for a RH bat that will bank on him being more ’06 than most every other year. He seems to be a great guy, which will help him stay in the league longer, but he is clearly trending toward the sunset portion of his career.

    Comment by Ben — April 26, 2011 @ 5:13 pm

  9. How could I forget?

    Comment by Bryz — April 26, 2011 @ 5:25 pm

  10. @ mike: Revere’s bat is “lackluster” only in the sense that he doesn’t have any power. He’s still going to hit for average and draw walks.

    @ Ben: Joe Benson is more of a guy to look forward to in the short-term than Hicks. A Span-Benson-Revere outfield may be what we see in the near future.

    Comment by Bryz — April 26, 2011 @ 5:31 pm

  11. Look, I see the knocks on Cuddyer, but we are also talking about a League Average range hitter who can fill in almost anywhere you need him. That’s a big deal for a club.

    (I would like to add, I hope they manage to find another 5 starts at 3rd for him so he keeps his now extreme fantasy flexibility for next season too.)

    Plus, he has hit .286/.355/.446/.801 with a 304 BAbip over his last 15 games – similar to expectations for him, so… And as far as last season

    .235/.316/.353/.669 with .275 BAbip – Aug 1-14, 2010
    .281/.339/.421/.760 with .313 BAbip – Aug 15-31, 2010
    .255/.283/.314/.597 with .295 BAbip – Sept 1-14, 2010
    .263/.338/.439/.777 with .289 BAbip – Sept 15-season end

    He had two bad stretches late last season, but was fairly strong between them – posting numbers similar to (and even a bit higher then) his overall .271/.336/.417/.753. If he had had said bad stretches early in the season instead of late, the entire “Since the start of last August” goes away and we instead have a guy who just didn’t hit in the first 5 or 6 games of 2011.

    Overall, I think you are making much ado about nothing on that front.

    Comment by JoeyO — April 26, 2011 @ 5:35 pm

  12. The reports I’ve seen are not high on Revere as a defensive CF. Considering Span’s early (small sample size) success this season, I would imagine the noodle-armed Revere in LF with Young patroling RF.

    Comment by Nick — April 26, 2011 @ 6:24 pm

  13. What order would Twins fans put the following four second basemen in defensively?

    Luke Hughes
    Trevor Plouffe
    Matt Tolbert
    Michael Cuddyer

    Comment by Xeifrank — April 26, 2011 @ 6:33 pm

  14. Michael Cuddyer is what you get when you take Mickey Hatcher and trade quality defense for double-digit homers and a face that makes the farm girls swoon. In other words, the most perfect Midwestern baseball playing non-catcher specimen in the universe.

    Comment by Choo — April 26, 2011 @ 6:45 pm

  15. Tolbert



    Was this question intended to depress Twins fans?

    Comment by Small Sample Goodness — April 26, 2011 @ 6:46 pm

  16. I’m hoping Joe Benson is your CF, Span your LF and Kubel your RF next year. I’m hoping Nishi is back and healthy for most of the year and is the 2B next year and for the majority of this year. I’m hoping Cuddy is not back on this roster, unless it is as RH bat off the bench and DH against lefties for not much money.

    I think this Cuddy at 2B thing is short term until Nishi is back. Unfortunately, I think Gardy will stick Nishi at SS (putting us out of our Casilla misery) and keep Cuddy at 2B. The MIF is a black hole in MN right now.

    Comment by mike wants wins — April 26, 2011 @ 6:58 pm

  17. But they are really bad at outfield and infield defense, so either way the pitching staff is screwed

    Comment by Josh — April 26, 2011 @ 7:20 pm

  18. This is a good response to people who think the MLB pays any attention to sabermetrics or uzr or anything that’s been invented since 1952.

    Comment by shthar — April 26, 2011 @ 9:33 pm

  19. Don’t forget Raymond Bo-Shue Chang!

    Comment by shthar — April 26, 2011 @ 9:42 pm

  20. Hawpe played 6 games at 1B last year for Colorado. That’s a pretty odd and unnecessary comparison.

    Comment by J — April 26, 2011 @ 10:10 pm

  21. Last year the Twins lead in UZR at almost every infield position. Outfield… not so much.

    This year, they lost every one of those players.

    Comment by Barkey Walker — April 26, 2011 @ 10:16 pm

  22. I don’t think there is any reason to believe that current defensive stats are better than a managers assessment. UZR is OK at best.

    Comment by Barkey Walker — April 26, 2011 @ 10:20 pm

  23. I think Cuddy is still OK offensively if he can stay healthy. He had a hand injury in 2008 that affected his power and last year was playing with a knee injury. He got off to a slow start this year but I think that can be partly attributed to missing over the first half of spring training after having wart removal surgery on his foot.

    Comment by GonzoBob — April 26, 2011 @ 11:56 pm

  24. @ Nick: Sorry, my listing of Span, Revere, and Benson was not supposed to reflect where I think they’ll play in the future. If that was the case, I would have said Revere in LF, Span in CF, and Benson in RF.

    Comment by Bryz — April 27, 2011 @ 2:50 am

  25. I agree with Small Sample Goodness, but I’ll be a bit more descriptive:

    Tolbert – Average to Above-Average

    Everyone else – Cover yer eyes.

    Comment by Bryz — April 27, 2011 @ 2:52 am

  26. Excuse me, I meant “Slightly Above-Average” for Tolbert.

    Comment by Bryz — April 27, 2011 @ 2:52 am

  27. Actually, it does compound the problem. More balls directed at fielders who convert a low percentage of them into outs = more hits on balls in play than if the staff’s tenancies were neutral or directed away from the porous part of the defense.

    Comment by Kevin S. — April 27, 2011 @ 5:07 am

  28. People are making a big deal about his poor offensive start. He’s had bad BABIP luck so far. He’s the same rate of grounders this year, and his LD is a little lower then other years, but he’s really not that far off his career numbers to suggest his poor start is anything but luck/Injury

    Comment by ddriver80 — April 27, 2011 @ 7:18 am

  29. An alternate interpretation could be that his past years were luck. Maybe his real talent is somewhere in between. Maybe he’s on the wrong side of 30 and those grounders aren’t quite as hard hit, those fly balls dont travel quite as far, and he’s not quite as fast as he once was to leg out some extra bases/hits.

    Or, maybe he has just been unlucky.

    Comment by glassSheets — April 27, 2011 @ 10:09 am

  30. Read “The Machine” last month where Sparky Anderson waited until the Reds were on the road to start Rose at 3B instead of LF since the GM was against it.

    Comment by gdc — April 27, 2011 @ 11:20 am

  31. Given the current roster (Tolbert and Hughes are replacement level), I think it makes some sense if you’re getting Kubel and Thome into the lineup against a right-hander, but to sacrifice the defense at 2B to start those guys against lefties is short sighted.

    The Twins radio announcers did say that we should start the “Jason Kubel Gold Glove watch” right after he made an “outstanding” running catch last week in Baltimore. Never mind that Ichiro would have been camped under it and roasting marshmallows on the same play.

    Comment by Brian — April 27, 2011 @ 2:25 pm

  32. That sounds like a Dan Gladden sort of thing to say.

    Comment by Bryz — April 27, 2011 @ 2:46 pm

  33. Yeah, that’s the idea and it’s true…to a really small extent. Figure out the difference between a high FB (or GB) staff and the league average. Figure out how many more chances that will result in for whatever bad fielders your talking about. Figure out how many of those chances will be foiled by the bad fielder’s badness. You will be underwhelmed. Bad defense is bad, but the degree to which it is compounded by a pitching staff’s batted-ball tendencies–whatever they are–is trivial. There just isn’t that much variance in batted-ball tendencies at the team level.

    Comment by Luke in MN — April 27, 2011 @ 5:45 pm

  34. Mickey Hatcher?

    Wow! There’s someone who reads this site that’s almost as old as I am!

    Comment by shthar — April 28, 2011 @ 12:26 am

  35. You can honestly type that we should accept an assessment that a team is better with Cuddyer at 2b?

    Unless the rest of the roster is 13 dead guys and 11 Mel Tillis records, that’s not a good assessment.

    But it is a good example that all this stuff we endlessley argue about is completely ignored by almost all of professional baseball.

    Comment by shthar — April 28, 2011 @ 12:31 am


    Comment by BigDaddyGunz — April 28, 2011 @ 3:41 am

  37. This is my first comment ever but I had to relay something I heard Dan Gladden (former Twin, current radio color man) say that almost made me pull over while driving.

    “On any other organization he (Cuddyer) could play shortstop”

    Never mind thats totally absurd but even if it were true I’m pretty sure that our current SS is one of the worst players in the Majors at any position right now.

    I almost got whiplash shaking my head at the, apologies to Joe Morgan, most asinine and false statement ever uttered on the subject of baseball.

    That being said Cuddy played pretty alright on Easter Sunday when I had a close view. His range was Jeter-like but he made some solid plays and good throws, even turned a DP.

    Comment by MNzach — April 28, 2011 @ 5:47 pm

  38. Shocked that it was so low really. I mean its a decent number, but given that its a yes/no question about equating value, I would have expected it to be higher.

    Comment by renren876 — September 14, 2011 @ 6:29 am

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

Close this window.

0.250 Powered by WordPress