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Thursday, February 18, 2021

Brian Dozier, an All-Star for the Twins, retires at 33

The Zoom version of that occurred on Thursday when Brian Dozier, 33, announced his retirement after nine seasons, including seven with the Twins. Dozier wore a perpetual grin on his face as Ron Gardenhire, Paul Molitor, Eduardo Escobar, Terry Ryan, Josh Willingham and even clubhouse major-domo Rod McCormick appeared on screen to wish No. 2 a happy retirement.

“You know how much I respect you, man,” said Escobar, who got out of a Diamondbacks team meeting to congratulate Dozier. “You [taught] me [how to] play the right way this game, man. That’s why I’m still here.”

Escobar was the teammate who went through good and bad times with Dozier. Gardenhire was the manager who told Dozier to stop taking ground balls at short after his rookie season. Molitor was the manager who benefited when Dozier unlocked his power, blasting 42 home runs in 2016 to become the only Twin other than Harmon Killebrew to reach 40 in a season.

“In addition to that performance, it was just how you took care of your teammates and made everybody better.” Molitor said. “You were never selfish about anything that you do.”

Of the 192 home runs Dozier hit his career, 167 came as a second baseman for the Twins, a club record. He hit 127 home runs from 2014-17, sixth most in the American League.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 18, 2021 at 03:06 PM | 9 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: brian dozier

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   1. salvomania Posted: February 19, 2021 at 09:44 AM (#6005785)
I'll always remember Dozier as a guy I cut from my fantasy team at the end of May 2016, about 1/3 of the way into the season, when he was hitting barely .200 with only five homers.

Brain Dozier, 2016
through May: .202/.294/.329, 5 homers, 21 runs, 17 rbi (46 games)
June-October: .294/.358/.631, 37 homers, 83 runs, 82 rbi (109 games)

There have been a few guys like that, where I lost patience and just cut 'em---didn't even try to work a trade, just cut 'em---and they immediately caught fire.

Two young guys I did that with recently were Kyle Tucker, last year (severe roster crunch, small rosters with only 2 DL spots), and Ozzie Albies, in 2019.

With Tucker, 22 games into the 60-game season he was hitting .193/.227/.349, and I cut him; he went .317/.386/.619 the rest of the way.

With Albies, I had Keston Hiura in my minor-league spot, and when Hiura was called up to the Brewers in late May, Albies was hitting just .255/.311/.417 through the Braves' first 50 games, and I cut him. He was pounced on in the league's weekly free-agent draft, and then hit .314/.371/.539 the rest of the way, finishing with 24 homers, 102 runs, and 86 rbi.
   2. . . . . . . Posted: February 19, 2021 at 10:30 AM (#6005798)
Whenever a guy like Dozier retires, it reminds me of how idiotic MLB's pension qualification is. Dozier doesn't get a full pension because he has ~9 years of service.
   3. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: February 19, 2021 at 12:42 PM (#6005828)

Whenever a guy like Dozier retires, it reminds me of how idiotic MLB's pension qualification is. Dozier doesn't get a full pension because he has ~9 years of service.

Why is that idiotic?
   4. Walt Davis Posted: February 19, 2021 at 10:23 PM (#6005946)
FWIW, per b-r, he has 7.164 years of service time. And $30M in career earnings so he can probably squeak by on partial pension.
   5. aberg Posted: February 19, 2021 at 10:55 PM (#6005950)
Dozier was one of my favorites during his brief prime for the Twins. His 42 homer season gave us something to cheer for during a period that was pretty bereft for the franchise. I don't remember if it's the single season HR record for a 2B, but it was a pretty special year. Like #1 said, he started badly and went absolutely nuts.

He retires with a gold glove, an all-star appearance, a ring, two World Series trips, 102 HRs, 1000+ hits. Guys like that get forgotten by history, but it's fun to have an opportunity to reflect on his career at this point. My favorite anecdote about him is that he learned Spanish on his own time because he thought it would make him a better teammate with so many Latino teammates. I think he also spent time in the winters building houses in poor countries in Latin-America. Seems like a very good guy.
   6. Ziggy: social distancing since 1980 Posted: February 19, 2021 at 11:07 PM (#6005955)
"...retires at 33"

and he's living the dream
   7. Howie Menckel Posted: February 19, 2021 at 11:14 PM (#6005956)
Dozier finished up with a cup of coffee with the Mets.

are the Mets where infielders go to die, or are there other teams that also put out the welcome mat for such washed-up players?
   8. The Yankee Clapper Posted: February 19, 2021 at 11:53 PM (#6005959)
And $30M in career earnings so he can probably squeak by on partial pension.
His playoff shares should help a bit, too. Who can forget his .000/.444/.000 World Series stat line for the Dodgers & Nationals?
   9. . . . . . . Posted: February 20, 2021 at 03:12 PM (#6006012)
Why is that idiotic?

Starting from the most important to silliest:

- the players most in need of the pension are the ones who didn't play 10 years. Everyone with 10 years of service time hit arb and FA, so they have enough money that the pension is a nice bonus. The pension should be plugging the gap for guys who made the majors, were in the union, but didn't make it long enough to get a big payday. Given the diminishing marginal value of money, that's the most efficient use of it.

- the pension doesn't adjust for playing time, only roster time. So a guy like Brian Dozier with 4900 PAs doesn't get a full pension, while Frankie Cervelli, with 2600PAs, would fully vest this season if he makes a team.

- the pension doesn't adjust for position. so starting pitchers who (historically) risked shorter careers are prejudiced; low-usage relievers get a windfall

- 10 years is a totally arbitrary number that doesn't connect with average career length.

If you were actually constructing a pension to serve the union membership, you'd have it max out at the amount of service before someone hits FA, and then cap it. And the structure would be different for pitchers and hitters, reflecting the different injury risk.

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