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Saturday, November 07, 2009

Powers: Clueless Gomez a bigger risk than slumping Hardy

The Twins have traded a toolbox without a key for a mystery.

Carlos Gomez has talent, the greatest of which is raw speed. He also has the baseball instincts of an Icelandic grade-schooler. As wonderful as he was to watch play center field, Gomez was a disaster everywhere else. He was clueless in the batter’s box. And he was prone to base-running gaffes, one of which probably cost the Twins a playoff game against the Yankees.

If nothing else, his departure to the Milwaukee Brewers will add years to the life of Twins first-base coach Jerry White. Poor Jerry had the unenviable task of trying to keep Go-Go from getting picked off. That was tough sledding.

J.J. Hardy either is an all-star or a bum, depending on which year you check the stats. After a couple of outstanding seasons at shortstop, he actually wound up back in Triple-A last season. When he’s right, he can play Gold Glove-quality shortstop and hit 20-plus home runs. Hardy has a terrific arm. When he’s not right, he can go into seemingly endless batting slumps.

Thanks to Eddy.

Repoz Posted: November 07, 2009 at 01:20 PM | 7 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: brewers, twins

Reader Comments and Retorts

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   1. OCD SS Posted: November 07, 2009 at 04:38 PM (#3381879)
"He has the baseball intstincts of an Icelandic grade-schooler"

Yeah, it's almost like he was pulled out of the minor leagues several years too early, and his development was crippled so the organization would have something to show for trading away their star pitcher...
   2. Mark Brouhards Jelly Donut Posted: November 07, 2009 at 04:45 PM (#3381886)
Welcome back to Milwaukee, Alex Sanchez!
   3. joeysdadjoe Posted: November 07, 2009 at 10:43 PM (#3382071)
I just don't get this trade.If you are the Brewers and you can't do better then Gomez why not wait?
   4. Crispix Attacksel Rios Posted: November 07, 2009 at 10:48 PM (#3382074)
How does an Icelandic grade-schooler compare to a random 8-year-old Eskimo?
   5. Greg K Posted: November 07, 2009 at 11:37 PM (#3382087)
How does an Icelandic grade-schooler compare to a random 8-year-old Eskimo?

This question is impossible to answer without pictures

...or is that not what you were really asking
   6. Snowboy Posted: November 08, 2009 at 12:50 AM (#3382105)
How does an Icelandic grade-schooler compare to a random 8-year-old Eskimo?

I know! Unfortunately, contractual obligations prevent me from discussing it here.

I just don't get this trade.If you are the Brewers and you can't do better then Gomez why not wait?

Because Hardy ended up so lost at the plate that even Google Earth can't find him, and he's fighting with mgmt, and he's due $5M, and the Brewers have a minimum salary replacement ready at SS. They were ready to take next-to-nothing to move him, and the Twins had exactly that to offer in Gomez.
   7. Walt Davis Posted: November 08, 2009 at 05:50 AM (#3382190)
Somewhat different cirucmstances but ...

in the 2003-4 offseason, the Mariners found themselves with an extra average SS, thanks to the brilliant FA signing of Rich Aurilia. Said SS was due to make $2.5 M. So, without exactly a gargantuan effort, they traded Carlos Guillen to Detroit for Ramon Santiago and a minor-leaguer. Guillen proceeded to bust out all over and was really the key piece in the Tigers' resurgence (since they got him nearly for free).

I doubt Hardy will start posting 120-140 OPS+s like Guillen but I can easily see this trade working out similarly and him bouncing back into that 110-120 range. At age 24, Hardy was a good-hitting and fielding SS with nice power (190ish ISO). At age 25, he was a good-fielding and very good-hitting SS with nice power (190ish ISO). It would be odd that, at age 27, he'd be average or worse. Not impossible, but odd.

Carlos Gomez has his uses. Unfortunately they're pretty much the same uses Corey Patterson had -- with less power. If the Brewers were the Yankees, burning a lineup spot while watching Gomez catch everything in sight would be fine. He's not a good piece for the Brewers.

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