Tuesday, April 04, 2006

PETA to protest Twins for Beating a Dead Horse

The Twins haven’t seen one regular season pitch and they are already crying for the good old days. Only Brad Radke, Torii Hunter, Juan Rincon, Mike Cuddyer, Kyle Lohse and Johan Santana remain from the 2002 team. These six make it sound like their hearts were ripped out Temple of Doom style. Every interview seems to degenerate into a sob session recalling former Twins players. Some of the blame falls on Lavelle E Neal III for continuing to write articles on this topic.

"These are still great guys and guys that enjoy themselves [but] not as crazy," Cuddyer said. "You don't have Koskie throwing itching power in your pants. You don't have Mientkiewicz being ... Mientkiewicz. You don't have Eddie running around naked all over the clubhouse and LaTroy [Hawkins] playing off of Eddie.”

We can discuss all day, and have previously, why the Twins made certain moves. Most moves worked out for the better. So what the Twins remnant is truly longing for is someone to be the locker room clown. It’s a shame that Joe Nathan won’t streak the clubhouse, and Kosie took all of his itching powder with him, at great loss to the Twins.

One thing this article attempts to note is that only six players remain from their 2002 roster. It sure sounds like a lot of turnover, but is it really? After comparing 2002 stats with 2006 opening day rosters, the Twins are actually one of the most stable clubs in the league. Only the Astros and Angels have higher retention with nine players each. 25 teams have more turnover than the Twins. This means that every major league team regardless of payroll, market size or on-field success shuttles through players at a pretty quick rate. Turnover is not a baseball thing it is just the nature of sports.
If Cuddyer and Hunter think it is so terrible, consider the Florida Marlins. Three years ago they won the World Series and now have two players left from that team (and none from 2002 incidentally).
Whether the 2006 version of the Twins will be an improvement over past years is undetermined, but at least give the squad a chance before groaning for the glory days.