11/3/09 – Twins outrighted Brian Buscher to AAA Rochester.
c. 10/25/09 – Twins released Ramon Acosta, Edison Alvarez, Raynard Doran, Kelvin Mota, Leonardo Parra, Juan Richardson, and Herbert Lara
I’m a bit late to the party with these transactions, but it’s been a busy week (and will continue to be!), so I’m glad just to have a chance to get this post up this morning.
Finally, while some fans probably want it to happen, I’d be fairly surprised if the Twins were to cut Brian Buscher . . . With Matt Tolbert and Brendan Harris ahead of him in the team’s infield depth chart, he could (and maybe even should) be released — but while that is certainly a possibility, I don’t see it as among the more likely options.
So, not exactly a bright shining display of prognostication prowess on my part. Nonetheless, as I acknowledged in that paragraph, Buscher really doesn’t have much to offer the Twins right now and removing him from the roster will open up a spot for someone with more upside. Anyway, the Twins got far more out of him than could have been expected from a minor league phase Rule 5 draft pick.
Technically, Buscher was not released by the Twins — he was outrighted to Rochester, which removed him from the 40-man roster. However, as Joe Christensen of the Star Tribune points out (see the first link in this post), Buscher can become a minor league free agent and there’s no reason to think he won’t take advantage of that opportunity.
Minor League Transactions
If I was a little late on Buscher, I’m digging up fossils by talking about the last batch of Twins minor league transactions, which involved the release of seven low level players who most of us had never heard of or paid any attention to.
While most of these releases were routine, I was a little surprised to see Kelvin Mota sent packing. Mota is a 21-year-old righty out of the Dominican Republic who signed with the Twins in June of 2007. He had an excellent 2008 season in Elizabethton, going 2-0 with a 1.07 ERA in 19 games. He backed that up with a solid (albeit short) 2009, splitting time between the GCL Twins (1.00 ERA, 1.11 WHIP in 6 G over 9 IP) and Elizabethton (3.86 ERA, 0.77 WHIP in 6 G over 11.2 IP). Perhaps he’s injured, or perhaps the numbers were just an aberration. They didn’t seem to justify the ole’ heave ho, however.
The rest of the bunch was basically made up of players 21 or older who have been in the organization for a few years and who the Twins probably felt they had evaluated fully enough to let go. None of them had performances that screamed out for them to be kept, although Raynard Doran did put up a 2.57 ERA and 1.00 WHIP in extremely limited GCL action this year.
Juan Richardson was the player on the mid-October release list who made it the furthest in the organization, having played in Beloit and Ft. Myers last year (his .210/457 in 62 AB with the Miracle undoubtedly contributed to his release — a 457 OPS? Ouch). Leonardo Parra, meanwhile, was the longest tenured in the bunch, having signed with the Twins all the way back in June 2004.