Geez, a guy goes to work for a few hours and comes home to discover that the Twins shed three more players from the 40-man roster and added another. Busy day. Most of you have probably seen the list of moves by now, but I’ll summarize with my thoughts:
1.) Armando Gabino was placed on outright waivers and claimed by the Baltimore Orioles. This doesn’t upset me too much. Gabino had another option year left, but it was pretty clear in his limited big league time this year that he’s not yet ready to contribute at the Major League level, and there are other players who the Twins should prioritize protecting on the roster. I’m just fine with this.
2.) Justin Huber was outrighted to AAA, meaning that he cleared waivers. Huber always seemed to me like the most obvious candidate for removal from the 40-man roster. He was a late addition, not being added to the 40-man until his contract was purchased on September 8. He’s out of options. There’s no obvious place for him to play next year, and no track record of Major League performance to suggest that the Twins should have found room for him. This move was pretty clearly coming, and now we’ll just have to see if Huber is convinced to come back to Rochester next year to give it another go. My guess is he’ll be moving on.
3.) Orlando Cabrera filed for free agency. This was inevitable, it was just a matter of timing. I never understood why all eligible players don’t just file on the first day of the window, but I’m sure there’s a good reason. Either that, or their agents are just lazy. Anyway, with J.J. Hardy in the fold, there wasn’t any chance the Twins were going to negotiate a new deal with Cabrera, so that made it doubly inevitable, I suppose.
4.) In a somewhat surprising move, the Twins purchased the contract of RHP Juan Morillo from Rochester, placing him back on the 40-man roster and protecting him from the Rule 5 draft. The Twins obviously liked what they saw from Morillo after he was claimed from the Rockies and sent to AAA early in the year. I like this move, because if Morillo can control his heat (the numbers in Rochester were very promising in that regard), Morillo could be a useful addition to the bullpen in 2010. He’s out of options, so Spring Training will be make or break for him. Still, he’s worth protecting and I’m glad the Twins stuck him back on the roster.