$21 Million for a Back-up?

The Minnesota Twins added to their busy offseason of adding non-pitchers by signing Martin Gonzalez, formerly of the Houston Astros, to a two-year $21 million deal.

To me the question is, who are the Twins going to trade? Yes I realize that injuries happen, players don’t play up to expectation, etc. But if you are getting a player to be basically your “10th-man”, so to speak, why would you pay him as a starter?

Well, originally I thought it sounded absurd but after pondering it a little longer it may be a great deal for the Twins. If you compare Marwin Gonzalez to a 6th-man in basketball, he is making the amount of money that one of the best 6th-men make. J.J. Redick is a shooting guard in the NBA for the Philadelphia 76ers. I consider him to be a 6th-man . He’s a very solid shooter, at least throughout his career, but he doesn’t start. However, if an injury would occur he is a guy that would do a solid job in the absence of your starter. His contract is very similar to Gonzalez as well, in terms of money.

And this deal for the Twins is even better. Gonzalez can play more than one or two positions, unlike Redick, he can play every position but pitcher and catcher. So, almost anyone in your starting line-up could get hurt and you would have a back-up ready to go. On top of that, Gonzalez will likely get plenty of playing time in righty-lefty matchups that other guys struggle in and when players need a day off. So, this signing could be a great deal for the Twins. Gonzalez has also been an above average hitter in many seasons with the Astros. He’s a .264 career hitter, since 2014 he averages 14 home runs per season, 53 RBIs, .328 OBP, and a .436 slugging percentage.

So not only do you get a quality backup but also a guy who can step in when you have an injury. He will also be potentially valuable in the postseason, assuming the Twins get there. Gonzalez had a good postseason in 2017 with the Astros, he hit .538 (14 plate appearances), two doubles, five RBIs, and a run scored. He also added two home runs and four RBIs in this past postseason for the Astros. So, that could also be valuable for Minnesota.

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Author: CarsonSchuby

Founder/Host of the Schuby Show

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