The Twins and GM Terry Ryan keep working to improve the team with Christmas just around the corner and Spring Training just 50 or so days away. Yesterday the Twins announced that they had traded catcher/outfielder Ryan Doumit to the Atlanta Braves for minor league LHP Sean Gilmartin.
The 32-year-old Doumit had spent the last two seasons with Minnesota with mixed results after the Twins signed him as a free agent in November 2011. Known more for his bat than his catching skills, the switch-hitting Doumit put up some nice numbers in 2012 when he hit .275 with 18 dingers and 75 RBI in 134 games however; in 2013 he appeared in 135 games but hit only .247 with 14 home runs and 55 RBI. Doumit suffered some concussion symptoms in 2013 and caught his last game in a Twins uniform on August 29th and was either in the outfield or used as a DH for the remainder of the season. There have been reports that Doumit is no longer interested in catching but those rumors must be false or the Braves are going to get a real surprise.
On the other side of the deal the Twins procured LHP Sean Gilmartin. Gilmartin was first drafted in 2008 in round 31 by the San Diego Padres but chose not to sign and then became a first round pick (28th over all) of the Atlanta Braves in 2011 and signed for a reported $1,134,000 signing bonus. Gilmartin progressed through the Braves system rapidly and in just his second year in pro ball in 2012 started 7 games for AAA Gwinnett. 2013 was a tough year for Gilmartin who had shoulder problems and really struggled in 2013. In 20 starts Gilmartin put up a 5.06 ERA and 1.43 WHIP in 105 innings at three minor league levels, including AAA Gwinnett but was still recently named the Braves’ tenth best prospect by Baseball America. “Gilmartin is a finesse pitcher who knows how to set up hitters and pitch to his strengths,” wrote the publication in its subscriber-only write-up, noting he projects as a No. 4 starter “His fastball has good movement while sitting in the 89-91 mph range, and he mixes it well with a plus change-up and a low-80s slider with a sharp, late break.” Here is what Mark Bradley at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution had to say about the trade and why the Braves let Gilmartin go.
In some other news, former Twins 3B Danny Valencia is on the move again. This time he was traded by the Baltimore Orioles to the Kansas City Royals for outfielder David Lough and there is already talk of a platoon with 3B Mike Moustakas but I find that really hard to believe. Since leaving the Twins in 2012 Valencia has already seen action with the Red Sox and Orioles and now hopes to wear a Royals jersey.
Former (2008) Twins pitcher Livan Hernandez also made the news recently when he put up for auction some of his major league memorabilia including his 1997 World Series MVP trophy and World Series ring. Hernandez who last pitched in 2012 earned over $50 million during his 17 year big league career but must be a little short of cash now days. Kind of sad…..