How in the h*&@ does Herrmann make the 25 man roster?

Chris Herrmann

Chris Herrmann

The Twins 25 man roster appears to be set and Chris Herrmann is the back-up catcher. How does that happen? There is probably no nicer guy that Chris Herrmann but what is he doing making the Minnesota Twins 25 man roster going into the season opener just a few days away.

I need some help understanding how this could have happened. I know that the back-up catcher is not going to make or break the team in 2015 but I would like to understand the logic in this move. Nobody owes me an explanation, I understand that, but this move just seems like one of the dumbest moves the Twins have made in some time. I used to wonder if Nick Punto had some dirt on then manager Ron Gardenhire but now I have to wonder what Herrmann has on Paul Molitor and Terry Ryan. The other candidates for this role on the team were Josmil Pinto and Eric Fryer.

Eric Fryer is the oldest at 29 and he is primarily a catcher although Baseball-Reference lists him as a catcher/outfielder. That is kind of bogus as Fryer has appeared in just two games in the outfield for the Pittsburgh Pirates back in 2012 and the Twins have not used him as anything but a catcher. The case can be made that Fryer is the best catcher of the trio of candidates and he can hit a bit (career .246 average) but with little to no power. If the Twins brain trust were interested in just having a good back-stop then Fryer was their guy.

Josmil Pinto is already 26 and is by far the best hitter of the trio but pretty much everyone agrees that his work behind the plate still needs improvement, then again what players name could you bring up that doesn’t need improvement in some phase of his game. Pinto has a career average of .257 but he also has 11 home runs in just 78 games. Pinto has had injury issues this spring and that set him back for sure but unless the man is not in good enough shape to play, he should have been on the Twins roster.

The 27-year-old Chris Herrmann is a catcher by trade but the Twins also use him in the outfield and at first base. Herrmann has the most big league experience of this group having played in 97 games but his career average is .196 with four home runs. Herrmann’s is neither a good hitter nor a great defensive catcher but he brings flexibility to the table. But I have to ask you this, what good is flexibility in your back-up catcher when you carry only two catchers? The idea is that he is your back-up catcher, he is not going to play outfield or first base. The Twins have first base and the outfield covered, do you use him as the DH? Why? You have plenty of players that can be the DH that can hit better than Herrmann. There is ZERO logic in having Herrmann be the back-up catcher on this team.

I know that in a couple of weeks that Herrmann will be in Rochester and Pinto will be in Minnesota barring some kind of injury to Pinto but it drives me crazy when the Twins make cockamamy moves like this. I understand that this ballclub has far more serious issues than who the back-up catcher will be but this moves just jumps out at me and screams WHY? If you know why, tell me because I need help here.

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2 Responses to How in the h*&@ does Herrmann make the 25 man roster?

  1. Josmil Pinto is somewhat injured. He also SHOULD play on a regular basis. Eric Fryer was not on the 40-man roster. He is there just-incase.

    I would ask, would you rather have Nunez or Herrmann on the roster? At this point, Herrman does fill a role. He can play he outfield (as can Escobar and Nunez). But he can also backup first bae. The Twins have no first base backup unless you move Plouffe there, or intend to give Vargas sometime there (which they should when Mauer DHs. Herrmann can also catch.

    When the time comes and Pinto returns, with Escobar as the ultimate backup around the infield, I would say keep Herrmann INSTEAD of Nunez, then you have no problem playing either in another role.

    Of course, it is Herrmann’s job to now keep or lose. The next three weeks will show if Suzuki is an everyday catcher, if Nunez is any good, if Herrmann can get some at bats (we still have Joe Mauer who CAN suit up in an emergency).

    Yes, I don’t see Chris is any longterm plans, but the short-term, he is a viable bench bat. Is there someone better? Right now, no…unless you want the top prospects to also jsut sit on the bench.

    • jjswol says:

      I understand what you are saying but I would prefer Pinto or Fryer over Herrmann as the back up catcher. The Twins have Mauer, Vargas, and Plouffe to play first if needed. The Twins outfield is bad enough without putting a catcher out there. As for the emergency catcher, that is probably Escobar’s role. I don’t think we will ever see Mauer catch again, he doesn’t even warm up pitchers in spring training. Mauer’s catching days are in the past. I appreciate your comments.

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