Michael Cuddyer has been a lot of things for the Minnesota Twins during his 14 years with the organization. Since being drafted in the first round of the 1997 amateur draft, Michael Cuddyer has played all over the diamond (literally ALL OVER THE DIAMOND, a true super utility man). He’s played every position except catcher and pitcher in his 10 years in the big leagues and despite his struggles through the first 25% of this season, Ron Gardenhire has asked him to play first base and second base to cover up for some of the unfortunate injuries the Twins have had this year, and he’s started to surge! Through his first 37 games this season Cuddyer is hitting just .252, his lowest batting average since becoming a big league regular (excepting the 2008 season when he spent two stints on the 15-day DL and played in only 62 games). Today, since then he has raised his batting average 21 points and his OPS+ is the third highest in his career at 112. With Joe Mauer out of the line-up and Morneau hitting the DL, the Twins have needed Cuddyer to do more than ever, and for a while he was unable to answer the call. The Twins line-up is dramatically different without Mauer playing everyday, and without Justin Morneau, Tsuyoshi Nishioka, Jim Thome, and Jason Kubel. Include a massive sophomore slump for Danny Valencia and Cuddyer’s value is greater than ever.
As the Twins Twins have done this season with Denard Span (Span.I.Am), and Alexi Casilla (Alexi ‘The Punch’ Casilla), we will attempt to find a nickname for Michael Cuddyer with the hopes of continuing the Twins’ medioric rise (even if the Twins are 26-39 and in last place in the American League)! Because of his reputation for being willing to do whatever is asked of him to help an injured teammate, we propose that Michael Cuddyer will hereafter be known as The General Practitioner!
Have an injured first baseman? Call the GP. Need someone to fill in for your second baseman with a broken leg? Call the GP. Lose your Corey Koskie to the Blue Jays? Call in the GP! Cuddyer does it all, and his willingness to move around is well documented. Cuddyer, who was drafted as a SS, plays a solid RF, unfortunately, he has barely had any opportunities to play there this year. As always, Cuddy does what any good Doctor should do, he goes where he is needed.
If it needs fixing the GP has the tools to get it repaired! (The real question is can the GP find his edge and give the Twins the edge they need to turn this season around?)
The Doctor is in!
As always with the Twins Twins, the original text is mine, and the italics come from Paul.
The Twins begin a rain shortened two game series with the Chicago White Sox this evening. The Twins are currently 10 games behind the Detroit Tigers, who, aided by a spectacular performance by Justin Verlander, took over the top spot in the AL Central last evening by beating the Cleveland Indians.