Sep 1, 2014; Baltimore, MD, USA; Minnesota Twins third baseman Trevor Plouffe (24) throws out Baltimore Orioles designated hitter Nelson Cruz (not pictured) at first base during the seventh inning at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Minnesota Twins defeated Baltimore Orioles 6-4. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports
Why They’ll Be Better:
Trevor Plouffe put a lot of things together in 2014. He was able to find a consistent power stroke for parts of the season, and he took significant strides forward in the field. With Miguel Sano back in the picture, Plouffe will be asked to replicate the high level of play he proved capable of a season ago. At some point Sano will surface in the big leagues, and whether or not that pushes Plouffe to a different position, it’s only going to be a gain for the Twins offensively.
Why They’ll Be Worse:
Although Plouffe had a solid season in 2014, it ended with an injury that required surgery. Yes, he had a full offseason to heal and is all systems go heading into Spring Training, but there will still be some rust to shake off. The Twins have to hope that Plouffe’s 2014 wasn’t an outlier and will be replicated. Also, Sano has yet to confirm the notion that he can handle the hot corner at the highest level. His bat is going to play, but he may cost a couple of runs when he arrives.