The Minnesota Twins have a playoff caliber roster and expectations are high for the 2018 season. However, it’s never too soon to start looking ahead to next off-season.
Questions will loom over the Minnesota Twins all season long as a few key contributors are playing out the last year of their contracts. One of those players is Brian Dozier and according to reports he will be testing free agency at season’s end.
Extension talks between Dozier and the Twins are seemingly dead and that leaves the team in a precarious situation. However, Minnesota has options available to them and today Puckett’s Pond will discuss the least popular option. Should the Twins consider trading Dozier before the trade deadline in July? The answer to that question is complicated, but we’ll try to clear things up a little bit.
What should the Twins do with Dozier?
Dozier has been one of the more consistent performers for the Twins since breaking into the big leagues during the 2012 season. He averages 142 games played during his six-year career and has played at least 150 games in each of the last four seasons.
While durability has never been an issue for Dozier, his low batting average and high strikeout numbers have been. That is until he started mashing 25-plus home runs in each of the last three seasons. Dozier sports a .258/.335/.496 slash line while hitting 102 home runs since the 2015 season. He has also chipped in 46 stolen bases during that time, showing that he’s more than just a home run hitter.
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Dozier also took home the Gold Glove award at second base last year and his value has never been higher. For this reason, the Minnesota Twins should consider trading Dozier before he hits free agency. That might seem crazy and it’s understandable if you feel that way. However, this organization is set up well to handle the loss of Dozier.
Why this move makes sense for Minnesota
The Twins have a Top-15 ranked Minor League system and have a glut of middle infielders ranked near the top. One of those players, Nick Gordon, is on the cusp of the Major Leagues and has game-changing speed. However, he’s currently playing shortstop but will need to switch over to the keystone to have an impact in MLB.
The market for trading second basemen has been slow in recent seasons. However, Dozier is solid enough defensively that he could play more than second base. Teams that have playoff aspirations generally don’t trade one of their best players. That being said, Minnesota can trade Dozier for prospects and still have plenty of options to fill the void.
Ehire Adrianza has had a tremendous Spring and is another player that could soften the blow from trading Dozier. A contract extension would be ideal for the Minnesota Twins, Dozier is a proven commodity who has had a lot of success at the Major League level. However, Dozier doesn’t sound motivated to sign long-term, and the Twins can’t afford to let him walk for nothing more than a compensatory draft pick in return.
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