Minnesota Twins: Projecting the Twins’ Opening Day lineup for 2020

Minnesota Twins' Nick Gordon (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
Minnesota Twins' Nick Gordon (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images) /
2 of 5


Willians Astudillo, Marwin Gonzalez, Nick Gordon, Ehire Adrianza, and Jake Cave

The Twins’ bench will look drastically different in the upcoming season. Jason Castro will head to free agency after an excellent year, and he will be tough to replace. Castro was a veteran presence in the clubhouse for a relatively young Twins team and hit 13 home runs and while playing his usual excellent defense. He was outplayed by Mitch Garver however, and will look for a starting job somewhere else.

Jonathan Schoop will join Castro on the way out. Schoop started most of the games at second for the Twins last season, but Luis Arraez has looked too good to keep in a platoon role. With both players gone, the Twins will have to find replacements. The team preferred to go with a five-man bench for most of the year, with a catcher, three infielders, and an outfielder, so we’ll stick with that here.

The catcher market isn’t great, and since Castro will be too expensive to bring back, the Twins will likely look to Willians Astudillo as the backup catcher. Astudillo is a good hitter when facing right-handers, an area Mitch Garver struggles with. He is a cheap player who is loved by his teammates and players, so it makes sense to have him return. In the outfield, Jake Cave played well enough to stay on as the backup outfielder, and the team really believes in him, but of any player, he is the most likely to miss out on the roster this season.

For the infielders, Marwin Gonzalez performed well in his super-utility role and is a lock to hold that position, filling in at all four infield spots as well as in the outfield. For the two infield spots, Ehire Adrianza and Nick Gordon make the most sense. Adrianza has been a Twin for three years now and has done a pretty solid job filling in at all four infield spots and hitting well enough to be a solid reserve.

As for the fifth spot? Nick Gordon has been in the Minnesota Twins organization since the team selected him 5th overall in 2014. He’s been a decent hitter in the minors (.276 Career BA) who performed well (.298 BA) last year and has excellent speed. He has nothing left to prove in the minors and the Twins could use his speed and versatility.