Play Fantasy The Most Award Winning Fantasy game with real time scoring, top expert analysis, custom settings, and more. Play Now
Blog Entry

Morneau unsure of future; may switch to DH

Posted on: September 16, 2011 1:42 pm
 
Morneau
By Evan Brunell

Complications from concussions could push Justin Morneau to a DH role as early as 2012, the Minnesota Star Tribune writes.

"If that's something I need to do, and if that means being able to hit fourth and help this team win every day, I'll do it," Morneau, who has been out since Aug. 28 with a recurrence of concussion symptoms, said. "The last thing we need is to be out there tentative, and not being able to play the game the way it's supposed to be played."

While the 2006 A.L. MVP winner would love to stay at first, Morneau is more concerned with staying healthy. To that end, he would agree to DH for the team if it meant avoiding concussion symptoms or putting Joe Mauer in a better place to succeed. Mauer, who has also been beset by injuries this year, has played 18 games at the position this year, the first time he has played first in the majors.

"Whatever gives us the best chance to win," Morneau said. "If that's me playing first and him catching -- that's kind of why we're both signed here. But we need [Mauer's] bat in the lineup as much as we can. If that means him playing first base once a week, or whatever, let me DH."

Morneau's first concussion came in 2005 when Ron Villone of the Mariners plunked him in the head. That came on April 6 and caused him to miss 16 games although he was healthy the rest of the way. His second knock came last season on July 7. While trying to break up a double play, Morneau got kneed in the head by Toronto's John McDonald, which not only ended his season, but affected his preparation for 2011.

"I did the least amount of work I've done in my career last offseason because I was forced to, and I didn't feel like I was prepared," Morneau said. "I didn't feel as strong as I normally do, I didn't feel ready for the season, and I ended up having neck surgery, which is the last thing I wanted."

Now, after wading through a pinched nerve in his neck that required surgery and a left wrist strain, Morneau's got concussion problems again after diving for a double down the first-base line against the Tigers on Aug. 28.

"That's kind of what makes this whole thing scary," Morneau said of the latest aggravation. "It's a simple play, diving for a ball, that brought this stuff back again. So I don't know."

The latest setback has Morneau wondering about his future.

"That's one of those concerns for sure," he said. "I think that's something we'll revisit this winter, if not the next couple weeks, if this stuff continues. You never know. You put your trust in people who have experience who have studied this stuff their whole life and hope they're right."

Morneau has two years remaining on his six-year, $80 million deal. If the Twins opt to DH Morneau, they won't have much difficulty finding room for him. Michael Cuddyer and Jason Kubel, corner outfielders who steal time at first and DH, will be free agents while Jim Thome and Delmon Young are already gone. The first-base/DH/corner outfield glut the Twins have dealt with for some time will not be an issue, which clears the way for Morneau to DH.

Does that mean Joe Mauer plays first? Possibly, but given Mauer's success behind the plate so far and the difficulty finding a viable catcher, it's more likely Minnesota goes after a first baseman next season. If Morneau's success bears out, it wouldn't be too difficult to flip the two first baseman between first and DH. That could actually benefit Morneau, who could work his way back from the concussion as DH on his own timetable, but still give him reps at first.

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeonBaseball on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.
Comments
hotmeuly
Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 20, 2011 1:42 pm
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator



peulouy
Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 18, 2011 6:21 am
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator




Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 7, 2011 8:36 pm
 

Morneau unsure of future; may switch to DH

This really is a quality return. Will i make use of modest online business?



Since: Mar 2, 2008
Posted on: September 16, 2011 11:02 pm
 

Morneau unsure of future; may switch to DH

They best just release him, that way he can recover on his own terms.  Come back if he is ever ready.  He already has made millions in his bank account.  Twins should just cut their losses with the release buy-out option.


The concussions problems still existing make him a hinderance for the Twins system, it is the only correct move.  Instead of gambling multi-millions more every year on potential instead of accepting reality.  Twins can easily get someone else for cheaper and be more productive in the short-term anyways.  Get that new first baseman through the system faster as well.  He can have a feel good success story when he is back to normal in some other city, get his comeback cheers in Minnesota when he returns.



Since: Mar 8, 2011
Posted on: September 16, 2011 6:05 pm
 

Morneau unsure of future; may switch to DH

Did you really call Justin Morneau "untalented"? Watch baseball much?  Also, I highly doubt that any hitter is worried about balls coming towards them in the field while they are at the plate.  That doesn't really make any sense.

You obviously don't like the DH.  I can appreciate that argument.  I see both sides. I like the DH for the fact that the pitcher doesn't get a "free out" pitching to another pitcher (and yes, I know there are plenty of pitchers that can hit fairly well).  On the flip side, I also like the fact that every position player has to be talented in both offense and defense to play.  It also make managing the lineup more of an art form in tight games.



Since: Feb 23, 2009
Posted on: September 16, 2011 4:20 pm
 

Morneau unsure of future; may switch to DH

So in other words he can't play baseball anymore and should retire.  This just goes to show you that DH is ruining baseball, if you can't play the field retire don't let untalented players pad their hitting stats.  it's a lot easier to hit when that's all you have to think about and don't have to worry about fielding a ball hit towards you.  Abolish the DH!


The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com