Posted at 10:01 PM on August 28, 2007
by Chris Dall
As the Twins chances fade with the passing of summer, I guess it's time to look ahead and see what the team has going into next season. Let's start with tonight's starting pitcher.
Well-known baseball prognosticator Gary Eichten told me as he was leaving today that Boof Bonser was going to draw "a line in the sand" tonight against Cleveland. When I pressed him on what exactly that meant, he wouldn't say. I took it to mean that Boof was either going to pass on seconds at the post-game buffet, or that he was finally going to show the Twins what he can do on the mound after going two months without a win.
Well, I'm not privy to what goes on in the Twins clubhouse, but the line Boof drew on the mound wasn't too clear. Yes, he put the team in a hole early, and he gave back the lead after they tied it up in the fifth, but he kept the game close, and that's what you want a back-of-the-rotation guy to do. The question is, can Boof be anything better than a 4-5 starter? If he can cut down on the walks and stay away from the big inning, maybe so. There's also the question of his girth, something the team is clearly concerned about. I'm not sure what the "next level" is for Boof, but if he's going to get to it, he might have to start by losing a few pounds. Then again, a few extra pounds haven't prevented this guy from winning 236 games.
I'm rooting for Boof. He may not be as important to the Twins future as Liriano or Garza, but having a solid young pitcher to round out the rotation will be pretty key given the money the team will likely (hopefully) be spending elsewhere.