Market for Dozier uncomfortably quiet

Minnesota Twins v Houston Astros
Market for Dozier uncomfortably quiet
HOUSTON, TX – SEPTEMBER 06: Brian Dozier #2 of the Minnesota Twins hits a home run in the fourth inning against the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park on September 6, 2015 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)

The past several successful spells in Twins history, from the 1991 World Series of their Renaissance in the 2000s, have all been marked by the emergence of a collection of prospects acquired in a trade in the recent past. The Twins traded away Frank Viola, and Kevin Tapani and Rick Aguilera were key components of the pitching staff the following season. In 1997, Chuck Knoblauch demanded to be traded, and he was, for Brian Buchanan (who eventually became Jason Bartlett in another trade), Eric Milton (subsequently Carlos Silva and Nick Punto) and Cristian Guzman. In 2003, the Twins reupped, trading AJ Pierzynski for Boof Bonser, Francisco Liriano and Joe Nathan.

Later in their run, perhaps seeking to capitalize on a run of success that hadn’t translated to the playoffs, the Twins seemed to stop dealing from strength. Perhaps they were snakebitten as well, but the Johan Santana trade, which never really materialized into the prospect coup the team had hoped. Eventually, the team stopped trading away their talented players and started hoping they could develop through the draft and the international free agent pool.

The Twins, whether there is a direct connection or not, have fallen on bad times. It seems apparent that the Twins internal development was not up to par. Derek Falvey came into his role with a reputation for player development, but certainly, there are too many players in the organization that are too old, or are generally not the type of player that the new regime looks for. There needs to be an infusion of talent, younger, moldable and in the Falvey-Levine vision.

The most obvious trade candidate, and one that I still strongly believe should be traded, is Brian Dozier. He was so good this past year, among the best 2b in all of baseball. His contract makes him a viable trade chip, and his relative youth ensures that an acquiring team will be able to glean quite a bit of value from him. The problem is that there seems to be only one team interested in Dozier’s services.

As has been reported everywhere at this point, it sounds like the Los Angeles Dodgers are the only real suitor for Dozier’s services. Suddenly, when some people, myself included, thought that the Twins would have many teams beating a path to them for Dozier, it sounds instead that they are on the wrong side of the market. The Angels needed a second baseman, and grabbed Danny Espinosa, but Ian Kinsler, Logan Forsythe or even a return of Chase Utley are all options.

Many people have insisted that the Twins have the leverage, since they have the player that everyone wants, but that isn’t true, in my estimation. The Twins NEED to make a move, to reinvigorate the farm system, to build a team that the new leadership wants to lead, and to capitalize on what talent they do have. The Dodgers have options, and the Twins do not. What happens if the Dodgers decide that the Twins are asking too much for Dozier, and decide to get Forsythe, who Andrew Friedman has acquired before (when he was with the Rays).

If that happens, the Twins are out of options. What are the options for doing anything if they can’t get Dozier to Los Angeles. There aren’t any seriously tradeable assets, save, maybe, for Ervin Santana, who everyone seems loathe to trade. If the Twins go through the entire offseason, signing Jason Castro and doing nothing else to significantly alter their organization, well then what was the point in even getting rid of Terry Ryan?

The market seems to be very soft for Brian Dozier, and that is a very scary proposition.

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