I don't know if local sportswriter Jim Souhan(link may need subscription) coined the term "Reclamation Rotation", but I love it. The Twins announced this week that pitcher Carlos Silva will come north to start the season as part of this year's pitching rotation. To say he's been struggling so far this spring is an understatement and the move has a lot of fans bitching that Matt Garza should have been brought up instead. Time will tell, but I'm inclined to trust the Twins coaches and staff on stuff like this.
Souhan thinks it's a mistake also, but to his credit he takes a look at why the Twins might choose their "worst Opening Day rotation since they trotted out Sean Bergman in 2000"(Ouch, by the way, on that remark). Number one, and I agree it's the biggest reason:
1. Conservativism with youngsters: Because their long-term fortunes are determined by the development of prospects, they are loath to rush even the most talented players to the big leagues.
"This isn't about Silva," Twins General Manager Terry Ryan said. "This is about Garza ... We think the right thing to do is to send Matt back to Triple-A to make sure he develops as a complete pitcher."
The Twins need Garza to become a top-of-the-rotation starter. They believe his progress would be slowed if he went north with the Twins.
Bingo. People are entitled to their opinions of course, though I think they'd do well to keep in mind what Terry Ryan, manager Ron Gardenhire, and pitching coach Rick Anderson have done for Twins fans the last few years before they get too bent out of shape. A few outings from Silva at the beginning of the year to see if he can pull it together are worth it. It's not going to ruin the season if he doesn't.
Starting pitching may sink the Twins this year, we'll see soon enough. The Reclamation Rotation has had some bright spots this spring also though, and who knows, may yet be a pleasant surprise. Hope springs eternal.