Missed on the prediction that Miguel Sano would start the season in Rochester. He will instead be in rehab.
While many fans are gnashing their teeth at the Twins medical staff for “once again failing to diagnose correctly”, I think that is an unfair characterization. According to at least one report, Sano got a second opinion that concurred on the recommendation to rest the elbow. As young as he is, the healing process often is done with rest.
Either way, he will be undergoing Tommy John surgery in the next couple of weeks and they will be on the long road of recovery – estimated to be about eight months. There seems to be some optimism on some fronts that he could DH toward the end of the minor league season then play in the Arizona Fall League or the Dominican winter league. That all remains to be seen.
The result for the Twins in 2014 is third base could be a major hole if Trevor Plouffe does not develop into the all-round player needed at that position. There are no real alternatives for anything other than stop-gap play unless the Twins trade for someone to fill the hole and give Plouffe some genuine competition, something he has not really had since being put at third base.
The more I think about the situation, the more I believe it is time to trade for an alternative. In fact, I would decide now to convert Sano to a first baseman so when he begins rehab he can begin to work on the position change. His elbow would not get near the stress in that position and his bat could get into the big league lineup quicker. How to juggle the Twins lineup and roster to make that happen can be discussed later, but I find it difficult to see how keeping Sano at third base does him or the Twins much good.