Friday, May 28, 2010

The legend of the Knoblauch

Back in 1991, the Twins had a young rookie 2nd baseman that looked a little like Joe Pantoliano from The Fugitive (though the movie would come out a couple years later). He eventually won the Rookie of the Year award while helping guide the Twins to the World Series in 1991. That youngster, of course, was Chuck Knoblauch.
Eventually, he became discontented in Minnesota and was traded in the offseason before the 1998 season to the New York Yankees. To this day, the trade is impacting his former team, no matter what angry battery throwers may want to think. Let's follow the family tree from the Knobby trade.
DANIEL MOTA - Eh, nothing.
CRISTIAN GUZMAN - He was eventually a decent top of the order spark of energy that helped the Twins with their early 2000s turnaround. Eventually went to Washington via free agency.
ERIC MILTON - Milton threw a no no for the Twins and was eventually traded to the Phillies for pitchers Carlos Silva, Bobby Korecky and infielder Nick Punto. Silva was a decent enough #2 in the rotation for a while, as Milton had been, and Bobby Korecky even had a few good appearances as a reliever before being selected by the Diamondbacks on waivers. Punto, for better or worse, is still on the team as the starting 3b.
BRIAN BUCHANAN - This is perhaps the most curious inclusion. He wasn't terribly effective with the Twins, and was eventually traded to give more PT to Michael Cuddyer and Dustan Mohr. They acquired a young shortstop from the Padres named Jason Bartlett. After beginning to emerge with the Twins, Bartlett was eventually packaged with Matt Garza and Eduardo Morlan and sent to the Rays for Jason Pridie (now with the Mets), Brendan Harris, still doing yeoman's work as a utility infielder and Delmon Young, a former number one pick and one of the better right handed bats the Twins have.
So, the remaining legacy of Chuck Knoblauch is Nick Punto, Brendan Harris and Delmon Young. Not bad 12 years later. (By the way, Delmon Young was 5 years old when Knobby made his debut)

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