The Twins signed 38-year old righty swinging Jamey Carroll over the winter to be their starting SS in 2012. Carroll played in 146 games for the Dodgers last year and he was 131 of 452 (.290 avg, .706 OPS) with 52 runs scored, 0 homers, 17 RBIs and 10 stolen bases. He has now played in 1,065 games in his first 10 years in the majors and he is 826 for 2,974 (.278 avg, .704 OPS) with 469 runs scored, 12 homers, 214 RBIs and 63 stolen bases. Carroll played in 66 games at SS for the Dodgers last year and he made 4 errors while showing pretty awful range. If Carroll can hit around .280 and make the plays he can get to, the Twins will be happy with him.
27-year old switch-hitting Tsuyoshi Nishioka was a complete bust as a rookie for the Twins in 2011. He played in 68 games for the Twins last year and he was 50 for 221 (.226 avg, .527 OPS) with 14 runs scored, 0 homers, 19 RBIs and 2 stolen bases. Nishioka also made a stunning 10 errors in 60 games at SS for the Twins last year, but he did show pretty good range. He is going to have to have a good spring to ensure he doesn’t start the 2012 season in AAA.
25-year old righty swinging Trevor Plouffe had a rough time at SS last year for the Twins. He had 11 errors in only 45 games at SS last year while showing awful range. He is likely going to get most of his P.T. for the Twins in the outfield in 2012.
PROJECTED GRADE FOR THE SS IN 2012: C