Thursday, November 12, 2009
Glen Perkins’ Grievance is Settled, His Future in Minnesota is Not
Glen Perkins has dropped his grievance against the Minnesota Twins.
The two sides were able to reach a settlement earlier today, thus avoiding the hearing that was planned for this Friday in New York.
The grievance came as a result of the Twins’ decision to option Perkins to Triple-A Rochester after activating him from the disabled list at the end of August.
Perkins and his agent felt that he should have remained on the major league roster and been sent on a minor league rehabilitation assignment rather than being sent to the minors.
The grievance insinuated that the Twins had sent him to Rochester in an attempt to keep him from qualifying as a “Super 2” at season’s end.
Had Perkins qualified as a “Super 2” he would have been arbitration-eligible at the end of last year, rather than having to complete three years of big league service to qualify.
As it stands, Perkins won’t be eligible for arbitration—and the big payday that accompanies it—until after 2010.
Sources believe that the settlement gave the lefty some of the service time he feels he was cheated out of, but not enough to qualify for arbitration.
With the grievance now settled, the Twins can decide what’s next for Perkins.
It is widely-believed that Perkins is a candidate to be traded this offseason and I’d be hard-pressed to disagree with that assessment.
As a result of the grievance, Perkins burned many bridges and now finds himself in the doghouse with a lot of people in the organization.
As such, a trade is probably the best solution for both sides, but what does Perkins have to offer in a trade?
Perkins, 26, has been part of the club’s starting rotation for the past two seasons and was a member of the bullpen to begin and end the season in 2007.
In that time Perkins has been a mixed bag on the mound.
He’s had starts where he looks absolutely brilliant and starts where he looks like a pee-wee league reject.
His lack of consistency has been absolutely maddening to Twins’ fans who don’t know if they’re going to get an eight-inning gem out of Dr. Jekyll or a two-inning implosion from Mr. Hyde.
Despite his inconsistency, Perkins is a very good pitcher.
In a mechanical sense, that is.
He has a three pitch repertoire that consists of a low-to-mid 90s fastball, a very good changeup, and a biting curveball that he can toss with a hard or a slow break. He has tremendous control with all of his pitches and—when he is on—can be nearly unhittable.
In addition to his “raw stuff,” Perkins also has stamina, not commonly found in young pitchers with limited big league experience.
Of his 17 starts in 2009, Perkins went six innings or more ten times and pitched into the seventh inning or deeper seven times.
In 2008, he was even more impressive. Perkins made 26 starts and pitched to the sixth inning or beyond in 17 of those starts.
Clearly, all of the parts of the equation are there, but Perkins simply hasn’t figured it all out.
He will, undoubtedly, be a tough-sell coming off a lackluster season, but his natural talent cannot be overlooked.
Perkins would make a lot of sense for many National League clubs, where his lack of an overpowering fastball would be less of an issue.
The NL is widely-regarded as the lighter-hitting of the two leagues and many pitchers have seen their numbers, and overall value, increase by moving to the senior circuit.
The Twins figure to have many irons in the fire this winter and could conceivably include Perkins in any offer.
Although it is the logical move, it would still be a shame to lose someone with the talent he possesses.
He has the stamina and the ability to be a legitimate front of the rotation starter, but hasn’t yet put it all together with the Twins.
Given his falling out with the club it is likely that the Stillwater, Minnesota, native won’t ever get the chance to put it all together with his hometown team.