Bench Byron Buxton for Remainder of Spring Training

Photo: @Twins - Twitter

When the Minnesota Twins signed Carlos Correa over the weekend, they showed a financial commitment to short-term success like we haven’t seen in the team’s history. Now, there is still a lot of work to do on their unfinished roster, but the front office still has plenty of money with which to operate. There’s a feeling of hope in the air.

But on Tuesday afternoon, in the first inning of a meaningless Spring Training contest between the Twins and Atlanta Braves, star centerfielder, Byron Buxton, put all of those good vibes in jeopardy with a beautiful, miraculous, VIOLENT, homerun-saving catch that plastered him face-first into the outfield wall, ball in glove.

Please, Byron, Stop.

The greatness of this catch can only be rivaled by that of its own stupidity. I would like Byron Buxton to stop violently running into walls during ALL games. Saving that one out, no matter how many runs might score, is not worth the collateral damage of the Minnesota Twins losing Byron from their lineup. In a big spot, during a regular season game, I can understand why Buxton might see reality differently.

But in a Spring Training game… Are you fucking kidding me? How many times does Byron Buxton have to go through injury rehab before he realizes his body cannot handle that kind of violence? It only takes one wrong angle and the Twins’ hope for 2022 would be dashed.

Carlos Correa or no Carlos Correa, a healthy Byron Buxton is the most dangerous player on the Minnesota Twins’ roster. Without him, they’re just a bad team that Carlos Correa happens to play for. That’s why, if Buck isn’t willing to pull back the throttle during these meaningless exhibition games, then Baldelli and the Twins should do it for him.

Protect Byron Buxton From Himself

Bench him. You aren’t punishing him. You’re just saving him from himself. What’s he going to do? Un-sign the $100 million contract he inked before the lockout? There’s a reason why many NFL head coaches and organizations keep their best and most injury susceptible players off the field for, sometimes, the entire preseason. Risking their regular season health isn’t worth the advantage you or the player receives from being out there during games that don’t matter.

Normally, you worry less about those types of injuries in baseball. But Byron Buxton has proven over and over again that he cannot be trusted to avoid contact, no matter the situation or time of year. And his health is too important, given these games don’t matter.

Eric Strack | Minnesota Sports Fan