There are certain words that are synonymous with struggling or rebuilding teams. Two have been used frequently in recent months as the Twins transition to new manager Paul Molitor.
One word is leadership, which has been a topic ever since Torii Hunter was signed. The other came up a lot Friday as Molitor addressed the full squad for the first time.
"He's stresses accountability," third baseman Trevor Plouffe said. "He talked about doing the little things right, and we really are going to address those little things. You can say it as much as you want, but we're putting that into action. And I think because of that we will be able to accomplish some things on the field we haven't the last couple of years."
Molitor's speech stressed many things, including promptness and paying attention to details. It doesn't hurt that a Hall a Famer is standing in the room, commanding attention.
"He made his points," righthander Phil Hughes said. "We have rules in place. He's not a hall monitor, though. No facial hair rules. Just keep it professional, he said. He mostly talked about what we're all setting out to do here, some goals, some things he expects. He made himself heard. There's a lot of respect here."
Molitor will permit the use of phones or other devices in the clubhouse until 30 minutes before game time. There were other procedural issues he addressed as well. For instance, he would like more players on the field for the national anthem.
General Manager Terry Ryan, Director of Baseball Communications and Player Relations Dustin Morse and Director of Team Travel Mike Herman also spoke during the 90-minute meeting.
"Today we talked about if you have the ability or the desire to do the right thing it takes care of a lot of rules," Molitor said. "And I think we're going to try to cultivate that."
One idea pitching coach Neil Allen brought with him from the Rays organization: a get-to-know-you session between pitchers and catchers.
With no bullpen sessions scheduled Friday, the Twins had pitchers and catchers introduce themselves to each other and talk for a while. The idea is to get on the same page as far as to what each pitcher's repertoire is, pitch selection, etc.
"It was like speed dating," Molitor said.
The Twins and agents for Johan Santana did speak about a possible reunion this offseason. But the sides discovered it wasn't the right fit. Santana, trying to come back from shoulder surgery in 2013 and a torn Achilles in 2014, signed a minor league deal with Toronto on Thursday.
Saturday will be the first official full-squad workout, which means the first live batting practice sessions. Pitchers normally are ahead of hitters at this time of year.
2014 stats: 232 average, three home runs, 38 RBI for Class A Cedar Rapids.
Acquired: Drafted in the fifth round out of Wichita State in 2011.
Role: Backup catcher at Class AA or starter at Class A.
Did you know? Grimes was drafted as a shortstop but slowly has been converted to catcher, and he's in camp solely to catch. Could play the infield during the season.
La Velle E. Neal III