Jump to content

Providing independent coverage of the Minnesota Twins.
Subscribe to Twins Daily Email

The Forums

Alex Meyer

Other Baseball Today, 01:33 AM
Meyer logged another poor start for the Angels last night. He had a poor one in AAA prior, but the Angels apparently needed an arm to fil...
Full topic ›

Article: Miguel Sano Could Really Make This Work

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 01:33 AM
Through their first 41 games, Miguel Sano has been nothing short of a monster for the Minnesota Twins. He's been every bit the offensive...
Full topic ›

It's over. Post your offseason plan

Minnesota Timberwolves Talk Today, 01:33 AM
From what I can tell, here's what we have to look forward to:   Either the sixth or seventh pick in the draft.   Lots of cap sp...
Full topic ›

Eduardo Del Rosario - 2017

Adopt A Prospect 2017 Yesterday, 11:46 PM
Eduardo Del Rosario, 21, was a late-2012 international signing by the Twins out of the Dominican Republic.   Del Rosario started the...
Full topic ›

Trevor May: Writer

Minnesota Twins Talk Yesterday, 11:46 PM
Check out this cool article at MLB trade rumors https://www.mlbtrade...-you-think.html
Full topic ›

2017 Twins Player Predictions: The Designated Hitters

Twins fans and players alike were surprised to hear the news on Thursday that Byungho Park had been reassigned to Twins minor league camp. Robbie Grossman would enter the season as the primary DH, though the position will likely have many players.

Today, we make some predictions for the DH Types that we think will see time with the Twins in 2017. Robbie Grossman gets first crack. Kennys Vargas is expected to start the season in Rochester, but he’s on the 40-man roster. Byungho Park will also start in Rochester, but he is not on the 40-man roster.
Image courtesy of Seth Stohs, Twins Daily
How will the playing time be allocated among these three players throughout the season? What will Park need to do in Rochester to get himself back on the 40-man roster? This is the most difficult prediction since there are three players. They all can and will play other positions at times too.

I’ll post my predictions, but be sure to post your thoughts and your predictions into the comments below. It will be fun to take a look at the end of the season and see how our predictions look.


KEY NUMBERS

.252/.333/.421 (.754) - Those are the slash line numbers for Twins DHs in 2016. The batting average ranked seventh in the AL. The on-base percentage ranked sixth in the AL. The slugging percentage ranked 11th of 15 AL teams. While RBI are not a category we look at often, the team ranked 15th of 15 teams in driving batters in. So while the batting average and on-base stats look fine, the Twins DHs in 2016 lacked power.


PREDICTIONS

Robbie Grossman: 259 at-bats, .262/.329/.347 (.676), 13 doubles, 1 triples, 7 home runs.
Byungho Park: 466 at-bats, .242/.314/.487 (.801), 20 doubles, 1 triples, 24 home runs.
Kennys Vargas: 213 at-bats, .216/.295/.352 (.647), 8 doubles, 0 triples, 7 home runs.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Robbie Grossman destroyed left-handed pitching in 2016. I think he’ll continue to do that, though not at the same rate. I have him slated for 80 games. I believe that the Twins will go to 12 pitchers in the near future and bring up a DH type. That will put Grossman in a more traditional fourth outfielder role, though I think he’ll still DH a lot against lefties, or he should.

Kennys Vargas had a good three week period in 2016, but overall, it was a disappointing season for the slugger. The Twins lobbied for and received an extra optio year for Vargas, allowing him to spend time in 2017 in Rochester. I have him playing in 80 games for the Twins also.

While most are disappointed that Park did not make the Opening Day roster, I think that he can take off if he remains healthy. I think he’ll be back up fairly quick, and I have him with 110 games played between DH and first base. I have him hitting for a lot of power, though the batting average remains low.

YOUR TURN

Your turn. Share your thoughts on and predictions on Grossman, Vargas and Park in 2017. We can take a look back at the end of the season and see how we did.

PREVIOUS PREDICTIONS

Jason Castro
Joe Mauer
Brian Dozier
Miguel Sano
Jorge Polanco
Eddie Rosario
Byron Buxton
Max Kepler


  • Share:
  • submit to reddit
Subscribe to Twins Daily Email

Subscribe to Twins Daily Email

24 Comments

I think you about nailed it Seth, though I could see both Grossman, if used properly as a RH hitter, and Park with slightly higher BA and OB. Park hit a little better than listed above when healthy at the begining of 2016 and has apparently shown improvement.

I think games played, and all numbers, are going to be predicated a bit by Mauer and his health. Not picking on Mauer, and more days off will probably help, but he does seem to miss time every year with at least one injury.

Really need to get down to that 12 man staff ASAP.
    • mikelink45 likes this

I'd increase the at-bats for Grossman, decrease the at bats for Park.  Vargas has had some rough stints for the Twins, but I can't imagine him ever hitting as low as .216 over 200+ at bats.  I'd peg him closer to .240-.250 but still having trouble finding his place on this roster.  I hope at least one of the three can surprise us.

Does Vargas hit better as a RHB or LHB? We know that Grossman is way better as a RHB and really should only start against LHPs. How about Park? I feel like the Twins don't have a great DH option against RHPs (the majority of DH ABs).

 

Does Vargas hit better as a RHB or LHB? We know that Grossman is way better as a RHB and really should only start against LHPs. How about Park? I feel like the Twins don't have a great DH option against RHPs (the majority of DH ABs).

 

Vargas also hits much better as a RHB against LHP.

 

For what it's worth, Park hit right handed pitching better than left handed pitching last year. It's a small sample (183 PA against righties, 62 AB against lefties) but them's the numbers.

    • Oldgoat_MN and Dozier's Glorious Hair like this
Photo
bluechipper
Apr 02 2017 10:18 AM

 

I'd increase the at-bats for Grossman, decrease the at bats for Park.  Vargas has had some rough stints for the Twins, but I can't imagine him ever hitting as low as .216 over 200+ at bats.  I'd peg him closer to .240-.250 but still having trouble finding his place on this roster.  I hope at least one of the three can surprise us.

Well Vargas hit just .233 in 402 PA at Rochester last year, and he also hit .179 in winter league. I don't have much confidence in him at this point.

    • Vanimal46 likes this
Photo
Brock Beauchamp
Apr 02 2017 11:16 AM
Surprisingly low on Grossman and Vargas. Not that you're wrong, just a bit surprised.
    • Oldgoat_MN and jud6312 like this
Vargas has a long ways to go to prove he could be a full time DH. I doubt he's on this team next season.

Park's projection is aggressive. Hope you're right.

If Grossman is hitting at a .676 OPS clip, then he shouldn't get 200 ABs and should be released. His defense was/is horrendous. If he doesn't match his offensive performance last year he has negative value on this team.

This is a puzzle that leaves me very confused.  Considering the players and their abilities and injuries I expect Park to be there.  I do not see April with its lighter schedule being the time to have so many pitchers, and all spring we heard about Mauer getting more rest.  Now I am thinking that April 15 is when we will see the real Twins roster - not now.  So it depends upon injuries, how Vargas does in AAA and if Park still is slugging in the minors.  

 

Trying to explore the injury rates in MLB April is the month of the most injuries https://www.ncbi.nlm...pubmed/21709023 so highest likelihood of call ups until roster expands in September.  For a look at the costs of injuries I found this to be a very interesting report - http://www.mdedge.com/amjorthopedics/article/106556/sports-medicine/injury-trends-major-league-baseball-over-18-seasons

 

If Mauer or Grossman or one of the outfielders gets injured Park and Vargas will be up quickly, if not I fear Vargas will linger in the minors and eventually move on. 

Vargas also hits much better as a RHB against LHP.

For what it's worth, Park hit right handed pitching better than left handed pitching last year. It's a small sample (183 PA against righties, 62 AB against lefties) but them's the numbers.

Mauer's OPS is better against righties .793 to .610 vs lefties. Hes my pick for most DH at bats this year at 350. Pretty quickly Park will make his case to get added to the 40 and play a big chunk of first base, but still get 200 ABs at DH

Seth, I'm actually quite surprised and impressed at the realistic-looking numbers you have with Robbie.

 

You seemed more high on him than virtually anyone last year, so I expected higher everything in your projections.

It seems crazy that Park would hit 24 home runs in half of a season. Are you sure that's not a typo?

I think most everyone here is overrating Grossman. He's not going to come close to matching last year. Low .700s OPS, tops.

Park will be the regular DH, and soon. 775-800 OPS
    • Oldgoat_MN likes this

I'm curious to see how long a look the Twins need for Park at AAA. Considering they removed him from the 40-man and that he also cleared waivers means he wasn't necessarily fitting into the plans of the new administration.

 

For Vargas, it was his job to lose and he lsot it. I look at a rewarding career for him overseas. Do the Twins send him there or does he go there himself. Better yet, does he stay in the Twins organization this season.

 

I don't see Grossman as a DH at-all. I see Mauer and Sano getting at bats in the position. But the flip side, right now, is "Who's on First" and "Who's on Third." Suddenly the though of having Trevor Plouffe as a bench player looks mighty tempting, especially at the salary he signed with the A's, which the Twins could've done if they had parted company i August.

 

They have no one to play first (Kepler?) and I don't want to see Escobar at third, ever, never.

 

Yes, at this point it would be nice to have the bat of Park, if he does hit for the power, and the ability of Park to play better than even Mauer at first. But we suddenly see the folly in dreaming of a great year for the Twins. They have weak catching at the plate, no bench whatsoever, the question of Sano at third of fulltime DH (but then who plays third) and the elephant in the room -- Joe Mauer. Will he be the Mauer of Real Old or just an aging Mauer of the now.

 

And I can't wait to see the new batting order and how many times it changes in the first week/first month.

 

Who are the mid-season managerial candidates for the Twins to look at? Is there any longterm hope for Dougie or Jake to become a Twins manager, or where the powers-that-be go outside the organization?

 

Is here a Fire Sale happening soon!?

 

 

 

Photo
Brock Beauchamp
Apr 02 2017 02:09 PM

 

I think most everyone here is overrating Grossman. He's not going to come close to matching last year. Low .700s OPS, tops.

I don't know if I'm overrating him but if he can do two things, I want him on the roster:

 

1. OPS against lefties at a .750 or higher clip, subbing for either Kepler or Rosario on a regular basis

2. Play acceptable defense, something he was able to do until last season according to advanced metrics (lots of SSS here)

 

His career OPS against lefties is .776, which was obviously helped by last season. In 2014/15, he was bad against LHP. In 2013, he was good. SSS for all seasons when you get down to it.

 

Anyway, my thinking is that Grossman doesn't have to be good to help this team, he only needs to fill in for other players' weaknesses and be acceptable in the role.

 

Time will tell whether he can live up to that relatively low standard.

I know this is unrelated to this article... but listening to Def Leppard is getting me hyped for Opening Day right now

I have no idea. They cut Park, and tried to sign a DH. I am guessing the team has the twelfth best DH at the end of the year. I don't think they like their options.

I don't know if I'm overrating him but if he can do two things, I want him on the roster:

1. OPS against lefties at a .750 or higher clip, subbing for either Kepler or Rosario on a regular basis
2. Play acceptable defense, something he was able to do until last season according to advanced metrics (lots of SSS here)

His career OPS against lefties is .776, which was obviously helped by last season. In 2014/15, he was bad against LHP. In 2013, he was good. SSS for all seasons when you get down to it.

Anyway, my thinking is that Grossman doesn't have to be good to help this team, he only needs to fill in for other players' weaknesses and be acceptable in the role.

Time will tell whether he can live up to that relatively low standard.

If he's subbing for Kepler or Rosario against LH pitching, he's not DHing. If he's DHing, both Rosario and Kepler (and Mauer) are in the lineup against LHers. Or Santana, I guess, which doesn't thrill me.

I don't see how that helps much. If they want to give him a try as the fourth OFer, I'm fine with that, even if I think he'll eventually fail. But he doesn't help at DH, They need a RH DH/1b...
    • DocBauer, Vanimal46 and jud6312 like this

If he's subbing for Kepler or Rosario against LH pitching, he's not DHing. If he's DHing, both Rosario and Kepler (and Mauer) are in the lineup against LHers. Or Santana, I guess, which doesn't thrill me.
I don't see how that helps much. If they want to give him a try as the fourth OFer, I'm fine with that, even if I think he'll eventually fail. But he doesn't help at DH, They need a RH DH/1b...


Yep. Not that it's a great benchmark but it sure is a better bench if Grossman is on it and DH and part time OF.
Photo
LeatherAntenna
Apr 02 2017 06:52 PM

I'm curious to see how long a look the Twins need for Park at AAA. Considering they removed him from the 40-man and that he also the A's, which the Twins could've done if they had parted company in.....
 
Yes, at this point it would be nice to have the bat of Park, if he does hit for the power, and the ability of Park to play better than even Mauer.......
 
And I can't wait to see the new batting order and how many times it changes......
 
Who are the mid-season managerial candidates for the Twins......
 
Is here a Fire Sale happening soon!?

. Wow. You really lob'ed quite a lot out there with this post. Might be nice to see Kepler at first. I didn't see a lot of ST so I don't know if he was even practiced their? Mauer will likely be a disappointment to many of us, but that isn't new. Hoping Park is a pleasant surprise, I want and expect serious contribution from him. I have nothing solid to base it on, just as no one else does either. But just maybe he is better then we know and he just had to adjust to MLB, looking initially very nice and then pulling a 'Colabello' getting hurt and tail spinning down his production.

 

I don't know if I'm overrating him but if he can do two things, I want him on the roster:

 

1. OPS against lefties at a .750 or higher clip, subbing for either Kepler or Rosario on a regular basis

2. Play acceptable defense, something he was able to do until last season according to advanced metrics (lots of SSS here)

 

His career OPS against lefties is .776, which was obviously helped by last season. In 2014/15, he was bad against LHP. In 2013, he was good. SSS for all seasons when you get down to it.

 

Anyway, my thinking is that Grossman doesn't have to be good to help this team, he only needs to fill in for other players' weaknesses and be acceptable in the role.

 

Time will tell whether he can live up to that relatively low standard.

Having been in attendance for the 2-error botch job Robert had last year, if he even smells the warning track dirt this season Molitor's job should on the line.

 

He's not just bad defensively, he's laughably, offensively bad out there. Bad angles, poor speed, bad judgement, below average arm. Other than throw himself in front of a screaming line drive to knock it down, I don't see what he brings to the table in the field.

38 HR out of the DH spot? I'll take it.

    • Doomtints likes this
Photo
Brock Beauchamp
Apr 03 2017 01:16 PM

 

Having been in attendance for the 2-error botch job Robert had last year, if he even smells the warning track dirt this season Molitor's job should on the line.

 

He's not just bad defensively, he's laughably, offensively bad out there. Bad angles, poor speed, bad judgement, below average arm. Other than throw himself in front of a screaming line drive to knock it down, I don't see what he brings to the table in the field.

He was terrible last season, no one is denying that... But he wasn't terrible in previous seasons, at least according to the metrics. That leaves us two options:

 

1. Something went disastrously wrong with Grossman in 2016 and it's possible that something can be fixed

2. The metrics were either wrong or didn't have enough sample size to accurately evaluate him

 

Either is possible.

    • mikecgrimes and jud6312 like this
Photo
ashburyjohn
Apr 03 2017 06:07 PM

 

He was terrible last season, no one is denying that... But he wasn't terrible in previous seasons, at least according to the metrics. That leaves us two options:

 

1. Something went disastrously wrong with Grossman in 2016 and it's possible that something can be fixed

2. The metrics were either wrong or didn't have enough sample size to accurately evaluate him

 

Either is possible.

The eye test has me leaning toward #2, although admittedly that is also SSS.

Photo
Brock Beauchamp
Apr 04 2017 06:02 AM

 

The eye test has me leaning toward #2, although admittedly that is also SSS.

Agreed, but he made *so many* horrible plays last season - balls hit right at him that he missed - that I struggle to understand how the metrics would have missed them in previous seasons if his glove is truly made of lead.


Similar Articles


by Seth Stohs , 24 May 2017
Photo


by Cody Christie , 21 May 2017
Photo


by Seth Stohs , 11 May 2017
Photo


by Cody Christie , 04 May 2017
Photo


by Cody Christie , 23 Apr 2017
Photo