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jorgenswest
07-20-2012, 11:56 AM
As the Twins approach the trade deadline, they will do so with an eye on the future in mind.

I see these options as they build towards 90.

Option 1: Seek players who can contribute next year and go for 90 wins.

As they look at their roster with the current budget, can they reasonably expect to build a 90+ win team next year?

If so, they need to add pieces that will help next year.
They will need to choose lower upside AA/AAA players rather than a higher upside A Ball player.
They will need to retain players under contract who can contribute next year (Span, Willingham, Doumit for example).
Consider trading high upside A-Ball prospect for players ready to play in 2013

Option 2: Seek players to complement the wave of younger prospects.

If expecting a 90+ win team isn't reasonable in 2013, they can try to build for the future 90 win team

They seek higher upside players further from the majors.
They retain players who are likely to contribute in 2014-2015.
They sell high players in their 30s that can be expected to decline by 2014.
They need to invest at bats in younger players with the knowledge that they will struggle as they develop

Option 3: Shoot to build a competitive team (Instead of shooting for 90, shoot for 81)

I think the goal of the 2013 team was to be competitive.
They need to keep the upside prospects.
They need to sign players entering decline to team friendly contracts.
They need to trade pieces that are not under team control for 2013

I don't think 90+ wins is a reasonable expectation for next year. I would build for 2014 and beyond. I would see high players that have value and are over 30.

In the context of the AL central, the option of building a competitive team is the direction I expect them to take again. A compeititive .500 level team will sometimes win 88 games. They also might win 73. It is very possible to enter a cycle of mediocrity when trying to patch together a competitive team year after year. On the other hand, someone will win the AL central next year. It is likely that team will not advance in the playoffs. If we hadn't had a taste of the playoffs for several years, I would advocate for this direction.

I want them to build the next Twin team to win a playoff series. I think the quickest route to that win given their current midmarket budget is to build long term and trade high their valuable players this July. I can endure a poor 2013 season if there is more hope for the future.

Brock Beauchamp
07-20-2012, 12:09 PM
I try not to think in terms of wins... I try to think "competitive" or "not competitive". The playoffs are a crapshoot. The best teams usually win but that's not always the case. If you think you can get to the playoffs without looting the farm, I believe in trying to do it.

Put yourself in a spot to be competitive as often as possible and then in years where a piece is missing, you shore up the team at the deadline. Building up for a "run at it in 20xx" has the tendency to lead you down the path of the Pittsburgh Pirates and Kansas City Royals.

With that said, everything depends on what Ryan has for a budget in 2013. If he thinks he can afford a good starter or two, then this team might be competitive next season. But I think that's unlikely.

That doesn't change my opinion on trading Span, though. The Twins are starting to build a logjam in the high minors. Span is expendable at this point and that's how mid-market teams stay competitive... You trade off excess when possible to keep the farm healthy. One of Parmelee/Hicks/Benson/Arcia is going to be ready relatively soon and picking up a stop-gap for 2013 if they aren't ready is one of the easier things to do in baseball.

Mayhem25
07-20-2012, 12:44 PM
Option #2 all the way. They can't even think about contending until they have an idea of what the rotation will look like beyond even next year.

jorgenswest
07-20-2012, 01:47 PM
I try not to think in terms of wins... I try to think "competitive" or "not competitive". The playoffs are a crapshoot. The best teams usually win but that's not always the case. If you think you can get to the playoffs without looting the farm, I believe in trying to do it.

Competitive - Is it a team that is expected be win around .500? Is it a team that around the trading deadline has an outside chance of making a playoff run? That's my definition.

Brock Beauchamp
07-20-2012, 01:49 PM
Competitive - Is it a team that is expected be win around .500? Is it a team that around the trading deadline has an outside chance of making a playoff run? That's my definition.

I think "competitive" is any team that expects to compete for the division. Thankfully, the Twins play in the AL Central and most years, that doesn't take much.

nicksaviking
07-20-2012, 02:23 PM
I'm glad to see this was a glass half-full post. Negativity had set in and I thought it was going to be a glass half-empty post in referrence to an expected 90 loss season.

PseudoSABR
07-20-2012, 02:35 PM
Poorly titled thread, honestly....

kab21
07-20-2012, 04:27 PM
Put yourself in a spot to be competitive as often as possible and then in years where a piece is missing, you shore up the team at the deadline. Building up for a "run at it in 20xx" has the tendency to lead you down the path of the Pittsburgh Pirates and Kansas City Royals.


I keep seeing this thrown out there and I think it is complete bull. Awful drafting (sometimes to save money) and signing crappy veterans while never committing to rebuilding leads you down the path of the Pirates and Royals. It wasn't until a few years ago that both of these teams committed to building a farm system despite having early picks for over a decade. I would in fact contend that many are proposing going down the road that Cubs/Mets went down for a long time. Neither team committed towards rebuilding and tried to spend their way out of the cellar.

The Twins can sign a FA or two but the plan has to be on building for a run 2014+ and avoiding long contracts to 30 something year old average (now) pitchers.

Thrylos
07-20-2012, 06:57 PM
I try not to think in terms of wins... I try to think "competitive" or "not competitive". The playoffs are a crapshoot.

I think that this is one of the most inaccurate truisms around baseball... The Twins have reached the postseason in the 00s plenty of times with nothing to show. If it were a crapshoot, there would be equal possibilities of winning the ALDS and losing the ALDS, equal but half of those the possibilities of winning the ALCS and losing the ALCS, and equal but a quarter the original possibilities of winning the WS and losing the WS.

So we have 50% for winning the ALDS, 25% for winning the ALCS and 12.5% for winning the World Series (just math).

So if the dice were not loaded, a team that reached the post-season 6 times (like the Twins this millennium), would have gone to the ALCS 3 times, to the WS one or two and would have been a World Champion 1 time. That is what should have happened if it were a crapshoot.

Looks like the Twins' dice are loaded. Maybe the Manager of the Millennium is the reason. But something's got to change.

If you look at the Yankees' run from 1996-2004, you'd see an example for Dice loaded the other way.

not a Crapshoot.

There are teams that are built to win in the postseason. The Twins have not been one of those and unless things change and people realize that it is not "luck", nada is going to change...

USAFChief
07-20-2012, 07:58 PM
I keep seeing this thrown out there and I think it is complete bull. Awful drafting (sometimes to save money) and signing crappy veterans while never committing to rebuilding leads you down the path of the Pirates and Royals. It wasn't until a few years ago that both of these teams committed to building a farm system despite having early picks for over a decade. I would in fact contend that many are proposing going down the road that Cubs/Mets went down for a long time. Neither team committed towards rebuilding and tried to spend their way out of the cellar.

The Twins can sign a FA or two but the plan has to be on building for a run 2014+ and avoiding long contracts to 30 something year old average (now) pitchers.


And I would contend THIS is complete bull.

They have been "committed to rebuilding" through the minors and young, cost controlled major leaguers for two decades. They have done as you recommend--sell off any and all real major league talent for minor leaguers and/or questionable major leaguers who happen to be young. They have done as you recommend...primarily stay out of the middle or high end of the free agent market, and gotten predictable results. The Royals "signed a FA or two" as part of a plan to contend "down the road" with Meche, who wasn't worth it at the time, and everyone including the Royals knew that.

What do they have to show for it?

Planning to "build for a run in 2014" is as much, if not more, than gambling on getting what you need to be competetive now. There is no guarantee "building for a run in 2014" will be successful in any way, shape or form, not to mention thinking the Twins minor league system is going to turn this into a WS contender by 2014 is pretty damned optomistic. Who in the Twins minor leagues is going to be an above average major league starter by 2014?

The most likely result of your plan is to punt 2013-2014 intentionally, in the vague hope that somehow the 2015 team will be cured by osmosis.

There is no reason the Twins can't do both. They have money. They can stretch payroll. There will be pitching available this winter that will still be around in 2015. The minor league magic that you're counting on for 2015 won't cost much, so that pitching they sigend this winter will still be affordable.

notoriousgod71
07-20-2012, 08:37 PM
I think that this is one of the most inaccurate truisms around baseball... The Twins have reached the postseason in the 00s plenty of times with nothing to show. If it were a crapshoot, there would be equal possibilities of winning the ALDS and losing the ALDS, equal but half of those the possibilities of winning the ALCS and losing the ALCS, and equal but a quarter the original possibilities of winning the WS and losing the WS.

So we have 50% for winning the ALDS, 25% for winning the ALCS and 12.5% for winning the World Series (just math).

So if the dice were not loaded, a team that reached the post-season 6 times (like the Twins this millennium), would have gone to the ALCS 3 times, to the WS one or two and would have been a World Champion 1 time. That is what should have happened if it were a crapshoot.

Looks like the Twins' dice are loaded. Maybe the Manager of the Millennium is the reason. But something's got to change.

If you look at the Yankees' run from 1996-2004, you'd see an example for Dice loaded the other way.

not a Crapshoot.

There are teams that are built to win in the postseason. The Twins have not been one of those and unless things change and people realize that it is not "luck", nada is going to change...

Teams that never win are the ones saying the playoffs are a crapshoot. Beane said it, we say it. You don't see Boston, New York, or Philadelphia saying it.

Brock Beauchamp
07-20-2012, 10:14 PM
I think that this is one of the most inaccurate truisms around baseball... The Twins have reached the postseason in the 00s plenty of times with nothing to show. If it were a crapshoot, there would be equal possibilities of winning the ALDS and losing the ALDS, equal but half of those the possibilities of winning the ALCS and losing the ALCS, and equal but a quarter the original possibilities of winning the WS and losing the WS.

So we have 50% for winning the ALDS, 25% for winning the ALCS and 12.5% for winning the World Series (just math).

So if the dice were not loaded, a team that reached the post-season 6 times (like the Twins this millennium), would have gone to the ALCS 3 times, to the WS one or two and would have been a World Champion 1 time. That is what should have happened if it were a crapshoot.

Looks like the Twins' dice are loaded. Maybe the Manager of the Millennium is the reason. But something's got to change.

If you look at the Yankees' run from 1996-2004, you'd see an example for Dice loaded the other way.

not a Crapshoot.

There are teams that are built to win in the postseason. The Twins have not been one of those and unless things change and people realize that it is not "luck", nada is going to change...

It's convenient that you cut out my next sentence, which read "The best teams usually win but that's not always the case." If you're going to argue with me, at least have the courtesy to quote my entire post and not cherry-pick sentences out of it to fit an argument I'm not trying to make. I mean, come on. You intentionally deleted that sentence right out of my post.

Baseball is more of a crapshoot than any other sport. It's why the best teams win 60% of their games instead of 80-90% like other sports.

Getting to the playoffs is the most important step. If you do it enough times, you're going to break through and win in baseball.

Thrylos
07-20-2012, 10:18 PM
It's convenient that you cut out my next sentence, which read "The best teams usually win but that's not always the case."

Baseball is more of a crapshoot than any other sport. It's why the best teams win 60% of their games instead of 80-90% like other sports.

Getting to the playoffs is the most important step. If you do it enough times, you're going to break through and win in baseball.

OK.

so your logical conclusion should be that since the Twins did not break through and win in the post-season, there must be something wrong with them. Correct? Unless 6 times in 9 years is not "enough".

So, if you are there enough times and did not break through? Gotta do something? Maybe? And add the cherry of 2 90 plus loss seasons after doing nada with the enough times, and sometimes maybe one gotta stop being Minny nice... Or something.

Brock Beauchamp
07-20-2012, 10:34 PM
OK.

so your logical conclusion should be that since the Twins did not break through and win in the post-season, there must be something wrong with them. Correct? Unless 6 times in 9 years is not "enough".

So, if you are there enough times and did not break through? Gotta do something? Maybe? And add the cherry of 2 90 plus loss seasons after doing nada with the enough times, and sometimes maybe one gotta stop being Minny nice... Or something.

Most years, they were beaten by superior teams. A couple of times, they choked. They've been on both sides of the "best team in the series" coin and have failed to come through every year after 2002.

I have no idea what that last paragraph even means.

Brock Beauchamp
07-20-2012, 10:46 PM
I keep seeing this thrown out there and I think it is complete bull. Awful drafting (sometimes to save money) and signing crappy veterans while never committing to rebuilding leads you down the path of the Pirates and Royals. It wasn't until a few years ago that both of these teams committed to building a farm system despite having early picks for over a decade. I would in fact contend that many are proposing going down the road that Cubs/Mets went down for a long time. Neither team committed towards rebuilding and tried to spend their way out of the cellar.

The Twins can sign a FA or two but the plan has to be on building for a run 2014+ and avoiding long contracts to 30 something year old average (now) pitchers.

The key difference being that the Twins have a solid young core of players from which to build around.

The Royals have been in a perpetual rebuilding cycle for well over a decade. They haven't tried to buy their way out of anything. They get a few good players and squander them on a crappy team before trading them off. The Mets and Cubs are in the positions they're in because neither team has bothered to draft actual Major League players in the past decade, not because they spent too much money.

You can't expect all your prospects to magically hit the majors at the same point and then suddenly become a good team. Part of building a good team involves using FA to your advantage and knowing when to double down and when to retreat. Right now, the Twins have several good young players (Diamond, Plouffe, Revere, Span, Perkins), several good vets (Doumit, Willingham), and a superstar in his prime (Mauer). What happens if you wait until 2015 or later? All of that is gone, except now you have an aging superstar who makes the same amount he made in his prime and eats up 1/4 of your roster salary.

The AL Central is awful nearly every year. It barely takes a winning record to compete in this division. But if the Twins can't compete in 2013, I'm fine with that. JR has said he's trying to get high upside guys over ready-for-the-show guys and I think it's a smart move. But you don't fold your hand if it's not necessary and I'm not convinced it's necessary yet. Not when you have a decent core of young players and a star player in his prime.

kab21
07-20-2012, 10:48 PM
And I would contend THIS is complete bull.

They have been "committed to rebuilding" through the minors and young, cost controlled major leaguers for two decades. They have done as you recommend--sell off any and all real major league talent for minor leaguers and/or questionable major leaguers who happen to be young. They have done as you recommend...primarily stay out of the middle or high end of the free agent market, and gotten predictable results. The Royals "signed a FA or two" as part of a plan to contend "down the road" with Meche, who wasn't worth it at the time, and everyone including the Royals knew that.


The Royals and the Pirates have been two of the most ineptly run franchises for the last two decades. If you followed teams other than the Twins you would know that they never committed to their farm systems usually taking the cheap route in the draft rather than the best talent and not spending internationally. Despite consistently having top picks both of these teams consistently had average to awful farm systems. The royals had 3 straight 100 game losing seasons when they signed Meche. They didn't sign him with illusions of competing. They signed him because they had money available and they wanted to spend it which is exactly what you are suggesting the Twins do. YOU DO NOT SPEND YOUR WAY OUT OF THE CELLAR. The Twins are bad/terrible and it's not going to get better until the Twins have more young players coming up than Revere/Plouffe.

peterb18
07-20-2012, 10:59 PM
And I would contend THIS is complete bull.

They have been "committed to rebuilding" through the minors and young, cost controlled major leaguers for two decades. They have done as you recommend--sell off any and all real major league talent for minor leaguers and/or questionable major leaguers who happen to be young. They have done as you recommend...primarily stay out of the middle or high end of the free agent market, and gotten predictable results. The Royals "signed a FA or two" as part of a plan to contend "down the road" with Meche, who wasn't worth it at the time, and everyone including the Royals knew that.

What do they have to show for it?

Planning to "build for a run in 2014" is as much, if not more, than gambling on getting what you need to be competetive now. There is no guarantee "building for a run in 2014" will be successful in any way, shape or form, not to mention thinking the Twins minor league system is going to turn this into a WS contender by 2014 is pretty damned optomistic. Who in the Twins minor leagues is going to be an above average major league starter by 2014?

The most likely result of your plan is to punt 2013-2014 intentionally, in the vague hope that somehow the 2015 team will be cured by osmosis.

There is no reason the Twins can't do both. They have money. They can stretch payroll. There will be pitching available this winter that will still be around in 2015. The minor league magic that you're counting on for 2015 won't cost much, so that pitching they sigend this winter will still be affordable.


I couldn't agree more with this analysis. Good job!

beckmt
07-20-2012, 11:17 PM
to compete in 2013 the Twins need at least 2 starting pitchers, a second baseman, one outfielder to produce from our minor leagues(assuming Span is traded). This assumes Linarno is traded or leaves after this year. 1 qualitity second baseman will not come cheap and two starting pitchers will cost between $25 and $30 million a year. Poland's will have to go the route of having to spend money to make money.
Even doing this will not guarantee 90+ wins.
If Terry Ryan sells this argument, he will be a mircle worker.
Best case is that the trades net 4 class A higher end prospect pitchers, outwise why make the deals. This would give the Twins the depth to have a possible decent rotation by 2014 - 2015. I would support this line.
More patching holes(recommended by some above is a losing proposition).
Take shots at will.

PseudoSABR
07-21-2012, 02:33 PM
The way the Brewers have been run of late is a good model, even if not perfect. They actually pursue frontline players both through trades and FAs, in spite of their expense. The Giants, Nats and Cards are others. I like what Colorado tends to do, but they ****ed up their pitching in inconceivable ways. TB and Atlanta are world class, but part of their success is continuity and they really never put themselves in the position to rebuild...

kab21
07-22-2012, 10:36 AM
Other than the Nats you didn't mention any teams that rebuilt recently. The rest of the teams have had good teams for quite awhile and have been bringing up impact players from the minors. The Twins are not and have not for awhile.

Shane Wahl
07-22-2012, 11:13 AM
Yikes, wish I didn't get to this discussion until only now. Lots of good stuff.

Shane Wahl
07-22-2012, 11:47 AM
First, I like breaking it down into those three options, though I wonder what the prediction you (the OP jorganswest) would make in terms of wins in 2014 if they actually pursue option A?

I mean, do you think that pursuing the first option really hurts their chances for 90+ wins in 2014? If not, and if done correctly, I think not, then why wait another year and sell off known good players right now?

The Royals and Pirates have been abominations. At least the Pirates seem to be committed to winning finally, and managed to get Andrew McCutcheon locked in through 2017 on a nice contract (he doesn't even make $10 million until 2015!).

I would like to see the Twins do something like:

Trades: Liriano and Morneau (probably Liriano at the deadline and Morneau in the offseason), Valencia, Casilla, some middle reliever in the minors like Guerra or Watts, and some one OF prospect (not sure who at the moment, but I would like them to keep Hicks and Arcia) FOR SP at all levels, which would include someone right now who is 26-28 and is still arb eligible for 2013 or even 2014 as well (someone good, obviously--I will get around to looking for these guys soon). That means a good SP for around 3-5 million in 2013 and 5-8 million in 2014 before he even becomes a free agent and the Twins have to make a decision. Add 2 more top 10 (by team) prospects in AA or below as well via trade.

FA signing: if they do the above, sign one FA starting pitcher for 10-15 million and 3-4 years. Anyone from Dempster to Marcum to Colby Lewis, whatever.

Promote Liam Hendriks after one more start in Rochester and just let him go. Another 65+ this year in the majors will make his 2013 time a lot better.

Sign Scott Baker to a base 1.5-2 million contract worth up to 6 million in incentives with a 1 million buyout and 8 million team option (it's strong because he could easily sign elsewhere).

Put Nick Blackburn on a short leash. Convert to MR if they have to do so. Watch the days on that contract go by and be excited.

This gives them
1: FA
2: Scott Diamond
3. Arb eligible SP acquired via trade
4. Liam Hendriks
5. Baker/Blackburn, eventually Gibson

Others in AAA, prospect acquired via trade, Bromberg, Walters, DeVries, Stuifbergen

old nurse
07-22-2012, 12:22 PM
I think that this is one of the most inaccurate truisms around baseball... The Twins have reached the postseason in the 00s plenty of times with nothing to show. If it were a crapshoot, there would be equal possibilities of winning the ALDS and losing the ALDS, equal but half of those the possibilities of winning the ALCS and losing the ALCS, and equal but a quarter the original possibilities of winning the WS and losing the WS.

So we have 50% for winning the ALDS, 25% for winning the ALCS and 12.5% for winning the World Series (just math).

So if the dice were not loaded, a team that reached the post-season 6 times (like the Twins this millennium), would have gone to the ALCS 3 times, to the WS one or two and would have been a World Champion 1 time. That is what should have happened if it were a crapshoot.

Looks like the Twins' dice are loaded. Maybe the Manager of the Millennium is the reason. But something's got to change.

If you look at the Yankees' run from 1996-2004, you'd see an example for Dice loaded the other way.

not a Crapshoot.

There are teams that are built to win in the postseason. The Twins have not been one of those and unless things change and people realize that it is not "luck", nada is going to change...
It is a crapshoot in terms of pitching and hitting. Who rises up. Certainly not Santana when he was here. 1-3 in the post season. Pavano 0-2. About the only rise above the ability pitching performance was Blackburn's to get into the playoffs. No Viola, Blyleven or Morris types. Garza might have been that type. Smith traded him for a can of tuna and a couple of smelt. No Twins batters with MVP seasons did a Puckett and carried a team. Do your star players rise in the playoffs. No bit player ever got hot like Lomardozi did in '87. For the Twins figuring out what player can rise is a crapshoot. Ryan built the Twins to win regular season games. Smith did not carry it on.

kab21
07-22-2012, 12:38 PM
The problem that I have with shane's plan of going for option A and B is that there are only a couple good arms at the lower levels (or any level) that will be coming up with a really strong offensive core. I'm all about focusing on 2014/2015 and avoiding a 10M Dempster who will likely completely suck at that time and take up payroll.

Shane Wahl
07-22-2012, 02:23 PM
The problem that I have with shane's plan of going for option A and B is that there are only a couple good arms at the lower levels (or any level) that will be coming up with a really strong offensive core. I'm all about focusing on 2014/2015 and avoiding a 10M Dempster who will likely completely suck at that time and take up payroll.

I don't know if Dempster will suck in 2015. He is old, but he isn't that old and he is still striking people out. But there are other options too.

The Twins have done a lot in the last two drafts to re-stock with good arms. and most of those pitchers are doing very well this year. If Salcedo and Soliman can get back to their paths in 2013 in Fort Myers, that will help the depth with Gibson, Bromberg, Hermsen, and Stuifbergen. (and who knows about Wimmers).

And of course, the idea is that they get 3 such players back in trades.

kab21
07-22-2012, 09:23 PM
Dempster is already 35 yrs old and he's been pitching in the NL. He's guaranteed to suck 3 yrs from now.

You've described a bunch of low upside prospects for the most part. The Twins also haven't done a lot to restock with good arms in the last 2 drafts. They got a few good arms in Berrios, Boyd and Boer but that's not restocking a farm system, that's maintaining the status quo.

Top Gun
07-22-2012, 09:37 PM
Crazy to think about 90 when you will never come close to 80.

70charger
07-22-2012, 10:28 PM
Crazy to think about 90 when you will never come close to 80.

Never? This is Twins Daily, not Royals Daily.

Brock Beauchamp
07-23-2012, 07:45 AM
Crazy to think about 90 when you will never come close to 80.

Depending on how this roster shakes out over the deadline, I wouldn't find it terribly surprising if the Twins ended this season with 72-75 wins. It's not much of a leap to suggest that with $25m in the offseason, the front office could tack on a few more wins to that total in 2013.

Shane Wahl
07-23-2012, 09:29 AM
Dempster is already 35 yrs old and he's been pitching in the NL. He's guaranteed to suck 3 yrs from now.

Well, his ERA has plummeted this year and his K/BB rate has improved. He is going the right direction for the beginning of a subsequent 3-year contract, at least. Again, he is not the only option. And by 2015, the idea would be to make a decision on the current arbitration guy and see how Gibson, Hendriks, and Diamond are at that point. And I wouldn't overlook Stuifbergen.


You've described a bunch of low upside prospects for the most part. The Twins also haven't done a lot to restock with good arms in the last 2 drafts. They got a few good arms in Berrios, Boyd and Boer but that's not restocking a farm system, that's maintaining the status quo.

Prior to this year, Salcedo and Soliman were top 15 prospects in the system. I agree that there isn't an ace in any of those guys mentioned, but in terms of an actual number 1, I did say that the Twins would be trading for at least two top starting pitching prospects.

I disagree that Berrios, Boyd, and Boer mean merely maintaining the status quo. Those are significant upside guys. Boer will be at Fort Myers again next year, at least to start. Boyd will be at Beloit, and Berrios could end there as well. That sets up a 2015 where those three guys could all be AA or higher.

SpiritofVodkaDave
07-23-2012, 09:48 AM
If we let Liriano go and give Ryan freaking Dempster 3 years/30 million my head just might explode.

Shane Wahl
07-23-2012, 10:04 AM
I did a quick scan of top ERA SPs for 2012 and here is a list of those either pre-arbitration or in arbitration:

Pitcher, team, FA year

Chris Sale, CHW 2017
Jarrod Parker, OAK, 2018 (?)
Matt Harrison, TEX, 2015
Tommy Milone, OAK, 2018
Jason Hammel, BAL, 2014
Jeremy Hellickson, TB, 2017

Jordan Zimmermann, WAS, 2016
James McDonald, PIT, 2016
Wade Miley, WAS, 2018
Lance Lynn, STL, 2018
Vance Worley, PHI, 2018
Clayton Richard, SDG, 2015

Siehbiscuit
07-23-2012, 11:38 AM
I think A LOT of this can be blamed on something other than the front office. Injuries to our top pitching prospects has crippled this team. Back in 2009, when Gibson was drafted, I am sure the FO thought that he would be the team's #2 or 3 starter right now if not sooner. Fast forward one year and the Twins draft another promising RHP Alex Wimmers that goes Rick Ankiel and is shut down for nearly all of 2011 and then in 2012 is on the verge of Tommy John. Scott Diamond has proven to be a great find as a Rule 5 pickup. But with a healthy Wimmers and Gibson, would the Twins have still made the move?


I would assume that the FO projections for the 2012 and 2013 seasons would have been closer to this following the 2010 draft:

2012 projections

#1 - Francisco Liriano. Liriano was in the midst of a great campaign and looked like the Liriano of old. (Fail - underperformed)
#2 - Scott Baker. Baker's stuff has always been very good. He just can't seem to stay healthy. (Bad Luck)
#3 - Carl Pavano. Pavano was going to be a free agent but had pitched well. He would be brought back on a 2 year deal (OK-1st year, bad luck - 2nd year)
#4 - Nick Blackburn. Blackburn was given a stupid and ridiculous contract so we knew he would be in the conversation. (Epic Fail)
#5 - Kevin Slowey. Slowey was better than Blackburn. Period. NB's contract assured him a rotation spot. Left Slowey out in the cold. Then he pouted. (Fail)
#6 - Kyle Gibson. Gibson was on the fast track to the majors and aside from a hiccup at AAA he had been excellent at every stop. (Bad Luck)
#7 - Glen Perkins. Perkins wasn't exactly in good graces, but he still had potential as a starter. As a reliever he has been very good. (OK)
#8 - Alex Wimmers. The FO probably thought that Wimmers would follow a similar path to the majors as Gibson. (Bad Luck)
#9 - Brian Duensing. FO awarded Duensing a rotation spot after a solid 2010 season, but at this time he was still a reliever. (OK)

2013

Likely gone: Liriano-unrestricted FA, Pavano UFA


Likely in the rotation:

Baker (team option) Slowey, Blackburn, Gibson, Wimmers

The plan wasn't terrible, but it wasn't the reason for total demise of the Twins rotation.
1. Baker cannot stay healthy and at that time (June of 2010) he hadn't been quite as fragile as he has been the last two years.
2. No one forsaw what happened with Slowey way back then either. He appeared to be a very solid #2-3 for years to come.
3. Blackburn sucks and he always has. Who knows what the FO was thinking here.
4. Gibson should have had a year and a half under his belt by now and would arguably be the staff's ace by now.
5. Wimmers would have had about 12-15 starts in 2012 and be a solid rotation guy in 2013.

Injuries have crippled our staff and this string of bad luck coupled by the Blackburn contract has destroyed our rotation. So many argue how Mauer's contract hamstrings this team, but Blackburn's deal had a major cause and effect in the rotation both now and into next year.

twinswon1991
07-23-2012, 12:17 PM
I think A LOT of this can be blamed on something other than the front office. Injuries to our top pitching prospects has crippled this team. Back in 2009, when Gibson was drafted, I am sure the FO thought that he would be the team's #2 or 3 starter right now if not sooner. Fast forward one year and the Twins draft another promising RHP Alex Wimmers that goes Rick Ankiel and is shut down for nearly all of 2011 and then in 2012 is on the verge of Tommy John. Scott Diamond has proven to be a great find as a Rule 5 pickup. But with a healthy Wimmers and Gibson, would the Twins have still made the move?


I would assume that the FO projections for the 2012 and 2013 seasons would have been closer to this following the 2010 draft:

2012 projections

#1 - Francisco Liriano. Liriano was in the midst of a great campaign and looked like the Liriano of old. (Fail - underperformed)
#2 - Scott Baker. Baker's stuff has always been very good. He just can't seem to stay healthy. (Bad Luck)
#3 - Carl Pavano. Pavano was going to be a free agent but had pitched well. He would be brought back on a 2 year deal (OK-1st year, bad luck - 2nd year)
#4 - Nick Blackburn. Blackburn was given a stupid and ridiculous contract so we knew he would be in the conversation. (Epic Fail)
#5 - Kevin Slowey. Slowey was better than Blackburn. Period. NB's contract assured him a rotation spot. Left Slowey out in the cold. Then he pouted. (Fail)
#6 - Kyle Gibson. Gibson was on the fast track to the majors and aside from a hiccup at AAA he had been excellent at every stop. (Bad Luck)
#7 - Glen Perkins. Perkins wasn't exactly in good graces, but he still had potential as a starter. As a reliever he has been very good. (OK)
#8 - Alex Wimmers. The FO probably thought that Wimmers would follow a similar path to the majors as Gibson. (Bad Luck)
#9 - Brian Duensing. FO awarded Duensing a rotation spot after a solid 2010 season, but at this time he was still a reliever. (OK)

2013

Likely gone: Liriano-unrestricted FA, Pavano UFA


Likely in the rotation:

Baker (team option) Slowey, Blackburn, Gibson, Wimmers

The plan wasn't terrible, but it wasn't the reason for total demise of the Twins rotation.
1. Baker cannot stay healthy and at that time (June of 2010) he hadn't been quite as fragile as he has been the last two years.
2. No one forsaw what happened with Slowey way back then either. He appeared to be a very solid #2-3 for years to come.
3. Blackburn sucks and he always has. Who knows what the FO was thinking here.
4. Gibson should have had a year and a half under his belt by now and would arguably be the staff's ace by now.
5. Wimmers would have had about 12-15 starts in 2012 and be a solid rotation guy in 2013.

Injuries have crippled our staff and this string of bad luck coupled by the Blackburn contract has destroyed our rotation. So many argue how Mauer's contract hamstrings this team, but Blackburn's deal had a major cause and effect in the rotation both now and into next year.

Every team suffers injuries and prospects flame out. The. Twins issue is they drafted so poorly for 10 years thst they had no home grown pitching to fill in or to trade for other assets. Spending FA dollars on soft tossers like Blacky, Pavano, Marquis, Ortiz, Ponson and many others was like lighting money on fire. You can never win a playoff series in the AL with soft tossers.

70charger
07-23-2012, 01:26 PM
Every team suffers injuries and prospects flame out. The. Twins issue is they drafted so poorly for 10 years thst they had no home grown pitching to fill in or to trade for other assets. Spending FA dollars on soft tossers like Blacky, Pavano, Marquis, Ortiz, Ponson and many others was like lighting money on fire. You can never win a playoff series in the AL with soft tossers.


Yeah, yeah, yeah. The Twins suck. Why are you here?

Siehbiscuit
07-23-2012, 02:56 PM
Every team suffers injuries and prospects flame out. The. Twins issue is they drafted so poorly for 10 years thst they had no home grown pitching to fill in or to trade for other assets. Spending FA dollars on soft tossers like Blacky, Pavano, Marquis, Ortiz, Ponson and many others was like lighting money on fire. You can never win a playoff series in the AL with soft tossers.

That is a pretty unfair statement. I am not talking about the entire draft. That can be very debatable depending on whomever you talk to. A couple of years ago the Twins had what many considered the best farm system in baseball. Prior to Buxton this year, the Twins have had 13 first round draft picks in the last 10 years (not counting the "sandwich" picks).

2002 - OF Denard Span (20)
2003 - 3B Matt Moses (21)
2004 - SS Trevor Plouffe (20), P Glen Perkins (22), P Kyle Waldrop (25)
2005 - P Matt Garza (25)
2006 - 1B Chris Parmalee (20)
2007 - OF Ben Revere (28)
2008 - OF Aaron Hicks (14), P Carlos Gutierrez (27)
2009 - P - Kyle Gibson (22)
2010 - P - Alex Wimmers (21)
2011 - SS - Levi Michael (30)

On average, the Twins picks are picking around the 23 mark. You are absolutely right that "every team suffers injuries and prospects flame out," but the Twins have drafted relatively well in the higher rounds. Later round picks rarely produce quality major league players. Everyone on this list outside of Matt Moses Prior to 2008 has at least had a cup of coffee in the big leagues. 87.5% success rate is not drafting poorly considering that the Twins were not drafting lower than the 20th pick in any of those years and including Hicks at 14 in 2008 and Buxton in 2012 makes it twice in 11 years that the Twins had picks below the 20th selection.

The FO saw what was coming and grabbed a couple of "soft tossers" (as you like to call them) in back to back years, with the teams low-20's pick. Gibson and Wimmers are and were excellent prospects both now and at the time of their respective drafts. If you look where the Felix Hernandez's and Justin Verlander's and other "flame-throwers" are drafted year in and year out. Its in the top 10.

Picking up the Pavano, Hernandez, Marquis and Ponsons of the world is not the long-term answer, but maybe, just maybe the Twins thought they could catch a little lightning in a bottle and piece together a backend to their rotation. The Twins tried on R.A. Dickey and it bombed. The Mets gace it a go and it has been the best signing ever. Sometimes things come together, sometime you have a string of bad luck. The Twins tried numerous times to get some of these hard throwers. They traded Santana and got Phillip Humber as a part of the deal (top 3 pick) and he completely sucked with the Twins. Ramon Ortiz had a big arm, but couldn't avoid the middle of the plate.

Injuries are the reason the Twins are where they are as well as Blackburn's terrible contract. A healthy rotation of Liriano, Pavano, Baker, Slowey and Gibson would have the Twins very competitive team in the AL Central.

kab21
07-23-2012, 06:50 PM
Injuries aren't the reason the Twins are bad. Injuries took this team from bad to terrible but over ten years in the draft the farm system didn't feed very much talent to the majors. Obviously nobody expects the most recent drafts to have made the majors and there are still some good prospects in the system from these drafts but very little has helped the Twins yet. They got a good starter (Baker), a mediocre starter (Slowey), a pair of lefty relievers, the abomination known as Delmon before getting some help this season (Plouffe, Revere and Diamond (bullock)). Unless you're the Yankees you need to bring up more talent than this to stay competitive.

Blackburn's terrible contract has nothing to do with the Twin's problems. It was a bad decision in hindsight but 5M this year and 5M next are not even remotely close to the reason that the Twins are in the position that they are in.

Shane Wahl
07-27-2012, 12:50 AM
I did a quick scan of top ERA SPs for 2012 and here is a list of those either pre-arbitration or in arbitration:

Pitcher, team, FA year

Chris Sale, CHW 2017
Jarrod Parker, OAK, 2018 (?)
Matt Harrison, TEX, 2015
Tommy Milone, OAK, 2018
Jason Hammel, BAL, 2014
Jeremy Hellickson, TB, 2017

Jordan Zimmermann, WAS, 2016
James McDonald, PIT, 2016
Wade Miley, WAS, 2018
Lance Lynn, STL, 2018
Vance Worley, PHI, 2018
Clayton Richard, SDG, 2015

So really a "no" on all of these guys?