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View Full Version : Why we need to trade Josh Willingham this offseason.



Forever34
08-15-2012, 02:34 PM
To the casual fan this probably seems crazy. But since there are clearly no casuals here my point should be understood. This is my first post so for all I know this conversation has already been had.

1. He's having a career year at the age of 33. It's unlikely that he can repeat or better the numbers he's putting up next year or in the future. Yes, you could have said the exact same thing when we signed him but in this case it is better for Terry Ryan to cash in his chips while he is ahead.

2. While this might technically be an extension of #1, his trade value has never and will never be higher. If we want to get something of good to great value (like a top of the rotation starter or competent middle infielder) in return now is our chance. We clearly have holes and he is one of our best pieces available to fill them.

3. Our minor league system is overflowing with OF talent. Half of our top 20 prospects at the beginning of this season where OF, then we went and drafted Buxton and traded for that Pinero guy. On top of that some of the premeir prospects are finally producing at a rate that warrants the hype (I'm looking at you Aaron Hicks). While the guys in Rochester aren't the most exciting group overall every level below looks like an All-Star team of OF talent. We have three good guys manning the big open space at Target Field now and I've liked what I've seen from Mastroianni in limited duty. Not only do we have the talent to potentially replace him, the longer we have no OF spots available in the big leagues the longer all those guys will have to wait to get a well deserved promotion.

4. He is a bit of a liability on defense. It's no secret that our starting rotation sucks. All the promising pieces we have and those in the minors that have a realistic chance of helping in 2013 are not strikeout pitchers. Therefore if we want to keep runs off the board we can't have holes in the field. 2 of the 3 current pieces can cover a ton of ground and most of the prospects seem to have that ability as well. Plus if we can move Revere to LF his weak arm won't be such an issue.

5. HRs and RBIs are great and all but he strikes out way too often. So far he's done a good job of protecting Mauer, but if he can't consistently get hits and walks how much protection will he be in the future? Say there are two outs and Revere gets a hit then steals 2nd. What's to keep teams from walking Joe just to get to Willingham? Keep in mind how unlikely it is for him to maintain his current HR, RBI, and OPS in the future.

6. We wouldn't have to listen to "Your Love" by The Outfield 2-3 times a game anymore. There have been three season at Target Field. In the first we ran away with the Central. In the second Danny Valencia chose that song for his walk-up music and we lost 99 games. This season Willingham rotates that with "Sweet Home Alabama" and we are potentially a 90 loss last place team again. I'm not saying it's the songs fault. Okay yes I am.

Riverbrian
08-15-2012, 02:42 PM
To the casual fan this probably seems crazy. But since there are clearly no casuals here my point should be understood. This is my first post so for all I know this conversation has already been had.

1. He's having a career year at the age of 33. It's unlikely that he can repeat or better the numbers he's putting up next year or in the future. Yes, you could have said the exact same thing when we signed him but in this case it is better for Terry Ryan to cash in his chips while he is ahead.

2. While this might technically be an extension of #1, his trade value has never and will never be higher. If we want to get something of good to great value (like a top of the rotation starter or competent middle infielder) in return now is our chance. We clearly have holes and he is one of our best pieces available to fill them.

3. Our minor league system is overflowing with OF talent. Half of our top 20 prospects at the beginning of this season where OF, then we went and drafted Buxton and traded for that Pinero guy. On top of that some of the premeir prospects are finally producing at a rate that warrants the hype (I'm looking at you Aaron Hicks). While the guys in Rochester aren't the most exciting group overall every level below looks like an All-Star team of OF talent. We have three good guys manning the big open space at Target Field now and I've liked what I've seen from Mastroianni in limited duty. Not only do we have the talent to potentially replace him, the longer we have no OF spots available in the big leagues the longer all those guys will have to wait to get a well deserved promotion.

4. He is a bit of a liability on defense. It's no secret that our starting rotation sucks. All the promising pieces we have and those in the minors that have a realistic chance of helping in 2013 are not strikeout pitchers. Therefore if we want to keep runs off the board we can't have holes in the field. 2 of the 3 current pieces can cover a ton of ground and most of the prospects seem to have that ability as well. Plus if we can move Revere to LF his weak arm won't be such an issue.

5. HRs and RBIs are great and all but he strikes out way too often. So far he's done a good job of protecting Mauer, but if he can't consistently get hits and walks how much protection will he be in the future? Say there are two outs and Revere gets a hit then steals 2nd. What's to keep teams from walking Joe just to get to Willingham? Keep in mind how unlikely it is for him to maintain his current HR, RBI, and OPS in the future.

6. We wouldn't have to listen to "Your Love" by The Outfield 2-3 times a game anymore. There have been three season at Target Field. In the first we ran away with the Central. In the second Danny Valencia chose that song for his walk-up music and we lost 99 games. This season Willingham rotates that with "Sweet Home Alabama" and we are potentially a 90 loss last place team again. I'm not saying it's the songs fault. Okay yes I am.

Nice Post... I agree with you... If Willingham would fetch a top line pitcher. By All Means.

Seriously Did Valencia use Your Love as a walk up song. Another example of his cluelessness. Your Love is by a Group called "The Outfield" and Danny Valencia played a substandard Third Base.

70charger
08-15-2012, 02:45 PM
Reason #6 is the best one.

Actually, since everything is a gamble anyway, I'd prefer to gamble on Willingham for at least one more season. Saying that his value will never be higher discounts the idea that he may stay healthy next year too. In 2011, he hit a career-high 29 home runs; in 2012 so far, he's at 30. Clearly, Target Field agrees with him. So not only would trading him now deprive us of his pop next year, it might also mean that we sold before the peak. Hell, trade deadline 2014 might be the best, who knows?

I understand not wanting to ride the Willingham rollercoaster back down to the bottom, but there's no guarantee he's going to get hurt or underperform next year. And if he does, I can at least look back on the decision to keep him and feel okay with it being the best choice at the time.

nokomismod
08-15-2012, 02:50 PM
I agree too. Try to trade Span and Willingham or go the other route and add 2 good free agent pitchers.

Yes, his two walkup songs are truly awful. I like Doumit's shout out to the devil with his choice of Danzig. Capp's the Final Countdown was truly awesome also.

gunnarthor
08-15-2012, 02:50 PM
We do have some solid OF prospects but none are really set to replace his power RH bat. I think the Twins would trade Willingham but only if they are over whelmed - ML ready starter and top prospects kind of deal. Otherwise, go into 2013 and you can trade him at the deadline. Even if he isn't putting up the same numbers next year, he's salary would keep him appealing to most teams.

I still think Ryan will move Span this offseason and try to cobble together some starters and keep the middle of this lineup intact.

YourHouseIsMyHouse
08-15-2012, 03:02 PM
To the casual fan this probably seems crazy. But since there are clearly no casuals here my point should be understood. This is my first post so for all I know this conversation has already been had.

1. He's having a career year at the age of 33. It's unlikely that he can repeat or better the numbers he's putting up next year or in the future. Yes, you could have said the exact same thing when we signed him but in this case it is better for Terry Ryan to cash in his chips while he is ahead.

2. While this might technically be an extension of #1, his trade value has never and will never be higher. If we want to get something of good to great value (like a top of the rotation starter or competent middle infielder) in return now is our chance. We clearly have holes and he is one of our best pieces available to fill them.

3. Our minor league system is overflowing with OF talent. Half of our top 20 prospects at the beginning of this season where OF, then we went and drafted Buxton and traded for that Pinero guy. On top of that some of the premeir prospects are finally producing at a rate that warrants the hype (I'm looking at you Aaron Hicks). While the guys in Rochester aren't the most exciting group overall every level below looks like an All-Star team of OF talent. We have three good guys manning the big open space at Target Field now and I've liked what I've seen from Mastroianni in limited duty. Not only do we have the talent to potentially replace him, the longer we have no OF spots available in the big leagues the longer all those guys will have to wait to get a well deserved promotion.

4. He is a bit of a liability on defense. It's no secret that our starting rotation sucks. All the promising pieces we have and those in the minors that have a realistic chance of helping in 2013 are not strikeout pitchers. Therefore if we want to keep runs off the board we can't have holes in the field. 2 of the 3 current pieces can cover a ton of ground and most of the prospects seem to have that ability as well. Plus if we can move Revere to LF his weak arm won't be such an issue.

5. HRs and RBIs are great and all but he strikes out way too often. So far he's done a good job of protecting Mauer, but if he can't consistently get hits and walks how much protection will he be in the future? Say there are two outs and Revere gets a hit then steals 2nd. What's to keep teams from walking Joe just to get to Willingham? Keep in mind how unlikely it is for him to maintain his current HR, RBI, and OPS in the future.

6. We wouldn't have to listen to "Your Love" by The Outfield 2-3 times a game anymore. There have been three season at Target Field. In the first we ran away with the Central. In the second Danny Valencia chose that song for his walk-up music and we lost 99 games. This season Willingham rotates that with "Sweet Home Alabama" and we are potentially a 90 loss last place team again. I'm not saying it's the songs fault. Okay yes I am.

While I wouldn't gripe about Willingham being traded, I wouldn't like it at the moment. I'll try to go short and sweet and play DA.

1/2. It's not like he's going to jump off a cliff. I think other teams take into consideration more than one year of play. He's been a good player for a while now and trading him next deadline might be better if the Twins don't view themselves as contenders.

3. None of the Outfield prospects are ready yet and won't be at the start of next season. It would be too risky to play them now and count them (namely Hicks and Arcia) to be reliable. They are both age 22 and under. Willingham is on a 3 year contract. What's the rush?

4. This is a given, but he has the best arm in the Outfield right now. It certainly would be better if he played RF. As a RF this wouldn't be much of an issue.

5. Willingham has averaged 23HRs a season since 2006. Sure he might not get 30+, but it's crazy to think that he would stop hitting them altogether, or at least enough so to ruin his value. I think this point works in the Twins favor to keep him because not many other players hit for power. None of Twins have eclipsed 20 besides Willingham. Strikeouts come with big swings. The benefit greatly outweighs the negative.

6. ....Really? I reluctantly do agree though.

One last thought. Why should Twins fans go to games when they trade away their best player? To the more casual fan, unlike the forum members here, that could affect revenue. People want to see good players.

Paul
08-15-2012, 03:03 PM
I like the idea of selling high on Willy for all the reasons you gave. But, I think it's reasonable to expect that flipping him before the first year of his 3 year contract is even done will cost the team $ on future FA negotiations. With the greater revenue stream from the new stadium it seems likely that the team will be more active in FA pursuit, so that factor should be weighed carfully.

TheLeviathan
08-15-2012, 03:10 PM
I'm quite convinced about this time next year we're going to be seriously regretting that we didn't deal him at his peak value. His track record and age just scream it.

Danchat
08-15-2012, 03:17 PM
Capp's the Final Countdown was truly awesome also.

Maybe the Twins thought Capps was good only because that song was playing, so then they traded for him.


I'm quite convinced about this time next year we're going to be seriously regretting that we didn't deal him at his peak value. His track record and age just scream it.

I'm sure the Twins will find a way to screw this situation up. At least we're getting one heck of a good year out of him.

mnfireman
08-15-2012, 03:31 PM
RK
TEAM
GP (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/al/sort/gamesPlayed/order/true)
AB (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/al/sort/atBats/order/true)
R (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/al/order/false)
H (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/al/sort/hits/order/true)
2B (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/al/sort/doubles/order/true)
3B (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/al/sort/triples/order/true)
HR (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/al/sort/homeRuns/order/true)
TB (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/al/sort/totalBases/order/true)
RBI (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/al/sort/RBIs/order/true)
AVG (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/al/sort/avg/order/true)
OBP (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/al/sort/onBasePct/order/true)
SLG (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/al/sort/slugAvg/order/true)
OPS (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/al/sort/OPS/order/true)


1
Minnesota (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/min/minnesota-twins)
116
435
74
121
29
1
30
242
87
.278
.369
.556
.925


2
LA Angels (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/laa/los-angeles-angels)
117
461
73
120
23
2
29
234
77
.260
.313
.508
.820


3
Boston (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/bos/boston-red-sox)
117
432
72
116
33
2
12
189
61
.269
.346
.438
.783


4
Tampa Bay (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/tb/tampa-bay-rays)
116
443
71
108
17
3
17
182
54
.244
.320
.411
.731


5
Kansas City (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/kc/kansas-city-royals)
115
469
69
138
39
3
9
210
46
.294
.373
.448
.821


6
Oakland (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/oak/oakland-athletics)
115
426
67
124
20
3
20
210
64
.291
.374
.493
.867


7
Texas (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/tex/texas-rangers)
115
419
66
127
24
0
25
226
85
.303
.380
.539
.919


8
Detroit (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/det/detroit-tigers)
117
463
58
129
25
2
10
188
51
.279
.331
.406
.737


9
Seattle (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/sea/seattle-mariners)
118
433
54
86
17
3
16
157
53
.199
.269
.363
.632


10
Chicago Sox (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/chw/chicago-white-sox)
115
425
53
108
13
1
20
183
63
.254
.303
.431
.733


11
NY Yankees (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/nyy/new-york-yankees)
116
406
53
95
21
2
18
174
53
.234
.304
.429
.732


12
Baltimore (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/bal/baltimore-orioles)
116
438
52
97
24
1
13
162
39
.221
.279
.370
.649


13
Toronto (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/tor/toronto-blue-jays)
116
425
52
110
27
3
8
167
45
.259
.307
.393
.700


14
Cleveland (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/cle/cleveland-indians)
117
423
47
93
13
4
10
144
44
.220
.289
.340
.629

mnfireman
08-15-2012, 03:32 PM
RK
TEAM
GP (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/nl/sort/gamesPlayed/order/true)
AB (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/nl/sort/atBats/order/true)
R (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/nl/order/false)
H (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/nl/sort/hits/order/true)
2B (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/nl/sort/doubles/order/true)
3B (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/nl/sort/triples/order/true)
HR (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/nl/sort/homeRuns/order/true)
TB (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/nl/sort/totalBases/order/true)
RBI (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/nl/sort/RBIs/order/true)
AVG (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/nl/sort/avg/order/true)
OBP (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/nl/sort/onBasePct/order/true)
SLG (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/nl/sort/slugAvg/order/true)
OPS (http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/team/_/stat/batting/split/83/league/nl/sort/OPS/order/true)


1
San Francisco (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/sf/san-francisco-giants)
117
481
85
158
26
9
10
232
60
.328
.375
.482
.858


2
Milwaukee (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/mil/milwaukee-brewers)
115
452
81
135
22
2
29
248
77
.299
.379
.549
.927


3
St. Louis (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/stl/st-louis-cardinals)
116
462
78
144
26
1
25
247
83
.312
.389
.535
.924


4
Colorado (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/col/colorado-rockies)
114
459
77
144
27
5
22
247
84
.314
.378
.538
.916


5
Arizona (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/ari/arizona-diamondbacks)
116
440
66
116
25
3
26
225
80
.264
.340
.511
.851


6
Atlanta (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/atl/atlanta-braves)
116
457
62
136
33
4
8
201
57
.298
.358
.440
.798


7
Philadelphia (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/phi/philadelphia-phillies)
116
460
59
129
19
5
8
182
49
.280
.326
.396
.722


8
NY Mets (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/nym/new-york-mets)
116
441
58
101
21
3
16
176
57
.229
.285
.399
.685


9
LA Dodgers (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/lad/los-angeles-dodgers)
117
458
54
118
24
2
5
161
42
.258
.325
.352
.677


10
San Diego (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/sd/san-diego-padres)
118
443
53
114
29
1
15
190
56
.257
.337
.429
.766


11
Pittsburgh (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/pit/pittsburgh-pirates)
116
481
51
100
19
7
11
166
35
.208
.251
.345
.597


12
Cincinnati (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/cin/cincinnati-reds)
116
443
49
120
29
5
21
222
72
.271
.331
.501
.832


13
Washington (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/wsh/washington-nationals)
117
458
49
108
20
0
13
167
49
.236
.293
.365
.658


14
Chicago Cubs (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/chc/chicago-cubs)
115
440
47
110
26
2
18
194
67
.250
.307
.441
.748


15
Houston (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/hou/houston-astros)
118
452
42
102
15
2
14
163
66
.226
.299
.361
.659


16
Miami (http://espn.go.com/mlb/team/_/name/mia/miami-marlins)
117
439
40
106
20
2
9
157
51
.241
.304
.358
.662

mnfireman
08-15-2012, 03:33 PM
The 2 previous posts show the LF production for every MLB team - why do the Twins trade Willingham and to who?

diehardtwinsfan
08-15-2012, 03:43 PM
yeah, I think willingham is more likely to be traded next year or the year after depending on how Arcia/Hicks/Benson are doing.

cr9617
08-15-2012, 03:50 PM
The 2 previous posts show the LF production for every MLB team - why do the Twins trade Willingham and to who?

They trade him because they can lose 90-95 with or without him in the lineup. And, as has already been pointed out, his value will most likely never be higher. To whom? I'm not sure...

Siehbiscuit
08-15-2012, 04:43 PM
Trade him to Baltimore for Dylan Bundy!

fatbeer
08-15-2012, 04:51 PM
You could trade him next year at the deadline, but I don't know what an over the hill guy hitting .252 with 13 HR's at the deadline gets you, and it isn't really safe to expect anything more from him. All we need is one team to think he can repeat this year that isn't the Twins and we should get an offer worth taking.

fatbeer
08-15-2012, 04:55 PM
I like the idea of selling high on Willy for all the reasons you gave. But, I think it's reasonable to expect that flipping him before the first year of his 3 year contract is even done will cost the team $ on future FA negotiations. With the greater revenue stream from the new stadium it seems likely that the team will be more active in FA pursuit, so that factor should be weighed carfully.

I might not trade him to the Cubs because of that reason, but I would trade him to the Cardinals Yankees or Dodgers among others without worrying about that. The key is making the trade during the offseason when it really doesn't inconvenience him or his family. By the way are there any examples of teams that have traded a guy like this at the deadline in his first season of a contract?

Obie
08-15-2012, 05:13 PM
If we trade him in the offseason, the buyer gets two years of his service at a reasonable cost. If we wait till trade deadline next summer, buyer only gets one and a half years. His value is higher now even if he produces at the same rate next year, which is questionable.

one_eyed_jack
08-15-2012, 05:18 PM
I see the argument for trading Wiliingham, and I could be on board with it. It depends a lot on what happens with Morneau.

I'd be hesitant to trade both, because we'd be castrating the lineup. Those two have hit 46 of the Twins 105 home runs this year.

I'm probably in the minority here, but given the choice, I'd lean towards dealing Willingham. The Twins have gotten a lot of flack the last couple of years for selling low. So let's sell high for once. I know a lot of people would rather get Morneau's salary off the books and keep the cheaper Willingham. But for the same reason, Willingham is a more attractive trade target to a lot of teams.

scottz
08-15-2012, 05:23 PM
If they choose to deal him in the offseason because it is a significantly better return than for other possible trades (i.e., Span), then I'm OK with that. But I don't think it is a foregone conclusion that he will drop off the table in terms of production. He clearly is having a career year from a .SLG angle, but his .BA and .OBP are not outliers.

He might drop off from this year, but given that Target Field seems to play to right-handed pull hitters (subjective - I have no stats offhand to back me up), then I have zero problem with them hanging onto him and see where we are at next year's trade deadline. There would certainly be a market for a guy who was "only" hitting .252 (he's only hit for this low of an average once in his career - 2011 in OAK) and 13 HR after 100 games (on pace for 21 over 162 - a career low for non-injured seasons).

Also, I loves me The Outfield...so shaddup.

minn55441
08-15-2012, 05:32 PM
I like the idea, but it all depends on what we get back. there have to be two sides to any trade. If we don't get a couple of good starting prospects, I hold on to Josh. I have a feeling that TR is holding out for such a deal and at this point, no one has come forward with enough in return.

Brock Beauchamp
08-15-2012, 06:04 PM
6. We wouldn't have to listen to "Your Love" by The Outfield 2-3 times a game anymore. There have been three season at Target Field. In the first we ran away with the Central. In the second Danny Valencia chose that song for his walk-up music and we lost 99 games. This season Willingham rotates that with "Sweet Home Alabama" and we are potentially a 90 loss last place team again. I'm not saying it's the songs fault. Okay yes I am.

Great first post and welcome to the site.

As for #6, I'm going to drink until I convince myself that this is the reason for the Twins' season. Thank you for contributing to my alcoholism.

beckmt
08-15-2012, 06:14 PM
I am more in favor of trading Span unless TR gets an offer he cannot refuse(a 2 pitcher major league ready and maybe other parts). Willingham is why the players around him are having better years, a big right handed bat between the two lefties. Hicks being a switch hitter, better right handed may help in the long run, but short term no.

Mave
08-15-2012, 07:01 PM
I see the logic, but I have one problem with trading Willingham one year after signing him to a three-year deal....

What does that say to future free agents that the Twins are trying to sign?

I realize that this is a business, and capitalizing on Hammer's value after a career year isn't completely illogical. However, these still are people we are dealing with, and people like stability. To state the obvious again-- the Twin's are in need of a clear-cut ace at the top of the rotation. It would be cool to see the Twins land a prospective ace in exchange for Willingham, but in reality I believe it is far more likely they will land this potential ace through the FA market... or sign Ramon Ortiz... but I digress....

Again, how would a cut-throat business move like this be seen in eyes of prized free agents, typically young(er) men who likely have young families and really wouldn't like to be unloaded after they do what they were signed to do?

Mave
08-15-2012, 07:05 PM
Wow... Sorry Paul, I just saw that you already wrote exactly what I was trying to say.... My bad, team.

twinsnorth49
08-15-2012, 07:20 PM
I am more in favor of trading Span unless TR gets an offer he cannot refuse(a 2 pitcher major league ready and maybe other parts). Willingham is why the players around him are having better years, a big right handed bat between the two lefties. Hicks being a switch hitter, better right handed may help in the long run, but short term no.

How so?


Trade them both if you can get a couple of major league ready starters and a bunch of young parts, the more the better. The power is still there with Doumit, Plouffe and either Morneau or Parms next year. Willingham isn't going to hit 30 again next year and Span seems like he's a fatality waiting to happen.

TheLeviathan
08-15-2012, 07:26 PM
Again, how would a cut-throat business move like this be seen in eyes of prized free agents, typically young(er) men who likely have young families and really wouldn't like to be unloaded after they do what they were signed to do?

If you can deal Willingham for significant help for the future - you worry about questions like this later.

twinsnorth49
08-15-2012, 07:38 PM
Again, how would a cut-throat business move like this be seen in eyes of prized free agents, typically young(er) men who likely have young families and really wouldn't like to be unloaded after they do what they were signed to do?

If you can deal Willingham for significant help for the future - you worry about questions like this later.

Not a concern, unless you were targeting another 33 year old free agent. If you signed a younger free agent and he did what he was signed to do, why would you move him? Much of the thought on this has to do with a 33 year old having a career year, you don't get the opportunity to cash in on that very often

kab21
08-15-2012, 09:53 PM
I don't think there will be a lot of interest in Willingham in the offseason. Teams have other options to pursue as well hoping that their Chris Heisey's and Ryan Ludwick's will fill a position. Hopefully he doesn't get injured before the trade deadline.

I also completely disagree with how it would look to potential FA's. Most players take the most money and if a player turned the Twins down it would probably have more to do with them having back to back 90 loss seasons and they want to go to a playoff contender.

gil4
08-15-2012, 11:05 PM
Trade him to Baltimore for Dylan Bundy!

I'm pretty sure the O's know that Willingham is 33 and has a history of injuries. I think we have a better chance of building a time machine, traveling to the future to find out who will be good, then coming back and trading for them. Bundy is as not available as they come.

If you can make a working flux capacitor, I'll buy the DeLorean.

gil4
08-15-2012, 11:18 PM
Much of the thought on this has to do with a 33 year old having a career year, you don't get the opportunity to cash in on that very often

The problem is the teams know that he is a 33 year old coming off a career year and they factor that into how they value him. Jim Bowden, Omar Minaya, and Bill Smith aren't GMs anymore - the league has gotten smarter.

Shane Wahl
08-15-2012, 11:56 PM
No, no, and no. The guy is going to hit 40 homers this season. You don't just trade that away if you are this organization. Willingham and Plouffe provide big-time RH power, just the very thing this team has traditionally lacked. There are plenty of cases of mid-30s players hitting 30+ homers or 25+ homers, and Willingham is now on the incline, NOT the decline in terms of power and everything else. It's just DUMB to trade him. The Twins have him for 2 more years at 14 million bucks. Morneau will make 14 million bucks in one year. HE is the guy that you trade for a SP. Not a prospect, but an actual legitimate MLB SP. That's the trade to be made. Add a FA signing and the Twins have a whole different outlook next year.

Again: trading Willingham is stupid.

Highabove
08-16-2012, 01:58 AM
No, no, and no. The guy is going to hit 40 homers this season. You don't just trade that away if you are this organization. Willingham and Plouffe provide big-time RH power, just the very thing this team has traditionally lacked. There are plenty of cases of mid-30s players hitting 30+ homers or 25+ homers, and Willingham is now on the incline, NOT the decline in terms of power and everything else. It's just DUMB to trade him. The Twins have him for 2 more years at 14 million bucks. Morneau will make 14 million bucks in one year. HE is the guy that you trade for a SP. Not a prospect, but an actual legitimate MLB SP. That's the trade to be made. Add a FA signing and the Twins have a whole different outlook next year.

Again: trading Willingham is stupid.

A lot of Power Hitters remain productive, well into their 30's.

Harmon Killebrew hit 118 Homeruns from the time he was 33-35 years old.

Players did not work out as much in those days.

Jim Thome hit 111 Home runs between the ages of 35-37

Gary Gaetti hit a career high 35 Home runs at age 36.

twinstalker
08-16-2012, 02:22 AM
Trade him to Baltimore for Dylan Bundy!

Maybe they'll throw in Machado, too. In fact, maybe they'll just close the doors to the franchise after next year.

twinstalker
08-16-2012, 03:09 AM
While I agree with dealing Willingham, there are a few points to consider as an argument.

First is that the time has passed. The Twins are the kings are missing opportunities, and they may have done so already. Teams will be "fixing" their problems in the offseason without giving up young talent.

Second, perhaps Willingham is not worth all that much to teams in the hunt. I don't doubt that Terry Ryan might fail to recognize a good offer, but I also can see where the best he was offered was someone like Tony Cingrani, who, while a nice prospect, really isn't as sure a thing as they'd need to make sense. Two Tony Cingranis (say, Cingrani and Corcino) probably would ultimately provide a good pitcher, but from Cincy's viewpoint, that may have been far too much. Certainly it would be in the offseason. You're not going to get a Bundy or Machado or similar for Willingham, so you might be hoping for a team with excess MLB pitching that needs a hitter, and there just doesn't seem to be teams out there with excess anything (except Arizona with a lot of close pitcher but no need for an outfielder, much less a bad-fielding one).

Third, without Willingham the Twins have gaping holes in two areas: power and right-handed sticks. That makes JW even more valuable to the Twins. Only Plouffe sort of fills both, not that one other player is enough, and he's no sure thing to continue to do so. The rest of the lineup, from Doumit to Mauer to Morneau to Parmelee to Arcia is decidedly left-handed (Doumit is pretty meh against lhp). They will have to go outside the organization to replace JW, which is going to cost one way or another.

I agree that trading JW is preferable, but the Twins really needed to do it before the deadline. At this point they are much better served to wait until next year's deadline, but the Minnesota jinx almost guarantees he'll be hurt then or unproductive before then. In either case (hurt/unproductive) it behooves Minnesota to then hold onto him.

Ryan blew it by not shopping this guy and taking advantage of his best year (at age 33!). It's this type of GMing that plagues the franchise. He's given a gift in the middle of a mess, and he just lets the mess swallow it up. Fans will come to see a winner, not names, and especially not names most hadn't heard of until months ago. Whether it's failing to seek a Willingham trade or allowing Liriano to pitch after his 15 strikeout game, it's clear Ryan doesn't have a grasp for taking advantage of situations or more generally how to build a winner. Maybe he can stumble into another team that has four of the best thirty players in baseball and bumble crap around them to compete for the Central division title annually, but I think that's unlikely and really shouldn't be the goal.

Cap'n Piranha
08-16-2012, 07:56 AM
While I agree with dealing Willingham, there are a few points to consider as an argument.

First is that the time has passed. The Twins are the kings are missing opportunities, and they may have done so already. Teams will be "fixing" their problems in the offseason without giving up young talent.

Second, perhaps Willingham is not worth all that much to teams in the hunt. I don't doubt that Terry Ryan might fail to recognize a good offer, but I also can see where the best he was offered was someone like Tony Cingrani, who, while a nice prospect, really isn't as sure a thing as they'd need to make sense. Two Tony Cingranis (say, Cingrani and Corcino) probably would ultimately provide a good pitcher, but from Cincy's viewpoint, that may have been far too much. Certainly it would be in the offseason. You're not going to get a Bundy or Machado or similar for Willingham, so you might be hoping for a team with excess MLB pitching that needs a hitter, and there just doesn't seem to be teams out there with excess anything (except Arizona with a lot of close pitcher but no need for an outfielder, much less a bad-fielding one).

Third, without Willingham the Twins have gaping holes in two areas: power and right-handed sticks. That makes JW even more valuable to the Twins. Only Plouffe sort of fills both, not that one other player is enough, and he's no sure thing to continue to do so. The rest of the lineup, from Doumit to Mauer to Morneau to Parmelee to Arcia is decidedly left-handed (Doumit is pretty meh against lhp). They will have to go outside the organization to replace JW, which is going to cost one way or another.

I agree that trading JW is preferable, but the Twins really needed to do it before the deadline. At this point they are much better served to wait until next year's deadline, but the Minnesota jinx almost guarantees he'll be hurt then or unproductive before then. In either case (hurt/unproductive) it behooves Minnesota to then hold onto him.

Ryan blew it by not shopping this guy and taking advantage of his best year (at age 33!). It's this type of GMing that plagues the franchise. He's given a gift in the middle of a mess, and he just lets the mess swallow it up. Fans will come to see a winner, not names, and especially not names most hadn't heard of until months ago. Whether it's failing to seek a Willingham trade or allowing Liriano to pitch after his 15 strikeout game, it's clear Ryan doesn't have a grasp for taking advantage of situations or more generally how to build a winner. Maybe he can stumble into another team that has four of the best thirty players in baseball and bumble crap around them to compete for the Central division title annually, but I think that's unlikely and really shouldn't be the goal.

You kind of contradict yourself here by theorizing that the offer maybe wasn't enough, but then bashing Ryan for not taking it. How do we know what Terry Ryan was offered for The Hammer? What if it was a slightly better package than what we got for Frankie? Would you have supported trading him for a couple of replacement-type players with chances to be starters? Unless someone has hard, indisputable proof that TR passed up quality pitching in July, we all need to stop savaging him. After all, it's not like TR can just choose whoever he wants in a deal, the other team has to say yes too.

I personally think it's absolutely reasonable that Terry Ryan's plan is to sign a couple free agent pitchers, and fill out his rotation with some combo of Diamond, Gibson, Hendriks, Deduno, and others. With even a league-average rotation, a line-up of Span, Revere, Mauer, Willingham, Morneau, Plouffe, Doumit, Dozier/Florimon, Carroll/Casilla is good enough to compete in the Central. If they're not competitive in July next year, you can flip Willingham, Span, and Morneau for quite a bit at the deadline, and start the youth movement.

Cody Christie
08-16-2012, 08:06 AM
If the offer is right, Willingham should be on a new team. It seems like the Twins are a couple of years away from contending again and they will need top level starting pitchers to have any chance of doing this. It has been great to see what Willingham has been able to do this season on the offensive side of the ball and it looks like a great signing by the front office. If the right deal isn't out there, he should stay in Minnesota but there has to be someone that wants him... Right???....

TheLeviathan
08-16-2012, 08:15 AM
The guy is going to hit 40 homers this season.

Right and normally he struggles to get 500 ABs in a season because of injury. We have a glut of young OF that will be up and ready before his contract expires. If he's not part of the long-term plan, you should make his departure part of the long-term plan.

diehardtwinsfan
08-16-2012, 08:45 AM
the question regarding trading the hammer has more to do with what the team's intent is with next year. If they want to be competitive (and plan to add the pitching necessary to do so), then you don't trade Josh... Period. If the plan is to punt on 2013 for 2014, then by all means, they should have traded him at the deadline or this offseason.

My guess is that the team is going to attempt to be competitve (even if it isn't the best idea) and will try to add some parts via free agency and potentially flip one of Span/Revere/Morneau for some pitching help.

Forever34
08-16-2012, 08:51 AM
One last thought. Why should Twins fans go to games when they trade away their best player? To the more casual fan, unlike the forum members here, that could affect revenue. People want to see good players.

That's an excellent point. He has become a fan favorite quickly and to most trading him would seem like the Pohlads being cheap and throwing in the towel for us being any good in the near future (especially if we get prospects in return).

When I remember the all the comments on the Twins home page about how they were idoits for taking Buxton instead of reaching for a starting pitching prospects as if it was realistic for him to help this season I'm reminded that most fans only care about immediate returns.

Forever34
08-16-2012, 08:52 AM
Thank you for contributing to my alcoholism.

You're welcome I guess.

jimbo92107
08-16-2012, 10:45 AM
Of course you trade Willingham. You also trade Morneau and Span.

The Twins are a penny-pinching franchise, with the occasional exception for a Joe Mauer. As such, periodically they must unload their talented veterans and make room for cheap, talented players rising through the minors. Same as the Rays.

Friends, it's time to unload. Willingham knows he's a hired gun. Morneau and Span both are coming back from concussion problems. Meanwhile, you've got Parmelee, Arcia, Hicks and Benson ready to replace the veterans. Will they be as good? Nobody knows, it's the Great Mystery. Are they cheap? That much we know for certain. Yes, they're all major league minimum.

The other thing we know for certain is that this veteran group will not win a World Series. To develop the pitching for a run, the Twins need three years minimum, plus the exact opposite of the bad luck they've had with Gibson and Wimmers. They need some guys to emerge like Hendriks, Bromberg or Vasquez, guys that are good enough to displace marginal starters like Blackburn, De Vries and Duensing.

The Minnesota Twins are not a winning team. That means things have to change. Because they are a cheap franchise, change must come primarily from the minor leagues. Trade your veterans for prospects, cheer the new kids, and don't buy a jersey with a name on it.

Monkeypaws
08-16-2012, 10:45 AM
I think at 7 million per this guy is a steal.

Mid-30's are still good years; the difference for most folks physically 33 to 36 is minimal.

When you start edging near 40 is when the body starts to change, but again, that varies from one person to the next.

To me, the Twins for once got lucky and got a free agent who value exceeds his salary; these are guys you keep.

They need to find the Willingham and Doumit of pitchers next off-season.

kab21
08-16-2012, 10:59 AM
I think at 7 million per this guy is a steal.

Mid-30's are still good years; the difference for most folks physically 33 to 36 is minimal.

When you start edging near 40 is when the body starts to change, but again, that varies from one person to the next.

To me, the Twins for once got lucky and got a free agent who value exceeds his salary; these are guys you keep.

They need to find the Willingham and Doumit of pitchers next off-season.

Actually the difference in baseball between 33 and 36 is usually retirement. Very few players play until 40.

More importantly though is that it's unlikely that the Twins are competitive next year and possibly the year after. Trading him for a some players/prospects that can help for an extended run when the now pretty good farm system starts feeding the Twins makes sense.

THE DFC
08-16-2012, 11:51 AM
Of course you trade Willingham. You also trade Morneau and Span.

The Twins are a penny-pinching franchise, with the occasional exception for a Joe Mauer. As such, periodically they must unload their talented veterans and make room for cheap, talented players rising through the minors. Same as the Rays.

Friends, it's time to unload. Willingham knows he's a hired gun. Morneau and Span both are coming back from concussion problems. Meanwhile, you've got Parmelee, Arcia, Hicks and Benson ready to replace the veterans. Will they be as good? Nobody knows, it's the Great Mystery. Are they cheap? That much we know for certain. Yes, they're all major league minimum.

The other thing we know for certain is that this veteran group will not win a World Series. To develop the pitching for a run, the Twins need three years minimum, plus the exact opposite of the bad luck they've had with Gibson and Wimmers. They need some guys to emerge like Hendriks, Bromberg or Vasquez, guys that are good enough to displace marginal starters like Blackburn, De Vries and Duensing.

The Minnesota Twins are not a winning team. That means things have to change. Because they are a cheap franchise, change must come primarily from the minor leagues. Trade your veterans for prospects, cheer the new kids, and don't buy a jersey with a name on it.

Yep. To build on this, I'm not sure why people are so short-sighted as to say, "he's a steal at his current value, so we should keep him (Willingham)."

Listen, everyone was upset during the years of first-round exits. We all said we want to contend for a title and not settle for above-average. Holding onto guys like Willingham and Span while they're at max value and the Twins have no shot at competing for anything is exactly how you create perennially above-average teams that are pretenders and not contenders.

It's really simple--you're a "buyer" when you've got a chance to contend, have excess wealth and you're willing to mortgage the short-term for the long-term. You're a "seller" when you have no chance to contend but have short-term pieces of value that can be swapped for potentially long-term pieces of value.

Considering where this team is in the standings and how major of an overhaul this rotation needs for us to get into contention (a 2-3 year project, if you live in reality), who do you think we are--buyers or sellers?

In 2015, when the Twins are rolling out, say, Mauer, Plouffe, Michael, Rosario, Parmelee, Revere, Hicks, Arcia, Sano, and we still have Buxton, Kepler, Harrison, Goodrum, Polanco, etc. and the next two years of high draft picks in the system, that's when I want to see us evolve into buyers.

In the meantime, we should move Willingham, Span and anyone other vets that are relatively expensive for rotation prospects that can come up with the wave of young position players listed above.

USAFChief
08-16-2012, 12:05 PM
the question regarding trading the hammer has more to do with what the team's intent is with next year. If they want to be competitive (and plan to add the pitching necessary to do so), then you don't trade Josh... Period. If the plan is to punt on 2013 for 2014, then by all means, they should have traded him at the deadline or this offseason.

My guess is that the team is going to attempt to be competitve (even if it isn't the best idea) and will try to add some parts via free agency and potentially flip one of Span/Revere/Morneau for some pitching help.

Concur.

I would add that going for it in 2013 is risky. But no more so than trading everything of value and aiming for 2015 or 2016. Neither strategy is guaranteed to succeed, and you might end up punting 2013 and 2014 only to be as bad or worse in the following years.

ashburyjohn
08-16-2012, 01:05 PM
Concur.

Make me.

ashburyjohn
08-16-2012, 01:15 PM
Actually the difference in baseball between 33 and 36 is usually retirement. Very few players play until 40.

My snap response is "but, but, but, Thome! Chipper!" However, baseball-reference.com provides the interesting "Similarity Score" feature down near the bottom of Willingham's page, and it's instructive to look over the list of players whose careers Josh's resembles. Not a lot of guys like him play past the age he's already at, actually.

Dilligaf69
08-16-2012, 01:22 PM
The thing is I don't think you can get a frontline starter for Hammer...I think it would take more and most teams just don't give up pitching. So I think you hold onto him unless someone does offer you a potential #1

Dilligaf69
08-16-2012, 01:28 PM
Of course you trade Willingham. You also trade Morneau and Span.

The Twins are a penny-pinching franchise, with the occasional exception for a Joe Mauer. As such, periodically they must unload their talented veterans and make room for cheap, talented players rising through the minors. Same as the Rays.

Friends, it's time to unload. Willingham knows he's a hired gun. Morneau and Span both are coming back from concussion problems. Meanwhile, you've got Parmelee, Arcia, Hicks and Benson ready to replace the veterans. Will they be as good? Nobody knows, it's the Great Mystery. Are they cheap? That much we know for certain. Yes, they're all major league minimum.

The other thing we know for certain is that this veteran group will not win a World Series. To develop the pitching for a run, the Twins need three years minimum, plus the exact opposite of the bad luck they've had with Gibson and Wimmers. They need some guys to emerge like Hendriks, Bromberg or Vasquez, guys that are good enough to displace marginal starters like Blackburn, De Vries and Duensing.

The Minnesota Twins are not a winning team. That means things have to change. Because they are a cheap franchise, change must come primarily from the minor leagues. Trade your veterans for prospects, cheer the new kids, and don't buy a jersey with a name on it.


While I won't doscount your entire post cuz I think therein lies some truth but to call the Twins "penny pinching and cheap" is false. How many "cheap" teams have payrolls near or over $100 mil??? the answer is NONE! Just because they don't go out and spend $120 mil on slightly above avg starters like Hamels or there payroll isn't on par with Boston or NY doesn't mean they are cheap. Now you can argue all day that they spend their money in the wrong places or on the wrong players but please don't label them as cheap..it's simply not true!

Dilligaf69
08-16-2012, 01:30 PM
the question regarding trading the hammer has more to do with what the team's intent is with next year. If they want to be competitive (and plan to add the pitching necessary to do so), then you don't trade Josh... Period. If the plan is to punt on 2013 for 2014, then by all means, they should have traded him at the deadline or this offseason.

My guess is that the team is going to attempt to be competitve (even if it isn't the best idea) and will try to add some parts via free agency and potentially flip one of Span/Revere/Morneau for some pitching help.

Concur.

I would add that going for it in 2013 is risky. But no more so than trading everything of value and aiming for 2015 or 2016. Neither strategy is guaranteed to succeed, and you might end up punting 2013 and 2014 only to be as bad or worse in the following years.


You may become the Royals or Pirates(2012 notwithstanding)...anyone want that??

birdwatcher
08-16-2012, 01:38 PM
The consensus is trade him, but for the right return. But what is the right return? Let's assume Ryan insists on trying to put a "competitive" team on the field in 2012. Let's also assume he wrongly believes he's got a competitive outfield sans Willingham. Assume further he's fishing for either a starting pitcher or a SS of higher quality than what he has in Dozier, Casilla, Carroll, Escobar, Florimon and Nishioka (sorry, I just puked). Give me a name to use as a comp, at both positions for Willingham, Morneau, and Span.

Example: Morneau gets you Cliff Lee or Dustin Pedroia (kidding here)

TheLeviathan
08-16-2012, 02:06 PM
To me they should have been shopping him to San Francisco for something like Panik and Chase Blackburn. Or Baltimore for Bridwell, Tillman, and something else. Or maybe a package starting with Eovaldi from Los Angeles.

The reality is, Willingham is occupying a spot that one of the OFs in our farm is not far from taking. (Particularly because a couple of our AA guys are showing more readiness than expected) He's also 33 and highly unlikely to repeat his season. Relying on one month's bounceback from Morneau or Span's friendly contract to be our main trade chips screams disappointing result. We may have already lost out on our best value for Willy, but the longer we wait the worse it will get.

twinsnorth49
08-16-2012, 02:43 PM
To me they should have been shopping him to San Francisco for something like Panik and Chase Blackburn. Or Baltimore for Bridwell, Tillman, and something else. Or maybe a package starting with Eovaldi from Los Angeles.

The reality is, Willingham is occupying a spot that one of the OFs in our farm is not far from taking. (Particularly because a couple of our AA guys are showing more readiness than expected) He's also 33 and highly unlikely to repeat his season. Relying on one month's bounceback from Morneau or Span's friendly contract to be our main trade chips screams disappointing result. We may have already lost out on our best value for Willy, but the longer we wait the worse it will get.

100% agree, people can argue whether it makes sense to trade Hammer from a competitive standpoint in 2013, you cannot however argue the above is not true.
h
The big question seems to be if, if , if, the Twins magically acquire some front line pitching this winter, trading Hammer will sacrifice the benefits of that and make us less competitive at the plate. What people seem to be missing is that he is, at this stage, likely our best opportunity to acquire that much needed pitching but we need to act from a position of strength and before the window closes.

Coach J
08-16-2012, 03:21 PM
We live in a different era of baseball now. Teams will not give up quality pitching for a aging outfielder who is a defensive liability. Teams value pitching and defense much more than they did 10 years ago. I think the Twins are caught in a position where they don't know when they can compete. They don't want to commit to rebuilding for 2014-2015. They seem like they want to try to add a few pieces here and there and try to compete in the next year. But when their record is 10-12 games below 500 in the first few months, they are finding that teams will not mortage their future for some rental players even if they are competing that year. It just appears that the Twins are 1 or 2 steps behind in every movie they make.

kab21
08-16-2012, 09:48 PM
You may become the Royals or Pirates(2012 notwithstanding)...anyone want that??

This is a untrue criticism to rebuilding. The Pirates and Royals sucked for years due to absolutely awful decisions in the draft and at pretty much every level of baseball. these two teams finally got it in the last 3-4 years when they spent megabucks in the draft and internationally. Now they both have great farm systems but that wasn't the case for the decades that they sucked. if you want a better comparison to the Twins then it would be the Cubs or the Mets. Expensive losers but luckily the Twins aren't saddled with any long term awful contracts. If you pay attention to baseball you'll notice that both of these clubs are slashing payroll and rebuilding their farm systems.

Imo the do anything to get to 80 wins plan could set this franchise back years in the rebuilding process.

Ultima Ratio
08-16-2012, 10:06 PM
Kab, the pirates were a farm team for the past 10-15 years. Every good and decent player was traded for prospects whom were traded if they too became good/decent and in the final years of arbitration. Just to name a few. Freddy Garcia, Niger Morgan, Jason Bay, Aramis Ramirez, Brian Giles, Jason Kendell (in his prime) and many more. The reason is because the GM in those years -- and still now -- was told to dramatically lower payroll. Low payroll makes it hard to keep good players and so goes the tale of a crappy baseball team for the past 20 years. GO BUCS!

kab21
08-16-2012, 11:24 PM
Kab, the pirates were a farm team for the past 10-15 years. Every good and decent player was traded for prospects whom were traded if they too became good/decent and in the final years of arbitration. Just to name a few. Freddy Garcia, Niger Morgan, Jason Bay, Aramis Ramirez, Brian Giles, Jason Kendell (in his prime) and many more. The reason is because the GM in those years -- and still now -- was told to dramatically lower payroll. Low payroll makes it hard to keep good players and so goes the tale of a crappy baseball team for the past 20 years. GO BUCS!

You don't really understand why the Pirates were awful for so long. They had one of the lowest MLB payrolls and they were also really cheap in the draft bypassing the BPA for signability several times. Combine that with making awful decisions at the MLB level and you are left with an org that eventually has to trade the few good players that they produced. They were simply a complete failure as an organization that never had a rebuilding plan until recently when they started spending megabucks in the draft.

Brock Beauchamp
08-16-2012, 11:44 PM
This is a untrue criticism to rebuilding. The Pirates and Royals sucked for years due to absolutely awful decisions in the draft and at pretty much every level of baseball. these two teams finally got it in the last 3-4 years when they spent megabucks in the draft and internationally. Now they both have great farm systems but that wasn't the case for the decades that they sucked. if you want a better comparison to the Twins then it would be the Cubs or the Mets. Expensive losers but luckily the Twins aren't saddled with any long term awful contracts. If you pay attention to baseball you'll notice that both of these clubs are slashing payroll and rebuilding their farm systems.

Imo the do anything to get to 80 wins plan could set this franchise back years in the rebuilding process.

I understand and mostly agree with your point but the Royals aren't getting any better. At this point, they should be getting better but they aren't. The Pirates have made a bunch of savvy moves on every level in recent years. They haven't been in "dump everything" mode in quite some time and are now seeing dividends. The Royals, on the other hand... Could they be good next season? Sure. Is it likely? No.

It's easy to dump players for prospects. But in the case of a team like the Royals, they need to start acting like a real Major League franchise and they have yet to do it. It's hard to build an entire team on the backs of a bunch of prospects (who fail and/or get injured in the minors) and I don't fault the Twins for not laying down and playing possum. They have a nucleus and they have money. I'm all for dishing off some of that nucleus for MiLB players but let's not ignore this team and its upside. Given this division, there's no reason why they can't compete in 2013 or 2014, looking at their farm and the upside they have in the trade market. The two top teams in the division are on the decline and the two other teams are not showing as much promise as they once hoped.

Nick Nelson
08-17-2012, 01:08 AM
Imo the do anything to get to 80 wins plan could set this franchise back years in the rebuilding process.

First of all, I haven't seen anyone saying the Twins should "do anything" to get back to immediate contention next year. But I'd certainly argue that the team should look for young players that can help right away and put some of their freed up payroll into pitchers that can make an impact. The alternative is to have the Pohlads pocket the $20 million rather than spending it in free agency, and trading away all veteran assets for prospects. Maybe a nice theory until you look at the job this organization has done of evaluating young talent in recent years.

The Twins aren't in a position like the Pirates and Royals because they have no tradable superstars. They have guys like Span, Willingham and Morneau that they can probably move for B-prospects. That's not a great recipe for rebuilding, especially when the kind of lesser prospects you tend to target are almost always some variation of Pedro Hernandez and Eduardo Escobar.

USAFChief
08-17-2012, 05:03 AM
You may become the Royals or Pirates(2012 notwithstanding)...anyone want that??

This is a untrue criticism to rebuilding. The Pirates and Royals sucked for years due to absolutely awful decisions in the draft and at pretty much every level of baseball. these two teams finally got it in the last 3-4 years when they spent megabucks in the draft and internationally. Now they both have great farm systems but that wasn't the case for the decades that they sucked. if you want a better comparison to the Twins then it would be the Cubs or the Mets. Expensive losers but luckily the Twins aren't saddled with any long term awful contracts. If you pay attention to baseball you'll notice that both of these clubs are slashing payroll and rebuilding their farm systems.

Imo the do anything to get to 80 wins plan could set this franchise back years in the rebuilding process.

I think it's more true that the Pirates and Royals sucked for years due to a combination of things, the most important of which is: rebuilding a franchise is hard. Trading away all your major league players to "rebuild" doesn't guarantee you'll be "rebuilt" at some point in the near future. In fact, the most likely outcome is you'll be doing the same thing in a few years...trading away your good major league talent in some new GM's new five year rebuilding plan. Lather, rinse, repeat.

If the rebuilding process came with some guarantee, it's an easy decision to make. It doesn't. Given the Twins current major league roster, the ability to spend $120M next year if they choose, some FA pitching available, and some potential redundancy at 1B/OF that can be dealt for ML pitching, there's an argument to be made for trying to win in 2013 that's at least as strong as the argument for giving up on the next couple years. In fact, I would argue the 2013 team, with the right moves, has a better chance of competing than expecting everything to come up roses in 2015 with the current minor leagues plus whatever prospects you add by dumping everything of value.

diehardtwinsfan
08-17-2012, 07:28 AM
You may become the Royals or Pirates(2012 notwithstanding)...anyone want that??

This is a untrue criticism to rebuilding. The Pirates and Royals sucked for years due to absolutely awful decisions in the draft and at pretty much every level of baseball. these two teams finally got it in the last 3-4 years when they spent megabucks in the draft and internationally. Now they both have great farm systems but that wasn't the case for the decades that they sucked. if you want a better comparison to the Twins then it would be the Cubs or the Mets. Expensive losers but luckily the Twins aren't saddled with any long term awful contracts. If you pay attention to baseball you'll notice that both of these clubs are slashing payroll and rebuilding their farm systems.

Imo the do anything to get to 80 wins plan could set this franchise back years in the rebuilding process.

I think it's more true that the Pirates and Royals sucked for years due to a combination of things, the most important of which is: rebuilding a franchise is hard. Trading away all your major league players to "rebuild" doesn't guarantee you'll be "rebuilt" at some point in the near future. In fact, the most likely outcome is you'll be doing the same thing in a few years...trading away your good major league talent in some new GM's new five year rebuilding plan. Lather, rinse, repeat.

If the rebuilding process came with some guarantee, it's an easy decision to make. It doesn't. Given the Twins current major league roster, the ability to spend $120M next year if they choose, some FA pitching available, and some potential redundancy at 1B/OF that can be dealt for ML pitching, there's an argument to be made for trying to win in 2013 that's at least as strong as the argument for giving up on the next couple years. In fact, I would argue the 2013 team, with the right moves, has a better chance of competing than expecting everything to come up roses in 2015 with the current minor leagues plus whatever prospects you add by dumping everything of value.

Pretty much this.... I'm all for rebuilding if that is what the team thinks should be done, though the new CBA really takes away the Twins ability to improve the odds of a good crop of milb talent come 2015/16 timeframe, as they have limits as to what they can spend. There's a lot of reasons to think they can compete in 2013. The offense is there now, and there's plenty in the pipline, with the only positional weakness being up the middle. Their problem is pitching, pitching, and more pitching. Other than Diamond, not one of the FillerDs should be relied on for the rotation next year, and I really think they should be planning on starting one of Gibson/Hendriks in AAA as well. That means they need to fill 3 spots. Blackburn is a given even though he shouldn't be. I'd argue they need to sign/trade for 2 decent starters and get 1 starter on a prove it contract.

I suspect Ryan might be able to flip Span for something, though it's looking more and more like his best bet is going to be a #3 starter.

TheLeviathan
08-17-2012, 08:14 AM
Trading away all your major league players to "rebuild" doesn't guarantee you'll be "rebuilt" at some point in the near future. In fact, the most likely outcome is you'll be doing the same thing in a few years...trading away your good major league talent in some new GM's new five year rebuilding plan. Lather, rinse, repeat.

If the rebuilding process came with some guarantee, it's an easy decision to make. It doesn't.

You've got a strawman and a ridiculous notion here. Nothing comes with a guarantee and no one is suggesting that. Hell, the Angels are in a dogfight for the playoffs after adding CJ Wilson, Albert Pujols, Zach Grienke, and a wunderkid to their already solid roster. The notion that FA can be any more a silver bullet than rebuilding is just foolish.

No one is guaranteeing rebuilding will work, but there are some valid reasons to defer to that strategy. When you build around young talent you give yourself a longer window of opportunity. The team next year has many, many question marks and is coming off a season in which it was one of the worst in baseball. A couple FA pitchers could help a ton, but they won't fix everything. And to me, it's all about focus. If you focus your FA work towards the future - spend away. Go get someone that will be here and contributing for the next 5-7 years. But if you focus on putting your eggs in the 2013 basket I think you will horribly waste an opportunity down the line.

Think about it this way - the Twins had two waves of good young players that put them in contention. Their hesitation to ever add to that mix hurt the team. But you have to have that intact core before you can go outside the organization and fix all your ills. Putting aside the hypocrisy of "Don't trade Hammer and punt 2013, but trade Span and Morneau" - Span's team friendly deal will simply not be enough to garner a significant piece. (Hell, look how bad Sanchez failed for KC and Span doesn't even have that kind of value) Morneau is making 14M and has had basically one stretch where he looked great again. Trading from this supposed "glut" A) isn't going to fetch much immediate impact and B) puts even more pressure on Hammer and Doumit to defy 6-7 years of career norms for staying healthy and producing.

The Twins potentially have a core they can compete with for a decade coming very soon. That same group could fail miserably, but the group we have right now is not a core to build around or invest assets into - we KNOW that much. Willingham will not be a longterm solution - but Revere, Plouffe, Dozier, Hicks, Parmalee might be. My opinion has always been - build with an eye towards what will be the most sustainable and durable. 2013 offers little of either.

ericchri
08-17-2012, 08:42 AM
I was curious about something in regards to Span, in large part because I happen to have on my shirt with his name on the back today, and due to the frequent discussions about trading him (and how much value he actually has).

I don't offer this statistic up as anything other than a statistic that surprised me. According to baseball-reference, Denard Span is currently #13 among position players in the AL in WAR at 3.5. Josh Willingham is the next highest Twin at 3.0 (#21), with Joe Mauer at 2.6 (#28).

Please commence arguments about how good a statistic WAR actually is... :-)

kab21
08-17-2012, 11:57 PM
Imo the do anything to get to 80 wins plan could set this franchise back years in the rebuilding process.

First of all, I haven't seen anyone saying the Twins should "do anything" to get back to immediate contention next year. But I'd certainly argue that the team should look for young players that can help right away and put some of their freed up payroll into pitchers that can make an impact. The alternative is to have the Pohlads pocket the $20 million rather than spending it in free agency, and trading away all veteran assets for prospects. Maybe a nice theory until you look at the job this organization has done of evaluating young talent in recent years.

The Twins aren't in a position like the Pirates and Royals because they have no tradable superstars. They have guys like Span, Willingham and Morneau that they can probably move for B-prospects. That's not a great recipe for rebuilding, especially when the kind of lesser prospects you tend to target are almost always some variation of Pedro Hernandez and Eduardo Escobar.

I'm all for signing a FA pitcher until it becomes 5/80M deal for an early 30's average pitcher. That's the problem with FA. The EVIL Pohlads might pocket a little money in the short term but they retain payroll flexibility for future teams.

Nobody has suggested trading Willingham or Span for some variation of Pedro Hernandez or Eduardo Escobar. There is no deadline to trade those 2 since they are signed for multiple seasons but it's time (was time) to make them available to pick up some legitimate MiLB talent.

Ultima Ratio
08-18-2012, 12:30 AM
Kab, the pirates were a farm team for the past 10-15 years. Every good and decent player was traded for prospects whom were traded if they too became good/decent and in the final years of arbitration. Just to name a few. Freddy Garcia, Niger Morgan, Jason Bay, Aramis Ramirez, Brian Giles, Jason Kendell (in his prime) and many more. The reason is because the GM in those years -- and still now -- was told to dramatically lower payroll. Low payroll makes it hard to keep good players and so goes the tale of a crappy baseball team for the past 20 years. GO BUCS!

You don't really understand why the Pirates were awful for so long. They had one of the lowest MLB payrolls and they were also really cheap in the draft bypassing the BPA for signability several times. Combine that with making awful decisions at the MLB level and you are left with an org that eventually has to trade the few good players that they produced. They were simply a complete failure as an organization that never had a rebuilding plan until recently when they started spending megabucks in the draft.

Did you even read my post?

Very low payroll (yep, also can't sign top guys), selling every good player (even when you get tops guys), 15-20 years (without top guys) = bad team for 20 years until now (now they have top guys and have paid to keep a couple). There, I've condensed it.

kab21
08-18-2012, 12:43 AM
Did you even read my post?

Very low payroll (yep, also can't sign top guys), selling every good player (even when you get tops guys), 15-20 years (without top guys) = bad team for 20 years until now (now they have top guys and have paid to keep a couple). There, I've condensed it.

I guess I interpreted it as a defense that the Pirates have been rebuilding for the last 20 years. They never built or rebuilt anything in that time.

Ultima Ratio
08-18-2012, 12:46 AM
Did you even read my post?

Very low payroll (yep, also can't sign top guys), selling every good player (even when you get tops guys), 15-20 years (without top guys) = bad team for 20 years until now (now they have top guys and have paid to keep a couple). There, I've condensed it.

I guess I interpreted it as a defense that the Pirates have been rebuilding for the last 20 years. They never built or rebuilt anything in that time.

Now you've got it :jump:

PopRiveter
08-18-2012, 03:17 AM
If we trade him in the offseason, the buyer gets two years of his service at a reasonable cost. If we wait till trade deadline next summer, buyer only gets one and a half years. His value is higher now even if he produces at the same rate next year, which is questionable.
Wrong. He becomes more valuable when a team realizes they are in it at the deadline and injury or an unproductive season from a single regular outfielder has them convinced that Willinghammer pushes them over the edge. 30+ year olds are at their lowest value in the offseason because they have to be compared with the whole free agent market and a team's own entire cast of milb hopefuls. If they were going to trade him, it should've been this last deadline. Now, if you want to maximize his value, you are probably best to just let him keep outperforming his contract.

twinstalker
08-18-2012, 05:06 AM
...Second, perhaps Willingham is not worth all that much to teams in the hunt. I don't doubt that Terry Ryan might fail to recognize a good offer, but I also can see where the best he was offered was someone like Tony Cingrani...

Ryan blew it by not shopping this guy and taking advantage of his best year (at age 33!)...

You kind of contradict yourself here by theorizing that the offer maybe wasn't enough, but then bashing Ryan for not taking it. How do we know what Terry Ryan was offered for The Hammer? What if it was a slightly better package than what we got for Frankie? Would you have supported trading him for a couple of replacement-type players with chances to be starters? Unless someone has hard, indisputable proof that TR passed up quality pitching in July, we all need to stop savaging him. After all, it's not like TR can just choose whoever he wants in a deal, the other team has to say yes too.

Understandable, because "in the hunt" wasn't meant to be typed. I must have been on poor autopilot. "In the hunt" should be "making offers" and my thought process was that the Reds were a team talking to him for another player (Span, tr: we want Cingrani, reds: you can't have him, though you could for JW, tr:not enough). From everything Ryan said, he didn't shop Willingham and gave no encouragement to teams putting out feelers. I am saying he might not have gotten enough of an offer for Willingham (which I believe), and that's probably because he didn't get any offers for him or maybe only one or two "feeler" type offers. You need to shop your best trade bait, hit it hard. You don't just wait for the phone to ring, and we all know that wrt Willingham, that's the best he did.

So...he needed to trade JW, and he probably wasn't offered enough if he was offered anything. I think that's pretty consistent, if my first statement wasn't. And it represents prettying bad GMing.