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View Full Version : Article: What's the Plan: Alex Meyer



Nick Nelson
08-15-2013, 09:29 PM
You can view the page at http://twinsdaily.com/content.php?r=2230-What-s-the-Plan-Alex-Meyer

AM.
08-15-2013, 10:49 PM
I personally would like to see him back pitching in AA soon. For example, how about in Bowie next weekend?

tjsyam921
08-15-2013, 11:04 PM
I think they give him the Gibson approach. Arizona fall league and start next year in AAA until he pitches with consistency.

orangevening
08-15-2013, 11:04 PM
Spot on. Meyers is a tough case. I feel bad for the FO, no matter what they do with Myers it could be the right decision or the wrong one. Lets see how that shoulder does in off-season, if it does well and ST goes well starting in Rochester makes sense to me

troyhobbs
08-15-2013, 11:20 PM
I wouldn't have him any further away than AAA next year, especially if they don't improve their starting 5 this off season.

TheLeviathan
08-16-2013, 12:16 AM
I wouldn't have him any further away than AAA next year, especially if they don't improve their starting 5 this off season.

I can appreciate the sentiment here but quite frankly, the status of next year's rotation should have no bearing on Meyer. THe Twins will hopefully do what's best for him regardless.

To me, that shoulder eliminates any shot of seeing him before June next year and I would imagine more of a late July call-up.

troyhobbs
08-16-2013, 06:21 AM
I can appreciate the sentiment here but quite frankly, the status of next year's rotation should have no bearing on Meyer. THe Twins will hopefully do what's best for him regardless.

To me, that shoulder eliminates any shot of seeing him before June next year and I would imagine more of a late July call-up.

Obviously if his shoulder is an issue that changes things but if it's not and their pitching isn't vastly improved then he should have good enough stuff to crack the rotation at point next year.

Seth Stohs
08-16-2013, 07:08 AM
I can appreciate the sentiment here but quite frankly, the status of next year's rotation should have no bearing on Meyer. THe Twins will hopefully do what's best for him regardless.

To me, that shoulder eliminates any shot of seeing him before June next year and I would imagine more of a late July call-up.

100% agree... no matter what the Twins rotation looks like, they need to do what's best for Meyer. I won't pretend to know what the answer to that is. But, he did get 3 innings in the GCL on Wednesday. Maybe by next Monday or Tuesday, he can go 4 innings, maybe 5 depending on pitches. Then, I'd send him back to New Britain, still on a pitch count. I think the Twins will send him to the AFL. I think they'll sign the waiver which means he'd go there with no restrictions other than common sense.

The key is his health. That's really all that matters. If he's healthy, I think he starts at Rochester and I think he could be up as early as June. That's pretty aggressive itself. There is no need to rush him. Age is not a factor. Shouldn't be, at least. If they deem he should spend a month in New Britain to start the season, there's really no negative in that at all. Let him dominate there for a month, then go to Rochester for a month or two.

I hate to sound like a broken record, but doing the right thing (health-wise and promotion-wise) is the most important thing for these high-level prospects, regardless of what is going on with the Twins or around them.

mike wants wins
08-16-2013, 07:08 AM
If healthy, I would push for AAA next year. I have no idea what the twins will do.

TheLeviathan
08-16-2013, 07:31 AM
Obviously if his shoulder is an issue that changes things but if it's not and their pitching isn't vastly improved then he should have good enough stuff to crack the rotation at point next year.

At some point, maybe. I just don't like the implication that we're judging Meyer by our other starters. He's most likely going to be better than any of them talent-wise. But our only consideration should be his readiness.

troyhobbs
08-16-2013, 08:22 AM
Not really disagreeing just saying if he's healthy then he should be ready or close to it and if the Twins can win more games with him than without him that should matter at least a little bit...unless they're on a course for another 90 losses

Monkeypaws
08-16-2013, 08:31 AM
So is Meyer going to be on an inning limit next season? He only threw 129 innings last season, and only 65 so far this season. What is that rule of thumb about increasing a pitcher's innings from one season to the next?

crarko
08-16-2013, 08:59 AM
I'd expect the plan for him to closely mirror Gibson's. Including a likely innings limit in 2014 following a mid-season callup.

Mr. Brooks
08-16-2013, 09:39 AM
So is Meyer going to be on an inning limit next season? He only threw 129 innings last season, and only 65 so far this season. What is that rule of thumb about increasing a pitcher's innings from one season to the next?

Its often a 60% increase.
So if he manages to throw 100 this year, you wouldn't want him throwing more than 160 next year.
Of course that is not a hard line, its a case by case basis. But, I think this is why he needs to go to the AFL. If he can get up to 130+ combined innings, then he should be fine to throw a full workload next year.

drjim
08-16-2013, 09:47 AM
Its often a 60% increase.
So if he manages to throw 100 this year, you wouldn't want him throwing more than 160 next year.
Of course that is not a hard line, its a case by case basis. But, I think this is why he needs to go to the AFL. If he can get up to 130+ combined innings, then he should be fine to throw a full workload next year.

There is also the thought you don't "reset" innings but can increase upon the season total before the injury season.

Cris E
08-16-2013, 11:16 AM
I'd do AFL this year and then start at AA in 2014 and move him up as performance dictates. There really shouldn't be anyone standing between him and Target Field, so let his development be your guide. He needs his skills to ripen, but empty innings at any particular level for the sake of "paying dues" is dumb.

SpitefulRabbit617
08-16-2013, 12:40 PM
If he does goto the AFL, what is that considered a near equivalent to minors-wise? AA? AAA? AA+?

Mr. Brooks
08-16-2013, 12:46 PM
If he does goto the AFL, what is that considered a near equivalent to minors-wise? AA? AAA? AA+?

I'd say it's about the equivilant of AA, with it being a little easier than that for hitters, and a little tougher than that for pitchers (just due to the fact that some pitchers maybe tiring a bit by that time of the year, while some hitters are really getting into a "groove" by then.)

Seth Stohs
08-16-2013, 12:48 PM
If he does goto the AFL, what is that considered a near equivalent to minors-wise? AA? AAA? AA+?

The rules of the league say that a team can send 6-7 players and just two of them can be from lower than AA, so the talents is at least the AA level, and some of the prospects are great.

DAM DC Twins Fans
08-16-2013, 04:22 PM
I am hesitant to send him to the AFL this fall--why not just conclude 2013 was a lost year and let him rest.

Definitely start him in Rochester in 2014--no need to spend another year in AA.

spycake
08-16-2013, 04:40 PM
The Twins did promote Kyle Lohse from AA, as well as Brad Thomas and I think Adam Johnson. But they were pretty AA crazy back in 2001.

Oh, and Scott Erickson back in 1990!

Thrylos
08-16-2013, 05:45 PM
About Meyer's (and May's too) numbers this season:

- Meyer has a 2.82 FIP
- His (and May's and most of the NB Ps) BABIP is in the .3xxs because of the bad New Britain D (of the range part, and this is obvious to all of us who have watched them play)
- His xFIP is probably in the low 2s

This seems like a guy who if healthy can do better than most (if not all) the people in the Twins' rotation today. I hope he has a chance to fight for a spot in the rotation next ST.

Mr. Brooks
08-16-2013, 06:16 PM
About Meyer's (and May's too) numbers this season:

- Meyer has a 2.82 FIP
- His (and May's and most of the NB Ps) BABIP is in the .3xxs because of the bad New Britain D (of the range part, and this is obvious to all of us who have watched them play)
- His xFIP is probably in the low 2s

This seems like a guy who if healthy can do better than most (if not all) the people in the Twins' rotation today. I hope he has a chance to fight for a spot in the rotation next ST.

The Twins FO doesn't look at FIP and xFIP.
They don't even know what it is.
I'm not being a smart ass, Rob Antony literally thought it stood for "first strike in inning pitched".

Twins thrive without sabermetrics - SweetSpot Blog - ESPN (http://espn.go.com/blog/sweetspot/post/_/id/3040/twins-thrive-without-sabermetrics)

Jim H
08-16-2013, 06:33 PM
I understand FIP and xFIP, Antony is probably better off not understanding it. I suspect the Twins do understand the effect that defense and the lack of it can have on their pitchers.

Mr. Brooks
08-16-2013, 06:37 PM
I understand FIP and xFIP, Antony is probably better off not understanding it. I suspect the Twins do understand the effect that defense and the lack of it can have on their pitchers.

I can't think of one good reason why an MLB assistant GM would be better off not understanding what something as simple as FIP is.
Like the article says, even if you choose not to use it, it is SHOCKING that he literally did not even know what it meant. It's like they live in a bubble.

Thrylos
08-16-2013, 07:19 PM
It's like they live in a bubble.

It's a back to the future situation... Ryan carries a 5 pounder notebook (like a big three ring binder size) to ST games with him

Oxtung
08-16-2013, 08:55 PM
In this (http://twinsdaily.com/minnesota-twins-talk/8320-arizona-fall-league-predictions.html#post150445) thread about AFL predictions PseudoSABR listed the eligibility rules. One of them was:


To be eligible, players on Minor League disabled lists must be activated at least 45 days before the conclusion of their respective seasons.

If that is correct then Meyer would not be eligible for AFL.

diehardtwinsfan
08-16-2013, 09:18 PM
In this (http://twinsdaily.com/minnesota-twins-talk/8320-arizona-fall-league-predictions.html#post150445) thread about AFL predictions PseudoSABR listed the eligibility rules. One of them was:



If that is correct then Meyer would not be eligible for AFL.

You can file an exemption.

Oxtung
08-16-2013, 10:01 PM
You can file an exemption.

What's the criteria for an exception and how often is it granted?

diehardtwinsfan
08-17-2013, 06:34 AM
What's the criteria for an exception and how often is it granted?

That I don't know... Seth might.

drjim
08-17-2013, 10:42 AM
What's the criteria for an exception and how often is it granted?

I think it would be granted if it is proven that Meyer is healthy enough to pitch. They wouldn't want him dropping out right away and leaving the team short.

Ryan said a couple days ago that six spots are locked in and one is in "flux". I would guess that was a reference to Meyer.

Mr. Brooks
08-17-2013, 11:58 AM
What's the criteria for an exception and how often is it granted?

From what I understand, as long as the Twins sign a waiver saying that Meyer doesn't have any significant pitch/innings limit (within common sense), the exemption would almost certainly be granted.

jokin
08-17-2013, 12:15 PM
I can't think of one good reason why an MLB assistant GM would be better off not understanding what something as simple as FIP is.
Like the article says, even if you choose not to use it, it is SHOCKING that he literally did not even know what it meant. It's like they live in a bubble.

While not surprising one bit....this is still just plain sad.

drjim
08-17-2013, 12:29 PM
While not surprising one bit....this is still just plain sad.

I would look at it a little different. If you know and understand the components of fip then it probably doesn't matter a whole lot if you know what fip actually is (it is a made up number after all). Despite the terrible k rates of starters, I'm quite confident the Twins front office knows that ks and gbs are good and that bbs and hrs are bad.

My much bigger concern is how far behind they are in other metrics/analysis that we don't even have access to as casual fans. Good scouting, which the Twins have, can neutralize this to some degree but they are definitely leaving value on the table.

jokin
08-17-2013, 12:39 PM
It's a back to the future situation... Ryan carries a 5 pounder notebook (like a big three ring binder size) to ST games with him

Gee, my Dell Notebook only weighs about 3 pounds.... oh wait.....you meant something else, didn't you? TR walks around with 5 pounds of paper, huh?

Mr. Brooks
08-17-2013, 12:39 PM
I would look at it a little different. If you know and understand the components of fip then it probably doesn't matter a whole lot if you know what fip actually is (it is a made up number after all). Despite the terrible k rates of starters, I'm quite confident the Twins front office knows that ks and gbs are good and that bbs and hrs are bad.

My much bigger concern is how far behind they are in other metrics/analysis that we don't even have access to as casual fans. Good scouting, which the Twins have, can neutralize this to some degree but they are definitely leaving value on the table.

My point is that it seems to me you would have to be living in a cave or something to be an assistant GM in MLB, and to have never come across, or discussed something as basic, simple, and common as FIP.
That tells me that the Twins only surround themselves with themselves, there is no input or dialogue with anyone outside of a very small group, which is alarming, and explains part (not all) of how we got where we are.

jokin
08-17-2013, 12:46 PM
I would look at it a little different. If you know and understand the components of fip then it probably doesn't matter a whole lot if you know what fip actually is (it is a made up number after all). Despite the terrible k rates of starters, I'm quite confident the Twins front office knows that ks and gbs are good and that bbs and hrs are bad.

My much bigger concern is how far behind they are in other metrics/analysis that we don't even have access to as casual fans. Good scouting, which the Twins have, can neutralize this to some degree but they are definitely leaving value on the table.

Point well taken in your first paragraph, but isn't Anthony's demonstrated ignorance just symptomatic to the stated concerns we all have contained in your second paragraph?

I am ever-reminded when the "wizard inadvertently drew back the curtain" during a spring training interview (I think it was StarTribune). You must remember the interview with TR and Gardy?.... when unassuming Jack Goin happened upon Ryan's office for a moment, and when he left, both the GM and the manager felt most comfortable back-handedly mocking both Goin and the "alleged" value derived from advanced metric analysis. Most cringeworthy.

drjim
08-17-2013, 01:03 PM
Point well taken in your first paragraph, but isn't Anthony's demonstrated ignorance just symptomatic to the stated concerns we all have contained in your second paragraph?

I am ever-reminded when the "wizard inadvertently drew back the curtain" during a spring training interview (I think it was StarTribune). You must remember the interview with TR and Gardy?.... when unassuming Jack Goin happened upon Ryan's office for a moment, and when he left, both the GM and the manager felt most comfortable back-handedly mocking both Goin and the "alleged" value derived from advanced metric analysis. Most cringeworthy.

Yes on the first paragraph.

The second paragraph brings up a point that was much debated, and not surprisingly people had a vastly different interpretation of that article than you did.

jokin
08-17-2013, 01:14 PM
Yes on the first paragraph.

The second paragraph brings up a point that was much debated, and not surprisingly people had a vastly different interpretation of that article than you did.

The article contained little that needed interpretation, that's why I included the "wizard/curtain" analogy. It seemed pretty obvious to conclude from their comments that the Twins braintrust is trying, but is still uncomfortable with advanced metrics..... and, in turn, most comfortable using, and relying more upon traditional (some would say "archaic") strategic methodology and good-old-boy, napkin-scribbled-upon, scouting reports.

howieramone
08-17-2013, 01:21 PM
I don't think the Twins organization lags behind anyone or lacks for anything. The ownership practically invented money, and begged Ryan to come out of semi-retirement to right the ship. Ryan is recognized amongst his peers as one of the finest minds in all of baseball and if there was anything he needed, I'm sure Barbara Eden would show up in his office promptly.

diehardtwinsfan
08-17-2013, 02:02 PM
I do think the Twins would benefit from using advanced metrics a bit more, but let's be fair here too. There's lots of garbage with this as well. I don't have too much of an issue being cautious implementing it. Unfortunately with this one, we are going to have to see how it plays out, and the metrics guy is going to have to prove his worth. I hope he's good at what he does.

fairweather
08-18-2013, 09:38 AM
As much as I hate to participate in the comment section of a website that practices censorship I guess I can't resist at this moment. I remember reading a piece about Meyers prior to his shoulder problems. The piece talked about his height and the fact that he has kind of a 3/4 arm slot. Then it talked about how the Twins were trying to "tweek" his delivery to create "downward plain". They were talking specifically about shortening his stride and changing his arm slot ever so slightly. My question is could those changes have led to him straining muscles in his shoulder that were previously used less with his old mechanics? Furthermore, why do the Twins feel every pitcher has to throw a sinker? This obsession with downward plain to me is like the obsession with hitting the ball the other way. Just because that works good in many cases for marginally talented players doesn't mean you should force the supremely talented players to conform to these ridiculous idea's about the 1 right way to do things. The Twins Way lol

Mr. Brooks
08-18-2013, 11:43 AM
As much as I hate to participate in the comment section of a website that practices censorship I guess I can't resist at this moment. I remember reading a piece about Meyers prior to his shoulder problems. The piece talked about his height and the fact that he has kind of a 3/4 arm slot. Then it talked about how the Twins were trying to "tweek" his delivery to create "downward plain". They were talking specifically about shortening his stride and changing his arm slot ever so slightly. My question is could those changes have led to him straining muscles in his shoulder that were previously used less with his old mechanics? Furthermore, why do the Twins feel every pitcher has to throw a sinker? This obsession with downward plain to me is like the obsession with hitting the ball the other way. Just because that works good in many cases for marginally talented players doesn't mean you should force the supremely talented players to conform to these ridiculous idea's about the 1 right way to do things. The Twins Way lol

He already threw a sinker before we acquired him.

Steve Lein
08-20-2013, 10:46 AM
My question is could those changes have led to him straining muscles in his shoulder that were previously used less with his old mechanics?

I honestly believe that this is the root of many arm-problems across all of baseball.

If a guy has thrown the same for 5, maybe even 10 years by the time he's this high in the minors, those muscles are trained to recover properly with how they are used. His mechanics might not be the best fit for what you look for, but they're going to serve the guy better than overhauling them completely, in my opinion. When you start tweaking with those muscle actions, the whole muscle-memory (whatever the heck you would call it) resiliency isn't going to translate they way it did before.

Think of like a hitter. There's not a 'template' for having the perfect swing. You take the guys natural ability and motions, and work with them maximize them. Should be the same for pitchers. Something like changing an arm-slot for a pitcher is definitely messing with those natural abilities and motions.

ashburyjohn
08-20-2013, 12:47 PM
Think of like a hitter. There's not a 'template' for having the perfect swing. You take the guys natural ability and motions, and work with them maximize them. Should be the same for pitchers. Something like changing an arm-slot for a pitcher is definitely messing with those natural abilities and motions.

Isn't Dozier's recent uptick in hitting performance said to be due to some fairly major tinkering?

IdahoPilgrim
08-20-2013, 12:55 PM
Isn't Dozier's recent uptick in hitting performance said to be due to some fairly major tinkering?

Good point, but I think the comparison is a little problematic, in that rarely does a change in a hitter's swing cause an injury that sidelines a person for months.

That said there are also cases where adjustments in pitching motion have led to increased effectiveness; there's a reason all teams have pitching coaches.

This whole debate reminds me of golf and the debate over the "perfect" golf swing. Sometimes you have very unconventional swings that yield good results and you should just leave it alone. Sometimes bad mechanics need to be corrected before a golfer can be truly effective. The trick is to know which case is which.

ashburyjohn
08-20-2013, 01:28 PM
Good point, but I think the comparison is a little problematic

That really was my point.

Steve Lein
08-20-2013, 01:40 PM
Isn't Dozier's recent uptick in hitting performance said to be due to some fairly major tinkering?

I wouldn't call Dozier's adjustments "Major Tinkering." As Parker discussed in his article last week, it was more a function of quickening his timing mechanism, not completely overhauling his setup/hands/hip rotation/etc...

To quote that article:

"Brunansky admitted earlier in the season that his approach is about getting hitters to have a feel for the swing rather than replicate something visually (http://twinsdaily.com/1714-tom-brunansky-getting-feel-job.html). Dozier’s problem, Brunansky diagnosed, was his timing."

I'd call changing a guy's arm slot a pretty major adjustment as far as pitching is concerned. Changing when a guy gets hits foot down in the batters box to trigger hip rotation on his swing earlier, is not. Physically, that doesn't change anything, whereas an arm slot does for a pitcher.

snepp
08-20-2013, 03:23 PM
As much as I hate to participate in the comment section of a website that practices censorship I guess I can't resist at this moment.

The only thing getting "censored" are policy violations. It's a very simple concept, don't violate policy, nothing gets censored.

If you truly hate it that much, Rubechat is always open for business, they don't censor anything.

drjim
08-20-2013, 03:37 PM
Heading back to New Britain.

jokin
08-20-2013, 03:42 PM
Heading back to New Britain.

Great news. Hopefully all goes well and we can look forward to a September call-up or AFL.

PseudoSABR
08-20-2013, 03:42 PM
Mike Berardino ‏@MikeBerardino (https://twitter.com/MikeBerardino) 21m (https://twitter.com/MikeBerardino/status/369916625949949952) Alex Meyer touched 98 on Monday. Being promoted back to New Britain

(https://twitter.com/MikeBerardino/status/369916625949949952)

jokin
08-20-2013, 04:17 PM
Mike Berardino ‏@MikeBerardino (https://twitter.com/MikeBerardino) 21m (https://twitter.com/MikeBerardino/status/369916625949949952) Alex Meyer touched 98 on Monday. Being promoted back to New Britain



Sounds like Meyer was being a little mean on those poor, over-matched teenagers in the GCL. In this particular case, though......wow, what great news!

kab21
08-21-2013, 11:11 AM
I honestly believe that this is the root of many arm-problems across all of baseball.

If a guy has thrown the same for 5, maybe even 10 years by the time he's this high in the minors, those muscles are trained to recover properly with how they are used. His mechanics might not be the best fit for what you look for, but they're going to serve the guy better than overhauling them completely, in my opinion. When you start tweaking with those muscle actions, the whole muscle-memory (whatever the heck you would call it) resiliency isn't going to translate they way it did before.

Think of like a hitter. There's not a 'template' for having the perfect swing. You take the guys natural ability and motions, and work with them maximize them. Should be the same for pitchers. Something like changing an arm-slot for a pitcher is definitely messing with those natural abilities and motions.

I disagree. HS and even college players simply don't log as many innings as minor and major league players. Someone with poor mechanics can avoid an injury with a lighter workload. They can also survive in HS and even college w/o throwing as many breaking balls which put more stress on the arm.

I'm sure that there are some cases where tinkering causes injuries but bad mechanics are usually bad mechanics. I remember watching video of the relief pitchers from last year's draft. I wasn't against converting RP'ers to starters but I couldn't understand how a couple of those guys would last with a starters workload. My arm hurt just watching them and 2 of those picks have barely pitched this season.

Steve Lein
08-22-2013, 05:38 PM
I disagree. HS and even college players simply don't log as many innings as minor and major league players. Someone with poor mechanics can avoid an injury with a lighter workload. They can also survive in HS and even college w/o throwing as many breaking balls which put more stress on the arm.

I'm sure that there are some cases where tinkering causes injuries but bad mechanics are usually bad mechanics. I remember watching video of the relief pitchers from last year's draft. I wasn't against converting RP'ers to starters but I couldn't understand how a couple of those guys would last with a starters workload. My arm hurt just watching them and 2 of those picks have barely pitched this season.

I don't disagree with this stance either, but to throw a bone, there are exceptions on each side.

Alex Wimmers' elbow didn't blow up because of overuse when turning pro, for instance, and he also was regarded as having great mechanics when drafted.

And there are guys with bad mechanics who have never had major arm problems. Like Chris Sale, for example.

kab21
08-23-2013, 11:00 AM
I don't disagree with this stance either, but to throw a bone, there are exceptions on each side.

Alex Wimmers' elbow didn't blow up because of overuse when turning pro, for instance, and he also was regarded as having great mechanics when drafted.

And there are guys with bad mechanics who have never had major arm problems. Like Chris Sale, for example.

Of course there are exceptions but the big one is simply the act of throwing a ball overhand. Going from pitching every 7 days to every 5 days and longer seasons make things even worse.

slightlydif
08-25-2013, 03:29 AM
The only thing getting "censored" are policy violations. It's a very simple concept, don't violate policy, nothing gets censored. If you truly hate it that much, Rubechat is always open for business, they don't censor anything. or not