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twinsfan34
10-10-2013, 08:33 AM
You can view the page at http://twinsdaily.com/content.php?r=2396-Pitching-and-Playoffs-Through-the-Farm-System-Free-Agency-or-Trades

John Bonnes
10-10-2013, 08:43 AM
This is an interesting study, but I'd argue that the conclusion overreaches somewhat. What it shows is this: the good teams this year have been very good at developing their own playoff-caliber starting pitching. Which is a great thing to keep in mind.

Unfortunately, there isn't a lot of evidence that the Twins have done that. So then the question becomes - what other options do the Twins have? Or another question might be this: until the Twins have a playoff-caliber rotation, should they settle for one of the worst rotations in MLB, or should be feel obligated to try and overspend (which is what free agency does, no question) to field a somewhat competitive team?

I don't think Terry Ryan is a stooge (or a scrooge). Ultimately, I believe in his philosophy of building up the minor league assets until a team can breakthrough. What I question is what the team should do until that happens. I don't believe the answer to that is "Pocket cash."

However, it IS a very interesting study. It really drives home how important it is for an organization to develop it's own starting pitching. Thanks very much for putting this together.

jharaldson
10-10-2013, 09:20 AM
Teams that follow your lessons tend to have low payrolls because of a reliance on players in team control and trades of veterans for prospects. Here is a chart showing playoff performance over the past 5 years.



Year
Team
Playoffs
Champion


2011
Rays
42



2008
Rays
43



2011
Diamondbacks
53



2012
A's
55



2010
Rangers
55



2009
Twins
65



2010
Rays
72



2010
Reds
72



2009
Rockies
75



2012
Orioles
81



2012
Nationals
81



2008
Brewers
81



2012
Reds
82



2010
Braves
84



2011
Brewers
86



2009
Cardinals
88



2011
Rangers
92



2010
Twins
98



2010
Giants

98


2008
Phillies

98


2009
Dodgers
100



2011
Cardinals

105


2011
Tigers
106



2012
Cardinals
110



2009
Phillies
113



2009
Angels
114



2012
Giants

118


2008
Cubs
118



2008
Dodgers
118



2008
Angels
119



2008
White Sox
121



2009
Red Sox
123



2012
Tigers
132



2008
Red Sox
133



2010
Phillies
142



2011
Phillies
173



2012
Yankees
198



2009
Yankees

201


2011
Yankees
202



2010
Yankees
206





103.8
124



A couple of things I note:

1. No team with a payroll under $95 million has won the World Series.
2. Only 1 team with a payroll over $120 million has won the World Series.

My conclusion is that the best teams don't rely on just one way to build a team (Farm vs. Free Agent) but they do both.

IdahoPilgrim
10-10-2013, 10:07 AM
A couple of things I note:

1. No team with a payroll under $95 million has won the World Series.
2. Only 1 team with a payroll over $120 million has won the World Series.

My conclusion is that the best teams don't rely on just one way to build a team (Farm vs. Free Agent) but they do both.

I don't think this necessarily follows - it assumes that teams with high payrolls primarily are built from free agency and teams with low payrolls are primarily built from the farm system, but it needs to be shown that that is a valid correlation.

Higher payroll can also sometimes come from re-signing your own players before they get to free agency (Mauer, Morneau, etc) but that still counts as being built by the farm system, and the OP pointed out two examples of FA signings that actually came very cheaply.

beckmt
10-10-2013, 10:18 AM
One note I picked up. Most of the teams in the Twins payroll mode have at least 3 pitchers that are from the farm system. Only Pittsburg does not have 3 and one of there pitchers came in a trade when they had little or no time in the majors.(Morton) Gist is that pitching still wins and the Twins need to get it to compete.

DAM DC Twins Fans
10-10-2013, 10:34 AM
Great article took a lot of work. Interesting to note the amount of pitchers coming up thru the farm system for playoff teams. I have never been a proponent of buying lots of free agent pitchers because the good teams will resign their own top pitchers almost all the time. Pitchers in their 30s tend to be on a down trend.

So yes, I agree with Terry Ryan approach. The problem seems to be that the Twins (until recently) haven't been drafting good pitchers and not developing them.

So the answer to me is first fire Rick Anderson; second wait for the current crop of good pitchers in the low minors (Stewart, Gonalves, Lee, Berrios, Duffey, etc.); third keep drafting pitching; fourth trade some of the top prospects (Hicks, Arcia, Rosario) for pitching.

blindeke
10-10-2013, 11:52 AM
that said, we could buy one or two.

Shane Wahl
10-10-2013, 12:11 PM
This is a great study. It's informative. I like John's comment though. A lot of successful teams ARE buying at least one top notch or second notch pitcher.

OldManWinter
10-10-2013, 12:44 PM
"Developing" pitchers SB done way before Rick Anderson ever sees them. He may be in a position to tweak skills but the majority of "developing" cannot be accomplished at the MLB level.

Sconnie
10-10-2013, 12:50 PM
Teams that follow your lessons tend to have low payrolls because of a reliance on players in team control and trades of veterans for prospects. Here is a chart showing playoff performance over the past 5 years.

A couple of things I note:

1. No team with a payroll under $95 million has won the World Series.
2. Only 1 team with a payroll over $120 million has won the World Series.

My conclusion is that the best teams don't rely on just one way to build a team (Farm vs. Free Agent) but they do both.

3. More teams over 95 mil have been to the playoffs than under
4. It appears that the payroll trend is up for playoff teams

nicksaviking
10-10-2013, 01:42 PM
Great study and a good reference. Though this shows how the good teams are currently assembled, would it look much different than the bad teams?

Because while we would all love to have a farm raised stable of lights out starters, the Twins have proven to be very poor at developing the kind of starters who can impact a playoff game. So if you are deficient in one area, don't you then need to redouble your efforts in another, even if it is not ideal?

terencemann
10-10-2013, 01:43 PM
I would point out that a lot of those teams, even the ones who have been relevant for a while like the Braves, Cards, and Rays, keep the farm system pumping and don't cling to players after their useful value to the team has expired (at least not by too much). The Braves, Cards and Pirates use free agency and trades to acquire talented players but it's the flexibility their farm systems give them that allows them to do that.

Rosterman
10-10-2013, 04:38 PM
The Twins could be the same in 4-5 years. Gibson, Meyer, May, Berrios, Stewart, and a couple more. Nice if you can supplement with an occasional free agent. Part of it is trading vets for pieces that are on the horizon (like they did with Meyer and May (and Worley). Maybe we all need to just stop thinking of money. Yes, the Twins will spend 50%+ of revenue, supposedly. But are they required to do so...I fear not. Maybe if they said "Spend the money or we are giving it back to the fans" I would be happier. But spending is like giving it back to the fans, in a ways.

Alex
10-10-2013, 05:58 PM
It's so tiring to hear the point-of-view that argues against spending, as if those who argue for it think it's possible to build a rotation only through spending and that we could care less about the farm system.

That just isn't the case, as others have mentioned, the Twins have left themselves little choice at this point. We'd all love if the Twins had shown themselves capable of drafting and developing a full rotation. Right now, the only capable pitcher -- brought through the Twins system -- anywhere near the bigs looks like Gibson and he's hasn't pitched like a top 1 or 2 (or even 3 or 4 so far).

jtkoupal
10-10-2013, 07:02 PM
There is a lot that can be speculated, and the numbers showed certainly don't lie. However, I believe that the answer for the Twins lies with all three. There is so much work that needs to be done to get this team on the right track, and in my opinion, it starts with the offense. The offense was a bigger problem than our pitching this past year, getting shut down by nobody pitchers night after night. But the rotation is in desperate need of some help as well.

What we need is something along the lines of this:

FA acquisition
FA acquisition/trade acquisition
Correia
Diamond
Gibson

If I'm the Twins, I'm looking at a top line pitcher. We only have about $60M in commitments this coming year, and that could drop if Willingham and/or Doumit get traded. The bottom line, we have money, the money needs to be spent on pitching that won't knock us out in the 2nd inning constantly.

I'd be looking at:

Rickey Nolasco
Ervin Santana
Matt Garza
Masahiro Tanaka
Tim Lincecum (barring qualifying offer)
Scott Feldman
Ubaldo Jimenez
Josh Johnson
Phil Hughes
Wandy Rodriguez

The Twins are not big spenders usually, but I think one or two of these players need to be signed if we are going anywhere. I'd personally like to see Nolasco and Johnson, they pitched together in Miami, are veterans, and are better than what we have, but they will come at a price. A price that needs to be paid.

Go Twins

Major Leauge Ready
10-10-2013, 07:30 PM
Great study and a good reference. Though this shows how the good teams are currently assembled, would it look much different than the bad teams?

Because while we would all love to have a farm raised stable of lights out starters, the Twins have proven to be very poor at developing the kind of starters who can impact a playoff game. So if you are deficient in one area, don't you then need to redouble your efforts in another, even if it is not ideal?


In a word, no. When there is a model that is clearly the most effective, and your organization has not performed in said function, you need to "redouble" your efforts to improve in the area that is the most effective, not increase you efforts in a less effective model.

clutterheart
10-10-2013, 07:49 PM
I am not hoping the Twins spend money on pitching so they can get to the playoffs - butt it would be nice. I would like the Twins to spend money on pitching so they can become an average professional baseball team.

twinsfan34
10-10-2013, 08:27 PM
Great study and a good reference. Though this shows how the good teams are currently assembled, would it look much different than the bad teams?

Because while we would all love to have a farm raised stable of lights out starters, the Twins have proven to be very poor at developing the kind of starters who can impact a playoff game. So if you are deficient in one area, don't you then need to redouble your efforts in another, even if it is not ideal?

Great Question Nickssaviking,

I ran a quick run through of teams starting from the bottom, the Houston Astros. It's quite different from the successful teams - the 'farm' still wins, but only by 1 player out of the bottom 11 teams. If you pull the Mets from there (a healthy David Wright, et al) you would find the main method of putting together a starting rotation by the worst teams in MLB is by Free Agency (reaching perhaps?).

5834

I have a question: Is it possible that Free Agency Starting Pitching is the Running Backs of the NFL. That is, find someone young, when he's getting expensive, and arguably not as good or likely to be successful, get trade him or let him walk for a 1st RD compensatory pick (a second 1st RD pick from the signing team if not a bottom 10 team and you offered him top 125 player money).

Here's a breakdown of the pitching staffs:

Houston Astros (51-111)


Dallas Keuchel - $503K– Farm
Lucas Harrell – $501K – Waivers
Erik Bedard – $1.15M - Free Agent
Jordan Lyles - $500K – Farm
Brad Peacock - $490K – Trade

Miami Marlins – 62-100


Jose Fernandez – Farm
Tom Koehler – Farm
Jacob Turner – Trade
Nathan Eovaldi – Trade
Henderson Alvarez - Trade

Chicago White Sox (63-99)


Chris Sale - $850K - Farm
Jose Quintana - $505K – Minor League FA
Hector Santiago - $505K - Farm
John Danks - $14.25M – Trade
Dylan Axelrod - $493K - Farm

Chicago Cubs (66-96)


Jeff Samardzija – Farm
Travis Wood - $528K – Trade
Edwin Jackson - $13M – Free Agent
Scott Feldman - $7M – Free Agent
Carlos Villanueva - $5M – Free Agent

Minnesota Twins (66-96)


Kevin Correia – Free Agent
Mike Pelfrey – Free Agent
Scott Diamond – Farm (Rule 5, AAA, 1.5 yr in system)
Sam Deduno – Free Agent
Vance Worley – Free Agent

Seattle Mariners (71-91)


Felix Hernandez – Farm
Hisashi Iwakuma – Free Agent
Joe Saunders – Free Agent
Aaron Harang – Trade
Brandon Maurer - Farm

Philadelphia Phillies (73-89)


Cliff Lee – Free Agent
Cole Hamels – Farm
Kyle Hendrick – Farm
Roy Halladay – Free Agent
John Lannan – Free Agent

Blue Jays (74-88)


R.A. Dickey - Trade
Mark Buehrle – Trade
J.A. Happ – Trade
Josh Johnson – Trade
Esmil Rogers – Trade

New York Mets (74-88)


Matt Harvey - Farm
Dillon Gee - Farm
Jonathan Niese - Farm
Shawn Marcum – Free Agent
Zack Wheeler – Trade (but AA prospect, 2 yrs in Mets system)

Milwaukee Brewers (74-88)


Kyle Lohse – Free Agent
Wily Peralta - Farm
Yovani Gallardo - Farm
Marco Estrada - Waivers
Tom Gorzelanny – Free Agent

San Diego Padres (76-86)


Eric Stultz – Waivers
Andrew Cashner – Trade
Edinson Volquez – Trade
Jason Marquis – Free Agent
Tyson Ross – Trade

twinsfan34
10-10-2013, 08:33 PM
For some reason the chart wasn't coming through in the other comment...

Maybe this will work:
5835

Trevor0333
10-11-2013, 01:28 AM
This is an interesting study, but I'd argue that the conclusion overreaches somewhat. What it shows is this: the good teams this year have been very good at developing their own playoff-caliber starting pitching. Which is a great thing to keep in mind.

Unfortunately, there isn't a lot of evidence that the Twins have done that. So then the question becomes - what other options do the Twins have? Or another question might be this: until the Twins have a playoff-caliber rotation, should they settle for one of the worst rotations in MLB, or should be feel obligated to try and overspend (which is what free agency does, no question) to field a somewhat competitive team?

I don't think Terry Ryan is a stooge (or a scrooge). Ultimately, I believe in his philosophy of building up the minor league assets until a team can breakthrough. What I question is what the team should do until that happens. I don't believe the answer to that is "Pocket cash."

However, it IS a very interesting study. It really drives home how important it is for an organization to develop it's own starting pitching. Thanks very much for putting this together.

I do agree with Ryan's philosophy however, when your team has serious holes at a particular position you have to augment your roster with a signing here & there. Simply holding onto the unspent payroll for no other reason than they can't get the players on team friendly deals is rediculous. He needs to move off his stance from 97% against signing high profile FA to more like 80-85% against it if that makes sense.

iastfan112
10-11-2013, 01:41 AM
Worley was acquired via trade fyi.

mike wants wins
10-11-2013, 09:31 AM
I think you have cause and effect backward.....bad teams use a lot of FA pitching because they have sucked at drafting pitchers, so they use FA to fill in the gaping holes. They aren't bad because they use FA, they use FA because they are bad.......

I'm not sure I get the conclustion that they should therefore not sign FA.....should they just go with Hendriks, Albers, Worley, Gibson, and Deduno, and not care?

twinsfan34
10-12-2013, 12:18 AM
I think you have cause and effect backward.....bad teams use a lot of FA pitching because they have sucked at drafting pitchers, so they use FA to fill in the gaping holes. They aren't bad because they use FA, they use FA because they are bad.......

I'm not sure I get the conclution that they should therefore not sign FA.....should they just go with Hendriks, Albers, Worley, Gibson, and Deduno, and not care?

I think you're right. If drafting and other areas don't work out the tendency is to jump more fully into Free Agency. I think that's a healthy correlation. The other one - that may or may not be there - is the success or lack of success of teams that try to primarily 'win' with free agency. And for how long.

The latest collective bargaining agreement affected free agency a lot. Not so much in the contracts offered value wise, but in the compensation. It used to be you could trade for a Matt Garza, in a contract year, and then if you didn't resign him, you got a 1st RD draft pick by the type of Free Agent he is. If it was a team outside of the protected top 15 picks (15 worst teams) you also received their 1st RD pick. So in affect, they would give up the prospects Garza, but then you'd get two 1st round picks for him. Now a player must be offered a 'qualifying offer', last year it was $13.3M, this year it appears to be $14.1M. That is, unless Ervin Santana (Royals) is offered at least $14.1M for 1 season (or more) a team who signs him won't lose their 1st RD pick to the player's former team, the pick is just forfeited altogether. The team losing that player, if they offered at least a qualifying offer, would get a compensatory pick at the end of the 1st round.

What do you think that will do for free agency? The team losing the FA, now doesn't get as much compensation, that is they don't receive the pick from the signing team - will the team with the pending free agent then try harder to keep that player?

What it does for the Twins, who are in the top 10 picks, is we won't lose our 1st RD pick if we sign a 'top' (received a qualifying offer) free agent. But we would forfeit a 2nd rounder. So it's still the cost of signing the player as well as losing a high draft pick. So 'signing away' also hurts your farm system.

So did MLB do this in hopes of teams keeping their players? And did they do that knowing a player typically performs better for his home grown team versus signing for another? (assuming not a cast off)

The study wasn't so much, not caring. But that signing Free Agent starting pitching often didn't pay off. That is, it didn't result in wins for the team. Another guy did a WAR (wins above replacement) study and very few pitchers offered a WAR even above 2. So you pay $12M for 2 more wins than the next guy?

The past 4 years there were 42 starting pitchers signed via Free Agency. Only 16 even posted a winning record. The rest were awful. Look at the top salary guys from this past year. $13M this past year would have gotten you Dan Haren, Edwin Jackson, or Ryan Dempster. That is 10-14 W-L 4.67 ERA, 8-18 W-L 4.98 ERA, and 8-9 W-L 4.57 ERA.

We could have been WORSE as a team to sign those 3 guys and could have spent $40M in doing so.

They're just not affective if you have to start reaching for Free Agent Pitching.

Now, if you're talking about free agent hitting - that's a whole other matter and that can be and is successful. But winning pitching rotations are built primarily through the draft, secondarily through trades, and lastly, as often a final piece, through free agency - and often - they are not high salary guys.

I'm all for spending in Free Agency, but pitching is rare to return on it's value. It's why you have to pay $25M for a 34 year old Cliff Lee. Or $13M a piece for those studs (Dempster, Jackson, Haren) this past FA period.

Paying $13M to get Matt Garza isn't going to make us a winner.

glunn
10-12-2013, 01:48 AM
I enjoyed the article and have also enjoyed the responses.

I am not optimistic about getting anything better than a #3 starter through FA. On the other hand, a #3 starter would have made 2013 a lot more bearable.

TopGunn#22
10-12-2013, 09:46 AM
This is an interesting study, but I'd argue that the conclusion overreaches somewhat. What it shows is this: the good teams this year have been very good at developing their own playoff-caliber starting pitching. Which is a great thing to keep in mind.

Unfortunately, there isn't a lot of evidence that the Twins have done that. So then the question becomes - what other options do the Twins have? Or another question might be this: until the Twins have a playoff-caliber rotation, should they settle for one of the worst rotations in MLB, or should be feel obligated to try and overspend (which is what free agency does, no question) to field a somewhat competitive team?

I don't think Terry Ryan is a stooge (or a scrooge). Ultimately, I believe in his philosophy of building up the minor league assets until a team can breakthrough. What I question is what the team should do until that happens. I don't believe the answer to that is "Pocket cash."

However, it IS a very interesting study. It really drives home how important it is for an organization to develop it's own starting pitching. Thanks very much for putting this together.

There is no doubt that developing your own starting pitching is the best model. It's cheaper and provides stability going forward. But when your starting pitching has fallen to the depths the Twins has for the last 3-4 years you must move out of your comfort zone. The Tigers targeted SP's that they were willing to pay for both in both prospects and money via trades. They also went out and acquired bats (Cabrera, Fielder, Hunter, V-Mart, Infante). There really isn't a lot of home grown talent with Detroit. They just had an owner and GM who were willing to pay the price to do it. As Jon Bones points out...pocketing the cash ain't gonna make the Twins any better. And as Reusse correctly pointed out, when you compare the other ownership/GM's in this town, it just appears the Twins don't care. Perception is reality. Another point to consider. Terry Ryan is counting on 2015 as the year the Twins should be able to compete. What if Buxton and Sano are on the team and they play reasonably well but the team still struggles because many holes weren't fixed before they came up? Ryan is risking the fan base by signing the Corriea's, Pelfrey's etc...of the world. I think Twins fans should expect some bold moves this winter or the Twins risk crowds of about 15,000 per game. Someone should publish what the average attendance was in the month of September this year.

Badsmerf
10-12-2013, 10:37 AM
Problem with comparing to Detroit is they have the best pitcher in the game in Verlander that came up through the system. Makes it pretty easy to fill holes when you have a guy like that. Same could have been said with Santana back in the day, except the Twins (Terry Ryan) didn't put any effort to put them over the top.

I think instead of "Farm" the category should be "Draft." The Rays draft pitchers incredibly well, kinda scary good really. David Price, Matt Moore (8th round- out of HS), Alex Cobb (4th round- out of HS), Jeremy Hellickson (4th round- out of HS), David Price (1st round, college). Chris Archer was acquired via trade by the Rays. He should not be listed as "Farm". Still, pretty impressive most of the Rays rotation is made-up of HS draftees that were found in the middle rounds.

twinsfan34
10-12-2013, 03:33 PM
Problem with comparing to Detroit is they have the best pitcher in the game in Verlander that came up through the system. Makes it pretty easy to fill holes when you have a guy like that. Same could have been said with Santana back in the day, except the Twins (Terry Ryan) didn't put any effort to put them over the top.

I think instead of "Farm" the category should be "Draft." The Rays draft pitchers incredibly well, kinda scary good really. David Price, Matt Moore (8th round- out of HS), Alex Cobb (4th round- out of HS), Jeremy Hellickson (4th round- out of HS), David Price (1st round, college). Chris Archer was acquired via trade by the Rays. He should not be listed as "Farm". Still, pretty impressive most of the Rays rotation is made-up of HS draftees that were found in the middle rounds.

Yes, you are 100% correct, Chris Archer was acquired via trade. But he was brought to the Rays through the Farm system versus he was traded for and brought immediate value to the ML club. So yes, you are right, but for my classification, I was saying 'farm' as he didn't provide any value to the Rays as a AA player nor to their ability to win that particular season he was acquired much like a Free Agent or a Trade (typically) will. He was acquired in 2011 and spent a little over 2 years in the minors before becoming a starter a little while into the 2013 season.

I should have been more clear.

Kwak
10-12-2013, 04:19 PM
Those teams that "fail" at drafting and developing pitchers can, and for much less than the price of a FA pitcher, lure (promotions and pay raises) personnel from those teams that do succeed at drafting/developing pitchers.

Jδrpen Fδviken
10-12-2013, 04:50 PM
FA is a funny thing and perhaps needs to be put in context for the Twins. Traditionally the Twins get washout pitchers for a year or two and rarely get good dividends.

Major Leauge Ready
10-13-2013, 09:52 AM
Farm System 24
Trade 9
Free Agents 7

These numbers reflect that Chris Archer and AJ Burnett were trades. I could be wrong but I thought the Yankees wanted to get rid of him bad enough to pay $20M of his remaining $33M contract to trade him.

It gets more interesting when you look a little deeper into the 7 FAs. Of the 7, four of them had a combined salary of $16M annually and were on short term contracts. Ryu & Capuano at $6Meach, Colon at $3M and Liriano at $1M. These guys are often referred to here as dumpster diving.

Grienke and Lackey were the only two that fit the “high profile” description. The other, Ryan Dempster at 2/26.5 was somewhere in between but he was the worst performer of all 40 of the SPs on play-off teams. So, out of 40 team, two SPs (5%) were high profile FAs.

Only 4 of the 8 teams had free agents at all. Two of those teams had one FA each with a grand total of $4M guaranteed to them combined. Two teams (LAD and BOS) had five between them. Of course, they are the #2, and #3 teams in revenue.

So, I would agree with those that the best organizations draft well. I could not disagree more with those who conclude the Twins should be all the more aggressive in FA because they don’t draft well. That is the poorest solution possible. We need to fix the root problem, not pursue the avenue proven to the most ineffective and inefficient. Kwak hit in on the head. What better investment could we possibly make than to improve the staff, strategy, and processes associated with developing SPs?

mike wants wins
10-14-2013, 09:48 AM
why does signing a FA preclude the team from fixing it's minor league issues? How are the two correlated at all?

USAFChief
10-14-2013, 10:20 AM
Anibal Sanchez should be in the free agent category, not trade. He was a free agent last winter.

Maholm, while acquired via trade, was signed by Chicago as a free agent.

Both Wainwright and Hudson, while not technically free agents, each have signed two extensions that prevented free agency, which is sort of the same thing.

IMO you have misrepresented free agency in your study.

Twins Twerp
10-14-2013, 12:18 PM
Worley yes through trade. Deduno via minor league free agent.

twinsfan34
10-14-2013, 04:59 PM
why does signing a FA preclude the team from fixing it's minor league issues? How are the two correlated at all?

It doesn't necessarily preclude them from doing so. It can have a negative affect on your minor leagues.

Example, after the 2011 season the Angels signed Albert Pujols. The Cardinals got their 1st RD pick (Michael Wacha (http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/w/wachami01.shtml)) as compensation for signing away Pujols. The Cardinals also got another 1st RD as a supplemental selection (Stephen Piscotty (http://www.baseball-reference.com/minors/player.cgi?id=piscot001ste)). Two years later, Wacha almost throws a no-hitter in the post-season and Piscotty is in AA already with a great BB/SO and contact ratio. The Angels also signed CJ Wilson so they lost their 2nd RD choice in that draft as well.




The Twins had a tremendous draft in 2012, but, they also lost their 2nd RD pick (#2 overall in that round) for signing Josh Willingham. Willingham had a great year in 2012. What will that pick ultimately end up being or what value will Josh Willingham's 2012 (and whatever he does this year, did nothing in 2013) and any other years weigh against that signing. Who knows...

So it's not 'free' to sign any free agent. For top free agents, you'll also lose your draft pick in the 1st RD for the upcoming draft.

twinsfan34
10-14-2013, 05:12 PM
Anibal Sanchez should be in the free agent category, not trade. He was a free agent last winter.

Maholm, while acquired via trade, was signed by Chicago as a free agent.

Both Wainwright and Hudson, while not technically free agents, each have signed two extensions that prevented free agency, which is sort of the same thing.

IMO you have misrepresented free agency in your study.

I can see your view point on Anibal Sanchez. As the reason he's with the Tigers in 2013 is because he was a free agent and signed a contract. However, if that's the line of thinking, eventually 100% of players will be free agent acquisitions - because they have to sign a non-rookie contract at some point. There's a few caveats, but any player generally needs at least 6 years of MLB service time to be an unrestricted FA. So any player with 6 years or more on a team is a free agent.


Maholm is with the Braves - whether or not he signed with Chicago isn't really relevant to how he's playing with the Braves. How would you then deal with the fact he came to the majors by the Draft. That is, he was drafted by the Pirates in 2003, so would you not then have to consider him a Draft Pick? As he was a draft pick before he was a free agent. The other factor, is I'd struggle with how MLB classifies Maholm. At no point could Maholm have decided (free agency) not to be a Brave after being traded from the Cubs.

Well - Adam Wainwright would have been a Cardinal in 2013 regardless - as his contract extension doesn't come into play until 2014.

But, lets play out the scenario I think you're referring to. That is, assuming the Cardinals make the playoffs in 2014. I still would find it hard to classify Adam Wainwright as a Free Agent - as at no point in his career could the Twins (or any other ballclub) have signed him. He "avoided" free agency as claims, in the MLB terms, he has to file for free agency and be granted it. He would at no point been able to classify or call himself a free agent by Major League Baseball. Even so, I just can't classify a guy who's never been a free agent, as a free agent.

The Wise One
10-14-2013, 09:01 PM
It doesn't necessarily preclude them from doing so. It can have a negative affect on your minor leagues.

Example, after the 2011 season the Angels signed Albert Pujols. The Cardinals got their 1st RD pick (Michael Wacha (http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/w/wachami01.shtml)) as compensation for signing away Pujols. The Cardinals also got another 1st RD as a supplemental selection (Stephen Piscotty (http://www.baseball-reference.com/minors/player.cgi?id=piscot001ste)). Two years later, Wacha almost throws a no-hitter in the post-season and Piscotty is in AA already with a great BB/SO and contact ratio. The Angels also signed CJ Wilson so they lost their 2nd RD choice in that draft as well.




The Twins had a tremendous draft in 2012, but, they also lost their 2nd RD pick (#2 overall in that round) for signing Josh Willingham. Willingham had a great year in 2012. What will that pick ultimately end up being or what value will Josh Willingham's 2012 (and whatever he does this year, did nothing in 2013) and any other years weigh against that signing. Who knows...

So it's not 'free' to sign any free agent. For top free agents, you'll also lose your draft pick in the 1st RD for the upcoming draft.

The compensation rules have changed. I doubt the Twins will be signing a 14/mil player anyway.

twinsfan34
10-15-2013, 01:18 AM
The compensation rules have changed. I doubt the Twins will be signing a 14/mil player anyway.

Yep. Instead of losing your 1st RD draft pick to the other team. You just forfeit it altogether. Exceptions Teams that were protected in the top 15 are now only the top 10 protected. Free Agents are also no longer tiered. Has to do with if they've been offered average salary of top 125 player money (early indications of $14.1M for 2014).

So the Twins for example, 5th worst team (top 10 protected), would instead lose a 2nd RD pick for say, signing Robbie Cano (sure to be offered compensatory money).

And yea, you're probably right. They probably won't go after a $14M+a yr player, primarily for the salary implications, but also because this administration would likely not prefer to lose their 2nd RD draft pick in this upcoming draft.

Major Leauge Ready
10-15-2013, 06:35 AM
why does signing a FA preclude the team from fixing it's minor league issues? How are the two correlated at all?

Draft pick compensation was a bigger part of it prior to the CBA. Why do you think Tampa Bay and Oakland do not sign FA pitchers? For that matter, does it make sense to you why they look to deal their best players when they are approaching free agency? I don't mean this to be a precursor to my answer, I am wondering why you think they manage their roster in this way.

diehardtwinsfan
10-15-2013, 11:07 AM
I don't have a problem spending money, but minus Tanaka, Santana (who has an option and won't be leaving KC), and Garza (who I doubt will come here), I don't see anyone worth spending that type of cash on... Perhaps Hughes, but not at the kind of money I see tossed around here.

Quite honestly, they could turn into another one of our typical Twins pitchers except with a 4 year contract that you cannot unload.

mike wants wins
10-15-2013, 11:15 AM
TB doesn't sign FAs because they have no money to do so......do you really think they would never sign any FAs if they had $50-100MM more in revenue? They also don't sign FA pitchers because they are actually good at drafting and developing pitchers, so they don't need to sign FA pitchers.

Oakland, actually, did sign an expensive Cuban recently. The also do not sign expensive pitchers because they are are good at developing them, and they have a ballpark that allows them to sign less expensive pitchers and still be successful with them. Also, they have no revenue. Again, if they had another $100MM in revenue, you don't think they'd ever sign a FA?

I think many of you have cause and effect and root cause really wrong.

nicksaviking
10-15-2013, 11:35 AM
The Twins had a tremendous draft in 2012, but, they also lost their 2nd RD pick (#2 overall in that round) for signing Josh Willingham. Willingham had a great year in 2012. What will that pick ultimately end up being or what value will Josh Willingham's 2012 (and whatever he does this year, did nothing in 2013) and any other years weigh against that signing. Who knows...

So it's not 'free' to sign any free agent. For top free agents, you'll also lose your draft pick in the 1st RD for the upcoming draft.

The Twins didn't lose a 2nd round pick. They used it on Mason Melotakis. It was a different system back then, clubs didn't lose picks unless the free agent was designated in the A class. In Willingham's case, the league simply generated a free draft pick out of thin air to help the A's, the Twins lost nothing.

Also, the Twins will not be losing their 1st pick. Any pick inside the top 10 is protected, they would simply lose their 2nd round pick, which I wouldn't like but would be forgivable if they got a high class free agent however unlikely that would be.

mike wants wins
10-15-2013, 11:43 AM
So basically they are unlikely to lose a draft pick, right? You can sign most free agents and not lose a pick.

Also, the point was....should they fix the coaching and development processes, and again, I don't see how signing good free agents effects that.....

twinsfan34
10-15-2013, 02:48 PM
Draft pick compensation was a bigger part of it prior to the CBA. Why do you think Tampa Bay and Oakland do not sign FA pitchers? For that matter, does it make sense to you why they look to deal their best players when they are approaching free agency? I don't mean this to be a precursor to my answer, I am wondering why you think they manage their roster in this way.


Great observation. One would think this would open up teams from being more aggressive in that 'middle tier' free agency area (under the compensatory loss of pick price range).

This is a great Question:


For that matter, does it make sense to you why they look to deal their best players when they are approaching free agency?

And under the new CBA, will they still continue to do it?

It appears the Devil Rays are looking to deal David Price or at least highly entertaining the idea.

Major Leauge Ready
10-15-2013, 03:21 PM
TB doesn't sign FAs because they have no money to do so......do you really think they would never sign any FAs if they had $50-100MM more in revenue? They also don't sign FA pitchers because they are actually good at drafting and developing pitchers, so they don't need to sign FA pitchers.

Oakland, actually, did sign an expensive Cuban recently. The also do not sign expensive pitchers because they are are good at developing them, and they have a ballpark that allows them to sign less expensive pitchers and still be successful with them. Also, they have no revenue. Again, if they had another $100MM in revenue, you don't think they'd ever sign a FA?

I think many of you have cause and effect and root cause really wrong.


I only have two years or revenue numbers and I am not going to take time to look beyond 2011 & 2012. Had Tampa bay had an additional $100M in revenue they would have ranked 3rd in 2011 and 5th in 2012. At any rate, being affordable is a relative term. Technically, any team could afford to sign any player depending on your definition of afford.

The Ray’s and the A’s don’t sign them because their production/dollar of salary is poor. Elite free agents have a very poor production/salary ratio. If you are the NYY, LAD, or Boston, you can afford between 8-9M/player on the 25 man roster. The next tier (PHI,CHC,SF) you can afford somewhere between 5.5 and 6.5M. The Twins can afford roughly $4M and the Ray’s $3M per player. If you are the Twins and you sign two FAs for $40M/yr and you already have Mauer, assuming a $110M budget, you have 2.14M/player for the remaining 22 roster spots. The economics just don’t work even under the best case scenario that the player produces for the length of the contract.

When I said the Twins should focus on getting as good as the A’s and Ray’s at frafting and developing talent, you asked why developing talent and signing FAs could or should not co-exist. Now you say Oakland and Tampa Bay does not need to sign free agents because they are good at drafting and developing. I am confused. Additionally, one 4 year 36M player does not make for a practice. A Cespedes type signing is a very rare occurrence and a 4/36 for an international player where the contract will encompass the players prime is a very different thing than signing an injury prone Ellsbury to 5-6/110-130M. VERY different. How many examples can you come up with of teams in the bottom half of the league in terms of revenue signing players to the type of deal Ellsbury will receive? I can’t come up with one in the last few years. They all went to top 10 revenue teams.

2nd tier FAs can be acquired on 2-4 years deals and those can make sense for the Twins anytime, especially right now.

mike wants wins
10-15-2013, 03:25 PM
Cespedes is still more than any FA contract the Twins have signed, EVER.

I'm not sure what you are confused on. Nothing about any of this explains how signing free agents prevents you from being good at developing people.

Agreed, having Mauer makes it harder to stay under $110MM and sign other big FAs, that is an issue.

USAFChief
10-15-2013, 04:41 PM
I only have two years or revenue numbers and I am not going to take time to look beyond 2011 & 2012. Had Tampa bay had an additional $100M in revenue they would have ranked 3rd in 2011 and 5th in 2012. At any rate, being affordable is a relative term. Technically, any team could afford to sign any player depending on your definition of afford.

The Ray’s and the A’s don’t sign them because their production/dollar of salary is poor. Elite free agents have a very poor production/salary ratio. If you are the NYY, LAD, or Boston, you can afford between 8-9M/player on the 25 man roster. The next tier (PHI,CHC,SF) you can afford somewhere between 5.5 and 6.5M. The Twins can afford roughly $4M and the Ray’s $3M per player. If you are the Twins and you sign two FAs for $40M/yr and you already have Mauer, assuming a $110M budget, you have 2.14M/player for the remaining 22 roster spots. The economics just don’t work even under the best case scenario that the player produces for the length of the contract.

When I said the Twins should focus on getting as good as the A’s and Ray’s at frafting and developing talent, you asked why developing talent and signing FAs could or should not co-exist. Now you say Oakland and Tampa Bay does not need to sign free agents because they are good at drafting and developing. I am confused. Additionally, one 4 year 36M player does not make for a practice. A Cespedes type signing is a very rare occurrence and a 4/36 for an international player where the contract will encompass the players prime is a very different thing than signing an injury prone Ellsbury to 5-6/110-130M. VERY different. How many examples can you come up with of teams in the bottom half of the league in terms of revenue signing players to the type of deal Ellsbury will receive? I can’t come up with one in the last few years. They all went to top 10 revenue teams.

2nd tier FAs can be acquired on 2-4 years deals and those can make sense for the Twins anytime, especially right now.Is there an answer to the question somewhere in there? Why would signing free agents prevent drafting and developing your own?

Alex
10-15-2013, 05:28 PM
Is there an answer to the question somewhere in there? Why would signing free agents prevent drafting and developing your own?

The prevailing argument on this site (from those that argue against free agents) and from "the man" himself is that free agents are "short cuts" and we don't need them. We accept our suffering and the suffering of the fans as necessary. Signing free agents would be counter to and might actually mitigate said suffering.

Alex
10-15-2013, 05:31 PM
Great observation. One would think this would open up teams from being more aggressive in that 'middle tier' free agency area (under the compensatory loss of pick price range).

This is a great Question:



And under the new CBA, will they still continue to do it?

It appears the Devil Rays are looking to deal David Price or at least highly entertaining the idea.

Just like they dealt Shields, I think they'll deal them as long as they can get more for value for them than they would get from a qualifying offer. For Shields, they got a near major league ready player with all six years of team control, much better than a supplemental pick and the risk involved in developing the player.

Kwak
10-15-2013, 05:36 PM
"Fixing the draft problem"? Replace those responsible--presumably from teams that excel in that skill.

Major Leauge Ready
10-15-2013, 07:51 PM
Is there an answer to the question somewhere in there? Why would signing free agents prevent drafting and developing your own?


If that is what you get out of this post, any further discussion is pointless.

Let's be reasonable. I don't see anyone suggesting the Twins should not sign free agents. The general theme is not sign 5+ year guys. I have stated on a few occasions they should be very agressive on the best quality FAs that can be signed to 2-3 year deals and even 4 years of the situation is right. I asked before and I will ask again, give me examples of teams in the bottom half in terms of revenue that have signed top free agents that were not resigns. Let's make this reasonable given there have been $150M-250M contracts in the past few years. Lets say anything over $60M.