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Game Thread: Twins vs Tigers, 4/18 @ 12:10pm CT

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 12:15 AM
Since I have too much time on my hands of late, I thought I'd get this game thread started early. Once there's a lineup, it's game thread...
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Article: Questions About Miguel Sanó's Return

Minnesota Twins Talk Yesterday, 10:54 PM
Miguel Sanó is nearing his return to full-time activity. After going through so much since being named an All-Star, I don’t think there’s...
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Article: TOR 7, MIN 4: Rosario Homers Twice as Twins Drop...

Minnesota Twins Talk Yesterday, 10:54 PM
After three encouraging starts to open the season, Michael Pineda was pounded in his fourth start today. He gave up as many runs in the f...
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So....Time to make a call to Kimbrel?

Minnesota Twins Talk Yesterday, 10:34 PM
I know it’s being discussed in the game thread but figured why not give it one of its own. Prety sure there haven’t been any prior thread...
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Article: Twins Minor League Report (4/16): Graterol Shine...

Twins Minor League Talk Yesterday, 10:05 PM
A Triple A doubleheader added an extra game to a full slate of action on Tuesday night, and if not for a hit parade from Cedar Rapids, pi...
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Hello? Rochester... Please Send Help

I think we can all agree that the first guys promoted from Rochester to attempt to help the Twins bullpen early this season did not perform well in their first outings. So, who else is in Rochester? Let’s get to know the rest of the Red Wings bullpen.
Image courtesy of Butch Dill, USA Today
The Twins wanted to call up Zack Littell last weekend but because the season was not yet ten days old, they were unable to. Instead, they put Chase De Jong back on the 40-man roster and Designed Tyler Austin for Assignment. At the time, the Twins needed someone available in the bullpen who could eat some innings after Jake Odorizzi didn’t get out of the first inningFriday night. De Jong was not needed after all in Philadelphia thanks to good starts by Michael Pineda and Jose Berrios. He got his first opportunity on Tuesday night against the Mets. He came in to finish the ninth inning with the Twins leading 14-4. He needed 46 pitches to finish the ninth and gave up four runs and six base runners.

Following the game, he was returned to Rochester since he would be unable to pitch for the Twins for several days. Lefty Andrew Vasquez, the easy choice for 2018 Twins Daily Minor League Relief Pitcher of the Year, was recalled to take De Jong’s spot.

Unlike De Jong, Vasquez was thrown right into a tough situation. With two outs in the fifth inning last night, Jake Odorizzi loaded the bases with a walk to opposing starter Noah Syndergaard. With left-handed hitting Brandon Nimmo due up, Rocco Baldelli called on the left-hander who struck out 108 batters in 69+ innings last year.

Simply put, it did not go well for Vasquez. He couldn’t throw strikes and frankly, wasn’t close. He hit Nimmo (to put one run on the board). Then he walked both Pete Alonso and Robinson Cano to score two more runs. His fastball topped out at 87 mph and he couldn’t command the slider at all.

I will advocate for not giving up on Andrew Vasquez, and I would assume that most of you would look at that outing as a case of nerves in his return to the big leagues. While he had struck out four batters in 1 1/3 innings in his one Red Wings appearance, he also walked two batters and gave up a hit.

I’m not advocating that Vasquez needs to be optioned right away, though it would be understandable. But if he is, or on a higher level, if at any time the Twins need to call back to Rochester looking for some relief help, what options are there? Below you’ll find the current group of Red Wings relievers, any of who could be an option at some point this season.

THE RELIEVERS IN ROCHESTER
(in alphabetical order)

AUSTIN ADAMS
Age - 32
MLB Experience - Parts of three seasons (2014-16) with Cleveland. 53 games, 58 2/3 innings, 6.29 ERA.
2019 Red Wings Stats - 2 Games, 4.0 IP, 1 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 6 K

The Twins signed Adams late last year out of independent ball and he pitched briefly for Chattanooga. This year, is hitting 94-96 for the Red Wings in the early goings. Presumably, Derek Falvey is quite familiar with him due to his years in Cleveland.

TYLER DUFFEY
Age - 28
MLB Experience - Parts of four seasons (2015-18) with the Twins. 111 games (37 starts), 287 innings, 5.46 ERA.
2019 Red Wings Stats - 2 Games, 4.0 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 6 K

Duffey made such a strong impression on Twins fans late in the 2015 season, nearly catapulting a surprising team to the playoffs. He hasn’t been able to duplicate that performance since and was moved to the bullpen a few years ago. He has the curveball and spin rate that teams love.

RYAN EADES
Age - 27
MLB Experience - None
2019 Red Wings Stats - 2 G, 4.1 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 7 K

Eades made a strong impression during an impressive run in big league spring training this year. He showed a big fastball which reached into the mid-90s. He also showed his array of pitches. Before this season, he had just seven games of Triple-A experience.

PRESTON GUILMET
Age - 31
MLB Experience - Parts of five seasons (2013-18) with Tampa Bay, Cleveland, St. Louis, Baltimore, Toronto, Milwaukee. 27 games, 33 innings. 9.27 ERA.
2019 Red Wings Stats - 2 G, 4.1 IP, 3 H, 3 ER, 3 BB, 4 K.

Guilmet has had a long career. He’s pitched for six teams in the big leagues to go with several other organizations in the minor leagues. He’s got enough stuff to keep getting opportunities.

MIKE MORIN
Age - 27
MLB Experience - Parts of five seasons (2014-18) with Angels. 186 games, 174 innings, 4.66 ERA.
2019 Red Wings Stats - 2 G, 3.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 K.

Born in Minnesota, his family soon moved to the Kansas City area, but he’s still got family in the area. It would certainly be a thrill for him to play for the Twins. Morin pitched between 47 and 60 games each year out of the Angels bullpen between 2014 and 2016. He’s been hurt the last two years, but he appears to be fully healthy again. He’s a low-90s guy with a really, really good changeup.

JAKE REED
Age - 26
MLB Experience - None
2019 Red Wings Stats - 2 G, 3.0 IP, 3 H, 3 ER, 0 BB, 5 K

Reed moved up to AA really quickly after being drafted by the Twins in 2014. He’s been up and down ever since, but he was remarkable for the Red Wings after June 1st last year (23 G, 37.2 IP, 1.43 ERA, .167 opponents batting average). Walks always a concern, but Reed gets a lot of movement. His fastball is 95-97, and he’s got a sharp slider too. .

FERNANDO ROMERO
Age - 24
MLB Experience - Debuted with the Twins in 2018. Made 11 starts, 55 2/3 innings. 4.69 ERA.
2019 Red Wings Stats - 2 G, 5.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 6 K

Romero was really good for his first four MLB starts last year and then struggled the rest of the way. It was surprising that the Twins decided so quickly in spring training that he would pitch out of the bullpen. He struggled in spring training and was optioned to the Red Wings. He’s off to a fast start. In his 3 1/3 hitless, no-walk innings on Wednesday, he was getting swings and misses on 97 and 98 mph fastballs.

Currently DJ Baxendale (27) and Zack Weiss (26) are on the Red Wings injured list.


*Note that the 2019 Red Wings Stats are for just two games, so the sample size is definitely small.

THE STARTERS

Chase De Jong returns to the Red Wings starting rotation. The other starters in the Red Wings rotation are 23-year-old RHP Zack Littell, 23-year-old LHP Lewis Thorpe, 24-year-old RHP Kohl Stewart, 25-year-old RHP Sean Poppen and 27-year-old MLB veteran, LHP Justin Nicolino. LHP Stephen Gonsalves is on the IL as well and should be back in early May.

These guys are options if and when a long-reliever might be needed. They could also be summoned to the Twins when a starter is needed, such as in a doubleheader situation.

THE INJURED LIST

As a reminder, right-handers Matt Magill and Addison Reed, along with LHP Gabriel Moya are on the injured list. We haven’t heard updates on them recently. They are also options to join the big league bullpen when they are ready, though a rehab stint would seem very likely for all three as they have not pitched in a long time.

THE FREE AGENTS

I’ll just throw this tweet from Nick Nelson here:



So, do you have a current hierarchy of who the Twins should call up next as they have needs? How about breaking that out between whether they need a long reliever, or a lefty, or a short-term option versus a more long-term guy? Share your thoughts below.

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104 Comments

 

It is going to take a long time before stats normalize after today’s wind blown 15 home run game in Rochester.

Romero’s ERA will not be indicative at all of how he has pitched this year. It will look good for some of the batters though.

Agreed on the need to take the stats with a grain of salt going forward for a while.

 

But, lest anyone think that Romero was anything but really bad in this appearance: he gave up one-third of the home run total, and retired 3 batters. Here was his sequence, starting from entering with 2 outs in the 4th...

 

Caught stealing (to end the 4th), 5th: HR, HR, K (called), wind-blown single, HR, HBP, HBP, K (swinging), WP, ground-out. Even if the HR's should have all stayed in the part, that's not great.

 

 

Photo
jorgenswest
Apr 14 2019 12:55 PM

Agreed on the need to take the stats with a grain of salt going forward for a while.
 
But, lest anyone think that Romero was anything but really bad in this appearance: he gave up one-third of the home run total, and retired 3 batters. Here was his sequence, starting from entering with 2 outs in the 4th...
 
Caught stealing (to end the 4th), 5th: HR, HR, K (called), wind-blown single, HR, HBP, HBP, K (swinging), WP, ground-out. Even if the HR's should have all stayed in the part, that's not great.


How many of those home runs should have been fly ball outs?

 

How many of those home runs should have been fly ball outs?

Get it. But nobody else on the staff gave up a home run for every out they recorded...or even close. Then there were the HBP's/WP's. Wind or no wind...wasn't an outing that screamed "ready to come up any day now".

No, I expect to get 7 or 8 out of my starters in most of my wins. I was using 6 innings to prove the point that you don't need 8 Riveras in your bullpen, but instead need 3 really good arms, 2 guys a notch under them, and then fill in guys. Some of the wins will be like Tuesday when you don't need to use any of your stud arms because you put up 14. There's a certain segment of people on this thread that act like the good bullpens out there are running 8 all stars out there. That's not the case. If May, Rogers, and Parker are legit late inning guys, and especially if Romero settles in to a bullpen role and comes up as well, you're in good shape. My point in all of my posts on this thread is that the starters are putting the bullpen in a position to fail by "forcing" Rocco to use his mop up guys in spots they aren't meant to be in there for. If you don't believe in Rogers, May, and Parker then the bullpen is a major problem. But if you think those guys will come in and shut it down 85%+ of the time you're in a good spot.

Most major league teams look to win series. So you're talking 2 out of 3 or 3 out of 4 games. 3 shut down guys and 1 or 2 guys who can fill in on a less frequent basis is plenty for getting that done. I don't know what some of the people on here want the bullpen to be. $12+ mil for each of 8 shut down guys? I mean be realistic with what major league bullpens look like.

This entire article and thread is Example A in small sample size, 1 bad early season showing non-sense. If you want to complain about pitching complain about the fact that Berrios is the only trustworthy starter we have so far. That's the hole in this team currently, not the bullpen.

we are up to at least three bad early season outings now.

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