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Schafer!

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 06:51 AM
Schafer has done well, no question. Has he rendered his 80 ABs for the Braves moot? He's arb eligible and almost 28. Maybe coming to the...
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Article: Non-Roster Hopefuls

Twins Minor League Talk Today, 06:33 AM
As Labor Day approaches and fall soon sets in, it's hard to believe that the baseball season is already almost five months complete. Mond...
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Interesting interview with Terry Ryan

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 06:33 AM
This article contains some interesting statements by Terry Ryan, including the following:   Pohlad said last fall that Ryan’s job is...
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Dorsey: Miracle Add 2 100mph Pitchers

Twins Minor League Talk Today, 06:32 AM
David Dorsey covers the Ft. Myers Miracle. Today, he wrote this article about the two flamethrowers that have recently been added to thei...
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Article: Only One Spot to Address for 2015?

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 01:46 AM
At a glance, the title of this article might seem a little outrageous. How could one suggest that a team on track for 90 losses needs so...
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The Store


Braves Signing Upton Hurts Twins' Trade Options

Attached Image: 9225048-large.jpg Minnesota Twins fans finally have a mildly good reason to push the panic button.

It wasn’t that Scott Baker was leaving the team – without an option year, his value the year after Tommy John isn’t particularly meaningful. It certainly isn’t that (gasp) other free agent starting pitchers are signing elsewhere – especially when only a handful have changed teams and there are an inordinate number of good starting pitchers on the market. And MOST OF ALL it isn’t that the Twins have dared to sign minor leaguers, which is business as usual for this time of year.

But if you want to push it, go ahead. Because yesterday, the Atlanta Braves agreed to terms for center fielder BJ Upton. [PRBREAK][/PRBREAK]For Twins fans hoping for long-term upgrades to the Twins starting pitching staff, this is the worst news this offseason.

The Braves have plenty of young (and affordable) pitching like that, and were in the market for 1) a center fielder and 2) right-handed power. What’s more, they had to be affordable, since the Braves are working on a corporate (inflexible) budget. Both Denard Span AND Josh Willingham had been floated in rumors from the Braves media entities, and it wasn’t out of the question that they could be attempting a blockbuster deal for both.

Upton IS both. He’s a centerfielder, who hits right-handed and has hit 51 home runs over the last two years. And they got him for about $14M/year, which is just a couple of million more than Span and Willingham would have cost. Upton was the linchpin of the offseason for the Braves; he was the one player available to fill both needs at a reasonable price without trading away their starting pitching.

The Twins and their fans will need to take solace in the cliché of the other broken-hearted: there are lots of other fish in the sea. There are. The Rays will need to replace Upton, the Phillies are actively courting center fielders and the Reds have been mentioned as a possible landing place for months.

But the Braves represented the big one that got away. They were the single best option this offseason when trading for major-league-ready, affordable, young, top-half-of-the-rotation starting pitching. If the Braves had missed out on Upton, the Twins and Braves would have made stunningly good fits for each other. Without them interested, the Twins didn’t just lose one name from the “demand” side of the equation, they also lost their best trading partner.

But at least Twins fans have found a reason to push the panic button in 3 …. 2 .... 1 ….
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