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Ex Twins in 2021: Where Are They Now?

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 09:47 AM
One of my favorite annual threads on the site. Let’s stay updated on ex-Twins in the news... This is a start of a list, and feel free to...
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Joe West wins lawsuit against Lo Duca

Other Baseball Today, 09:06 AM
https://www.msn.com/...artan-dhp-feeds   I was a bit surprised he won this but good for him, I guess.
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Twins Moving Up Power Rankings (Week of April 11)

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 08:38 AM
MLB.com published their updated power rankings Sunday. The moved the Twins up from sixth to fourth. The Athletic (subscription required)...
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The 5 Rule Draft

Twins Minor League Talk Today, 08:08 AM
This year's Rule 5 draft we lost Akil Baddo and Tyler Wells. So I thought I'd check to see how they were doing. 1st I checked on Baddo, h...
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New Target field policy...no bags of any kind

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 08:00 AM
Thankfully we went before gates opened and were warned by a friendly security guy in advance that this year there are no bags of any kind...
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Recent Blogs


Buxton or Berríos: Who Is More Important to the Twins’ Long-Term Success?

Bryon Buxton and José Berríos are in similar places in their big-league careers with two years remaining before free agency. So, which player is more important to the Twins’ long-term success?
Image courtesy of © Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports
Buxton and Berríos were part of a young core of players that were tasked with digging the Twins out of their losing ways. Both were considered among baseball’s best prospects, but now Minnesota might be faced with looking into the future and deciding which player is a better fit for the long-term.

Career Value
Many fans have become frustrated with Buxton and what seems to be consistent trips to the injured list. There was so much hype surrounding him from prior to the 2012 Draft through his debut and subsequent big-league career. It would be tough for any player to live up to those expectations, but there have certainly been signs of the five-tool player Buxton was touted to be.

So far in his career, Buxton has been worth 11.7 WAR according to Baseball Reference and 9.0 WAR according to FanGraphs. Almost half of his WAR total came during the 2017 season when he won a Platinum Glove and hit .253/.314/.413 with 36 extra-base hits in 140 games. Last year, he played in 39 games and batted .254/.267/.577 with 13 home runs and three doubles. It’s clear that he can be the team’s most valuable player when he is on the field.

Frustration has also been part of the story for Berríos, but most of this ire has been directed at his inconsistent performance. He’s been a two-time All-Star and much of that is due to some strong first half performances. Throughout his career, he has posted a 3.64 ERA and held batters to a .226/.285/.385 slash line in the first half. In the second half, his ERA rose to 4.84 and batter’s OPS jumped to .756.

According to Baseball Reference, Berríos has been worth a 7.3 WAR, while FanGraphs has him listed at 11.4 WAR. Unlike Buxton, there isn’t a clear best season in his big-league career. Baseball Reference places his 2018 season (3.4 WAR) at the top as he posted a 3.84 ERA with 202 strikeouts in just over 192 innings. FanGraphs ranks his 2019 season (4.3 WAR) as the best when he had a 3.68 ERA with 195 strikeouts in 200 1/3 innings.

Future Value
Buxton and Berríos are both off to tremendous starts to the 2021 campaign but is tasked with looking into the future and figuring out which player will provide the most value in the years to come. Berríos is going to be paid like a top-tier starter either by the Twins or through the free agency process. It’s clear that his representation has been set on that as he has gotten closer to hitting the open market. This likely means he will be earning $100 million or more.

Minnesota’s previous record for a free agent starting pitcher was Ervin Santana who signed for four-years and $55 million back in 2015. Before Santana, the Twins signed Ricky Nolasco to a four-year, $49 million deal and fans are well aware of how that turned out. Berríos would become the highest paid pitcher in Twins’ history and expectations of him evolving into an “ace” level pitcher would only increase.

Buxton’s future value is a little harder to predict, but that also means an extension would be for less money than Berríos. According to Buxton, he feels like he is in the best spot he has been in as a baseball player. His power surge over the last two years is looking more legit and that only helps his potential future earnings. That being said, speed is part of his game and he will lose a step or two as he continues to age.

Minnesota has the option to resign both players and there is nothing stopping the team from making this a reality. However, Berríos and his importance to the rotation seem to be more important to the team’s long-term success.

Who do you think is more important moving forward? Leave a COMMENT and start the discussion.

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32 Comments

No need for the false choice. People saying both are answering correctly
    • Dodecahedron likes this
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Dodecahedron
Apr 07 2021 12:55 PM

I would offer that picking two cornerstone players and deciding which one to keep is a false dichotomy. Losing either one would be felt. It's what the other 24 players do that matters when we are talking about team success. Both of these two know how to play, but we can't clone them. Neither of these two players alone can produce a playoff win.

 

The Twins got what they need at the top (run producers and run stoppers) and at the bottom (versatility). If the team wants to win a playoff game, they have to improve in the middle. This means having a closer in the bullpen, consistency from the starters, and players like Polanco, Kepler on the positional side playing to their potentials and not making mistakes.

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Brock Beauchamp
Apr 07 2021 02:56 PM
Probably Buxton if only because position players are generally more valuable than pitchers. And Buxton has the potential to be one of the best players in baseball and I can’t really say the same about Berrios.

In the real world with real injury considerations, it’s harder to say but I’d lean toward Berrios.
    • D.C Twins likes this

 

My question in response is what it takes right now. Will either or both take a 6/$120 million offer?

I think yes.

I would say possibly, but then you are right, the Twins could likely only choose 1. If I was promised to get one signed, would probably be Berrios because good starting pitching is so hard to get. Also, if Lewis is headed toward CF....

 

I do think they both will need to be blown away at this point. They both strike me as people that like to bet on themselves..... then again... I have met and talked to them exactly...... ZERO times :)

Theoretically, Buxton. Theoretically.

When he’s playing AND hitting, there’s no way a starting pitcher can be that valuable.

 

Having said that, I’m not yet a believer in his ability to play 140 games a season. I’ve remained a skeptic regarding his bat, as well, but I’m seriously rethinking that position.

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Richard Swerdlick
Apr 08 2021 03:30 AM

I do not see the Twins paying Berrios what it would take to keep him. I expect him to be traded sometime after this season. 

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Brock Beauchamp
Apr 08 2021 07:03 AM

I do not see the Twins paying Berrios what it would take to keep him. I expect him to be traded sometime after this season.

There’s something approaching a zero percent chance the Twins trade Berrios. They’re not Tampa.

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