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2020 draft class

MLB Draft Today, 10:42 AM
Obviously, it's never too early to get excited about the upcoming draft. Pipeline has a top 100 up already. http://m.mlb.com/pro...020/?l...
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Josh Donaldson’s swing.... again

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 10:37 AM
Ok, I know, tired..... but dang that’s pretty! I can’t wait to see that with a TC on the cap. https://m.youtube.co...eature=youtu.be
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Baby Blues Are Back!

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 10:23 AM
I'm so happy!       Here is the press release:     TWINS RETURN TO HISTORY, UNVEIL BABY BLUE ALTERNATE UNIFORM...
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Adrift in a sea of advanced stats

Other Baseball Today, 11:32 AM
Hey all,    I see a lot of advanced stats flashed at Twins Daily.    I was a wondering which among them you all saw a...
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How the internal (back-end) pitching options stack up for...

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 11:32 AM
There seems to be a general consensus that the Twins are in desperate need of at least one additional starting pitcher for their rotation...
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Homer Bailey Could be a Solid Upgrade to the Twins Rotation

When the Twins announced the signing of Homer Bailey, I was very frustrated and confused. I wanted Wheeler or Ryu and instead saw Homer Bailey, so can you blame me? After my frustration died down I looked a bit more into Bailey and maybe, just maybe, he could be a solid starter.
Image courtesy of © Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
Remember in 2013 when Homer Bailey had a 3.49 ERA, 3.31 FIP, and a 4.1 fWAR that led to the Reds extending him for six years/$105 million? He didn’t exactly live up to that contract, accumulating only 2.8 fWAR until 2019 when he started to get back on track with a 2.9 fWAR. My favorite year was probably 2018 when he went 1-14 with a 6.09 ERA. Anyway, enough with the awful years and time to focus on why I think Bailey could be effective this season.

Bailey was likely signed by the Twins because of how he performed after being dealt to Oakland last season. He pitched at least five innings in 11 of his 13 starts after being dealt and also allowed three or fewer earned runs in all 11 of those games. He was very consistent with a 3.65 FIP in Oakland despite one awful start against the (BANG) Houston Astros. Oh sorry, that was me slamming a baseball bat against a garbage can.

A lot of the success Bailey saw in 2019 was because of his pitch selection. He increased how often he throws his splitter by 10% to get it to 26.4% in 2019 and it was one of the best pitches in baseball. Batters were hitting just .182 with a .302 SLG and .214 wOBA against him on the splitter. Fangraphs rated his splitter as the second best last year, just a tick behind Yu Darvish. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him reach 30% with the splitter in 2020 with the Twins.

The Twins definitely signed Bailey with hopes of him keeping the same level of play he displayed in Oakland. If the Twins can unlock that for a full season then they will suddenly have a great number four starter behind Berrios, Odorizzi, and Pineda with Rich Hill waiting to return. If everything breaks right (that’s a big if), then the Twins could have a really solid rotation. Of course that still doesn’t make up for the Twins failing to land an impact arm on the same level as Berrios or Odorizzi, but we’re making do with what we have right now.

One Twins Daily writer who I know, Matthew Braun, my partner on the Leading Off Podcast, is very high on Baily. Here is a video he posted on his Twitter account of Homer Bailey throwing a splitter:


I’m interested to see what the fans think of signing Homer Bailey. Do you like the signing? Maybe it’s fine as long as the Twins go trade for someone as good or better than Odorizzi. Personally I don’t mind the signing as much as I instinctively did when I first heard the news, but it’s definitely underwhelming. Comment with your thoughts.

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36 Comments

We needed more than "maybe, just maybe" for starting pitching his off season and did not get it.

 

You can spin me in circles and the truth remains the same

    • Hosken Bombo Disco and Dome Dogg like this

 

Having Bailey signed for a year beats having Gibby signed for three.

Disagree. Gibby's colitis will be just fine on immunosuppression. And he is more talented than Bailey..and 10mil per year is pretty cheap for potentially a #3 SP

    • mikelink45 and dex8425 like this

 

MLBTR had Pineda ranked among their 20 top free agents.

He was not in the top ten

    • jud6312 likes this
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Patrick Wozniak
Jan 12 2020 07:41 PM

Once Wes Johnson gets Bailey to throw his splitter 100% of the time he's going to be truly unstoppable! :) I'm also probably more optimistic than I should be based on his success towards the end of 2019 and part of that is undoubtedly due to the fact that I haven't actually watched Bailey pitch through his struggles. But that splitter does look really good in the clip and the fact that changing his arsenal led to improvement gives me some hope.

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howieramone2
Jan 12 2020 07:43 PM
Nor was he in the top five. What's your point?
    • DannySD likes this

The problem I have is that Homer Bailey's best is about a 3.50 ERA (that is the ceiling).That means he is not all that much better than Gibson.What is the floor?If it is a 6.10 ERA, we probably can cobble something together with what we have to match that.If he can eat some innings until Pineda gets back and not be terrible, maybe this is a deal that is worth it.The problem is that this FO has caught lightning in a bottle a few times already.Eventually, your luck is going to run out and you need to have the talent to win.

 

Nor was he in the top five. What's your point?

 

Nor was he in the top five. What's your point?

There is a point where the fact a person is a FA does not matter.There are only so many that are difference makers. 

My hope is that Homer can eat innings and be effective enough to help this team make the playoffs again.

My other hope is that a trade or an internal candidate brings a playoff caliber starting pitching because I don't like the idea of Homer Bailey being a Twins playoff starter.

    • wabene likes this

 

*If* Pineda and Hill come back. Pineda has had 8ish good starts in the past 3 years. Absolute best case scenario is to get 80 innings out of Hill. And I'd probably take the under on that. As it has been with seemingly every single move this FO makes, I don't hate the Homer Bailey signing. Just not as the only addition to the rotation. This starting staff is one Jose Berrios elbow injury from being one of the worst in baseball.

I don't think the staff is nearly that bad, but even with a healthy Berrios, as things stand now, we won't be able to beat any other team in the post-season.

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Harrison Greeley III
Jan 13 2020 10:17 AM

If he loses the feel for the splitter, oh well. $7 million wasted and a handful of bad starts. But if he still has the splitter he's probably a 4 WAR pitcher this year and this turns out to be a jackpot signing. 

 

I understand the lack of a huge signing or trade is frustrating, but this isn't the place to direct that frustration. This was a good, well-calculated signing. 

    • LA VIkes Fan and cmoss84 like this

Well, I would have preferred to have Gibson back: Gibson is younger, has been healthier (despite last year's obvious struggles), and has been a bit better overall. Even when Gibby has been struggling he's been good at chewing up innings. About the only sure thing Bailey has going on is that he's cheaper.

 

Taking Gibson out of the equation, and Bailey is...fine? As a move to keep the floor of the rotation higher and have some insurance against someone like Thorpe not being ready or uncertainty about if/when Rich Hill is back, or how much time Pineda needs to get into game shape...sure. We've got a good pitching coach, his splitter is good, so it's a Martin Perez kind of move (which worked for a couple of month before basically falling apart). If that's the expectation, well ok.

 

I think I would have preferred Gausman and I definitely would have rather brought back Gibson, but with both of those guys off the table I like this as an insurance play. but to me, that really all it is: an insurance play for depth, against injury, against uncertainty, against youth, etc.

 

If he pitches like it's 2014 or the second half of 2019, it's a win. But expecting 2012 or even 2013 Bailey is unrealistic.

 

(Now, i will say that if you give 20+ starts to a guy whose ERA+ is 99 and he's your 5th guy? That actually ends up being pretty good for you for the regular season. I've said it many times and I'll keep saying it: one of the easiest paths to competitiveness is giving as few innings to terrible players as possible. Raising the floor is good, and the twins did a lot of that last year. Bailey might be a guy who keeps the floor fairly high. I expect no more from him, I'm afraid.