Jump to content

Providing independent coverage of the Minnesota Twins.
Subscribe to Twins Daily Email

The Forums

Helfand: “early June start appears out of picture”

Minnesota Twins Talk Yesterday, 11:37 PM
https://www.twinciti...florida-orders/
Full topic ›

Good Cuts.

Minnesota Twins Talk Yesterday, 11:15 PM
Mark Salas blocked the heck outta that plate.  
Full topic ›

Recent Baseball America Milb Organization Rankings

Twins Minor League Talk Yesterday, 09:33 PM
Since I'm not giving everything away, assuming it's OK to just mention the Twins here. BA ranks the Twins 8th going in to the 2020 season...
Full topic ›

Athletic article on the 2019 postseason baseball

Minnesota Twins Talk Yesterday, 10:11 AM
For those who have a subscription to the Athletic, there is a very interesting article I saw that was a deep dive into the 2019 postseaso...
Full topic ›

Get to know each other

Minnesota Twins Talk Yesterday, 05:48 PM
I did this once about 2-3 years ago, but it was during the offseason and well, it's been a long time ago... Let's get to know each other...
Full topic ›

More Reinforcements?

It was a busy winter for Falvey and Levine, although a lot of their work has flown under the radar. It seems like every major league deal they made was accompanied by three minor league ones that didn’t make headlines. As we see every offseason, nothing comes from most of these deals. There are a few players brought in however that could make surprise contributions in 2020.
Image courtesy of © Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Juan Minaya - Minor League Deal - No Spring Training Invite
If Minaya’s name rings a bell, it’s because he spent parts of the last 4 seasons with the White Sox. In 2018 he put up a 3.25 ERA with a near 28% strikeout rate while averaging over 95 mph on his fastball. He was one of the top arms in the White Sox bullpen 2018 with a 78 ERA- which was similar to Sergio Romo’s 2019 season. 2019 wasn’t quite as kind however, as his velocity dipped by almost 2 mph and the effectiveness of the rest of his pitches went with it. His 3.90 ERA was discredited by a 4.66 FIP, and the White Sox outrighted him midseason.

Minaya could work to recapture some of that velocity at the age of 29 which could raise the floor of the rest of his arsenal. If the Twins are in need of bullpen help as the season goes on, they may have themselves a high octane arm with past major league success waiting in AAA.

Cory Gearrin - Minor League Deal - Spring Training Invite
Gearrin is a reliever who’s made a career out of being reliable. In his eight seasons he’s pitched to a 3.64 ERA and 3.81 FIP and in only one of them has he allowed a HR/9 over 1.0 His career groundball rate of almost 50% indicates a high floor, as suppressing fly balls is a valuable skill to have these days. Gearrin also has one of those sliders that nerds love.



While he may not have Minaya’s raw stuff with an average fastball at 91.4 mph, there’s a lot to like about Gearrin’s reliability. Gearrin is another one of those veterans who’s been around the majors and provides a great fallback option if something doesn’t go according to plan. We may not be seeing him in a closer or setup role, but he’s a name to watch for at some point in 2020.

Blaine Hardy - Minor League Deal - Spring Training Invite
Hardy is another player that’s been in the AL Central for a few years, spending his entire career with the Tigers thus far. He suffered a miserable 2019 with a 4.47 ERA and 5.72 FIP while trying to pitch through a partially torn flexor tendon in his arm. Before 2019 however, Hardy had a 3.60 ERA in 5 seasons. He’s shown up to Major League Camp confident that his arm issues are in the past.

Hardy has a leg up because of his being left handed. He has some interesting reverse platoon splits (4.82 FIP vs L, 3.69 FIP vs R) due to his best pitch being his changeup the last few years similar to Tyler Clippard.


If the Twins can get his breaking ball to be more effective against same handed hitters, Hardy’s repertoire could make him valuable. Pitchers with strong changeups may be at a premium with the new three batter minimum since they’re typically able to match up decently against hitters on both sides of the plate. You have to believe the Twins have something in mind after watching Hardy first hand all these years and giving him a chance to prove he’s healthy in a Twins uniform.

The Twins already had some strong minor league depth going into the winter, but clearly wanted some options with more major league experience at the ready. I think this year above all others we’ve seen the front office bring in low risk options with the chance for a high pay off. On non guaranteed contracts, why not give yourself as much of a buffer of major league talent as possible? With the season just around the corner, are there any sneaky candidates you would expect to come up at some point and make an impact for the 2020 Twins?

MORE FROM TWINS DAILY
— Latest Twins coverage from our writers
— Recent Twins discussion in our forums
— Follow Twins Daily via Twitter, Facebook or email

  • Blake, Oldgoat_MN, mikelink45 and 4 others like this

  • Share:
  • submit to reddit
Subscribe to Twins Daily Email

Subscribe to Twins Daily Email

10 Comments

nothing  wrong with identify guy you think could make adjustments or get healthy and taking some minor league lotto tickets on them.  If you strike out on 9 out of 10 of them and hit gold on 1 its a plus.  Asl long as your showing it in the minors and not rely on them in the majors.  

The Gearrin pickup was worth it just so we could see that clip of him twisting Manny Machado around like a pretzel.

 

I was gonna make a snide remark about Manny's haircut, too, but that was my own haircut circa 1989. I have the same one now, but sort of in reverse...

    • Oldgoat_MN, Sconnie, Cody Pirkl and 1 other like this
Photo
the_brute_squad
Feb 22 2020 07:14 AM

What should be identified with the new relievers (and current) is their effectiveness against rh/lh hitters. With the new three batter rule many of the stats compiled are rh pitcher v rh batter. It would be good to see how they line up against players on the opposite side of the batters box.

    • Cody Pirkl and FritzDahmus like this
Photo
Richard Swerdlick
Feb 22 2020 07:22 AM

To start the season, Rochester should have a heck of a pitching staff, or at least relief corp.

    • Danchat, DocBauer, David HK and 1 other like this
Do any of them have to make the Major League roster by a certain date or be released?
Photo
East Coast Twin
Feb 22 2020 09:48 AM

 

Do any of them have to make the Major League roster by a certain date or be released?

 

According to this post on MLB Trade Rumors, Hardy has an opt out in June.The actual date isn't listed.There's also an opt out provision if he receives an opportunity to pitch abroad.

 

https://www.mlbtrade...aine-hardy.html

 

 

Photo
FritzDahmus
Feb 22 2020 11:28 AM

 

To start the season, Rochester should have a heck of a pitching staff, or at least relief corp.

....and wouldn't it been fun if the AAA team played in CHS field in St. Paul and not in Rochester, New York!!!

 

Would love to wander down to St. Paul to check out what may be heading to the big club. Send the Saints back to Midway [is it still there??].

    • IAMNFan likes this

I like having these guys in AAA, and seeing if they can figure out how to improve their stuff (for example getting Minaya to bump up his MPH with some of our pitching staff's tricks). And if one of them goes off and dominates AAA, it gives the Twins a nice backup option, because as we usually know, the 7th/8th spot in the pen will usually be a revolving door - hopefully not as much this season, but I wouldn't expect our bullpen to be as injury-free as it was last season.

Nice to have a couple veteran bounceback fliers to call up in addition to the lines of Alcala and others.

 

What should be identified with the new relievers (and current) is their effectiveness against rh/lh hitters. With the new three batter rule many of the stats compiled are rh pitcher v rh batter. It would be good to see how they line up against players on the opposite side of the batters box.

That's why I like Hardy, he matches up well against righties. The main thing to look for is a changeup, that's a pitch that typically brings the reverse splits you see on guys like Tyler Clippard. Juan Minaya actually has similar splits because his main offspeed is a changeup.