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Potential Twins Bullpen Target: Brad Hand, LHP, Indians

Taylor Rogers is currently the only left-handed pitcher in the Minnesota Twins bullpen. With the coaching staff embracing analytics and matchups, the team would love to add another southpaw to come out of the pen in any given situation. They could add that lefty arm while also taking something away from division rival Cleveland Indians if they make a play for reliever Brad Hand.
Image courtesy of © David Dermer-USA TODAY Sports
Brad Hand, LHP, 29-years-old

Cleveland Indians (38-34, 2nd in AL Central)
Under team control through 2020, with a team option in 2021.

2019: 0.88 ERA, 0.75 WHIP, 13.5 K/9, 2.3 BB/9 in 30.2 IP
2018: 2.28 ERA, 1.157 WHIP, 13.3 K/9, 4.2 BB/9 in 27.2 IP

What’s to Like?
Everybody loves left-handed pitching coming out of their bullpen. Brad Hand is not just a left-handed specialist, he’s tough on both right and left-hand batters. Lefties are hitting .115 off him while righties are only hitting slightly better at .154. Hand reminds me of Taylor Rogers, he’s a left-handed reliever who can be brought in whenever you need outs.

Hand is tied the AL lead in saves (20), is the AL leader in FanGraphs’ WAR (1.4) for relievers, is a perfect 20/20 on saves this season, and 2nd in ERA (0.88) for AL relievers.

According to Statcast, Hand has an average spin rate of 2,529 RPMs on his four-seam fastball, which is about the same as former Twin Ryan Pressly, and good for about 12th best in the league. Pressly left Minnesota, increased his spin rate and has been very good for the Houston Astros since. A higher spin rate means hitters will have a harder time hitting a fastball as it will have more “life” to it.

Hand also was born in Minneapolis and drafted out of Chaska High School, so it would be a nice homecoming.

Concerns
The largest concern with landing Hand would be the sheer cost to obtain him. With Hand being on a Cleveland Indians team that is not in rebuild mode, the Twins would have to give up more than one top prospect. Add to that fact that Hand is still under team control through 2021, and you have one of the most expensive targets the Twins could consider.

Another concern with Hand would be the number of innings he’s pitched over the last four seasons. Since 2016 Hand has logged 271.1 innings pitched. While he’s not old by any means, there is always concern that a reliever will fall apart with too much use. With Hand being a starter early in his career though, this might not be much of an issue.

See Also
Oliver Perez, LHP Cleveland
Robert Stephenson, RHP, Reds
John Gant, RHP, Cardinals
Alex Colome, RHP, White Sox
Seth Lugo, RHP, Mets
Greg Holland, RHP, Diamondbacks
Sean Doolittle, LHP, Nationals
Kirby Yates, RHP, Padres
10 Relievers Minnesota Could Target


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20 Comments

This isn't happening. Cleveland is well within wild card contention and it would be foolish to give the Twins, a division rival, Hand with control from 2019-2021. I imagine Cleveland starts to think about trading him in 2020 if they're doing to rebuild or retool, but not now.

    • Hosken Bombo Disco, mickeymental, MN_ExPat and 3 others like this
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Aerodeliria
Jun 19 2019 06:00 PM

 

This isn't happening. Cleveland is well within wild card contention and it would be foolish to give the Twins, a division rival, Hand with control from 2019-2021. I imagine Cleveland starts to think about trading him in 2020 if they're doing to rebuild or retool, but not now.

Sadly, I agree. The cost would be prohibitive to say the least. Something like Graterol, Rooker and Littell, or something along those lines. Cleveland fans wouldn't be happy about trading him either, especially as the Indians are still in contention for the wild card--although, I doubt they can stay there with the BoSox starting to play at such a high level.

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jorgenswest
Jun 19 2019 06:16 PM
If Cleveland makes him available it could be pay up to get him or bat against him in the playoffs.
The prospect cost doesn't concern me... I don't think Cleveland will ever trade him to a division rival.
    • Twins33, mickeymental, Aerodeliria and 1 other like this

Hand would be my first target.Sometimes you have to surrender prospects.Most prospects are very overvalued because their true upside is unknown.That is something the Twins have missed out on for the past 15 years, packaging a group of minor league players and getting a known and valuable player.  

 

 

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Aerodeliria
Jun 19 2019 10:55 PM

 

If Cleveland makes him available it could be pay up to get him or bat against him in the playoffs.

That's true, but I doubt they'd let him go to the Twins.

    • Nine of twelve and In My La-Z-boy like this

Don't look now but Cleveland is five games over five hundred and half a game out of the wild card. Cleveland has cut the Twins lead to nine.They also will have some key players coming back.

 

We should have gotten Brad Hand when he was playing for SD.If we get him now, we pay thru the nose.:)

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diehardtwinsfan
Jun 20 2019 05:53 AM

this is another one that if he's available, you get him. 

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lukeduke1980
Jun 20 2019 07:24 AM

I think Cleveland makes an effort to improve and win every year they still have Lindor.

I don't see Cleveland selling at the deadline.They have stayed within a game of the wild card so far and this is without vintage Kluber, Carrasco, and Clevinger. With Clevenger back and Kluber throwing again they could easily make a run at the wild card or more.

 

Interesting side note, they had a 39-33 record this time last year compared to 39-34 now.

 

Plus look at their schedule leading up to the deadline.

 

Detroit - 7 games

Kansas City - 13 games!!!

Baltimore - 3 games

Toronto - 3 games

Cincinnati - 2 games

Minnesota - 3 games

Houston - 2 games

Texas - 1 game

 

26 games versus really bad teams and just 5 against good teams.

    • BattleYourTailOff likes this

Teammate of mine playing town ball was a year ahead of Hand at Chaska and played baseball at the University of North Dakota.

 

He reminisced about how he set the high school home run record his senior season, only for Hand to break it the next. Would be cool for him to be on the Twins, but this is the least likely of any of the trade possibilities out there.

    • USAFChief and Nine of twelve like this

There is a 0% chance the Indians will give up Hand until next year midseason at the earliest, and probably not even then. This would be as daft as if the Twins had given up Joe Nathan after 2007.

 

What was the methodology TwinsDaily used for picking the candidates for these threads?

    • Nine of twelve likes this
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jorgenswest
Jun 20 2019 12:19 PM
Morosi and Olney have both reported the the Indians would listen to offers on Bauer, Hand and Santana if they didn’t make up ground on the Twins.
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Turndownforwatt
Jun 20 2019 01:27 PM
What about a bullpen with rodgers, Hand, Giles. That would an ideal trade deadline

I literally asked this same question maybe four years ago (the team was the Marlins): if we are to trade with Cleveland, why not trade for Nick Wittgren?

I can't imagine trading with Cleveland until the gap is insurmountable, but wouldn't it be something if the guy I clamored for in the 2012 draft became a Twin finally? He is having his best year with 30 K and 4 BB in 27.1 IP, with a 2.37 FIP. He has actually gotten better all four years in the majors.

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BattleYourTailOff
Jun 23 2019 09:39 AM
Indians might be within a few games of us by the ASG with the ease of their schedule and the way we have played lately. I doubt they would trade with us
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Carole Keller
Jun 23 2019 09:47 AM

Indians might be within a few games of us by the ASG with the ease of their schedule and the way we have played lately. I doubt they would trade with us


Right. I don’t see him as a potential trade target, more like a pipe dream trade target. He’d be nice to get, but I don’t think it’s an attainable or realistic target.
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Nine of twelve
Jun 23 2019 09:50 AM

I'll echo what has been said several times. As of this moment Cleveland is the second AL wild card team. It's highly unlikely they would let Hand go.

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drivlikejehu
Jun 23 2019 11:43 AM

The only reason this is like a 0.001% chance instead of 0.000% chance is the relationship between Falvey and the Indians. But Cleveland would have to completely disintegrate and fall out of the WC race, and have to get low-balled by everyone else, and the Twins would have to miss out on other targets, etc. Not really worth thinking about.


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