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Mauer/Sano: Double Standard on Strength/Conditioning?

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 11:39 PM
According to the Star Tribune, Miguel Sano's workouts this off-season are being viewed by the Twins' front office, in an effort to more c...
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Article: Rundown: Cruz, Cahill, Soria and Ramos

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 11:33 PM
FanCred's Jon Heyman reported Monday that the Twins were in the mix for Nelson Cruz. New Twins beat writer for MLB.com Do-Hyoung Park con...
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Derek Falvey Interview on 1500 ESPN

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 11:04 PM
Falvey discusses Sano, payroll, etc. http://www.1500espn....an-mackey-judd/
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LEN3 Throws Cold Water on Hot Stove

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 10:59 PM
http://m.startribune...ings/502283381/ Don't get your hopes up. The Twins, according to LEN3, aren't going to do much at the winter meeti...
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Article: Standing Pat as a Strategy

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 11:33 PM
'As we speak cruel time is fleeing. Seize the day, believing as little as possible in the morrow.' – HoraceBy all appearances, this is go...
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Rundown: The Next Eovaldi, Cleveland Trade Rumors and More

Nathan Eovaldi is one of the hottest free agents on the market right now. Jon Morosi of MLB.com reported that the Astros have joined the mix of 10 teams confirmed to have interest in the 28-year-old right-hander. With that much competition, Eovaldi figures to land himself a handsome contract. It’s difficult to see the Twins coming out on top of the bidding war should they join the pursuit, but what they really should be doing is trying to find the next Nathan Eovaldi.
Image courtesy of © Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports
Eovaldi had a solid 2018 season, but his postseason performance for the Red Sox really put him over the top. He missed the entire 2017 season and the two years prior to that pitched to a 4.45 ERA in 279 innings with the Yankees. Sounds a lot like Michael Pineda, right? Fingers crossed.

In trying to come up with a similar buy-low, high-upside option I landed on Eovaldi’s Boston teammate and fellow free agent Drew Pomeranz. From 2014-17, he had a 3.24 ERA in nearly 500 innings. Forearm issues caused him all sorts of problems in 2018, including a dip in velocity. He had a 6.08 ERA for the Red Sox last year and was demoted to the bullpen. So obviously there are some red flags, but MLB Trade Rumors predicted that he’d be available on a one-year, $6 million contract. I’d take that gamble.

I floated that idea out on Twitter, but Darren Wolfson of KSTP was kind enough to let me know the Twins had not made any contact with Pomeranz at this time. Maybe that will change once they address more urgent matters, who knows? Also, for those wondering, Drew is not related to former Twin Cities broadcaster and minor league pitcher Mike Pomeranz.

Doogie also noted on Twitter that the Twins have been in contact with Patrick Corbin’s agent. Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reported that Corbin, the top pitcher on this year’s free agent market, is expecting to receive six-year offers. Corbin has met with the Phillies, Nationals and is expected to meet with the Yankees. Jim Pohlad is notoriously averse to long commitments, and there’s some logic in that stance, so it still seems the Twins would be a long shot to land the lefty.

It seems pretty odd that Cleveland is apparently forced to shed a lot of payroll this offseason, but even more strange is who they’re inclined to move. Bob Nightengale of the USA Today reported that there’s a sense the team is more amenable to send away Trevor Bauer than Corey Kluber or Carlos Carrasco. Not only is Bauer the youngest of that trio, he also had the best 2018 season of that group. Jon Morosi of MLB.com reported today that the Dodgers are in trade talks with Cleveland and its believed one of the members of their rotation would be headed to LA if any deal is agreed upon.

The Twins could certainly use a boost in their rotation, but I doubt Cleveland would be motivated to deal one of their best players to their top division rival. Still, someone like Bauer potentially leaving Cleveland, along with their other pending free agents, will obviously give the Twins better odds of winning the division.

Rob Huff of MLB Trade Rumors projected the Twins to have a $125 million payroll for 2019. That means they'd have $48 million to spend this offseason. Given the comments by ownership and the front office, I would be surprised if they went that high. But again, if Cleveland sheds talent the Twins should absolutely get aggressive.

The Indians are already losing Michael Brantley, Andrew Miller and Cody Allen. The fact that there’s so much speculation that they’re looking to shed payroll means they’re certainly not going to be signing any big free agents.

Michael Clair of Cut 4 predicted that the Twins would win the AL Central next season. One of the things he points to in the team bridging the gap to Cleveland is luck. So many things went poorly for the Twins in 2018 while Cleveland avoided a lot of those unforeseen issues, outside of their bullpen problems. If they traded Bauer and one of Francisco Lindor or Jose Ramirez was forced to miss a significant amount of time, that team would be very ordinary.

The first Twins Hot Stove Show of the offseason was recorded Wednesday night. You can listen back to the full episode here. Derek Falvey and Rocco Baldelli were the guests. There was a lot of talk about culture, leadership and forming partnerships.

A couple members of the 2018 Twins are moving on to other organizations. La Velle E. Neal III of the Star Trib provided details on Jeff Pickler joining the Reds coaching staff and Chris Gimenez becoming the game planning coach for the Dodgers.

Over at Twinkie Town, Hayden looked back at the 10 dumbest things that happened to the Twins in 2018. I laughed, I cried, I realized there was lots of dumb stuff I’d already blocked out of my memory.

A name you can expect to be hearing a lot is Yusei Kikuchi. The Seibu Lions are expected to post the 27-year-old lefty next week. He’s already in the US and was spotted at an Anaheim Ducks game. Here’s some video of Kikuchi on the mound:

I haven’t seen the Twins linked to Kikuchi in any way, but he seems like a player they should definitely have interest in. He has a 2.81 ERA in more than 1,000 innings in the NPB. If you’re interested in learning more, Yankees site River Ave Blues did an excellent job profiling Kikuchi.

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94 Comments

Flyer on Pomeranz? Yes please.
I think whoever invests in Eovaldi long term will get a lemon. He made a heroic effort in the playoffs showing he can start and come out of the bullpen. However, there's no way that kind of usage is sustainable over the course of 162 games. Durability has always been in question with him.
    • Han Joelo and mikelink45 like this
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ashburyjohn
Nov 29 2018 11:58 AM

My guess, without any particular evidence except a recollection that he had some peculiar training methods as a rookie, is that Bauer must wear out his welcome with his team, despite good on-field production.

 

Backup guess: the Indians have looked as his body of work and see a sell-high situation. Maybe I should make this my primary guess, after all. :)

    • glunn, nicksaviking, PseudoSABR and 8 others like this
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nicksaviking
Nov 29 2018 12:22 PM

 

My guess, without any particular evidence except a recollection that he had some peculiar training methods as a rookie, is that Bauer must wear out his welcome with his team, despite good on-field production.

 

Backup guess: the Indians have looked as his body of work and see a sell-high situation. Maybe I should make this my primary guess, after all. :)

 

Both solid guesses, dare I say educated guesses even, and I don't see any reason why both can't be accurate.

 

 

    • ashburyjohn and mickeymental like this
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Tom Froemming
Nov 29 2018 12:25 PM

I've got one more item to pass along. Shortly after this published, Kiley McDaniel of FanGraphs reported that the Mets are motivated to trade away Noah Syndergaard. 

 

Thor has had some injury issues, but he's also managed to top 150 innings in three of his four seasons with the Mets. That also comes with a 2.93 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 9.9 K/9 and 4.94 K:BB ratio. He's under team control via arbitration for the next three seasons and is still only 26-years-old, so I'd have to imagine the asking price is going to be very high.

    • glunn, Vanimal46, Minny505 and 2 others like this

I've got one more item to pass along. Shortly after this published, Kiley McDaniel of FanGraphs reported that the Mets are motivated to trade away Noah Syndergaard.

Thor has had some injury issues, but he's also managed to top 150 innings in three of his four seasons with the Mets. That also comes with a 2.93 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 9.9 K/9 and 4.94 K:BB ratio. He's under team control via arbitration for the next three seasons and is still only 26-years-old, so I'd have to imagine the asking price is going to be very high.


They're trying to shed some salary since they're about to acquire Cano and Diaz from Seattle. No one in the Twins' organization is off the table for 3 years of Thor.
    • Steve Lein, glunn, Mike Sixel and 4 others like this
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nicksaviking
Nov 29 2018 12:48 PM

I didn't much care for Pomeranz when the Red Sox traded for him as I don't trust pitchers suddenly becoming good in San Diego, but I don't mind a flier on him now. Though it would have to be a real minimal deal, I don't like that 2 MPH drop in velocity last year, that doesn't look good.

 

Matt Harvey is still throwing hard, I wonder why he's not missing more bats though. I guess that's kind of like Eovaldi.

 

Nate Karns has had some success, strikes guys out and not long ago was in the Twins new favorite convenience store, Tampa. But I'm pretty turned off by Thoratic Outlet surgery so I don't know that I'd buy a comeback for him.

 

Martin Perez is still pretty young and is coming from Texas, Lavine's old stomping ground. I don't like his profile as it is, but if someone could convince him to stop using that stupid sinker so often maybe he'd finally figure it out like Kyle Gibson did.

 

To be clear, I was just playing the low-risk, unexciting Eovaldi game as described by Tom.

    • glunn, PseudoSABR, TheLeviathan and 2 others like this
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nicksaviking
Nov 29 2018 12:51 PM

 

I've got one more item to pass along. Shortly after this published, Kiley McDaniel of FanGraphs reported that the Mets are motivated to trade away Noah Syndergaard. 

 

Thor has had some injury issues, but he's also managed to top 150 innings in three of his four seasons with the Mets. That also comes with a 2.93 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 9.9 K/9 and 4.94 K:BB ratio. He's under team control via arbitration for the next three seasons and is still only 26-years-old, so I'd have to imagine the asking price is going to be very high.

 

I don't understand what the Mets are trying to accomplish here. Do they just want Diaz? Just re-sign Familia. Are they trying to rebuild or compete? If it's compete, I'd think Syndergaard + Familia or a similar free agent is better than Cano + Diaz both on the field and on the books. 

    • Twins33, TheLeviathan and jkcarew like this
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KirbyDome89
Nov 29 2018 01:09 PM

Regardless of how much payroll Cleveland sheds, the Twins should be in on this season. Here's to hoping we start the year with more than "fingers crossed." 

    • Twins33, beckmt and Vanimal46 like this

I don't understand what the Mets are trying to accomplish here. Do they just want Diaz? Just re-sign Familia. Are they trying to rebuild or compete? If it's compete, I'd think Syndergaard + Familia or a similar free agent is better than Cano + Diaz both on the field and on the books.


I think they are trying to compete. You don’t even talk Cano if considering a rebuild. Syndagaard rumors are probably an attempt at balancing the roster. Position of strength/Position of weakness thing. They will probably only move him if the return brings back MLB ready talent.

Otherwise... yeah it doesn’t make a ton of sense.
    • glunn and Twins33 like this

My issue is that we are looking at the wrong team if we are trying to compete with Cleveland.I know it it the FO old home, but the fact is they were just good enough to get in and get beat and overall they are what the Twins once were, first round punching bags.The Twins need to forget them and go after the teams that will really make a run at the prize, unless we are just ready to be a Minnesota Nice team.  

    • glunn, Mike Sixel, Twins33 and 3 others like this
I’ve always like Eovaldi. Even when his numbers sucked. He had has stuff.

However. The time to get Eovaldi was when his numbers sucked. Right now you are paying for a small window of greatness coming on the heels of a ton of injury time.

I’d rather the Twins look for the next Eovaldi type with stuff but numbers that ain’t so good and that smaller price tag as a result and then take the money you’d spend on Eovaldi today and get a little closer to a sure thing.
    • glunn, nicksaviking, Monkeypaws and 2 others like this

 

My issue is that we are looking at the wrong team if we are trying to compete with Cleveland.I know it it the FO old home, but the fact is they were just good enough to get in and get beat and overall they are what the Twins once were, first round punching bags.The Twins need to forget them and go after the teams that will really make a run at the prize, unless we are just ready to be a Minnesota Nice team.  

Agreed. Although, it could be argued that competing with Cleveland and winning the division is a good step on the path to true competition for the WS. Where I want to see this FO separate itself from the previous ones is to not stop at winning the division a bunch and getting stomped by NY (or whoever) in the first round. Competing with Cleveland (and everyone in the division) is just one step on the climb to championship competition. If they stop on that step like the previous FOs were happy to do it'll be time to ship them out.

    • glunn and Original Whizzinator like this

 

I think they are trying to compete. You don’t even talk Cano if considering a rebuild. Syndagaard rumors are probably an attempt at balancing the roster. Position of strength/Position of weakness thing. They will probably only move him if the return brings back MLB ready talent.

Otherwise... yeah it doesn’t make a ton of sense.

It actually makes a ton of sense. They're the Mets...

    • glunn, Twins33, Tom Froemming and 1 other like this

"Jim Pohlad is notoriously averse to long commitments, and there’s some logic in that stance, so it still seems the Twins would be a long shot to land the lefty."

And well he should be.....for pitchers at least

I have thought Eovaldi would be good pickup because of his age and stuff he can throw but with this many teams involved there is no way the Twins will be in on him. First they don't have money or should spend that amount of money on one player and second is he won't come to noncontending team like the Twins. I agree we need to find another player like Eovaldi but right now not sure who that player would be. I am more convinced now than ever the Twins are not signing any free agent player that is going to be high cost for the coming year. The next question is are they willing to trade prospects for proven or for high quality young player ready to play at the Majors. Here again I thinking were probably year away from that happening because they want to see some progression before they start investing prospects into this team. Basically were bargain shopping and maybe willing to sign international player if that is possible within in budget. The next area for the Twins are they going to sign any of their potential free agents to long term contracts and here again its been awful quiet on that front also. 

The big question is our window of competing is slowing disappearing right now and maybe before this year is over it may be gone. I Think Chicago could be close now to competing this coming year and my gut has feeling that the Tigers might start show they are getting pieces together to challenge in the near future. The clock has been ticking for us but new geniuses are still learning how to drive the bus and may get passed by the above teams.

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Tom Froemming
Nov 29 2018 02:44 PM

 

They're trying to shed some salary since they're about to acquire Cano and Diaz from Seattle. No one in the Twins' organization is off the table for 3 years of Thor.

I wouldn't give up Royce for him.

    • glunn, birdwatcher, Twins33 and 6 others like this

 

Agreed. Although, it could be argued that competing with Cleveland and winning the division is a good step on the path to true competition for the WS. Where I want to see this FO separate itself from the previous ones is to not stop at winning the division a bunch and getting stomped by NY (or whoever) in the first round. Competing with Cleveland (and everyone in the division) is just one step on the climb to championship competition. If they stop on that step like the previous FOs were happy to do it'll be time to ship them out.

I agree with you.My intention was to say that, of course we want to surpass Cleveland, but that is not enough.That is not a goal, it is just what must be done to reach the heights we need.

 

    • glunn likes this

 

I wouldn't give up Royce for him.

And I have a feeling Kiriloff is going to be as good or better than Royce.So I would have two untouchables.

    • glunn, birdwatcher, TKGuy and 5 others like this

 

I wouldn't give up Royce for him.

 

you'd rather have 6 years of an unknown commodity, than 3 of one of the best pitchers on the planet?

 

And, others won't sign SP to long term deals, where, exactly, do people expect to find great pitchers? 

    • darin617, SD Buhr, Vanimal46 and 1 other like this

I wouldn't give up Royce for him.


I would for sure. Before it's determined whether or not he can stick at SS.
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Tom Froemming
Nov 29 2018 04:19 PM

 

you'd rather have 6 years of an unknown commodity, than 3 of one of the best pitchers on the planet?

 

And, others won't sign SP to long term deals, where, exactly, do people expect to find great pitchers? 

Six years of Royce Lewis? Yes. There's still some uncertainty around the next three years of Thor too. There are no guarantees.

 

I would for sure. Before it's determined whether or not he can stick at SS.

I believe Royce is a shortstop, but even if he moves to the outfield you're going to get an awesome defensive outfielder. Not all of his value is tied up in the ability to stick at shortstop. 

 

 

If the Twins were one ace pitcher away from winning a World Series, I'd feel differently about this question. But right now, I believe six years of Royce Lewis gives the Twins a better chance at winning a World Series at some point than three years of Noah Syndergaard.

    • glunn, Han Joelo, birdwatcher and 11 others like this
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nicksaviking
Nov 29 2018 04:19 PM

Well if the Mets are interested Diaz and Cano from the Mariners, Lewis and Kirilloff probably aren't what they're looking for in exchange for Syndergaard anyway. 

 

 

    • glunn, birdwatcher and PseudoSABR like this
Assuming the Mets want to shed payroll and get ML talent, or close to ML talent back, I'm just tossing this out there:

Kepler, Gordon, Romero and 1 of Gonsalves, Thorpe or Graterol. (Graterol is RH and further away, but has an even higher ceiling).

Kepler starts in CF/RF and still has a ton of upside. Gordon could be ready mid year. Romero is ready now for some role. And they get their choice of another good young arm.

 

Six years of Royce Lewis? Yes. There's still some uncertainty around the next three years of Thor too. There are no guarantees.

 

I believe Royce is a shortstop, but even if he moves to the outfield you're going to get an awesome defensive outfielder. Not all of his value is tied up in the ability to stick at shortstop. 

 

 

If the Twins were one ace pitcher away from winning a World Series, I'd feel differently about this question. But right now, I believe six years of Royce Lewis gives the Twins a better chance at winning a World Series at some point than three years of Noah Syndergaard.

how do you plan to get great pitching, if you won't trade top prospects, or sign guys to long term deals?

    • Heistyman, Vanimal46 and KirbyDome89 like this

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