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Helfand: “early June start appears out of picture”

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https://www.twinciti...florida-orders/
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Good Cuts.

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Mark Salas blocked the heck outta that plate.  
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Recent Baseball America Milb Organization Rankings

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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...
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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...
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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...
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Three Ways that the 2020 Minnesota Twins are Embodying a Process Over Results Mindset

From implementing a nap room to providing players with extra off-days, the Minnesota Twins under the Falvine and Baldelli regime have shown time and time again how much they value process over results. This spring training, the Twins are already showing that 2020 will feature that same mindset.
Image courtesy of © Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports
Baseball, more than any other sport, is predicated on taking a long-view approach. In baseball, any team can win on any given day and even the best team in baseball loses a third of the time. The season is 162 games and the playoffs prove year after year that any team in the tournament can take home the Commissioner’s Trophy. It’s for those reasons that a “process over results” mindset is so important. Implement the right processes and your team will prove to be successful over such a long season and give your team a chance to win a World Series.

Here are the three ways that the 2020 Minnesota Twins are embodying a process- over-results mindset:

1. Embracing Technology

Last spring, Parker Hageman wrote a piece for Twins Daily about the new technologies that the Minnesota Twins brought to Fort Myers as a way to track performance and develop their players. This year, the Twins are building on that with the implementation of a new technology from NewtForce called force plates.



These force plates are raised, sensor-filled plates/mounds that track the amount of force that pitchers and hitters are exerting onto the plate. These results then get displayed onto accompanying software where players and coaches can look at the data and tweak swings, leg kicks, pitching windups, etc. in order to remain consistent and efficient in their movements. In a piece from Derek Wetmore, Derek Falvey said of this new technology, “There’s new technology in all sports that you are aware generally, and I would say it’s not unlike anything else we’ve looked at. There are [already] different sensors and things you use to measure strength in the weight room, measure swings, measure arm path, measure all kinds of things. … [Force Plates are] another thing that you want to explore and see if it could potentially help you.”

While the Minnesota Twins will never be able to match the Yankees and Dodgers in payroll, by investing in technology and player development, and getting their players to buy into the benefits from these technologies, they are staying ahead of the curve and finding other ways to gain an edge.

2. Embracing Advanced Statistics

Advanced statistics is another area that baseball players have been historically slow to embrace and adopt into their vocabulary. In prior regimes of the Minnesota Twins, advanced statistics were often ignored in favor of “throwing strikes”, “advancing runners” and “working counts”. The new-era Minnesota Twins have turned advanced statistics into a part of their everyday vocabulary and in 2020 are once again embracing the stories that advanced statistics can tell. The newly added Josh Donaldson figures to only further the advanced statistic movement in the Twins’ clubhouse.



By operating in a culture that supports and embraces advanced statistics, the Minnesota Twins are able to implement processes like launch angles and exit velocities that can lead to long term success.

3. Embracing Learning

A few weeks ago I wrote an article for Twins Daily about how the Minnesota Twins are betting on older stars. A big benefit that comes in investing in aging veterans is the knowledge that they are able to provide to younger players. This is something that new Minnesota Twins slugger, Josh Donaldson, has already shown. From the moment he arrived at Hammond Stadium, Josh Donaldson has started working with Twins’ prospects on their swings, approaches, and mechanics.



Josh Donaldson told The Athletic of his teaching session with the young guys, “I wanted
to be able to help some of these younger guys develop and start understanding a little more about who they are and what they want to become — to see those guys develop long after I’m gone.” This is yet another example of the process over results mindset that exists in the Twins locker room. A “results” mindset would be Donaldson knowing he is a talented player and can hit 30 home runs to help the Twins win games. The process mindset, though, shows Donaldson putting in the time to pour into the younger players, so that when they are called upon, they’ll be ready. This mindset sets up the Twins to win in 2020 and sustain success for years to come.

Minnesota Twins beat reporter Phil Miller reported that the Minnesota Twins organization were all given T-shirts that read “E+R = O”. Events plus response equals outcome. The Minnesota Twins won’t be able to control what comes their way this season (slumps, injuries, opponents), but by employing a process-over- results mindset, the Twins will be much better equipped to get through any turmoil that a season brings.

What do you think about the Minnesota Twins process-over-results mindset? How well do you think the Twins are equipped to deal with turmoil that comes their way in 2020? Leave a comment below and start the conversation!

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11 Comments

There were times during the past regime that it seemed like there were a dozen or more folks on TD who would could have done a better job making baseball decisions. With the new group, there are times when we criticize and it makes sense, but I'm not ready to turn the reigns over to any of you now. I like the direction of the franchise.

 

    • Steve Lein, Mike Frasier Law, Danchat and 11 others like this
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Channing1964
Feb 21 2020 02:27 AM
i am slowly coming to realize some of the really smart internal moves they have made. This off season has been quite successful in my opinion. Let us not forget the jury is still out. We all can see the rather rapid improvements. I still think it was a bonehead move to tank the season at the trade deadline in 2018. Thats not to say they would have won it's just that nobody can convince me that you hat was fair to the fans and especially the STH's. I hope they realize what great fans we are and now that they have their "stamp" on the organization, that they never forget that.
    • gil4 and Mike Frasier Law like this
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Channing1964
Feb 21 2020 02:28 AM
oh yeah one more thing. BRING BACK THE HOME PINSTRIPES!!!
    • gil4, DocBauer and Nine of twelve like this

 

oh yeah one more thing. BRING BACK THE HOME PINSTRIPES!!!

Yes, this is the big takeaway from the article!  Hahaha 

I do like the pinstripes, though.

 

Seriously, the whole reason why you bring in the “old dudes” is because they aren’t worried about making the team, firstly, and then you just avoid the guys who want to “get theirs”.  The Twins have done an excellent job of getting the right old guys to help the young guys relax a bit.  Secondly, these guys are helping to bring a swagger to the Twins that I’ve not seen before, and is really exciting.  Gardy’s best teams were filled predominantly with “team first” good guys who generally did their jobs and didn’t make a fuss, but honestly weren’t the most savvy or intelligent....well, because they followed the lead of their manager.  Gardy was a good guy, but would he have brought in new systems and ideas to break guys out of moulds and challenge them to be better than they were?  Of course not.

 

It’s a great time to be a Twins fan....especially given the state of the Wolves, Wild and, arguably, the Vikings.

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twinsfanstreif
Feb 21 2020 05:09 AM

This reminds me of Simon Sinek's Finite vs Infinite mindset. If you haven't heard it I suggest you look up his YouTube videos, it's quite amazing

Some of this isn't really new: people have been talking about not swinging at bad pitches forever, and the idea of crushing the pitch you want is pretty old school too. the difference is we're tracking and quantifying all of it now. Instead of having a feeling about whether a guy is going after too many sliders in the dirt, we have the numbers.

 

Where process over results really helps is with things like exit velocity and barrel rate, two metrics that if you're killing it in there but not getting hits/home runs/extra base hits etc we can tell someone to not screw with their approach and know that the hits are almost certainly going to come. It's a long season and sometimes guys are going to be unlucky.

 

I think the Twins are being smart in their integration of advanced statistics and new technologies, because they seem to be measured in it. They're not demanding that all players follow the same regimen or track 14 different stat profiles. Guys who want more, get more. Coaches (with the analytics team) are the ones who are getting the burden of interpreting & translating the statistical analysis for the players so that it can translate to positive action, not analysis paralysis.

 

It's nice to move into the modern world.

 

I'm always a little baffled by the anti-stats crowd. baseball has always been the most statistically driven major sport. The only thing that's changed is what numbers are looked at and how much importance they have.

 

For example, think about the classic "Triple Crown" stats: Batting Average, Home Runs, and RBIs.

 

Batting Average is still an important stat! It's not valued as highly right now across baseball, but being able to hit for a high average is still a great skill (thank you, Luis Arraez) to have. (and probably an underrated one right now)

 

Home Runs are still the straw that stirs the drink in baseball. More guys are hitting them, but the guys who hit the most are still the guys who get the biggest bucks (for position players).

 

RBIs are still an interesting stat, it's just that we now know they're not a great determinative stat about the player who collects them. If a guy collects 150 RBIs you still know they had a heck of a season and now we know that it can tell you things about how good the lineup in front of that player was. There's still value in being able to look at one stat and immediately knowing those things.

In prior regimes of the Minnesota Twins, advanced statistics were often ignored in favor of “throwing strikes”, “advancing runners” and “working counts”.

 

No doubt the new tech has its place and can improve performance. But so do these "old-fashioned" concepts. It doesn't matter how hard you throw or how much spin you can put on the ball if it's not a strike. Advancing runners surely has its place and contributes to runs. Working counts is crucial, as we know from watching a player like Arraez and how his patience improves not only his own success, but those of the batters to follow him who get to watch lots of pitches.

 

I want the Twins to use every legal and ethical method to get better, but that means using the new technologies AND “throwing strikes”, “advancing runners” and “working counts”.

    • puckstopper1 likes this
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terrydactyls1947
Feb 21 2020 10:20 AM
A couple years ago, my late brother told this story about the Twins and technology. In the early years of the Minnesota Twins, my brother was the upper Midwest Panasonic sales representative and he approached the Twins with a new technology that would help their hitters improve: video cameras. The players and coaches liked the concept and agreed that it might help the hitters get out of slumps or improve their averages. And even pitchers might find some value in it. But the big hurdle to getting this technology was convincing Calvin Griffith to part with $10,000. My brother told me it took months of meetings and pleas from players like Allison, Killebrew, and Battey to finally get Griffith to agree. And now we measure how much pressure the little toe exerts on an optimal swing. Quite the change in 60 years.
    • Riverbrian, DocBauer, Bill Tanner and 1 other like this

I think the most important thing is to get players that agree with sticking with the process.Baseball in the last decade has been in a transition of "old school" into analytics and advanced stats.I love the fact the new group uses things like spray charts, tendencies, and willing to buck the trend of the "old school" norms.How many times I would get furious with Gardy and his "old school" comments about oppisite handed pitchers, despite many times that pitcher having reverse splits, but the "old school" book says have opposite hitters.The classic, he is our guy or he is due against him, only to have the pitcher give up a HR to a guy that has owned him.At least now the people making those calls look at things like that and not just plug and play. 

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puckstopper1
Feb 21 2020 03:57 PM

 

This reminds me of Simon Sinek's Finite vs Infinite mindset. If you haven't heard it I suggest you look up his YouTube videos, it's quite amazing

 

I totally agree! I'm reading Sinek's Infinite Game book now and am looking forward to his talk in March.

 

The Twins are trusting the process.

 

Hopefully they will continue being successful enough doing this that they will be allowed to continue to do so.

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puckstopper1
Feb 21 2020 03:59 PM

Is Royce Lewis in that shot with Donaldson?

 

If I were Lewis, I'd be trying to shadow Donaldson as much as possible...