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2018 Prospect Rankings: Baseball Prospectus

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Article: Each Minnesota Team’s Greatest Finish

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Astros Expected to Acquire Gerrit Cole

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2017-18 non-Twins MLB Off-Season Transactions Thread

Other Baseball Today, 11:51 AM
I thought I'd get this going now (and pin it), even though we still have a few weeks to go. Please use this thread to track MLB NON-TWINS...
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Twins Acquire Two Prospects For International Bonus Money

Minnesota missed out on the Shohei Ohtani sweepstakes but there might be some good news on the horizon. There are multiple teams still in the race for Ohtani and they need international slot money to spend on the two-way Japanese star.

On Wednesday night, the Twins struck two deals to send money to teams still in the race for Ohtani. What prospects did the Twins receive? How did Minnesota have this money? Who will get some of their international slot money?
Image courtesy of Sipa USA-USA TODAY NETWORK
Marte Money
Jelfry Marte had been signed by the Twins to a $3 million deal this summer. However, an issue found on his physical exam meant the deal was voided. With Marte’s money back in their international pool, Minnesota had $3.245 million to try and lure Ohtani to the Midwest. Last weekend, he informed the Twins that he wouldn’t be signing with them. This allowed the club to trade away some of their pool money to eager Ohtani suitors.

Mariners Trade

Catcher David Banuelos, a 21-year old Ontario, CA native, was drafted this year by Seattle in the fifth round out of Long Beach State. He spent all of this season in the Northwest League (Short-A) where he hit .236/.331/.394 with four home runs and eight doubles in 36 games. He made 26 starts behind the plate with a .982 fielding percentage. He threw out 18 potential runners and allowed 30 stolen bases.

With his college experience, he is considered a strong defender. He shows the ability to get on base and he has some power from the right-side of the plate. He could develop into a big league catcher in the years to come.

Angels Trade

Outfielder Jacob Pearson, a 19-year old, was drafted this year by the Angels in the third round. Los Angeles had to go overslot and offer him a $1 million to lure him away from his LSU commitment. He spent all of last season in the Arizona League (Rookie) where he hit .226/.302/.284 with seven doubles and a triple in 40 games. He played center field and left field during his professional debut but 31 of his 40 starts came in left.

His defensive skills are a weak spot at this point in his career but he’s still a teenager. The Twins hope he can continue to develop the right kind of speed and power combination to make him a legitimate threat at the plate.

So how did the Twins do? Leave a COMMENT and start the discussion.

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140 Comments

 

We seem happy that the Twins did something. But are these good values? Are each of these players worth $1M?

 

It's not really $2 million, the Twins didn't send over the money. They traded the ability to spend $2 million in the international marketplace. So it comes down to an opportunity cost thing - are these two players (plus the saved $2 million) better than the players the Twins could have gotten in the international market?

I'd argue that once Maitan was gone, the Twins probably used this money as well as it can be. Especially since they still have $1.2 million they can use on Marte or another prospect. You could argue they should have gone after Maitan two weeks ago but that would have meant giving up their one advantage in the Ohtani sweepstakes, money. I'm glad the front office took a swing at Ohtani rather than the safe play of Maitan, even if it means we are where we are now and missed out on both. Ohtani could have changed the trajectory of the franchise, you have to swing for the fences sometimes.

    • Twins33, DocBauer, gagu and 4 others like this
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Dance with Disco Dan
Dec 07 2017 10:07 AM

 

MLB.com ranks Pearson 22 in the Twins system. The mariners prospect is not listed in our top 30

 

I am glad that MLB.com thinks well of Pearson but I will not understand (or fully credit) their prospect list until they learn about Akil Baddoo. He played great in the Appy League (.357/.478/.579) and is two months younger than Pearson who struggled in Rookie ball. Normally, I'd chalk it up to MLB.com still catching up on a blossoming, late-round prospect but Baddoo was a second-round pick (74th overall). 

 

 As for the trade, I think this is a good use of the remaining pool funds particularly since some of the premium, available Braves prospects have signed elsewhere. I was really hoping that they'd get at least one but didn't immediately realize that teams were allowed to dip into next year's pool to sign those guys reducing the Twins' purchasing power with $3m+ left in this year's pool. 

 

Catching depth and a young player reputed to have plus speed and good bat speed are always welcome additions to the farm system.

 

We’re not paying $1M. We’re paying the opportunity of spending $1M. Falvine likely didn’t see better options remaining. Still have $1M

 

No "we" don't. The Twins lost this money.

So, are these players collectively worth $2M?

So it comes down to an opportunity cost thing - are these two players (plus the saved $2 million) better than the players the Twins could have gotten in the international market?


Not sure what your point is because you're arguing something that has nothing to do with what I asked. Did the Twins get a good deal? Were these players worth the lost $2M in "opportunity cost" (or whatever term you or anyone else choose to use)? Or should the Twins have used the money to pick up some international free agents? Did the new front office just help other teams more than what the Twins got in return?
Underwhelming, but not sure what else they could do if they didn't like the braves players. Once they took the money away from a poor person, I wondered what their plans were for it
    • gunnarthor likes this

Not sure what your point is because you're arguing something that has nothing to do with what I asked. Did the Twins get a good deal? Were these players worth the lost $2M in "opportunity cost" (or whatever term you or anyone else choose to use)? Or should the Twins have used the money to pick up some international free agents? Did the new front office just help other teams more than what the Twins got in return?


Considering the other options, once the top 2-3 Braves prospects came off the board, it was probably worth it.
    • Doomtints likes this

 

I am glad that MLB.com thinks well of Pearson but I will not understand (or fully credit) their prospect list until they learn about Akil Baddoo. He played great in the Appy League (.357/.478/.579) and is two months younger than Pearson who struggled in Rookie ball. Normally, I'd chalk it up to MLB.com still catching up on a blossoming, late-round prospect but Baddoo was a second-round pick (74th overall). 

 

 As for the trade, I think this is a good use of the remaining pool funds particularly since some of the premium, available Braves prospects have signed elsewhere. I was really hoping that they'd get at least one but didn't immediately realize that teams were allowed to dip into next year's pool to sign those guys reducing the Twins' purchasing power with $3m+ left in this year's pool. 

 

Catching depth and a young player reputed to have plus speed and good bat speed are always welcome additions to the farm system.

 

Keep in mind these rankings have not been updated since last offseason. They "update" the rankings by slotting players in as drafted/acquired, but they don't re-rank them until late January. Baddoo will be much higher this year.

    • markos likes this

They changed it to after the world series.




Thanks for the update
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IndianaTwin
Dec 07 2017 10:37 AM

To recap...

  • The batch of prospects freed up from Atlanta was "only" 12 guys.
  • Based on the apparent weakness of the Angels minor league system, they may not be the best judge of talent. If they spent $2.2 million on Maitan, he may not be worth that.
  • If the "best" prospect is not worth $2.2 million and there were only 12 new guys for 30 teams to go after, it seems reasonable to think that the Twins were going to have a hard time spending the entire $3+ million within the needed timeframe

Instead, the Twins got...

  • A "free" 3rd rounder that likely fell (according to one report, apparently, from as high as the low 1st round)
  • A "free" 5th rounder at a position that doesn't have much depth
  • And still have a bit of international money to spend on someone from the batch of Braves prospects, if desired. Or to trade to one of the other teams in the Ohtani derby. 

That sounds like a win to me. The only question is whether they might have gotten even more from the Angels or Mariners, but I'm glad to trust the Falvine wisdom on this. I doubt they only made two calls on this.

    • Steve Lein, Twins33, Tuba and 12 others like this

Not sure what your point is because you're arguing something that has nothing to do with what I asked. Did the Twins get a good deal? Were these players worth the lost $2M in "opportunity cost" (or whatever term you or anyone else choose to use)? Or should the Twins have used the money to pick up some international free agents? Did the new front office just help other teams more than what the Twins got in return?


I know the term seems like nitpicking but it's not. The Twins did not send $1 million to the Angels and Mariners - there was no wire transfer of funds or anything like that. They simply traded their right to spend $1 million on international players. The best analogy would be if you're at Circus Pizza and you have won 400 prize tickets and you traded them to a friend for his roller blades. You haven't lost money, you've lost a currency you can only spend in a specific system with certain rules.

That matters for two reasons:

(1) First of all, the state of that system. Late in the year, that international money isn't worth as much since the cupboard is pretty bare. (In our circus pizza analogy, lots of other kids redeemed their tickets for toys already so the good toys are gone). The Twins likely wouldn't have been able to use that international money to get as quality of prospects as they got via trade.

(2) Secondly, the Twins still have that $2 million they would have spent (since they never sent actual money, just the right to spend money). That $2 million in the budget can now be used on free agents or scouting or a kickass trip for employees to Circus Pizza. That's where opportunity cost comes in - the Twins have the opportunity to use those funds elsewhere.

It's a good trade, especially if the Twins use the remainder to sign Marte at a lower price as is rumored. They basically will have traded Marte at a high price for Marte at a low price + 2 B/C prospects + 2 million to spend elsewhere.
    • Carole Keller, Twins33, chaderic20 and 12 others like this

 

Underwhelming, but not sure what else they could do if they didn't like the braves players. Once they took the money away from a poor person, I wondered what their plans were for it

 

Twins aren't a charity. They probably shouldn't go all in on a guy with vision issues.

    • 70charger, Danchat, RaymondLuxuryYacht and 1 other like this

 

To recap...

  • The batch of prospects freed up from Atlanta was "only" 12 guys.
  • Based on the apparent weakness of the Angels minor league system, they may not be the best judge of talent. If they spent $2.2 million on Maitan, he may not be worth that.
  • If the "best" prospect is not worth $2.2 million and there were only 12 new guys for 30 teams to go after, it seems reasonable to think that the Twins were going to have a hard time spending the entire $3+ million within the needed timeframe

Instead, the Twins got...

  • A "free" 3rd rounder that likely fell (according to one report, apparently, from as high as the low 1st round)
  • A "free" 5th rounder at a position that doesn't have much depth
  • And still have a bit of international money to spend on someone from the batch of Braves prospects, if desired. Or to trade to one of the other teams in the Ohtani derby. 

That sounds like a win to me. The only question is whether they might have gotten even more from the Angels or Mariners, but I'm glad to trust the Falvine wisdom on this. I doubt they only made two calls on this.

 

It is definitely a win. They received real assets for the space they traded away. And what they got seems to be in line with what the space goes for in other trades.

 

Once the Marte deal fell through, they did have limited options, and it is not outrageous to take a pass on all of the Braves prospects.

    • IndianaTwin, gagu, Tom Froemming and 1 other like this

Twins aren't a charity. They probably shouldn't go all in on a guy with vision issues.


They signed a contract. That they voided to try to get ohtani. Do people really think he had vision issues so bad he can't play baseball? He may have vision issues, but anyone want to bet on if he signs with someone and plays next year?
    • gunnarthor likes this

 

They signed a contract. That they voided to try to get ohtani. Do people really think he had vision issues so bad he can't play baseball? He may have vision issues, but anyone want to bet on if he signs with someone and plays next year?

 

He didn't sign a contract, he had an agreement that was voided because he failed a physical. This isn't unprecedented in international guys, even this exact situation.

 

They wouldn't be foolish enough to void this contract without cause for a really small chance at Ohtani. Wouldn't be worth the future blowback in that market. Looks like there is even a small chance that they might sign Marte for a reduced rate. 

    • 70charger, PseudoSABR, RaymondLuxuryYacht and 4 others like this
Why would they sign him, if he can't play baseball because he failed his physical?
We spent a million dollars apiece for two prospects that signed earlier for a combined 1.3 million????

We spent a million dollars apiece for two prospects that signed earlier for a combined 1.3 million????


No. They spent no money at all. They sent the right to spend money away. If they freely there were no good prospects to sign, this kind of trade makes sense.
    • gunnarthor and Tom Froemming like this

 

Why would they sign him, if he can't play baseball because he failed his physical?

 

Because it is a much more acceptable risk for the team at a much lower number. I don't think he *can't* play baseball, just not very likely to be successful at higher levels with his vision situation.

 

I know you realize all this.

    • birdwatcher, Taildragger8791 and gagu like this
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Hollywood42
Dec 07 2017 11:07 AM

 

See I would have them flipped. Catcher guy interests me but I'm not interested in an outfielder with zero power and can't field. Can't possibly be ahead of Rooker. Rooker was mashing.

 

Where'd you read that? I've great that he's a great athlete, good power and speed, and that he could be a perennial 20-20 guy in the future. Only bad grade he has is his arm, which is understandable given an injury (with surgery, if I recall correctly), 1 or 2 years ago

    • gagu likes this

Because it is a much more acceptable risk for the team at a much lower number. I don't think he *can't* play baseball, just not very likely to be successful at higher levels with his vision situation.
 
I know you realize all this.


We won't agree. They reneged on the deal to try to get ohtani. Not exactly the moral high road.
    • gunnarthor likes this
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ashburyjohn
Dec 07 2017 11:33 AM

Why would they sign him, if he can't play baseball because he failed his physical?

Mod note: Mike, and everyone, please don't use strawman arguments like this one.

    • 70charger and RaymondLuxuryYacht like this

 

We won't agree. They reneged on the deal to try to get ohtani. Not exactly the moral high road.

 

What are you basing that on? The deal was voided months before it was clear Ohtani was coming to the majors. It just became public when prospect writers were discussing total international space available.

 

But if true, it would be a moral problem and it would backfire going forward in the international market.

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ashburyjohn
Dec 07 2017 11:36 AM

We won't agree. They reneged on the deal to try to get ohtani. Not exactly the moral high road.

I'm with you on the optics of this. I am in the camp generally hoping they don't sign him; I don't want questions about "my" team putting the squeeze on players financially. The news about "no hard feelings on either side" suggests it could happen though.

 

When the news of the contract voiding broke, the Baseball America article mentioned a similar case from about a decade ago; a different team signed him for half a million instead, and afterward his career quietly fizzled. I don't hope for bad luck like that for this player, but it's a way this could end up playing out.

    • nicksaviking and gagu like this
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twinsfanstreif
Dec 07 2017 11:43 AM

MLB.com ranks Pearson 22 in the Twins system. The mariners prospect is not listed in our top 30


Didn't MLB.com have him as the Mariners #10 prospect? Now he's not even in our top 30?! Is our system that good or is the M's system that bad? I think they had Pearson ranked quite a bit higher in the Angel's system too

Wonder whether there would have been such a scrutiny if Jacob Pearce and David Banuelos were IFA and the Twins have given each $1 mil bonus.Because this is pretty much what they did, other than the $2M was opportunity vs. actual cost.

 

I think that these guys come with some critical flaws, but I would venture an educated guess saying that they are better than any IFA available before July, including Atlanta's freed agents bunch.

 

Pearce has Ben Revere written all over him.Similar speed, equally "strong" arm, bit less hit tool, bit more power tool.He also has second base written all over him.

 

Banuelos is interesting. Allegedly he cannot hit. BA has Rene Rivera and Jose Molina as comparables.He hit well enough in college to be a First team All American.Had a .280/.369/.432 career line in college, which is not horrible.His defense is allegedly phenomenal.Started his pro career in ss A ball, which is a bit too high probably.Regardless, he can hit better than Navarretto and maybe Rortvedt 

 

Neither is a top 20 prospect for the Twins, but they are top 60 prospects, and the Twins as far as catchers go, had only 2 of those (Garver not included)

 

Great move

 

    • maxisagod, ThejacKmp, LA VIkes Fan and 4 others like this

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