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2019/20 Off-season Manager Openings

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Front Page: Twins Daily 2019 Award: Pitcher of the Year

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For most of the past decade, the Minnesota Twins have had one of the worst pitching staffs in baseball. Pick a meaningful statistic for p...
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Week four of the AFL season was likely the most interesting to the casual prospect follower, as it featured the circuit’s all-star showca...
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Twins ALDS Game 3 Recap: Twins Season Ends in Heartbreak

The long awaited postseason return to Target Field was met with some mixed emotions, as the Twins brought a 2-0 series deficit back from New York, and were suddenly on the brink of elimination. The Twins gave themselves plenty of chances to give this crowd a reason to erupt, but time and time again they came up short in the clutch, going a dreadful 1-for-12 with runners in scoring position. In the end, the Twins dropped their 16th consecutive postseason game by a score of 5-1, ending the season for the Bomba Squad.
Image courtesy of © David Berding-USA TODAY Sports
Box Score
Odorizzi: 5 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 5 K, 65.9% strikes (54 of 82 pitches)
Home Runs: Rosario (1)
Multi-Hit Games: Rosario (3-for-4, 2B, HR), Arraez (2-for-4, 2B)
WPA of +0.1: Rosario .110, Cron .104
WPA of -0.1: Sano -.165, Kepler -.139, Gonzalez -.118, Cruz -.112, Polanco -.108, Garver -.101

Here's A Look At Today's Win Probability Chart
Attached Image: vs Yankees 10-7-2019.PNG
(Chart via Fangraphs)

Despite being down in the series 2-0, Twins were amped at the start of the game, and Jake Odorizzi gave them something to cheer about in the top of the first. After striking out DJ LeMahieu to start the ballgame, Odorizzi appeared to get Aaron Judge to fly out to Eddie Rosario in right for two quick outs. However, Judge was awarded first base after catcher’s interference was called. That was no problem for Odorizzi, as he came back and got Brett Gardner to strike out and Edwin Encarnacion to fly out to end the inning.

Odorizzi wasn’t able to keep the Yankees off the board for long, however, as Gleyber Torres hit a fly ball that just cleared the wall, and Jake Cave’s glove, in left. Rocco Baldelli went out and asked the umpires to review the home run for fan interference, and while a fan did reach over the railing and made contact with the ball, it was clearly already over the fence, along with Cave’s glove, before the fan touched it. Luckily for the Twins, the home run came with nobody on base, which feels like a rare occurrence for the Yankees against the Twins of late.

The Twins gave themselves an excellent opportunity to get on the scoreboard themselves in the bottom of the second. Eddie Rosario drove a pitch about six inches above the zone deep off the top of the right-center field wall for a lead off double, narrowly missing a home run. After a Mitch Garver walk, and a Luis Arraez single, the Twins had the bases loaded and nobody out. However, as was the narrative all season long, the Twins failed to get the job done with the bases loaded, thanks to a Miguel Sano popup, and strikeouts from Marwin Gonzalez and Jake Cave.

Gio Urshela led off the Yankee third with a blopper that dropped in front a Jake Cave, who inexplicably laid out for the baseball, coming up a few feet short, and allowing the ball to get past him, turning a routine single into a lead off double for Urshela. Urshela was able to advance to third on a DJ LeMahieu ground out, and looked like he might be stranded there after Aaron Judge struck out. However, Brett Gardner came through with a two-out single that went right past a shifted Miguel Sano, giving the Yankees a 2-0 lead.

After singles from Jorge Polanco and Eddie Rosario, the Twins had another scoring chance with two on and two out, for Mitch Garver, in the bottom of the third. After getting ahead in the count 3-0, Garver took what was pretty clearly ball four high, however, umpire Gary Cederstrom didn’t see it that way, calling it a strike. After that, Luis Severino was able to battle back and strike out Garver to end the inning.

Jake Odorizzi did his job in the fourth and fifth innings, by keeping the Yankees off the board and working two pretty clean innings. Overall, for the night, Odorizzi earned a tip of the cap for doing his job by limiting the Yankees to just two runs across five innings, keeping the Twins in the game into the later innings.

Luis Arraez got yet another Twins rally attempt going in the bottom of the sixth, when he drilled a one-out double that split the gap in left-center field. Miguel Sano followed that up with good at-bat, working the count full before driving a ball that left the bat at 107.9 MPH, toward the wall in right, but Aaron Judge used all of his 6’8” frame to reach up and snare the ball out of midair. Marwin Gonzalez followed that up by driving a flyball high into the Minnesota sky, but that ball came up just shy of the fence, as Judge made the catch on the warning track to end the Twins sixth.

The Yankees added to their lead in the top of the seventh after yet another clutch hit off the bat of Didi Gregorius. Gleyber Torres started the inning with a ringing double off of Taylor Rogers. Then with one out, Gregorius ripped a single down the first base line, bringing around Torres to extend the Yankee lead to three.

It took a long, and I mean long, time but the Twins were finally able to get on the board thanks to this Eddie Rosario blast to lead off the bottom of the eighth.



The Yankees tacked on a couple more runs in the ninth to extend their lead to four in the top of the ninth. Cameron Maybin took Sergio Romo deep, with what looked like a lazy fly ball that just cleared the wall in left. They tacked on their fifth, and final, run of the game, thanks to, you guessed it, yet another RBI off the bat of Didi Gregorius.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the Twins got themselves a little rally going in the bottom of the ninth, getting each of the first two hitters on to lead off the inning. However, the ninth ended in the same way as every other Twins rally of the ballgame. Max Kepler picked up the first out of the inning, by striking out three straight sliders from Aroldis Chapman. Jorge Polanco then lined a ball up the middle that appeared destined for a base hit until Didi Gregorius grabbed the ball, and with it the Twins hopes and dreams. The Twins season came to an end with Nelson Cruz at the plate looking at strike three right down the middle.

The Twins ended the game going just 3-for-9 on balls put in play over 100 MPH. Those nine batted balls had an average expected batting average of .612. Instead, the Twins got just over half of that, and of course all the ones that didn’t drop for a hit were the ones hit in the highest leverage spots, but hey that’s baseball.

Postgame with Baldelli:



Bullpen Usage
Here’s a quick look at the number of pitches thrown by the bullpen over the past five days:

Attached Image: 10-7-2019 vs Yankees.PNG

ALDS Game Recaps:
Twins ALDS Game 2 Recap: Nothing Works, Twins Lose 12th Straight To Yankees
Twins ALDS Game 1 Recap: Bad Defense, Questionable Management Leads to Loss

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110 Comments

Completely disappointed.No one remembers if you don't win it all.The Twins senior management has the long-time Red Sox/Cubs approach - if we field a team that is competitive in the regular season, people will show up.We've made our money, who cares about championships?

 

If they were serious about winning - they would have picked up some serious starting pitching, told Buxton to stay at AAA until he figures out how to avoid crashing into walls (injuries keep him off the field - if he can't play, he doesn't help the team), and hired a manager who knows how to run a bullpen.Baldelli seems to be just like Gardenhire in that regard - completely indefensible bullpen moves.  

 

The real issue, though, is not showing up to play in the playoffs.Baldelli took Molitor's guys, had a DH added to the mix (who had a great year), and rode them to 101 wins.And, then he has the gall to say that he isn't disappointed.  

 

In the real world, Baldelli would be fired for that performance and statement.He's clueless.

    • Madisonsdad likes this
The game of baseball teeters in the strike zone. In all three games it was obvious the empire's slanted the strike zone in the Yankees favored. Smoltz mention this in game 2 from the broadcast booth. the best thing that could happen to bring more parity into MLB is electronic balls and strikes... Especially in the playoffs. do you think mlb or any of the networks want to see Minnesota and the Nationals in the world series... NNY is a superior team but Minnesota never even had a chance... It was like the outcome was decided before the games were even played.
    • birdwatcher, h2oface, mikelink45 and 1 other like this
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tarheeltwinsfan
Oct 08 2019 07:21 AM

It is going to be a long, cold winter, even here in North Carolina.

 

Fun fact, the Twins winning percentage versus the AL divisions:

 

ALC: 66%

ALW: 68%

ALE: 63%

 

That seems pretty much like a team that just beat other teams.

32-37 against teams over .500.The only playoff team with a losing record in those games.

    • Danchat, mikelink45, lukeduke1980 and 1 other like this

 

The 2nd inning was so painful. Bases loaded, no outs, and came up empty.

I thought it was interesting choice by the director, meant to evoke memories of the Phil Cuzzi inning in 2009 which had the same result.

 

and Go Gophers!

Too bad baseball doesn't have a "Quick Lane Bowl" :)

    • Madisonsdad, Danchat, Hosken Bombo Disco and 2 others like this
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SpicyGarvSauce
Oct 08 2019 07:44 AM

 

Being at this game, this fan base is pathetic. They cheer cheer cheer every terrible bullpen pitcher when they announce his name, and they stand with blank looks in the urinal line during the game rather than being pissed off at how terrible this team played.

 

Then after the game the resounding opinion is "well shoot it was a fun season and they weren't supposed to be this good."

 

Not only does this team not know how to win, this fan base doesn't know how to expect winning.

This is the same fan base that was chanting "over-rated" when Aaron Judge was at the plate.

 

Yeah, clueless.

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Brock Beauchamp
Oct 08 2019 07:50 AM

But you're not playing all teams from the other divisions; you're playing the best. Our winning percentage against "winning" teams was below .500.

And the Red Sox were a good team who are saddeled in a division with two great teams. If you traded the two Sox teams, I would wager that you would have seen more wins by the Red Sox and fewer by the White Sox.

The numbers you've posted are interesting, but for this discussion who we did against divisions writ large is unimportant. How we did against playoff teams is, and the Yankees and Rays did a number on us while we got a series win against the 'Stros.

I think there's a good analog to my college team, Villanova. The Big East is good competition, but it's not the Big 10 or the ACC. And 2016 and 2018 excepted, it shows in the tournament.

The Twins were 5-2 against Tampa.
    • Danchat and bighat like this
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SpicyGarvSauce
Oct 08 2019 07:52 AM

Just saw this on Twitter...

 

Since the Twins last postseason victory, every other team in the AL Central has played in the World Series with two of them winning the entire thing (Chicago & Kansas City).

 

How pathetic is that?

    • Hosken Bombo Disco, twinssporto and bighat like this

One other depressing note.The Yankee dominated with Stanton and Judge contributing nothing but 1 RBI in game 1 (Stanton) and a good catch in game 3 (Judge).

 

Imagine the carnage if they had contributed more.

 

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SpicyGarvSauce
Oct 08 2019 08:05 AM

 

One other depressing note.The Yankee dominated with Stanton and Judge contributing nothing but 1 RBI in game 1 (Stanton) and a good catch in game 3 (Judge).

 

Imagine the carnage if they had contributed more.

 

That is because the Twins refused to attack these guys (especially Judge) and throw them competitive pitches in general.

Sign me up for 2020.I have watched this team since 1961 and I am not stopping now.I have watched playoff futility throughout except for 1965, 1987, 1991 and it always leaves a bad taste - like watching the Vikings in the Superbowl in the old days, the league championship now (6 losses). We are the only team to be swept - every other underdog has found a way to at least 4 game series.It is the way we lose, the way we are overwhelmed like the Giants 51 - 0 thrashing of the Vikes or the listless ways we lost the superbowls.I wand some fire, some embarrassment, some anger.No Rocco, it is not okay to just show up, I believe you are all paid to compete."“We just went out there and were beaten by a team that played better than us for three games,” Twins manager Rocco Baldelli said. “It’s OK to acknowledge that. We’ll be back.”WHY?

I know we always think that the Yankees get the breaks.If they do it might have to do with the amazing way they play the game and the decisions that they make.I have seen articles about MOY and talk about Boone and Baldelli.It is Boone all the way.That team has a fire our team doesn't.

We might have beat them in the juiced ball HR record, but in the end, who cares?The Yankees, when they were not hitting a HR still came up with clutch hits.Our 1 for 12 with RISP is horrible.  

Does anyone know how I can see the season record for hitting with RISP?  

 

I know some questioned Arraez on the roster (I could have seem him sitting out game one) but in reality he is the one who will at least have a chance to get on base.

 

My questions are how Kepler and Adrianza could be on the roster when they had not hit for an extended period before the playoffs.

 

When I look at the collective Playoff stats (today) Arraez is #7 in batting, Rosario is 23, Gonzalves is 30 and tied with Polanco.When I go to the bottom of the list there is Max Kepler 000.Would LaMonte Wade have done worst?Miguel Sano hit 083.By the way at this point the batter with the highest average in the AL in the Post Season is Robbie Grossman. 

 

Like I said - bring on 2020, at least it provides me with stories from February through November.

 

We put Gibson on our roster while the Yankees left off Sabathia - the Post Season is not about sentiment. 

    • Madisonsdad, h2oface, bighat and 1 other like this
I'm mad. Not at the Twins. At the enablers. Some of them write on this site. Have an opinion that the Twins made smart moves and savvy trades, but don't make fun of very knowledgeable fans who said we didn't do enough. Don't make fun of fans for "panicking" while the team lost an 11.5 game division lead. Don't make fun of fans who say Sano's k's limit his upside and that k's in general are not just another out. Don't make fun of fans who say that Buxton hurts the team by hurting himself.

Don't tell me that pitching was over-priced at the deadline when Stroman went for a package we were apparently mad we didn't have a chance to beat. When the big guys are hoarding prospects to get under the cap, we're hoarding prospects because... why? Evidence suggests the trade market was actually depressed by lack of competition. And don't make fun of fans for flipping the f out this off-season when we trade for a pitcher anyway, long after they may have made an impact on an actual winner.

Don't make fun of fans who acknowledge the difficulty in beating the Yankees in the playoffs based on history. The players are different, but the pressure is the same. The talent gap is the same. Every team faces adversity. The Yankees ability to overcome is the same. The Twins inability to avoid being swallowed up is the same. (Garver got a bad call 3-0 and then swing through a hanging slider down the middle 3-1). In the end the results are the same, and frustratingly predictable.

Writers said the teams were evenly matched. That the East was as bad as the Central. The Twins played 6 fewer games against teams with winning records. And finished with 5 more losses, a huge 7.5 game deficit against playoff level teams.

Yankees lost German, Hicks, and Betances and kept rolling. Yankees added Encarnacion early to have him longer and the Twins waited until they couldn't even squeeze in a physical before adding another Addison Reed type with a dead arm.

Gonzales playing first and Sano playing third? Pen usage? Kepler?

And then there's Presley...
    • Madisonsdad, mikelink45, bighat and 1 other like this
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Hosken Bombo Disco
Oct 08 2019 09:12 AM

Just saw this on Twitter...
 
Since the Twins last postseason victory, every other team in the AL Central has played in the World Series with two of them winning the entire thing (Chicago & Kansas City).
 
How pathetic is that?

And from 2012-2016, the AL Central represented in the World Series four times in a span of five years.

But, small market!
    • MNT1996 likes this
Going forward I don't want the Twins to ever be in a situation* where they have to start a Dobnak type in the playoffs ever again.

So tired of looking at box scores over the years and seeing Dobnak, Slowey, Duensing, Baker as a starter.

*barring massive injuries
    • USAFChief, h2oface, mikelink45 and 2 others like this

I didn't watch a minute of the series, partially due to travel and other conflicts. But I simply don't like post-season baseball and I'm not sure I would have watched anyway. It's like running a marathon and then having a series of 100-yard dashes among the top 10 finishers to decide the winner. And, really, the only question in my mind going in against the Yankees was what the scores would be in the three losses.

 

Thanks to the Twins (and TD) for six months of pleasure and success---more than any of us would have expected in March. They finished 3rd in a league of 15. They have a young core that should get better in the next few seasons. They have enough salary space to add key pieces. They have one of the best minor-league systems in baseball that has produced key players like Garver, Arraez, and Polanco from modest investments in signing bonuses and draft positions.

 

Don't let a week of disappointment ruin a summer of fun! There's a lot to which to look forward! I'm anxious to find out if Graterol can be our ace in the next couple of years. I'm anxious to see what Arraez does with a full season. I'm anxious to see if Sano can finally convince me to root for him again. I'm anxious to see what Buxton can do if he can stay healthy for a full season. Go Twins!

    • denarded and Madisonsdad like this
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MMMordabito
Oct 08 2019 09:49 AM

Worst playoff team in pro sports history (tied with 70s Blackhawks)

I didn't watch a minute of the series, partially due to travel and other conflicts. But I simply don't like post-season baseball and I'm not sure I would have watched anyway. It's like running a marathon and then having a series of 100-yard dashes among the top 10 finishers to decide the winner. And, really, the only question in my mind going in against the Yankees was what the scores would be in the three losses.

Thanks to the Twins (and TD) for six months of pleasure and success---more than any of us would have expected in March. They finished 3rd in a league of 15. They have a young core that should get better in the next few seasons. They have enough salary space to add key pieces. They have one of the best minor-league systems in baseball that has produced key players like Garver, Arraez, and Polanco from modest investments in signing bonuses and draft positions.

Don't let a week of disappointment ruin a summer of fun! There's a lot to which to look forward! I'm anxious to find out if Graterol can be our ace in the next couple of years. I'm anxious to see what Arraez does with a full season. I'm anxious to see if Sano can finally convince me to root for him again. I'm anxious to see what Buxton can do if he can stay healthy for a full season. Go Twins!


I concur on the playoffs....

 

Going forward I don't want the Twins to ever be in a situation* where they have to start a Dobnak type in the playoffs ever again.

So tired of looking at box scores over the years and seeing Dobnak, Slowey, Duensing, Baker as a starter.

*barring massive injuries

FWIW, Slowey never made a postseason appearance at all. And Baker never got a start in the postseason. Just a few mop-up innings in relief in 2010, game 3. (Plus game 163 vs Detroit in 2009, of course.) I actually kind of wish Baker had gotten a postseason start those years, maybe in place of Duensing in 2010.

 

I suppose you could also list Blackburn and Bonser in this group, although Blackburn did well in his postseason turn vs the Yankees in 2009 (plus his game 163 vs the White Sox in 2008). Silva? Lohse?

 

If they go the route of the Rays, I suspect we'll see more rando starters in our future, although with quick hooks in bullpen-style games.

 

I didn't watch a minute of the series, partially due to travel and other conflicts. But I simply don't like post-season baseball and I'm not sure I would have watched anyway. It's like running a marathon and then having a series of 100-yard dashes among the top 10 finishers to decide the winner.

Do you take the same view of the 1987 and 1991 postseasons? :)

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MMMordabito
Oct 08 2019 09:52 AM

 

Just saw this on Twitter...

 

Since the Twins last postseason victory, every other team in the AL Central has played in the World Series with two of them winning the entire thing (Chicago & Kansas City).

 

How pathetic is that?

 

Pretty goddamn pathetic .... Bunch of losers

    • SpicyGarvSauce likes this
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Battle ur tail off
Oct 08 2019 09:53 AM

This was extremely disappointing. 

 

Twins just didn't do any of the little things they needed to do to win even a game this series. I was extremely disappointed in Sano and Garver. Neither did much of anything at the plate, Sano struck out just way too much and Garver didn't give us much either. It hurts when 2 of your better run producers give you nothing.

 

As for Rocco. Please don't ever again think that you have any chance at winning a game with the worst pitchers in your arsenal in Yankee stadium. Use up guys like Berrios, Rogers, May, Duffey until their arms fall off. There is no tomorrow. Oh and a guy like Dobnak is a cool cat, but I would never think about running him out there to start a playoff game.

 

Thank you to Arraez for showing a pulse and showing us he is the best hitter on this team without question. Thank you to Eddie Rosario for hammering a few pitches and actually taking some that weren't hittable. Thank you to Jorge Polanco for giving us good at bats all throughout the series and playing excellent defense. 

 

I'm still with this team 100%, but thing will need to change if they want to ever advance in the postseason. The front office could do us fans a solid by actually bringing in a stud or 2 to throw the ball next season. We'll see I guess, but I am not holding my breath. 

 

    • wavedog, Madisonsdad, mikelink45 and 1 other like this

Excellent season for the 2019 Minnesota Twins. Next goal: Build a team that can win playoff games. How to do that? I have no idea. However...

 

The whole team needs to work on their fielding. Besides setting a home run record, I'm pretty sure they also set a record for fielding errors by a Twins team. Better fielding would help Twins pitchers feel a bit more confident against a tough opponent. 

 

Start stealing bases again. Besides getting runners into scoring position, this will set a more aggressive tone for the whole club. They really, really need to be more than a station-to-station offense. Stealing bases puts more pressure on the opponent's defense, sometimes disrupting their pitcher. 

 

In short, Twins players need to become more rounded in their skills and their play. I hope to see signs of this progress by next spring. 

    • wavedog, Longdistancetwins, mikelink45 and 2 others like this

 

I personally am looking very forward to watching the Astros squash the Yankees

Agreed. As much as the Twins were not a good match for the Yankees, the Bronx Bombers will be diffused by three Cy Young winners in Houston. 

 

Showdemfreud!

    • Longdistancetwins and SoDakTwinsFan4 like this

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