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2019/20 Off-season Manager Openings

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Front Page: Twins Trade Targets: 4 Potential Starting Pit...

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The Minnesota Twins are in store for a starting rotation overhaul this offseason with only Jose Berrios and Martin Perez under contract....
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After recently reading both Ben Reiter’s Astroball and The MVP Machine by Ben Lindbergh and Travis Shawchik, both highly recommended, I f...
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JOB OPENING: TC Bear

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What Version of Madison Bumgarner Would the Twins Be Getting?

Over the weekend, reports surfaced about the Twins and Giants discussing a potential deal for Madison Bumgarner. The 29-year old pitcher is set to hit free agency this off-season and the Giants are most likely going to try and get something back for their former World Series star. Most of Twins Territory hasn’t seen a lot from Bumgarner in recent years and they may only remember him for his herculean effort in the 2014 Postseason.

What version of Bumgarner would the Twins be getting?
Image courtesy of © Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports
Vintage Bumgarner
From 2011 through 2016, Bumgarner was one of the best pitchers in baseball and he was a workhorse for the Giants on the way to multiple World Series titles. He was a four-time All-Star and a two-time Silver Slugger along with winning the NLCS MVP and the World Series MVP. He finished in the top-10 in the Cy Young voting for four straight seasons and two of those seasons saw him in the top-5.

Statistically speaking, he averaged over 210 innings per season with a 3.00 ERA and a 1.08 WHIP. He averaged 9.1 K/9 and 2.1 BB/9 along with a 121 ERA+ and a 3.07 FIP. According to FanGraphs, he had the ninth highest WAR total among pitchers placing him just behind Chris Sale, Cole Hamels and Zack Greinke. Baseball Reference ranked him in the top-10 among pitcher WAR in 2015 and 2016.

He was on top of the baseball world, but he’s hasn’t looked like the same pitcher in recent years.

Recent Bumgarner
Since 2016, Bumgarner missed time due to injury and he certainly hasn’t been the workhorse he was in the first half of the decade. After averaging over 200 innings per season for six straight years, he has been limited to under 130 innings in 2017 and 2018. Last season, he suffered a broken hand after being hit by a line drive. Back in 2017, he missed time with a Grade 2 sprain of the AC join in his throwing shoulder and bruised ribs. He had a dirt bike accident that year that were the root of his problems.

This season, his ERA is almost 80 points higher than his career mark, but his 1.17 WHIP and his 8.7 K/9 are right in line with his career totals. Batters are barreling up the ball against him at an all-time high. He is allowing a 9.4 Barrel % (6.3 % MLB Average) and an 89.7 Exit Velocity (87.4 MLB Average). His fastball velocity is in the 11th percentile but his fastball spin ranks in the 85th percentile. Also, his curve spin is in the 71st percentile.

Is Bumgarner an Upgrade?
Jose Berrios is coming off his best start of the season and Jake Odorizzi is near the top of the league in ERA. At this point, these two players would be locks for Minnesota’s post-season rotation. Kyle Gibson would be the third pitcher at this point, and he has put up similar numbers to Bumgarner so far this year. They are within 17 points of each other in ERA, FIP, and ERA+. Gibson is striking out more batters and walking fewer batters per nine innings than Bumgarner.

Michael Pineda has been a little bit of a roller coaster ride but his fastball is playing better since he came back from the disabled list. While Pineda has been performing better, Martin Perez has struggled in recent starts. Perez looked like a Cy Young candidate in his first eight starts with a 2.17 ERA and he held opponents to a .644 OPS. Over his last four starts, he has allowed 16 earned runs in 19 innings (7.58 ERA) and batters are getting on base 36% of the time against him.

Looking at the Twins current roster, Bumgarner might be the fourth best pitcher in the Twins rotation. His playoff experience could certainly help, but what version of Bumgarner would the Twins be getting in a trade? Will they get vintage Bumgarner or some version of the player from the last three seasons?

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44 Comments

 

What Version of Madison Bumgarner Would the Twins Be Getting?

The Extended Dance Version, hopefully?

 

    • SQUIRREL, mazeville and Aerodeliria like this
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terrydactyls1947
Jun 19 2019 10:11 AM
Not only are his numbers down but he's just a rental. I hope they don't trade for him unless: The Twins only give up a lottery ticket minor leaguer. OR Wes Johnson sees something fixable in MadBaum, and MadBaum agrees to negotiate a two year contract extension. Otherwise I pass.
    • SQUIRREL, birdwatcher, Harrison Greeley III and 3 others like this

On paper he may not seem like an upgrade over Gibson and Pineda, but the games aren't played on paper. He has the post-season experience and obviously still the drive and fire; however, playing on a mediocre team has hurt his value. Getting a pitcher of his stature would enable Perez to give us another lefty in the bullpen. I wouldn't overspend on him and would like an extension of a couple years, but he would be a good start (good RPs would be an even better start) to improve our pitching. We have the prospects. Don't panic and make bad trades, but we do have to improve our pen.

    • birdwatcher and Aerodeliria like this
I wonder if Madbum couldn't be an effective reliever...
Seems like he's been turning it around over his last 5 starts...

6 IP average - 3.19 ERA - 7.5 K/9 - 9 BB in 31 innings.

If you believe the Twins are ahead of San Francisco in the analytics department (I do) you should feel confident the Twins will find ways to optimize him.
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nicksaviking
Jun 19 2019 11:04 AM

I'd absolutely take him for depth, but I wouldn't be counting on him slotting anywhere higher than 4th in the rotation. I'm not a fan of guys coming over from the NL and I'm not a fan of guys with that much mileage on their arms. 

 

But, a deal for such a big name, even if he's past his prime, would surely give the clubhouse a booster shot of morale. They may not need one, but extra morale isn't on the banned substance list last I checked so it wouldn't hurt.

 

Also, it would make vanimal extra happy if anyone feels like throwing him a bone.

    • Dman likes this
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Brock Beauchamp
Jun 19 2019 11:06 AM
Maybe the Twins need a guy like Bumgarner but I’m so fixated on the bullpen that I don’t really care about anything else.
    • 071063, nicksaviking, brvama and 4 others like this

 

Maybe the Twins need a guy like Bumgarner but I’m so fixated on the bullpen that I don’t really care about anything else.

Bumgarner as a starter could free up Perez for the BP.The question is of course would Perez be an improvement to the BP?

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Brock Beauchamp
Jun 19 2019 11:17 AM

Bumgarner as a starter could free up Perez for the BP. The question is of course would Perez be an improvement to the BP?

Almost certainly but not the kind of guaranteed upgrade I want to see in the bullpen.
    • 071063 likes this
I agree with Brock. The bullpen really needs another high quality arm.
    • caninatl04 likes this

 

I wonder if Madbum couldn't be an effective reliever...

Considering his reaction to pitching behind an opener at the beginning of the season I don''t think he would be.

Personally I'm out on MadBum as a top option.I saw one report that the Giants asking price would be pretty high.If that's the case I would rather see the Twins go after a starter with team control next year to have one more rotation piece locked up.If they add another starter I could see using Pineda and Perez in a piggy back role again.Still need another bullpen arm or two after that also.

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mickeymental
Jun 19 2019 11:34 AM

he could pinch hit for sano.

    • USAFChief, VATwinsFan, Hosken Bombo Disco and 4 others like this
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SpicyGarvSauce
Jun 19 2019 11:38 AM

Can we all agree that getting Bumgarner would be worth it just for the clubhouse celebration/beer drinking after the Twins win the World Series?

Since the start of 2017, Bumgarner has basically been a 3rd or 4th starter who has missed a number of games due to injuries. Factor in he's a rental and there is no way I'd pay a significant price to acquire him. If the Twins can get him with a package of mid range prospects they should go for it. If it costs a top prospect they should pass.

    • mickeymental likes this

I think he would cost extra because he's such a fan favorite, and a link to their WS wins. They're not going to be valuing him based on future production. It would be like trading Joe Mauer. It might happen as a favor, if he wanted to go to a playoff team.

 

And I agree with the point above that he might not be a huge upgrade over Gibson. I think Gibson's stuff could play well in the playoffs. Odorizzi makes me nervous though. All those strikeouts on high fastballs could become dingers against the Yankees.

 

I am just not convinced Odo, Perez or Pineda could subdue a top team. So I'd be fine with MadBum, if the cost was based on his projected future production. But they'd probably do better to find someone on the way up than the way down, like a Ryan Pressly, not a "proven closer" or former star with "playoff experience."

    • LA VIkes Fan likes this

I think people need to look beyond his regular season numbers for a second and realize that Bumgarner would provide something very important for this team: successful playoff experience. Berrios and Perez are the only ones in the rotation with past playoff experience.

 

Berrios in playoff games? 3 IP with 3 ER.

 

Perez in playoff games? 5 IP with 4 ER.

 

Bumgarner in playoff games? 102.1 IP with 24 ER. A 2.11 ERA.

    • Steve Lein, big dog, Hosken Bombo Disco and 1 other like this
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nicksaviking
Jun 19 2019 12:14 PM

 

I think people need to look beyond his regular season numbers for a second and realize that Bumgarner would provide something very important for this team: successful playoff experience. Berrios and Perez are the only ones in the rotation with past playoff experience.

 

Berrios in playoff games? 3 IP with 3 ER.

 

Perez in playoff games? 5 IP with 4 ER.

 

Bumgarner in playoff games? 102.1 IP with 24 ER. A 2.11 ERA.

 

From my perspective experience just translates to getting old. It doesn't carry a ton of weight with me.

    • Twins33, Dakota Diver and jkcarew like this

I thought the headline read "Are," not "Would Be" getting.

 

Perez in the bullpen at the start of the year was none too inspiring, and probably not what he signed up for, not that it should matter. 

 

For the right price, say Nick Gordon straight up, I'd do it.  Mix Smith in, and now you've really got me intrigued.

 

This just feels an awful lot like the Verlander deal for Houston, even if the numbers don't hold up under scrutiny.  All things being as they are right now, out of the pitchers the Twins have right now, plus MadBum, I'd pick him to start Game 3 in Yankee Stadium.  And Game 7 at home.

 

Kind of a pickle--I'm not quite ready to displace any of the starters right now, but what are the odds that one of them doesn't turn into a pumpkin between now and October?  The depth we have right now is Smeltzer and Stewart and Thorpe, right?  

 

Do it.

    • Steve Lein and MN_ExPat like this

From my perspective experience just translates to getting old. It doesn't carry a ton of weight with me.


I mean, he's 29 years old... The wheels aren't falling off quite yet.
    • USAFChief, LA VIkes Fan, big dog and 6 others like this

Hopefully, no version.

 

I for one am happy to go to war in the postseason with the army that gets us there.With Pineda getting better almost every start, we will have 5 good starters from which to choose 4.  

 

Now do we need to add an arm or two to the bullpen, yes.I hope that is where the FO focuses their attention and uses their ammunition to strengthen the pen.

    • brvama and caninatl04 like this

I mean, he's 29 years old... The wheels aren't falling off quite yet.


Debuted at 19 though. Compare with Barry Zito.

https://www.baseball.../zitoba01.shtml
    • nicksaviking likes this
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nicksaviking
Jun 19 2019 12:25 PM

 

Almost certainly but not the kind of guaranteed upgrade I want to see in the bullpen.

 

I'll never see anyone as a guaranteed upgrade, which is probably why I don't view current or past counting stats as a great indicator of continued success for a pitcher moving teams and why I'd prefer to use some of the peripheral and anecdotal evidence to figure out if the guy will be good upon a move here.

 

These guys are uprooting themselves and perhaps their family, going to a new city, a new stadium, a new climate with new teammates and new coaches, sometimes against their will unbeknownst to the fans, sometimes to their excitement but almost always burdened with high expectations.

 

I'm wholly in favor of multiple trades for the pen, but big names aren't going to give me a ton more confidence than under-the-radar names simply because how many psychological human factors are at play.

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nicksaviking
Jun 19 2019 12:26 PM

 

I mean, he's 29 years old... The wheels aren't falling off quite yet.

 

1700 IP is a lot, but he still looks decent. My point was only that I trust talent, not experience.

Debuted at 19 though. Compare with Barry Zito.

https://www.baseball.../zitoba01.shtml


Why are they comparable? They're both left handed? Here's a comparison with Justin Verlander, who also was a work horse with tons of mileage on his arm.

https://www.baseball...verlaju01.shtml
    • Hosken Bombo Disco likes this

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