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Game Thread Twins vs. White Sox, 6/22 @ 12:10pm

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 03:15 PM
  I Have Heartburn So Bad It's Coming Out Of My Ears     An enterprising scientist with time on his hands decided t...
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SERIES: My Twins Pre/Postgame Columns for Zone Coverage

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 03:07 PM
In case you don't see these on Twitter and Facebook, I'm going to share my pre and postgame stuff from Zone Coverage in this thread....
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Article: Gee, The Twins Signed A Pitcher

Twins Minor League Talk Today, 02:54 PM
According to Jon Heyman, the Minnesota Twins have signed veteran right-handed pitcher Dillon Gee to a minor league contract. He will star...
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Article: Twins 4, White Sox 2: The Machine Set To Attack...

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 02:51 PM
Jose Berrios was brilliant, Miguel Sano hammered another mammoth home run and the Twins earned a come-from-behind victory Wednesday night...
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Article: 2017 Elizabethton Twins Roster Preview

Twins Minor League Talk Today, 02:44 PM
UPDATED (Thursday afternoon): added OF Brent Rooker, OF Mark Contreras, LHP Bryan Sammons, and RHP Calvin Faucher.On Thursday, the Elizab...
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Trade Candidate: Brian Duensing

The Trade Deadline is fast approaching. Teams have until Thursday to make moves without needing to worry about waivers. One name that has not been mentioned much is Brian Duensing.
Image courtesy of Steve Bisig
The Trade Deadline is fast approaching. Teams have until Thursday to make moves without needing to worry about waivers. On these pages, we have looked at the trade candidacies of Kurt Suzuki, Kevin Correia and Josh Willingham. One of our writers was ready to post one on Kendrys Morales, but he was traded to Seattle moments before the article was set to be posted here.

One name that has not been mentioned much is Brian Duensing. The left-hander is in his second consecutive season as a full-time reliever. Previous to that, he had been given a couple of opportunities to start, to mixed results.
Duensing is putting up some terrific numbers this year, maybe even surprisingly so. In 40 games, he has a 2.27 ERA and a 1.19 WHIP. He has been charged with a run in just five of those outings. He’s been even better of late. He has gone nine consecutive outings without allowing a run. He has given up just one run over his past 16 games (15.1 innings).

One of the reasons he struggled as a starter was because he really struggled against right-handed hitters. This year, right-handers are hitting .244/.330/.397 (.727) off of him. Left-handers are hitting just .231/.268/.292 (.560) against him. You notice more of a split when looking at his strikeout and walk rates. He has struck out 13.6% of right-handed batters and walked 11.3%. Against lefties, he has struck out 19.4% while walking just 4.2%

Relief pitchers tend to be dealt in July to teams looking for one more piece. Though Duensing’s name hasn’t been mentioned in rumors like some others (like Tony Sipp), his production this year could make him an option for some teams.

WHY TRADE HIM

Relief pitchers do get traded at the deadline, and often fetch more at that time than other times in the season. If Terry Ryan is fielding phone calls about Duensing and gets offered a couple of mid-level prospects, he would have to consider it.

The Twins do have other left-handers in the bullpen and more in the minor leagues. Glen Perkins isn’t going anywhere, and Caleb Thielbar has put up very solid numbers in his first two seasons in the big leagues. In Rochester, Edgar Ibarra is pitching well and is on the 40 man roster. Aaron Thompson is a former first-round pick who has pitched a little bit in the big leagues. He’s pitched well the last two seasons in Rochester. And don’t forget that many relief pitchers in the big leagues, including Duensing, were starters in the minor leagues. Logan Darnell and Kris Johnson could fit this role in time as well.

WHY KEEP HIM

He’s only making $2 million. As a left-handed reliever who doesn’t strike out a ton, he likely won’t ever make more than $3 million a season, maybe as early as next year in his final year of arbitration. He’s been good for a while now. That said, there are a lot of left-handed relievers that last a long time. The Twins could also sign him to a contract extension.

He is also one of the guys who has been with the organization a long time. Although he’s not the big name, he is a core guy in the bullpen and in the organization and in the Twins community.

WHO NEEDS HIM

The Braves are looking for a left-handed reliever, but there are always teams looking for lefties, and any bullpen improvement, for the pennant race.

SUMMARY

Brian Duensing has been very good in his role for the Minnesota Twins this season. He has a year of arbitration left before he becomes a free agent. Relievers often bring back good value at the trade deadline, so it is a move that must be considered.

YOUR TURN

What should the Twins do with Brian Duensing ? Trade him? Sign him to a two-year extension to buy out a year of free agency? Let him play out his contract and see what happens? What do you think?


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32 Comments

In terms of major league performance there is no urgency, but when considering the stewardship of team resources I believe the urgency is high.Duensing could be a prime non-tender candidate this off-season, so if you get nothing for him now, you may get nothing at all.

 

40-man issues plague this team and whatever is the best non-Rule-5-eligible prospect that can be obtained should be accepted ASAP.

Yeah I hear ya. Something is better than nothing.  I think it is just hard for me to comprehend that we would trade a player and likely get a lesser player in return and call that good. I get that the Twins likely would gain flexibility on the roster and some salary relief and they have players ready to step in but its just hard to see it that way.  Also I don't think we will get someone not on the other teams 40 man as they would likely have to DFA someone to add Duensing. If that is the case then what is the point?  It seems like clearing the 40 man for lower level prospects is not as easy as it seems.

The Pirates are looking for a left-handed relief pitcher. Let's make a deal.

 

https://twitter.com/...173015601840128

I am guessing the Twins are done trading players to the Pirates, forever.

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ashburyjohn
Jul 29 2014 12:56 PM

It seems like clearing the 40 man for lower level prospects is not as easy as it seems.

That's why I view it as a priority. :)

The Pirates are looking for a left-handed relief pitcher. Let's make a deal.

 

https://twitter.com/...173015601840128

 

Maybe we could get Vance Worley for him. (Oops)

 

There might be a long term strategy there. Twins acquire pitcher X, pitcher X fails. Pitcher X subsequently traded to the Pirates. Pittsburgh fixes pitcher X - Twins reacquire said pitcher.

 

I'm kidding, of course, but count me in favor of moving Duensing before the deadline, especially if the notion of DFA-ing at season's end is even on the table. Move him for value now, if possible.

I am guessing the Twins are done trading players to the Pirates, forever.

I know you are joking -- but I'm not sure I get it (or you are mis-remembering things).  Morneau is the only Twin I can recall who was dealt to the Pirates, and he didn't do anything for them.  Worley was sold.  Liriano signed there as a free agent.

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ChrisKnutson
Jul 29 2014 02:01 PM
The Pirates have two players that could be traded for Brian Duensing (just one would probably be dealt for Duensing) like Jose Tabata and Tony Sanchez. Tabata is definitely starter material and is very underrated in the pirates organization (only seen as a 4th outfielder) also he is only 26. Tony Sanchez is also a good player to have especially next year because we might not have Suzuki and will be left with only option starter and defensively troubled Pinto. Sanchez is also 26 and has fared well in the majors in his short stint with the Pirates at the beginning of the season. One of them could help the Twins this year, next year, and years to come.
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diehardtwinsfan
Jul 30 2014 01:33 PM

The Pirates have two players that could be traded for Brian Duensing (just one would probably be dealt for Duensing) like Jose Tabata and Tony Sanchez. Tabata is definitely starter material and is very underrated in the pirates organization (only seen as a 4th outfielder) also he is only 26. Tony Sanchez is also a good player to have especially next year because we might not have Suzuki and will be left with only option starter and defensively troubled Pinto. Sanchez is also 26 and has fared well in the majors in his short stint with the Pirates at the beginning of the season. One of them could help the Twins this year, next year, and years to come.

 

Tabata is barely above the mendoza line in Indianapolis.He might be stop gap, but for what it's worth, Alex Pressley outperformed him in the same envioronment


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