Thanks for this.
What sets him apart (or at least gives me more hope for him) in my mind is his age. The kid is 23. Let's say he recovers from the injury responsible for his poor performance last year-- to me, they could have a very effective back end of the rotation option. Unfortunately we have several of those. Still, nice to get ANY kind of return on a trade where the Braves ate the contract of maybe the worst pitch framer in MLB history
The shakedown as I would do it:
Duensing might bring Doumitesque value back, so I would look to trade him. Logan Darnell could be a perfect add-in to such a trade.
The Twins, for some reason, through money at Pelfrey. He is not good. It's an abomination. Anyway, the options really seem to hinge around Gibson, Diamond, Worley, and Deduno for the fifth starter and hopefully the long relief role (move Swarzak to middle relief, please). I would bet that Gibson starts in AAA, Diamond is the fifth starter, and Worley begins in long relief, with Deduno placed on the DL somehow. I think all four are likely better than Pelfrey in 2014, but oh well. If the Twins can try to trade from the bullpen, Diamond or Worley might find MR spots (trade Duensing, Fien, and Burton).
The rotation could be:
and the bullpen:
Fien/Burton (whichever one doesn't get traded)
Nice article. I think the Twins did ok with this trade.
Albers won't be moved, but his best chance to make the Twins roster is as a long reliever. Which makes some sense. There might not be any left handed starters, Swarzak might get more meaningful innings, Pressey could start the year in AAA, so there might be an opening for a left handed long reliever who could swing to starter in an emergency. A lot depends on how many relievers the Twins decide to carry in 2014, and whether any get traded this winter.
Well done, Thrylos. You make a good case for this being a smart contract for the Twins.
It doesn't feel right saying it (at least not this close to our disastrous 2013 year) but these free agent signings have me feeling cautiously optimistic for 2014. If - BIG if - everything falls in to place we should have our best SP depth since the 2004 season. That won't make up for an anemic offense but it is realistic to expect an improvement of 5-10 wins next year.
I didn't need more convincing. I was mad last year when it was just a one year deal. If anything I was surprised that we got 150 innings from him last year.
If he were to develop an effective changeup and throw more sliders, then he is a TOP of the rotation guy. Basically the fulfillment of his projection as a prospect. I still think that if we have other guys that pitch their way into the rotation, Pelfrey is a candidate to be lights out coming out of the pen with just the two main pitches (same with Hughes)
As far as free agent position players, the only places I can see adding would be at catcher or shortstop. And in both cases I don't love the available options. Even if Drew considers the Twins an option (doubt it) I think we would really have to overpay (on top of losing a pick).
If we aren't sticking with what we have, I would prefer to shift a top prospect with a AAAA (parms/worley) guy for a younger shortstop with a better contract than to overpay aging and injury prone Drew for a few seasons, and still lose a prospect.
When it was first hinted at that he Twins and Pelf were in negotiations before the Twins signed any other pitchers, I said I would be ok with Pelf resigning if he were signed as the back end of a good rotation rather than the centerpiece of a crap rotation.
Its a mixed bag, but generally this rotation (big stretch) should be much better. I'm mostly ok with Pelf. He could surprise me.
My top 5 reasons for resigning Mike
5. If he fails as a starter , we can use him as a big foot mascote
4. Dominos can have a new add for when Pelfrey starts, 30 pitches or less quarentee
3. We can trade him to the wolves as a small foward
2.If we didnt sign him , Jim would have kept the money
1.It came down to Mike or Boof, But Boof wanted a 5 year deal
Agreed about this being the first time that Ryan took actual risks. I suspect that despite what Pohlad is saying pubicly, Ryan might got a gun on his head to win or else this season (and he should with these horrible seasons they have had.)
Agreed about position players as well. I think that they will get a back up catcher and maybe another bat or two, but they need to fix the corner OF defense (i.e. Willingham at DH or gone, Doumit gone, Colabello gone, Mastroianni gone with Presley as the 4th OF/PR type and Parmelee fighting Kubel for the LH DH job) But they need to clean a lot of the AAAA guys out of there as well and I hope that this will start to happen after the holidays...
I eventually see Plouffe moving to an OF position and being at least as good with the glove as Cuddyer was when Sano gets up for good.
Thanks for the analysis.
For me this all comes down to the Twins signing 3 pitchers with potentially higher up-sides than they've signed in the past. Will all 3 work out? I have no idea. Would it be a disaster if one of the three didn't? No. Obviously it will hurt more financially if Nolasco or Hughes fails than if Pelfrey fails but the failure of any one of them wouldn't kill this team financially (they are still at 2013 levels and haven't spent any of the new TV money OR moved back to what we believe was 50%-52% of revenues even without the TV money).
In the long run, this is part of what I was hoping for from the Twins. That Terry Ryan would show that he was willing to risk a little more to get some guys who might have a higher payoff rather than always just dumpster divining.
I see this as a step -- not a leap but a nice step in moving to being a successful mid-market team. And someday I hope that success with these smaller steps may pay off in a willingness to take a leap in the free agent market or in buying out arbitration years, etc.
I'd also like to see some additional action on position players either through FA or trade. I hope TR's phone is working hard.
I'm a believer and like the risk vs reward for the Twins. Most seem to think he will not improve much and obviously other teams had there concerns so they could be right. I just feel optimistic that he is going to pitch well this year.
Fun comments. Here are some replies:
- I have seen Santana play this season several times. I think that his ceiling is a utility player in the majors, thus the ranking. I am pretty certain that Polanco will be given every opportunity to make it at SS and he can make it
- Ibarra? Career FIP 4+ in the minors does not a top 40 prospect make, regardless of inclusion on the 40-man roster.
- I still have not bought in on Thorpe (or Sulbaran who is absent from this list) hype. I want to see more.
- Romero dominated AA last season (.355/.429/.710). He has been putting close to .800 OPS every season the last 3 in AA and AAA and his isoP has been more than .155 each of those seasons.
- There is no comparison between DJ Hicks and Kennys Vargas. Vargas is much further along and has much more raw power. People might drool about Sano's power, but people who actually watched them both in Fort Myers, know that Vargas has more power than Sano. Vargas is 4 months younger than Hicks, is a switch hitter, and in his half season in Beloit (2012) hit .318/.419/.610 (that's close to .300 isoP) while Hicks hit .297/.355/.494 in his half season in Cedar Rapids (2013). I like Hicks a lot, but he is not close to Vargas who might actually be MLB ready in 2015. There is a projection out there that has him hitting .233/.292/.421 24 HRs as a major leaguer now. Those are Plouffe/Willingham numbers.
Originally Posted by Thrylos
This is a very deep system. 16-18 would be top 10 in most systems.
Pretty much everyone ranked higher than Walker is a better prospect as far as I am concerned right now. He is a power guy, but .319 OBP in A after .316 OPB in E-town drags him down. Again, 17th is not that bad in this system.
Walker at 17th is bad in any system. You put a "TOPPS" League MVP at 17th. He was clearly the best thing in Cedar Rapids after Buxton last year. How often have you actually watched this kid play? Still hard to justify these choices in my mind.
Kepler: .254 BABIP / .312 OBP / .424 SLG% / 16% K Rate
Harrison: .316 BABIP / .366 OBP / .416 SLG% / 23% K Rate
Walker: .304 BABIP / .319 OBP / .526 SLG% / 20% K Rate
With these guys being roughly 1 year apart in age - What makes Walker's flaws that much more glaring?
I could definitely debate a lot of these, but the one I am going to bring up is Gonsalves at 10 and Thorpe at 18. I like Gonsalves quite a bit, probably top 15, but at this point they've got very similar repertoires, and Thorpe has shown a much better ability to control it. Gonsalves got a touch of experience at a slightly higher level, but is also a year older, and has less of a track record in pro ball right now.
Danny Santana - 30? After the season, I got really high on him. I have soured a bit as I think about his weaknesses, but 30 seems low. He needs to be better at getting onbase and way too many SO, but his bat looks capable as shown by a .297/ .333 /.386 and has +SS tools if he can put it together.
He looks to be the best internal hope for SS competency in the next 2 - 3 seasons and I expect him to be on the MLB team sometime this year - barring injury
I would've put Eades in Santana's spot - (way too many unknowns about Easdes right now to be 11th in a system like this) and put Santana somewhere around 15 or so.
But fun list, thanks for sharing.
You have a fun list. Exact rankings probably don't matter, and I haven't seen any of these guys play like you have, but Vargas seems pretty high. I would think him and D. J. Hicks are about the same till they get to AA. I expect at least one of them will have a lot of trouble with advanced pitching. I like Polanco too, but I wonder if he really will end up at short. It sounds like both Santana and Goodrum have better shortstop tools. It is just wether either can develop them and hit enough.
I like the fact you have different young pitchers than others that do these lists. I consider that a good thing. If the Twins really have that many young pitchers that merit some consideration, well maybe some them will develop into something good. It is a lot better than a few years ago when the only young pitcher getting much steam was Salcedo.(other than high draft choices)
Thanks for your list. I still don't think Deb Romero belongs, he has never dominated any level and even at AAA now, the numbers are not that good. I don't see another Casey Blake here. And yes, I am ribbing you a bit.
Next year is Jorge's age 20 season
I've only seen reports on the FB at 91-93 or 92-94, touching higher. Never saw a 98 thrown out there. That would be awesome.
Full disclosure: I have not seen Eades pitch yet. What I like about him:
- plus to plus plus 95 mph FB that gets up to 98 and 3 average to above average secondary pitches.
- very durable starter in College.
- mid rotation projection as is.
At this point, right after he was drafted, he is probably better than what Wimmers was and close to what Gibson was when he was drafted. If he develops one more out pitch, watch out. I could have potentially ranked him even higher, but I got to see him (and the other players in his draft class) play a bit.