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After a 12 inning game and the White Sox using a bullpen game, it looked like the Twins’ offense would have some fun at the plate tonight...

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The Minnesota Twins have one of the greatest offensive teams ever assembled (put that into sentences that would’ve seemed crazy in March)...

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  Good afternoon and welcome back to another exciting game thread! After last nights win I'd prefer this game just go a standard 9...

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As the month of July came to an end, Minnesota Twins fans watched with anticipation hoping that their club was going to make the necessar...

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Maybe you got carried away with Tsuyoshi Nishioka. Maybe you (okay, me) were a little too excited about Jeff Cirillo. Maybe you bought a...

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All-Star Break Thoughts

Posted by stringer bell , 12 July 2016 · 1,440 views

lineup power rotation bullpen trades
At the All-Star break, the Twins sit with a terrible 32-56 record and it is only that good because they've won the last three series against three AL West clubs. For most of the season, the Twins have scored the fewest runs in the AL while allowing the most. I wasn't totally surprised that the Twins pitching staff was bad, but it just doesn't seem right that they would be last in runs scored justifiably because they weren't getting on base and not hitting when they did manage to get runners in scoring position.

With good work of late from their offense, the Twins have improved in offensive categories. They rank 10th in runs scored, 8th in OPS and slugging, 9th in OBP and 10th in homers. I would expect those numbers to continue to rise. There's plenty of talent and a lot of them are starting to realize their potential.

Certainly, the pitching needs to improve, both the rotation and the back end of the bullpen. However, some guys have stepped up. Fernando Abad was brilliant for the first quarter of the season, but has faded. Brandon Kinzler was signed to a minor league contract, but recalled this spring and has been pretty good. Taylor Rogers looks like he belongs in the bullpen and Ryan Pressly and Michael Tonkin have shown enough to hold spots in the Twins bullpen.

There is enough offense to be a good team soon. There isn't enough pitching. The Twins don't have an ace and their most consistent veteran is supposedly on the block. I am of the opinion that every trade made by the Twins from now until they are a true contender has to bring back pitching or catching. It is my belief that the Twins will be good again when their staff is better than average. I'm willing to bet the members of that staff will be homegrown or acquired in minor deals or the Rule V Draft. Signing free agent pitchers is like going against the house in Vegas. You might win once in a while, but long term the house always wins. Ryan has attempted to sign pitchers to eight figure (per year) contracts and it hasn't worked out.

I expect the Twins to be more competitive in the second half of the season. I sincerely hope they trade a couple of veterans to allow the kids to play. Chargois and Berrios can cut their teeth in the major leagues. Some of Suzuki, Plouffe, Nuñez, Santana, Nolasco, and Abad should be sold off. I really don't think they are that far away, if they can get middle of the pack pitching.

The other factor, which I think is overlooked in the Twins demise this year is defense. The pitching staff has enough trouble getting three outs in an inning and too often, because of misplays, a fourth or fifth out has been donated to the opponent. If the Twins get a new catcher or catching tandem, I would hope they get a solid defender who can limit opponent's running game. Also, another glaring deficiency has been shortstop. Eduardo Nuñez is below average as a shortstop and Eduardo Escobar has had a poor year playing short IMHO. A trade of Nuñez would probably net better defense at short




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HitInAPinch
Jul 14 2016 05:08 AM

I question Ryan Pressly.He has probably the longest delivery by a relief pitcher I've ever seen.He has problems repeating it consistently.

 

And I think we know why the starting staff has stunk:the veterans the Twins signed [to give MiLB starters time to mature] were bottom of the basement signings, in terms of talent.No other starter wanted to sign with the Twins.