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Damning article in the Washington Post re: Pressly / Anal...

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https://bleacherrepo...ur-written-test     I'd be intrigued to take it and see how I did, I'm sure I'm not alone. Thoughts?

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Reinforcements Needed in Relief

Posted by Ted Schwerzler , 24 April 2018 · 533 views

minnesota twins tyler duffey alan busenitz tyler kinley
After a drubbing to the New York Yankees in their first matchup since the Wild Card loss last season, the Minnesota Twins had some questions to be answered. Jake Odorizzi struggled, and the bullpen provided little in the form of relief. With position player Ryan LaMarre finishing out the game, Paul Molitor needed some reinforcements, but the question now is; where do they come from?

Leaving spring training, the Twins found themselves needing to juggle a bullpen to include Rule 5 pick Tyler Kinley. He looked promising with velocity out the wazoo, but in what we've seen thus far, little else has come with it. By including Kinley and Gabriel Moya (thanks to a timely Phil Hughes injury) on the 25 man roster, relief staple Tyler Duffey found himself making the trip to upstate New York. Since then, Alan Busenitz has also appeared out of the pen with the big club.

After the 13-run loss, and fourth straight defeat, the Twins optioned Busenitz back to the farm. He'd posted a 6.75 ERA across four innings of work, and while the seven strikeouts are nice, the eight hits are far too many. Moya had been jettisoned previously, as he owned a 10.80 ERA across just 5.0 IP. Giving up three longballs in his brief work thus far, a tweak has to be made as he's now allowed five in just 11.1 IP at the major league level. Kinley is still being held onto after being invested in as a Rule 5 player, but the 24.30 ERA across 3.1 IP simply is unacceptable.

To a certain extent, the problem for Minnesota lies in what moves they've already made. Getting Duffey back to the big league level is a good move. He's posted a 0.00 ERA across 11 IP at Triple-A, and owns a 14/1 K/BB. Behind him though, the options for Molitor and the front office are a lot of the names we've already seen. Busenitz and Moya both look like capable big league relievers to me, but neither has shown they are there right now. John Curtiss could be the next man up from Rochester, but he too would need to get off on the right foot. Outside of those names, there isn't another relief arm on the 40 man roster.

At Triple-A Rochester, Jake Reed (who's currently on the DL), D.J. Baxendale, and Mason Melotakis are all names of intrigue. Of them, Reed probably has the most upside. None of those three are any sort of a sure thing however, and dipping down a level lower would be asking someone to make a big jump for the Twins. There is the option to ask a starter like Fernando Romero to work out of the pen, but unless he's used semi-regularly, that could be at a detriment to his development.

What this all boils down to is Paul Molitor needing more from the guys currently expected to bolster his pitching staff. Both Odorizzi and Lance Lynn need to be better out of the rotation. When entering from relief, it's been Addison Reed, Ryan Pressly, or bust. Trevor Hildenberger has to return to 2017 form, and Taylor Rogers desperately needs to string together a few strong outings. There isn't a golden ticket waiting to happen, and the cream really needs to rise to the top.

It's absolutely fair to note that the Twins have pitching depth, and it's also fair to suggest that there's a relative quality about it. That being said, the early season returns have been underwhelming, and the group as a whole must do some soul-searching to find out what more each individual can offer.

For more from Off The Baggy, click here. Follow @tlschwerz




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tarheeltwinsfan
Apr 24 2018 09:01 AM

Just for argument's sake, will someone please put forth the best argument that can be made for keeping Kinley on the 25 man roster.I tried, but just can't figure this out.

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Ted Schwerzler
Apr 24 2018 09:06 AM

 

Just for argument's sake, will someone please put forth the best argument that can be made for keeping Kinley on the 25 man roster.I tried, but just can't figure this out.

Literally the only argument is that the opportunity cost of adding him has cost them Chargois, Bard, and Burdi in some form or fashion (even though not directly). Outside of that, there isn't one.

    • DocBauer and Platoon like this
Front office saving face
    • Platoon likes this
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MaxOelerking
Apr 24 2018 02:03 PM

 

Just for argument's sake, will someone please put forth the best argument that can be made for keeping Kinley on the 25 man roster.I tried, but just can't figure this out.

Upper echelon for spin rate on his slider *crickets*

95 mph fastball *crickets*

 

The only reasonable explanation is that he's only pitched in 3.1 innings so far and they want a larger sample size. If they let Morrison start as often as they do I don't see why they would pull the plug on Kinley this early. Not saying its right or wrong but that is probably their thought process.

 

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Ted Schwerzler
Apr 24 2018 02:09 PM

 

Upper echelon for spin rate on his slider *crickets*

95 mph fastball *crickets*

 

The only reasonable explanation is that he's only pitched in 3.1 innings so far and they want a larger sample size. If they let Morrison start as often as they do I don't see why they would pull the plug on Kinley this early. Not saying its right or wrong but that is probably their thought process.

Those reasons are why they invested in Kinley in the first place. Absolutely they don't go unnoticed, but the performance also can't go ignored on a team with postseason aspirations. Carrying a Rule 5 guy is one thing, but when he's used solely as a mop up arm and isn't capable of that, further evaluation of the process comes into play.

    • Danchat likes this
It's simply time, early in the year and SSS or not, to cut Kinley, (who may or not be taken back by Miami), or work out a deal to keep him. But he needs to be off the roster at this point.

I like Hilgenberger a lot and think he's for real, despite poor early season results. I agree Moya and Busentiz each show promise. But to be "Doc Obvious" and agree with you, they simply haven't pitched up to snuff yet. Rogers has proven himself in the past, so I'm not going to give up on him. Reed and Curtiss also have being arms, but, see above.

All damn frustrating! But there is some potential there. And I still feel like the weather has done the Twins no favors with missed games, days off, such a weird start to the milb season, etc. I'm not going to panic or get worked up at this point. Now, in another week, two at most, if we're still seeing what we are seeing, then I will become very concerned.

Remember too, this time last year Pressly and Belisle looked like toast.

It would be nice if one of the young relievers could come up and pitch well, but we're just not getting that. Hildy's struggling after he did that last year and Moya & Busenitz both had opportunities to show they belonged and couldn't do it.

The twins also have to make decisions on Mehia, Enns and Slegers. Sure, it is "nice" to have starting depth, but can they pitch relief, or even long-relief. AT this pont I would rather see one of them at the backend that Kinley (sad to say).

 

Enns is a question. Not doing great, but has possbilities...or if he doesn't, cut him loose. I'm sure the whole "value" thing is in play, and the Twins want to bring him up to see if he can produce at the major eaegue level because of the minor trade value they did. But at some point, if they guys aren't usable, you replace them with guys that are.

 

Or figure out how to use them. Use Duke for one or two batters. But Rodney in setup or mopup until you are comfortable with him back in as closer. Pressly is doing better than Rodney, so is Reed. They both should be getting the ball if the Twins ever have another save situation.

 

Yes, it is too early to panic, and the Twins can run thru Busenitz again and bring up Moya and use Curtis. But at some point, these names will be judged against Anderson and Reed and Melotakis and others, too.

 

If the Twins are a competitive team, that is!