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J-Dog Dungan

List of pitchers that others rank in front of Frankie is shrinking

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With all the turmoil currently surrounding whether or not pieces that have been on the Twins for many years will be moved, the one piece everybody seems to say has an almost 100% chance of being moved is Francisco Liriano.

While Frankie has been a head case for a large part of the season, his raw stuff is enough to make any scout drool over him. However, this has not been the Frankie that has shown up to pitch with the Twins over the last year+.

So the question is: "Who will be traded that has a higher value than Frankie?" Several big names, including Anibal Sanchez and Wandy R. have already been moved to new teams. Cole Hamels and Cliff Lee, who the Phillies had apparently open for calls on, are staying with the Phillies, at least for now. King Felix is staying with the Mariners, and Ryan Dempster is insistent that if he is traded, he will be traded only to the LA Dodgers. So I believe that leaves us with three "high-tier" (relative term) left on the market: Frankie, Josh J. and Greinke (of course, if I am missing anyone, feel free to let me know). So the market for these guys is fairly wide open.

Greinke has been connected to many teams including the Orioles and Indians (but neither team is really looking for a rent-a-pitcher), White Sox, Rangers, Angels, and Braves.

The Marlins have said that they would trade only one of Anibal Sanchez and Josh Johnson, so it is believed that it would take a huge offer to pry him away from the Marlins. However, Johnson has been connected to the Blue Jays, Rangers, Angels, Orioles, and Dodgers are the ones most interested in him.

And then there is Frankie. He has been a head case for so long, and people have been crying out for the Twins to trade him ever since 2009, I think. The teams that have checked in on him (or more than that, maybe (hopefully)) includes the Angels, Orioles, Red Sox, Yankees, Mets, Blue Jays, and Braves. The Blue Jays, Mets, and Red Sox are fairly far out in their divisions, but I suppose are close enough in the Wild Card that they could try and swing a trade for a pitcher like Liriano. The Angels and Orioles are the ones that appear to have the best shot at landing Liriano, and former Twin Torii Hunter said almost as much and that he would be happy to be on the same team as him again.

The Twins, unfortunately, might have to lower their asking price for Liriano if they really want to deal him, especially with the inconsistency he has showed this year. But according to my calculations, he is one of the three best starters (gauged in pure, raw talent, not in number production) left on the market, and the Twins will most certainly use that to their advantage.

P.S. While researching for this blog, found that if the season ended today, the Oakland A's would take the second of two Wild Card spots in the A.L. This has got to be the closest they have been to the playoffs since they took out the Twins in 2006.
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  1. John Bonnes's Avatar
    James Shields. I don't think you mentioned James Shields.

    That throw-in of the A's at the bottom was interesting. I can see Billy Beane getting aggressive and going for Frankie, especially if he thinks the rest of the market is afraid of him. They might be worth a team profile story.
  2. J-Dog Dungan's Avatar
    I knew I forgot one.

    If Billy Beane is still anything like what he was in Moneyball, it would be an interesting conversation with him and Terry Ryan.
  3. mike wants wins's Avatar
    So are the teams that want to trade something legit for a pitcher....
  4. J-Dog Dungan's Avatar
    And this has shrunk; According to MLBTR, the Angels have traded for Greinke. This really seems to leave Shields, Dempster (because it seems like his deal with the Dodgers ain't goin to get done), Josh Johnson, and Frankie as the top pitchers on the market. Also, it takes away a team that was supposedly really interested in acquiring Liriano.
  5. J-Dog Dungan's Avatar
    Shields has intimated that he would really, really, really prefer to stay with the Rays and really doesn't want to get traded. So that leaves Dempster, Josh Johnson, and Liriano. I am also reading on several sites that the Twins are in active talks with the Cardinals for Liriano. I am hoping this means that a deal will materialize soon, because if it doesn't, then Liriano gets to pitch one last time for the Twins tomorrow night.
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