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Fanatic Jack

Ryan Needs to be Held Accountable

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I have been smiling from ear to ear since the Twins announced Terry Ryan was coming back as the general manager to replace Bill Smith. I believe it will take Ryan four years to rebuild this organization into an A.L. Central powerhouse like he did a decade ago. Smith is an affable guy but clearly was in over his head as the GM of the Twins. He decimated the depth of the team with some very bad trades. I really like the additions of Carroll, Doumit, and Willingham to provide more offense to a club that struggled to score runs in 2011. There is no doubt Ryan took the moneyball approach when he evaluated these players because all three of them get on base at a very high clip. He also let aging veterans like Nathan, Cuddyer,and Kubel leave as free agents by refusing to give them new contracts.

The trouble with Ryan is he forgot to improve the pitching staff! The pitching staff had a 4.58 team ERA and ranked 29th out of 30 teams in MLB. The starting rotation is questionable even if everybody stays healthy and the bullpen has more holes than last season. This philosophy players will come out of nowhere to step up is a very dangerous proposition. There is no doubt Ryan is under tight budget restraints by the front office to keep player payroll at or around $100 million. However, he wasted $3 million on starting pitcher Jason Marquis and spent $400.000 on the often injured reliever Joel Zumaya. He was unable to make it through two days of spring training before he tore his UCL. Meanwhile, Ryan passed on dependable relief pitchers like Wheeler, Coffey, and Linebrook and they will all chew up more innings in the bullpen than Zumaya. Whats most surprising is Zumaya is still on the 40-man roster and they agreed to pay for his T.J surgery with Dr. Andrews. There is no question Ryan needs to be held accountable for not upgrading the pitching staff if the Twins go into another tailspin like 2011

Updated 03-07-2012 at 03:56 PM by Fanatic Jack

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  1. Thrylos's Avatar
    Here is the thing (and, as you very well know, I am less of a Terry Ryan fan than you are ) :

    I agree. Everyone in this organization should be held accountable, but to hold someone accountable you have to see results. If this season is another losing season, then Ryan cannot be held accountable (and Gardy and others). But you cannot hold someone accountable for projected or imaginary results. Let's see the results and then we can start pointing fingers (if you are into pointing out fingers.)
  2. Fanatic Jack's Avatar
    No doubt Ryan inherited a mess but to not upgrade the pitching staff with at least one quality pitcher is flat out nave. He is very smart and has to know that Marquis does not help the club at all. The bullpen was the worst in MLB last season and their best reliever (Nathan) is gone. Signing Zumaya after his injury history is like playing the lottery. People called me negative when I predicted he would not make it through spring training. So now they need two guys to step up instead of one. Jared Burton has been a surprise, and Bulger and Burnett disappointments.
  3. TwinsGuy55422's Avatar
    I tend to agree that we didn't do enough to address the pitching staff, but I am willing to see how things play out before passing judgment. I am intrigued by guys like Doyle, Gutierrez, Oliveros, Hendriks, etc. and am hoping that some of these guys can take the next step.
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