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2014 Minnesota Twins Offseason Blueprint

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There are plenty of ways to go about trying to fix the Twins team but some patience might be required as the club waits for some younger pieces to work their way through the minor leagues. The Twins Daily crew put out some solid information in the 2014 Offseason Handbook. One of the best parts to read about this document is the blueprint plans put together by the writers.

There are plenty of options for the Twins but here is how I would go about trying to fix the team. Some of these ideas will happen and some won't but that's what makes this fun.

Starting Line-Up
C- Josmil Pinto- $0.5 million
1B- Joe Mauer- $23 million
2B- Brian Dozier- $0.5 million
3B- Miguel Sano- $0.5 million
SS- Pedro Florimon- $0.5 million
LF- Oswaldo Arcia- $0.5 million
CF- Aaron Hicks- $0.5 million
RF- Trevor Plouffe- $2.0 million
DH- Josh Willingham- $7 million
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$35.0 million committed to nine hitters

Breakdown: Sano has an impressive spring with the major league club and earns the starting third base job. Mauer's concussion concerns are enough to make him spend more time at first base than catcher for the first time in his career. He could get some playing time behind the plate but the Twins need to protect their most important asset. Willingham's injury concerns last season make it much easier to move him to full-time DH to take some of the wear and tear off of his legs. The outfield can be a little shaky with a couple of young players. Hicks has the entire offseason to toil over his terrible 2013. This should give him the drive to earn back his starting job in center field. Plouffe has to shift to right field with the emergence of Sano.

Bench
C- Ryan Doumit-$3.5 million
IF- Eduardo Escobar- $0.5 million
1B/OF- Chris Parmelee- $0.5 million
OF- Darin Mastroianni- $0.5 million
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$5.0 million committed to four bench positions

Breakdown: Parmelee and Mastroianni will likely get at-bats at first base and in the outfield so they will be semi-regular players. It could be a make it or break it year for Parmelee with some young prospects making their way towards Target Field. It would be nice to add some veteran catching depth but I think the Twins will use Pinto, Doumit, and a sprinkling of Mauer behind the plate. Escobar is a nice piece to have and he has the ability to fill-in at multiple positions.

Starting Pitching
1. Josh Johnson- $7 million
2. Phil Hughes- $8 million
3. Kevin Correia- $5.5 million
4. Kyle Gibson- $0.5 million
5. Johan Santana- $1.0 million (+ incentives)
Johan insurance: Scott Diamond, Vance Worley, and/or Sam Deduno ($0.5 million each)
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$22.0 million committed to top five/ $23.5 million with Johan insurance

Breakdown: Target Field would be a perfect place for Johnson to rebuild some value on a short-term deal. Hughes signed as part of a two-year, $16 million deal to earn his place as a top of the rotation arm. Correia and Gibson can fit nicely in the middle part of the rotation with less pressure to perform as top of the rotation guys. Does it make sense to sign a guy like Santana coming off his second shoulder surgery? Probably not but it would still be fun to see him back in a Twins uniform. Also, the team has other guys that could fit into the fifth spot if Johan doesn't work out.

Bullpen
Righties: Jared Burton, Casey Fien, Anthony Swarzak, Michael Tonkin- $5.5 million
Lefties: Caleb Thielbar, Brian Duensing- $2.5 million
Closer: Glen Perkins- $3.75 million
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$11.75 million committed to seven relievers

Breakdown: The bullpen was the best part of the 2013 team so there is no reason to make any drastic changes. It could make sense for the club to non-tender Duensing but the team might like having another lefty to go along with Thielbar. Tonkin has a chance to turn into a late-inning pitcher of the future but the Twins can rely on Burton and Perkins for the time being. If Minnesota can get any trade value for one of their veteran righties, the team could let Duke Welker take over a bullpen spot.

Minnesota Twins 2014 Checkbook
Starting Line-Up: $35.0 million
Bench Players: $5.0 million
Starting Pitching: $22.0 million
Bullpen: $11.75 million
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$73.75 million committed to Opening Day 25-man roster

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