I might be more bullish on Mastroianni than most but I was actually looking forward to seeing Darin play everyday. Worst case scenario he regresses and Hicks gets the call after June 1, thus saving a year of team control. Best case scenario, the emergence of Mastroianni makes Willingham and Doumit that much more expendable and also enhances his own trade value.
I just don't see the rush in promoting Hicks. We've got a superb core of 2014 players that could all hit the majors at exactly the same time. In the mean time, sign Drew, Marcum, and Brett Myers and we should be set.
If they all come up in 2014, they are all rookies together, with little experience. I do not see the point in not having your best players in the majors. How did keeping trout in the minors work out for LA last year? Try to win, see if you get lucky.
Hmm, so many points to consider. Arbitration eligibility--penny wise and pound foolish--and sends a message to all draftees that if they sign with MN they will get screwed irrespective of how well they perform. Somebody will remember that when the Twins draft oh so early for the next several years--and refuse to sign!
Only one CF. Yes that would be a problem. Though I'm confident that concern was addressed when both Span and Revere were shopped.
Benson? Back in '07 the Twins refused to give Span a september callup because they deemed his AAA season (~.264 BAVG) wasn't worthy of a callup and further was deemed he "just wasn't plain good enough for the MLs", hence the insistence on a CF in the Santana trade. Then the sham "competition" for the CF job in ST '08. To sum up, given Span's '07 season and what happened it is incredible to me that the Twins can overlook Benson's wretched ML experience in '11 and his entire '12 season and place him on the Active Roster out of ST '13.
I see two scenarios: a)Hicks becomes the starting CF out of ST and Mastroianni is the 4th OF or b)Mastroiannis is the starting CF, Hicks gets sent to Rochester, and a "Jason Repko"-type player (maybe even him!) is signed to be the 4th OF. I think a) is better unless the Twins are convinced Masroianni will succeed to the same level as Revere--so they can trade Mastroianni in W '13 and receive a return similar to the Revere trade! Then its Hicks' job.
Other than Hendriks, none of the other pitchers the Twins rolled out there were considered to be prospects. "Best" starters is relative considering the dearth of starting pitching depth. If the Twins dipped down to AA or even High-A last year for starters the results couldn't have been much worse.
If the Twins play Hicks up in the media as a spectacular athlete and one of their best prospects, who was basically the reason they felt comfortable trading both Span and Revere (which is all true), I don't think they'd have a hard time building excitement around him. No casual fans knew who Gomez was when the team acquired him and he became extremely popular in '08 despite posting lousy numbers. People like coming out to the park and watching young, athletic players with legitimate promise.Quote:
Originally Posted by LaBombo
This comparison is just... wow. You realize that Hicks was rated as a top 20 prospect in baseball a couple years ago, right?Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex
I do not know if he is the best. My point is that if he is, he should be up.
Fair enough., and I agree it was extreme, but I was referring the idea of what "best player in the organization" means especially in reference to major league ready (IE just because he might be the best CF prospect they have doesn't mean he's MLB ready). Prospect ranking is nice, but I'd like to see more evidence, personally.
I'd just like to be convinced that he's ready by more than one season in AA. It's way too much like the Dozier argument (and no he wasn't a top prospect either) to me, but calling guys up from AA hasn't worked well for the Twins. Edit: A lot of people said the same thing about Benson after he played well in AA.
There are legitimate concerns about Hicks. He has advanced reasonably well through the minors but has been slow to acclimate at each step. While it is encouraging that he is growing and making adaptations, that is not the profile of a player I would want to aggressively push through the system.
Maybe someone can explain why there are 72 comments but suddenly I can read only one? I had the issue earlier today but later it appeared to be fixed.
You mention that the Twins haven't had success calling guys up directly from Double-A, but really they haven't had much success recently calling up players from anywhere. They just haven't developed a lot of good hitters lately. Guys are generally going to take a while to adjust to big-league competition regardless of which level they come from (see Plouffe, who had played 3 years in Triple-A and still struggled mightily as a rook).
But the best way to learn to hit major-league pitching is to face major-league pitching. As much as people crap on the team's decision to bring Parmelee up directly from Double-A, who's to say his immense success at Rochester wasn't related to that experience? Either you hack it in the bigs, or you figure out what you need to work on, and that -- to me -- is the purpose of Triple-A.
I just think all prospects are different and need to be handled on an individual basis. No one knows whether or not Aaron Hicks is big-league ready than the Twins brass, and because of the whole human factor, no one really knows.
If they go with Hicks, I will be really excited as I think he's got a chance to be a very solid major leaguer, maybe even play in a couple of All Star games. If they go with Mastroianni, I'll certainly understand that too. If they go with Benson, I will also be excited because it wasn't long ago (9-10 months ago), that we (many) had him ranked higher than we rank Hicks now and I for one would love to see him reach his immense potential. It's a no-lose situation really.
On waiting until super 2 passes...
The new CBA changed the threshold and the date will be later than June 1. Mid market teams like the Twins should not concern themselves with a player getting to arbitration a year early. If they perform to the point where they become expensive. Be thankful and pay them. The Twins can afford it.
On calling him up too early...
Yes, he will struggle. If he doesn't have the character and confidence to handle it and improve, he will never be a long term major league starter no matter how long they wait. This isn't like bringing up a kid right out of the draft. If Benson's poor performance last year was related to struggles in his brief September call up, he will never make it in the major leagues. I don't believe they were related.