Wonderful read Nick. And what a realistic way of looking at the coming spring.
As you stated, three of the in house group are out of options (Deduno, Diamond and Worley...I believe Hendiks has one more option). If they do sign Pelfrey or someone else, I expect one of these three will be dealt in advance to open a spot on the 40-man roster. If not, they will let them battle it out for two spots in spring then trade one if one isn't on the DL.
But you hit it square on the head, they will have wonderful depth heading into spring training. And with Hendriks, Gibson, Meyer, May, Albers and Johnson all at Rochester, the Red Wings should have a legitimate chance to have a very good season. And I really like the prospects of having Gibson in Rochester ready to move up when a starter goes down.
Was it a lucky year or someone finally putting it together - a slow developer? That's an open question that is worthy of being explored.
Originally Posted by Badsmerf
If they're asking for anything other than B prospects and/or moderately above replacement level pieces for Hardy, they're putting on a very transparent bluff to see if there's a sucker in the room. The "Hardy problem", and what to do with him, has been omnipresent ever since the arrival of Machado. They aren't very likely to re-sign him and they want to put Hardy's dollars to good use to fill their other holes, now! There is no way anyone will be foolhardy enough to be held up for a King's Ransom like you describe for a one year rental of Hardy.
Originally Posted by gobirds
Wieters is going to cost the O's in arbitration the next 3 years, he's available right now for a reasonable exchange and some salary relief/
What I want to know is, is salary going to stand in the way of trying somebody different? I hate the idea that pitching 200 innings is somehow admirable, if your ERA is over 5. I'm looking at you, Correia.
"Twins Finally Assembling Starting Pitching Depth"
But is it good depth?
Disclaimer: if you really don't like ERA+ skip the rest!
Career era+ for a potential starting rotation:
Looks like a rotation of a lot of mediocre at best starters. It might be better than last year but that bar isn't set very high is it?
It's set high enough. The way a team improves is by getting better. We will be better next season.
Originally Posted by Winston Smith
Nice article, Nick. I appreciate how you compare/contrast the Opening Day options from 2013 to projections for 2014. You mention "that a group including Worley, Scott Diamond, Kyle Gibson, Andrew Albers, Hendriks and Alex Meyer could be left on the outside looking in."
I think that Anthony Swarzak has more upside for that 5th starter spot than Pelfrey, or the list above. Terry Ryan has told Swarzak to prepare to start, and his 2013 numbers are intriguing. Swarzak was very effective in long relief last year, posting a 2.91 ERA and a 1.15 WHIP over 96 innings.
Now, if the front office can keep him from channeling the spirit of recently departed Maurice "Mad Dog" Vachon over Twins Fest, he might have a decent offseason to stretch himself out.
Readers might recall how he cracked some ribs last January while horsing around with teammates. Like we say in the fire hall, "horseplay is the enemy of safety!" Maybe Swarzy and Kent "T-Rex" Hrbek can resurrect the AWA someday...
Until then, give Swarzy a shot in the starting rotation. Then maybe Worley, Hendricks, or Diamond can stay on the roster, while finding something out of the bullpen. Time, and Spring Training, will tell. Until then, Swarzy, stay out of the ring!
Wish I had the beat Writer's link that said, Orioles never have shopped JJ Hardy and when the Cardinals called, they said, he's not available.
Is Aaron Hicks doing anything this Winter? Dominican League?
I have hope for Hicks as a serviceable 2nd division regular and would play RF until the Twins would get a 1st division regular type of talent comes along or until/if Sano has to play OF (rocket for an arm, voted best arm at each level he's been at, not to mention that 80 grade power).
I just don't know how he's going to get everything back together between how he ended at AAA last year to Spring Training.
As one guy noted earlier, our offense is atrocious. As bad as our pitching was, our offense may have been as equally bad. And we struck out 3rd most in MLB HISTORY.
Sano will likely be given every opportunity to have the 3B job out of Spring training. If he kills it, he opens up with the big league club. If not, AA or AAA and once he shows plate discipline and hits .280 or higher, he'll be called up. I can't imagine a scenario where he isn't the every day 3B by end of July.
Buxton...if by July 2014 he's hitting .320+ and his strikeout rate is under 20% and his walk rate is still at that 12-15% at AA...he'll be called up too. And when he's called up, he'll be starting every day.
I think Meyer will be a regular by Mid July as well. Whether he starts the season with the big club or not, I don't know.
Don't sign Pelfrey, not even for $3M per.
I would like the Twins to find some more hitters who make contact. Things just happen when you put the ball in play. If you can't slug 30 HR or more, you can't be striking out 100+ times a year. The ONLY scenario I can see where you are not slugging 30+ HR and striking out 100+ a year is you're a GG at your position with .280 and 15+ HR.
Thoughts on Polanco, does he start AA? AAA? Santana? How long before either is given a shot at Florimon's job?
That is an unrealistic expectation. Today's MLB players strike out more. It's intentional, not accidental. Guys don't choke up and go for the opposite field single like they did in the 70s... And that's okay. Statistical analysis seems to back up that thinking.
Originally Posted by twinsfan34
Joe Mauer struck out 88 and 89 times in 2012 and 2013. Setting the bar at 100 K's is way too high (or low, depending on how you look at the phrase).
I had the same thoughts, JB. I like Deduno's enthusiasm and Nolasco's fire. And I hope Ryan takes a flier on someone (Santana?). I'm indifferent about Pelfry, except on the nights he pitches, when I'll pick up a book or something rather than suffer.
Originally Posted by JB_Iowa
The Twins only need an average rotation to have an above average pitching staff as the bullpen is pretty good.
Originally Posted by howieramone
so do we get a 5th starter? I dont see why not. Also dont forget Johnson. TR has said that he is a better Diamond so he probably has more potential. THe other question is will the offense improve enough with just the incomming internal improvements or should we go out and get 1 bat. More specifically will Doumit provide enough offense this year as he was terrible last year and doesn't look like a catcher going forward. and if he is not enough who do we get to replace him in the line up?
You're right, it's going to be a mediocre MLB rotation, and that's probably regardless of whatever additional FA moves Ryan makes, including Garza.
Originally Posted by Winston Smith
But really, what should we have expected? I'm frankly thrilled with a mediocre rotation for 2014 of Nolasco, Hughes, Deduno, Correia and say, Pelfry. But I'm even MORE thrilled that the injury replacements aren't a bunch of #7-8 starters like DeVries, Hernandez and Walters. Instead, we have a deep selection of #5-6 guys (or maybe much better) in Worley, Gibson, Diamond, Hendriks, Albers, Meyers, and maybe even May, Johnson, Wimmers, and Darnell. Not a very high ceiling for the big club, but a much more solid floor in 2014.
You can't really expect the Twins to have a high-caliber rotation next year. That kind of reversal was never realistic. The goal is to get some decent/average pitchers in place and hope that Gibson/Meyer etc. can step in and make a positive impact to take them to the next level. My problem was surrounding those kids with utter slop with little upside, and the Twins finally seem to to be moving away from that.
I wholeheartedly agree with giving Swarzak a full try in ST. He's earned it, and he could be the surprise of the staff.
Originally Posted by Don't Feed the Greed Guy
Originally Posted by birdwatcher
You and I have had a running conversation for 2 years now, Bird. This is all I've asked of TR since he came on board, and I'm similarly thrilled with the upgrades thus far......even if Ryan had to be dragged kicking and screaming to finally pull the trigger already.....makes me tend to think that all those "woe is me" crocodile tears and "Nobody wants to play in Minnesota" huffing was all just a maudlin facade.....
And still, I'm more than willing to forgive and forget, especially f TR continues at the major league level in acquring steak and potatoes talent over the frivolous froufrou he perpetrated on us the previous 2 offseasons.
It feels good to finally be on the same page with you, Bird.
With NPB's new regulations on the posting coming out, is it realistic for the Twins to make a serious move at signing Tanaka? If they would this be a long term deal as Tanaka is still fairly young? How much of an impact would you say he would have on the rotation?
The max posting bid has been set at 20 million, and there are two accounts floating around now as to how a tie breaker would work. First is that the team with the worst winning percentage would take priority, the second is that the player would decide.
I wouldn't mind a signing like Suk Yin Moon. Something risky, but potentially very rewarding is what we can afford to do with a somewhat consistent group of pitchers.
Bullpen for Worley and Diamond, Trade Hendriks. The rest can wait for injuries. I don't agree with Pelf but his last two months brings pause. Can we talk about a bat now.
I don't think anyone could expect a turnaround in one year. I just hope that the signings are enough to provide some significant improvement in the pitching staff. Maybe from last in mlb to 20th-24th. I'm not expecting miracles but I hope that the improvement attributable to free agents is enough to encourage the Twins to keep working all possibilities for improving this team.
Derek Wetmore did a pretty good job of putting Nolasco's signing in perspective vis a vis other AL Central teams: http://www.1500espn.com/sportswire/W...otations120313
I don't expect a one-year turnaround. I just felt like the 2012-2013 offseason was basically wasted.
Yup this is very realistic and fair. Ryan did all you could hope for. This also puts to rest a lot of silly justifications that were thrown around for last years failures. We at least have some stability now to bring up younger starters to complement. And, most importantly, Ryan has finally shown a penchant for opening up the payroll for significant signings. That's two huge wins right there.