I'm back and forth on Garza for many of the reasons listed here. We have the money but next year is very interesting. Lester, Bailey, Scherzer, Masterson are all scheduled to be free agents.
I probably like them all more than Garza, problem is they're likely going to cost more plus a draft pick or prospects if we trade for them and good prospects not getting them for parmelee and plouffe, sorry. I'm betting Lester and Scherzer sign extensions soon. Just a guess with the Tigers clearing cash and the BoSox losing Salty and Ellsbury they have money to burn. If Bailey stays with Reds he could end up being closer to 25 million a year than the 15 it would require to sign Garza. Masterson might be nice but again, it's a long time between now and free agency 2014.
I guess if Garza is willing to sign for very similar to what we gave Nolasco, 4 years, plus option at a slightly higher AAV ( like 4/56 or 4/60) then I would be all over it. That's 34 million committed to 3 pitchers per year, not too bad to get 60% of your rotation for 35% of your payroll . Considering the youth coming up, it seems like a decent gamble as they'll all be nearing the end of their deals before our prospects hit arbitration. Worst case is you trade one of them or if Hughes starts to suck you move him to the bullpen to open up a spot.
I assume at least one of the nine mentioned above starts the year on DL just law of averages stuff, etc. Then we can at least give an extended look at one more of Worley/Diamond/Deduno. If we sign Garza I assume Gibson starts in AAA due solely to him having an option remaining.
The last top SP FA are waiting for the Tanaka signing.
3/50 for Garza
As was mentioned above, about that time our youthful pitching depth is starting to mature.
Also worth mentioning is that 3 years from now Garza will (hopefully) be looking for one more big contract. That means a) he's likely to take a high AAV and give up some years so that he can cash in at a younger age than if he got a 5/60ish offer now, and b) he would be unlikely to accept arbitration.
The three new pitchers would provide a bridge from when we have almost exclusively young hitting talent to a time when we'd have hitting talent in/near their prime and young pitching talent hitting the majors... and it would come at a time (2014-2016) where we have a significant amount of money available are quite a few cheap contracts coming.
I'm lukewarm on Garza. I seem to change my mind on him from day to day. I'd certainly take him before I'd offer anything similar for Santana or Jimenez. I guess I'd say I'd be OK with the Twins shelling out money for Garza and I'll be OK with it if they don't.
I understand being concerned about handcuffing yourself by tying up too much money in long-term contracts to SPs this year, but I don't think a deal for Garza would be debilitating that way.
I also think some people are being overly optimistic on projected arrival dates for guys like Berrios, Stewart, Thorpe, etc. There's a fair chance none of them ever share a rotation with Nolasco during the period of the contract he just signed with the Twins.
Sounds to me from the answers to media questions yesterday that Ryan is not done shopping for FA starting pitchers and the fact that he didn't condition his comments with any of the expectations-lowering conditions that he's been infamous for using in the past makes me tend to think he is hoping to make another fairly major signing. I could see either Arroyo or Garza being that guy.
Kershaw is also on next year's FA list. And of the best names next year, virtually all the best will get extensions - Kershaw; Lester; Scherzer; and Masterson (I just don't see the Indians losing Ubaldo, Kazmir and Masterson in 2 short years).
If you take the $7-$8MM+ that Salty or AJ would have cost and the $5MM we supposedly offered Pelfrey, that's $12-$13MM. Now that we're going with Pinto and no veteran catcher, why not spend another $2-$4MM for Garza. If we can convince him to take a 3-year deal, that would be ideal, but I'd go four years if I had to (with a limited no trade clause). As long as we have the ability to trade when the kiddie corps comes of age, I'd do it in a heartbeat.
Here's a list of next year's FA's:
Garza would be a nice add, but how does the team score any runs if you blow the budget this year on pitching (which I've raised in another thread)? Or are we just writing off 2014?
Garza is the best and most affordable FA that will not cost a draft pick until 2015, BOOK IT (yearn to be rav.....)
Homer Bailey (more expensive, better, will cost a draft pick, rumor he will test waters)
Jon Leser (better, more expensive, will cost draft pick, also would assume he gets extended.)
Max Scherzer....really again? Detroit just made all of these moves to help get him re-signed long term.
Justin Masterson is really the only other option and I guess we could argue who is better. 7.9 WAR over past 3 seasons vs 5.5 WAR for Garza. Which probably says Masterson is once again going to cost more than Garza will this offseason.
I truly believe the market is going to go down for Garza. If he can be had for same type of money that we got Nolasco, we should snag him.
I would rather have too much pitching because that can always be solved if that is case. I see these projected rotations but nobody has put in anybody getting hurt or not developing as fast as projected. Look at last three years we had projected prospects and veterans get hurt and loose 1 to two seasons. I am willing to bet this continues we have several pitchers that get hurt in next three years and we will need extra pitching. Starting pitching is at premium very few teams have excess pitching and if they do its used acquired new prospects or player needed right now to win. I look at some of big spending teams Yankees are going to need pitching this year and again next year what are they willing to pay, Angels same thing, and Dodgers are stockpiling pitching. So any quality starter the Twins can sign and is in budget now should be done. To be contending team it takes pitching and Twins have prooved this past 3 seasons with poor pitching they have lost 90 + games. So any reasonable young pitcher they can sign to 3 to 5 year deal needs to be looked at. I am quite confident that Twins prospects are going to provide enough offense in the future and defensive ability with exception SS for all fielding positions. Twins history on developing pitching is limited the better pitchers they have develop mostly have come after trades or rule 5 drafts not from their drafting of pitchers. Like Viola, Santanna, Milton, Liraino, Nathan, Lohse, and Tapani and Twins pitchers they drafted came up as starters were Radke , Baker, Garza, Blackburn, Mays and S. Erickson but the Twins pitchers drafted and became quality relief pitchers list is long of Hawkins, Guardodo, Mahomes, Romero, gutherie, Rincon, Balfour, Crain, Neshek, Mirjares, Swarzek, Duensing, Burnett, and Perkins. Like I have said Twins history on drafting pitching there have been very few big successes in past 20 years of producing starting pitching so anytime they can obtain quality pitching they should go for it.
Much rather sign garza than give up a prospect for Anderson.
Yes, I believe at least some of Willingham, Doumit, Arcia and Plouffe will have better years than they had in 2013. I admit it's probably just as likely that Dozier regresses a bit.
I'm not sold on Pinto yet, but with the preferred options off the market now, I don't see a lot of better options available. If the Twins do add someone, it's not likely to be someone with more offensive potential at any rate.
I think Hicks will surprise people. Despite his 1st round pick pedigree, he hasn't been a guy who consistently assimilated to new levels of competition well, but he does show the ability to catch up a year later. Not a good first year of full season pro ball at low A, but improved considerably the next year repeating the level. Not much of a year the following season at A+, but followed that with a solid year at AA. We know what happened next, he rode a hot spring training to a spot in Minnesota, skipping AAA entirely. Not surprising to me, given his history, that he struggled. He won't be an All-Star in 2014, but I think he'll be a solid contributor, even if he has to start the season at AAA.
But let's say I'm wrong, especially about Hicks and Plouffe. Maybe you want to sign upgrades for CF and 3B. With Buxton and Sano obviously knocking on the door in Minnesota, how many legitimate upgrades at those positions do you think are going to be anxious to sign in Minnesota? They'd be signing to join a last place team, knowing that when the team DOES turn around, it won't be them playing CF and 3B. That's a tough sell for a GM.
2014 is a transitional year. The Twins need to get much better and do so by adding guys who will still be around and useful when Sano/Buxton, et al, arrive. To me, that means you focus on starting pitching and improve there first and foremost.
If July rolls around and you find yourself in contention somehow, then you look to where you might benefit by adding short term help, even if that's CF/3B.
Re: Garza. I am fairly convinced that regardless of what Ryan might be saying publicly, as long as Gardenhire and Anderson are with the Twins, there is no way that Garza returns. Oil and vinegar.
A pitcher no one mentions is Jeff Samardzija. The Twins have the prospects to get it done, and prospect attrition always happens. The Cubs are probably further off then the Twins are, with a (slightly) weaker farm system. I think it's a no-brainer.
"We don't have the pitchers to trade them"? Are you serious? Go ahead and look at baseball prospectus's Twins Top Ten, Prospects on the Rise, and Factors on the Farm. Out of those pitchers, Berrios, Gonsalves, Eades, and May could be jettisoned; throw Gibson in there and to sweeten it, put Rosario in the mix. Make your own package from those players and tell me again how the Twins don't have the pitching prospects to get something done.
Examples: Berrios, May, Rosario
May, Gonsalves, Rosario
Berrios, Eades, Rosario
Gibson, May, Rosario