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Thread: Optimisms vs Reality

  1. #1
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    Optimisms vs Reality

    I agree with Nick Nelson and believe Terry Ryan is making a tremendous mistake by not trading for a proven reliever. The Twins tried the same thing last year and it failed miserably. It almost appears as if the team wants to lose because they are not good enough to compete in the A.L. Central Division. Name the last team to draw 3.2 million fans to a new ballpark, cut payroll by $15 million, lose 99 games, let three of their best players leave, and tell people they were going to compete. There is nothing wrong with loving this team but there is a difference between optimisms and reality. Please tell me what you think.
    Last edited by Fanatic Jack; 02-28-2012 at 08:01 AM.

  2. #2
    Unfortunately, finding a right handed setup guy is number 72 on a list of 150 things the Twins need to get done. We may need a guy but there are bigger issues that should be addressed (but it's too late now). Trading assets now for a middle reliever . . . just a waste (see Matt Capps).

    The Twins saying "we're going to complete" is just PR. We're rebuilding (or at least, we should be). I believe TR is trying to balance not tanking the entire season with retooling for the future. They can't say that though as the majority of the fanbase doesn't have the patience to sit through what they know will be a losing season, so the Twins need to put a smiley face on everything.

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    We have discussed this problem before. It is all philosophy with the ownership. If they wanted(really wanted) a contending team this season they would have have acquired the proper free agents until the lower minor players are ready, This would take 2-3 years. However, they have chose not to do this. The result will be a lower level team for the next few years. And if you make a mistake in the minors(players drafted) it will take another 6 years for another crop to come through. Terry Ryan has stated this in his past tenure. If you listen regularly to MLB on XM, as I do, there are not many pundits that think the Twins will do very well. And most publications predict them for 4 th in the Central.
    How can you have a strong team if in the past 2 seasons you have decimated the relief corp, rid yourself of one of the best relievers in the league, eliminated 3 of your strongest hitters--especially your power base? So it is an ownership problem--nothing Terry can do when told to cut payroll. This is really going to turn the fan base off by mid-season.

  4. #4
    Owner MVP Seth Stohs's Avatar
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    Well, if MLB on XM says that the Twins can't compete in 2012, then it must be true. I've said many times that I think that this team needs absolutely everything to go well to have any chance to compete in the AL Central. Possible? Yes. Likely? Probably not. Will adding a right-handed set up man make them suddenly much more likely to compete? Possible? Maybe. Likely? Probably not.
    Like I wrote last week, if everything goes right, they could compete. If not, they've got a good group of tradeable players to start a rebuilding process. Twins fans just haven't dealt with that in a decade.
    Last edited by Seth Stohs; 02-28-2012 at 08:54 AM.

  5. #5
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    Trade?

    Who do you trade? You give up a prospect to get an arm at the start of the season. Ryan did nothing to shore up the pen in the offseason when lots of options were available but to trade away someone now would be a mistake.

    That would be making a bad situation worse.

  6. #6
    Senior Member All-Star Thrylos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fanatic Jack View Post
    There is nothing wrong with loving this team but there is a difference between optimisms and reality. Please tell me what you think.
    I will get a bit technical here but there is no difference "between optimisms and reality". There is one reality. Some of us chose to respond optimistically to it, while others pessimistically. I just cannot write the season off before a single Spring Training game pitch has been thrown. Remember 1987? Remember 1991? Remember 2001? I do.
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  7. #7
    Do you believe the Twins are just a right handed reliever away from being a world series contender? I think they have about 3 other more importent needs and even if they threw another 20 million at those problems they would still be a .500 team at best, if Mauer, Mourneau, Span, etc. do not all rebound, improve, and stay healthy. That's the reality this team is facing, they have to take a wait and see approach.

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    I believe the Twins would win more games with another solid, dependable RH reliever they can use in the 8th inning. The goal is to win as many games as possible. Most of you are missing the point. It also takes pressure off young pitchers like Burnett, Swarzak, and Duensing. They are more effective and confident with each successful outing.
    Last edited by Fanatic Jack; 02-28-2012 at 01:00 PM.

  9. #9
    Owner MVP Seth Stohs's Avatar
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    I've got to be honest. Maybe I'm wrong. But I would like to see what Kyle Waldrop can do, given an opportunity. I'd like to see what Doyle can do. Just because Anthony Swarzak hasn't pitched much in 7th or 8th innings doesn't mean he can't and certainly doesn't mean he shouldn't be given an opportunity. Bulger's three years before the injury were as good as any of the guys that keep being brought up that the Twins should have signed.

  10. #10
    Once again, I agree with Seth. We just do not know yet how the current options are going to develop this year. As far as the Twins being in rebuilding vs. winning mode, I don't think they really had much of a choice but to basically tweak and hope this year. The price tag for the free agents was higher than they are worth, in my opinion (both this year an last), so I'm ok with not signing them, and there a too many unknowns with key players to just hang it up and rebuild. Mauer, Morneau, Span, Baker, Liriano, etc. could go either way and it is unrealistic to think that any GM would spend a bunch of money on various plan B scenarios to cover all the unknowns when there is a decent possibility that some, if not all, of these guys perform much better than they did in 2011. I'm fine with the approach Terry Ryan has taken, but also am well aware that if the Twins have the rough start I expect them to have, given their first 30+ game schedule with so many games against the AL East, the Twins will be in full blown rebuilding mode by the middle of June. I'd love to see them win, but it is inevitable that some year rebuilding is going to be necessary.

  11. #11
    I agree with you that the point is to win the most games, but the cost to trade for a 2 WAR reliever would probably be Liam Hendricks and Alex Wimmers (See Mike Adams trade from last year where Texas sent Erlin and Wieland to SD for him and Baseball America ranked those two #8 and #7 on San Diego's Top 10 prospects list) Do you think it is worth it to the Twins orginzation to send to players who can be solid starters for us be next year for the 1-2 wins a solid reliever could add? To a team who, being realistic, probably wont make the playoffs this year?

  12. #12
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    The truth is if they could have signed Wheeler, Coffey, Linebrook, or taken a chance on Wuertz for almost nothing. Either way they would not have to trade for anybody. I want to see Waldrop and if they cut the over-hyped Burnett there is enough room for both. The front office told season ticket holders and fans they were trying to win. Were they lying??
    Last edited by Fanatic Jack; 02-28-2012 at 04:57 PM.

  13. #13
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    The only way that you can compete when your farm base is not ready--where the top talent is in the low minors-- You sign free agents and don't make trades. But, this takes a lot of money! That is what the Phillies and other teams contending teams do. Twins ownership has comparable financial capabilities as the Philles. We are not a small market team anymore! So it is the will of the ownership. However, if you accept what the Twins philosophy is then Seth's approach is correct in his analysis. He knows the players and the system as well or better than anybody.

  14. #14
    The King In The North All-Star Nick Nelson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Todd G
    Trading assets now for a middle reliever . . . just a waste (see Matt Capps).
    I'm not convinced that it would cost a treasured asset to acquire someone like Uehara, as long as you're willing to pay his salary. Pointing to the Capps example – one of the worst prospect-for-reliever swaps in recent memory – is disingenuous. There are plenty of examples of teams trading for quality relievers without giving up much. In fact, the Twins have been involved with plenty of them (Rauch, Fuentes, etc).

    Quote Originally Posted by Seth Stohs
    I've got to be honest. Maybe I'm wrong. But I would like to see what Kyle Waldrop can do, given an opportunity. I'd like to see what Doyle can do. Just because Anthony Swarzak hasn't pitched much in 7th or 8th innings doesn't mean he can't and certainly doesn't mean he shouldn't be given an opportunity.
    Of course you do. That's because you're completely dedicated to following prospects. But you know as well as anyone that the vast majority of these borderline prospects do not pan out in the major leagues. Those inexpensive relief arms that the Twins passed up on this offseason are absolute best-case scenarios for most of these guys they have in camp. And they would've cost a million bucks or so.

    Quote Originally Posted by Seth Stohs
    I've said many times that I think that this team needs absolutely everything to go well to have any chance to compete in the AL Central. Possible? Yes. Likely? Probably not. Will adding a right-handed set up man make them suddenly much more likely to compete? Possible? Maybe. Likely? Probably not.
    So you think they have a chance to compete, and you think they'll need all the help they can get, yet you don't believe it's important to round out the bullpen with a reliable major-league arm? I'm sorry but your entire sentiment here seems like a contradiction of itself.

    Quote Originally Posted by TwinsMusings
    The price tag for the free agents was higher than they are worth, in my opinion (both this year an last), so I'm ok with not signing them, and there a too many unknowns with key players to just hang it up and rebuild.
    This is a generalization that is simply untrue when applied to the relief pitching market. It was oversaturated and many of the bullpen arms that signed this offseason went far cheaper than they would have under normal circumstances.

  15. #15
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    Ditto. Miss your site already. I don't think I'm a kool-aid drinker, but I just enjoyed going to an optimistic spot. All this pessimism/obsession with whether or not a journeyman reliever amounts to a hill of beans has got me reevaluating my desire to read blogs.

  16. #16
    Senior Member All-Star Jim Crikket's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thrylos98 View Post
    I will get a bit technical here but there is no difference "between optimisms and reality". There is one reality. Some of us chose to respond optimistically to it, while others pessimistically. I just cannot write the season off before a single Spring Training game pitch has been thrown. Remember 1987? Remember 1991? Remember 2001? I do.
    This is spot on. Optimism and Reality are not polar opposites. And it communicates a level of arrogance that I find offensive, to be honest. It says, "My opinion is reality and if you don't agree with me, you are wrong." It's the epitome of arrogance!

    Your pessimism is no more "reality" than someone else's optimism is because there is no "reality" until games start counting.

    It's fine to be of the opinion that the Twins haven't done things you think they should have. Hell, I'd bet virtually all of us would have preferred Terry Ryan do SOMETHING differently than what he did. I know I feel that way, too.

    But you come off as just arrogant when you treat anyone who doesn't choose to constantly bitch and moan about what morons the Twins are every day and every night as though they are obviously inferior to you.

    I don't feel my choice to enjoy spring training and look forward to seeing what's possible constitutes being unrealistic and I'm a bit tired of people ragging on me and anyone who doesn't think everything and everyone in the Twins organization sucks.
    I opine about the Twins and Kernels regularly at Knuckleballsblog.com while my alter ego, SD Buhr covers the Kernels for MetroSportsReport.com.

    ~You can get anything you want at Alice's Restaurant~

  17. #17
    This is a generalization that is simply untrue when applied to the relief pitching market. It was oversaturated and many of the bullpen arms that signed this offseason went far cheaper than they would have under normal circumstances.
    I wasn't as clear as I could have been. I meant the Twins' free agents (Cuddyer, Kubel, Nathan) when I wrote "The price tag for the free agents...". I agree with you, Nick, about the reliever free agent market being oversaturated. I am just not convinced that some of those guys are better bets than what the Twins have in camp. We'll eventually find out as the season goes along.
    Last edited by TwinsMusings; 02-28-2012 at 10:53 PM.

  18. #18
    Owner MVP Seth Stohs's Avatar
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    Well stated, Mr. Crikket!!

  19. #19
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    Jim,

    The whole point to this thread was to point out how Twins fans never see the reality of any situation. The reality in November 2007 was the Twins lost two players that come along once a century (Santana & Hunter) for basically nothing. The team has not even come close to replacing an ace in the starting rotation and the leadership and production of Hunter. They spent some money in 2010 but at the trade deadline chose to trade a good prospect for an average relief pitcher. This looks like a bad trade and that is reality. They lost four good relief pitchers before (Fuentes, Guerrier, Crain, and Rauch) 2011 and promised the bullpen would be just fine. Well guess what it did not work out for them that is reality. This winter they lost the nucleus (Cuddyer, Kubel, Nathan) and replaced them with decent stabilizers. However, it’s unknown how it will work out and that is again reality. Going into the season with the same rotation and a makeshift bullpen in 2012 is a very risky idea. This again is reality.


    There is nothing wrong with being optimistic about the Twins. I can be optimistic about being wealthy, but if I’m lazy it’s probably not going to happen. Just remember if this was NY, LA, Chicago, or Philly and they cut payroll by $15 million after losing 99 games, reporters would run ownership out of town and that is reality. These rose colored glasses everybody wears in this town is really something. I believe as a fan it's your responsibility to call out the front office when they won’t spend money like other clubs. The difference between Zygi Wilf and the Pohlad family is he is always willing to spend the extra dough to take a shot at winning it all. See Brett Farve paid $20 million a season for more.
    Last edited by Fanatic Jack; 02-28-2012 at 11:31 PM.

  20. #20
    Fanatic Jack - Nice analysis. I'd only add that the willingness to spend money needs to go hand in hand with the ability to spend it wisely.

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