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Thread: Article: Not Such Minor Signings

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    Owner MVP Seth Stohs's Avatar
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    Article: Not Such Minor Signings


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    It can also prevent advancement. Players like Rosario, Pinto and Ibarra have all been working slowly up the minors way. Look for the other two to be added to the 40-man roster this year. Yes, it is good to have minor league free agents if you don't have ready players for the upper levels of the minors, and also to be those bench replacement players if the major league utility guy is suddenly put into play.

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    I was unaware that Josmil Pinto had a chance to be a FA. Didn't he get added to the 40 man?

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    Senior Member Double-A troyhobbs's Avatar
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    Some of the "success" of these signings are relative, in that, on a better roster perhaps they don't make as big of an impact. Serviceable players on the cheap is one area where Twins FO excels though.

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    Senior Member Triple-A Thegrin's Avatar
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    Were these signings on Terry Ryan's watch ? I always thought they were.

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    Senior Member All-Star Badsmerf's Avatar
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    This is an area of talent acquisition that Terry Ryan does pretty well. I'm not really sure if that is a good thing... or a bad thing...

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    It feels a little underwhelming right now, the ability to sign "fill-in" players that end up contributing. But in 5 or 6 years if it really is a skill that Terry Ryan can repeat we'll appreciate it a lot more as all our hot young prospects start getting expensive together.

    Regardless, the story of these guys getting their chance and making the most of it is an awful lot of fun. Thanks for the constant reminders, Seth.

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    Twins Moderator All-Star diehardtwinsfan's Avatar
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    Every GM has to do this from time to time, and as others have pointed out, TR does well in this area. Granted the Twins need to do this a bit more than most right now, but if you can pick up a decent role player (Fein/Burton/Deduno), then it's a win.

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    Owner All-Star John Bonnes's Avatar
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    It's absolutely helped the bullpen and the outlook is great for the Twins in that area. And it seems to be helping find a serviceable rotation arm or two, too.

    Thinking back to the early 2000s, it seems like Ryan has some success in this area then, too. Not necessarily minor league free agents, but overlooked minor league assets that played a role. Dustin Mohr and Santana come to mind, but was Romero lifted from someone else? Seems like I wrote a lot about these types of players back then.

    But interestingly it was not a strength once the Twins got competitive. "Fill in" pieces in the late 00s often struggled. They were different - often veteran major leaguers instead of hungry minor leaguers. And there was much less room for error - we didn't have four months for them to find a role and establish themselves

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    Right, John. Great at filling in when they had no talent, but when Rich Becker and Jason Tyner are your DH on a great team.....well.....I'm 100% with John on this one.
    Lighten up Francis....

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    Finding "diamonds in the rough" isn't Terry Ran's issue, IMO. I have said all along that he is a good scout and has the eye to find talent. His issues are in assembling a Major League roster.

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    Finding diamonds in the rough is not just a Ryan strength, but an organizational strength of the field staff and scouts paying attention and being consulted, I believe. You don't uncover the Burtons and Fiens from a cubicle with Fangraphs up and running.

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    Twins Moderator All-Star diehardtwinsfan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Bonnes View Post
    It's absolutely helped the bullpen and the outlook is great for the Twins in that area. And it seems to be helping find a serviceable rotation arm or two, too.

    Thinking back to the early 2000s, it seems like Ryan has some success in this area then, too. Not necessarily minor league free agents, but overlooked minor league assets that played a role. Dustin Mohr and Santana come to mind, but was Romero lifted from someone else? Seems like I wrote a lot about these types of players back then.

    But interestingly it was not a strength once the Twins got competitive. "Fill in" pieces in the late 00s often struggled. They were different - often veteran major leaguers instead of hungry minor leaguers. And there was much less room for error - we didn't have four months for them to find a role and establish themselves
    It's a bit of a crap shoot. Those 2000s teams didn't exactly have tons of positions to be doing this with... and for every Fein, Burton, or Deduno there's a Jeff Gray, Walters, or DeVries.

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    Owner MVP Seth Stohs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rosterman View Post
    It can also prevent advancement. Players like Rosario, Pinto and Ibarra have all been working slowly up the minors way. Look for the other two to be added to the 40-man roster this year. Yes, it is good to have minor league free agents if you don't have ready players for the upper levels of the minors, and also to be those bench replacement players if the major league utility guy is suddenly put into play.
    Rosario doesn't have to be added until after the 2014 season, so he likely won't be added this offseason (could be added for September, though unlikely, and could be added by June of next year, pretty likely).

    I think Ibarra will be in the same situation as Pinto a year ago. They become minor league free agents right after the World Series. They both signed back with the Twins that day. Then when the 40 man roster decisions have to be made in November, they added Pinto. They could do the same with Ibarra, or just add him right away at that time. My guess is he's one we will see in September.

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    Owner MVP Seth Stohs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by clutterheart View Post
    I was unaware that Josmil Pinto had a chance to be a FA. Didn't he get added to the 40 man?
    Yes, he was a free agent right after the World Series, but he signed a minor league contract with the Twins that day... then he was added to the 40 man roster in November.

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    Quote Originally Posted by diehardtwinsfan View Post
    Every GM has to do this from time to time, and as others have pointed out, TR does well in this area. Granted the Twins need to do this a bit more than most right now, but if you can pick up a decent role player (Fein/Burton/Deduno), then it's a win.
    Correct! Good, top teams typically have less holes to fill, less opportunity, and it's just depth. Looking back, these moves typically happen on the fringes. It's relievers, like Tony Fiore. Generally, the minor league free agents are signed for depth and to help the AAA roster.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Siehbiscuit View Post
    Finding "diamonds in the rough" isn't Terry Ran's issue, IMO. I have said all along that he is a good scout and has the eye to find talent. His issues are in assembling a Major League roster.
    I'd say Ryan did a pretty good job of assembling those early to mid '00s rosters. It didn't happen overnight either... took much of the mid-to-late 90s.

    I'd agree with the talent coming from different places. Consider Pedro Florimon was a waiver claim from the Orioles. The Twins claimed him, and soon after, they DFAd him and were able to pass him through waivers and keep him on a minor league deal.

    I know Clete Thomas is not a starting outfielder, but he can be a solid 4th or 5th outfielder, and he was a waiver claim. Lots of ways to add talent.

    However, for a team to be good, it's going to take those top talent prospects leading the way... the first round picks, the stars will lead the way. The others will contribute nicely.

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    Quote Originally Posted by diehardtwinsfan View Post
    It's a bit of a crap shoot. Those 2000s teams didn't exactly have tons of positions to be doing this with... and for every Fein, Burton, or Deduno there's a Jeff Gray, Walters, or DeVries.
    Gray wasn't a minor league free agent.
    Walters has made 20 starts for the Twins... Very few minor league free agents do that.
    De Vries is a long-time guy in the organization who got a chance, but he was not a free agent. ... he will likely be after the season.

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    I think Colabello is one of the major contributors not PJ Walters.

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    Senior Member All-Star Badsmerf's Avatar
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    I would disagree with him doing a good job in the 00's. Actually, I think he did a pretty poor job of finding talent like he has lately. Those teams really only needed a few pieces to play at an acceptable level, and he failed to find those pieces miserably. From RonDL White, to Tony Batista to Sidney Ponson, these guys were not good investments or even attempts at an investment. His forte seems to be finding guys to succeed in the bullpen.

    Lately he has found more talent in guys like Thomas and Colabello so perhaps he is getting better at this. When the big time talent starts trickling into the MLB roster I hope he can continue to find useful pieces, because those are the guys that can make the difference in winning championships.
    Do or do not. There is no try.

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