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Dave Cameron: Are the Twins becoming a team of Joe Mauers?

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#1 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 25 April 2014 - 12:38 PM

Not the title, but it could be. It's about how the Twins have simply stopped swinging at pitches and reaped rewards for it. Good stuff.

http://www.fangraphs...lan-dont-swing/

#2 diehardtwinsfan

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Posted 25 April 2014 - 12:45 PM

That one inning against the Jays I'm sure skewed things a bit, as a commentor noted... I'd also say that if pitchers start throwing them more strikes, the should still get good hits. The key to plate discipline isn't as much drawing walks as it is laying off pitches you cannot make good contact on.

#3 ashburyjohn

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Posted 25 April 2014 - 12:52 PM

I'm confident that it's more complicated than "simply stopped swinging", but it's nice to see recognition for the good results at the plate these first few weeks.

#4 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 25 April 2014 - 12:55 PM

That one inning against the Jays I'm sure skewed things a bit, as a commentor noted... I'd also say that if pitchers start throwing them more strikes, the should still get good hits. The key to plate discipline isn't as much drawing walks as it is laying off pitches you cannot make good contact on.


Yep. As Cameron points out, pitchers are going after the Twins' hitters based on zone percentage, the hitters just aren't swinging often unless they get something they can hit. That's a very good sign.

#5 ashburyjohn

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Posted 25 April 2014 - 01:01 PM

Kudos have been offered to Brunansky, but it occurs to me to wonder whether Jack Goin has unearthed some methodology to detect tendencies in opposing pitchers (count, outs, men on base, ...) to help guide the strategy at bat. It can't help with pitch recognition, but situational thinking, if it can be boiled down, can't hurt. And not all 2-1 counts are born equal.

#6 Dman

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Posted 25 April 2014 - 01:09 PM

Hey someone stole my idea on this. Who says Joe Mauer isn't a mentor? It looks like the whole team is following his approach. What I don't understand is that as poor as Joe is hitting right now why do they still walk him? Why don't pitchers get more aggressive in the zone when they know we aren't swinging?

Price went after the hitters and made it to the 8th inning I believe. I think the Twins have proven that pitchers need to throw strikes or they won't make it out of the 4th inning. I really like the team approach but at some point they are going to have to actually hit the ball.

#7 twinsnorth49

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Posted 25 April 2014 - 01:10 PM

[COLOR=#333333]

The key to plate discipline isn't as much drawing walks as it is laying off pitches you cannot make good contact on.[/COLOR]


Unless you're Joe Mauer with RISP late in a game that your trailing, that's totally different :).

#8 twinsnorth49

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Posted 25 April 2014 - 01:12 PM

Joe Mauer, an example for others to follow?..........you don't say.

#9 gunnarthor

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Posted 25 April 2014 - 01:12 PM

A team full of Joe Mauers wouldn't have any home runs therefore your title is completely wrong.

But it sure has been fun to watch this.

#10 JustinCB

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Posted 25 April 2014 - 01:15 PM

"[COLOR=#000000][FONT=georgia]I don’t think anyone expects guys like Colabello and Kubel to keep hitting, after all, and Kurt Suzuki has a long track record of not being able to hit, so expecting him to have figured something out at age-30 is unrealistic. The Twins offense is performing way over its head, and is basically guaranteed to regress over the next five months."

Cruel reality![/FONT][/COLOR]

#11 Jarends703

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Posted 25 April 2014 - 02:10 PM

When Arcia and Willingham return to the lineup the swinging might increase. From what I can remember, they seem to be more aggressive at the plate.

#12 diehardtwinsfan

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Posted 25 April 2014 - 02:13 PM

"[COLOR=#000000][FONT=georgia]I don’t think anyone expects guys like Colabello and Kubel to keep hitting, after all, and Kurt Suzuki has a long track record of not being able to hit, so expecting him to have figured something out at age-30 is unrealistic. The Twins offense is performing way over its head, and is basically guaranteed to regress over the next five months."

Cruel reality![/FONT][/COLOR]


I would agree wholeheartedly on Suzuki, but let's not forget that Kubel (up until last season) was a pretty decent hitter, and he's not exactly putting up otherworldly numbers right now... He's just hitting well. He very well could do this all year long.

Cola is a bit of a wildcard as he's raked in the high minors the last two seasons but struggled in MLB last year. His age is a factor against him, but he's demonstrated the ability to adjust... Who knows. If he keeps it up, he becomes quite the steal.

#13 Beezer07

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Posted 25 April 2014 - 02:49 PM

"[COLOR=#000000][FONT=georgia]I don’t think anyone expects guys like Colabello and Kubel to keep hitting, after all, and Kurt Suzuki has a long track record of not being able to hit, so expecting him to have figured something out at age-30 is unrealistic. The Twins offense is performing way over its head, and is basically guaranteed to regress over the next five months."

Cruel reality![/FONT][/COLOR]


I was trying to think of something more insightful than "duh" to say to this, but...duh! The question is whether they can keep up the plate discipline (namely, drawing walks) if the BABIPs start coming down. I sure hope so, as plate discipline is a skill that can be learned/taught, IMO

#14 SpiritofVodkaDave

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Posted 25 April 2014 - 02:52 PM

I'm confident that it's more complicated than "simply stopped swinging", but it's nice to see recognition for the good results at the plate these first few weeks.


For overall walks? yeah a little. For each hitters swing rate? Not so much. That inning was more or less just one at bat for each of the guys, ntm several of them swung at other strikes in the at-bats.
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#15 zchrz

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Posted 25 April 2014 - 03:33 PM

It will be interesting to see how other teams start to pitch them after the Rays series. Price really gave them trouble by constantly throwing strikes and not giving them much to take, though they did adjust some and hit the 2 mistakes he made en route to him throwing a complete game. He is an elite example of a strike thrower, and there are few of those, but that looks to be the kryptonite to a patient lineup. Odorizzi, or however its spelt, tried and was successful at the same thing the next game until he started hanging change ups.
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#16 twinsnorth49

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Posted 25 April 2014 - 03:41 PM

Guys like Price are the kryptonite for pretty much every team, if they can make everyone else have to reach that standard I like they're chances.

#17 iastfan112

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Posted 25 April 2014 - 05:42 PM

Dave Cameron continue to hate Kubel. I don't think he's had one nice thing to say about Kubel his whole career.

#18 Sconnie

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Posted 25 April 2014 - 07:08 PM

I was trying to think of something more insightful than "duh" to say to this, but...duh! The question is whether they can keep up the plate discipline (namely, drawing walks) if the BABIPs start coming down. I sure hope so, as plate discipline is a skill that can be learned/taught, IMO

I'm more worried about whiffs than BABIP at this point. According to walk rate, eventually pitchers are going to start throwing more hitable pitches knowing Twins batters are reluctant to swing. The natural response is to swing more frequently. Similarly to the gripe about "pitch to contact" here with the Twins, other teams will see the same 2012-2013 Twins issue of putting many balls into play for many teams will lead to more errors and plays that cannot be made. My fear is this team won't put that many into play, just strike out on hitable pitches.

#19 Sconnie

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Posted 25 April 2014 - 07:12 PM

It will be interesting to see how other teams start to pitch them after the Rays series. Price really gave them trouble by constantly throwing strikes and not giving them much to take, though they did adjust some and hit the 2 mistakes he made en route to him throwing a complete game. He is an elite example of a strike thrower, and there are few of those, but that looks to be the kryptonite to a patient lineup. Odorizzi, or however its spelt, tried and was successful at the same thing the next game until he started hanging change ups.

Good point Ordorizzi isn't Price, but looked like him until he lost the feel for the change up. Not many Price's out there, but there's a whole bunch of Ordorizzi's.

#20 Guest_USAFChief_*

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Posted 26 April 2014 - 08:26 AM

Dave Cameron continue to hate Kubel. I don't think he's had one nice thing to say about Kubel his whole career.

Cameron tends to hold a grudge when he says something that belongs in the Preposterous Statement Tournament, doubles down on stupid by ridiculing anyone who dares disagree, and then is proven badly wrong.

In 2009, Cameron wrote a piece critical of the Twins for extending Kubel. The money quote: "In what world is Kubel better than Eric Hinske?" Kubel put up a .907 OPS that year, and Cameron got a lot of (deserved) grief over it.

I laughed when the Mariners signed Robbie Cano, the subject of perhaps the most famous of Cameron's preposterous statements.

#21 jokin

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Posted 26 April 2014 - 08:36 AM

Cameron tends to hold a grudge when he says something that belongs in the Preposterous Statement Tournament, doubles down on stupid by ridiculing anyone who dares disagree, and then is proven badly wrong.

In 2009, Cameron wrote a piece critical of the Twins for extending Kubel. The money quote: "In what world is Kubel better than Eric Hinske?" Kubel put up a .907 OPS that year, and Cameron got a lot of (deserved) grief over it.

I laughed when the Mariners signed Robbie Cano, the subject of perhaps the most famous of Cameron's preposterous statements.


Hopefully, Cameron will have more crow to chew on quite soon....remember this ditty from a year ago?

[h=2]Nationals Steal Denard Span From Twins[/h]

#22 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 26 April 2014 - 08:51 AM

Yep. I respect a lot of what Cameron says but when he's wrong, he'll just keep doubling down on stupid until it's hard to take anything he says seriously anymore.

Unfortunate, because he's a pretty smart guy and could be a great writer if he could let go of the hubris.

#23 Thrylos

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Posted 26 April 2014 - 09:04 AM

Yep. I respect a lot of what Cameron says but when he's wrong, he'll just keep doubling down on stupid until it's hard to take anything he says seriously anymore.

Unfortunate, because he's a pretty smart guy and could be a great writer if he could let go of the hubris.


I think that he should keep writing on things he knows about, like the Mariners, and quit talking about teams that he never watches play (unless they play the Mariners,) like the Twins. That's the biggest problem with him and lot of others who are trying to become "national" overnight...
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#24 AM.

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Posted 26 April 2014 - 11:07 AM

"I don’t think anyone expects guys like Colabello and Kubel to keep hitting."

I was was going to say that this was good locker room bulletin board material.

#25 BigTrane

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Posted 26 April 2014 - 04:10 PM

Maybe the most interesting stat would be Cameron's swing (and miss) rate...?
Feel free to pile on about Suzuki.