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Article: Twins Need to Focus on Future, Not Old Favorites

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#61 cmathewson

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Posted 09 May 2014 - 11:03 AM

Not to sound flippant but those 2000s Twins must have really not cared about winning games because they rolled out some pretty awful players as starters, much less 25th roster men.

One bad roster move is a mistake. Five bad roster moves is a catastrophe. I don't see why this is so difficult to understand. I'm not even defending the Bartlett move, it was a bad one... But ultimately, its importance is questionable because the Twins literally had a dozen chances to minimize its impact and fumbled at nearly every turn.


I agree with that. But those dozen chances were mostly about the 24th or 25th man, depending on how you count. As I said, the Bartlett move would have had minimal impact if they had DFAd anybody but the only center fielder above single A with options when they claimed Fuld.
"If you'da been thinkin' you wouldn't 'a thought that.."

#62 TheLeviathan

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Posted 09 May 2014 - 11:05 AM

but one is a mistake that can be absorbed


Sure, you MIGHT be able to absorb it. It MIGHT not sink your season. But it's stupid to invite the risk of it hurting your team when it's SO EASY to fix!!!! This team has willfully subjected itself to a risk over the faulty notion that it "doesn't matter" when it most certainly does.

It's silly to defend the practice of willfully creating a situation you may have to overcome. Especially when it's easy to improve that situation with little or no significant cost. Maybe a handful of money and smart planning. Rather, we're tossing aside any need to be smart or prudent on the basis that it "can be absorbed". Smart teams don't subject themselves to risks they don't need to take.

#63 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 09 May 2014 - 11:11 AM

I agree with that. But those dozen chances were mostly about the 24th or 25th man, depending on how you count. As I said, the Bartlett move would have had minimal impact if they had DFAd anybody but the only center fielder above single A with options when they claimed Fuld.


And that's fair. They could have easily booted several other bad players off the 40 man and kept Mastro. They didn't have to swap Fuld for Mastroianni.

Looking at the 40 man, they currently have eight OF on the roster including Chris Herrmann.

So really, they have seven OF on the 40 man.

Four of those OF are injured.

Ugh.

#64 DocBauer

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Posted 09 May 2014 - 11:15 AM

Great article. Great points made by Nick and everyone else. Once again, well thought out arguements on both sides, and without the arguing. Lol

Some of my thoughts, and I apologize if I'm repetitive from other posts. The words go where needed.

The bad:

I 100% understand the Bartlett signing, even kind of agreed with it. Why not take a shot to see if a healthy Barlett could re-discover something and provide a steady backp and steady hand. Doubt something magical would happen, but what if it did? And a lot of people complained that maybe we needed a different attitude to be injected, of even, attitude at all. All that being said, it was obvious by the end of ST it was over. A few walks and at bats where he didn't strike out embarrassingly was no indication he could still play, much less provide depth at multiple positions. Some sort of misguided hope is no reason to give a roster spot to someone, in this case, the Bartlett experiment.

The worse:

I am not going to arbitrarily bash the FO. Between building the minors, and some ML moves, FA and otherwise, I think they've done a solid job. But when they botch something, it's got to be called out.

A team is built on its many parts. This may be most true in baseball where you really have two teams in one: 11-12 guys who basically do only one thing, pitch, and another 13-14 who play positions, don't pitch, and can't be substituted or rotated as in other sports. Plus, you play nearly every day, and don't have a reserve portion of the roster you can juggle as in the NFL or NBA on a game by game basis. So unless you save a spot at 25 on your roster for that rule 5 player to be stashed, as Nick stated, all 25 spots are important. And the FO blew two areas this off season.

The Twins blew the inf situation, not in regard to SS where they had Florimon, with all due respect to the many discussions and opinions debated at length, but with back up personnel. Sure, take a flyer on Barlett, why not? But nobody knew if Plouffe was going to mature as he has, nobody knew if Escobar was going to round in to a full time SS, short or long term, or be a quality utility guy. And despite playing very well now when given the chance, the jury is still out. Now, I think the Nunez might play out well as adding a useful player. And hopefully Santana will take this opportunity, and his considerable skills, and do something with it.

But we entered ST with Escobar, Barlett and a group of not yet ready middle infielders or AAAA players like Bernier for reserve status. Where was the ONE ML level guy you could count on? Nowhere.

Worse, as I have previously stated, was the OF/CF situation with the unknowns of Hicks, a journeyman in Presley, and an injured and still recovering Mastro. Losing Presley and Mastro and adding Fuld is not the point. Fuld is probably better than Presley anyway and Mastro, thus far, is a shadow of what he was in 2012. It's not about the Twins somehow expecting both Hicks and Fuld having concussions simultaneously. It's not even about losing Mastro and not replacing him. It's about going in to ST without another option to provide overall depth and competition, period.

The not so bad and even good:

The Barlett experiment was over quickly. And don't kid yourself, Gardy and the FO took a stupid shot and it clanked, and they knew it. If Barlett hadn't gotten hurt and decided to hang it up, they would have dropped him very soon. In fact, I have little doubt conversations with the Twins helped lead Bartlett to make his retirement decision.

The Twins made an unusually early season trade to bring in Nunez, not standing pat. Too bad he got hurt right away, but is hopefully healthy now and ready to help off the bench.

Arguements can be made the Twins waited too long, though only early May I don't see it that way, but they sent out Pelfrey and Florimon both. And even before sending Florimon down, Escobar began the process of replacing him. And doing rather well it should be noticed.

Further, despite Gardy's admirable but sometimes mis-guided loyalties to some players, these and other occurrences show a shift in the Twin's rebuilding philosophies and turning to young players. Giving Hicks his shot, playing Escobar now daily, Arcia in the daily lineup when healthy, keeping Pinto on the club and in the lineup daily (though I'd like to see him catch more), sticking with Dozier after the move to 2B last season, trusting Gibson in the rotation, sticking with Thielbar in the pen and calling up Tonkin early.

And shockingly, giving Santana a shot over the veteran Bernier, and actually letting him play!

There is a shift taking place here, and you will see more of it going forward.

Now that being said, I also am puzzled by the Guerrier move. His signing this off season for depth was a so-so move. But, it could provide a low risk depth move due to injuries and the such. And I don't have a real problem with his promotion at this time. I know he's not part of our future, and perhaps he'll simply be cut in a couple of weeks. But there is an opening in the pen with Deduno sliding in to the rotation that happens to co-incide with Guerrier's opt out. So you sent Darnell down, for now, to pitch every day and see if Guerrier can help fill in for the time being. Were it not for the opt out, probably would have seen the younger Pino come up instead. But in this particular case, I don't see Guerrier as being a "business as usual" move. Simply a look-see since things lined up a certain way. Now, if he isn't darned effective,or holds someone back, then we have issues here.

A roster caught short a day or two in the long season due to a sudden flux of injury is not an indictment of the FO. With a player or two ready to rejoin the club in 1-2 days and the team not wanting to make a number of sudden and very temporary roster moves should not be an indictment of the FO. However, failure to take action before the season starts at a position or two that have alarming and glaring needs IS something that needs to reprimanded.

#65 kdrupp09

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Posted 09 May 2014 - 11:49 AM

And shockingly, giving Santana a shot over the veteran Bernier, and actually letting him play!

There is a shift taking place here, and you will see more of it going forward.


I was actually very impressed with the FO for bringing up Santana. Hopefully he continues to play well and stays up.

#66 nicksaviking

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Posted 09 May 2014 - 12:06 PM

There will always be sentimental reunions if the same people run the show decade after decade after decade.

I'm not saying there needs to be front office change, but those who don't want change need to realize these kinds of moves are always going to happen.

#67 troyhobbs

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Posted 09 May 2014 - 12:33 PM

I don't really see much roster mis management here.
1. Bartlett vs Pressley....both are terrible so they went with the one with name recognition, also I bet they knew Fulds days were numbered in Oakland at this time too so if Bartlett failed which he did they had their option ready to pick.
2. Guerrier. we have 8 to 10 options who can succeed in a bullpen roll for a 7 man bullpen. which means we have depth to trade. Detroit and Anaheim Angels have bad bullpens and could come calling.
3. I can see that we probably should have sent Herman down a week ago and called up Wilkin Ramirez. that's probably the only real mistake I see.

At this point we are probably a starting pitcher and SS away from being a wild card contender. Meyer is coming up soon. so that one will be solved. stay tuned.....


Maybe if the Twins sign the best SP and SS to ever play baseball they'd be a wild card contender. Please name the RPs that the Twinkies could leverage in a meaningful trade that would make them competitive in the short term.

Edited by twinsnorth49, 09 May 2014 - 12:45 PM.


#68 troyhobbs

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Posted 09 May 2014 - 12:52 PM

In perhaps their most logical transaction of the year the Twins DFA Kenny Wilson, purchase Parms contract and activate Hicks.

#69 Dantes929

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Posted 09 May 2014 - 01:01 PM

" Maybe if the Twins sign the best SP and SS to ever play baseball they'd be a wild card contender." I can see it. Take Babe Ruth's 2.28 ERA to replace Correia and you have dropped another .5 run from the rotation average while also adding an everyday at bat maybe in center field since that is where the Red Sox played him and he was probably pretty fast. Maybe those old films aren't sped up but are real time. I'll take Alex Rodriquez in his 1996 year. Dozier, Mauer, Arod, Ruth, Plouffe, Willingham, Colabello, Pinto, and Arcia. That might contend for a wild spot. More likely we have to wait for Meyer, May, Darnell, Buxton, Sano and Rosario.

#70 Dantes929

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Posted 09 May 2014 - 01:07 PM

"In perhaps their most logical transaction of the year the Twins DFA Kenny Wilson, purchase Parms contract and activate Hicks." Where did you see that? Florimon and Hermann going down is definitely a contender. I have never wanted posters on here or maybe more to the point the Strib pages running this organization by consensus but this year has been a bit of a challenge to keeping that philosophical position.

#71 troyhobbs

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Posted 09 May 2014 - 01:16 PM

"In perhaps their most logical transaction of the year the Twins DFA Kenny Wilson, purchase Parms contract and activate Hicks." Where did you see that? Florimon and Hermann going down is definitely a contender. I have never wanted posters on here or maybe more to the point the Strib pages running this organization by consensus but this year has been a bit of a challenge to keeping that philosophical position.


I said perhaps.

#72 Brandon

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Posted 09 May 2014 - 01:29 PM

Whuuuuu? Who is our CF? For that matter, who is our outfield? Who is our leadoff hitter? Cleanup? Never mind the staff ERA of 4.67 and that is with a decent bullpen. I love the optimism, but I think we are more than a couple of players from being a wildcard contender.


The lineup can survive one hole in the lineup. Especially when the hole has a .315 OBP. that is at least serviceable. Plus he can field the position. (note He still has bad offense.)

the staff era is improving. with Deduno to go with Gibson, Hughes, and Nolasco gives us 4 solid not spectacular starters and when Meyer comes up that gives us a competitive 5 starters.

we have several cleanup type hitter on the roster Kubel, Willingham when he is healthy, Colabello, Arcia, Plouffe, and Suzuki has been hitting close to Mauer level here too.

This equates to needing 1 starting pitcher and one SS to be competitive. Yes we will still have holes. I didn't say we are going to beat Detroit for the division title. But I do think those 2 things would get us into the wild card discussion.

This is why I am frustrated about us not signing Drew. I hope Escobar runs with the SS position and fills that hole and Meyer fills out the rotation.

#73 Brandon

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Posted 09 May 2014 - 01:36 PM

Maybe if the Twins sign the best SP and SS to ever play baseball they'd be a wild card contender. Please name the RPs that the Twinkies could leverage in a meaningful trade that would make them competitive in the short term.


The Oakland A's need pitching depth and have a SS who is a top prospect in the minors. later this season we could trade 1 or 2 relievers, with say Willingham or Parmelee for offense, or a swingman like Swarzak or Corriea for Lowrie who will be a FA. Especially if Oakland has another pitcher get hurt. They get depth we get a proven SS for the stretch run.

Meyer is the pitcher to make us competitive provided he is ready when he comes up.

Anahiem and Detroit are 2 teams in the playoff hunt looking for bullpen help. I am sure there are others, Should we fall completely out of the race we could package 2 relievers for a decent prospect not great one.

#74 Mike Sixel

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Posted 09 May 2014 - 01:50 PM

Willingham? He hasn't played in a year. Parmalee? People claim he is a AAAA player.

I don't know, it is a site to discuss sports, not airline safety.....maybe we should take it less seriously?


#75 gocgo

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Posted 09 May 2014 - 02:41 PM

This is why I am frustrated about us not signing Drew. I hope Escobar runs with the SS position and fills that hole and Meyer fills out the rotation.


If you look at Drew's numbers, he really isn't all that. There's a reason every MLB team has passed on him for the money that he is asking....he isn't worth it.

#76 spycake

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Posted 09 May 2014 - 02:53 PM

The Oakland A's need pitching depth and have a SS who is a top prospect in the minors. later this season we could trade 1 or 2 relievers, with say Willingham or Parmelee for offense, or a swingman like Swarzak or Corriea for Lowrie who will be a FA. Especially if Oakland has another pitcher get hurt. They get depth we get a proven SS for the stretch run.


Oakland also has a hole at 2B. I doubt they are interested in dumping a 123 OPS+ SS for "pitching depth". Especially considering they rank #1 in ERA even without their top starters.

Plus, how many teams are ever interested in (or capable of) taking on 3 25-man roster players in exchange for 1. Such a deal would necessitate Oakland dumping multiple players in addition to Lowrie, just to make room for this supposed "depth".

#77 spycake

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Posted 09 May 2014 - 02:56 PM

The lineup can survive one hole in the lineup. Especially when the hole has a .315 OBP. that is at least serviceable. Plus he can field the position. (note He still has bad offense.)

the staff era is improving. with Deduno to go with Gibson, Hughes, and Nolasco gives us 4 solid not spectacular starters and when Meyer comes up that gives us a competitive 5 starters.

we have several cleanup type hitter on the roster Kubel, Willingham when he is healthy, Colabello, Arcia, Plouffe, and Suzuki has been hitting close to Mauer level here too.

This equates to needing 1 starting pitcher and one SS to be competitive. Yes we will still have holes. I didn't say we are going to beat Detroit for the division title. But I do think those 2 things would get us into the wild card discussion.

This is why I am frustrated about us not signing Drew. I hope Escobar runs with the SS position and fills that hole and Meyer fills out the rotation.


I should have read this post first. If you think the Twins are two players away from contending for the playoffs (and those two players could be Escobar and rookie Meyer instead of Trout and Kershaw), I think we must occupy different alternate universes, and thus any baseball discussion between us would be unproductive.

#78 Mr. Brooks

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Posted 09 May 2014 - 02:58 PM

And we can't have it both ways. This article is criticizing the Twins for going with aging veterans instead of prospects, a valid criticism given the Guerrier move.

But it's pretty tough to criticize the Mastro release when the Twins used that spot to pick up Kenny Wilson, a 24 year old centerfielder. They released Mastro, a guy who has lost a step and never looks to be a legitimate MLB player again, and acquired a young guy with marginal upside.

Isn't that the type of move we generally applaud?


Do you mean the same 24 year old centerfielder that they just DFA'd?

#79 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 09 May 2014 - 03:39 PM

Do you mean the same 24 year old centerfielder that they just DFA'd?


Puzzling, to say the least.

#80 Brandon

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Posted 09 May 2014 - 04:43 PM

I should have read this post first. If you think the Twins are two players away from contending for the playoffs (and those two players could be Escobar and rookie Meyer instead of Trout and Kershaw), I think we must occupy different alternate universes, and thus any baseball discussion between us would be unproductive.


I am sorry. Here, I'll be more specific. When Meyer comes up and he pitches at his potential, that would cover the pitcher in the rotation we would need.

We still need a SS. I hope Escobar can succeed and run with the SS position. If he can post a .720 OPS and play above average defense with Meyer pitching to max ability we could then compete for a wildcard. I do not think that is enough to win the division.

on offense Suzuki and Plouffe have been big surprises. Colabello and kubel as well. so with Mauer and Arcia and Willingham when they come back and potentially Parmalee again with a solid SS that only leaves an inadequate CF in the lineup. Also when Meyer gets called up we will have a rotation of Nolasco, Hughes, Gibson, Deduno, and Meyer. That is an average rotation. With our bullpen being what they are really good and an average rotation = a net slightly above average rotation. That can get us in the play offs with some luck.