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How much credit does Anderson get for Hughes

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#1 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 10:06 AM

Most of us have been hard on Anderson and for good reason. Most of the Twins' starters have underperformed in the past 3+ seasons and the rotation has been dreadful.

With that said, how much credit do you give Anderson for turning around Phil Hughes? Obviously, most of the credit goes to Phil because he's the one throwing the ball but I believe some credit should go to Rick for helping him establish consistency, change his approach, and stick with it. Hughes has spent the past 3-4 seasons changing his approach every few months and seeing mixed success. Now it appears that he found something that works and has stuck with it for the first 13 starts of the season.

I've said that if there's one coach I would consider firing it's Anderson but I have to admit that he's done a phenomenal job with Hughes, a player with immense talent and not enough confidence in his stuff.

#2 Badsmerf

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 10:22 AM

How do you know it is Anderson and not someone else? I don't think Phil Hughes doing well covers up the flawed philosophy he pushes. He wouldn't be an MLB coach if he was terrible. I just feel like his time has come and gone.
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#3 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 10:27 AM

How do you know it is Anderson and not someone else? I don't think Phil Hughes doing well covers up the flawed philosophy he pushes. He wouldn't be an MLB coach if he was terrible. I just feel like his time has come and gone.


Well, if we bash him for his failures of the past, it's only fair to congratulate for his successes.

Most of the responsibility falls on the player throwing the ball but if we take a coach to task for players bombing out of baseball under his tutelage, he should get a pat on the back for struggling pitchers who turn into a fringe Cy Young candidate under his watch.

#4 ashburyjohn

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 10:33 AM

fringe Cy Young candidate


I really hope no fans of other teams run across this side comment and make fun of us for how low our standards have sunk. :)

#5 gunnarthor

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 10:41 AM

I think Anderson does a fine job with the talent he is given. How do we not know he didn't get them to overachieve? A 100+ ERA from Cole De Vries? 2.4 WAR season from Diamond? Duduno isn't completely useless. Rehabbed Burton and Fein.

#6 Dman

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 10:43 AM

I am of the opinion that coaching has fairly limited influence on players. I don't buy into the line of thinking that coaching changes the player all that much. If coaching was the key then everyone in the Dodgers system should be pitching close to the same as Clayton Kershaw. They have the same coaches the same system etc. and yet only one Kershaw. Why? Talent. He has a rare talent that few posses.

Certainly he has been coached throughout his career on how to throw etc but by the time he hits the big leagues he doesn't need much coaching as he is a coach unto himself. He knows what he needs to do and now he needs to execute it. You can mess with mechanics and have thoughts and theories but in the end it is the pitcher and the thing between his ears that is important. There is only so much you can teach. If there was a pitching coach that turned everyone into Kershaw then by all means give them credit. Otherwise it appears to me that a pitching coach is a pitching coach is a pitching coach IMO.

I will agree that the people who think Mr. Anderson sucked ala Liriano need to buck up and give him credit for Hughes.

#7 Kirby_waved_at_me

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 10:43 AM

I think a new player coming to a new team will benefit from the coaches there. Having a new perspective, an opposing scouting report, just getting feedback that is different from the philosophy of your former coaches can help a player gain some insight they wouldn't have with the same opinions over and over.
I'd like to see that level of sucess for every new Twins pitcher before giving Anderson a lot of the credit, but I certainly see how having another opinion can help Hughes make a more informed choice.
A few of the articles I've read recently talk about how Hughes likes to tinker with his approach and try different things to find what works, so moving to a new team is a great way to do that.

#8 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 10:54 AM

I really hope no fans of other teams run across this side comment and make fun of us for how low our standards have sunk. :)


It's not that our standards are so low, it's that Hughes has been that good. Following a very unlucky April (xFIP 3.69, ERA 5.14), he has an ERA just over 2 and an xFIP of ~3.25).

#9 Boom Boom

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 10:54 AM

Like, 99.9999%. Moar pitch-to-contact!

But seriously, if Anderson gets credit for turning around Hughes, does that mean that the pitching coach in NY was really bad?

#10 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 10:55 AM

But seriously, if Anderson gets credit for turning around Hughes, does that mean that the pitching coach in NY was really bad?


I think the NYY pitching staff is somewhat responsible for Hughes' struggles. No coaching staff in their right mind is going to allow a guy to drop and add a pitch on a whim and that's exactly what Hughes did from 2009-2013.

#11 Boom Boom

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 10:57 AM

I think the NYY pitching staff is somewhat responsible for Hughes' struggles. No coaching staff in their right mind is going to allow a guy to drop and add a pitch on a whim and that's exactly what Hughes did from 2009-2013.


Maybe not, but they can't force him to throw a pitch he doesn't want to.

I mean, no coaching staff in their right mind would allow a guy to drop switch-hitting in the major leagues during the season, right?

#12 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 10:58 AM

I mean, no coaching staff in their right mind would allow a guy to drop switch-hitting in the major leagues during the season, right?


No. No, they wouldn't.

#13 SpiritofVodkaDave

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 11:01 AM

I think I deserve the credit, I had been calling for the twins to trade (and years later) sign Hughes for years. Saw him pitch a lot in NY, always had the stuff, just never lived up to the pressure of being the future ace hall of famer of the Yankees.

I still think we could turn Joba into something useful as well

#14 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 11:02 AM

I think I deserve the credit, I had been calling for the twins to trade (and years later) sign Hughes for years. Saw him pitch a lot in NY, always had the stuff, just never lived up to the pressure of being the future ace hall of famer of the Yankees.


Then I get credit as well. I wanted to see the Twins acquire Hughes more than any other pitcher in baseball.

We'll share credit, Dave. I get 51%, you get 49%.

#15 Boom Boom

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 11:02 AM

I guess we'll never know, but it's probably a combination of things. Maybe Andy has tweaked Hughesie's mechanics a bit. Maybe he's just healthier than he has been previously. Maybe it's the ballpark. Maybe there's something to that whole "out of the NY media meat-grinder" thing.

My suspicion is that Hughes has been somewhat luckier than he was in NY. As good as he's pitched, I'm not convinced he'll be able to keep going at this pace.

#16 big dog

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 11:03 AM

I will agree that the people who think Mr. Anderson sucked ala Liriano need to buck up and give him credit for Hughes.


Yeah, people were quick to heap praise on the Pirate's pitching coach last year when Liriano went on one of his incredibly hot streaks. Now he's had a poor year and is back on the DL. That's probably Anderson's fault again. I certainly don't think the Twins have had enough pitching, and he's by no means blameless, but not everything's his fault.

As mentioned previously, when someone like Lohse leaves and then improves, even a little, it's used as an indictment of Anderson. If that's the rather tenuous level of analysis used, it's got to work both directions. Personally, I think humans are pretty complicated and I think coaches are like CEOs- too much blame when things go badly and too much credit when things go well.

#17 ALessKosherScott

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 11:12 AM

How do you know it is Anderson and not someone else? I don't think Phil Hughes doing well covers up the flawed philosophy he pushes. He wouldn't be an MLB coach if he was terrible. I just feel like his time has come and gone.


When a pitcher has a BB/9 rate that starts with a 0, that's a vintage sign that Anderson had something to do with it. Then again, Target Field not being the band box that Yankee Stadium is also has something to do with it.

When it's all said and done, if the Twins wanted to go out and find more former top prospects and try and do similar things with them next year, I wouldn't mind.

#18 mike wants wins

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 11:14 AM

Does he also get credit for Nolasco? Coaches make a difference, no idea how much.

#19 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 11:17 AM

Does he also get credit for Nolasco?


Absolutely. That's my point, really.

#20 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 11:18 AM

Then again, Target Field not being the band box that Yankee Stadium is also has something to do with it.


Oddly enough, Hughes has been much better on the road.