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Article: Deal or No Deal: Considering Contract Extensions

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#1 Nick Nelson

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 09:01 AM

You can view the page at http://www.twinsdail...ract-Extensions

#2 tobi0040

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 09:28 AM

I agree regarding Morales and Willingham. I think Dozier gets an extension one way or another. So I think doing it now and saving a little may make sense. I think you can trade him if you have cheap options and a cheap contract woudl make him more attractive.

I agree 100% with your logic regarding Kurt, but I just dont' believe the Twins will give Pinto a shot. This is basically a throw away year and he only has caught 18 of 90 games. So I think the reality is Eric Fryer has a better shot at being our catcher next year if we don't have Kurt. So a 2/15 type deal should be explored first...he probably would turn it down anyway.

#3 TheLeviathan

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 09:45 AM

IF Morales could be signed to that deal I'd probably be open to it, but my biggest concern is easily the fact that the guy looks like he's 41 out there. He makes Willingham look like a spry chicken.

That gives me a lot of pause - the rest I'm 100% with you.

#4 diehardtwinsfan

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 09:47 AM

Disagree on Dozier. I think you lock him up cheaply. You can always move him, and he's looking like a player that will be in high demand at that point.

#5 Seth Stohs

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 10:06 AM

Is 2/15 realistic for Morales/Boras?

#6 GSM

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 10:09 AM

Morales makes absolutely no sense what so ever. This team isn't doing anything next season either, so what's the point in putting him on another bad team to take up the DH spot and thus, take AB's away from guys who will, or should be getting them. (Vargas/Pinto/Sano?)?

I wasn't on board from the get go on the signing of Morales. It's putting lipstick on a pig. This team isn't doing anything with or without him, so what's the point?

#7 Monkeypaws

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 10:11 AM

I wonder what is the best prospect Suzuki would fetch?

Would another team part with a top prospect for him?

#8 tobi0040

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 10:13 AM

Is 2/15 realistic for Morales/Boras?


Probably not. Scott is probably trying to goat us into contract talk now that will net his client more then they think he will get on the free agent market. The Pelfrey conversation started under the same premise and we were bidding against ourselves. I am confident nobody was going to offer Mike a 2 year deal.

If he really loves it here, then 2/15 would prove it. If not, this is just more Boras bologna and we should not fall for it again.

#9 Peekay175

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 10:16 AM

Why is no one talking about trading plouffe.....? He's never gonna be better than he is now and I still believe we could get a decent return for him cause he's not a terrible 3rd baseman and player. What does everyone think about that

#10 tobi0040

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 10:25 AM

Why is no one talking about trading plouffe.....? He's never gonna be better than he is now and I still believe we could get a decent return for him cause he's not a terrible 3rd baseman and player. What does everyone think about that


You can find this discussion happening here:

http://twinsdaily.co...-Trevor-Plouffe

#11 nicksaviking

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 10:39 AM

Would the idea of a Dozier extension be different if he were playing SS? Because his athleticism, arm, range and intangibles say he could. If on the off chance SS continues to be a problem for the team in 2015 and Gardy says what the hell and sticks Dozier back over there, arbitration, and an extension would become much more expensive I suspect.

#12 tobi0040

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 11:18 AM

Would the idea of a Dozier extension be different if he were playing SS? Because his athleticism, arm, range and intangibles say he could. If on the off chance SS continues to be a problem for the team in 2015 and Gardy says what the hell and sticks Dozier back over there, arbitration, and an extension would become much more expensive I suspect.


Based on Elvis Andrus 8 year, $118M deal, I think Dozier is worth about a billion dollars as a short stop (give or take a $100M)

#13 Sconnie

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 11:28 AM

Sign Suzuki if you can swing a reasonable two year deal. I don't think Pinto is viewed by the team as a catcher.

I think Pinto is primary DH in 2015 with Arcia getting games there occaisionally.

Which means don't resign Morales or Willingham.

Wait to extend Dozier. He's great, but I don't think you avoid much cost signing him now.

#14 mike wants wins

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 11:41 AM

I think Pinto is fine (not good yet) as a catcher, and can only grow by playing. I think Suzuki is bad at pitch framing (regardless of the exactness of how bad, everything indicates he is bad). Ergo, don't sign Suzuki, but, I'll say, I wouldn't pull my hair out if they did.

Morales.....not a fan of signing a pure DH on a team that is not contending, that is over 30. I'd go no. I think this more strongly than I do about Suzuki.

Willingham? No chance. None. Ok, tiny chance, your DH with 5% of the time OF, but again, not my first choice. But does anyone trust the manager not to play him in the OF? I'd probably rather have Willingham than Morales, because he has a tiny bit of positional flexibility.

Dozier? I'd sign him to an extension if he will do so reasonably, not cheaply, but reasonably.

What I just typed is probably an opinion, not a fact. I mean, I'm usually right, so you should maybe assume it is or will be a fact soon, but that's up to you. :)


#15 Brandon

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 11:48 AM

Suzuki I would sign to an extension. He does not cost too much and Pinto is the only option semi ready to replace him now. yes Pinto's got the bat but his glove is worse than Suzuki's and I guess his leadership is too as his standing with the pitchers isn't there yet.

Morales. I agree that a 1 or 2 year extension is a good idea. He'll need to really heat up in the second half and hit .300 with 15 HR if he wants a 3 year deal from anyone. not sure if I agree on your dollars though as I think it will be closer to a 2 year 18-20 million to sign him.

Willingham will be 36 next season. while someone may offer him a 2 year deal, I would be ok with a 1 year extension. no one else is ready to take over LF yet and I would rather have Hicks force the issue next time he's knocking on the door rather than have a hole there with no other options. I would not extend for 2 years. I would also be good with either Torii Hunter or Cuddyer coming back as they are free agents as well.

Dozier, depends on extension. I would do a 4 year extension with some options to gain cost control if the deal is right for both sides. but I agree it isn't necessary either.

Guerrier, I would be ok with another 1 year extension in the 1 to 2 million range maybe some incentives kicked in but no more. he has never had great peripherals but he does get results. and a good 6th inning pitcher is hard to come by. At that cost he can hold a bullpen slot until the issue is forced. we will have other openings as I agree that Swarzak has not been a great solution. he is passable and that's about it. Deunsing and Burton are going to leave eventually. But doesn't Burton have an option on his contract? I would like to see one or 2 of the young relievers in the minors come up and get a chance. Several have shown they are ready.

#16 Kwak

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 12:04 PM

Suzuki

The only guy worth paying full price. The vibes I get convince me that the Twins don't see Pinto as "the guy", and I'm inclined to agree. Make him the backup come September and all of next season. If Pinto can convince people he's a #1C, it will be easy to trade Suzuki.

Morales

What has he done that screams sign me? A .58 OPS screams "you lost your bet on me!" If the Twins believe they need a power hitter--get an OFer! The need is great and the in-house OFers are at best "iffy", generally AAAA-types. Let that collection of nags "duke it out" amongst themselves to fill the other corner--including the use of a platoon.

Willingham

!@#$ NO! Trade him for a useful part, or keep him if only junk is offered.

Dozier

I fully expect the Twins will offer him a deal, but it will likely be after next season. There isn't any rush.

#17 SD Buhr

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 12:07 PM

My problem, Nick, is we differ on the one basic premise that holds your suggestions together: That Pinto is the long term solution at catcher. I just see no evidence of that, either from Pinto when he's been behind the plate or from anything the front office has indicated about their thinking.

If he has a future in Minnesota, it's probably at DH. If he's your DH in 2015, then you sure don't want Morales around keeping him from getting PAs.

That also means you need a different answer at catcher and that makes the "NO DEAL" on Suzuki less definite. I'm all for seeing what the market for him is and if there's a good swap to be had, you do it and worry about catcher again this offseason. But basing your Suzuki decision on Pinto being your catcher is flawed thinking.

Not re-signing Willingham is a no-brainer at this point. OF and DH are going to be very crowded even without him.

With Dozier, I could be convinced either way, depending on the dollars he and his agent would command. If he's looking for really big bucks, you wait it out. Otherwise, there's little risk in an extension on a moderate contract that would be easy enough to trade, if necessary, and not debilitating to eat in a worst-case scenario.

Edited by SD Buhr, 18 July 2014 - 12:12 PM.
wow did those original paragraphs come out in a weird order


#18 jorgenswest

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 12:30 PM

More than anything else, Glen Perkins comment about Pinto seemed to sway the public opinion on Pinto. It went from needing some more work to will never be a catcher. The needing more work makes sense. He had very little time in AAA. We saw how well that went for Hicks and Parmelee.

Stating that Pinto can never be a major league catcher is quite a leap for a young player with little time to learn above AA. The Twins staff must think differently. They never tried to move him to a different position while in the minors.

It is hard to find evidence in the data that he will not improve enough defensively so that his bat can make up the difference.

He was given the job of Deduno's personal catcher this year and about half of his starts at catcher are with Deduno pitching. He didn't fare very well with Deduno. Is that surprising? An inexperienced catcher receiving a pitcher with little command. It is astounding to me that Gardenhire would think this is a good match. Deduno is a wild pitch machine and Suzuki is one of the better wild pitch preventers in the league. Matching Pinto with Deduno set both up for failure and helped to change the perception of Pinto.

If you are interested you can look at how Pinto did with other pitchers this year.

http://twinsdaily.co...ming-by-Battery

The full data is available to anyone on the Baseball Prospectus site.

After that visit Baseball Savant and look at some of the data and graphics. You can sort pitch fx data in every way one might imagine.

http://baseballsavant.com/index.php

I have captured some graphics comparing Pinto and Suzuki receiving pitches in the bottom third of the strike zone over their career. They look more similar than dissimilar. They are clearly better than Doumit. Clearly weaker than an average framer like Butera and significantly worse than a good framer like Lucroy.

#19 troyhobbs

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 12:36 PM

I sort of felt that Morales was signed as trade bait from the beginning so hopefully he starts raking and they can unload him for something good. I think the Twins will resign Suzuki but I don't think they should, Pinto can hold it down for the last leg of the season and they can sign a decent FA in the offseason for insurance. Willingham needs to go. Neutral on Dozier.

#20 halfchest

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 01:01 PM

Re: Pinto being viewed as a catcher, I think the jury is still out. I don't think the Twins sign Morales and send Pinto down if they don't think he has a chance to stick at catcher. The other factor is that Suzuki has been far better than expected so it was hard to sit him on the bench either. The team sent Pinto down to get work at Catcher and he's played half of his games there since being sent down. He played every game he played last year at Catcher in both the minors and majors.

I truly think his DH starts this year were more a result of Suzuki hitting so well then him being so awful. It will be really telling to see where he plays at Catcher the rest of this year. I think worst case the Twins think of him as a part time catcher/DH but I don't think they're abandoning hope that he could start there at some point. I guess only time will tell.

That said, I wouldn't have any problem with reupping Suzuki for another year or two. I also wouldn't mind if they trade him as long as they get one decent prospect back.

#21 jorgenswest

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 01:01 PM

Twin DHs combined for a 280/370/490 slash line before Morales joined the roster. The 860 OPS production they were getting from DH was significantly better than any other position. Second was 2B production at 784.

Teams don't have to have a dedicated DH. Rotating players through that spot can help keep the roster healthy while giving reasonable production. Without Morales, Willingham would have been used more at DH after his return. The days off in the field might have helped him keep his production at a higher level of performance.

If a team is going to devote a roster spot to a DH, they better find someone that can put up the production of an Ortiz or Thome. Is that what we can expect from Morales?

#22 Brian Mozey

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 01:07 PM

Just to let you know Suzuki wasn't a starter in the All Star Game. He caught one inning and didn't even bat.

#23 TRex

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 01:08 PM

My problem, Nick, is we differ on the one basic premise that holds your suggestions together: That Pinto is the long term solution at catcher. I just see no evidence of that, either from Pinto when he's been behind the plate or from anything the front office has indicated about their thinking.


... and do you really want your up-and-coming studs (May, Meyer, and maybe Berrios next year) pitching to someone they may not have confidence in? Young pitchers have a hard enough time throwing strikes and not nibbling on the corners.

#24 TCisNotaBear

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 01:28 PM

Disagree on Dozier. I think you lock him up cheaply. You can always move him, and he's looking like a player that will be in high demand at that point.


What is cheaply? Or better what is realistic?

#25 JB_Iowa

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 01:32 PM

Suzuki
As I've said previously I'm not dead set one way or another (trade him or extend him). I am dead set on doing SOMETHING by the end of August (and I'd really prefer it be by the trade deadline). A two year extension doesn't bother me. Three years makes me gulp. I freely acknowledge that the Twins would be buying high but in terms of $$$, I don't really think that matters.

But I will probably throw something through the TV or computer screen if they sit on their hands and don't do SOMETHING with Suzuki before 8/31.

Morales

I'd prefer he be dealt if there is any type of decent return. I will concede the possible advantage of mentoring the up and coming Latin players. I'm just not sure it outweighs the need for flexibility with the DH position as the roster is constructed.

Willingham
So long, Josh. I've enjoyed your HRs at TF.

Dozier
I don't see him ever moving back to SS. If they could get a fabulous return, the Twins should be open to a trade (I think they should ALWAYS be open to the possibility of a trade for any player). But I really don't see it happening. I also don't see any need for a mid-season extension. If they want to talk about buying out years this fall/winter, that's fine.

#26 drjim

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 01:35 PM

More than anything else, Glen Perkins comment about Pinto seemed to sway the public opinion on Pinto. It went from needing some more work to will never be a catcher. The needing more work makes sense. He had very little time in AAA. We saw how well that went for Hicks and Parmelee.

Stating that Pinto can never be a major league catcher is quite a leap for a young player with little time to learn above AA. The Twins staff must think differently. They never tried to move him to a different position while in the minors.

It is hard to find evidence in the data that he will not improve enough defensively so that his bat can make up the difference.

He was given the job of Deduno's personal catcher this year and about half of his starts at catcher are with Deduno pitching. He didn't fare very well with Deduno. Is that surprising? An inexperienced catcher receiving a pitcher with little command. It is astounding to me that Gardenhire would think this is a good match. Deduno is a wild pitch machine and Suzuki is one of the better wild pitch preventers in the league. Matching Pinto with Deduno set both up for failure and helped to change the perception of Pinto.

If you are interested you can look at how Pinto did with other pitchers this year.

http://twinsdaily.co...ming-by-Battery

The full data is available to anyone on the Baseball Prospectus site.

After that visit Baseball Savant and look at some of the data and graphics. You can sort pitch fx data in every way one might imagine.

http://baseballsavant.com/index.php

I have captured some graphics comparing Pinto and Suzuki receiving pitches in the bottom third of the strike zone over their career. They look more similar than dissimilar. They are clearly better than Doumit. Clearly weaker than an average framer like Butera and significantly worse than a good framer like Lucroy.


Good stuff.
Papers...business papers.

#27 Willihammer

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 02:04 PM

It is hard to find evidence in the data that he will not improve enough defensively so that his bat can make up the difference.


Statcorner says Pinto costs the Twins -2.87 strikes per game. They use Mike Fast's weights of about .13 runs/strike. Therefore, Pinto's bat would need to make up for over a third of a run per game.

For reference, the median catcher with >100 PAs at this point is Wilin Rosario, whose wOBA is .306.

In 241 PAs, Pinto's wOBA is .357 (about 1/3 are as DH)

He's also got a 19% HR/FB ratio (to go with a roughly average BABIP).

It all depends on where you think he'll settle as a batter I guess. Or how much you think he'll improve with the glove, but a .357 catcher is good for .204 additional runs compared to a .306 catcher, for every 4 PAs. Netting out somewhere around -.17 runs/game

Edited by Willihammer, 18 July 2014 - 02:18 PM.
math


#28 Nick Nelson

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 02:20 PM

Just to let you know Suzuki wasn't a starter in the All Star Game. He caught one inning and didn't even bat.


What I meant is that he won't want to be a backup considering that he's been a starter for most of this season and made the All-Star team in that capacity. Sorry if that was confusing.

My problem, Nick, is we differ on the one basic premise that holds your suggestions together: That Pinto is the long term solution at catcher.


He might not be, but I would take my chances on him over the next several years rather than Suzuki. He's way younger, he's going to be a much better hitter, and I don't believe the defensive difference will be THAT great when you account for the fact that Pinto is still learning and Suzuki (who I don't view as a top-notch backstop) is aging into his 30s.

#29 jorgenswest

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 02:28 PM

Statcorner says Pinto costs the Twins -2.87 strikes per game. They use Mike Fast's weights of about .13 runs/strike. Therefore, Pinto's bat would need to make up for over a third of a run per game.

For reference, the median catcher with >100 PAs at this point is Wilin Rosario, whose wOBA is .306.

In 241 PAs, Pinto's wOBA is .357 (about 1/3 are as DH)

He's also got a 19% HR/FB ratio (to go with a roughly average BABIP).

It all depends on where you think he'll settle as a batter I guess. Or how much you think he'll improve with the glove, but a .357 catcher is good for .204 additional runs compared to a .306 catcher, for every 4 PAs. Netting out somewhere around -.17 runs/game


It is possible to go deeper on BP or baseball savant. How much of the stat corner is related to catching Deduno? It can be isolated with more detail. I tried to show that with the split by battery.

#30 h2oface

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 02:31 PM

I love it. Suzuki playing great at an iron man 30, a leader, and might slink back to .274 (or even .250 let's say). How many times have I wished the Twins had a catcher that would hit that other than Mauer is off the scale. I say deal..... and if you must, trade Pinto. I see Mitch Garver as the future Twins catcher, with Stuart Turner in the back up maybe as soon as 2016. Both Johnny Bench finalists in 2013 with Turner the winner. Real catchers. Garver has the bat, though, as well. Pinto still hasn't proven he can hit in the show, or catch very well...... and how about those throws to second? Pinto will be a DH at best, and if the Twins really do have the studs as promoted and believed by all of baseball....... they will need the DH to keep some of those guys in the order when not on the field.

Morales...... playing horrible, and a tubby out of shape 31...... but he is a keeper? Not in my book. Get all you can for him. Hopefully other GM's will think the same thing as Nick, but I think they are wrong, and Kendrys has shown the best he has and is on a quick regression out of the game.
To keep him seems a lot like Gardenhire's thinking coming out of spring training. Unfortunaltey for this fan..... Nick's predictions are probably right, even if it is for all the wrong reasons for me.

Dozier has been amazing, but "already become a great player"? Great is taking on a new meaning in this twitter age, i guess. I have to reserve great for greatness, and that only comes with consistent performance over a much longer span of time. There is plenty of time to decide what Dozier's future is, and he will have his own decisions to make as well.

Edited by h2oface, 18 July 2014 - 04:14 PM.