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Article: Kurt Suzuki Signs Extension With Twins

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#31 CRArko

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 04:23 PM

If framing is so important, is is possible catchers could improve at it?
 
Maybe watch tapes of the Molina brothers?


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#32 LaBombo

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 04:26 PM

It's still an option regardless. Even if it doesn't vest, we should be able to pick it up.

True, but only if FO and manager are on the same page.  If there is uncertainty looming with the GM position, it would be easy to see Gardy getting Zukesie paid no matter what.


#33 JB_Iowa

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 04:28 PM

  1. Kurt Suzuki's 3rd-year option would vest with 485 plate appearances in 2016, per person with direct knowledge.

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#34 drjim

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 04:34 PM

 

  1. Kurt Suzuki's 3rd-year option would vest with 485 plate appearances in 2016, per person with direct knowledge.

 

 

That is a decent amount of PA for a catcher. If he hits that, he probably deserves a one year, $6 mil deal.

Papers...business papers.

#35 Monkeypaws

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 04:34 PM

I could see Suzuki 60/40 with Pinto next year, 40/60 the next, if he declines and Pinto improves. Or 70/30.

 

It seems like this contract gives the Twins a nice out if he declines.


#36 teekz

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 04:37 PM

You think they signed him for that much to be the backup? I think this shows that they have no faith that Pinto can be a major league starting catcher.
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#37 Shane Wahl

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 04:40 PM

It isn't clear why anyone supports this.


#38 drjim

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 04:41 PM

It isn't clear why anyone supports this.

 

#analysis

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Papers...business papers.

#39 John Bonnes

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 04:49 PM

Play nice, guys.

 

We got more contract details on that 3rd year from Berardino.

 

Update 5:46 PM: The options vests at 485 plate appearances, which would require Suzuki to play about 125 games. And there is no guaranteed money for the 3rd year. This contract continues to be more attractive to the Twins than I expected.  


#40 KGB

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 05:02 PM

Just another missed opportunity, followed up by a bad contract to an aging player.  Can't believe they couldn't get a decent prospect for him, Dodger have 2 catchers batting below .200.  Instead of trading him when he has value (like Willingham a couple years ago), we sign him for 2 more years and hope he beats the odds and becomes the rare catcher who improves in his 30's.  $6 to $7 million to Suzuki, Willingham, Correia & Pelfrey and none of them are tradable.  This front office needs to go.


#41 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 05:11 PM

It isn't clear why anyone supports this.

 

Inversely, it isn't clear why you're so dead-set against it when the Twins have no other viable catchers in the organization right now.

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#42 Thegrin

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 05:22 PM

You think they signed him for that much to be the backup? I think this shows that they have no faith that Pinto can be a major league starting catcher.

 

As I've stated before. I think Pinto the catcher is not going to be Major League ready in 2015, if ever.  Almost every day I check the Rochester Box Score.  Pinto plays as DH far too often.

 

Look at what we have as Catchers in the minors.  After Fryer, Pinto & Hermann we have a few years to wait for help from the Twins organization.

Rochester:

Josmil Pinto  .873 OPS

Chris Herrmann  .882

Eric Fryer       .658 OPS (Twins)

Dan Rohlfing ,658 OPS

 

New Britain

Matt Koch       .589 OPS

Jairo Rodriguez  .442 OPS, 26 AB

Kyle Knudson      .478 OPS

 

Ft Myers         

Alex Swim       .667 OPS, 3 AB

Stuart Turner  ..684 OPS

Jairo Rodriguez   .589 OPS, 68 AB

Tyler Grimes         .571 OPS

 

Cedar Rapids

Alex Swim        .775 OPS

Mitch Garver    ..876 OPS

Michael Quesada .662 OPS (Eliz)

 

I used this to find them.  http://twinsdaily.co...ters[52][est]=1

 

 

 

 

 

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#43 teekz

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 05:22 PM

Inversely, it isn't clear why you're so dead-set against it when the Twins have no other viable catchers in the organization right now.


Totally agree! Isn't our best catching prospect right now in Ft. Myers? That is 2-3 years from getting here. Right as Suzuki's contract is expiring, we'll have a replacement.
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#44 drivlikejehu

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 05:24 PM

We don't know what, if anything, other clubs offered for Suzuki. But this deal is pointless - no one was going to throw big money at Suzuki in the off-season. So for no benefit, the Twins get the risk that Suzuki craters and/or gets hurt.

 

This is just another one of the little mistakes (timing in this case) that the Twins constantly make, putting them at a huge, quite possibly insurmountable disadvantage compared to well-run clubs.


#45 jorgenswest

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 05:30 PM

I don't see how a Ryan could have managed this better.

He waited as long as possible to get a return in trade. Absent a reasonable return, he signed Suzuki to a deal that slots between their 2014 commitments to Correia and Willingham. Would there have been a better use of a 2/12 commitment in the winter?
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#46 JB_Iowa

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 05:36 PM

This is about how the Twins view Pinto and, I suppose to a lesser extent, Fryer but I don't think anybody ever thought of him or Herrmann as 1st stringers.

 

It just looks to me like they don't have any faith in Pinto as a starting catcher.  If that's the case, then the Suzuki move makes absolute sense because it will be 2 years (or close to that) before any of the catchers at the lower levels will be ready to taste the majors.

 

Given what is expected to be on the trade market this winter, they decided not to have to worry about it.


#47 drivlikejehu

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 05:40 PM

Your last paragraph is debatable at best. I would call it ridiculous hyperbole.

 

The results speak for themselves.


#48 stringer bell

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 06:13 PM

486 PAs is a high number for a catcher. I sincerely hope that he doesn't get that number of PAs in 2016.
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#49 SpiritofVodkaDave

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 06:14 PM

6 million a year for two years is pretty damn minimal, especially when you consider how low the twins payroll is currently and moving forward, even more when you consider we are about to have our best prospect class in a decade all up in the next year and a half. Even more when you consider that outside of an Ace type pitcher and SS that C is by far the weakest position this org has.

Even if Suzuki bombs which I find highly highly unlikely, it's all good, he will literally represent 5-7.5% of the payroll during his time here. Conversely this move could be a real steal for the twins, just like the milone trade! Terry did it once with prospects (Mauer, cuddyer, Morneau, hunter, dougie, koskie etc) and shrewd trades....he can do it again!!!
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#50 SpiritofVodkaDave

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 06:15 PM

486 PAs is a high number for a catcher. I sincerely hope that he doesn't get that number of PAs in 2016.


If he does it probably means he is hitting like he is this year, which is fine by me. Though that also means pinto never stepped up to be at least a part time catcher which makes me a sad panda.
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#51 tobi0040

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 06:22 PM

It isn't clear why anyone supports this.

In a world where the Twins have absolutely no trust in Pinto (reality), I don't get the negativity here.

 

#1 Take a look at the free agent catchers next year.  Russell Martin is the only catcher that is clearly better than Suzuki.  I would welcome the signing, but you are talking 3-4 years and more a year, minimum and it is doubtful he would sign here anyway.  Most on the market are 34-38 years old.

 

#2 We have no other internal candidates that are even half as good as Suzuki's career averages.

 

#3  2/12 is not a lot of money, especially given where payroll will be.

 

So I get the sell high meme and that Suzuki won't be this good over the next two years.  But I would like to see the naysayers suggest a plan B that is better and Pinto is not realistic given the organization.  I think the realistic alternatives are Eric Fryer gets 500 AB's next year or we go out and sign someone like Gerald Laird for the same deal we just gave Suzuki, or something close enough like 2-8 or 2-10.

 

My last thought, I am no expert on how a catcher handles the staff (pep talks, preparation, leadership, not framing).  Not even close.  But if Pinto is half as bad as Perkins, TR, and the staff make him out to be, Suzuki working with Meyer and May is worth $6M alone.

Edited by tobi0040, 31 July 2014 - 06:25 PM.


#52 DJSim22

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 06:25 PM

Great move for the price and gives May, Meyer, Berrios and others a legit vet catcher to throw to. 

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#53 stringer bell

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 06:33 PM

Pinto is a catcher. I doubt his bat plays as a DH. I think the angst over Pinto's defense is overblown. The scouting report coming in to the season was that Pinto has a good bat, needs work on his receiving skills, but had a good arm and is a hard worker. Well, he got into a funk defensively. Haven't we seen other young players come up and look bad?

IMHO, what is wrong with Pinto can be fixed and he presents assets of being a good hitter with plus power. I disagree with the comment above about him DHing too often. He plays every day and is the DH on occasion, nothing wrong with that. From what I've seen, Pinto hasn't presided over a bunch of bad pitching.
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#54 Thrylos

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 06:37 PM

I don't like this for many reasons:

 

a. They could have traded him and signed him in October as a free agent & gotten something (heck, if one can get Tommy Milone for Sam Fuld, one can do better with Suzuki.)

b. This reminds me of the Doumit & Capps extensions.  A lot.

c. Suzuki has a career season.  This can happen, but looking at the data, it sounds pretty week:

 

- His numbers are driven by:

 

1. a career high BABIP (.324, about 80 points over his last 4 seasons average).  If you compare his batted balls to the last few seasons, you will see that the highest change is his  GB/FB from around .90 average the 3 previous seasons to 1.32.  So he is hitting more ground balls and they go through more.  Not sustainable. 

 

2.  Almost double BB/K compared to the last 3 seasons' average.  This one might be sustainable.  Older players walk more and hit fewer home runs (and Suzuki is right on bulls eye on both)

 

d. His defense, according to most objective measures (and the eyeball test as far as passed balls and throwing to CF during stealing attempts go) despite what Perkins said and vague remarks by beat writers, is not that better than Pinto's, while his bat is much worse and he will be blocking Pinto.  Unlike some, I believe in Pinto's ability as a catcher, based on what I have seen from him year after year and based on his work ethic (which is exalted even by the people who sent him to the minors.)

 

If Suzuki repeats the first half of this season (Have 2 more career seasons, i.e. best case scenario.)  this contract will be ok (but still blocking a better potentially all around catcher.)  If Suzuki returns to his norm, which is a step above Butera's with the stick, he will be a $6M no glove backup who will get playing time because of his $.

 

This is why I don't like that extension in (not) a few words.

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#55 drjim

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 06:41 PM

The results speak for themselves.

 

Small sample size. In three years when the cycles change a little does that mean some front offices got smarter and others dumber.

 

I don't buy this line of argument at all. But if you don't like a move, and clearly many people don't agree with you, there has to be something more substantive than hitting the hyperbole machine.

Papers...business papers.

#56 drjim

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 06:48 PM

Pinto is a catcher. I doubt his bat plays as a DH. I think the angst over Pinto's defense is overblown. The scouting report coming in to the season was that Pinto has a good bat, needs work on his receiving skills, but had a good arm and is a hard worker. Well, he got into a funk defensively. Haven't we seen other young players come up and look bad?

IMHO, what is wrong with Pinto can be fixed and he presents assets of being a good hitter with plus power. I disagree with the comment above about him DHing too often. He plays every day and is the DH on occasion, nothing wrong with that. From what I've seen, Pinto hasn't presided over a bunch of bad pitching.

 

I don't think the Twins have given up on Pinto as a catcher, I just don't think they were comfortable going into next year as the primary option. 

 

A reasonable comp I can think of is what the Reds did with Harigan and Mesoraco. Harigan and Suzuki are obviously different types of catchers, but the thinking can be the same. Broke Mesoraco in slowly, and they moved Harigan out of the way at a good time and Mesoraco thrived.

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#57 drjim

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 06:52 PM

I don't like this for many reasons:

 

a. They could have traded him and signed him in October as a free agent & gotten something (heck, if one can get Tommy Milone for Sam Fuld, one can do better with Suzuki.)

b. This reminds me of the Doumit & Capps extensions.  A lot.

c. Suzuki has a career season.  This can happen, but looking at the data, it sounds pretty week:

 

- His numbers are driven by:

 

1. a career high BABIP (.324, about 80 points over his last 4 seasons average).  If you compare his batted balls to the last few seasons, you will see that the highest change is his  GB/FB from around .90 average the 3 previous seasons to 1.32.  So he is hitting more ground balls and they go through more.  Not sustainable. 

 

2.  Almost double BB/K compared to the last 3 seasons' average.  This one might be sustainable.  Older players walk more and hit fewer home runs (and Suzuki is right on bulls eye on both)

 

d. His defense, according to most objective measures (and the eyeball test as far as passed balls and throwing to CF during stealing attempts go) despite what Perkins said and vague remarks by beat writers, is not that better than Pinto's, while his bat is much worse and he will be blocking Pinto.  Unlike some, I believe in Pinto's ability as a catcher, based on what I have seen from him year after year and based on his work ethic (which is exalted even by the people who sent him to the minors.)

 

If Suzuki repeats the first half of this season (Have 2 more career seasons, i.e. best case scenario.)  this contract will be ok (but still blocking a better potentially all around catcher.)  If Suzuki returns to his norm, which is a step above Butera's with the stick, he will be a $6M no glove backup who will get playing time because of his $.

 

This is why I don't like that extension in (not) a few words.

 

I think this is the right counterpoint.

 

Twins never extended Capps in season, they retained him (foolishly) on one year deals.

 

The Doumit extension is a decent comp. He struggled his next year, but they did flip him after a year for a return that is probably similar to what Suzuki would probably have brought back at this deadline. That is far from a disaster.

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#58 jorgenswest

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 08:00 PM

The Burton extension was also similar getting two years into his 30s.

Rationally, I know that Suzuki will both regress and decline. I know that there are questions about his defense that likely discouraged some teams from pursuing him strongly.

... and I still like the move though it goes beyond reason. I think Ryan managed this well. I enjoy watching Suzuki play ball and find myself optimistic about the deal.

Of course, I wrote almost the same thing about the Morales signing.

For some reason I like this move.

I can't imagine it has more than a 1 win impact.

I know that they could have filled the spot with a third catcher and played Pinto regularly.

I know this means Willingham is stuck in LF. He will wear down and his performance will drop possibly costing the win they gained.

I know Morales will be elsewhere next year and really won't be very marketable this year.

I know you don't rebuild by fielding your oldest team in the last two decades. Morales adds to the record number of players in their 30s the Twins have used this year.

... and I still like the move when it goes against reason.

Intellectually, it makes so much more sense to build the next winning team. As a regular viewer and listener, I seem to care more about the ever so small increase in likelihood that they will win the next game.


Maybe I will be 1 for 2.
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#59 Trautmann13

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 08:18 PM

Heres the thing, I hope this team is smart enough to swap Pinto/Suzuki if either

 

A. Suzuki reverts back to his former self

B. Pinto proves he can be a starting catcher in the bigs

 

I don't know if this organization is smart, though


#60 JB_Iowa

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 08:25 PM

Heres the thing, I hope this team is smart enough to swap Pinto/Suzuki if either

 

A. Suzuki reverts back to his former self

B. Pinto proves he can be a starting catcher in the bigs

 

I don't know if this organization is smart, though

 

I know -- and really that is the biggest "Con" of this deal for me.  We know how enamored Gardenhire is of veterans and if he is the manager, it just seems like he's going to stick with Suzuki.




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