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Article: Only One Spot to Address for 2015?

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#61 drjim

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 11:20 AM

If possible there is no roster reason to not add a pitcher that would be the best pitcher on the staff.  It might not make financial sense to spend 150M on a pitcher but this team sorely lacks a #1/2 and likely will for quite awhile.  Considering that the Twins have so many pre arb players set to start with more prospects ready to fill and a low payroll for the next few seasons there is money available to burn.  Better to concentrate that money in one great pitcher than spreading it around to several maybe decent players.

 

I certainly agree with this.

 

And I would take it further and say that if they don't go for a really good pitcher, they shouldn't bother. They have plenty of 3, 4, 5 guys ready to pitch.

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#62 drjim

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 11:22 AM

At some point you have to start earning more playing time. He has ~800 PAs over the past three years of mid 80s OPS+. He'll be 27 next year. Going into 2015 planning on him manning a corner spot is wishful thinking, IMO.

 

I would say beyond wishful thinking.

 

He almost certainly won't remain on the 40 man.

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#63 Shane Wahl

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 11:31 AM

Uh, this current roster is not responsible for another 90 loss season. The Twins are 10-13 in August, I think, and would be 11-12 if not for Perkins blowing last night's save. And the point is that the young guys are going to be better overall. Nolasco simply can't be this terrible again and they are going to be adding Meyer.

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#64 drjim

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 11:32 AM

Dave Martinez.

One of Melky Cabrera, Nelson Cruz, Yazmani Tomas, or Nic Markakis (if he makes it to free agency).

One of Max Scherzer or Jon Lester.

I'd kick the tires on Hanley Ramirez.

I'd ask the Dodgers about a trade for one of their outfielders if they're looking to dump salary.

I'd ask Cincinnati about Latos.

Just off the top of my head. Obviously they're not going to do all those, but the point is, talent will change teams this winter. Go get some.

 

I think Scherzer and Lester are wishful thinking for a team in the Twins revenue class, don't want Cabrera or Cruz (for the contracts they'll get), don't think Markakis gets to free agency.

 

Beyond that I would certainly be on board with this plan. I do think Ramirez gets a mildly shocking contract.

 

I endorse Martinez. I would go after Tomas. I do think Latos could be had, but not sure what it would take. I highly endorse the Dodgers idea.

 

I still would be hesitant to move a top ten prospect this offseason other than Rosario, and I don't think he has much value. The exception would be for a starter to control for at least three years.

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#65 mike wants wins

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 11:35 AM

Ah, I forgot Tomas.....I'd go hard after him also. No idea what it would take to get him......

Lighten up Francis....

#66 drjim

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 11:41 AM

this made me laugh out loud in pleasure, thank you.....

 

Again, I was responding to someone saying "it can't be as bad as last year", as did two others, I note....

 

I have not spent hours researching minor leaguers and rosters, so I can't really offer a good trade scenario.....but I'd certainly consider dealing for a SS, LF, CF (shorter term), 3B, C (I don't believe in Suzuki), SP.

 

With the information I have:

I'd probably actually roll with the starters they have, IF I knew more about Meyer and his readiness. Since we have no actual clue if he's ready for the majors (if only there was a way to gather that data this year.......), I'd sign someone at least as good as Shields. I'd prefer to go more elite, but I'd settle for Shields or better. I'd offer 3-5 years, depending on which guy it is, and I'd offer the going rate for that quality.

I'd sign Melky Cabrera to play LF. 

I'd gut the bullpen other than Perkins and, um, not sure 2 others, your choice, and replace them with guys from the minors, or players from other teams that HAVE OPTIONS so I can manipulate my roster better. Frankly, it is time to see Guerra, Tonkin, Oliverous (sp?), Acther, and???? up here in the pen. I'd certainly hope Burdi is ready next year.

I'd promote Alex Meyer day 1. 

Day 1 rotation: New guy, Gibson, Hughes, Meyer, Nolasco (alphabetical listing)

I'd see if Boston wants to deal one of their spare OF for a minor league pitcher in the Twins system (not Stewart or Berrios). The only reason to collect excess pieces is to deal them ......and prospects are worth more before they have their warts exposed.

I'd promote Pinto and have him catch 40-50% of the time.

I'd decide if Santana is a SS or CF this year, and play him AT THAT POSITION now, and next year.

I'd either cut, trade, or move Pelfrey to long relief or another BP spot.

 

with what I don't know:

If they think Sano or Buxton is not here next year.......I'd probably roll with Plouffe, but not be thrilled about it. I'd keep Santana in CF, and when Buxton does come up (if Danny has been good or better) move him to LF.

i'd promote Hicks ASAP, and see if this improvement looks real, I don't care about the minor league playoffs

If Meyer is not ready in their mind, I'd consider signing another SP in addition to the really good one.

 

That's off the top of my head....I am at work and all......and, if I really had control, I'd probably do more, but I was trying to be somewhat realistic....as if it was the Twins, and not the Twins with Mike in charge (which would likely be a disaster).

 

I like the casualness of stating "I would consider dealing for a C, SS, CF, 3B, SP". The Twins and every other team in baseball...

 

And the "I would settle for Shields". That is good stuff. Good to know you would settle for a top 20-30 starter in the game.

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#67 Shane Wahl

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 11:42 AM

For people talking trades, it seems to me that the clearest contenders to be traded from depth are Eddie Rosario, Travis Harrison, Tyler Jones, and Tyler Duffey. One of those position players and one of those pitchers might get you something nice (an LF or an SP).

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#68 mike wants wins

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 11:45 AM

My point on Shields is that I'd not go lower than him, I thought that was clear, apparently not, so to be more clear....... that is as low as I'd go in terms of "how elite" a SP I'd sign.

 

Not sure what more to say on the trade part, I think I made it clear that I don't have any interest in spending hours of time looking at every system out there....but if I was actually the GM, I'd do that, and I'd target those areas as areas of improvement for sure.

Lighten up Francis....

#69 Platoon

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 11:46 AM

Well, it wouldn't be a clone. Buxton, Sano and Meyer -- the org's three best prospects -- are all expected to debut next year, which is kind of a big deal. Berrios (now the No.4 prospect?) also has a decent chance to enter the mix. And you've got some younger players hopefully improving.
 
Even if there's some regression (obviously there are a few clear candidates) I have a hard time imagining that next year could possibly be as depressing as the last few unless there's a big rash of injuries. The excitement generated by the big-name prospects will change the game.


I agree with the excitement part of this comment... And with the regression part.... But might I add, that the Twins historically do not make any changes until a third of the year is gone. Ergo, Buxton, Sano, Berrios et al might get here when we are 8 out already. It seems the list of SP is about 8 deep, pick any 5 you like. None at this time are deemed expert at missing bats. Something has to be done to improve the defense on the left side. And since Santanna is really never going to be the future CF, it borders on criminal the he is killing time out there. Put Parm in left, Shaefer in center, Santanna at SS, for the balance of the year. You get to evaluate Parm and Santanna at once. After those assessments are made you can then decide what you need. But right now as the lineup reads, you need a SS with range, a center fielder who is actually an outfielder, an a LF who can catch some of the many batted balls the aforementioned SP staff is assured of supplying.

#70 toosweet64

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 11:47 AM

One likely fact that has yet to be offered here is that the Twins are going to likely be losing nearly 50% (if not more) of their season tickets holders moving into next year, including me in that list. Thus, the revenue streams from tickets sales will be drying up and the last thing the Pohlads will look to do is spend more money. Scherzer, Lester, Price, or any other potential top of the rotation starter isn't coming here. Especially after this Nolasco debacle. After the All-Star game, this club simply has nothing to offer the fans except the hope that they've been ramming down our throats for the past 3+ years. And until they put some of that hope on an actual MLB field, the fans are even less likely to care. If you field that same lineup listed in the intro to this discussion with the same current manager, be prepared to see crowds of 10k at Target Field and another 90 loss season.
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#71 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 11:53 AM

Prospects are the currency of baseball. Why not use both our depth of prospects and available money to upgrade the team? Go after a Lester (who won't cost a draft pick) and then turn around and trade Meyer+ for an offensive upgrade?

Now is not the time to trade prospects. It might take Buxton or Sano 1-2 years to get up to speed. One of them might fail. One of them might get injured.

 

You trade prospects when you're an 80 win team pushing for the playoffs, not when you're a 73 win team trying to get its feet back under itself.

 

Any veterans traded for today might be gone and/or ineffective by the time the Twins are ready to compete. It's a mistake to give up prospects you might need later when there are still so many question marks in the near future.

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#72 Boom Boom

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 11:53 AM

For people talking trades, it seems to me that the clearest contenders to be traded from depth are Eddie Rosario, Travis Harrison, Tyler Jones, and Tyler Duffey. One of those position players and one of those pitchers might get you something nice (an LF or an SP).

 

I'd add Pinto to that list.

 

Not that I think he should be traded... but I feel like the Twins are throwing in the towel on him ever being their catcher, and they've got DH shored up for a while.

Edited by Boom Boom, 27 August 2014 - 11:56 AM.


#73 mike wants wins

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 11:58 AM

Now is not the time to trade prospects. It might take Buxton or Sano 1-2 years to get up to speed. One of them might fail. One of them might get injured.

 

You trade prospects when you're an 80 win team pushing for the playoffs, not when you're a 73 win team trying to get its feet back under itself.

 

Any veterans traded for today might be gone and/or ineffective by the time the Twins are ready to compete. It's a mistake to give up prospects you might need later when there are still so many question marks in the near future.

 

so, punt next year and the year after on being over 80 wins? I'm just trying to understand....you are saying they will not be ready to compete in 2015 or 2016, correct?

Lighten up Francis....

#74 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 12:02 PM

so, punt next year and the year after on being over 80 wins? I'm just trying to understand....you are saying they will not be ready to compete in 2015 or 2016, correct?

I said nothing about acquiring free agents to make the team better, only that it's a mistake to give away internal pieces in the middle of a rebuild process.

 

If the money and need is there, go find a decent free agent. I absolutely believe that's a good idea. I simply don't believe the Twins are currently in the position to trade away farm pieces they might need in 2016 if something goes wrong with their current batch of upper-minors prospects (not to mention that trading a prospect during 2016 might not push them into the 88 win territory but instead the 92 win territory).

 

If the Twins find themselves in contention, a mid-season trade can always happen in June or July.

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#75 diehardtwinsfan

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 12:04 PM

so, punt next year and the year after on being over 80 wins? I'm just trying to understand....you are saying they will not be ready to compete in 2015 or 2016, correct?

 

Brock is saying that trading prospects will likely delay the time when this team will be cometitive again, not improve it.  One guy isn't going to make this team a contender, and by trading away prospects, you trade away the guys who will likely help aid contention down the road, thus delaying it.  

 

I'd add that while you would settle for Sheilds, that doesn't mean that there's going to be guys better than that available.  You won't build a contender by a few FA signings and trading for some prospects.  It doesn't happen very often. 

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#76 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 12:07 PM

I'd add that while you would settle for Sheilds, that doesn't mean that there's going to be guys better than that available.  You won't build a contender by a few FA signings and trading for some prospects.  It doesn't happen very often. 

Yep. Sustained success comes through a solid foundation. Signing free agents does not build a solid foundation. Trading prospects for veterans does not build a solid foundation. Both should be used as complementary pieces for an already-solid foundation of young MLB talent from the farm.

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#77 TheLeviathan

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 12:09 PM

I don't think you can really look at this issue without laying out where regression is likely to take hold.  So, from my perspective:

 

Likely increases in production: 1B, RF, DH, SP (as a whole, but probably a marginal increase)

 

Likely decreases in production: SS, CF, C, RP

 

Likely similar: LF, 2B, 3B

 

So, if I were the Twins I'd be concentrating on places to bring that production up.  To do that I'd start by moving Santana to SS and looking for one placeholder OF and one permanent fixture OF.  I'd also get into talks with a guy like Shields and try to land him.  I'd trust that 3B and CF (in two years) will be boosted by our young studs.

 

I wouldn't, however, start convincing myself we're about to contend.  Some of these positions are tied up largely by the name in the spot and not the reasonable expectations for production.  Just because the corner is looking turned doesn't mean the team is going to play any better.  Young kids need time to struggle and adjust.  (See: Arcia)  Just be patient.

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#78 Shane Wahl

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 12:10 PM

I don't know about all of this. This year is indeed ending differently than the last few. Santana and Vargas have arrived, Arcia and Escobar are developing. All four are 25 or younger. Dozier is now for sure a very good player. Mauer is hitting finally. May will get the kinks out. Meyer will be a Twin next year. Sano too. It's possible that Buxton, Polanco, and even Berrios may as well.

 

Pinto is going to be on this roster next year. Trading him seems bad. The 25-man roster I proposed is a .500 team, I think, and then you add in Meyer, Sano, and possibly few others. I would be much more interested in throwing money at 2 players at the end of next year and probably not this year unless it really is a top pitcher.

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#79 Shane Wahl

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 12:15 PM

Note that I am not in favor of trading prospects right now. At least not the very top, clearly. That said, redundancy could be a factor, and that is why I mention Rosario, Harrison, T. Jones, and Duffey.


#80 Oxtung

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 12:27 PM

Are they? Buxton missed the year, as did Sano. Neither has played above AA. Are we so sure they will play here next year?


Yeah I agree. I think a lot of assumptions are being made that these guys will come back roaring. Given Buxtons brain injury, and the Twins history with mauer, Morneau, span, I think it is entirely possible things move much slower and we don't see them until the end of the season if at all next year.

#81 mike wants wins

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 12:27 PM

Brock, what does this line mean, if not "I don't think they are winning 80 games next year, or probably the year after".....

 

"You trade prospects when you're an 80 win team pushing for the playoffs"

 

I am trying to understand that part of your statement, and align that with not making a trade of prospects. And, since most prospects don't work out, and the team is flush with money, why not trade for a more certain thing in a MLB player? If the system is really 15+ good prospects deep, I'd think they have an excess they can deal from.

Lighten up Francis....

#82 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 12:30 PM

Brock, what does this line mean, if not "I don't think they are winning 80 games next year, or probably the year after".....

 

"You trade prospects when you're an 80 win team pushing for the playoffs"

 

I am trying to understand that part of your statement, and align that with not making a trade of prospects. And, since most prospects don't work out, and the team is flush with money, why not trade for a more certain thing in a MLB player? If the system is really 15+ good prospects deep, I'd think they have an excess they can deal from.

In the context of my "80 win team", I meant the previous year. So, the earliest the Twins could be an "80 win team" is October of 2015 - provided they win 80 games - and then make the corresponding moves to contend the following offseason.

 

With that said, if they pick up a free agent or two and the Twins spring into contention next July, then I'm all for trading a piece or two - nothing major - to make a push for the playoffs.

 

But now, after coming off a 71-74 win season? Nah. Too many variables, too many players that will need to step up to fill the 20-win gap to the playoffs as a legitimate contender.


#83 Kirby_waved_at_me

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 12:31 PM

If the Twins sign Yasmani Tomas and one Lester/Scherzer/Shields, I'll buy season tickets.

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#84 spycake

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 12:32 PM

 And I'm not in favor of sitting around through more losing seasons waiting for the minor leagues to provide all the talent this team needs to be a 90+ win team again.

Methinks you picked the wrong team to be a fan of!

 

Or perhaps more accurately, the team picked the wrong fan.  :)


#85 birdwatcher

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 12:38 PM

New field manager, he (or she) picks coaches. Invest assets (money and/or minor leaguers) to obtain better talent.


Brilliant! :)

#86 mike wants wins

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 12:38 PM

In the context of my "80 win team", I meant the previous year. So, the earliest the Twins could be an "80 win team" is October of 2015 - provided they win 80 games - and then make the corresponding moves to contend the following offseason.

 

With that said, if they pick up a free agent or two and the Twins spring into contention next July, then I'm all for trading a piece or two - nothing major - to make a push for the playoffs.

 

But now, after coming off a 71-74 win season? Nah. Too many variables, too many players that will need to step up to fill the 20-win gap to the playoffs as a legitimate contender.

 

 

Thanks, understand now. I'm of the opinion that prospects are now OVER valued in MLB (since they were under valued before) and that the pendulum has swung pretty far that way. I think the new inefficiency is dealing prospects for proven MLB players.

Lighten up Francis....

#87 tobi0040

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 12:40 PM

If the Twins sign Yasmani Tomas and one Lester/Scherzer/Shields, I'll buy season tickets.

 

Good news is you can save your $1,200

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#88 drjim

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 12:40 PM

Brock, what does this line mean, if not "I don't think they are winning 80 games next year, or probably the year after".....

 

"You trade prospects when you're an 80 win team pushing for the playoffs"

 

I am trying to understand that part of your statement, and align that with not making a trade of prospects. And, since most prospects don't work out, and the team is flush with money, why not trade for a more certain thing in a MLB player? If the system is really 15+ good prospects deep, I'd think they have an excess they can deal from.

 

I think this gets down to the actual value of prospects and what they can get in return.

 

Generic things like "prospects are overvalued" doesn't really say much. In a sense they are, but in a sense they really aren't. The top prospects (Sano, Buxton, Meyer, Berrios) are valued (rightly) very high, but guys like Stewart, Gordon, Thorpe, Polanco, even though they will be highly ranked in the offseason, really aren't going to bring back much in return because they are far from the majors, and a team that is rebuilding, like the Twins, are wise to keep them in their system instead of flipping them for a year or two of a corner OF. Guys ranked lower than that are guys that get half a season of a bit piece at the deadline or maybe a full year of a guy with a little too big a contract (or are third pieces of a bigger trade).

 

Trade a prospect for a player? OK fine, sounds good in a vacuum, but what does this actually look like to you? To get a legitimate player that has more than a year of control, it starts with one of the big 4 and then needs another couple of guys as well.

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#89 drjim

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 12:43 PM

Note that I am not in favor of trading prospects right now. At least not the very top, clearly. That said, redundancy could be a factor, and that is why I mention Rosario, Harrison, T. Jones, and Duffey.

 

I'll buy Rosario to a limited extent, but those other guys really aren't bringing anything back of substance. Depth guys that are third pieces to a trade or might get you a year of an overpriced corner bat.

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#90 spycake

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 12:46 PM

You misremember. No one would have written at this point last year the Twins had a set option at C (2nd catcher to split time with Pinto), SS, LF, CF, DH, or 3-4 rotation spots. They might have suggested short contracts at a couple of those spots to not block top prospects, but not that they were set. This is progress.

Actually, last year at this time, Mauer was largely considered a "set" option at catcher, just temporarily shelved.

 

At that time, plenty of people here also thought Florimon was an asset going forward at SS.

 

And lots of people here also said we shouldn't bother getting a new OF for 2014, because we had guys in the corners and our CF of the future would be up by midseason (perhaps he was, just not the guy people were referring to :) ).

 

Last year at this time, people were also probably asking, how can we improve on ~105 OPS+ at 1B?  Sounds like this year too.

 

The rotation outlook was indeed worse -- god bless Phil Hughes! -- and I like our position player mix better now, but there are some similarities.

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