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Article: The New Top Twins Pitching Prospect?

j.o. berrios alex meyer
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#41 spycake

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Posted 03 September 2014 - 02:28 PM

I am a little conerned with the dramitic drop in his K/9 (10 -> 6) when going from A+ to AA.  That fact alone makes me think he is still lower on the rung than Meyer who has maintained a strong number.

Me too.Obviously he's much younger and is still a good prospect, but he still has yet to dominate AA hitters, which is a big achievement gap from Meyer.


#42 Dantes929

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Posted 03 September 2014 - 02:36 PM

It is amazing how quickly some posters can turn on a player. What exactly was Meyer's crime here? Did he suddenly throw less than 90 mph on his fastball? Was he in charge of his innings limits? Did his ERA climb over 5? If all the angst was due to his possible shoulder injury it would make sense but that really doesn't seem to be the case for people suddenly thinking he has no future. The way I recall it was is that Meyer did not go deep into games because the Twins limited his pitches per game. Going 5 or 6 innings on 80 pitches is not so ridiculous especially when you are a strike out pitcher. I defended Pino and May being promoted ahead of him but also believe Meyer earned a spot before Darnell and Johnson. Is that his fault that he pitched well enough for promotion but wasn't promoted? He could easily have been brought up for a couple starts which along with his minor league numbers would have made a decent progression. The only negatives at all is his walks ( I don't discount that since command is what has sunk May so far) and a little shoulder stiffness during his last start. I don't usually credit the term expert since I don't really believe there are any but are there any scouting reports that have said "Whoops, instead of projecting Meyer as a #1 or #2, we think it is now just a prayer that he can even attain the heights of mop up reliever"?
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#43 SD Buhr

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Posted 03 September 2014 - 02:44 PM

I'm not sure anyone suggested it's a prayer he'll attain mop-up reliever status. The suggestion that he may eventually be best utilized as a closer or other back-end bullpen arm has been out there since he was acquired.

 

I think Meyer is still the most promising hope for a top-of-the-rotation pitcher with an ETA of 2015 that the Twins have in their system. But I don't feel he lived up to my lofty hopes coming in to the season. Admittedly, my hopes may have been unrealisticly influenced by a few AzFL appearances.

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#44 jokin

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Posted 03 September 2014 - 02:46 PM

I think this is a case where causation and correlation get a little gray.Do the Nats have a good pitching system because of the way they handled their promotions?I think you can look at each separately and conclude otherwise.

 

They had the #1 pick in a draft in which the best pitching prospect in 10 years came out (many scouts opinions). He was going to be up 1-2 years from the draft when healthy.

 

Fister has a 2.66 ERA and was traded for after he was an established starter.

 

Gio has a 3.89 ERA and was also trade for after he was established.

 

This Roark guy did not see the big leagues until he was 26. He has a 2.91 ERA

 

Jordan Zimmerman came up a few days before he was 23. 

 

So at best this promoting early concept impacted 20% of the rotation and 23 is not super young.I think it says more about organizational philosophy.The Twins could trade right now for pitchers of the Gio and Fister caliber but we don't want to give up our prospects and/or turn around and pay a guy like Gio.

 

 

"23 is not super young."  Yeah, let's convince the Twins of that fact.:)

 

But you left out Jordan and Detwiler from the current staff, and the fact that the Nats have demonstrated this type of earlier call-up activity than the Twins and have sustained SP ERA success for the last 5 years, not just this year (and even with bad FA misses like Haren included in those ERA numbers).  The main point I was making was the other pitchers that I mentioned beyond Strasburg, for the most part either have, or are still positively contributing to the Nats, or were much-more-quickly-than-the-Twins, moved up, or out, in trade while still young.

 

I'm suggesting that bringing in a different perspective in philosophies on pitcher development from an organization that has found continued and sustained success in just this area for all these young arms now in the Twins system would be prudent.  And hiring Randy Johnson as a specific special consultant to Alex Meyer for a year or two wouldn't be a bad idea, either.

Edited by jokin, 03 September 2014 - 02:48 PM.

 

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#45 jokin

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Posted 03 September 2014 - 02:52 PM

It is amazing how quickly some posters can turn on a player. What exactly was Meyer's crime here? Did he suddenly throw less than 90 mph on his fastball? Was he in charge of his innings limits? Did his ERA climb over 5? If all the angst was due to his possible shoulder injury it would make sense but that really doesn't seem to be the case for people suddenly thinking he has no future. The way I recall it was is that Meyer did not go deep into games because the Twins limited his pitches per game. Going 5 or 6 innings on 80 pitches is not so ridiculous especially when you are a strike out pitcher. I defended Pino and May being promoted ahead of him but also believe Meyer earned a spot before Darnell and Johnson. Is that his fault that he pitched well enough for promotion but wasn't promoted? He could easily have been brought up for a couple starts which along with his minor league numbers would have made a decent progression. The only negatives at all is his walks ( I don't discount that since command is what has sunk May so far) and a little shoulder stiffness during his last start. I don't usually credit the term expert since I don't really believe there are any but are there any scouting reports that have said "Whoops, instead of projecting Meyer as a #1 or #2, we think it is now just a prayer that he can even attain the heights of mop up reliever"?

 

+1 :huh::o

 

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#46 jokin

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Posted 03 September 2014 - 03:00 PM

I would be shocked if Berrios made the Twins out of spring training.Actually, I would be surprised if he even opened in AAA.I think he gets another couple months at AA first.

 

Yep, this sounds exactly right, with all the returning arms, plus Pelfrey, plus May and Meyer vying for rotation spots, plus the fact that the Twins were still bidding on an extra starter going into this season and may very well repeat that exercise this offseason, it would take a monumental string of TJ and shoulder breakdowns for Berrios to get close to the Twins before late July, at the absolute very earliest.  My money is on that he starts out in New Britain and forces his way up to Rochester, just as he forced his way up from Ft Myers this year.

 

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"forcing Twins fans to endure more bitter, baseless, and tiresome cheap shots about the Twins FO."


#47 Dantes929

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Posted 03 September 2014 - 03:36 PM

I'm not sure anyone suggested it's a prayer he'll attain mop-up reliever status. The suggestion that he may eventually be best utilized as a closer or other back-end bullpen arm has been out there since he was acquired.
 
I think Meyer is still the most promising hope for a top-of-the-rotation pitcher with an ETA of 2015 that the Twins have in their system. But I don't feel he lived up to my lofty hopes coming in to the season. Admittedly, my hopes may have been unrealisticly influenced by a few AzFL appearances.


Kwak "Berrios is definitely ahead of Meyer--and likely several others. Meyer has been moved from "prospect" to "PRAYER" in the player rankings. If he can turn it around--great! But, pinning hopes on a shoulder-injured player who rarely pitches six innings? No, folks this guy is a prospect (at 24!) he is a PRAYER. I hope he makes it-- No, I'm not advocating to "shoot this horse", but I'm not going to bet on him--nor should the Twins. Simply play him and hope (and PRAY)."but the probability as a dependible rotation guy is too long of a shot.

I admit I used a little hyperbole to make my point.

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff ... and it's all small stuff.


#48 ashburyjohn

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Posted 03 September 2014 - 03:39 PM

I'm certainly no expert on the Cards' philosophy, but the question that always comes to my mind when I think about this approach is, "how does that work if you also have a policy of not allowing a young pitcher's innings to exceed their prior season's by more than X%?"...


How do the Cards deal with this? Do they really have a promising potential starter throw 70-80 innings out of the pen one year and then plug him in to the rotation with no innings limit the next?

You're asking the right questions and I don't know the answers.If you ever get a chance to interview Adam Wainright, you could ask him.

 

2006:61 games75 IP

2007:32 games 202 IP

 

Rigorous simulated innings between relief appearances his rookie year, is my guess, but purely that.

 

Other Cardinal pitchers had less extreme situations. Lance Lynn in the bullpen for a while in 2011 and then a full SP load the next year, Shelby Miller in a short stint of relief in 2012 before full-time starting.But they don't always do it that way either, Michael Wacha started in his first 5 major league appearances.Unless the front office wants to divulge their secret sauce, you'd probably have to piece it together by interviewing pitchers one by one and see what emerged about their process and whether anything could be inferred as to the philosophy.

Hyperbole is literally the worst thing in the world.


#49 DarrenVahtra

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Posted 03 September 2014 - 09:02 PM

I think meyer may just be a bullpen guy. he doesn't seem to be able to handle the stress of starting.  that being said I think he's got an electric arm and should be with the big club.  Berrios strikes me as kind of a twins sort of guy.  If he's the ace i think the twins are still in search of a top of the rotation arm.


#50 Hosken Bombo Disco

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Posted 03 September 2014 - 09:34 PM

I think meyer may just be a bullpen guy. he doesn't seem to be able to handle the stress of starting.  that being said I think he's got an electric arm and should be with the big club.  Berrios strikes me as kind of a twins sort of guy.  If he's the ace i think the twins are still in search of a top of the rotation arm.

well welcome to TD... you and me are the only two who feel Meyer might not make it as a starter... take comfort though, as Randy Johnson took until his late 20s to get straightened out and Doug Fister (6-foot-8) didn't debut until age 25.
When I hear a pitcher is throwing a “simulated game” my first thought is that he repeated the opposing lineup 10,000 times. - Jonathan Judge

#51 DocBauer

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Posted 03 September 2014 - 10:25 PM

OK, I know this isn't wholly accurate over time. Things change. But if, like me, and a few other "old timers" on here, LOL, ...don't hate me for saying that!...you can remember the Twins history back 10...20...even 30 years perhaps. In that time, you've seen a hell of a lot. You've seen 2 owners, multiple managers, and if we ignore Bill Smith's short tenure, only 2 GM's since 1987. Top of my head, right now, I just can't recall GM's before that. In those older days, guys like Oelkers and Viola and Anderson, amongst others, were promoted quickly. More recently were Milton, Radke, Denny Neagle, Erickson and Santana, a rule 5 pick stuck in the pen to keep him. NOT saying the Twins have been overly aggressive in promoting pitchers over the years, but these are a few examples of where it has taken place. I don't know if it's his nature or not, but I think Ryan is conservative by nature. Previously, he made some very aggressive moves with prospects as well as trades. I think when he came back, he was stuck in a cautious mode. His trades for May and Meyer, however, as well as a general philosophy draft change in to drafting power arms, seems to indicate some progression in his approach. We can argue all day long about May and Meyer, but at the end of the day, both of these kids were in their first season of AAA ball. Berrios was progressed aggressively. Despite massive talent, so were Stewart, Thorpe, Gonsalves and others. I have been a HUGE fan of Berrios since drafted, and have compared him to Pedro Martinez, though in truth he's probably thicker, more muscular, and a better overall athlete. And I've read many times, possibly fairly, where Meyer compares to Randy Johnson in size, ability and potential. I absolutely do not have all the answers, and don't pretend to. Perhaps there really are 3-4 teams out there that know something nobody else does...and knows that promoting 21 y.o.'s to the majors works. Perhaps they just got lucky drafting super high, and perhaps those pitchers will burn out. Who knows. But I also think it's kind of crazy to compare every prospect to every other prospect. I would still rank Meyer ahead of Berrios to this point, based on pure stuff and his length. But I would also put Berrios as a top 5 Twins prospect. Saying he is behind Buxton, Sano and Meyer is no small thing! His stuff, his approach and work ethic seem outstanding. And as reported, despite average height, he seems to do an outstanding job of keeping the ball low. If all of this continues, he could surpass Meyer. But for now, I'd say #2 behind Meyer in the Twins organization for pitchers.
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#52 stringer bell

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 05:06 AM

Berrios:I've met him and talked to him twice.He seems like a nice young man.The WBC messed up his 2013 and he came back with an outstanding 2014.I think he could see time in the majors next year, but the progression has to continue.As far as the K/9, he didn't pitch that much at NB, so it is SSS (in part).Next year, he should get a half season at AA and we'll probably get a better feel for his dominance or lack thereof.

 

Meyer:I've heard him compared to Scherzer, in that Max didn't get deep into a lot of games in his minor league career, despite great stuff.We have the added factor of a shoulder injury, making the Twins hyper-cautious with him.I look forward to seeing what he can do in big league games and expect that will happen in 2015.

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#53 tobi0040

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 07:34 AM

OK, I know this isn't wholly accurate over time. Things change. But if, like me, and a few other "old timers" on here, LOL, ...don't hate me for saying that!...you can remember the Twins history back 10...20...even 30 years perhaps. In that time, you've seen a hell of a lot. You've seen 2 owners, multiple managers, and if we ignore Bill Smith's short tenure, only 2 GM's since 1987. Top of my head, right now, I just can't recall GM's before that. In those older days, guys like Oelkers and Viola and Anderson, amongst others, were promoted quickly. More recently were Milton, Radke, Denny Neagle, Erickson and Santana, a rule 5 pick stuck in the pen to keep him. NOT saying the Twins have been overly aggressive in promoting pitchers over the years, but these are a few examples of where it has taken place. I don't know if it's his nature or not, but I think Ryan is conservative by nature. Previously, he made some very aggressive moves with prospects as well as trades. I think when he came back, he was stuck in a cautious mode. His trades for May and Meyer, however, as well as a general philosophy draft change in to drafting power arms, seems to indicate some progression in his approach. We can argue all day long about May and Meyer, but at the end of the day, both of these kids were in their first season of AAA ball. Berrios was progressed aggressively. Despite massive talent, so were Stewart, Thorpe, Gonsalves and others. I have been a HUGE fan of Berrios since drafted, and have compared him to Pedro Martinez, though in truth he's probably thicker, more muscular, and a better overall athlete. And I've read many times, possibly fairly, where Meyer compares to Randy Johnson in size, ability and potential. I absolutely do not have all the answers, and don't pretend to. Perhaps there really are 3-4 teams out there that know something nobody else does...and knows that promoting 21 y.o.'s to the majors works. Perhaps they just got lucky drafting super high, and perhaps those pitchers will burn out. Who knows. But I also think it's kind of crazy to compare every prospect to every other prospect. I would still rank Meyer ahead of Berrios to this point, based on pure stuff and his length. But I would also put Berrios as a top 5 Twins prospect. Saying he is behind Buxton, Sano and Meyer is no small thing! His stuff, his approach and work ethic seem outstanding. And as reported, despite average height, he seems to do an outstanding job of keeping the ball low. If all of this continues, he could surpass Meyer. But for now, I'd say #2 behind Meyer in the Twins organization for pitchers.

 

I still have Meyer ahead of Berrios, but I have a strong bias for upside when it comes to prospects. Therefore, I can respect those that put Berrios ahead of Meyer. That case can be made. It is within a realm of possibility that they could both start next year in AAA and Meyer is 4.5 years older. 


#54 Monkeypaws

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 07:39 PM

Regardless of who who you think is #1 now, they both would have been #1 5 years ago; nice problem to have, Berrios, Meyer, plus Stewart, true potential front line guys. When has that ever happened for this team? We ain't talking Mark Redmond, Jason Bell, and Dan Serafini here. Or Baker, Slowey, Blackburn. Or Mills, Johnson, whoever. 

 

Add in Gonsalves, Thorpe, maybe Cederoth. 

 

This has been a layer of starting pitching the Twins prospect pool has never had in my time, except if you consider Santana -Liriano, but they both seemed to make their case at the major league level. 

 

The pen looks to be in good shape for the future as well.

Edited by Monkeypaws, 04 September 2014 - 07:43 PM.

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#55 kab21

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 08:58 PM

You're asking the right questions and I don't know the answers.If you ever get a chance to interview Adam Wainright, you could ask him.

 

2006:61 games75 IP

2007:32 games 202 IP

 

Rigorous simulated innings between relief appearances his rookie year, is my guess, but purely that.

 

Other Cardinal pitchers had less extreme situations. Lance Lynn in the bullpen for a while in 2011 and then a full SP load the next year, Shelby Miller in a short stint of relief in 2012 before full-time starting.But they don't always do it that way either, Michael Wacha started in his first 5 major league appearances.Unless the front office wants to divulge their secret sauce, you'd probably have to piece it together by interviewing pitchers one by one and see what emerged about their process and whether anything could be inferred as to the philosophy.

 

Wainwright's situation is completely irrelevant to Meyer (but not to May).Wainwright threw 182 innings the year before he spent a year in relief as a rookie.This is one of the reasons that this plus 30 rule needs further analysis in each situation.If someone is injured or pitches in relief it doesn't set that person back to 70IP to 100 to 130 to 160 to 190. 

 

further analysis of some of the Twins pitching prospects

 

For Meyer he has pitched 130 - 70 - 130 innings so I would expect him to be limited again next year in the plus 30-40 range.Berrios is 20 yrs old and has gone 100-140 and I would expect him to be limited in the 160-170 range next year.Trevor May almost certainly will not have an innings limit next year even though he only has 120 IP so far.He has pitched 150-160 innings for the 3 previous seasons.There's no reason he can't go 200 innings.Thorpe and Gonsalves will certainly have innings limits but it might not be plus 30.I wouldn't be surprised if they were allowed to go 120+ allowing them to pitch most of the season.

Is 2016 2017 the year that a good pitching prospect is truly blocked by 5 good pitchers in the starting rotation? 

Looks like we will have to wait another year until a good pitching prospect is actually blocked.


#56 ashburyjohn

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 09:49 PM

Wainwright's situation is completely irrelevant to Meyer (but not to May). 

In either case, I'm not looking for exact parallels. I'm looking for principles behind what a successful organization has been doing.

Hyperbole is literally the worst thing in the world.


#57 kab21

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Posted 05 September 2014 - 07:24 AM

You can't make any conclusions based on completely different situations.Wainwright in particular is bad example to use since he had 800 MiLB innings.At that point his arm doesn't need to be babied even if he pitched a year in relief.I think using the plus 30 rule for pitchers that spent a year relieving after pitching 160+ innings in the minors is a misuse of the rule.

Is 2016 2017 the year that a good pitching prospect is truly blocked by 5 good pitchers in the starting rotation? 

Looks like we will have to wait another year until a good pitching prospect is actually blocked.


#58 tobi0040

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Posted 05 September 2014 - 08:13 AM

You can't make any conclusions based on completely different situations.Wainwright in particular is bad example to use since he had 800 MiLB innings.At that point his arm doesn't need to be babied even if he pitched a year in relief.I think using the plus 30 rule for pitchers that spent a year relieving after pitching 160+ innings in the minors is a misuse of the rule.

 

Agreed. From a high school pitcher throwing 45 IP, taking a few years to get to 200 IP sounds like a wise call to me. The Wainwright example does not make much sense as it was pointed out.

 

At the end of the day I don't think the Twins inning limits, "babying guys" or developing guys too early or too late plays a huge role in our 3 years of 90+ losses.I think talent is the big factor.We are looking at who is doing it right and they have more talent.Whether it is St. Louis or San Francisco, they have drafted better, not let key guys leave, and/or signed free agents.From my seat, the only real difference between how most teams have handled guys and how the Twins have would be Meyer, i think he would have been promoted over guys like Pino in most organizations and I don't think Danny Santana would be playing out of position in a losing year.But by and large these two moves don't impact the standings a ton this year.

Edited by tobi0040, 05 September 2014 - 08:15 AM.




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