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Article: A Tale Of Two Transitions

trevor may
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#21 Rigby

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Posted 12 August 2016 - 07:24 PM

Whew....... read the topic and thought the Jenner clan was at it again....

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#22 DuluthFan

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Posted 12 August 2016 - 08:18 PM

 

I was always under the impression that the decision to move May to the bullpen was based along the lines that May only was effective for 5 innings.  Using Fangraphs (2013-2015), as a starter, May started 25 games was 7-14, with at 5.61 ERA and averaged 5.06 innings/game.  Compare to Mike Pelfrey started 64 games was 11-27, had a 4.94 ERA and averaged 5.33 innings/game.  Tyler Duffy, 29 games, 12-9, 4.90 ERA, 5.49 innings/game.  Ricky Nolasco 56 games, 15-22, 5.39 ERA and averaged 5.70 innings/game.  Based on this information, May was one of the least effect starting pitchers, despite having the highest K/9 on the staff (Berrios is tracking slightly better in K/9).  More importantly, May gave the least innings as a starter.  I think we can all agree that Nolasco and Pelfrey did not have a very successful Twins career, yet their numbers are better than Mays and they got deeper into the game (although Pelfrey just barely).

 

 

Exactly! Plus at the time of the move, everyone wanted to copy the blueprint of the KC Royals with 3 hard throwing, strike-em out relief pitchers at the back end of the pen. May was the only one on the roster who fit the bill.


#23 TwinsWonWithHunter

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Posted 12 August 2016 - 09:54 PM

There is a lot of history here. Back in the day, the Twins moved Aguilera into the rotation. This would have been early on in the Ryan era. Mid-90s, well after Aguilera was an established closer with two WS rings (Mets, Twins). The move did not work out and he was flipped back to bullpen as I remember it.

Which is just a way of saying we play Yo-yo with our pitchers as a matter of course!

#24 TheLeviathan

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Posted 12 August 2016 - 10:49 PM

The list of starters we chose to roll with instead of May only makes the decision more embarrassing.  

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#25 spycake

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Posted 13 August 2016 - 05:45 AM

I was always under the impression that the decision to move May to the bullpen was based along the lines that May only was effective for 5 innings. Using Fangraphs (2013-2015), as a starter, May started 25 games was 7-14, with at 5.61 ERA and averaged 5.06 innings/game. Compare to Mike Pelfrey started 64 games was 11-27, had a 4.94 ERA and averaged 5.33 innings/game. Tyler Duffy, 29 games, 12-9, 4.90 ERA, 5.49 innings/game. Ricky Nolasco 56 games, 15-22, 5.39 ERA and averaged 5.70 innings/game. Based on this information, May was one of the least effect starting pitchers, despite having the highest K/9 on the staff (Berrios is tracking slightly better in K/9). More importantly, May gave the least innings as a starter. I think we can all agree that Nolasco and Pelfrey did not have a very successful Twins career, yet their numbers are better than Mays and they got deeper into the game (although Pelfrey just barely).

Where I agree with the discussion on this board is the May should have been stretched out especially given this dreadful year. Because he has the stuff to be a very good pitcher, he needs to get deeper into the game and in a lost year this could have been worked on.


That isn't a fai comparison, because it lumps in the first starts of May's MLB career in 2014 (remember his debut?), and compared them to veterans (except for Duffey of course, who had an unusually good rookie season which hadn't happened yet at the time of May's demotion).

Looking at just 2015, the difference is negligible. Especially considering May was actually given less leash / pitch count than the veterans.
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#26 ashburyjohn

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Posted 13 August 2016 - 10:33 AM

May started his major league career with a succession of absolutely rotten games, then somewhat straightened himself out, with one more absolute clunker in 2014 buried among 5 otherwise decent-to-impressive games. He began 2015 with a rotten game too, and had two more of that caliber among his 16 starts, the rest being again decent to strong.

 

I took a look at some AL starters who were in their age-25 seasons in 2015. Danny Salazar, Jake Odorizzi, Sonny Gray, Mike Montgomery, Jesse Hahn. All were more successful in terms of their overall stats as starters than May. I scanned the "Game Score" column at bb-ref.com to get a feel for their seasons. The qualitative takeaway I got was that, like Trevor May, their seasons were sprinkled with stinker games now and then - even Saint Sonny had a few games where he couldn't stop the hitters. The difference was that they weren't yanked from the rotation.

 

No two pitchers are alike. Pitchers aren't even necessarily the same pitcher a couple years later, due to changes wrought by the stress of being a major league pitcher, and I'm worried May is now not the pitcher we thought we had. I don't claim to know what career trajectory May would be on now, had he remained in the rotation. What I wish was... we had found out. It seems to me the braintrust hit the panic button on him.

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#27 Jordan1212

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Posted 13 August 2016 - 05:35 PM

I agree that having him in the pen is invaluable to the team how Paul Molitor doesn't see it I don't get it because 1st off our starters can't even go 5 innings without getting just shelled so what good does it do to have his power arm in the pen when we're loosing. I don't think is injuries are related but he should be a starter

#28 USAFChief

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Posted 14 August 2016 - 07:47 AM

Thing is, those guys were bad as starters, or had injury problems as starters. The decisions to move May and Slowey out of the rotation were based on a perceived overabundance of starting depth more so than their own situations.


I think the decision to move May to the pen was made based on a need for bullpen help.
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#29 jorgenswest

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Posted 14 August 2016 - 08:11 AM

I don't really care why they moved May to the pen. Whatever the reason, they should have move him back to the rotation for this year. His back trouble and inability to get loose in a relief role was known at the end of the 2015 season.
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#30 Doomtints

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Posted 14 August 2016 - 08:58 AM

Your premise is a little wrong. 

 

Slowey was legendary in the minors before his first call-up.He had 4 years in a starter's role with the Twins.He had numerous spats with the front office.If the Twins did not like him, they had a great opportunity to trade him when his stock was high.Instead they killed his career and this event helped set it up that no pitcher wanted to come to Minnesota.Sure, it was a mistake.

 

Trevor May's minor league career does not hold a candle to Slowey's.His numbers as a starter with the Twins are nowhere close to Slowey's.I read several scouting reports on May when the Twins acquired him and many had him pegged as a reliever or a marginal end of the rotation starter.Twins fans were drinking the Terry Ryan kool-aid back then and I think many of us still think May is someone he isn't.

 

I think a better example for the Twins continued mishandling of pitching was the fact that they once had Glen Perkins as a starter, in spite of him having only two pitches.To their credit they did not give up on him and found him the right role.Fast forward to 2015/2016 and you have Tyler Duffey, another 2-pitch pitcher struggling in a starting role.Duffey could be an elite set-up man or a good closer and the Twins are wasting his talents as a starter, just like what they did with Perkins.

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#31 TheLeviathan

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Posted 14 August 2016 - 09:13 AM

 

I don't really care why they moved May to the pen. Whatever the reason, they should have move him back to the rotation for this year. His back trouble and inability to get loose in a relief role was known at the end of the 2015 season.

 

This.  And then the team doubled down on it's stupidity by teasing May with having a shot at the rotation that never really existed.  

 

You teach pitchers for years to be creatures of habit and then you give them little to no transition to a totally different set of habits and you expect it to just work out?  I know it does sometimes, but this team always seems to go 0 to 60 with these pitcher conversions and that's just unwise.  

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#32 ashburyjohn

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Posted 14 August 2016 - 01:32 PM

I think the decision to move May to the pen was made based on a need for bullpen help.

The team needed help in all parts of the pitching staff. A starter is more valuable than a reliever, and IMO May had not pitched himself out of a starting job, and had earned a chance to continue to develop in that role.

 

It's true that a five-inning starter is not ideal, if that's indeed how he was viewed at the time. Five innings from a starter is still more valuable than four innings from your long man, or one inning if you tell him to go max effort. And there's still the chance to grow into the job and complete six or seven eventually.

 

There's always time to convert him to a max-effort guy later, if the starting role becomes closed.

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#33 dxpavelka

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Posted 16 August 2016 - 11:04 AM

 

Trevor May bullpen vs. starting is catching up to Joe Mauer as far as posts on this site.

And the organization STILL hasn't gotten it right.

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#34 jimmer

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Posted 17 August 2016 - 09:08 AM

 

And the organization STILL hasn't gotten it right.

yeah, it really hasn't come close to Mauer posts actually :-)




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