I could care less how much the payroll is. 150 Mil payroll guarantees us nothing except some fans will complain it still isn't enough. Where do you want to sign some one? Would everyone be happy if we signed an OF? This way we can take a lineup spot away from 3 young and improving players? Should we sign a SS to clog the development of Polanco or Gordon? Even if you want to sign a pitcher, who's spot does he take and who do we sign? over the next calendar year Gonsalves, Romero, Jorge, Stewart, Slegers and Thorpe will all likely make their debut. Sleigers and Jorge already have. We have Santana and Berrios already in the rotation for next year. Plus we need to keep a spot for Mejia who showed enough this year to deserve another chance next year. Lastly you have May coming back from TJ surgery. At the beginning of the year Santana and Berrios are written in ink. I would put Mejia with dark pencil. That leaves 2 spots available for May, Slegers Gonsalves and Romero. I really think that both Romero and Gonzalvez are going to be given legitimate shots to win spots next year. Even if you could go out and sign the best FA pitcher available, Yu Darvish, should you? This isn't about being cheap. Do these contracts ever work out? Do you want to sign a soon to be 32 yr old pitcher to an 8 year 240 mil dollar contract? I really don't want to. I'd rather follow the Cubs model. Get most of your pieces in place thru home grown talent and then sign the strategic FA (Lester) when you are ready. That time is the winter of 2018 or 2019. I'd much rather see if Gonsalves, Romero and Berrios can all become legitimate number 2 or 3 starters. Can Slegers or Mejia develop into league average starters? I don't know but I want to find out.
I want to do the same with the bullpen. The last thing I want to see is a bunch of payroll used up to bring in a couple of above average over priced volatile relievers. We now have 4 pieces that I feel pretty comfortable with in Rogers, Duffy, Pressley and Hildenberger. Business might be on his way to locking down another spot. At most there are really only 2 spots left next year for high leverage relievers. I thought for sure at the beginning of this year that those 2 spots in 2018 would be filled by Nick Burdi and Tyler Jay. Due to injuries they are both highly unlikely to win spots next year. But new guys have rose up to take their place. I can't wait to see what John Curtis does when he is called up in Sept. Also if Gabriel Moya stuff will translate to the majors. We have plenty options in the pen without signing more relievers.
Souhan wrote an article a month ago that talked about that if the Twins make the playoffs or not will have next to nothing to do with what happened at the trading deadline. If they made it was due to their young players improving and their veterans playing like stars. This resurgence towards a playoff spot is due to exactly that. The young guys like Buck, Rosario, Jorge and Max are playing like allstars. The veterans like Dozier and Mauer are hitting a ton. That is why we are leading the wild card right now and it wouldn't matter if Garcia was our 5th starter or Kindler was our closer.
The same can be said for the Twins chances of winning a world series or 2 over the next 5 years. For this to happen Sano and Buxton need to be annual MVP contenders like their MILB careers suggested. Rosario, Kepler, Gordon and Polanco need to be above average starters to borderline all stars. Berries needs to be the real deal and at least a number 2 caliber starter. At least one of Romero and Gonsalves needs to become a 2/3 starter. Preferably Romero becomes a 2 and Gonsalves becomes a 3. We need one or 2 more from the May, Slegers, Thorpe, Stewart, Jorge group to become league average or better starters. We need to find dominant closer and 2 wipe out setup men out of Rogers, Hildenberger, Curtis, Burdi, Jay, Anderson, Clay. This may seem like wishing for a lot of things to go right but a lot of this already happening. Buck and Sano have shown month long plus of MVP stretches. Rosario, Max and Polanco have all shown stretches of good to great play. Berries has looked like a potential ace at times. Rogers and Hildenberger already appear to be lockdown bullpen pieces. The other young guys have all dominated in the minors and have the talent and stuff to do so in the majors. Once you get a majority of these things to happen you then supplement the items you missed on with free agents.
In Nov 2018 you might have a shot at a Manny Machado or a Dallas Keuchel to be the final piece of a world series contender. In 2018 the only veteran contacts we will have is the final year owed to Hughes and Castro totaling 21 mil.