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Article: DET 4, MIN 2: Mauer Reaches Milestone, Hildenberger Flops

joe mauer kohl stewart trevor hildenberger
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#21 LA VIkes Fan

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Posted 26 September 2018 - 10:37 AM

Last night shows (again) why it's hard to be in favor of Molitor staying as manager. 1-0 game where the primary pitcher is a young guy getting his feet wet. You want to put in your best relievers to give that guy the best chance to feel good about himself and build his confidence. Instead, Molitor puts in Hildenberger, one of our best relievers two months ago, but now probably our worst bullpen option (maybe second worst behind Busenitz). It would have been a pleasant surprise if Hildenberger had been successful; certainly not an expectation. I kow Rogers is overused but osme combination of Rogers, May, Magill and even Reed would have been a much better way to go.Then, when Hildenberger gets hit right away, Molitor leaves him in instead of pulling him immediately. Just bad bullpen management. Again. And again. And again. 

 

This is a good example of what's so frustrating about the Twins. They're still using the 1985/Minnesota NIce/AYSO Bullpen playbook. Molitor lines his guys up to defined roles and rides them in those roles regardles of performance or results. Shut Hildenberger down for the rest of the year or at least mop up only. He is hurting this team.

 

Performance matters. Results matter. When you don't perform, you sit. If you consistently don't perform, you get cut. That's what good teams do. We don't. We aren't going to get better unless we get better at requiring, driving and rewarding performance.  

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#22 jtkoupal

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Posted 26 September 2018 - 11:07 AM

Gotta wonder if Hildenberger is fighting through an injury. He has had a lot of bad outings in the 2nd half. Really, he hasn't been good at all in the second half (8.65 ERA, 5.92 FIP)

 

On the bright side, his xFIP is 3.76 and K/9 is 9.00 in the second half... so perhaps he's been largely unlucky, but the BB and HR rates have been pretty bad in the second half.


#23 ashburyjohn

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Posted 26 September 2018 - 12:00 PM

Last night shows (again) why it's hard to be in favor of Molitor staying as manager. 1-0 game where the primary pitcher is a young guy getting his feet wet. You want to put in your best relievers to give that guy the best chance to feel good about himself and build his confidence.

It would be a lot easier if the offense wasn't making it so that 4 runs will beat you.

 

Research shows it is almost totally familiarity, and not fatigue.

Do you recall what kind of statistical technique they used to separate the two? They are so highly correlated.

A painter should not paint what he sees, but what will be seen.-- Paul Valery


#24 Mike Sixel

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Posted 26 September 2018 - 12:16 PM

This one seems to show the other!

 

https://www.baseball...-order-penalty/

 

https://www.baseball...-order-penalty/

 

this one rebuts the first one, politely...

https://mglbaseball....he-best-pillow/

 

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I remain hopeful on Buxton and Sano.....but I'd not bet the franchise on them.


#25 Number3

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Posted 26 September 2018 - 12:19 PM

Twins lost and are 9-13 in September. Comparing Mauer to Killebrew is like comparing a goat to a bull. 2 different breeds of animals and I would bet that Killebrew could not have cared less what his total base count for his career was and could not have told you what it was if you asked him.

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#26 ashburyjohn

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Posted 26 September 2018 - 01:19 PM

Twins lost and are 9-13 in September. Comparing Mauer to Killebrew is like comparing a goat to a bull. 2 different breeds of animals and I would bet that Killebrew could not have cared less what his total base count for his career was and could not have told you what it was if you asked him.

Joe's not the hitter Harmon was, but this is probably going too far. Harmon would get on base at a clip in the high .300s when his leagues' average was in the low .300s, and he was the league leader in walks several times. I suppose one can lead the league in something bad without intending to, but leading the league in something positive indicates purpose.

 

Clearly his walks were due to being pitched extraordinarily carefully, moreso than some superhuman batting eye, but it indicates that he didn't give in to the pitcher when he wasn't being given good pitches to hit.

 

OBP was a known statistic even back in the day. I'd be interested in seeing an interview in which Harmon was asked about his walk totals. I bet his thoughtfulness on the topic would surprise some. I'd be surprised if he didn't feel that his walks were helping his team.

 

And so I bet if he were here, to be asked, he'd praise Joe for getting on base the way he has done.

 

He might also have slipped Joe the needle about power. :)

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#27 USAFChief

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Posted 26 September 2018 - 01:34 PM

It's an interesting question: how locked in should you be to the "avoid the 3rd time through" strategy? How do you evaluate how much of a pitcher's struggles the 3rd time through against a team's best hitters is due to fatigue or familiarity? If it's familiarity, then a fairly rigid approach makes sense. If it's due more to fatigue, then you have to think about it a little more, especially if a guy is at 75 pitches and rolling along.
 
nice to see Kohl Stewart have another good outing, though obviously September production is always a little suspect (see also Parmelee, Chris). The decline in BBs is exactly what he needs to be doing and it's nice to see how close his FIP is to his ERA. he's a very interesting case right now, and I think the Twins were fortunate he slipped through Rule 5 last year.


It is an interesting question.

My own bias is—and this is long held, and unrelated to the opener/primary pitcher idea—is a strong preference to get the starter out BEFORE he runs into trouble rather than after. So I will say that in this case, with a pitcher such as Stewart, if you get six shutout innings, and he’s given you as much or more than you could have hoped for, turn a clean inning over to the pen, and ask them to do what you have them there for.

I don’t know what would have happened in this specific case, but over time, I think that’s the way to go.
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#28 Riverbrian

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Posted 26 September 2018 - 02:08 PM

 

It's weird, Molly seems to have a really difficult time trusting relievers, but then once he does, it's ride or die. He'll keep rolling with that guy even through a big slump.

 

Some of that "stick to your guns" mentality can be productive over the course of a long season, but it's clear this is more than just a blip on the radar for Trevor. He's really fighting it right now.

 

 

 

You hit the nail on the head. This is my criticism of Paul Molitor. I don't know if this is Paul or a management directive that he has to follow or if it's a collective agreement... but this is my criticism to whomever is making these decisions. I assume it is Molitor because he did the same thing in 2016 when his supervisors were elsewhere... Kepler and Polanco were called up as backups and benched while the chosen starters played the team into a first pick overall in 2017.  

 

Players are allowed to fail for long stretches before adjustments are finally made (if ever). The position players, the bullpen, the rotation, he seems to lock them into roles and then he throws away the key. We went down with the ship.

 

I'm not considering the argument that there is nobody else to turn to because we get the same amount of roster spaces as every other team.If a manager doesn't utilize those roster spaces when the guys he is utilizing are performing woefully that will never be an excuse in my eyes. Even the worm will turn. Put up a fight. We had players that needed some time off and still do. 

 

McGill was being utilized to near full extent until Phil Hughes was traded and then McGill was given the long reliever job and he then became severely under utilized waiting to pitch multiple innings in a lopsided contest. Reed and Pressly were going through a long stretch of struggles and they remain the set-up guys throughout. Hildenberger now going through a long stetch of struggle and he remains a go to guy even though there are multiple September options to try instead. 

 

Astudillo is brought up as a utility guy and never catches... Then he is brought up as a catcher and he is never utility. 

 

Morrison, Sano, Buxton, Dozier, Wilson playing well below replacement level for a long stretch and in the lineup every day while players who were out-performing them are forced to watch them not perform from the bench. 

 

I don't know who is responsible but I do feel that they can change. I've seen Molitor convert to the new concept of using an opener so I know he can convert to something else. If Molitor or whomever in the front office can commit to not going down with the ship. I have no problem with them coming back next year for 2019.

 

If they can't... I will personally want someone else to take over the job.

 

It doesn't mean that you bench Dozier when he is struggling so Petit can play... But it does mean that Dozier has to check the lineup card to see if he is on it until he turns it around. 

 

 

25 Guys who can play and 25 guys who are utilized and 25 guys in honest to god competition for the bulk of the playing time. I'm watching other teams do it successfully so this approach is no longer unprecedented.

 

I'm now watching the Indians add Josh Donaldson to 3B which moved Jose Ramirez to 2B and Jason Kipnis to CF. Ramirez and Kipnis have some experience at 2B and CF (although Kipnis CF experience is pretty limited) but... neither player got reps during the season but they are making the move now to accommodate Josh Donaldson right now during the home stretch. If the Indians would have been committed to flexibility all year long, they could have been preparing for a Josh Donaldson type acquisition all year long but instead... they wait until the end of August to slam it all into place.  

 

25 guys who can play... Roster Flexibility... No tolerance of sub .200 BA or sub .700 OPS numbers.

 

I will settle for nothing less. 

 

Hildenberger is just another example as we close out 2018 and turn our eyes to 2019. 

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#29 Riverbrian

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Posted 26 September 2018 - 02:10 PM

Kohl Stewart... even when he had the rough start... I could see with my eyeballs that he has stuff. Incredible movement that will make it hard for guys to square him up. I liked him from day one and I believe he has a future. 

 

Gonsalves... still needs to show me something. 

 

Stewart is ahead of Gonsalves on my personal depth chart. 

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#30 Mike Sixel

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Posted 26 September 2018 - 02:34 PM

 

It is an interesting question.

My own bias is—and this is long held, and unrelated to the opener/primary pitcher idea—is a strong preference to get the starter out BEFORE he runs into trouble rather than after. So I will say that in this case, with a pitcher such as Stewart, if you get six shutout innings, and he’s given you as much or more than you could have hoped for, turn a clean inning over to the pen, and ask them to do what you have them there for.

I don’t know what would have happened in this specific case, but over time, I think that’s the way to go.

 

100% agree.

I remain hopeful on Buxton and Sano.....but I'd not bet the franchise on them.


#31 TheLeviathan

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Posted 26 September 2018 - 09:06 PM

I think this conversation should be one people remember in criticizing a manager.We have two sides on the Stewart decision making rational arguments about a hypothetical situation.

 

It's a tough spot to be in to consistently predict which hypothetical is the one to go with.I tend to side with Chief's perspective on the macro level, but that doesn't stop people from complaining on the micro.Maybe it should temper it a bit though.




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