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2013... Any Chance?

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#1 kevinlillie

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 09:51 AM

Do we have ANY chance to be competitive next year? What do you think will happen in the offseason? I'm tired of watching crappy baseball. I was at the Twins game last week and all I could do was sit there and think 2 years ago, we were a playoff team...

#2 Nick Nelson

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 09:58 AM

Many people say no, I say yes. The lineup is where it needs to be and the bullpen is close. The question is, can Terry Ryan build a moderately decent rotation from the ground up in one offseason?

#3 kevinlillie

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 10:07 AM

I agree - the line up is great and the bullpen is decent. It all comes down to starting pitching... if TR can get 2 solid SP via trade or free agency, I think we have a shot, considering the AL Central isn't a strong division. I imagine we will resign Baker to an incentive based contract, but the only person I think is guaranteed to be in the rotation next year is Scott Diamond, hopefully as a back of the rotation pitcher.

#4 Winston Smith

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 10:17 AM

I often hear that it can't be Gardy's fault because he doesn't have good players to work with. Then we hear some of the same people say we're only a few players away from competing. How can both those be true?
The last two years we are 63 games under 500. The next worst team in the AL is the Mariners at 36 under. Logically it would seem that this team needs a lot more than a couple pieces to be a serious playoff team. Could they improve enough to hang around the Central for most of the season probably. But to be a serious playoff team I just can't see it.
Then the question is do you band aid a team together so you might hang around most of the season and if so does that set back a real rebuilding effort? It would seem to me you can't do both.

#5 Nick Nelson

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 10:26 AM

It would seem to me you can't do both.

Why not? How does signing 1 or 2 free agent starters and trading Morneau or Span for pitching help hinder your long-term rebuilding efforts?

#6 nicksaviking

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 10:32 AM

The A's and Orioles are in the drivers seat for the Wild Cards this year with what could be argued are inferior players to what the Twins have now. The Twins could get back in contention, but is it possible to get a winning attitude when the current players/managers are the same?

Is it a coincedence the Orioles and A's bought into winning baseball AND they have new managers? It may not be fair to fire Gardenhire after giving him the most pathetic pitching staff in the history of the team, but in this day and age, rarely do teams go into two year slumps and suddenly come out of it without first having a major shakeup. Admittedly, TK did it, but he had the longest leash in all of professional sports and it took 8 years to do so. My feeling is the Twins cannot compete in 2013 and will look pretty much the same as we see them now. I'll bet 2014 will have a lot of new faces and optimism will abound though.

#7 Riverbrian

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 10:41 AM

Of Course we have a chance in 2013 -- Signed Lloyd Christmas.

Actaully, Yes... We need pitching... Position Depth... Decent health and a good feeling to sustain us. If those three things are addressed... Yes... We have a chance.

#8 mike wants wins

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 10:49 AM

Any chance? Sure. Likely, no, not really. But we can always hope for substantial changes.

#9 Thegrin

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 11:09 AM

How about a 50/50 chance to be competitive ?

#10 Badsmerf

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 11:21 AM

Its possible. Gibson and Baker's contribution are the biggest questions going into the season. If the Twins can even get 1 quality pitcher and Baker/Gibson have positive contributions this team would be pretty decent. It certainly isn't out of this world for them to compete.

#11 gunnarthor

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 11:25 AM

I think Nick's right - we just need to improve the rotation. Here's an interesting stat that probably says nothing. The Twins position players as a team are 3rd in the AL in bWAR, behind the Yanks and Angels and 4th in fWAR behind those two and the Rangers.

Ryan did a good job improving the lineup and MI defense from where it was in 2011. I don't know how he'll improve the rotation. Frankly, I think we have a 6-7 guys who could all be #5 starters, none should be good for 20+ starts. (I still think Hendriks can turn into a good starter but it'll probably take him a few seasons to get there). I don't know how he gets a solid rotation. On the other hand, he only has to go from unbelievably bad to slightly below average for the Twins to be competitive.

#12 ashburyjohn

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 11:25 AM

Many people say no, I say yes. The lineup is where it needs to be and the bullpen is close. The question is, can Terry Ryan build a moderately decent rotation from the ground up in one offseason?


The lineup is league-average offensively and about average on defense as well. The bullpen has been good but there are soft spots that I think might get exposed worse in a real pennant race. If Ryan works hard and builds a "moderately decent" rotation, that also smacks of .500 ball. Where is the upside to push above that into actual contention? I don't see it. Even more is needed.

#13 ashburyjohn

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 11:30 AM

Of Course we have a chance in 2013 -- Signed Lloyd Christmas.


Gee, between Dumb and Dumber, and Alfred E. Neuman, you've got quite the roster of experts to turn to. :)

#14 Winston Smith

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 11:36 AM

It would seem to me you can't do both.

Why not? How does signing 1 or 2 free agent starters and trading Morneau or Span for pitching help hinder your long-term rebuilding efforts?

Ryan made it clear he wasn't signing any of the top free agent pitchers. Maybe he was blowing smoke.
Trading for pitching help? Maybe that can work but most teams aren't giving up decent pitching. However, I think it makes sense at this time to trade all of these guys that will bring back decent prospects, if that's possible, and go young. I don't think trading one guy will turn the team around. Of course maybe the guys we have won't bring back decent help and in that case we are stuck without spending for it.
Last and last seems to indicate that the present course isn't working.

#15 wavedog

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 11:40 AM

I think most of us thought last year was a fluke with many injuries and we would be back close to a .500 team this year. Then the entire starting rotation either was injured (Baker, Pavano) or stunk (Marquis, Liriano, Blackburn). If Baker and Gibson come back and pitch well and we sign another starting pitcher or two and Diamond comes close to his performance this year - we could have a decent season. In the Central that could mean contending. Overall though that may be a lot to expect with the recent injury history of this team. Another season like the last 2 and doing it the Twins Way will take on a whole new meaning.

#16 JB_Iowa

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 11:41 AM

Depends on what you are looking for. Do you define staying in the A.L. Central race until August as competitive? Then I suppose there is a chance (probably less than 30% though).

Is it staying in the A. L. Central race until September? Still probably a chance but less than 15% I would think. But then, I never discount the ability of other A.L. Central teams to implode.

Being truly competitive in the sense of being able to compete with the best teams in the league? Less than 5% (maybe less than 1%).

I know the added playoff spots make 1 more team "competitive" in each league -- and while there is some angst over the N.L. Wild card race, I don't see that happening in the American League. There will still be 3 or 4 playoff-type teams in the A. L. East and probably 2 in the A.L. West. I definitely don't see the Twins in competition for a Wild Card spot. If you think of "competitive" as being in the playoffs, the best bet is for an implosion of other teams in the Central and for the Twins to somehow squeak by.

Part of baseball is thinking that there is a chance at the beginning of EVERY season. I just don't see it as a very big chance for the Twins.

#17 powrwrap

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 11:42 AM

[quote name='kevinlillie']Do we have ANY chance to be competitive next year? [/QUOTE]

Nope, none. But the Twins will think they have a shot and another chance at starting fresh will be lost.


[QUOTE] What do you think will happen in the offseason? [/QUOTE]

Terry Ryan will sign a mid level starting pitcher free agent (could even be Pavano) and possibly trade Span for a #4 or #5 type starter. They will have a pathetic starting rotation consisting of 5 guys that throw about 90-92 mph and don't have an out pitch. You won't see Kyle Gibson until June and he will be on an innings pitched count. The Twins will go internally for SS, 2B, and 3B. There will be no bench strength.

[QUOTE]I'm tired of watching crappy baseball. I was at the Twins game last week and all I could do was sit there and think 2 years ago, we were a playoff team...[/QUOTE]

Sorry, but get ready for another year of the same.
[FONT=comic sans ms][COLOR=#000000]"Baseball is like church. Many attend, few understand." [/COLOR][/FONT]

#18 Shane Wahl

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 11:54 AM

A full season with the current roster with decent health would mean 78-81 wins. Fixing the bullpen gets it to .500. Two rotation additions and some sort of contribution from Baker and Gibson could add 10 wins.

#19 Boom Boom

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 12:11 PM

I don't think Terry Ryan will improve the rotation enough.

I think Span will be traded for a pitcher, but we're going to be disappointed with the caliber of pitcher received. I'm not counting on positive contributions from Baker. And TR already said he's not going after the best pitchers in free agency.

So the team will be improved, but not enough. I predict about 75 wins.

#20 Riverbrian

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 12:19 PM

Of Course we have a chance in 2013 -- Signed Lloyd Christmas.


Gee, between Dumb and Dumber, and Alfred E. Neuman, you've got quite the roster of experts to turn to. :)


I have as much knowledge as both of them.

#21 gmarais66

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 01:10 PM

If you take apart this season and identify the problems that led them to where they are now, and if those problems can be addressed during the offseason, I think the Twins have a good chance of competing next season, if they stay healthy... As many have already said, the biggest problem this season has been starting pitching... How many teams, no matter how good their offense and defense is, could survive losing all five of their starting pitchers from the beginning of the season? Couple that with having few options to replace those starters in the upper levels of the minor league system and you have a real disaster on your hands... However, Diamond and Deduno, and to a lesser extent DeVries have shown some potential to contribute next season... Each now has some significant major league experience and all three could be even better next year, although I wouldn't want to bet on that... One bright spot for next season should be the return of Gibson. I think many people are severely underestimating how good he could be next season... The job for Ryan this off season will be to pick up two solid pitchers, who give the team a chance to win, every time they take the mound... Whether that's through a trade or a free agent signing, it has to happen and Ryan knows it. He did a great job picking up Willingham and Doumit last winter, if he can pick up the pitching versions of those guys this winter, the Twins will be in good shape.
The Twins' offense had been pretty solid this season, including Span, Revere, Mauer, Morneau, Willingham, Doumit and Plouffe... The defense has made too many errors, but has been much better than last year... The one area the team could really use some improvement is to pick up one or two middle infielders. Between Florimon and Dozier, they might be able to adequately fill the SS position, but if they could get a good second baseman who can hit and get on base consitently, I think it would be a vast improvement in the lineup... So yes, the Twins can compete next season, but they have to make the right moves to make it happen...

#22 Teflon

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 01:10 PM

Many people say no, I say yes. The lineup is where it needs to be and the bullpen is close. The question is, can Terry Ryan build a moderately decent rotation from the ground up in one offseason?


The Twins of 1984 would be an example of a year in which this happened. Ken Schrom - who had been the 1983 Twins' version of Scott Diamond -compiled the only winning record among the starting rotation in 1983 at 15-8. The staff ERA was 4.66 and the team won 70 games. In the off-season, the Twins sent outfielder Gary Ward to the Rangers for starting pitchers Mike Smithson (10-14) and John Butcher. (6-6). Smithson and Butcher joined Schrom and Frank Viola (7-15) at the top of the rotation. While Schrom disappointed (5-11), Smithson and Butcher combined for 28 wins with ERA's in the mid 3's and Viola emerged from a horrific 1983 to become one of the league's top lefties in 84 with 18 victories. The Twins ERA dropped to 3.85 and the team improved to 81 wins.

So who on 2012 Twins has a comparable trade value as a Gary Ward in 1983?

#23 ericchri

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 02:20 PM

The Twins have gotten to my ultimate nightmare of having just enough good players and "players with potential" to look like they could compete if "things go right." So you kind of have to try and compete even though you need an awful lot of things to break right for it to happen. Any chance? Sure. I'm not sure I expect it, but it's definitely possible. To deny the possibility of competing is to ignore the obvious potential. To unflinchingly expect to compete is also to ignore the obvious flaws.

Perhaps the most frustrating thing about this situation is their best chance to compete next year probably comes from standing pat with their entire hitting lineup and getting lucky signing a couple FA pitchers. After seasons like these last couple, the desire to rip up the team and start over again is pretty high. Trading Span and/or Morneau seem logical, but also make that lineup really thin, there's no depth left to account for prolonged injuries or slumps/underperformance from the remaining members. It's hard to feel confident the team will be good next year no matter what they do. There's too much hoping for luck no matter what decision you make.

But then again, as the A's and Orioles show, "that's why they play the games."

#24 mike wants wins

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 02:38 PM

To the guy above, where is the viola on this roster?

If your scenario for competing is two guys coming back from surgery being good, and a gm that has never before signed a big time pitcher signing two of them, and everyone staying healthy, what are the odds those all happen?

#25 peterb18

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 02:54 PM

To the guy above, where is the viola on this roster?

If your scenario for competing is two guys coming back from surgery being good, and a gm that has never before signed a big time pitcher signing two of them, and everyone staying healthy, what are the odds those all happen?


Good analysis---can only add--willingness and desire from ownership is needed!

#26 Todd G

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 03:07 PM

Best case scenario is we'll be average next year.

Our lineup is average (sorry, not great, check out runs scored), and we're wildly inconsistant. Our middle infield needs an upgrade no matter what management says or thinks. The guys we've got are just not viable starting middle infielders.

And then the starting pitching which won't be upgraded via free agency . . .

#27 one_eyed_jack

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 04:49 PM

To compete for the division? Sure. A lot of people dismiss the Twins success in the 00's with the "weak division" argument, but I think the division now is as weak as it's been in a long time. The Whities have been good enough to win it this year, but can they realistically count on AJ, Rios and Dunn all having career years again? The Tigers got a lot of hype after the Fielder signing, but their flaws have been exposed. The Indians are a mess. The Royals have been better lately, but still look stuck in perpetual 'rebuilding' mode.

So the division is there for the taking. And if TR can assemble even a mediocre starting rotation without giving up too much offense,it should be within reach.

Competing beyond that? That would require something more. Divine intervention perhaps.

#28 Lesser Dali

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 05:21 PM

For the Twins to be competitive, let alone a contender. The following things need to happen:

Starting Pitchers:
1. Twins sign a Shaun Marcum type and he blossoms winning 20 games, with very good peripherals, taking advantage of the pitching friendly environment of Target Field.
2. Liriano Misses Anderson and Gardenhire and he signs a team friendly contract. Reaching deep within himself, he is able to harness his enigmatic pitching abilities. Winning 17 games, Striking Out 230, with very good all around peripherals.
3. Scott Diamond has a comparable season to the one he is having with 200 innings pitched.
4. The 4-5 Starters (Baker, Gibson, Deduno. John Doe 1, 2, or 3) are able to pitch to the level of a contending teams 4 and 5 starters

Relief Pichers:
1. Perkins and Burton continue their progression as successful late inning relievers.
2. The Twins leave Duensing alone and let him establish himself in the bullpen and he rewards them by being the shut down left handed specialist.
3. 2 more relievers emerge from the woodwork and do an above acceptable job.

Position Players:
C - Mauer has an elite BA season. .340+BA, 90RBI, 550+PA's
1B - Morneau. He reclaims the ability to hit .300+, 30HR+, 100+RBI
2B - Someone who plays good defense and hits over .250 (not holding out too much hope)
SS - See 2B
3B - Mr. June spreads his wealth around the other months playing serviceable defense, hitting .250+ with 25+ HR's
LF - Willingham repeats this season.
CF - Revere (I hate speculating on trades, but I will go with the overall concensus that Span is traded for a few decent prospects who won't be able to help immediately). Revere bats .300+, 100+ Runs Scored, 50 stolen bases.
RF - Parmelee: .280+ Average, 20+HR's, 85+RBI's
DH - Doumit repeats this season

Bench: Mastroianni, Carroll, Herrmann, Some Joe Cool bench player who can hit a HR off the bench once in a while.

This is within the realm possibility, Right?

#29 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 05:28 PM

For the Twins to be competitive, let alone a contender. The following things need to happen:

Starting Pitchers:
1. Twins sign a Shaun Marcum type and he blossoms winning 20 games, with very good peripherals, taking advantage of the pitching friendly environment of Target Field.
2. Liriano Misses Anderson and Gardenhire and he signs a team friendly contract. Reaching deep within himself, he is able to harness his enigmatic pitching abilities. Winning 17 games, Striking Out 230, with very good all around peripherals.
3. Scott Diamond has a comparable season to the one he is having with 200 innings pitched.
4. The 4-5 Starters (Baker, Gibson, Deduno. John Doe 1, 2, or 3) are able to pitch to the level of a contending teams 4 and 5 starters

Relief Pichers:
1. Perkins and Burton continue their progression as successful late inning relievers.
2. The Twins leave Duensing alone and let him establish himself in the bullpen and he rewards them by being the shut down left handed specialist.
3. 2 more relievers emerge from the woodwork and do an above acceptable job.

Position Players:
C - Mauer has an elite BA season. .340+BA, 90RBI, 550+PA's
1B - Morneau. He reclaims the ability to hit .300+, 30HR+, 100+RBI
2B - Someone who plays good defense and hits over .250 (not holding out too much hope)
SS - See 2B
3B - Mr. June spreads his wealth around the other months playing serviceable defense, hitting .250+ with 25+ HR's
LF - Willingham repeats this season.
CF - Revere (I hate speculating on trades, but I will go with the overall concensus that Span is traded for a few decent prospects who won't be able to help immediately). Revere bats .300+, 100+ Runs Scored, 50 stolen bases.
RF - Parmelee: .280+ Average, 20+HR's, 85+RBI's
DH - Doumit repeats this season

Bench: Mastroianni, Carroll, Herrmann, Some Joe Cool bench player who can hit a HR off the bench once in a while.

This is within the realm possibility, Right?


That's "best team in baseball", not "contending".

#30 Rosterman

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 05:30 PM

I like Zodiac. Of course, we need stellar years from an aging Willingham, Plouffe has to be a year-round third sacker, and the Twins hav to find something to fill 2B/SS/ Can Parmelee shine as a future Cuddyer in RF? The strength is the bullpen. Enough arms to run thru 7-10 pitchers during the season. Do the Twins need a lefty starter? Okay, they need 5 starters.
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