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Twins select RHP Austin Adams

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#1 spycake

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Posted 16 May 2019 - 09:37 AM

I know it's been mentioned elsewhere, but there wasn't much discussion, so I thought I'd give Adams his own thread.

 

"Twins Option Trevor Hildenberger, Will Select Austin Adams"

 

https://www.mlbtrade...stin-adams.html

 

 

He hasn’t had much success in the Majors outside of a 3.78 ERA in 33 2/3 innings with the 2015 Indians, but Adams is currently sporting a 28-to-6 K/BB ratio in 18 innings of work with Triple-A Rochester. He’s been tagged for three homers in that time and has a 4.50 ERA on the whole, but the K/BB ratio and Adams’ whopping 58.5 percent ground-ball rate are genuinely intriguing.

 

Adams is out of options (as you might guess, given that he's 32 years old with experience across 3 MLB seasons). That 3.78 ERA season with Cleveland was in mop-up usage (.44 gmLI, similar to the very last guys in recent Twins pens, like Breslow, Hughes, Dean, Drake), and a very low K% (15%). His modest success then was mostly due to a low HR rate (his xFIP was about a run higher).

 

But as the excerpt above suggests, perhaps he's a different pitcher now? He has never really sustained a ground ball rate above ~48% before, or a K% approaching 36% before. It's also fair to ask whether 36% K% at AAA is even meaningful anymore -- old friend Oliver Drake is at 46.1% this year. A lot of older guys on this list who probably won't make much difference in MLB:

https://www.fangraph...yers=0&sort=8,d

 

Is Adams a diamond in the rough, or a placeholder? There weren't many attractive options for relievers at AAA to replace Hildenberger right now, so it's not clear.

 

EDIT TO ADD: It was mentioned in the comments that the Twins 40-man is full, so another move will have to be made. I suspect Ronald Torreyes will be DFA.

Edited by spycake, 16 May 2019 - 10:12 AM.

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#2 yarnivek1972

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Posted 16 May 2019 - 09:42 AM

Yes, K rates have to be considered in proper context. We are in a high K rate era. I would guess the league as a whole is somewhere between 20-25%.
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#3 Vanimal46

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Posted 16 May 2019 - 09:53 AM

Placeholder... I think they should have taken advantage of the opportunity and give someone in AA a shot.
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#4 diehardtwinsfan

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Posted 16 May 2019 - 09:57 AM

So do they need to DFA someone? Who goes? 

 

I would have expected to see Adrianza go when Sano got called up, but that didn't happen. That would also open up another 25 man spot.

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#5 spycake

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Posted 16 May 2019 - 10:02 AM

 

So do they need to DFA someone? Who goes? 

Yes, they will need to open a 40-man spot. (I forgot that Morin already took De Jong's open spot.)

 

But it would be rather easy to cut Ronald Torreyes at this point. He might get claimed with his option remaining, but he's hitting .128 in AAA and has no path toward playing time in the MLB infield.

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#6 PseudoSABR

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Posted 16 May 2019 - 10:04 AM

 

So do they need to DFA someone? Who goes? 

 

I would have expected to see Adrianza go when Sano got called up, but that didn't happen. That would also open up another 25 man spot.

Can they transfer someone to the 60 DL? Maybe Reed, even though he's on a rehab assignment.


#7 twins_89

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Posted 16 May 2019 - 10:07 AM

To open up a 40 man roster spot I'm guessing Reed (waive or 60 day IL) or Torreyes are removed.


#8 spycake

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Posted 16 May 2019 - 10:10 AM

 

Yes, K rates have to be considered in proper context. We are in a high K rate era. I would guess the league as a whole is somewhere between 20-25%.

Yes, the International League K% is 23.2%. Five years ago, it was only 19.4%.

 

I imagine it would be higher for relievers than starters too, but I don't know that split.

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#9 spycake

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Posted 16 May 2019 - 10:14 AM

 

Can they transfer someone to the 60 DL? Maybe Reed, even though he's on a rehab assignment.

They could do that too, but I'm guessing they'd feel such a move was premature for Garver and probably even Reed, given that the former could still be back sooner than 60 days and the latter is apparently healthy enough to pitch (although not pitch well).

 

If DFA Torreyes wasn't an option, perhaps they'd consider it, though. Or maybe they just wouldn't have added Adams in that case.


#10 diehardtwinsfan

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Posted 16 May 2019 - 10:16 AM

 

They could do that too, but I'm guessing they'd feel such a move was premature for Garver and probably even Reed, given that the former could still be back sooner than 60 days and the latter is apparently healthy enough to pitch (although not pitch well).

 

If DFA Torreyes wasn't an option, perhaps they'd consider it, though. Or maybe they just wouldn't have added Adams in that case.

 

Reed is rehabbing right now. Putting him on the 50 man buys them what, a couple weeks? Also, b/c of rehab he's already on a clock to his return to MLB. 


#11 USAFChief

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Posted 16 May 2019 - 10:19 AM

yuk.

 

The front office has done a nice job in many areas, but the bullpen situation, both in terms of MLB options and 40 man options, is abysmal.

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Cutting my carbs...with a pizza slicer.


#12 spycake

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Posted 16 May 2019 - 10:21 AM

 

Reed is rehabbing right now. Putting him on the 50 man buys them what, a couple weeks? Also, b/c of rehab he's already on a clock to his return to MLB. 

True. I guess they could transfer Reed to the 60-day DL without any real cost, except he couldn't be activated until May 27th at the earliest. It doesn't look like he would be activated before then anyway!

 

Edit to add: Reed's 30 days of rehab can run up through June 5th. Although they could sit him for at least a week and reassign him to a new rehab stint -- we did that with Ervin last year when he experienced a setback on his first rehab. Gets a little tricky, because Reed may consider himself healthy enough at some point to object to that. Phil Hughes was in a similar spot last year -- healthy enough to pitch, but not pitch well, so the 60-day DL wasn't really an option. We chose to DFA/trade him, and the Padres had to release him, rather than 60-day DL him.

Edited by spycake, 16 May 2019 - 10:27 AM.

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#13 TFRazor

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Posted 16 May 2019 - 10:25 AM

I honestly didn't expect Harper to be any great shakes out of the pen when he came north with the team from ST. I will happily admit that he has proven me wrong so far and has been effective. Perhaps the analytics guys and Wes Johnson can work their magic twice.

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#14 spycake

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Posted 16 May 2019 - 10:36 AM

 

I honestly didn't expect Harper to be any great shakes out of the pen when he came north with the team from ST. I will happily admit that he has proven me wrong so far and has been effective. Perhaps the analytics guys and Wes Johnson can work their magic twice.

True, but Harper has largely been used in lower leverage spots so far -- a .78 gmLI (game-entering leverage index). 1.0 is average. Trusted relievers are generally at 1.2 or higher; top set-up men and closers around 1.7.

 

Hildenberger led the Twins with a 2.01 gmLI so far in 2019, and someone else is going to have to step into those spots now (and perhaps be exposed):

https://www.baseball...ue_pitching::14

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#15 nicksaviking

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Posted 16 May 2019 - 10:47 AM

It was a long shot that Magill would last as long as he has, but then Harper, than Morin now Adams? 

 

I hope their luck (ugh, or skill if it's legit) holds in identifying these journeymen relievers. Every pen arm still on the roster has gotten the job done thus far so it's hard not to at least give some benefit of the doubt, but that's got to be the most unexciting relief corps I've seen in a long time.

 

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#16 Vanimal46

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Posted 16 May 2019 - 10:49 AM

yuk.

The front office has done a nice job in many areas, but the bullpen situation, both in terms of MLB options and 40 man options, is abysmal.


What good is a top rated farm system if there aren't readily available reinforcements for the MLB team?
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#17 ashbury

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Posted 16 May 2019 - 10:49 AM

yuk.

 

The front office has done a nice job in many areas, but the bullpen situation, both in terms of MLB options and 40 man options, is abysmal.

Concur. It's fine to sign a few arms like this during the off-season, to see what they might have to offer, through continued tinkering with adding a pitch or changing a delivery. But they need to dominate at AAA, for it to pay off in a call to the majors. If somehow our evaluators are seeing something beyond his numbers, it will be a PhD course in Inside Baseball and I will gladly tip my cap to them if it pays off; but I am not expecting this outcome.

 

To add to my dismay, when I look up Austin Adams on b-r.com, I pick the wrong one. "No, dummy, not the guy who pitched in the majors 2017-2019. The one who pitched 2014-2016." Oh, of course! Him!

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So, in conclusion, what was your question again?


#18 MMMordabito

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Posted 16 May 2019 - 10:50 AM

Adams has got to be a placeholder just having his turn open on this revolving door.We'll probably see this over the next couple months until the trade deadline approach is decided.

 

I hope Falvine is going to choose to "go for it" sooner rather than later when Will Smith, Mychal Givens, et al. are already wearing new uniforms.

 

Understand them trying to be as patient as possible though.The prospect prices for those guys will be sky high this early in the season.

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#19 twins_89

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Posted 16 May 2019 - 10:55 AM

 

It was a long shot that Magill would last as long as he has, but then Harper, than Morin now Adams? 

 

I hope their luck (ugh, or skill if it's legit) holds in identifying these journeymen relievers. Every pen arm still on the roster has gotten the job done thus far so it's hard not to at least give some benefit of the doubt, but that's got to be the most unexciting relief corps I've seen in a long time.

 

Magill, Harper, Morin, and Adams are pitchers that would be fine as the 7th or 8th guys in the bullpen. Having 4 of that type of reliever on the 25 man roster is asking for trouble.

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#20 KirbyDome89

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Posted 16 May 2019 - 10:56 AM

 

yuk.

 

The front office has done a nice job in many areas, but the bullpen situation, both in terms of MLB options and 40 man options, is abysmal.

Winning is a strong perfume.

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