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Article: Craig Kimbrel and Risk Tolerance

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#21 Vanimal46

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 06:50 AM

The Twins made a trip to the Kimbrel auction with a list and a budget. Chicago, with those 12 blown saves, were panicky buyers. We'll all get to see what they bought in the coming months, and over THREE years. Chicago can assume that risk. Minnesota can't.

Good article. Now write one on the Ryan Presslys of 2019 that might bolster the Twins pen at the turn.


The Twins can absorb one bad contract if it comes to that. They're not in that dire of a financial situation. Last year they absorbed around $19 million in dead money with Ervin Santana and Phil Hughes.
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#22 highlander

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 07:36 AM

I want a Big, Bad, Bull in the back of the pen! A package of prospects for a Colome, Vazquez or Iglesias would sate my appetite. That improves everybody by moving them up an inning.
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#23 terrydactyls1947

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 07:58 AM

They don't need to acquire the best reliever in baseball. Just a good one or two. Do the descriptors you omitted – "prime-aged relievers, ideally with an untapped strength, under multiple years of control" – seem that unattainable in a sea of ready sellers? These Twins have shown an ability to help some pitchers discover new levels, no?
 
 

I didn't say they were alone at the forefront. Houston is obviously there too. Believe me, I didn't like the Pressly trade (I consider it this FO's worst move) but I wouldn't really care if the Twins didn't become contenders a year later. 
 
There are plenty of teams with no short-term hopes, and those teams have no reason not to deal present value for future value. The Twins are in a very good position.
 
 

This is a point I think everyone needs to recognize. Tampa made very fair offers. Kimbrel's preferences were no secret. The Twins would've probably had to outbid the Cubs, maybe by a sizable margin, to woo him. But it seems like the attitude of some is "They should've signed him, no matter what it took." That's utterly insane to me.

Absolutely. People seem to forget that there are two sides in a FA acquisition. And if one side prefers deep dish pizza rather than pierogies, the acquisition doesn't happen.
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#24 USAFChief

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 08:08 AM

When all else fails, break out the ol' "they wouldn't want to come to Minnesota anyway" excuse, I guess.

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#25 blindeke

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 08:09 AM

Your reminder that signing free agent relievers does not work that often: 

 

https://www.mlbtrade...-relievers.html

 

I would have been thrilled if the Twins had inked Robertson or Miller, but look at how they're pitching.

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#26 tarheeltwinsfan

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 08:15 AM

 

Thanks, Nick, for a rational statement of the situation and realistic reasons for not going overboard for a player with legitimate questions.

What he said.

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#27 Mike Sixel

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 08:23 AM

Your reminder that signing free agent relievers does not work that often:

https://www.mlbtrade...-relievers.html

I would have been thrilled if the Twins had inked Robertson or Miller, but look at how they're pitching.


How has relying on the AAA pitchers worked? What if those teams had to drop into their minors, would that be better? What is the better alternative?

It's IL now, btw, not DL.....


#28 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 08:24 AM

While I'm disappointed that the Twins didn't land Kimbrel, I hope their refusal to buy into a third year was made for the right reasons (analytics showing an imminent decline in productivity), not the wrong reasons (money).

 

The Cubs can swallow the money if Kimbrel goes south, the Twins do not have the same luxury.

 

Unfortunately, we'll likely never know why the decision was made.

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#29 TheLeviathan

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 08:25 AM

 

How has relying on the AAA pitchers worked? What if those teams had to drop into their minors, would that be better? What is the better alternative?

 

Pretty well?The Twins bullpen has been pretty good so far. 

 

What we're talking about is how we upgrade to turn something we're all worried about into something we're not.But make no mistake, performance wise, this group has been good so far.

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#30 Craig Arko

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 08:25 AM

Clearly Kimbrel was deserving of an 8 year, 184 million dollar contract. :)
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#31 Nick Nelson

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 08:29 AM

 

There's going to be a "sea of ready sellers" for prime age relievers under multiple years of control? Your plan is for multiple teams to make as bad a trade as the Twins did with Pressly? 

 

 Let's hope you're right.

Again, the Pressly trade wouldn't have been bad if the Twins didn't transform from also-rans to top contenders in a flash. Many teams have no legitimate hopes of that happening. In that case, the trade wouldn't be bad. If the Twins still sucked I'd much rather have the prospects than Pressly. There is zero purpose in keeping around effective relief pitchers on 90-loss teams when you can swap them for legit high-upside prospects. 

 

The Twins have an over-abundance of mid-tier prospect types so it's kinda funny how many fans are suddenly clutching them like pearls.  

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#32 Vanimal46

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 08:31 AM

While I'm disappointed that the Twins didn't land Kimbrel, I hope their refusal to buy into a third year was made for the right reasons (analytics showing an imminent decline in productivity), not the wrong reasons (money).

The Cubs can swallow the money if Kimbrel goes south, the Twins do not have the same luxury.

Unfortunately, we'll likely never know why the decision was made.


The Twins are absolutely able to swallow dead money. Not as much as Chicago, LA, and New York can. Last year the Twins swallowed $19 million alone with Erv and Phil Hughes' contracts. As long as they don't make it a habit and have $50+ million in dead money, they will be just fine.
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#33 Mike Sixel

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 08:32 AM

Again, the Pressly trade wouldn't have been bad if the Twins didn't transform from also-rans to top contenders in a flash. Many teams have no legitimate hopes of that happening. In that case, the trade wouldn't be bad. If the Twins still sucked I'd much rather have the prospects than Pressly. There is zero purpose in keeping around effective relief pitchers on 90-loss teams when you can swap them for legit high-upside prospects.

The Twins have an over-abundance of mid-tier prospect types so it's kinda funny how many fans are suddenly clutching them like pearls.

That's not his point. Chief is all for trading prospects. He doesn't think multiple, or even one, Pressley types is out there and will be traded for medium prospects, or at all.

Edited by Mike Sixel, 07 June 2019 - 08:33 AM.

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It's IL now, btw, not DL.....


#34 TheLeviathan

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 08:36 AM

 

The Twins are absolutely able to swallow dead money. Not as much as Chicago, LA, and New York can. Last year the Twins swallowed $19 million alone with Erv and Phil Hughes' contracts. As long as they don't make it a habit and have $50+ million in dead money, they will be just fine.

 

Just because I can afford to pay you 100 grand for your Pontiac Aztek doesn't mean I have to.

 

Look, I wanted Kimbrel, but there is a point at which we want our front office assessing risk and walking away from deals they feel the numbers don't justify.

 

We shouldn't let our disappointment (which I share) cause us to think recklessness is a better idea.

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#35 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 08:36 AM

 

The Twins are absolutely able to swallow dead money. Not as much as Chicago, LA, and New York can. Last year the Twins swallowed $19 million alone with Erv and Phil Hughes' contracts. As long as they don't make it a habit and have $50+ million in dead money, they will be just fine.

Sure, the Twins *technically* can swallow the money but if your analytical analysis suggests decline and a reliever wants $16m+ a year, you don't just take on that money because you can technically eat it if you're right about the situation. That's really bad asset management.

 

For good and bad, this front office appears to operate on a pretty strict "dollar to expected performance" ratio. While I wanted to see them land Kimbrel, I'd prefer to see them continue to operate that way and not throw it out the window in an emotional decision.

 

And time will tell if they're right or not.

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#36 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 08:37 AM

 

Just because I can afford to pay you 100 grand for your Pontiac Aztek doesn't mean I have to.

 

Look, I wanted Kimbrel, but there is a point at which we want our front office assessing risk and walking away from deals they feel the numbers don't justify.

 

We shouldn't let our disappointment (which I share) cause us to think recklessness is a better idea.

Yes. A team like the Cubs can say "what the hell, let's do it anyway" without moving the needle much on future decisions.

 

The Twins can't do the same.

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#37 Doomtints

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 08:40 AM

 

They don't need to acquire the best reliever in baseball. Just a good one or two. Do the descriptors you omitted – "prime-aged relievers, ideally with an untapped strength, under multiple years of control" – seem that unattainable in a sea of ready sellers? These Twins have shown an ability to help some pitchers discover new levels, no?

 

There's going to be a "sea of ready sellers" for prime age relievers under multiple years of control? Your plan is for multiple teams to make as bad a trade as the Twins did with Pressly? 

 

 Let's hope you're right.

 

The Pressly thing really seemed like the Twins felt like doing Houston a favor. It seemed like that then and it seems like it even more now.

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#38 USAFChief

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 08:41 AM

 

Pretty well?The Twins bullpen has been pretty good so far. 

 

What we're talking about is how we upgrade to turn something we're all worried about into something we're not.But make no mistake, performance wise, this group has been good so far.

The Twins bullpen is 10th in the AL by ERA.

 

 

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#39 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 08:42 AM

 

The Pressly thing really seemed like the Twins felt like doing Houston a favor. It seemed like that then and it seems like it even more now.

To be fair, I think the Pressly situation was a big reason why Molitor and part of the coaching staff was fired (and they had data to back up that decision to ownership after it happened), which is a probably a net win.

 

Ownership never should have put the restrictions they did on Falvine in the first place but that's water under the bridge at this point.

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#40 blindeke

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 08:43 AM

 

How has relying on the AAA pitchers worked? What if those teams had to drop into their minors, would that be better? What is the better alternative?

 

Great question. I assume the Twins are working on an answer because we sure could use another pitcher or two like Taylor Rogers...