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Front Page: Can the Twins Become the New Astros? Part 1

rocco baldelli wes johnson thad levine ryan pressly
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#21 Riverbrian

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 03:02 PM

Glad to see that Levine quote. Probably should not have traded Pressly, but reflecting back on past actions is a good habit to be in.


Lavine has mentioned in the past and eludes to it here. They were aware of Pressly’s capability but struggled with execution.

No way of knowing what that meant exactly but I have noticed a new pitching coach and manager since the Presley trade. Perhaps to improve execution?
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#22 birdwatcher

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 03:40 PM

Fun fact: Houston has two prospects to which MLB Pipeline gives an overall value of 50 or more.

 

The Twins have 13 of these prospects today.

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#23 USAFChief

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 04:18 PM

For me, the single biggest thing I wish the Twins emulate in the future is Houston's willingness/ability to get a deal done, despite any apparent obstacles.

 

When others wouldn't/couldn't find a way to acquire Verlander, they did.

Ditto Cole.

Ditto Pressly.

Ditto Greinke.

 

Two of those deals literally went down to the final few hours of a trade deadline. Their GM refused to quit trying, and ended up pulling off deals that others had dismissed.

 

There's a lot to like about how Houston does business. Add "determination" to the list, near the top for me.

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#24 DocBauer

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 04:22 PM

Fun fact: Houston has two prospects to which MLB Pipeline gives an overall value of 50 or more.

The Twins have 13 of these prospects today.


Quoting this post rather than the last as it's shorter, lol, and still on topic.

Absolutely agree the Twins system has the depth to make moves, similar to Houston. Also agree Houston has been very smart in their trades, not overpaying, even though they moved some quality ballplayers.

Again, I think the Twins can and will do the same. The one caveat I would make for any team, including our beloved Twins, is the factor of luck/opportunity.

Let me be more clear: when the Astros traded for Verlander, he was available. The Tigers were going nowhere. This past season there were cries for the Twins to get "their" Verlander. But really, Greinke was the only similar player available, and he had us on a no trade. Believed or not, there were reports the Twins at least called, but the conversation went nowhere.

Full credit to Houston for striking when opportunity is there. Is there that kind of arm available now via trade? Who do the Twins identify as that game changer?

If there is one, then I sure hope they are just as quick to strike as Houston has been on the past.
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#25 Vanimal46

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 05:04 PM

Fun fact: Houston has two prospects to which MLB Pipeline gives an overall value of 50 or more.

The Twins have 13 of these prospects today.


Step 1: Check

Step 2: Find a Verlander, Grienke, Cole, Osuna, and Pressly type available via trade.

Then we'll be Houston.
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#26 birdwatcher

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 05:32 PM

 

For me, the single biggest thing I wish the Twins emulate in the future is Houston's willingness/ability to get a deal done, despite any apparent obstacles.

 

When others wouldn't/couldn't find a way to acquire Verlander, they did.

Ditto Cole.

Ditto Pressly.

Ditto Greinke.

 

Two of those deals literally went down to the final few hours of a trade deadline. Their GM refused to quit trying, and ended up pulling off deals that others had dismissed.

 

There's a lot to like about how Houston does business. Add "determination" to the list, near the top for me.

 

 

I get this. Not an excuse here, but a possible explanation related to the FO's perception of timing, which we of course don't have to agree with (although it's nice when people grant an understanding of a different perspective). At least they were rather clear in saying earlier that they were trying to pry the window open whereas now they say they can feel a breeze. We all hope this leads to greater determination, right?

 

Okay, maybe this IS an excuse, Chief, but I can't help imagining a presentation by Greinke's agent: "Okay, which direction do you want me to go? The Astros, who are clear favorites to win the whole shebang this year, have room for at least two guys like you ad infinitum, and will host you in a no state tax state, or the Twins, who may have to sneak in the back door as a wild card, barely have room for one ace budget-wise, and will tax the darn heck out of you. Who do you wanna locker next door to, Verlander and his photo of Kate Bush, or Gibby and his big Desiderata poster?"

Edited by birdwatcher, 17 October 2019 - 05:43 PM.

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#27 Riverbrian

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 06:16 PM

 

. Who do you wanna locker next door to, Verlander and his photo of Kate Bush, or Gibby and his big Desiderata poster?"

 

You mean Justin or Melvin Bush don't ya?

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#28 birdwatcher

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 06:39 PM

 

You mean Justin or Melvin Bush don't ya?

 

 

I guess Greinke's agent doesn't know his celebrities. ;)

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#29 DocBauer

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 06:44 PM

I get this. Not an excuse here, but a possible explanation related to the FO's perception of timing, which we of course don't have to agree with (although it's nice when people grant an understanding of a different perspective). At least they were rather clear in saying earlier that they were trying to pry the window open whereas now they say they can feel a breeze. We all hope this leads to greater determination, right?

Okay, maybe this IS an excuse, Chief, but I can't help imagining a presentation by Greinke's agent: "Okay, which direction do you want me to go? The Astros, who are clear favorites to win the whole shebang this year, have room for at least two guys like you ad infinitum, and will host you in a no state tax state, or the Twins, who may have to sneak in the back door as a wild card, barely have room for one ace budget-wise, and will tax the darn heck out of you. Who do you wanna locker next door to, Verlander and his photo of Kate Bush, or Gibby and his big Desiderata poster?"


BIG chuckle at the proposed agent conversation!

Really like to believe conversations like that won't be happening when players look at the 2019 season, the talent on hand, Target Field, Rocco and Johnson and this FO going forward.
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#30 USAFChief

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 07:15 PM

I get this. Not an excuse here, but a possible explanation related to the FO's perception of timing, which we of course don't have to agree with (although it's nice when people grant an understanding of a different perspective). At least they were rather clear in saying earlier that they were trying to pry the window open whereas now they say they can feel a breeze. We all hope this leads to greater determination, right?

Okay, maybe this IS an excuse, Chief, but I can't help imagining a presentation by Greinke's agent: "Okay, which direction do you want me to go? The Astros, who are clear favorites to win the whole shebang this year, have room for at least two guys like you ad infinitum, and will host you in a no state tax state, or the Twins, who may have to sneak in the back door as a wild card, barely have room for one ace budget-wise, and will tax the darn heck out of you. Who do you wanna locker next door to, Verlander and his photo of Kate Bush, or Gibby and his big Desiderata poster?"

Agreed...That certainly is an excuse. ;)

But even if we grant that, reporting at the time indicates the Greinke deal was "not happening" for Houston either. But their GM wouldnt take no for an answer, and ended up getting it done.

In any case, Greinke is just one example.

And contrast that with the Twins apparent surprise to see Stroman traded this past July. Pretty passive, IYAM. And I didn't even like Stroman, but the Twins did. They just sat on their hands.

All specific examples aside, I hope they're more proactive, and more determined in the future.
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#31 Mike Sixel

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 08:50 PM

Fun fact: Houston has two prospects to which MLB Pipeline gives an overall value of 50 or more.

The Twins have 13 of these prospects today.


Of course, Houston just graduated future star Alvarez. But I don't get the point. Isn't it easier to draft if you aren't that good, so shouldn't the twins have more top prospects? Aren't they in a position to trade for prospects going into this last year, not trade from prospects? If they didn't have a lot more that would be bad. If they emulate Houston, they will trade at least eight of those players in the next two years.... So, about the same number....
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#32 birdwatcher

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Posted 18 October 2019 - 07:32 AM

 

Of course, Houston just graduated future star Alvarez. But I don't get the point. Isn't it easier to draft if you aren't that good, so shouldn't the twins have more top prospects? Aren't they in a position to trade for prospects going into this last year, not trade from prospects? If they didn't have a lot more that would be bad. If they emulate Houston, they will trade at least eight of those players in the next two years.... So, about the same number....

 

 

Correction: Yordan Alvarez was acquired via trade from the Dodgers for former 1st rounder Josh Friggin' Fields, an Astro's Kohl Stewart-like draft dud. He was subsequently released by the Dodgers, Brewers, and Rangers.

 

You need to have some historical context to understand why the Astros have only 15 prospects with a 45 FV and the Twins have 28 of them, but it starts with the unassailable fact that, as Houston was trying to add a "final piece" or two coming off of another 100 win season, the 78-win Twins were still scrambling to build up prospect capital AND MLB talent. Falvey was busy accumulating prospect talent, which we began to see (Smeltzer and Alcala for example). The Astros were ready to USE prospect capital. They smartly traded away good but not great surplus prospects like Alcala, Celestino, Bukauskas, and Beer. Oh, and Josh Friggin' Field.

 

The Twins have plenty of good prospects as a result of those favorable draft postions, Mike. I don't know what you'd expect! Royce Lewis, Kirilloff, Larnach...6 prospects among the Top 100? In fact, they've been exceptional at building prospect value. They have 17 starting pitching prospects that Fangraphs says are 40FV guys or better. The White Sox, with similar or better draft order? They have 7 of them.

 

The Twins don't have just a few more high-quality prospects than Houston. Again: Houston has 2 guys at 50FV, the Twins 13. Houston has 15 guys at 45 FV or better, the Twins 28.

 

So now do you get the point? They ARE emulating Houston, and may actually be BETTER at things in a couple of ways. They've simply been at different stages. Until this off-season.

 

We'll see, but I personally believe they have zero qualms about wise decisions to trade from their impressive pipeline. I hope they DO emulate Houston and retain Lewis, Kirilloff, Larnach, Graterol, and Duran, talent they NEED. Or to pull the trigger on the right "expensive" FA opportunity. Or to trade a surplus player from the 26-man. Because finally, they're in decent shape in all three ways.

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#33 Hosken Bombo Disco

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Posted 18 October 2019 - 08:01 AM

Lavine has mentioned in the past and eludes to it here. They were aware of Pressly’s capability but struggled with execution.
No way of knowing what that meant exactly but I have noticed a new pitching coach and manager since the Presley trade. Perhaps to improve execution?

The team’s execution, you say?

I’m in favor of that. :)


h/t, football coach John McKay
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#34 Platoon

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Posted 18 October 2019 - 08:18 PM

One by one... the old school operations are falling by the wayside.
But here’s the thing. It’ll be a short window for the Twins who were somewhat late to the party but not as late as others. We will enjoy the fruits of these efforts for a little while as the dinosaurs die off.
Eventually everybody will be in the same place in the future and a new thing will have to arrive to separate a brand new future new breed from the pack.
The Orioles new GM is from the Astros and they will follow the Astros path. The Giants have hired from the Dodgers.

Well once the last Trogosaurus has been turned into crude oil, everyone really won't be in the same place. The "haves" will be more likely to add depth and talent to their teams via free agency and expensive extensions. The "have nots" will not. While everyone may be in the same place in the future, they may not be able to remain there.
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