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Non Roster Taijuan Walker

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#1 Flipper1a

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 08:04 AM

From Lavelle:

 

Interest in Walker

The Twins are finalizing their list of nonroster invites to spring training. One pitcher they are interested in bringing in is a former highly touted righthander: Taijuan Walker.

Walker, 27, has thrown just 14 innings over the past two seasons because of Tommy John surgery in April 2018. He was picked 43rd overall by the Mariners in 2010, and touched 98 miles per hour before surgery.

The Twins view him as a bounce-back candidate who could help the rotation while Michael Pineda serves his suspension for taking a banned substance and Rich Hill completes his rehabilitation from elbow surgery. Walker would have to prove his health first, then work on his command and secondary pitches, issues he dealt with before he was injured.

Walker is 31-31 with a 3.95 ERA in 97 career games, 94 of them starts.

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#2 Flipper1a

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 08:05 AM

I would think he would get a better offer than a non roster but we will see.

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#3 Doctor Gast

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 09:15 AM

 

I would think he would get a better offer than a non roster but we will see.

So would I. Maybe they could work out an agreement to sign him after Hill goes on IL so that there`d be flexibility in the 40 man roster. Looks like they are in communication w/ him. As long as those who need work in spring training get it, the more the merrier 


#4 Shaitan

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 09:35 AM

If he's willing to sign a nonroster spot that's great, as they can stash him in AAA with an opt out date.

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#5 TFRazor

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 09:43 AM

This feels like a very Pineda-esque move


#6 Twodogs

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 09:54 AM

I really like the possibility of a Walker bonce back! I think anyway the Twins could get him would be good for the depth of the team.

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#7 twinkiesfan11

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 12:56 PM

Would be a nice capper to the offseason to add an upside play on a non guaranteed contract. It seems like a good opportunity for him to join an organization that has 1) a need, 2) is a winner and 3) has developed good reputation for pitcher development.

#8 twins_89

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 01:46 PM

The likelihood that the Twins trade for a starter before Spring training is looking pretty remote, so Walker is probably the best case scenario left. We definitely need another capable starter for the first quarter of the season, so Walker would have every opportunity to make the opening day roster. There isn't another playoff caliber team in baseball that has as easy a path to making the rotation.

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#9 Greglw3

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 02:14 PM

 

From Lavelle:

 

Interest in Walker

The Twins are finalizing their list of nonroster invites to spring training. One pitcher they are interested in bringing in is a former highly touted righthander: Taijuan Walker.

Walker, 27, has thrown just 14 innings over the past two seasons because of Tommy John surgery in April 2018. He was picked 43rd overall by the Mariners in 2010, and touched 98 miles per hour before surgery.

The Twins view him as a bounce-back candidate who could help the rotation while Michael Pineda serves his suspension for taking a banned substance and Rich Hill completes his rehabilitation from elbow surgery. Walker would have to prove his health first, then work on his command and secondary pitches, issues he dealt with before he was injured.

Walker is 31-31 with a 3.95 ERA in 97 career games, 94 of them starts.

I think it’s a great idea! He’s two years out from Tommy John now. If he passes a physical, I’d say sign him quick!  I’m really uncomfortable about starting the season with 2 unproven rookies and they would make a lot of starts. Depth in starting pitching is needed. Best case, he could fill the #4 sport, then Twins would only have to go with one rookie or even have some opener or bullpen games for the #5 spot til Rich Hill is ready. Maybe this just shows how avid a fan I am but this move would actually excite me!

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#10 SomeGuy

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 02:22 PM

 

The likelihood that the Twins trade for a starter before Spring training is looking pretty remote, so Walker is probably the best case scenario left. We definitely need another capable starter for the first quarter of the season, so Walker would have every opportunity to make the opening day roster. There isn't another playoff caliber team in baseball that has as easy a path to making the rotation.

The trouble with needing him most in the first quarter of the season is that he is likely to show some rust after missing the last 2 seasons. I wouldn't view the Twins as having an easy spot for him to claim especially in the 2nd half of the year. The worst thing for him personally would be to waste another year because he was passed up on the depth chart for a contending team that can't afford to have patience with any rust or an ineffective starter. If he isn't cutting it and we ask him to move to the pen or AAA it would be a blow to him next offseason too.

 

He seems like a great candidate for a rebuilding team. He wants to KNOW that he will have a spot for the full season to rebuild his value. I'm guessing a rebuilding team grabs him with the hopes of flipping him in July.

 

He isn't in the position to pick the team that gives him the best chance at the post season or world series right now.

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#11 twins_89

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 02:29 PM

 

The trouble with needing him most in the first quarter of the season is that he is likely to show some rust after missing the last 2 seasons. I wouldn't view the Twins as having an easy spot for him to claim especially in the 2nd half of the year. The worst thing for him personally would be to waste another year because he was passed up on the depth chart for a contending team that can't afford to have patience with any rust or an ineffective starter. If he isn't cutting it and we ask him to move to the pen or AAA it would be a blow to him next offseason too.

 

He seems like a great candidate for a rebuilding team. He wants to KNOW that he will have a spot for the full season to rebuild his value. I'm guessing a rebuilding team grabs him with the hopes of flipping him in July.

 

He isn't in the position to pick the team that gives him the best chance at the post season or world series right now.

 

I'd put the odds of Pineda, Bailey, and Hill all being healthy and effective in the second half as very low. If Walker demonstrates he can be productive, I have little doubt there will be a place for him in the rotation.

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#12 SomeGuy

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 03:13 PM

 

I'd put the odds of Pineda, Bailey, and Hill all being healthy and effective in the second half as very low. If Walker demonstrates he can be productive, I have little doubt there will be a place for him in the rotation.

But there are many other teams with much clearer paths to the rotation where he doesn't have 5 veterans and 2-4 other candidates to compete with. He shouldn't pick a destination where he is banking on injuries or a short suspension to open a spot for him. He needs to pitch as much as possible to reestablish himself and he will want a rotation spot that is all but guaranteed. The Twins can't offer that.

 

 


#13 Thegrin

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 03:15 PM

Walker might become an effective pitcher again, but I wouldn't look for him to do it before June, the same time that we get Pineda back.  Still, it would be a good signing.  :)


#14 Flipper1a

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 03:16 PM

I think it is the reverse (for pressure) he would be counted as a 4th or 5th starter and they can ease him in early in innings if needed also.There will be some experienced pitchers helping him out too (Hill, Pineda, Odorizzi, Bailey, and Berrios).Cleveland started with 7 guys who could start at the beginning of last year and Kluber and Carrasco ended up with injuries.....

 

We have Berrios, Bailey, and Odorizzi.....Maybes of Romero, Smeltzer, Dobnak, and Thorpe.Graterol will be on an innings limit.Plenty of innings for him.Hill is June; Pineda May.9 rotation starts until Pineda.Maybe give him (Walker) a little break at that point (DL/Sore Arm for 15 days)?


#15 bunsen82

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 03:31 PM

I tried to post this earlier.The Twins would obviously be the best choice if all he has are non roster offers, however you would have to think he can get a deal even for 2-3 million from a cheap organization looking for a bargain.Even Martin Perez was able to get that deal out of us last year, and then have a 6 million deal this year.Makes you question if his arm is cooked. 

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#16 twins_89

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 05:05 PM

 

I tried to post this earlier.The Twins would obviously be the best choice if all he has are non roster offers, however you would have to think he can get a deal even for 2-3 million from a cheap organization looking for a bargain.Even Martin Perez was able to get that deal out of us last year, and then have a 6 million deal this year.Makes you question if his arm is cooked. 

 

That's had me somewhat puzzled as well. He's a guy who has demonstrated he can succeed and at 27 there's no age issue to worry about. The fact that he hasn't gotten even a minimal major league deal is concerning. I'd suspect if teams thought there was even a modest chance he could return to his previous level of performance he would have multiple offers for a few million plus heavy incentives.


#17 ashbury

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 05:45 PM

It's not a question only of guaranteed MLB contract (taking a 40-man spot) versus minor league contract. Also pertinent to a minor league invite will be the opt-out date he is granted. If one team will allow him to depart if he's not added to the 40-man before the last week of Spring Training, versus Opening Day, versus a week into the season, versus no opt-out at all, the player will take what's most favorable. And a team with championship aspirations will be averse to offering the most generous opt-out, because they may view it as about the same as not inviting the player at all, if they don't think they will be able to add him.

 

Also, the player will likely weigh the amount of competition for the final roster spot of each team.

 

All in all, I'll be surprised if the Twins are able to make an attractive offer to one of the more desirable non-roster types still out there.

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A mistake made more than once starts to look like a decision.


#18 howieramone2

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 06:52 PM

Our desperation ended when we quickly signed Odorizzi and Pineda. No doubt we will sign a #3 before we deal with the Yankees.

#19 Sconnie

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 07:08 PM

I'd put the odds of Pineda, Bailey, and Hill all being healthy and effective in the second half as very low. If Walker demonstrates he can be productive, I have little doubt there will be a place for him in the rotation.

isn’t that more reason to trade for a front to mid rotation starter you can count on? How many 40 man spots are you going to throw at starting pitcher?

#20 twins_89

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 09:39 PM

 

isn’t that more reason to trade for a front to mid rotation starter you can count on? How many 40 man spots are you going to throw at starting pitcher?

 

That would be by far the preferred path, it just looks fairly unlikely to happen at this point in the off-season. I would guess there is a high probability that the Twins will go hard after available starters at the trade deadline.

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