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How to improve middle infield

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#1 greengoblinrulz

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Posted 07 November 2012 - 05:42 PM

I have been on record since Sept that I HATE our middle infield guys & if they start the 2013 season with someone out of the grouping of Florimon/Dozier/Carroll/Escobar as their starters, they will lose 90gms for the 3rd straight year & firings will be prevelant through the organization.
I also know that many people argue that MN should spend all their available funds on pitching.....I am not one of those as you can find affordable pitching in trades (which is what MN will do) & not spend in FA.

I have brought up Dan Uggla in a few different threads as his career worst 2012 season is better than any middle infielder in MN has had since the Chuck Knoblauch days. I would be all in on him even with his 3yr/39m remaining.

Another name that was mentioned to me is Rickie Weeks of MIL. He's due 21m over next 2 yr with a tm option in 15.
He also had a career worst yr in 12' but also would be the best 2B in 15yrs for this club with those numbers. He was also very career average in the 2nd half. His MLB worst UZR @ 2B worries me, but he was also positive in UZR the 3 previous yrs.
In Weeks last 5 injury free yrs....he 66+ BBs in 4/5 & 167XBH in his last 3yrs (IMO over 50 is bench mark).
He is a guy who you can buy low on, & get a huge return....and if he ONLY puts up last yrs offensive #s.....he's the best you've had in 15yrs at that position.

#2 SpiritofVodkaDave

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Posted 07 November 2012 - 05:48 PM

No on Uggla, 3/39 is way to steep a price to pay for a guy who is clearly aging and showing steady decline, his defense is only going to get worse as well.

I'd be more interested in Weeks, but not sure why the Brew Crew would sell so low on him. Plus I'd want them to pick up some of the cash.

I actually want them to Bring in Kelly Johnson as a buy low type guy 1 year, 4.5 mil should get it done.

#3 greengoblinrulz

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Posted 07 November 2012 - 07:02 PM

Uggla actually had his best defensive year this season, so it could be an abberation or is he improving over age in the field.
10m for an all star type 2B like Weeks is very much in budget IMO.
Ive never been a fan of Johnson, but he would be an improvement altho his defense wasnt any better than the first 2.
Whether its these guys or someone else, this team is below average offensively & needs to drastically improve the middle infield hitting.

#4 Bark's Lounge

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Posted 07 November 2012 - 07:16 PM

Two Words - Jason Bartlett

#5 snepp

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Posted 07 November 2012 - 08:43 PM

Not viewing utility players as viable starters in the middle infield would be a good place to start.

#6 minn55441

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Posted 07 November 2012 - 09:04 PM

Not viewing utility players as viable starters in the middle infield would be a good place to start.


Good point.

If we spend money on MI will that take away money that would have been spent on Pitching? Probably.

#7 Bark's Lounge

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Posted 07 November 2012 - 11:31 PM

Most have come to the conclusion that the Twins will not spend on a Middle Infielder. I agree and am on board with that. When there were trade rumors surrounding Span in 2011, the Nationals were the team we were informed wanted him. Steven Lombardozzi was mentioned in those trade scenarios.

I am not on board with trading Span for a package including Lombo Jr., but maybe trading Benson for him would not be such a travesty. Lombo had a good rookie season playing all over the diamond, hitting pretty well, and it seems like he can play a proficient 2B. He will not be a power hitter by no means, but when he settles in, it seems like he can be a .280 hitter with a little pop, OBP is in question a bit, but his minor league track record indicates he can take a walk sometimes.

Trading Benson for him would be somewhat risky - but the Twins have a plethora of outfielders and the Nats have their middle infield set for the foreseeable future. Both teams would seem to benefit from this kind of trade and Lombardozzi could play 2B for us and Dozier or one of the other filler players could man SS. Benson would be given a new lease on his career and be higher up in the Nat's OF Depth Chart.

#8 kab21

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Posted 07 November 2012 - 11:42 PM

I think there will be several decent options available this year for around 5-7M/yr and that shouldn't take much away from pitching imo.

Uggla is a potential choice if Atlanta wanted to dump him for next to nothing and the Twins were prepared to take payroll north of 100M next season. I would however prefer that the team look first for a more defensive minded MI'er since Uggla would make the Twins defense worse.

#9 greengoblinrulz

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 12:27 AM

I do like the Lombo idea----.298 career minor league average with a .780OPS with speed. I dont believe MN has any interest in Benson bein part of their future, so that wouldnt be a bad idea.
I wouldnt mind sniffing around their other 2 guys Desmond (all star who was rumoured in last yrs Span deal) or Espinosa.
Nats dont want Harper in CF, so how about something centered around Span/Benson/Hendriks for Lombo/Detwiller/minor leaguer

#10 old nurse

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 12:38 AM

The Twins would have to aquire a MI via trade. If they trade for a pitcher will they have any assets for MI?

#11 Top Gun

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 08:08 AM

The Twins just traded for Escobar and picked up field, how many more mi do you need?

#12 snepp

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 08:19 AM

The Twins just traded for Escobar and picked up field, how many more mi do you need?


Preferably two that aren't terrible.

#13 twinsnorth49

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 08:34 AM

Two words....Pitch ing......wait that's two syllables, same deal though.

MI can wait until the trade deadline next year, if necessary (likely).

#14 COtwin

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 08:50 AM

[FONT=Helvetica]Meet the twins newest starter. Apparently we actually traded a bucket of balls for him, but we hear he has a rubber arm.
[/FONT]http://www.baseballrampage.com/Baseball/Baseball-Accessories/1217/Easton-Deluxe-Batting-Tee.html[FONT=Helvetica]
Carroll just called and said he didn't think much of his stuff. Said he could hit him all day long.

[/FONT]

Edited by COtwin, 08 November 2012 - 08:52 AM.


#15 minn55441

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 08:50 AM

I wouldn't be surprised to see a MI as a "throw in" included in our major trade to acquire a starting pitcher. It doesn't even sound right typing that. Our one major trade for a starting pitcher. I feel the need to knock on wood. Maybe we have one trade this off season, maybe we have two trades for starting pitching this off season, but I have a feeling that we will see a MI come with in one of these trades.

It would be nice if that player could step in quickly at the major league level, but probably just another career utility player that will be given a chance to compete.

#16 sorney

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 08:56 AM

The Twins just traded for Escobar and picked up field, how many more mi do you need?


Preferably two that aren't terrible.


Hehehehe

#17 gmarais66

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 09:14 AM

I'm guessing the Twins aren't going to spend big money on MI help, but they could likely find some players that are better than the current cast of misfits. I recently saw that Eugenio Velez elected free agency. He played for Memphis last year and had a .280/.358/.449 line, with 11 HR, 58 RBI and 37 SB. Certainly looks better than what the Twins have. He has some major league experience. There has to be a few players like this that the Twins could take a chance on.

#18 Boom Boom

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 09:31 AM

Prediction - Gardy falls in love with Tommy Field.

#19 Winston Smith

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 10:13 AM

So trade Benson a guy that was bad at AAA got hurt and was later really bad in AA for a guy that had a solid rookie yr at "the major league level"?

I'm surprised the Nationals haven't been all over that one.

May all our prospects be All Stars and the beer be free.


#20 nicksaviking

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 10:15 AM

Uggla isn't as an extreme pull hitter as Willingham has transformed into, but his swing would probably work well in Target Field. Still, the Twins would probably then need to find a way to include Minor/Delgado/Teheran/Hanson/Beachey in the deal. If the Twins are going to be forking over $13M for a 2B, there isn't going to be much left to give to a quality starting pitcher in the free agent market or though a trade. The Twins would have to make up for it with one of the Braves cheap controlable pitchers.

#21 Curt

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 10:26 AM

http://hardballtalk....drubal-cabrera/

Cleveland is shopping Asdrubal Cabrera and St. Louis has "real" interest...

#22 Top Gun

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 11:09 AM

Asdrubal would be great! but you would have to sell the farm.

#23 Physics Guy

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 11:48 AM

I like the idea of going after Danny Espinosa. He strikes out a ton, but is much cheaper than Uggla. Span + ??? for Espinosa and Lannan. Lannan isn't anything special but was a 6th starter for Washington. He would have been our #2 last year. Espinosa can play SS also and Lannan would at least provide a #4 or 5 starter (maybe). What say you?

#24 nicksaviking

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 01:44 PM

They can keep Lannan and his Blackburnesque contract and peripherals. The poor WHIP, K/9 and BB/K actually have some speculating that they may in fact be the same guy.

#25 Physics Guy

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 02:56 PM

Yeah, I didn't realize Lannan was making 5M. Definitely not worth that pricetag.

#26 Bark's Lounge

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 05:58 PM

So trade Benson a guy that was bad at AAA got hurt and was later really bad in AA for a guy that had a solid rookie yr at "the major league level"?

I'm surprised the Nationals haven't been all over that one.


Geez, sorry to offend you. Just because Benson had a bad, abbreviated year due to injury doesn't mean he has lost all value. His upside is as a guy who can stick in CF, has a cannon for an arm, can run real well, and has + power potential - sure there are some holes in his game, but I feel assured that he has a higher upside than Lombardozzi Jr. I do not think the Nationals would be offended by that phone call.

#27 Kwak

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 06:40 PM

A 66-96 team doesn't get turned around in a year. Solve the pitching problem first. If Willingham is traded to solve the starting pitching shortage, it will soon become obvious that the lack of power hitting is the next big problem--not middle infielders. The threads on Twins minor league prospects mostly agree on the need for further development of the top prospects--but some of them wll be full-time starters in 2014. Just because Ryan talks of "competing" in 2013--realistically what else can he say?--we fans should not delude ourselves that a 25 win improvement is likely next season. Build the foundation, then add to it. The minor league system has to become a consistent provider of useful talent and that takes time and likely early selections in the draft--90 losses +--for at least one more year.

#28 greengoblinrulz

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 10:50 PM

Arizona went from 65-97 in 2010 to divison winner with a 94-68 record in 2011
OAK went from 74-88 in 2011 to 94-68 & division winner
Balt went from 69-93 in 2011 to 93-69 & wild card......NEVER happens

#29 YourHouseIsMyHouse

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 11:32 PM

Uggla and Youkilis should be the two the Twins target. Both are great power hitters. Since they are both right handed, Target Field may be just the place where each could rebound. Contract wise, it should be one or the other. Uggla has had two below average seasons in a row and Youk has had one. Otherwise, both have been excellent career players. This is a good example on how to buy low for a high reward, yet it's risky because of the money. I've been advocating Youkilis for a while; although, if the Braves want to salary dump Uggla onto the Twins for little added return as part of a package deal, I'd be for that.

#30 Top Gun

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 11:50 PM

According to Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com, the Athletics and Diamondbacks are "at least mildly intrigued" by Hiroyuki Nakajima.

The Yankees won negotiating rights for Nakajima last winter with a $2 million bid, but they ultimately were unable to sign him. The 30-year-old is going to try to come over to the states again this offseason. He's won two Gold Gloves while batting .312 with an .867 OPS during the past five years.