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Article: 2013 Twins Postmortem: What Went Wrong

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#1 Twins Fan From Afar

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 08:02 AM

You can view the page at http://twinsdaily.co...13-A-Postmortem
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#2 Oldgoat_MN

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 08:16 AM

Mutter, mutter, mutter.

Between Colabello & Parmelee, two guys who raked in AAA, you'd think we'd get a guy who could hit in MLB. Really need one, or both, of those guys to be a big league hitter.

It seems that in the decade up to 2010 the Twins could always bring in some AAA guy that was little known and he would surprise everyone with a great showing. Happened again and again.

Our 'rich farm system' in 2013 had its treasures buried too deep for this year. Rochester, for the most part, was not very helpful.

Edited by Oldgoat_MN, 18 September 2013 - 08:18 AM.


#3 DJL44

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 08:17 AM

I think Arcia forced his way to the big leagues. He raked in AAA which kept giving him chances to show it in the majors. He's going to be good.

You really didn't need hindsight to determine #1 and #3. Going with a rookie who has never been above AAA was a big risk and there was no backup plan despite several CF available cheaply (ex. Nyjer Morgan is in Japan). #3 was obvious to anyone looking at the opening day roster. So many pitchers were coming off of surgery. I didn't expect Worley to flame out but some pitcher always does and they should have anticipated that with all the medical issues of this pitching staff.

#4 diehardtwinsfan

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 09:38 AM

Yeah, my only quibble was number 7. Arcia was a top prospect and forced his way up. He struggled a bit, but sadly is still one of the better hitters on this team going by the numbers at least. I think he will be fine next season. He has adjusted well at every stop.

#5 Twins Fan From Afar

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 09:43 AM

Yeah, my only quibble was number 7. Arcia was a top prospect and forced his way up. He struggled a bit, but sadly is still one of the better hitters on this team going by the numbers at least. I think he will be fine next season. He has adjusted well at every stop.


Yea, good point. I guess I discounted him because he played like 13 games this spring for Rochester before getting the call, so his promotion feels old to me.

For the record, I also think he will be great. He's very young!
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#6 zenser

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 10:35 AM

Here is an even harder question to answer. What went right for the Twins this season?
1) Brian Dozier's emergence
2) solid bullpen pitching
3) Minor League success
4) Progression of Sano, Buxton, Rosario, Pinto to name a few.

#7 howieramone1406390264

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 10:37 AM

Good job on the article! I wasn't expecting much this year and wasn't disappointed. I look at it a little differently.

2013 Actual Hicks, Pressly, Arcia, Gibson, Thielbar, Presly, Pinto

2014 Projected Sano, Buxton, Rosario, Meyer, May

Some played their way into our future plans and probably an equal number played themselves out of consideration. I would also add Dozier someplace. The future is much clearer than it was.

#8 ThePuck

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 10:46 AM

IMO, the season was toast as soon as the rotation was set.
Just remember: You put the lime IN the coconut. Only THEN, can you drink it all up.

#9 adjacent

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 11:12 AM

Boy, Gardy has put on a lot of weight. I guess #1, #3 and, in some way, #7 were predictable. There is a lot of talent in the minors, but it was not in AAA at the beginning of the year. Arcia being the exception. I hope they don't give up on Hicks, he always was slow to adjust to changes in level, but ended up playing well in the end.

#10 ashburyjohn

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 11:57 AM

2013 was supposed to be a season of figuring out what we've got. I hope that the front office now can be decisive in the off-season, perhaps letting the trade market confirm what they think about their players (or conversely get more in return than they expect, for the guys they want to part ways with), and not let 40-man roster congestion ever be an excuse for personnel decisions going forward.

#11 howieramone1406390264

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 12:16 PM

2013 was supposed to be a season of figuring out what we've got. I hope that the front office now can be decisive in the off-season, perhaps letting the trade market confirm what they think about their players (or conversely get more in return than they expect, for the guys they want to part ways with), and not let 40-man roster congestion ever be an excuse for personnel decisions going forward.


I agree this winter is the time to be decisive. I think Ryan is going to pull a rabbit out of his hat. I always felt congestion on the 40-man roster was smoke and mirrors. I'd have a difficult time coming up with more than 26-27 players to keep as we stand, and even being overly protective with the Rule 5 players, I believe we have all kinds of room.

#12 Alex

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 12:17 PM

Good job on the article! I wasn't expecting much this year and wasn't disappointed. I look at it a little differently.

2013 Actual Hicks, Pressly, Arcia, Gibson, Thielbar, Presly, Pinto

2014 Projected Sano, Buxton, Rosario, Meyer, May

Some played their way into our future plans and probably an equal number played themselves out of consideration. I would also add Dozier someplace. The future is much clearer than it was.


Could you explain these lists? Is it that the players on the 2013 list look to be important parts of the team in the future?

#13 Alex

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 12:18 PM

2013 was supposed to be a season of figuring out what we've got. I hope that the front office now can be decisive in the off-season, perhaps letting the trade market confirm what they think about their players (or conversely get more in return than they expect, for the guys they want to part ways with), and not let 40-man roster congestion ever be an excuse for personnel decisions going forward.


I can live with that explanation (even if I think the FO saw it differently), and I hope you're right about the offseason.

#14 diehardtwinsfan

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 02:19 PM

What went wrong in 2013?

I think they were banking on 150 rainouts.

#15 Major Leauge Ready

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 02:43 PM

1A and 1B would be the dismal failure of Worley and Diamond. I was always a bit skeptical on Diamond but if those two produced near expectations we would have had a chance.

I say a chance because the middle of the order with the exception of Mauer also failed. Willingham went from an OPS of .890 to .730. Morneau was finally healthy and was still mediocre at best. Doumit went from an OPS of .780 to .700. Plouffe and Parelee simply did not step up.

I guess who you blame depends on perspective. Should the Twins have acquired one of the top FA position players? (Hamilton/Upton/Bourne/Swisher) For $36M/yr the Indians got statistically the worst offensive CF in baseball and a 1st baseman that ranks 18th. The other two big FA position players from last year were Hamilton and Upton. Hamilton for 5/125M produced an OPS of 733. BJ Upton 5/75M has an OPS of 572. I am very glad we don’t have any of these contracts on the books.

I did not expect greatness from Worley / Diamond / Deduno / Correia but they should have been decent. I blame the FO for Pelfrey. We paid him to rehab at the ML level. Short of Sanchez or resigned with his old team, who should have they went and got. It’s not like anyone saw Colon or Feldman emerging. My first preference would have been Lohse. Unfortunately, that relationship was strained. Dempster would have been my next choice followed by Blanton. Dempster has been mediocre with an ERA of 4.64 and Blanton has been awful.

Moving Span and Revere for pitching was smart. Giving Hicks a chance was not a terrible idea for a rebuilding team. Mastroianni was a decent fall-back position and of course he was hurt before the season started.

So, I am going to take a very different tact than normally followed here on TD. I am going to blame the players that did not get it done. Short of the Pelfrey decision, I thought the FO made good decisions and the minor league system is in the best shape it has ever been. I am still concerned about scouting and development of Pitchers. Two years ago I would have been firing some scouts and offering a couple scouts from the As and Rays a big raise.
Today, I might forgo the firings but I would still be recruiting some scouting talent.

#16 TheLeviathan

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 06:10 PM

Virtually everything went wrong. We got clarity, but not any of the kind we could have hoped for.

#17 jokin

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 06:28 PM

I agree this winter is the time to be decisive. I think Ryan is going to pull a rabbit out of his hat. I always felt congestion on the 40-man roster was smoke and mirrors. I'd have a difficult time coming up with more than 26-27 players to keep as we stand, and even being overly protective with the Rule 5 players, I believe we have all kinds of room.


I agree with everything stated, particularly the glut of AAAA players. But signing and retaining a glut of those types of place-holding players at AAA and AA with the promise that their continued mediocrity will give them a shot at a cup of coffee on the Twins active 25-man roster has been Ryan's demonstrated area of expertise, now, hasn't it?

My one exception to your hypothoses is that I harbor my extreme doubts about Ryan's alleged and suddenly re-discovered "magicianship".. Sadly, you're evidently willing to admit that the FO has been lying in wait all this time and now Ryan is somehow going to do a magic trick, and in one "decisive" fell swoop, make the miserable memories of the last 3 seasons all go away. Let's check back on that notion next February.

#18 lyndon

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 08:52 PM

I don't really think anything went wrong. The players we have are just not that good (with a few exceptions). Anything that went wrong was well before the season started. Expecting my 03 Chevy Impala to win the Indy 500 is just unrealistic. In other news bring on Sano, Buxton, Rosario, Meyer,etc. Can hardly wait for 2014! Even though we'll probably still suck, it should be fun to watch.

#19 IdahoPilgrim

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 08:56 PM

So, I am going to take a very different tact than normally followed here on TD. I am going to blame the players that did not get it done.


You radical.;)

I would say that a case could be made (and it will no doubt be argued more strenuously by others than I have an interest in doing) that the players played up to what they were capable of, so if the results are still poor it rests on the FO to get better players.

#20 Rick Niedermann

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 10:41 PM

Pitch to contact starting pitchers whose WHIP were unsightly and who couldn't strike anyone out. Failure to contact Hitters. . . . So many called 3rd strikes looking. Are they that bad? Hasn't Bruno preached protecting the plate with two strikes? So many disappointments in Hicks (god awful at the plate), Plouffe-who at one point I would of DFA, Parmelee and Colabello have proven to be AAAA guys even when platooned. Arcia's all or nothing approach. Really just so many disappointments, injuries and untalented players to list only 7.

#21 Kwak

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 11:12 PM

I never saw any fire in the team (it's even worse now!) that suggested that they believed this would be a winning season. That must change! I repeat--there is way too much emphasis on pitch-count and walks. The hitters need to get more aggressive on the first pitch and not permit the opposing P an easy strike one. These young guys also have to dial-it-down with two strikes and focus on making solid contact rather than swinging for the fences. Twins pitchers need to use their off-speed pitches more frequently.

#22 Shane Wahl

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Posted 19 September 2013 - 12:05 AM

Colabello, Parmelee, and Plouffe make sense as platoon players going forward. I still think that Colabello's power numbers are worth another look.

We are such a damn impatient bunch, aren't we? Smart phones and whatnot ruin our minds. What to expect from ROOKIES like Hicks, Colabello, Arcia, and Gibson? Dominance? What?

Everyone needs to calm down. Let the youth play and deal with it. Since Gardy doesn't like it. Send him away. Anderson too. These are *obvious* decisions to make.

#23 Twins Fan From Afar

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Posted 19 September 2013 - 06:41 AM

Colabello, Parmelee, and Plouffe make sense as platoon players going forward. I still think that Colabello's power numbers are worth another look.

We are such a damn impatient bunch, aren't we? Smart phones and whatnot ruin our minds. What to expect from ROOKIES like Hicks, Colabello, Arcia, and Gibson? Dominance? What?

Everyone needs to calm down. Let the youth play and deal with it. Since Gardy doesn't like it. Send him away. Anderson too. These are *obvious* decisions to make.


Your point is well taken. My expectation -- "hope" is probably a better word -- is that one or more of the guys billed as top prospects (Arcia, Gibson, Hicks) would have been able to last on the major league roster of one of the very worst teams in baseball without playing themselves back to AAA. Yes, I know this is common (happened to Hunter, Span, many more), but quite simply it would have been nice to see more of the big names step up this season when the Twins desperately needed it.
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#24 mike wants wins

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Posted 19 September 2013 - 07:05 AM

Well, Hicks was historically bad, and not great on defense. Would it be unreasonable for us not to expect one of the worst hitters ever? Gibson? I think it is reasonable to expect him not to post an ERA that gets him sent to AAA again, given his age and pedigree.
Lighten up Francis....

#25 lyndon

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Posted 19 September 2013 - 11:40 AM

Well last year Dozier was historically bad too. And now look. I don't think it's that big a deal that no one stuck very well. I think it was more just coincidence that these guys are all at a similar stage of development(we didn't have many good AAA prospects this year). Now if the same thing happens next year I'd be worried, because that excuse won't fly for a number of them. Arcia, Hicks, Gibson etc. better show some improvement. I'm really looking forward to seeing Arcia hit the ball to the upper deck.

#26 Shane Wahl

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Posted 19 September 2013 - 11:43 AM

Your point is well taken. My expectation -- "hope" is probably a better word -- is that one or more of the guys billed as top prospects (Arcia, Gibson, Hicks) would have been able to last on the major league roster of one of the very worst teams in baseball without playing themselves back to AAA. Yes, I know this is common (happened to Hunter, Span, many more), but quite simply it would have been nice to see more of the big names step up this season when the Twins desperately needed it.


I was being provocative in order to get a good response like this from you (and you in particular!).

I understand completely. I also think that there is something amiss with Gardenhire and co. with regard to dealing with youth. Gardy seems to be weird about certain people and who knows what goes on behind the scenes with regard to that.

That said, I like the homer power that even Hicks displayed through all the badness. Arcia, Colabello, and even Herrmann did that too. That's something to look at aside from overall performance.

#27 Shane Wahl

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Posted 19 September 2013 - 11:44 AM

Well, Hicks was historically bad, and not great on defense. Would it be unreasonable for us not to expect one of the worst hitters ever? Gibson? I think it is reasonable to expect him not to post an ERA that gets him sent to AAA again, given his age and pedigree.


Leave April out of the picture and doesn't the picture change with regard to Hicks? If that were his full season, wouldn't you not mind it so much as a rookie skipping a level?

#28 Shane Wahl

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Posted 19 September 2013 - 11:46 AM

Finally, I have said this before: there are two prospects in this organization who I think can straight up skip AAA if needed. Those two are Buxton and Sano. Other than that there is value in seeing AAA pitching since it is going to be different than AA pitching.

It's like in The Sopranos: breaking balls once in awhile is a necessary thing. Seeing more breaking balls in AAA is a necessary thing . . .

#29 Shane Wahl

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Posted 19 September 2013 - 11:49 AM

Your point is well taken. My expectation -- "hope" is probably a better word -- is that one or more of the guys billed as top prospects (Arcia, Gibson, Hicks) would have been able to last on the major league roster of one of the very worst teams in baseball without playing themselves back to AAA. Yes, I know this is common (happened to Hunter, Span, many more), but quite simply it would have been nice to see more of the big names step up this season when the Twins desperately needed it.


Also, in the Arcia thread I just asked a question about his OF defense in the minors. Do you have any insight on that? The question is about whether or not the indecisiveness and clumsiness (the Delmon factor) was common in the minors or if this MLB Arcia defense is different than his previous time out there. I like to know from people who have seen him . . .

#30 terencemann

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 10:22 AM

Good job on the article! I wasn't expecting much this year and wasn't disappointed. I look at it a little differently.

2013 Actual Hicks, Pressly, Arcia, Gibson, Thielbar, Presly, Pinto

2014 Projected Sano, Buxton, Rosario, Meyer, May

Some played their way into our future plans and probably an equal number played themselves out of consideration. I would also add Dozier someplace. The future is much clearer than it was.


I would be a little surprised to see Rosario and Buxton on the 2014 Twins. Rosario looks like he needs at least another full season in the minors and they probably won't rush Buxton.