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Article: TwinsDaily Video: How Much Pitching Can The Twins Afford?

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#1 John Bonnes

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 07:00 PM

You can view the page at http://twinsdaily.co...he-Twins-Afford

#2 Jeremy Nygaard

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 07:32 PM

That was really cool.

#3 Kwak

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 07:57 PM

BB players are like other collectibles/investments--buy quality.

#4 Trevor0333

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 08:07 PM

I'd like to think they can atleast sign a guy like Colby Lewis & trade for a flier on Brett Anderson.

#5 Jim H

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 08:15 PM

What I got out of this summary is that of all the free agent pitchers signed last year Correia was among the top six. This despite the fact that at least a dozen of these guys got more money per year than he did. This tends to highlight the problem with free agents. Most really aren't very good, whether it is injuries, age or other reasons. But because everyone needs pitchers GM's are willing to gamble money and years even though good results aren't all that likely.

The best results for the money, were Colon and Liriano and even Liriano had a 2 year offer for $7 mil a year till he hurt himself over the winter. It almost looks like you have just as good a chance of getting a good pitcher(if you do your research and get lucky) of digging around in the bargain bin as spending $10 mil a year on multiple year contracts for "2nd tier" free agents.

#6 Seth Stohs

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 09:09 PM

What I got out of this summary is that of all the free agent pitchers signed last year Correia was among the top six. This despite the fact that at least a dozen of these guys got more money per year than he did. This tends to highlight the problem with free agents. Most really aren't very good, whether it is injuries, age or other reasons. But because everyone needs pitchers GM's are willing to gamble money and years even though good results aren't all that likely.

The best results for the money, were Colon and Liriano and even Liriano had a 2 year offer for $7 mil a year till he hurt himself over the winter. It almost looks like you have just as good a chance of getting a good pitcher(if you do your research and get lucky) of digging around in the bargain bin as spending $10 mil a year on multiple year contracts for "2nd tier" free agents.


I agree.. Free agency isn't about signing talent. It's about getting lucky and hoping the players don't age quickly.

#7 Nick Nelson

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 11:16 PM

The best results for the money, were Colon and Liriano and even Liriano had a 2 year offer for $7 mil a year till he hurt himself over the winter. It almost looks like you have just as good a chance of getting a good pitcher(if you do your research and get lucky) of digging around in the bargain bin as spending $10 mil a year on multiple year contracts for "2nd tier" free agents.


That's true to an extent, but the more expensive guys are more expensive for a reason. They are more highly sought. Players get paid based on production, and right now the Twins could stand to add some guys that have proven they can produce.

#8 Twins Daily Admin

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Posted 18 October 2013 - 12:47 AM

What I got out of this summary is that of all the free agent pitchers signed last year Correia was among the top six. This despite the fact that at least a dozen of these guys got more money per year than he did. This tends to highlight the problem with free agents. Most really aren't very good, whether it is injuries, age or other reasons. But because everyone needs pitchers GM's are willing to gamble money and years even though good results aren't all that likely.

The best results for the money, were Colon and Liriano and even Liriano had a 2 year offer for $7 mil a year till he hurt himself over the winter. It almost looks like you have just as good a chance of getting a good pitcher(if you do your research and get lucky) of digging around in the bargain bin as spending $10 mil a year on multiple year contracts for "2nd tier" free agents.


i'm pretty sure this is overstated a bit. Anyone care to do an analysis of the average ERA & IP for greinke vs 8-figure guys vs the rest?

#9 ChiTownTwinsFan

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Posted 18 October 2013 - 07:04 AM

lol ,,, Little Sisters of the Poor?

#10 Jim Crikket

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Posted 18 October 2013 - 07:30 AM

Clever video. I like it.

Understanding that it's an overgeneralization, it just seems to me that the FA pitching market has become populated by two groups: 1) the superstars getting perhaps their one career opportunity to really cash in by hitting the market, and 2) pitchers with enough flaws that their current team did not see them as worthy of being retained by offering a fair multi-year deal.

The group in between, reliable, productive starting pitchers, simply is not reaching the market because teams are locking those guys up with extensions as soon as they demonstrate their quality.

Maybe the Offseason GM Handbook will demonstrate that I'm wrong.

#11 nicksaviking

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Posted 18 October 2013 - 08:03 AM

Good stuff, but for once I'd prefer this team go after quality not quantity.

I'm curious though, by all accounts the Twins were below budget this past year, so where is the $30 million budget coming from? To get back to the expected Target Field payroll, they should have over $40 million to spend should they so choose. Not that they are likely to.

#12 Boom Boom

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Posted 18 October 2013 - 08:39 AM

Regardless of how much the Twins have to spend, there's a finite number of pitchers on the market. I suspect that the Twins will try to sign a 2nd tier pitcher and add a couple more lottery tickets.

#13 Siehbiscuit

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Posted 18 October 2013 - 08:43 AM

So considering that FA is a crapshoot, outside of the elite guys, should the Twins go after 3-5 guys in the bargain bin and see who turns out to be our Liriano or Feldman? Or should we go all in on a Tanaka, Garza or Santana?

#14 Joe A. Preusser

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Posted 18 October 2013 - 08:56 AM

So considering that FA is a crapshoot, outside of the elite guys, should the Twins go after 3-5 guys in the bargain bin and see who turns out to be our Liriano or Feldman? Or should we go all in on a Tanaka, Garza or Santana?


I can get on board with about anyone other than Garza.

#15 nicksaviking

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Posted 18 October 2013 - 09:04 AM

So considering that FA is a crapshoot, outside of the elite guys, should the Twins go after 3-5 guys in the bargain bin and see who turns out to be our Liriano or Feldman? Or should we go all in on a Tanaka, Garza or Santana?


The Twins have plenty of budget and plenty of rotation spots to fill, they can go do both.

#16 Shane Wahl

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Posted 18 October 2013 - 10:11 AM

That was cool. Nice presentation.

#17 Oldgoat_MN

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Posted 18 October 2013 - 10:24 AM

Tanaka and Kazmir.
Maybe Josh Johnson if the price isn't too steep, perhaps heavy on incentives for innings pitched.

That would eat up that $40 million pretty quick, but we'd have a chance to win some games next year if an offense shows up.

I'm on a whiskey diet. I've lost 3 days already.


#18 beckmt

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Posted 18 October 2013 - 11:50 AM

Would prefer Johnson and Lincecum(I know he will have a qualifying offer), but the Twins need quality(Tanaka would be fine also and one lottery pick)

#19 Sconnie

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Posted 18 October 2013 - 12:02 PM

Very cool presentation, thanks John.

Going after the bargain bin doesn't significantly improve the rotation over what the Twins had last season. I'm with Old Goat, 40 mil has the potential to buy a competetive ball club, but status quo buys the more of the same.

#20 Oxtung

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Posted 18 October 2013 - 12:09 PM

First off pretty cool video.

I think you've made an error though in your choice of words. You said "The Twins could have up to $25-$30 million dollars to spend...." That is just not true. They will have at a minimum that much. You also have to consider that they will be recieving another $25-$30 million in additional revenue via MLB. Then, as someone stated above they weren't at their limit last season either. Forbes estimated their 2012 revenue (2013 isn't out yet that I know of) at $214 million. That likely decreased a bit in 2013 but if you use the Twins 52% rule the payroll could have been as high as perhaps $100 million in 2013. When you add it all up I think it would be more accurate to say the Twins could have up to $70 million dollars. It obviously depends on where their revenue really stands at and how the Twins handle the new money being distributed this season, but when you're using the words "up to" you're talking about the most money a team can spend and any way you cut it that will be more than $25-$30 million.

There were eleven FA starting pitchers signed for the 2013 season that qualified for the ERA title and posted better ERA's than Correia. Five posted sub-3.00 ERA's and another three of those posted sub-3.50 ERA's. R.A. Dickey had an ERA almost identical to Correia's.

Failure certainly happened and when it did it came in 3 varieties. Just poor pitching, Dempster, Haren, Jackson, Blanton, Pelfrey and Saunders fall into this catagory; players with injuries, Baker, McCarthy, Marcum, Marquis; and fliers that didn't succeed like Erik Bedard, Derek Lowe, Roy Oswalt, Rich Harden, etc...

#21 Jim H

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Posted 19 October 2013 - 09:20 AM

That's true to an extent, but the more expensive guys are more expensive for a reason. They are more highly sought. Players get paid based on production, and right now the Twins could stand to add some guys that have proven they can produce.


Actually, I tend to agree with this statement. There are however, 2 problems associated with this. The first is that, there are only a few guys who have the kind of production that really justifies interest, and that really drives up the price. The 2nd is that the next tier really gets expensive as well and sometimes the production doesn't really match with the price.

Clearly, the Twins will likely end up spending in this area this coming off-season and while I won't complain if they do, it is very likely the Twins will end up with someone whose production will probably be no better than Correia was this year. A good potential example of this is Hughes from the Yankees. Even though he was really no better and perhaps worse than Correia was this year, he is going to command much more than Correia did. Hughes has a big fastball, some good stuff, is relatively young and has a bit of a track record of success. Still, except for one year, his record as a starter is that of a back of the rotation guy.


I really don't know don't know what he will get, perhaps 3 years at $12 mil per year, but it could be more than that. I would be surprised if it is less. The problem is while he has flashed the stuff of a top of rotation guy, the most likely outcome is Correia like production. Because, that is actually what he has done through most of his career. Again, I won't be upset if the Twins get him or someone like him, but expecting something really good out of someone who has seldom produced at that level, is setting yourself up for disappointment.

Edited by Jim H, 19 October 2013 - 12:04 PM.


#22 shimrod

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Posted 19 October 2013 - 01:23 PM

How much pitching can the Twins afford? Short answer is, much more than they're willing to pay for.

#23 Kwak

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Posted 19 October 2013 - 02:06 PM

Not bothering to buy pitching--repeat 2011,2012, and 2013--rinse, lather, and repeat. The stated figure: "up to ...", seems like there is basis for it. But as far as I'm concerned I fully expect a repeat of last off-season's "free-agent dance", with a resultant similarly sized payroll reduction. A few more wins result because there won't be another September implosion. "Progress" will be claimed, and statements like "we're turning the corner" due to another 4 to 6 wins.

#24 Major Leauge Ready

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Posted 19 October 2013 - 06:30 PM

2013 attendance was down by roughly 300,000. I don’t know the average cost of a ticket or the net effect on parking and concessions but I would guess we are talking a net decrease of roughly $12M. You would think sales of Twins merchandise also takes a hit when the team sucks so I am going to guess revenue dropped to $200-202M. I have never been sure if this number is before or after payroll taxes. I am assuming before.

That gives us 225-227 in revenue. 227 * 52% = 118 – 59 = $59M
The catch is, as I understand it, they base the payroll on previous year’s revenue. Therefore, the new TV revenue might not be considered in the budget until next year. Actually, it might be very wise to leave some room for spending in 2015 given we are hopeful several questions will be answered in 2014. Willingham’s contract will be off the books in 2015 but some players are going to get raises that might take-up most of that $7M. It would be nice to have $20M or so to spend in 2015 when it has become more clear which of our young players are for real.

I expect they will spend in the neighborhood of $35-40M.

Anyone care to guess what the following FAs will bring in terms of years/dollars.

Ervin Santana
Tim Lincecum
Ubaldo Jimenez
Phil Hughes
Scott Kazmir
Ricky Nolasco
Scott Feldman
Josh Johnson



I did not include Garza because he was trouble in the clubhouse when he was here and he has been trouble everywhere else he has been. I can’t image they would even entertain bringing him back.

Edited by Major Leauge Ready, 19 October 2013 - 10:48 PM.


#25 stringer bell

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Posted 19 October 2013 - 11:37 PM

I like Feldman, Johnson, Tanaka, and think bringing back Pelfrey wouldn't be a mistake either.

#26 freshinthehouse

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Posted 20 October 2013 - 05:30 AM

As others in this thread have said, for once let's go for quality over quantity.

I'd love to see the Twins make a significant offer to win the rights to negotiate with Tanaka. Since this could be upwards of of $40 (plus the 8-9 mill Tanaka will probably earn in the first year of his contract), this will be a pretty spendy proposition. If they don't sign any one else to anything more than a one year contract, the Twins should be set to have quite a bit of money left to spend next year as well. That's when I'd like to see them throw a hefty four year deal Homer Bailey's way. That would give the Twins to solid starters for the next several years. If any of Gibson/Meyer/May/Stewart/Berrios become decent, we could be looking at a pretty good rotation as we head into the Sano/Buxton era.

#27 amjgt

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Posted 20 October 2013 - 09:57 AM

If I told you that the Twins would get Tanaka (Let's say $50M posting and 6yr/70M contract), but not ANYONE else for the rotation, would you be happy with that offseason?

#28 Kwak

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Posted 20 October 2013 - 12:44 PM

$12MM seems high for a net reduction to the Twins. It's the cheap seats that don't get sold. These are the $13-$17 seats mostly. Include a bit more reduction for the $8 seats sold at "demand pricing" for walkups. Concessions--the Twins get a % of the gross as net revenue. $6MM reduction for that 300k attendance loss. The big dollar seats (between the bases from the suites down to the field) get sold.

#29 Major Leauge Ready

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Posted 20 October 2013 - 01:51 PM

$12MM seems high for a net reduction to the Twins. It's the cheap seats that don't get sold. These are the $13-$17 seats mostly. Include a bit more reduction for the $8 seats sold at "demand pricing" for walkups. Concessions--the Twins get a % of the gross as net revenue. $6MM reduction for that 300k attendance loss. The big dollar seats (between the bases from the suites down to the field) get sold.


A couple million one way or the other probably won't have any impact in terms of spending this year but you might be right about the $12M being high. I would guess the ratio of cheap vs expensive seats that don't get sold is fairly equal but I base that on nothing but speculation. It would be interesting to see how much merchandise sales fall when they stink. You would think that would take a pretty good hit.