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Article: Should the Twins be interested in AJ Pierzynski?

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#1 Seth Stohs

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Posted 02 December 2013 - 10:07 PM

You can view the page at http://twinsdaily.co...n-AJ-Pierzynski

#2 Madre Dos

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Posted 02 December 2013 - 10:19 PM

I don't think we need to bring AJ in. I say give it to Josmil... but I wouldn't be a little bit prejudice, would I?

#3 Lonestar

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Posted 02 December 2013 - 10:31 PM

I like the idea of Ryan Hanigan. His BABIP was terrible in 2013 but I think he would match AJ's offense next year when adjusted. He gets on base and plays much better defense. He would cost less in terms of money (but that would only save the Pohlad's money). He would be a better mentor for Pinto.

So what would it take to trade? Would Ryan Pressley and/or Vance Worley get the deal done?

#4 Shane Wahl

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Posted 02 December 2013 - 10:39 PM

I was just warming up to A.J. again, Seth, and you successfully ruined it. I actually thank you for that.

#5 beckmt

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Posted 02 December 2013 - 11:06 PM

JP Arencibia was (according to mlbtraderumors) not tendered. I think he might be a better option and cheap. If he does not work out, not much of a loss.

#6 DocBauer

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Posted 02 December 2013 - 11:45 PM

Seth, I love you man and agree with almost everything you say/write. Great minds? Lol

And I can't dismiss your arguments presented here. I too have been a bit torn about our C situation for next season. But I can debate your arguments, I believe.

First, without a crystal ball, I believe most of us are in agreement the Twins need to make some move to shore up the C position. But I don't believe that is an inditement as to Pintos talent or potential. Just a very real observation he isn't the second coming of Mauer, and has limited time at AAA or the MLB level.

And I don't believe signing Salt is a negative either. How can having an experienced and solid offensive C and another even younger and talented C working with him be a bad thing? As I have stated before, depth of talent is a good thing!

But as you yourself pointed out, AJ has proven to be durable and generally very productive. While his HR totals might slide playing half his games in TF, he would still be a vast improvement over most C's, would provide a nice compliment to Pinto, and would provide some real experience for Pinto as well as the staff.

And while I love the "Twins Way" of doing things, we've lost some of that. And I think we've lost a little spark and fire as well. I think AJ would provide at leas a little of all the things I've commented on here.

Now, in an ideal world, Molina would find the fountain of youth for a year or two and be my very first choice, I have to believe that short of signing Salt, AJ would be a great second choice, pending financial details.

#7 Sleestax

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 12:44 AM

I'm with the "let's not sign AJ" crew on this. I actually like the guy...a winner..and I like that he bugs people too. I may agree with the guy who mentioned Arencibia..at least for a year. He is in his prime and hits Homers. His average stinks to holy hell but that is something that generally improves at his age. I dont know...but I am not comfy at all with a Pinto/Hermanson depth at Catcher! Oh alas! I just checked and found both Pinto and Arencibia are right handers!! Ten to One we draft that Catcher kid out of H.S. in the first round!

#8 Don't Feed the Greed Guy

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 12:54 AM

Should the Twins be interested in AJ? In a word, no.

Pierzynski gets props for handling pitchers, but so many of his 2013 numbers make AJ seem like a rich man's Ryan Doumit. Is it worth anywhere near the $7.5 million he received last year to repeat the following numbers?

OBP: Doumit, .314; AJ, .297
HR: Doumit, 14 (in 485 at bats, 6 at Target Field) AJ, 17 (in 529 at bats, 10 at Arlington)
RAA: Doumit, -13; AJ, -11.4
WAR: Doumit, 0.6; AJ, 1.6
%CS: Doumit, 20%; AJ, 33%

Sign AJ? I just don't see the upside. I'd prefer to see Terry Steinbach coach Josmil Pinto and company into a better future for Twins backstops.

#9 Brandon

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 12:55 AM

AJ is a perfectly good sign for the team. we can sign him for 1 or 2 years as he can transition to the backup Catcher the 2nd year if his offense falls too much. Yes there are other options so signing one with offensive potential is fine too. So is trading for one. AJ is 2nd on my list behind Salty. So if the Twins are going to go the free agent route you cant go wrong with the devil you had. The contract will be short enough not to be too much of an albatross either.

#10 TL

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 05:07 AM

I would make a push for Salty. Ideally he is a 1/2 year to 1 1/2 year stop gap to Pinto, similar to AJ. But the difference is that when Pinto is ready to take over full time Salty will likely have good trade value and, if pinto isn't ready, we still have Salty. I'd like to see the Twins spend to their stated budget each year even if players aren't in their long term plans because guys like Salty can be flipped for prospects as opposed to pocketing that extra money (unless, of course, they rollover that cash into the next year to sign a top tier free agent, but that doesn't seem likely).

#11 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 07:41 AM

But as you yourself pointed out, AJ has proven to be durable and generally very productive. While his HR totals might slide playing half his games in TF, he would still be a vast improvement over most C's, would provide a nice compliment to Pinto, and would provide some real experience for Pinto as well as the staff.


Actually, he probably wouldn't be better than your average catcher in Target Field.

1. He's 37 years old and in a decline phase.

2. His OPS+ in Texas was just 94.

3. His OBP was just .297, which makes that OPS+ look even worse.

4. Target Field crushes players with his profile, especially ones on the decline. Look at this spray chart.

aj-pierzynski-spray-chart.jpg

Chances are we'd be looking at a guy who is on the decline, well past the age of efficacy for most catchers, coming off a 94 OPS+ season with an OBP under .300, and moving into a park that kills players with his profile.

Oh, and he's pretty lousy defensively as well.

The more I look into it, the more I'd take just about anybody over AJ Pierzysnki.

#12 Jim Crikket

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 07:59 AM

Appears we can now close this thread out. AJ to the Red Sox.

Saltalamacchia up next?
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#13 BigTrane

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 08:09 AM

Ok, I'll take the bait. I'm new around here but have been vocal about AJ, so I'll step up to the plate. Have to take Seth at his word that he doesn't have a dislike for AJ on a personality basis. The "Rock 'Em, Sock 'Em AJ" photo is purely coincidence...?

Sure, AJ is 37, but as you yourself point out, he's durable. Always has been. I think we're all excited about Young Pinto, and love his pop. How do we feel about bringing back 'Pops', right? Yes, AJ is the Anti-Stargell, too. He is the Devil we know.

As for AJ's OBP, in his 16 seasons, he's been .300+ for all of them- except '13, when he barely missed.
Salty? In the last 5 seasons, he's been .300+ twice, with his best @ .360 in '10. Two out of five ain't bad, I suppose.

What I don't get is that if Pinto is the guy to groom (hence the need for the 'Vet Presence' in the first place), then why go with Salty for 3 or 4? AJ for 2 makes more sense.

As for the market for catchers, I'd call it thin, and would love to see a list of all those available Cs- then we can compare. Arenciba was non-tendered, and you're right- he was absolutely awful in '13. I'm struggling to see his upside, other than the fact that he's young.

But then, so is Pinto...

Direct answer to the last question: in a thin catcher market, *not* pursuing 1 of the 2 quality FAs (yep, Salty's the other) would be self-defeating by definition. All your eggs in one basket. How does that make sense?

Edited by BigTrane, 03 December 2013 - 08:15 AM.


#14 Thrylos

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 08:20 AM

I love that picture, btw ;)

My huge thanks to Boston.

#15 Marta Shearing

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 08:22 AM

I dont want salty. Waste of money. Pinto's the man. Im fine with Pinto for 122 games, Hermann/Doumit can split the other 40.

#16 Seth Stohs

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 08:39 AM

Have to take Seth at his word that he doesn't have a dislike for AJ on a personality basis. The "Rock 'Em, Sock 'Em AJ" photo is purely coincidence...?


I just think the photo is funny! I am not a fan of Pierzynski, admittedly, but I have a ton of respect for him. For me, it's the age (which leads to durability questions) which makes him OK as a backup, but he's not going to get backup money. he's not very good offensively or defensively at this point either.

What I don't get is that if Pinto is the guy to groom (hence the need for the 'Vet Presence' in the first place), then why go with Salty for 3 or 4? AJ for 2 makes more sense.


Completely agree... and tha'ts why I haven't been a big proponent of bringing him in either. He's younger, but more years and more expensive, so I'm not sure that I think that's a great expenditure. I don't think Arencibia is very good either, but he makes more sense as a role player.

#17 diehardtwinsfan

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 08:50 AM

I'd probably go after Arancebia if he was in fact non-tendered as someone said. Perhaps I just remember him being a 1 man wrecking crew against the Twins a few years back on opening night, but he is still young an if I remember correctly was a decent though of prospect.... It strikes me a as a "worst case decent backup" option and a best case "suddenly you have a guy you can trade".

#18 BigTrane

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 08:54 AM

Well, AJ just signed with Boston, so thread: dead.
Feel free to pile on about Suzuki.

#19 cmathewson

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 09:02 AM

Actually, he probably wouldn't be better than your average catcher in Target Field.

1. He's 37 years old and in a decline phase.

2. His OPS+ in Texas was just 94.

3. His OBP was just .297, which makes that OPS+ look even worse.

4. Target Field crushes players with his profile, especially ones on the decline. Look at this spray chart.

[ATTACH=CONFIG]6109[/ATTACH]

Chances are we'd be looking at a guy who is on the decline, well past the age of efficacy for most catchers, coming off a 94 OPS+ season with an OBP under .300, and moving into a park that kills players with his profile.

Oh, and he's pretty lousy defensively as well.

The more I look into it, the more I'd take just about anybody over AJ Pierzysnki.


Considering all this, what was Boston thinking?
"If you'da been thinkin' you wouldn't 'a thought that.."

#20 DJL44

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 09:20 AM

Pierzynski's bat plays better at Fenway than in MN. I love that the Red Sox are bowing out on Saltalamacchia. If the Twins don't get Saltalamacchia then I like John Buck.

#21 Cris E

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 09:27 AM

I wasn't high on AJ because I don't think he's ready to sit down and watch a younger player take his innings, and particularly one who is going to have growing pains and go through stretches where AJ is clearly the better player. Once AJ accepts that he's not a starter anymore I think he'd be a decent guy to have in the mentor role and resident redass, but 2014 is not the year and parking him on the bench could lead to corrosion and failure.

#22 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 09:34 AM

Considering all this, what was Boston thinking?


I have no idea.

Given that AJ looks to be an extreme pull hitter when he's hitting for power, the BoSox better hope he spends the season bouncing balls on or around Pesky Pole.

#23 Siehbiscuit

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 10:14 AM

Wasn't Herrmann on most everyone's top 10 Twins prospects list at this time last year? Why not just go with our two young guys, dump Doumit and let Mauer and Steinbach sit in on pitcher and catcher's meetings. Herrmann got an extended taste last year and they provide a natural LH/RH balance. Growing pains are natural, but also provides opportunities to get better. The 2014 Twins aren't going to win the division, let's invest in the future and let these two guys compete everyday and work in tandem. Save your money and get a quality bat in the OF or 3B or even just for someone to DH. No use in blocking these two guys development.

#24 gil4

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 02:35 PM

Wasn't Herrmann on most everyone's top 10 Twins prospects list at this time last year?



http://www.twinsdail...ing-Compilation

Highest was #14 (Seth)
BA: Not in top 10
BP: Not in top 10
Sickels: not in top 25
Cody Christie: 19



Not in the compilation:
Gleeman had him #20
SB Nation voting: 21

#25 Dave T

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 04:10 PM

Pinto has all the offensive potential in the world, but he's a terrible catcher. He needs to get to league average defensively before he's promoted from the minors. No scholarships!

I love AJ's attitude, and I wish the Twins had more players that really hated to lose. However, the Twins pitching staff needs all the help it can get, and a + catcher defensively is a minimum requirement. Give me someone who knows how to call a game, how to frame a pitch, how to throw a fast runner out, how to slow things down before they get out of hand. If he can hit better than Punto, I'm in.

#26 OldManWinter

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 05:58 PM

What ever happened to Butera? :~). Call a game ... blah, blah, blah

#27 stringer bell

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 06:15 PM

mlbtraderumors.com now has Saltalamacchia off the board--to the Marlins for 3/21M.

#28 BigTrane

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 09:16 PM

mlbtraderumors.com now has Saltalamacchia off the board--to the Marlins for 3/21M.


Yep, and the AJ/BoSox deal was for 1 year, not 2. Oh, well.

Where's that list, Seth? Who should we be going for now?
Feel free to pile on about Suzuki.

#29 brunofan

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Posted 05 December 2013 - 10:35 PM

Call up Brian Harper, avg defense but never got credit for being a damn good hitter!

#30 Dilligaf69

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Posted 05 December 2013 - 10:47 PM

Wasn't Herrmann on most everyone's top 10 Twins prospects list at this time last year? Why not just go with our two young guys, dump Doumit and let Mauer and Steinbach sit in on pitcher and catcher's meetings. Herrmann got an extended taste last year and they provide a natural LH/RH balance. Growing pains are natural, but also provides opportunities to get better. The 2014 Twins aren't going to win the division, let's invest in the future and let these two guys compete everyday and work in tandem. Save your money and get a quality bat in the OF or 3B or even just for someone to DH. No use in blocking these two guys development.


I could live with that...carry a vet in Rochester to call on if need be and hope Pinto gets better defensively fast. I'm fine with signing a cheap vet for defense while Pinto gets some time in Rochester.