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Matt Capps, Bill Smith and the trade that ruined Twins baseball

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#161 Mike Sixel

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Posted 28 February 2014 - 11:14 AM

The first option, which is why I say Hughes has upside while Drew does not. Also, Hughes has park adjusted upside while Drew does not. Put them together and I would put money on Hughes producing more WAR over the next two years than Drew. Factor in the draft pick, and the case gets better for Hughes.


How about Drew vs any Twins SS in the system right now?

It's been a fun year so far, GO Twins. Oh, and I have at least one blog post now......The table on my first blog post is now fixed. Sigh.


#162 diehardtwinsfan

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Posted 28 February 2014 - 11:34 AM

How about Drew vs any Twins SS in the system right now?



To me, this all comes down to opportunity costs. No one doubts that Drew is an upgrade over Florimon. The issue at hand is how much (likely a couple wins) and for what cost. If you assume 1 win is abou 5M, Drew's asking price is substantially more than what he's going to provide, and that's before you throw a mid 40s pick in a deep draft into the mix.

I said before I waffle on this, and I still really don't care either way. I suspect that if it was just cost, the Twins would have signed him already, but they are giving up A LOT to get an upgrade, and it isn't as though they are one piece away. This is the type of deal I think they would be making in 2015, or potentially even next year if things break right, but not now.

#163 Kwak

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Posted 28 February 2014 - 12:14 PM

In today's Star Tribune, Jim Souhan touched on the subject of SS (sorry, i don't have the link, I read it in a newspaper). In short, it was stated that it was accepted that Florimon can't hit enough, but that Santana was deemed the "SS of the future". This is why the Twins have passed on Drew--they believe they have as good (or better) for and much less money. Don't mention payroll to me--I've expressed my opinion on payroll often enough that the dots can be connected.

#164 spycake

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Posted 28 February 2014 - 12:25 PM

This was a good post, but my big concern is looking at it in a vacuum. I'm not sure either scenario is necessarily "likely" but both are possible.


Definitely agreed. I approve of the Hughes signing, and I'd probably be in on Drew too (assuming reports of his ~3/30 demands are accurate). When you consider performance as well as age, they are actually not dissimilar moves.

#165 Major League Ready

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Posted 28 February 2014 - 12:36 PM

In today's Star Tribune, Jim Souhan touched on the subject of SS (sorry, i don't have the link, I read it in a newspaper). In short, it was stated that it was accepted that Florimon can't hit enough, but that Santana was deemed the "SS of the future". This is why the Twins have passed on Drew--they believe they have as good (or better) for and much less money. Don't mention payroll to me--I've expressed my opinion on payroll often enough that the dots can be connected.


I was curious if Santana was playing into their decision mostly because I wondered how confident the F/O is in him defensively.

#166 spycake

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Posted 28 February 2014 - 12:43 PM

The first option, which is why I say Hughes has upside while Drew does not. Also, Hughes has park adjusted upside while Drew does not. Put them together and I would put money on Hughes producing more WAR over the next two years than Drew. Factor in the draft pick, and the case gets better for Hughes.


I just think you're underestimating the established difference between the two players -- they are 3 years apart, but Drew is starting from a much higher baseline (by rWAR, anyway***). Decline from Drew and improvement from Hughes might make up the difference, but in no way is it likely or a safe bet that Hughes will blow Drew away in that regard. Heck, Hughes is going to need significant improvement to even get back up to 2 rWAR after his poor 2013 showing.

I actually like them both, and think they warrant similar consideration and investment from the Twins.

*** Why doesn't fWAR like Drew as much? Looks like they might not like his defense...?

#167 nicksaviking

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Posted 28 February 2014 - 12:57 PM

Bad trades? What about Tom Brunansky for Tommy Herr? For the current regime, it wasn't technically a trade, but everyone would probably like to go back in time and retract David Ortiz in exchange for spending reduction.


Yup, there have been some bad trades, but I'll remember this as one that ruined my childhood. I cried when we watched the news and this was reported. I'm not sure I should admit that though, I was already 10 after all.

Nice first post, and even nicer handle. I'm totally for nicknaming Deduno "The Dude."

#168 birdwatcher

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Posted 28 February 2014 - 01:21 PM

How about Drew vs any Twins SS in the system right now?


That's a completely irrelevant question is a vacuum, mike. You know that most people would say he's currently (emphasis here) superior, although Souhan and others are not convinced the Twins view Santana as very far off from being ready.

We don't know what the Twins think about Drew. We don't know what the Twins think of Drew compared to their other current or potential near future (emphasis here) options. You can assume they are balking at signing him because they don't want to spend any more money, and you would probably be wrong. You might also assume they haven't signed him because they don't think the potential benefit is worth the current price, and you would probably be right. If I thought signing Drew was a good idea, I'd just have to accept the likelihood that the Twins, for reasons they are not going to share with me, disagree, and I'm not going to find fault with that given how little I know and how much they know.

You don't fit these categories, mike, but some of our friends actually believe the only reason he hasn't been signed is because the Twins are running some kind of spreadsheet that helps them never ever put wins and losses ahead of profits. And some actually believe they have some insight that would suggest the Twins are making a poor judgment call about Drew, since it doesn't match theirs

#169 cmathewson

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Posted 28 February 2014 - 01:45 PM

*** Why doesn't fWAR like Drew as much? Looks like they might not like his defense...?


Bingo. Looking at his FanGraphs defense page, he actually had a good year last year with a 5.8 UZR and a 6.7 UZR/150. But his career numbers are kind of ugly. His net career UZR is -18.8. As recently as 2012, he had a UZR of -7. When I speak of regression, I factor in defense, of course, and I think his defense is more prone to regression than his offense, considering career numbers plus old legs. I don't think his overall WAR will be close to Florimon, but his dWAR will be much worse over the next couple of years.

I also think you gloss over variability in his baseline, assuming 2013 is his baseline. I think it's closer to a career year. In six of his eight years, his WAR has been at 2 or below, twice below 0. He's had two career years (2010 and 2013). He's prime for regression from those, not even factoring in age.

In three of the last five years, Hughes has had WAR in the 2.5 range. He's much more consistent. Unlike Drew, he's never had a negative WAR. And, also unlike Drew, he is three years younger, just entering his prime this year. Finally, I don't think you can over asses park effects. Something like 12 homers Hughes gave up last year are routine fly balls in Target Field. Something like 12 doubles off Drew's bat in Fenway last year are routine fly balls in Target Field.
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#170 Mike Sixel

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Posted 28 February 2014 - 02:24 PM

I believe the Twins are making this decision for whatever reason they are making it. I have no idea why they are making it.

I don't agree, given the information I have, with the decision.

It's been a fun year so far, GO Twins. Oh, and I have at least one blog post now......The table on my first blog post is now fixed. Sigh.


#171 cmathewson

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Posted 28 February 2014 - 02:55 PM

I was curious if Santana was playing into their decision mostly because I wondered how confident the F/O is in him defensively.


The F/O has praised his range while talking up what he has to work on. They don't like praising their own prospects, preferring to talk about stuff they have to work on. But I have read a lot of praise. As recently as Twins Fest, Ryan called him a "dark horse" candidate to start with the big club sometime this year.

When he is ready, he is a big upgrade on range, according to the scouting reports I've read. And he's an upgrade with the bat, not huge, but something. On another thread, they talk about trading for Gregorius. I think Santana is a good comp for him with the bat, with more speed and range.
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#172 spycake

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Posted 28 February 2014 - 03:06 PM

Bingo. Looking at his FanGraphs defense page, he actually had a good year last year with a 5.8 UZR and a 6.7 UZR/150. But his career numbers are kind of ugly. His net career UZR is -18.8. As recently as 2012, he had a UZR of -7. When I speak of regression, I factor in defense, of course, and I think his defense is more prone to regression than his offense, considering career numbers plus old legs. I don't think his overall WAR will be close to Florimon, but his dWAR will be much worse over the next couple of years.


Interesting that Drew's negative UZR is almost entirely 2008 and earlier, though (his first 2.5 seasons). He's been solidly positive UZR 4 of the last 5 years, with the only exception being his 2012 recovery year. His UZR/150 rates during that time actually beat Florimon's 2013 rate (which is another data point which make me question whether Florimon is any kind of special defender at short or merely an average one).

I also think you gloss over variability in his baseline, assuming 2013 is his baseline. I think it's closer to a career year. In six of his eight years, his WAR has been at 2 or below, twice below 0. He's had two career years (2010 and 2013). He's prime for regression from those, not even factoring in age.


I wasn't using 2013 as Drew's baseline. I was using rWAR (B-Ref WAR), and if you toss out 2012 and prorate 2011 for the ankle, Drew has 3+ rWAR every season after 2007. Although even by fWAR (Fangraphs WAR), if you prorate 2011, Drew is likewise 3+ WAR every year after 2009, and twice was 4+ (prorating 2013). If I am reading Fangraphs correctly, he's cumulatively above *average* (not just replacement) on both sides of the ball after 2007, even before a positional adjustment.

I wouldn't necessarily pay Drew like he's a guaranteed 3+ WAR player, but then again, 2/20 or even 3/30 isn't paying him like he's a guaranteed 3+ WAR player.

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Posted 28 February 2014 - 04:02 PM

The F/O has praised his range while talking up what he has to work on. They don't like praising their own prospects, preferring to talk about stuff they have to work on. But I have read a lot of praise. As recently as Twins Fest, Ryan called him a "dark horse" candidate to start with the big club sometime this year.

When he is ready, he is a big upgrade on range, according to the scouting reports I've read. And he's an upgrade with the bat, not huge, but something. On another thread, they talk about trading for Gregorius. I think Santana is a good comp for him with the bat, with more speed and range.

Isn't the one talking point in favor of Florimon his range? And Santana's going to be "a big upgrade" over that?

#174 Major League Ready

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Posted 28 February 2014 - 05:00 PM

Isn't the one talking point in favor of Florimon his range? And Santana's going to be "a big upgrade" over that?


I read (can't remember where) that his range is ridiculous. That would be fun to watch. His errors have been high. Does anyone know if that problem is trending in the right direction?

#175 ashbury

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Posted 28 February 2014 - 05:20 PM

This is the type of deal I think they would be making in 2015, or potentially even next year


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#176 birdwatcher

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Posted 28 February 2014 - 09:32 PM

I read (can't remember where) that his range is ridiculous. That would be fun to watch. His errors have been high. Does anyone know if that problem is trending in the right direction?


On today's radio broadcast, Gladden spoke about his conversation with Brad Steil in which Steil described Santana as the most athletic prospect in the system, more athletic than even Buxton apparently, but then suggested that Engelb Vielma wasn't far behind either of them.

#177 jokin

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Posted 28 February 2014 - 10:07 PM

On today's radio broadcast, Gladden spoke about his conversation with Brad Steil in which Steil described Santana as the most athletic prospect in the system, more athletic than even Buxton apparently, but then suggested that Engelb Vielma wasn't far behind either of them.


Where would Polanco and Minier rank in that list? I have no knowledge of
Vielma's athleticism, but it seems rather unlikely that anyone in the organization, even Santana, is more athletic than Buxton.

#178 howieramone1406390264

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Posted 28 February 2014 - 10:15 PM

Where would Polanco and Minier rank in that list? I have no knowledge of
Vielma's athleticism, but it seems rather unlikely that anyone in the organization, even Santana, is more athletic than Buxton.


Yeah, kind of hard to believe our favorite team's farm director.

#179 Kwak

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Posted 28 February 2014 - 10:25 PM

Yeah, kind of hard to believe our favorite team's farm director.


Might this man have been in charge of the farm system during the previous decade? If so, that might explain why the cupboard was found bare in 2011.

#180 johnnydakota

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Posted 28 February 2014 - 10:35 PM

On today's radio broadcast, Gladden spoke about his conversation with Brad Steil in which Steil described Santana as the most athletic prospect in the system, more athletic than even Buxton apparently, but then suggested that Engelb Vielma wasn't far behind either of them.

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Edited by johnnydakota, 02 March 2014 - 12:12 AM.