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About this blog

On-site Twins coverage from Brandon Warne, Zone Coverage Twins beat reporter

Entries in this blog

WARNE: Forming a Way Too Early Twins Offseason Blueprint

The Minnesota Twins are certainly still in the thick of things in the Wild Card race, but it’s never too early to look to the offseason to get a feel for what the team might do to improve. In fact, there could be a lot of moves as the team looks to reframe itself in the images of Derek Falvey and Thad Levine, as we’ve already seen a personnel purge in the scouting and analytics departments with more to come.     That could even include at the top, with manager Paul Molitor working on the la

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

Debunking Your Favorite Logical Fallacies Regarding the Twins at the Trade Deadline

This is just part of the full story, which can be read at Zone Coverage here.   In case you've been under a rock over the past four days, you've no doubt seen the widespread reaction to how the Minnesota Twins handled the trade deadline.   It hasn't been great!   But most of it isn't rooted in facts or solid rationale. And I get it; fans are fired up because they get to know these players and then one day they're gone. I don't want people to lose sight of this even though I don't watch the Twins

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

Minnesota Twins Offseason Blueprint -- Version I

This is an excerpt from an article that appears at Zone Coverage; click here to read it in full.   The celebratory alcohol is barely dry on the shirts handed out to the Boston Red Sox after winning the World Series on Sunday night, but in a news cycle that never sleeps, we’re already moving onto the 2019 season via offseason moves.   The Minnesota Twins are facing a pivotal offseason. The brain trust of Derek Falvey and Thad Levine have overseen a swinging pendulum so far through two seasons, an

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

WARNE: Twins Unequivocally Did the Right Thing at the Trade Deadline

It’s not often that I allow someone in my mentions to get me so wound up that I devote an entire, stand-alone article to a single person, but here we are.   The tweet in question — feel free to click and read the mind-bending thread in all its glory — appears as follows: http://zonecoverage.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/Capture-1.jpg   NOTE: This person has since blocked me for reasons that don’t entirely make sense. He has also deleted the tweets, so I have saved this screenshot to remember hi

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

WARNE: The Twins Offense is too Good to Bunt -- Seriously.

Read this story in full on Zone Coverage here.   It’s a play as old as the game itself, and maybe that’s because the DH didn’t always exist. It’s the bunt, a time-honored tradition that is being phased out of the game more and more every year.   Fangraphs has sacrifice bunt totals dating back to 1895, and according to their database, the 925 sacrifice bunts laid down by teams in 2017 was the second-lowest figure in MLB history. Only the 1900 season (806 bunts) featured fewer, and there were only

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

The Case for Trading Eddie Rosario this Winter

This is an excerpt from an article that appears at Zone Coverage in full here. Please click through to read it in full.   No matter what direction the 2019 season takes the Minnesota Twins, their offseason is going to be filled with intrigue.   Three of the team’s five starting pitchers — Kyle Gibson, Jake Odorizzi and Michael Pineda — are eligible for free agency, leaving Jose Berrios and Martin Perez, who has a team option, as potentially the sole holdovers heading into 2020. And while the Twi

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

WARNE: Four Trades the Minnesota Twins Should Consider Making

We’re now past the All-Star Game and headed full steam toward the trade deadline on July 31. For the Minnesota Twins, a lot of things can happen between now and then, with games against Houston, the New York Yankees and the Los Angeles Dodgers coming up which may help tip the scales one way or the other toward whether the team will buy, sell or do something in the middle.   Part of the fun of this time of year is reading columns from Jon Heyman or Jim Bowden about which trades make sense. So I’v

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

WARNE: The Time is Now -- The Twins Should Call Up Zack Granite

By now you’ve probably heard that the Minnesota Twins have an outfielder who is setting the world on fire down at Triple-A. His name is Zack Granite, and he’s a jack-of-all-trades as far as outfield defense is concerned, and he’s hitting a robust .371/.423/.516 in 54 games between Triple-A Rochester (49 games) and High-A Fort Myers (five games).   He’s not just stellar in the batter’s box, but he’s stolen 119 bases over five season in the Twins system at a success rate of 73.4 percent. The succe

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

Twins Hitting Coach James Rowson Clarifies Hitting Plan for Byron Buxton

Some comments made by Twins center fielder Byron Buxton during the road trip to Fenway Park last week sent the blogosphere/Twittersphere into a tizzy. Buxton, who has hit just .209/.283/.303 this season coming into Thursday night’s game against the Orioles, told Jake Depue of 1500ESPN that he had scorned the leg kick he used to start the season in order to put the ball in play more — including more balls hit on the ground.   “[The goal is] putting the ball in play more,” Buxton told Depue. “Putt

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

WARNE: Possible September Call-Ups for the Minnesota Twins

On Sept. 1 in MLB, rosters expand. For the entire month, teams can bring up and use any player on the 40-man roster. The usage of this is varied, as some teams will empty out their minors and stock their clubhouse and dugout. Others will simply bring up some pinch-runner types and an extra bullpen arm or two.   It all depends on the team’s goals for the season and the construction of their rosters -- both 25- and 40-man. Some teams have more MLB-ready players on their 40’s than others, while oth

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

WARNE: When Everyone is Healthy, What's the Ideal Twins Lineup?

Please click through to Zone Coverage here to read this article in full.   Robbie Grossman came off the disabled list on Tuesday morning and is in the lineup against the Rays, batting ninth and DH’ing against righty Jake Odorizzi. With that move, the Twins offense is almost completely healthy.   That’s not to say that Miguel Sano is not a significant loss — he is — but rather from a health standpoint, the Twins only have one player on the shelf offensively — as opposed to, say, a handful of pitc

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

REPORTS: Twins to Promote RHP Felix Jorge from Chattanooga for Saturday Start

As the Minnesota Twins were in the process of losing to the Boston Red Sox 6-3 on Thursday night, word broke that the team had honed in on who’d make one of the starts in Saturday’s doubleheader in Kansas City.   It’ll be righty Felix Jorge, who’ll be making his big-league debut, and making the jump from Double-A Chattanooga.   The move was first floated by Mike Berardino of the St. Paul Pioneer Press early Thursday:     The move was then reported by Mariana Guzman, who covers the Twins for

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

My Nickname Jerseys for the Twins

In late August, teams around MLB will wear uniforms with nicknames on the back as the first-ever “Players Weekend.” It’ll be spanning Aug. 25-27, and the jerseys will have unusual designs to inject some more personality in the game.   You can find the full actual list of nicknames the Twins will wear here:     But if we were in charge, what would we put on the jerseys? Here’s our list -- and it’s all in good fun: Jason Castro - Michaels Chris Gimenez - The Janitor Joe Mauer - Joseph Patr

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

Looking Forward -- Who Should Start a Twins Wild Card Game?

Please click through to Zone Coverage here to read this article in its entirety.   A Minnesota Twins win coupled with a Los Angeles Angels loss on Wednesday flipped the script in the Wild Card chase yet again. The Twins halted a skid of losing three straight games and four of their last five, and jumped back ahead of the Angels by a half-game for the final Wild Card spot behind the New York Yankees.   That half-game difference will go away on Thursday, as the Twins head to Kansas City to take on

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

WARNE: What on Earth has Gotten into Eddie Rosario?

You may have noticed that Eddie Rosario has been hitting higher in the order of late. Part of it has been that the Twins have faced a number of lefties lately, and he’s one of the few batters on the team holding their own against them. Part it is also that Miguel Sano has been sidelined for the past few days after getting hit on the hand with a pitch against the Texas Rangers.   But perhaps a large part of it stems from the fact that Rosario is having a nice offensive season, too. For the season

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

WARNE: Are the Twins Buyers or Sellers?

The hottest talk on Twins fans’ lips after the promotions of Byron Buxton and Miguel Sano has been whether or not this is a team that should buy or sell at the trade deadline that looms in a mere three and a half weeks. It’s a legitimate question with no easy answer, as the Twins have hung around in a heavily competitive division. And if you buy into the idea that the Tigers could fall back a bit with the loss of Miguel Cabrera, and that the White Sox and Indians have yet to play their best ball

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

WARNE: Power Ranking the Twins 25-Man Roster — 2.o

One exercise that is fun, and in the interest of full disclosure gets a lot of people reading and talking, is ranking things in order as a “power ranking.” No seriously, if you call something a “power ranking” you’re guaranteed to see traffic go through the roof. I’m thinking of calling my podcast “power ranking.”   OK, I’m kidding.   But it’s a fun exercise to apply to a team’s 25-man roster. My general theory — and this can be altered if viewers think there is a better way — is to base a playe

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

WARNE: All Twins “Fingerprints” Team

Please click through to Zone Coverage here to read this article in full.   A lot of fans lament about how players get better after they leave the Twins, and sometimes it’s fun to draw up a 25-man roster of former players to see just how true that is.   We’ve changed that up a little bit with this exercise, however. Here, we’re looking for players who have Twins fingerprints on them. Did a player get picked in the Rule 5 draft and get sent back? They would count. Did the Twins draft them but not

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

What Statcast Says About Minnesota Twins Outfielders — 2016-18

This article appears in full on Zone Coverage here. Please click through to read it all.   Perhaps the most brilliant mind in contemporary baseball analysis — at least among those creating products available to the public — is Daren Willman, the proprietor of Baseball Savant, a website he created on his own before joining forces with MLB.com.   The site is a treasure trove of everything you could ever hope to imagine to learn about the game. You truly are limited only by your own imagination. I

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

WARNE: Shopping What’s Left in Free Agency for the Minnesota Twins

Pitchers and catchers report for the Minnesota Twins in less than a week, yet the pile of free agents looks as picked over as a Thanksgiving buffet after the first pass.   In short, there are plenty of leftovers — and primo ones, at that.   The Twins have already signed four pitchers to MLB deals, but could still stand to stock up on the remaining goods — all of which are likely to come at a lower price than when the winter started. It also isn’t a perfect roster for the Twins at this point. Sur

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

WARNE: How Can the Minnesota Twins Address their Relief Woes?

This is an excerpt from an article which originates at Zone Coverage. Click here to read it in full.   It’s not hard to find people with the opinion that the Minnesota Twins need to make a move to address their bullpen.   Those people aren’t exactly wrong, either.   As of this writing, the Twins are ninth in the AL with a bullpen ERA of 4.73. They’re also ninth in WHIP (1.39) and 11th in strikeouts per nine innings (8.3).   Each of those numbers, on their surface, are not terribly exciting. But

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

WARNE: Trying to Make Sense of the Buxton Decision

This is an excerpt from an article on Zone Coverage; read it in full here.   Over the weekend the Minnesota Twins made waves in the baseball community by announcing that they were not bringing Byron Buxton up when the Triple-A season ends on Monday. The decision effectively ended Buxton’s 2018 season before it really got a chance to get going, and created a take-storm for one big reason.   By not bringing Buxton up for the last month of the season, they’ll retain his rights through the 2022 seas

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

MUST SEE: Fan Tweets Brian Dozier Proof He Hit a Home Run

In the third inning of the Minnesota Twins’ 8-1 loss to the Kansas City Royals at Kauffman Stadium on Friday night, Brian Dozier hit a long foul ball to the right field corner on a 1-1 pitch from Royals starter Jason Vargas. It was initially ruled foul, and manager Paul Molitor asked for a review.   After the review, the call was upheld due to inconclusive evidence to overturn the call.   Well, how is this for evidence?     Luke Thomas appears to be a recent graduate of Missouri State Unive

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

Talking Shop with New Twins Pitching Coach Garvin Alston

It can take a little while for fans to figure out what a new coach is all about on their favorite team. For instance, it took a while into last season for Twins to hear about James Rowson’s hitting theories, both with Byron Buxton’s struggles and rebound as well as Eddie Rosario’s development as a hitter.   Now imagine how long it takes for a coach to learn about all their pupils. That’s even more true of new Twins pitching coach Garvin Alston, whose team is coming off using 36 pitchers last sea

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

WARNE: August Trades and You -- A Primer

The July 31 non-waiver trade deadline is pretty straightforward -- you’re either traded, or you aren’t. It’s after that where it gets a bit....complicated. In fact, players can technically be traded up until the end of the regular season, but they must be in an organization and on the 40-man roster on Aug. 31 to be eligible for postseason play.   In short, that’s why you might see some trades that happen between Aug. 1 and the end of the month.   The Twins have been no stranger to these types of

Brandon Warne

Brandon Warne

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