Kenta Maeda, with his underrated toolbox, would look great in Minnesota. Since his rookie season in 2016, Maeda ranks second to Max Scherzer among all pitchers with at least 1,000 at-bats against right-handed hitters (.199). In a right-handed heavy league and division, his prowess is welcomed with open arms.
A large pull to Madison Bumgarner was his ability to pitch at an extremely high level in October. On a much lesser but comparably impressive scale, Maeda has a 3.31 ERA in 24 postseason games. Most of his appearances came out of the bullpen, but I foresee Maeda pitching the first four or five innings against the Yankees or Astros this October.
Brusdar Graterol is an immense talent. His ability and upside have been tarnished in recent days by both the industry and Twins fans convincing themselves that he really isn’t that great. He is special. I wasn’t against this Graterol-for-Maeda swap, but I don’t want to see Brusdar go. Keep him as an overpowering gun in the 2020 bullpen if you can. He is an asset on and off the field for Minnesota.
The Twins farm system is so incredibly deep with MLB-ready arms and bats. I am of the belief that they could put together a package for the Dodgers to acquire Maeda. I think he’s going to be traded regardless, so why not cut out the Red Sox, shift the focus away from Graterol, and group two or three top 20 prospects for Maeda?
The Dodgers can work separately for Mookie Betts and David Price, and the Twins can exit this circus with Chaim Bloom and the Red Sox. Stash Graterol in an already great bullpen, pencil in Maeda as your number three starter, and let’s go to battle starting March 26th in Oakland.
Would the Dodgers push to grab Graterol for their own World Series caliber roster? Probably. Say no. Flex your muscles of depth in the farm system and work a little magic to keep arguably your best pitching prospect while obtaining Maeda, who makes this Twins team that much better. This has been a wild ride, but the Twins can come out on top, and in a big way.
What do you think? Comment below!