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Who is in your 2022 Opening Day Lineup?


John Bonnes
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1 hour ago, Sconnie said:

Catch: Jeffers
1B: Kirilloff
2B: Polanco
3B: Donaldson
SS: FA Signing (Guess: Freddy Galvis)
LF: Larnach,
CF:  Celestino
RF: Kepler

DH: Rotation 

DH/Bench: Sano, Arraez, Refsnyder, Garver

assumption: Buxton traded for Pitching

Donaldson DHs close to half time

Man, I think this is really close to what will happen. I should have just copied it.

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DH Garver / Sano / Donaldson

C Jeffers

1B Kirilloff

2B Arraez

SS Polanco

3B Miranda

RF Kepler

CF Buxton

LF Larnach

BENCH Gordon, maybe Rortvedt

 

Starters: Ober, Ryan, Jax, Gant, Dobnak

Bullpen: Colome, Rogers, Duffey

Coulombe, Alcala, Farrell

Minaya, Garza

with Moran, Hamilton, Barraclough in the wings

 

Lots of payroll saving for this year

 

Willians Astudillo, where are you?

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6 hours ago, Mike Sixel said:

I'm betting Rooker isn't even on the 40 man, let alone the roster next year.

I'm mostly on the Vanimal position at this point, I'd think.

Rooker was drafted in the first round by this front office.  They will give him chances.

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This is all based on whether or not the Twins are able to extend Buxton.  I believe they will, because of the PR hit if they cannot. 

So

C - Jeffers, Rortvedt

1B Kirloff, Sano

2nd - Polonco

ss - Martin

3B - Arraez

LF - Miranda/Laurach

CF - Buxton

RF - Kepler

DH - Sano/ host of others

Garver is traded if we can get value, Donaldson is traded  to get money for pitching down the road

Martin may not be the answer at SS, but I like the idea of pest hitters.  Players that make you throw strikes and a host of pitches. 

This club would seem to do that and become a problem with the bulk of players creating high pitch counts, which will ruin pitching staffs for days after a series with the Twins. 

This club will not require a huge payroll for the position players.  I would funnel that money into really upgrading the pitching staff and running a host of near ready pitchers through to see what we have.  

Kepler will be here because he has little value at this time.  Cleveland, which fits well as a trade partner, is not going to give up a good starter for a package headlined by Kepler.  

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8 hours ago, Vanimal46 said:

I’d have Celestino waiting in AAA as Buxton insurance. To be honest I haven’t looked much at the FA OF market yet. Since I spent a huge amount signing Seager the 4th OF would have to be on the cheaper side. I don’t know if Garlick is the right guy. Hopefully someone a little better who is not just a platoon player against LH pitching. Then they can split time with Larnach in LF. 

If we sign a FA OF this offseason we could probably sign Rosario cheaply.  I doubt he is as bad as he was this season.

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3 hours ago, Vanimal46 said:

What kind of pitching can they get back for Larnach, Sano, Rooker, or… Sabato? 

If they're trying to swing a trade for a front end arm, Arraez isn't going to be the headliner. 

If they're making a move for a mid-back end type, I think a Larnach package can get that done. Maybe I'm higher on him than you are?

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Assumptions:

1. Twins understand who they are: a mid market team that went all in over the past two seasons and failed (both financially and in the standings). 

2. Ownership and the FO know that they don’t have the pitching talent or currently the $ necessary to solve the pitching, particularly with Buxton being resigned. 


3. The team’s roster of promising young players, both in the field and on the mound, will need to be developed in 2022 in order to develop the talent and financial space to open a new window for 2023-2025.

4. Buxton is resigned. That’s a must. So with Donaldson, Kepler and Sano still on the team, there is not enough $ to go top end on a FA SS or SP. That’s the reality. So the question for those three players is who is going to be on the 2023 roster? 

The assignment was opening day lineup in 2022 - I’ll give you end of year as well.

C - Garvers, Jeffers (and Rortvedt). Two are always on the team, but all three are needed through the year. All three are around at the end of the year (but one of them, most likely Garver, could be moved at the deadline). 

1B - Kiriloff. Starting and ending.

2B - Polanco. Starting and ending.

SS - FA.  Lewis is not ready and the depth in the FA market is too good to pass up for solving the SS market for three years. 

3B - Arraez/Miranda. Donaldson is moved. We won’t get all the $ back, but it’s a sunk cost anyway. His trade value will not be any higher than over the off-season based on his strong September. Arraez starts the year and Miranda gets the call early in the year at some point. 

DH - Sano. He gets another year to prove he can hit .240, 40 dingers, and 100 RBIs.  

INF Util - Gordon. In reality, Arraez, Gordon Polanco and Miranda all are available to play multiple INF positions (with Arraez and Gordon also available for the OF) based on injuries, rest, and in game strategy/decisions.

LF - Larnach/Martin. Larnach starts in LF but the goes to RF. See below.

CF - Buxton. This has to happen. 

RF - Kepler/Larnach. Kepler gets the start but is moved by the TD (to make room for Martin, create $, and receive quality and controllable BP help or minor league SP in return). 

OF Util - Celestino. He is defensively very strong and can play CF when BB gets hurt.

By the end of 2022, this lineup of 13 position players is balanced in terms of defense, offense, youth, veterans, flexibility and pay. It will be ready to compete in 2023. 

As an aside, I’m not sure Rocco is the guy to lead this team given its relative youth and the importance of the ongoing development of the younger players. 
 

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8 hours ago, Brandon said:

Rooker was drafted in the first round by this front office.  They will give him chances.

I’m not so sure about that. I’d put Rooker at 50/50 right now. While this front office drafted him, I think they also realize they can’t continue to assemble a roster full of no-position players and succeed.

I don’t know which players they’ll keep and which they’ll jettison but Rooker is certainly on the list of candidates. 

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35 minutes ago, Brock Beauchamp said:

I’m not so sure about that. I’d put Rooker at 50/50 right now. While this front office drafted him, I think they also realize they can’t continue to assemble a roster full of no-position players and succeed.

I don’t know which players they’ll keep and which they’ll jettison but Rooker is certainly on the list of candidates. 

I think Brandon is right. Over his last 18 games, Rooker is hitting .294/.419/.510. Unless he collapses (certainly possible), you could argue that he's slowly adjusting to ML hitting and first round picks tend to get multiple chances. I think it's probably more a 80/20 odds that he stays.

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6 minutes ago, gunnarthor said:

I think Brandon is right. Over his last 18 games, Rooker is hitting .294/.419/.510. Unless he collapses (certainly possible), you could argue that he's slowly adjusting to ML hitting and first round picks tend to get multiple chances. I think it's probably more a 80/20 odds that he stays.

Good point, I hadn't checked in on him lately. If he finishes strong, he's likely on the 2022 roster. I knew he was playing better but didn't realize he was performing to the tune of a .900 OPS.

In that case, I hope all of Cave, Refsnyder, and Garlick are gone and the Twins go find a stop-gap backup centerfielder until Celestino is ready. They can't continue to backfill a roster with corner players.

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12 minutes ago, farmerguychris said:

John I think you're guess is spot on.  Do need to rent a SS for 1 season (unless can get a Story long term).  Otherwise this free agency season should be pretty boring for position players.  Pitching, pitching, pitching.

As much as I'd love to see the Twins field a competent shortstop for once, I really hope they don't spend money on a long term shortstop. They really need to invest that money in starting pitching and 1-2 good bullpen pieces.

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Opening Day lineup? I've heard it said that the single best way to predict tomorrow's weather is to anticipate more of the same from today, until something changes.  I'll go with that philosophy here too, and expect minimal changes from this season, along the lines several have suggested here. The thing is, the opening day lineup will last only through batting practice that day, during which someone will suffer a pulled head or sprained liver from a freak accident involving a batting donut and pitching stickum.

Sorry, made the mistake of reading RandBall's Stu before diving into this topic.

 

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13 hours ago, tony&rodney said:

The lineups should probably include the starting pitchers (5 or 6) and a couple of relief pitchers too. I say this because if the Twins are to field a team hopeful of winning half of their games they will need some pitching. The idea that they can trot out their prospects to fill the starting pitching roles and use whatever lineup with one or even two additions to the lineup to make things good will likely result in 100+ losses.

So ... I'm hoping that Ober and Ryan are good for two spots but I'm adding through trades, although I'm open to good free agent additions. Miami needs C and OF: Larnach, Jeffers, Duffey, and Rooker for Alcantara and Meyer and we can add a couple of lower prospects if needed or just get SA. The Rockies need someone on base and youthful pitching: Arraez, Duran, Cavaco, and Cave for Marquez and we can add more. Milwaukee needs 1B, 3B, and DH: Sano for Lauer. Sign an Alex Wood or so and we have Marquez, Alcantara, Ryan, Lauer, Ober, and Wood, Just do something to bring in somebody that can pitch. I remain excited by the prospects: Winder, Balazovic, SWR, Sands, and Varland but they need space and time.

I agree with tony& rodney. I really like his trade options. We really need pitchers and we have a lot redundant players that we need to reduce. Trading is the best option, we upgrade our pitching and help relieve our 40 man problem. I like Arraez but he's the only player that is highly valued and is expendable. Kepler is underrated, I wouldn't trade him.

SS is a must, I like the options given. I've always liked Taylor he could be a fallback option, he could also be a good CF back up.

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Larnach and Rooker have shown they still belong in AAA, maybe for career.

Twins will not let Simmons go as they need defense BADLY, ditto for Donaldson.

Utility, hmm, Gordon seems to be improving, Astudillo must stay -- Arraez's numbers at second are actually good but Polanco is not going any where so....

Kirilloff, I hope he is as good as his first go around showed; or they can put Sano on Marie Osmond's diet.; 

I would bet Cruz is back for DH, they need offense their badly; at catcher they need Rortvedt defense and Garver offense when he is on a hot streak -- Jeffers offers neither. (Astudillo must be kept as a back-up catcher as his numbers there are better than Jeffers)

Pitching is a slough that Twins management does not seem to have clue how to handle.

Spring Training will tell a lot , just as it did when it showed Rooker was not ready for the Majors this years.

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Batting order vs RHP for 2022 (spot in the order only applies to the primary choice, listed first):

1-Arraez 3B / (Miranda)

2-Michael Brantley LF

3-Buxton CF (Billy Hamilton) (Mark Contreras) (Jimmy Kerrigan) (Gordon) 

4-Polanco SS (Gordon) (Maggi) 

5-Kirilloff RF

6-Donaldson DH (Miranda)

7-Sano 1B (Kirilloff)

8-Gordon 2B / (Arraez) 

9-Garver/ (Jeffers), (Jeffers-> Garver just as likely) / Rortvedt C

Top backups either on Twins roster or Saints:

Mark Contreras LF, CF, RF

Jimmy Kerrigan LF, CF, RF

Larnach LF, RF

Kepler RF

Drew Maggi SS

Release

Cave

Use the money saved by only increasing spending on Brantley and possibly Hamilton as eveyday players to get this starting rotation:

 1-Robbie Ray or Syndergaard

2-Danny Duffy

3-Michael Pineda

4-Joe Ryan

5-Bailey Ober

 

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1 hour ago, Aerodeliria said:

If we keep Arraez, can we just keep him as leadoff instead of moving him all over the lineup card? 

He's bad against LHP, which is why he moves around the lineup card.

Platoon Splits
I Split G GS PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS TB GDP HBP SH SF IBB ROE BAbip tOPS+
  vs RHP 212   679 619 99 206 39 5 6 59 4 4 50 55 .333 .381 .441 .822 273 8 3 0 7 2 5 .354 111
  vs LHP 126   234 198 22 49 6 1 0 19 0 0 34 28 .247 .355 .288 .643 57 3 0 0 2 1 0 .285 66
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 9/17/2021.
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17 minutes ago, LA VIkes Fan said:

Wow, Arraez is bad against LH pitching.

Almost all LHB are bad against LHP. Even all-time great talents like Joe Mauer have splits like this:

Platoon Splits
I Split G GS PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS TB GDP HBP SH SF IBB ROE BAbip tOPS+
  vs RHP 1669   5449 4699 740 1477 332 26 110 625 38 13 702 659 .314 .401 .466 .868 2191 144 6 4 38 131 41 .345 110
  vs LHP 1153   2511 2231 278 646 96 4 33 298 14 6 237 375 .290 .360 .381 .740 849 64 19 2 22 14 23 .332 80
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 9/17/2021.
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3 hours ago, Brock Beauchamp said:

He's bad against LHP, which is why he moves around the lineup card.

Platoon Splits
I Split G GS PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS TB GDP HBP SH SF IBB ROE BAbip tOPS+
  vs RHP 212   679 619 99 206 39 5 6 59 4 4 50 55 .333 .381 .441 .822 273 8 3 0 7 2 5 .354 111
  vs LHP 126   234 198 22 49 6 1 0 19 0 0 34 28 .247 .355 .288 .643 57 3 0 0 2 1 0 .285 66
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 9/17/2021.

.355 obp isn't bad at leadoff.  His average and slugging are another story.

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I am going to pull a John Bonnes and update my ideals a little.  Assumptions, we sign Buxton to an extension.  Twins love positional flexibility.  So 1 expect players playing multiple positions and 2 I will only post top 2 at each position.....except DH.

1B Sano / Killeroff (50-50 split in time)

2B Polanco / Arreaz 

SS Chris Taylor (positional flexibility should Lewis prove ready and costs less than Story)

3B Donaldson / Arreaz (65 /20/ 15)

LF Killeroff / Larnarch 

CF Buxton

RF Rooker / Arraez

DH Sano / Donaldson / Garver

C Garver / Jeffers

Bench is Arraez, Jeffers, Larnarch in platoon for LF and some DH and RF, Gordon and if possible Astudillo.

We could replace Gordon with someone who has more CF experience.

Kepler is a Twins type of player on a Twins type of contract.  But we have replacement options for a fraction of his cost and we can apply the savings to pitching.  Miranda factors into this lineup somehow and some time in RF is a possibility if both Larnarch and Rooker do not meet standards.

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O.K.  I'll give this a try:

C  Garver, Rortvedt

1B  Kiriloff

2B  Polanco

3B  Donaldson

SS  FA  C. Taylor, Galvis, Iglesias

LF  Arraez/Refsnyder/Rooker

CF  Buxton

RF  Kepler (his trade value is too low.  Twins are better off sticking with him for now).

DH  Sano

We will trade Jeffers 27.9 and Larnach 28.7 (56.6) total value to the Marlins for Sandy Alcantara (56.6 total value). 

Sign Danny Duffy SP.  SP:  Alcantara, Duffey, Joe Ryan, Bailey Ober, Gant, Dobnak

Sign or trade for a real closer:  THAT GUY, Rogers, Duffey, Alcala, Theilbar, Minaya.

I can see Austin Martin and Miranda being called up SOON (service time games).  

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11 hours ago, Brock Beauchamp said:

As much as I'd love to see the Twins field a competent shortstop for once, I really hope they don't spend money on a long term shortstop. They really need to invest that money in starting pitching and 1-2 good bullpen pieces.

I disagree, I think you get more bang for your buck putting that money into a hitter and if they are a good fielder (like Seager) that helps ALL your pitchers.

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C - Garver, Jeffers

1B - Kiriloff

2B- Polanco

3B - Arraez/Miranda

SS - Seager

LF - Larnach

CF - Buxton

RF - Kepler

DH - Sano/Rooker

Deal Donaldson for pitching or to free up money for Seager.  We absolutely have to sign a right-handed hitting OF.  Probably two for the bench.  And one of them should play CF.

Arraez-Polanco-Seager-Buck-Kiriloff-Garver-Larnach-Sano-Kepler is a damn fine lineup and a not-terrible defense.  Pitching probably isn't contention ready in 2022, but opportunities will be there and a rotation of Ober-Ryan-Pineda-Trade Target-Competent FA Guy is at least at a "not embarrassing" level of quality.

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38 minutes ago, TheLeviathan said:

I disagree, I think you get more bang for your buck putting that money into a hitter and if they are a good fielder (like Seager) that helps ALL your pitchers.

I actually agree under most circumstances but the pitching staff is going to be so underwhelming that the biggest, easy gains will likely be found there.

It's not hard to find large improvement when you're likely fielding players below replacement level.

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4 minutes ago, Brock Beauchamp said:

I actually agree under most circumstances but the pitching staff is going to be so underwhelming that the biggest, easy gains will likely be found there.

If I had any confidence in the organization paying a pitcher $100 million, I’d agree with you. I believe it’s an organizational philosophy set by ownership to not spend top dollar for starting pitching. Erv Santana remains the largest FA contract in team history and he was $13.5 million AAV IIRC. 

I have more confidence they’ll spend up for a top level SS who will play almost every game. 

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