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Reconsidering Carlos Correa


Doctor Gast
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I love what Correa brings to the table here for the Twins, which everybody knows. But as I hear casually what to expect as a result of a signing, I started to get uneasy.

#1) His health- He had been fine here with Twins so why should I worry? His health history hasn't been that great, plus his size tend to limit his span of playing SS. This alone doesn't necessarily warrants worry but coupled w/ others, especially the next, it does.

#2) The money- Of course it's not my money so why should I worry? being a small/ mid-size market, we are limited to what we can do. When I hear estimates of well over $300MM of 8-9 yrs. it makes me nervous. If we sign Correa, that will hamstring us to fill other areas of need for the entirety of the contract. And of course incase of an injury, that'll limit his quality & quantity on the field performance & would eventually switch him to an inferior position. Can we afford that?

#3) He'd block Lewis's ceiling- You may say no big deal, he can be an utility player, And I'd agree with you except playing Correa at SS will retard & delay Lewis's full impact on the team and diminish his full trade value if we decide to trade him. When I hear him playing CF, that makes me very very nervous. Arraez was prohibited to play OF because of his knees & their is no danger of him running into anything or anyone. Yet it's alright for Lewis to play CF after 2 major knee surgeries and him at high risk of running into something, someone or diving at full bore. The chances of losing our MVP caliber player to another major knee surgery is high under these circumstances. For me this the tipping point.

#4) Lost secondary options -  Chances of Correa signing this year by many estimation is less than 50%. So this scenario of coming mid January or later we don't sign Correa we turn to our secondary options, Abreu is gone, Contreras will be gone, Rodon will be gone, Haniger will be gone, the other big SS won't come here (I wouldn't care because I'm not interested in any FA SS). If there is a hole burning in their pockets they'll spend it on the terrible left overs that don't fit this team.

It pains me say this but I think we should reevaluate our postion with Correa, cut bait and focus on getting our secondary options that'll help more adequately fill our needs.

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I don't not want to sign Correa because of what Lewis might become. For a long time, there was a lot of doubt that Lewis would even stick at SS. I still have those doubts. We should never pass on a huge upgrade at a position because of what a prospect might become. That is a way to build a losing team. Not to mention Lewis won't be available at the start of the season and then will need time to ramp up.

And Arraez isn't in the outfield just because of his knees, although that is a consideration. He's not in the outfield because he wasn't needed out there and he wasn't all that good out there. Lewis does not have the same knee issues Arraez has. And Arraez has knee issues playing infield, too ... if that truly is a concern for Lewis, he won't be a SS and his value is already gone. But I don't think he faces the same knee issues. If they converted him to play CF, he has value. Playing 3rd would be a good place for him, too, especially with Correa at SS. Or they trade him while his stock is good.

But to not sign a legitimately great player at a position because of what a prospect might do is foolish. And because he might not sign until January or later is no reason they can't make other deals. They know what they have to spend. Considering what DeGrom got, I'm concerned with the money Rodon will make and he his far more risk for the cost, imo, than Correa is.

Signing any player to a long term deal is a risk. Heck, every player is a risk, for that matter. They will never be worth the money at the end of it, but you sign them for what they bring at the beginning/middle of it. And signing Correa will not hamstring us. We have the payroll budget room to do it. 

These ideas are the way to never win, imo.

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Spot on, Doc!  Unless Joe P has the clout and resolve to raise our 2023 payroll to minimum of $160MM, there is no way to justify spending $40 MM/yr. on CC.  Correa obviously is an all star but what did he add to the team in 2022?  Four more wins than the previous year.  Yes,  injuries were a major factor, but  2022 exposed the major holes in this team - a cleanup hitter who could drive in runs, a catcher who could hit, an excess of LH -hitting, injury-prone OFers, only one true late-inning stalwart reliever.  As you said, it makes no sense to wait on Correa to eventually sign with a major market team, while other quality FAs are being signed.  This is exactly what happened to the Twins last year when savvier orgs, realizing an impending shutdown as probable, scooped up the best FAs -  leaving Falvine with leftovers like Archer.

Adding to my puzzlement over this apparent fixation with Correa is the fact that we acquired a perfectly acceptable SS in Farmer, with a top prospect, Lewis, potentially available in the second half of the season.  Why trade for Farmer(and lose Urshela) if he is used as a utility player?  Seems to me, if this is the case, the FO has started the offseason with a net loss to an already iffy lineup.

The smart move is filling the gaps with upgrades at DH, RF, and C.  How would Bell, Hanigan, and Contreras look in the lineup?  Maybe there is even room to add a proven late-inning reliever to bolster the team's ability to hold on in one run games.  Trade Kepler, one of our excess middle infielders, and a top 10 pitching prospect, and a proven starter by trade is possible(Lopez). I sure like this scenario better than the single addition of CC.

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My favorite kind of post, pass on a star because the next prospect will be great. star may get hurt, star may cost too much.Talk about trading the Twins scraps for an Stud pitcher. Sell hope for a future that is never there because because next year a different star will be too much money and the next prospect will save the day. Complain the Twins don't spend enough money, rinse/repeat.

Correa turned 28 in September if he will sign here for 8 years you sign him end of story. Lewis will be 24 by the time he might be ready to come back. Correa had over 20 WAR by that age and close to that since.

 

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25 minutes ago, Squirrel said:

.... Playing 3rd would be a good place for him, too, especially with Correa at SS. Or they trade him while his stock is good....

Not to mention that if Lewis (or Lee, for that matter) is legitimately good enough to play SS, there may come a time when it makes sense to flip the two and move to Correa to 3B a la Ripken/Rodriguez.

I don't fully disagree with the good Doctor in terms of the money, however. It's challenging to think of 25 percent of the team's salary being tied up in one player. But I still think I'd sign him, given that there will come a time when his 25 percent becomes 20 percent as overall salaries rise. I think there's also carry-over effect that comes in signing others when people see both an attempt to win and have a sense that a key need for any team is locked in.  

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Another way I'd think about this discussion is that I'd view the "health," "money" and "lost options" factors as stronger reasons not to sign Rodon for 5 years at $240M than they are to not sign Correa to 9 at $288M (using the MLBTR projections as reference). I'd much rather have Correa at $32M per year than Rodon at $28M. 

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29 minutes ago, IndianaTwin said:

Not to mention that if Lewis (or Lee, for that matter) is legitimately good enough to play SS, there may come a time when it makes sense to flip the two and move to Correa to 3B a la Ripken/Rodriguez.

I don't fully disagree with the good Doctor in terms of the money, however. It's challenging to think of 25 percent of the team's salary being tied up in one player. But I still think I'd sign him, given that there will come a time when his 25 percent becomes 20 percent as overall salaries rise. I think there's also carry-over effect that comes in signing others when people see both an attempt to win and have a sense that a key need for any team is locked in.  

Keep in mind that our TV contract ends after 2023. I’m hopeful we will have a better deal moving forward giving us even more flexibility that we have now to make this signing. And the 25% on one player was a discussion in another thread. It’s still very manageable.

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If the Twins don’t spend on players like Correa by focusing on the negatives, then they might as well hang it up for good.   We don’t need to be a small or mid market team.  If they spend/invest they can get there.  Hard to make money if you don’t invest.   Geez I bet jersey sales are down since we don’t have a marquee player.  Ticket sales won’t go up,  Not sure how TV revenue works.  I don’t think the Pohlad’s have ever taken a loss but  they haven’t come close to delivering what they promised when they got the new stadium.  In fact it seems like they did better in the Metrodome.  We at least have memories of really good players and a stable team.  The only players that stick around more than a few years are substandard.  The worst part is we have had the same discussions at the end of every season since have been at Target field.  It is too sad.  

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I have no problem with the team signing Correa to a 7, 8 or 9 year, big $$$ contract. There have been other big-bodied SS who have stuck at SS and stayed productive into their mid-30's. The rest of the team will be young and affordable for the foreseeable future, Buxton is the only guaranteed contract after this coming season (not sure how Dobnak's contract works, maybe he's our Bobby Bonilla until the $1 mm buyout after the 2025 season). That being said, the onus then falls on player development, this up-coming core group needs to be better than the current core group (Kepler, Sano, Polanco, Buxton, etc...).

Gray, Mahle and Maeda will need to be replaced by SWR, Varland, Winder, Balazovic and maybe Canterino and Henriquez. I would rather watch these guys struggle and develop than watch the scrap-heap hopefuls fail like has happened the last couple of seasons.

Polanco, Kepler, and this years open spots will need to be replaced by Lewis, Julien, Martin, Wallner, Larnach, Kirilloff and eventually Lee, Miller and Rodriguez amongst others. Arraez, Gordon and Farmer are fine Utility types, but should not be out there everyday.

The bullpen, while always a concern (which teams isn't?), can be taken care of with failed starters and cheap FA's (just like every other teams). 

Catcher will have to be addressed, but is probably not as big a problem as the posters on TD make it out to be, Houston won with Maldonado after all, while Philadelphia and Realmuto did not (I would rather have Realmuto though!!). Narvaez should be just fine, or a trade that doesn't totally empty the cupboard.

So, yes, I think the Twins can sign Correa without hindering team development, all reports indicate the young players like him and he is a good clubhouse presence. The other nice, shiny toys may not be affordable, but I think the team has the places in piece to win. 

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When you sign Correa you bring in the owner at 600 1st Avenue to discuss the potential of spending a big part of his big contract as a 3rd baseman.  He's been down that road.  Don't make moves based on what MIGHT happen in the future.  If Lewis comes back and earns the opportunity to take the SS job away from Correa then great.  If he's the better man, great.  If Lewis doesn't ever do that, than how are we better served by NOT signing Correa.  Two years ago we moved on from Eddie Rosario because we thought we had better future alternatives.  We can argue all day about what Rosario has done elsewhere or might have done here but what cannot be debated is that that the guys we've run out to those corner OF spots for the last 2 years have NOT met expectations.  Don't repeat that history.  If Lewis comes back and performs there will be a spot for him.  If he performs and Correa does as well, there will be a spot for both.  This team (and fan base) spends too much time worrying about having too much talent.  Such an issue will never exist. 

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2 hours ago, mike8791 said:

Spot on, Doc!  Unless Joe P has the clout and resolve to raise our 2023 payroll to minimum of $160MM, there is no way to justify spending $40 MM/yr. on CC.  Correa obviously is an all star but what did he add to the team in 2022?  Four more wins than the previous year.  Yes,  injuries were a major factor, but  2022 exposed the major holes in this team - a cleanup hitter who could drive in runs, a catcher who could hit, an excess of LH -hitting, injury-prone OFers, only one true late-inning stalwart reliever.  As you said, it makes no sense to wait on Correa to eventually sign with a major market team, while other quality FAs are being signed.  This is exactly what happened to the Twins last year when savvier orgs, realizing an impending shutdown as probable, scooped up the best FAs -  leaving Falvine with leftovers like Archer.

Adding to my puzzlement over this apparent fixation with Correa is the fact that we acquired a perfectly acceptable SS in Farmer, with a top prospect, Lewis, potentially available in the second half of the season.  Why trade for Farmer(and lose Urshela) if he is used as a utility player?  Seems to me, if this is the case, the FO has started the offseason with a net loss to an already iffy lineup.

The smart move is filling the gaps with upgrades at DH, RF, and C.  How would Bell, Hanigan, and Contreras look in the lineup?  Maybe there is even room to add a proven late-inning reliever to bolster the team's ability to hold on in one run games.  Trade Kepler, one of our excess middle infielders, and a top 10 pitching prospect, and a proven starter by trade is possible(Lopez). I sure like this scenario better than the single addition of CC.

Locking down a premium defensive SS, that also hits at the top 3 at his position has tons of value. You say he only added 4 wins. 4 wins from one player is fantastic. Yes, I agree giving up that money hurts, but if there was a time to do it, it is now. Most the rest of our talent, especially in the pitching staff is CHEAP right now. 

Also, the only reason I am even close to OK with paying Correa whatever it takes is the fact that he is 28 years old. If he were 30-32 I would not want to give him all of that money. 

Lewis is interesting. He looked really good in limited time at SS when we saw him. But he will likely take a couple years to become the kind of stud we all think he can be. He is still very YOUNG. He can get plenty of time between SS and 3rd until it is apparent he is the better option at SS than Carlos. 

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4 hours ago, IndianaTwin said:

Another way I'd think about this discussion is that I'd view the "health," "money" and "lost options" factors as stronger reasons not to sign Rodon for 5 years at $240M than they are to not sign Correa to 9 at $288M (using the MLBTR projections as reference). I'd much rather have Correa at $32M per year than Rodon at $28M. 

I agree w/ you, frankly I had no idea on Rodon's salary projections. I just threw out his name because the Twins have been linked to him and he's a fan favorite.

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5 hours ago, Squirrel said:

Keep in mind that our TV contract ends after 2023. I’m hopeful we will have a better deal moving forward

I'm not optimistic about that. The Twins need to boost their anemic attendance to match similar markets like Milwaukee and St Louis.  Paid attendance is important not just for the dollars it directly brings in, but as a proxy for overall interest in the team.  If I'm in the broadcast business and trying to sell ads, I'm not hopeful I can suddenly charge, say, 50% more during the next contract.  So I'm not offering 50% more.

I have many concerns about our FO, and this is one of the underrated ones. Twins attendance in 2022 was a tad below the worst of the dreary final years under Terry Ryan.  That is a low bar already, and not something to be proud of.  If I were owner I'd be demanding a 5-year Get Well Plan that increases the paid attendance up closer to 3,000,000 (among other metrics I'm less aware of) without relying on a World Series title or another sparkling new stadium.  St Louis does it; the franchise needs to turn the Twin Cities into a "good baseball town" too.

Joe Pohlad has a real opportunity to make his mark in the franchise's history, if he can help figure this out. And he can reach out to teams like those I named, Boston also, to help guide his thinking - the teams compete on the field and that's a zero-sum game, but financially a rising tide lifts all boats, as they say, while struggling franchises are like an anchor to the others.  Successful teams should be willing to share ideas and their accumulated wisdom. (And yes, I'm sure they and MLB in general do some things along such lines already.)

As you note, better income would make a world of difference.  I'm not seeing the progress.  Hopefully the next broadcast contract proves me wrong.

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19 hours ago, ashbury said:

I'm not optimistic about that. The Twins need to boost their anemic attendance to match similar markets like Milwaukee and St Louis.  Paid attendance is important not just for the dollars it directly brings in, but as a proxy for overall interest in the team.  If I'm in the broadcast business and trying to sell ads, I'm not hopeful I can suddenly charge, say, 50% more during the next contract.  So I'm not offering 50% more.

I have many concerns about our FO, and this is one of the underrated ones. Twins attendance in 2022 was a tad below the worst of the dreary final years under Terry Ryan.  That is a low bar already, and not something to be proud of.  If I were owner I'd be demanding a 5-year Get Well Plan that increases the paid attendance up closer to 3,000,000 (among other metrics I'm less aware of) without relying on a World Series title or another sparkling new stadium.  St Louis does it; the franchise needs to turn the Twin Cities into a "good baseball town" too.

Joe Pohlad has a real opportunity to make his mark in the franchise's history, if he can help figure this out. And he can reach out to teams like those I named, Boston also, to help guide his thinking - the teams compete on the field and that's a zero-sum game, but financially a rising tide lifts all boats, as they say, while struggling franchises are like an anchor to the others.  Successful teams should be willing to share ideas and their accumulated wisdom. (And yes, I'm sure they and MLB in general do some things along such lines already.)

As you note, better income would make a world of difference.  I'm not seeing the progress.  Hopefully the next broadcast contract proves me wrong.

All the more reason to sign Correa and show us they are worth the investment of buying tickets because they are invested in putting together a winning team. You have to spend money to make money, and while I don’t advocate going crazy (like the Rangers) I think Correa, another starter that isn’t end of the rotation and a high end BP arm or two would show me something and make me want to spend money at the ballpark … and maybe on an overpriced jersey. And I don’t think it’s an unreasonable ask.

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9 minutes ago, Squirrel said:

All the more reason to sign Correa and show us they are worth the investment of buying tickets because they are invested in putting together a winning team. You have to spend money to make money, and while I don’t advocate going crazy I think Correa, another starter that isn’t end of the rotation and a high end BP arm or two would show me something and make me want to spend money at the ballpark … and maybe on an overpriced jersey. And I don’t think it’s an unreasonable ask.

I'm in the "spend money to make money" camp, but if it's my money I want to see that 5-year Get Well Plan first.

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2 hours ago, Doctor Gast said:

I agree w/ you, frankly I had no idea on Rodon's salary projections. I just threw out his name because the Twins have been linked to him and he's a fan favorite.

My MAJOR bad on the first part. It should have said Rodin at 5 years for $140M. But I’d still say the same in rather having Correa at $32M per than Rodon at $28M per.  

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19 minutes ago, ashbury said:

I'm in the "spend money to make money" camp, but if it's my money I want to see that 5-year Get Well Plan first.

To me their get well plan is all about team construction. I will shell out money for tickets and concessions and apparel for a winner. To me the get well plan begins with a commitment to a star player and a few other spots. And a commitment to not signing so many health risk pitchers. Do that, and I come back to the stadium.

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58 minutes ago, Squirrel said:

I will shell out money for tickets and concessions and apparel for a winner.

That speaks to the zero-sum part I was referring to. No, I want a Get Well Plan that attempts to make the experience at Target Field something like what I saw at Fenway, where they most definitely don't field a winner every year.  I want a Get Well Plan that makes a trip to the park an aspirational thing for regular fans, rather than just catering to the luxury box crowd.  If I knew what that exactly entailed, I'd have my own Get Well Plan.  But I know that St Louis is doing it and has been for decades.  Achieving something like they have goes beyond a Five Year Plan but you have to start with a Plan of some sort and commit to it for decades.

This is well off the topic by now, but your comment about TV money brings out the big-picture thinker in me. ?  If signing Correa fits with such a plan, great.  In the absence of such a plan, I feel like any move no matter how big is still just treading water.

 

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26 minutes ago, ashbury said:

That speaks to the zero-sum part I was referring to. No, I want a Get Well Plan that attempts to make the experience at Target Field something like what I saw at Fenway, where they most definitely don't field a winner every year.  I want a Get Well Plan that makes a trip to the park an aspirational thing for regular fans, rather than just catering to the luxury box crowd.  If I knew what that exactly entailed, I'd have my own Get Well Plan.  But I know that St Louis is doing it and has been for decades.  Achieving something like they have goes beyond a Five Year Plan but you have to start with a Plan of some sort and commit to it for decades.

This is well off the topic by now, but your comment about TV money brings out the big-picture thinker in me. ?  If signing Correa fits with such a plan, great.  In the absence of such a plan, I feel like any move no matter how big is still just treading water.

 

St. Louis and Boston both have fielded teams that were in it, though. Maybe they didn't make the playoffs every year, but they were at least somewhat in it and in consideration to the end more often than not. And they invest in players that fans can rally around.

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23 minutes ago, Squirrel said:

St. Louis and Boston both have fielded teams that were in it, though. Maybe they didn't make the playoffs every year, but they were at least somewhat in it and in consideration to the end more often than not. And they invest in players that fans can rally around.

Boston's been sub-.500 4 out of the past 10 seasons (and if I were cherry picking even more transparently I'd say 5 of the past 11).  Last place in each instance, to boot.  You're right about the investment in players though, as they and St Louis both blow kisses to their fan base with big signings and so forth.  I'll mention also for Boston, though it has a nominally larger metro population than the Twin Cities, their being hemmed in on one side by the ocean means that the population isn't ideally distributed for supporting a sports team close to downtown.  If you measure by number of people within, say, 10 miles of the ballpark, Target Field might give Fenway a run for its money., and might be a closer comp than is generally assumed.  (TV market of course would be a differentiator.  Concentrated wealth of the nearby population might be another. But I digress.)   IMO much of Boston's edge in revenue is gotten the old fashioned way, as the old TV commercial phrased it: they earn it.

Anyway, that investment doesn't do much if the fan base doesn't feel like the kisses are being blown to them.  Dave St Peter and I think Jim Pohlad both in this offseason have remarked about poor attendance maybe putting constraints on next year's budget - talk about shooting yourself  in the foot!  Even if they re-sign Correa now there's still a bad taste in the mouth from the scolding, as though any signing is grudging.  Blown kisses should never be grudging. ?  Okay I'm pushing the metaphor too far.  But St Louis loves the Cardinals and the Cardinals return the favor, ditto Boston, and there are lessons to be learned from them.

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57 minutes ago, ashbury said:

Boston's been sub-.500 4 out of the past 10 seasons (and if I were cherry picking even more transparently I'd say 5 of the past 11).  Last place in each instance, to boot.  You're right about the investment in players though, as they and St Louis both blow kisses to their fan base with big signings and so forth.  I'll mention also for Boston, though it has a nominally larger metro population than the Twin Cities, their being hemmed in on one side by the ocean means that the population isn't ideally distributed for supporting a sports team close to downtown.  If you measure by number of people within, say, 10 miles of the ballpark, Target Field might give Fenway a run for its money., and might be a closer comp than is generally assumed.  (TV market of course would be a differentiator.  Concentrated wealth of the nearby population might be another. But I digress.)   IMO much of Boston's edge in revenue is gotten the old fashioned way, as the old TV commercial phrased it: they earn it.

Anyway, that investment doesn't do much if the fan base doesn't feel like the kisses are being blown to them.  Dave St Peter and I think Jim Pohlad both in this offseason have remarked about poor attendance maybe putting constraints on next year's budget - talk about shooting yourself  in the foot!  Even if they re-sign Correa now there's still a bad taste in the mouth from the scolding, as though any signing is grudging.  Blown kisses should never be grudging. ?  Okay I'm pushing the metaphor too far.  But St Louis loves the Cardinals and the Cardinals return the favor, ditto Boston, and there are lessons to be learned from them.

And Minnesota has been sub .500 how many seasons in the past 11 years? Just as a comparison.

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From a "Doc" to the "Doctor", I understand the misgivings of so much $ tied in to one player, Correa in this instance. I would be lying if such a deal didn't concern me, as well as the "potential" of spending that money elsewhere. I think one question to be asked is "would they spend that $ wisely? Now, that's not an indictment of the FO. I think they've made a ton of good moves. I also think they've missed the boat more than once and ended up slashing in the bay. So there is the factor of "can" they spend the $ better vs "will" they? Again, not starting up a debate or indictment.

CAN they sign Correa? Yes. I think the odds are above the 10-15% thoughts I've heard. I really like the variety of offers they have started with. Makes tremendous sense for both sides. It actually gives Correa and Boras a lot of power down the line in a couple of years. I think the proposal Nick laid out in a recent article is probably closer to a "get it done" scenario that i think Correa and Boras, frankly, would be FOOLISH not to grab a pen and sign immediatley, if not sooner! It has all the guaranteed $ they could possibly want and STILL gives them options. Personally, i think the reality of such a deal might be a bit of a compromise between the Twins initial offer and the proposed Nick offer. And later years, hus overall $ to the payroll decreases. But I'm getting a little off point here.

Even with the Correa signing, the team still has needs, but still has $ to spend for a couple more smart adds to the team. He doesn't completely handcuff the team. 

I really want Correa for a lot of reasons, and not just for what he brings to the field and the plate for the next, at least, 4-7yrs. I want his leadership. He already began running some drills and practices, reportedly, almost as a coach last year. He, reportedly, wants to take that a step forward in 2023. I love his experience, leadership, and drive. My goodness, he's opened his door to take Miranda under his wing to work with him and develop him this offseason.

I want Correa to sell jerseys and put fans in the seat for a team that's "going for it".

I want Correa to show the rest of the baseball world that Minnesota, and it's tremendous park and fans, is actually a destination place to be taken seriously.

I believe he can help do those things.

From what I've seen of Lewis at the ML level, ST games, and hilights from the minors, I have little doubt he'd be a good, solid, ML SS with some great offense, and the potential to be better. Even still, why pass on adding a great player when you can? I commented a year or so ago about Lewis taking all of his talent and potential and playing 3B, or the OF, and got pushback from others as that would be a "waste of his talent". And I never understood that thought process. Was it a waste for the Yankees to put Rodriguez at 3B? Was it a waste for the Angels to play Erstad at CF AND 1B while in his prime? Do the Dogers "waste" good players because they can plug them in at different positions?

Lewis could end up being one of the best 3B or 2B in all of MLB. That's not a "waste". How about, a year or so from now, maybe Lee takes over 3B, Correa at SS, Lewis at 2B, and Miranda back to 1B again, possibly sharing time with AK and Arraez, while ALL of these young talents could cover other positions as needed. And then, what about Julien? (Notice I haven't even mentioned Polanco)? Well, there are trade possibilities. Maybe Julien ends up at 2B and Lewis becomes a tremendous OF? And while I still believe Martin ends up in the OF, maybe he becomes a super-utility type who covers the OF as well as 3B/2B and emergency SS?

I think Lee and Lewis and Miranda are quality. I think Julien might be. I'm finally starting to believe Martin might be, though not as a SS. And I'm not even speaking about AK, Larnach, and Wallner right now as I'm just focused on the infield. There is a real chance, not an "inconceivable" one......CUE TO ASH FOR THE OBLIGATORY PRINCESS BRIDE GIF......that some point in 2023 and/or early 2024 that the Twins, position player wise, have a "how do we fit all of this talent on to one roster" situation.

Man, that would be an outstanding "problem" to have. 

I won't cry if Correa goes elsewhere. The sky won't fall. There's a lot of young talent already here and on the way. But you never pass up difference makers to your team, and your organization, if you can do so. But I believe if the Twins CAN/DO bring back Correa, he does a lot more than raising the floor of the infield. I think he changes the look, feel, product, and perception of the Twins.

All is not lost without him, by any means. I understand misgivings. I just think time and opportunity, as well as manipulaton of the roster and payroll, has presented the Twins with a special opportunity to make a statement. I'd hate to lose out on that opportunity. 

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If you have a chance to secure one of the elite shortstops in the game, you don’t turn him down in the hopes that Lewis sticks at short.  It’s not guaranteed.  Also, it’s unlikely that he’s anywhere near as good as Correa.

I don’t know how you can plan your future around a guy that has barely played in the last three years.  I see the potential, and I’m hopeful.  Seems like a great kid.  But, handing him the keys the shortstop position and just finding someone to keep the seat warm is a disaster waiting to happen.  That’s a losing move way more often than not

 

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12 hours ago, mike8791 said:

Spot on, Doc!  Unless Joe P has the clout and resolve to raise our 2023 payroll to minimum of $160MM, there is no way to justify spending $40 MM/yr. on CC.  Correa obviously is an all star but what did he add to the team in 2022?  Four more wins than the previous year.  Yes,  injuries were a major factor, but  2022 exposed the major holes in this team - a cleanup hitter who could drive in runs, a catcher who could hit, an excess of LH -hitting, injury-prone OFers, only one true late-inning stalwart reliever.  As you said, it makes no sense to wait on Correa to eventually sign with a major market team, while other quality FAs are being signed.  This is exactly what happened to the Twins last year when savvier orgs, realizing an impending shutdown as probable, scooped up the best FAs -  leaving Falvine with leftovers like Archer.

Adding to my puzzlement over this apparent fixation with Correa is the fact that we acquired a perfectly acceptable SS in Farmer, with a top prospect, Lewis, potentially available in the second half of the season.  Why trade for Farmer(and lose Urshela) if he is used as a utility player?  Seems to me, if this is the case, the FO has started the offseason with a net loss to an already iffy lineup.

The smart move is filling the gaps with upgrades at DH, RF, and C.  How would Bell, Hanigan, and Contreras look in the lineup?  Maybe there is even room to add a proven late-inning reliever to bolster the team's ability to hold on in one run games.  Trade Kepler, one of our excess middle infielders, and a top 10 pitching prospect, and a proven starter by trade is possible(Lopez). I sure like this scenario better than the single addition of CC.

If the Twins want to win, they need to bump the payroll from last year’s 142 MM to 160 - 170MM.

With Twins apparently ready to give Correa ~ 40MM in the first few years, they woud be fools if they were not prepared to get to 160-170MM and complete the rebuild. Kepler should be traded to gain 8-9MM. They need enough money for Rodon, Brantley, Haniger and Christian Vazquez. Then we will have a good offense and a bright future while still spending about 110MM less then the Dodgers and Yankees. Correa will be a wonderful player to build around. His gun arm saves tons of base hits and turns them to outs. Forgetn the SABR stats, Correa is a generational player right there with Buxton but healthier.

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4 hours ago, ashbury said:

Boston's been sub-.500 4 out of the past 10 seasons (and if I were cherry picking even more transparently I'd say 5 of the past 11).  Last place in each instance, to boot.  You're right about the investment in players though, as they and St Louis both blow kisses to their fan base with big signings and so forth.  I'll mention also for Boston, though it has a nominally larger metro population than the Twin Cities, their being hemmed in on one side by the ocean means that the population isn't ideally distributed for supporting a sports team close to downtown.  If you measure by number of people within, say, 10 miles of the ballpark, Target Field might give Fenway a run for its money., and might be a closer comp than is generally assumed.  (TV market of course would be a differentiator.  Concentrated wealth of the nearby population might be another. But I digress.)   IMO much of Boston's edge in revenue is gotten the old fashioned way, as the old TV commercial phrased it: they earn it.

Anyway, that investment doesn't do much if the fan base doesn't feel like the kisses are being blown to them.  Dave St Peter and I think Jim Pohlad both in this offseason have remarked about poor attendance maybe putting constraints on next year's budget - talk about shooting yourself  in the foot!  Even if they re-sign Correa now there's still a bad taste in the mouth from the scolding, as though any signing is grudging.  Blown kisses should never be grudging. ?  Okay I'm pushing the metaphor too far.  But St Louis loves the Cardinals and the Cardinals return the favor, ditto Boston, and there are lessons to be learned from them.

This. This. This. This. This. This.

 

 

 

 

Did I say This?

 

 

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A comment that's a bit tangential: I think it's inaccurate to compare Minnesota to St. Louis or Boston. St. Louis has always been a baseball-first sports town. No NBA for 55 years and never a glimmer of interest in another franchise during that time. Two NFL teams have come and gone, and again no glimmer of interest in another franchise. They do support the Blues OK but major league baseball is deeply ingrained in the culture there and has been for close to 150 years. And it's essentially the same in New England with the Red Sox. While the Twins are certainly part of the sports culture in Minnesota it's nowhere close to the same thing as in St. Louis or Boston.

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16 hours ago, ashbury said:

Boston's been sub-.500 4 out of the past 10 seasons (and if I were cherry picking even more transparently I'd say 5 of the past 11).  Last place in each instance, to boot.  You're right about the investment in players though, as they and St Louis both blow kisses to their fan base with big signings and so forth.  I'll mention also for Boston, though it has a nominally larger metro population than the Twin Cities, their being hemmed in on one side by the ocean means that the population isn't ideally distributed for supporting a sports team close to downtown.  If you measure by number of people within, say, 10 miles of the ballpark, Target Field might give Fenway a run for its money., and might be a closer comp than is generally assumed.  (TV market of course would be a differentiator.  Concentrated wealth of the nearby population might be another. But I digress.)   IMO much of Boston's edge in revenue is gotten the old fashioned way, as the old TV commercial phrased it: they earn it.

Anyway, that investment doesn't do much if the fan base doesn't feel like the kisses are being blown to them.  Dave St Peter and I think Jim Pohlad both in this offseason have remarked about poor attendance maybe putting constraints on next year's budget - talk about shooting yourself  in the foot!  Even if they re-sign Correa now there's still a bad taste in the mouth from the scolding, as though any signing is grudging.  Blown kisses should never be grudging. ?  Okay I'm pushing the metaphor too far.  But St Louis loves the Cardinals and the Cardinals return the favor, ditto Boston, and there are lessons to be learned from them.

And Minnesota was sub .500 the past 7 out of 11, st. Louis had zero sub .500 seasons the past 11 seasons, so I’d say what I said earlier is true … both Boston and St. Louis win more than they lose, giving their fanbase more hope and willingness, and you don’t think it’s a correlation to attendance? You also agreed that those teams do more by way of signing the big names more often. So, what exactly is in your 5 yr plan to woo fans into spending money to come to games in Minnesota … continue to wait on prospects, not spend on a big name SS, have another 4 seasons of sub .500 seasons to woo the fans back to the stadium? After buying a stadium in 2010 on the promise that that would afford them the ability to win isn’t winning over fans when the winning isn’t there. Seems like we are in a vicious cycle here with no end in sight. Maybe it’s time for the owner and the FO to put their money where their mouths are to start building back the trust they’ve lost in the promises they haven’t kept. Granted, I’m still here following the team, but I’m not spending the money I used and am able to, on these broken promises. For me, signing Correa would be a huge step in the right direction. Going with Farmer and the hope of Lewis won’t instill much of anything and would be a continued slap and not a kiss.

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23 hours ago, MABB1959 said:

If the Twins don’t spend on players like Correa by focusing on the negatives, then they might as well hang it up for good.   We don’t need to be a small or mid market team.  If they spend/invest they can get there.  Hard to make money if you don’t invest.   Geez I bet jersey sales are down since we don’t have a marquee player.  Ticket sales won’t go up,  Not sure how TV revenue works.  I don’t think the Pohlad’s have ever taken a loss but  they haven’t come close to delivering what they promised when they got the new stadium.  In fact it seems like they did better in the Metrodome.  We at least have memories of really good players and a stable team.  The only players that stick around more than a few years are substandard.  The worst part is we have had the same discussions at the end of every season since have been at Target field.  It is too sad.  

The incremental money comes from cable television.  The Twins are last in that revenue stream among the markets that have all four major sports.  And it's not even close.  You can build all the stadiums and sell all the jerseys you want but until you increase the cable revenue you're going nowhere fast.  And let's be honest, for that to happen it's gonna come out of YOUR pocket.  Interested?

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