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Terry Ryan on KFAN


John Bonnes
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Terry Ryan was interviewed on Thursday by Paul Allen and dropped some interesting tidbits:

 

Re: Free agency pitching

 

"If we're going to do anything here and succeed in the near and long long-term Paul, it's probably no going to be via free agency. It's going to be drafting and international acquisitions and trades and so forth. Very rarely do you end up succeeding because of free agency.

 

Now when you get to a point where you're very competitive and you're looking World Series area, then you go out and you might end up doing something of that nature. But most clubs, and we're one of them, you're not going to probably get it done via the free agency route. You can certainly compliment your roster. And there will be people out there we'll be aggressively pursuing. There's no doubt we need to go that path on occasion.

 

But for long-term success, we're going to have to have the Sanos and the Rosarios and the Alex Meyers and Trevor Mays and those types of guys come through. And then all of a sudden you have the opportunity to add a free agent; then you go do it."

 

It sure sounds to me like we shouldn't expect any big pitching signings this offseason. However, I was excited that "international acquisitions" sprung to his mind as a way to improve the roster.

 

A couple of other notes;

  1. He says Sano isn't "roster eligible" for another year and a half, which is a year later than I thought.
  2. He claims Sano isn't read defensively more than offensively.
  3. A Gardenhire decision will come down "very close to after the season."
  4. He didn't tip his hand on Gardy. He said he was a big fan of his, but he didn't say that meant he was safe.
  5. Also said he didn't think Ron Gardenhire would step away on his own.
  6. There are major league players that he said didn't have the year he was hoping and he wants to get back on track.
  7. Has a wait-and-see approach on Mauer and wants Mauer's input.

 

Here it is if you would like to listen to it. The interview starts at the 32 minute mark.

 

http://www.kfan.com/media/podcast-paul-allen-kfan-fm-1003-KFAN_PADubay/919-hr3-limegroverterry-ryan-23738179/

Edited by John Bonnes
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Good grief. He has got to go. His aversion to FA is so far out of line that unless the stars align and prospects turn into stars, he will never have a legit contending team. Maybe the international thing is a hint toward Tanaka, but I can't believe it until it happens given his history. He is depressing to listen to when he talks about baseball.

 

I was excited to see football start. Now the Vikings suck and will be lucky to win a game all season and now I'm looking forward to spring training again.

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"He says Sano isn't "roster eligible" for another year and a half, which is a year later than I thought."

I'm thinking he means "has to be placed on the 40 man" or he could go in the rule five. He is eligible to be on the roster right now it's just not required so they are saving a 40 man spot for Clete and company.

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"If we're going to do anything here and succeed in the near and long long-term Paul, it's probably no going to be via free agency. It's going to be drafting and international acquisitions and trades and so forth. Very rarely do you end up succeeding because of free agency.

 

This quote by Ryan, I believe this is true. You can find teams that went out, spent massively in the free agent market and had successful years. Rarely if ever, did the success last much beyond a year or 2. Usually if it did, there was a strong home grown nuculeus to build around. I think that is what Ryan is saying and I agree with this approach. I do expect some spending in the free agent market this winter, and I hope it is an impact pitcher. Since, including international free agents, there probably isn't more than 2 or 3 impact (No 1 or 2 starters) starters I don't know how likely my hope is.

Edited by Jim H
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I love it when the defenders (and the FO) give their spiel dismissing Free Agents. They speak as if free agents are the only players to be added to a roster to improve results. Everyone else is talking about adding less than a handful of them.

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Guest USAFChief
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I have a vague sense of not liking, or agreeing with, what Ryan had to say.

 

But it's hard to form much of an opinion, because it's hard for me to understand just what the heck he's saying.

 

"We're not going to use free agency to get better. Except maybe when we get better, then we'll use free agency to get better. Or maybe not. But we're not going to 'get it done' via free agency. Except we need to make the roster better, so we'll be aggressively pursuing free agents. There's no doubt we need to do that. But long term, we can't get better through free agency, but we might."

 

His quote would fit right in at a presidential debate.

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Sigh

Every time Ryan opens his mouth, the marketing department of the Twins must shudder. Doesn't he get that his current roster is an embarrassment?!?

 

And you know what really chaps my hide?

Why isn't the media talking about firing Ryan? Why is he untouchable?

The first question he should be asked is "Why is Gardy on the Hot Seat and Not You?"

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I have a vague sense of not liking, or agreeing with, what Ryan had to say.

 

But it's hard to form much of an opinion, because it's hard for me to understand just what the heck he's saying.

 

"We're not going to use free agency to get better. Except maybe when we get better, then we'll use free agency to get better. Or maybe not. But we're not going to 'get it done' via free agency. Except we need to make the roster better, so we'll be aggressively pursuing free agents. There's no doubt we need to do that. But long term, we can't get better through free agency, but we might."

 

His quote would fit right in at a presidential debate.

 

I really liked this post, except for when I didn't.

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I have a vague sense of not liking, or agreeing with, what Ryan had to say.

 

But it's hard to form much of an opinion, because it's hard for me to understand just what the heck he's saying.

 

"We're not going to use free agency to get better. Except maybe when we get better, then we'll use free agency to get better. Or maybe not. But we're not going to 'get it done' via free agency. Except we need to make the roster better, so we'll be aggressively pursuing free agents. There's no doubt we need to do that. But long term, we can't get better through free agency, but we might."

 

His quote would fit right in at a presidential debate.

 

this. But this confusing claptrap says it all to me: there is no clear plan for how to utilize the new revenues. This team still always says they will be used to "retain", not add. Contradictions like this speak to a higher likelihood of the pessimistic predictions coming true.

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Guest USAFChief
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I really liked this post, except for when I didn't.

Well, I covered the known knowns, and the known unknowns, but I didn't consider the unknown unknowns, so I can understand your ambivalance.

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The world of being GM is not a binary system. What you do at one moment might no be what you are doing later. It is not always do this or not do this.

 

No, but many executives have a code or system for how they do things. We see that all across sports - some guys are very aggressive. Some guys very passive. Some prefer veterans, some prospects.

 

The point is, we've seen an awful lot of Ryan and while there may be some argument to be made that he's never been in precisely this situation (an argument I don't buy into in any way whatsoever), there is plenty of very strong supporting evidence to suggest that your "well you never know" argument isn't really accurate.

 

We know a lot about Ryan. We know a lot about what he looks for, how he likes to build his teams, and how he feels about contracts. The evidence isn't perfect, but it's really, really powerful. You're right that you never know and we may be in for some fantastic pleasant surprises. However, I'm not a real firm believer in the idea that you can teach an old baseball guy new tricks. Or any "old school" sports guys. I think this team has to look for some fresh perspectives and that is going to become very obvious in the next few years.

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No, but many executives have a code or system for how they do things. We see that all across sports - some guys are very aggressive. Some guys very passive. Some prefer veterans, some prospects.

 

The point is, we've seen an awful lot of Ryan and while there may be some argument to be made that he's never been in precisely this situation (an argument I don't buy into in any way whatsoever), there is plenty of very strong supporting evidence to suggest that your "well you never know" argument isn't really accurate.

 

We know a lot about Ryan. We know a lot about what he looks for, how he likes to build his teams, and how he feels about contracts. The evidence isn't perfect, but it's really, really powerful. You're right that you never know and we may be in for some fantastic pleasant surprises. However, I'm not a real firm believer in the idea that you can teach an old baseball guy new tricks. Or any "old school" sports guys. I think this team has to look for some fresh perspectives and that is going to become very obvious in the next few years.

 

So you think once you turn a certain age you can't learn new things? Talk about insulting a whole class of people.

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So you think once you turn a certain age you can't learn new things? Talk about insulting a whole class of people.

 

This seems to be a gross over-generalization of Levi's point. I know you two disagree on a few things, but this smells like it is meant to attack rather then address a point, by deliberately misrepresenting him.

 

Don't do that.

 

To better define the point being made...

1. It seems all of us, even Ryan, can agree that eventually it might make sense to pay for free agents.

2. But his comments certainly seem to imply that expectations for this offseason should be tempered.

 

To me, it suggests we shouldn't expect to see him be any more aggressive than he was last offseason, when the Twins were in a similar (maybe even slightly better) position. This year, they spent $8.5M on Pelfrey and Correia. It suggests that we should not expect too much more than that - maybe $10M or so - on a couple of mid-level free agent pitching acquisitions, like a guy coming back from injury and an inning-eater.

 

Am I being too pessimistic?

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"If we're going to do anything here and succeed in the near and long long-term Paul' date=' [u']it's probably no going to be via free agency[/u]. It's going to be drafting and international acquisitions and trades and so forth. Very rarely do you end up succeeding because of free agency.

 

Is anyone really surprised at this??!!!!!! Every time I read a post here on TD that says that the Twins have X amount of dollars to spend and should go after this free agent and that free agent I'm thinking that they're %$@#% dreaming!!! That’s not the Twins way. Terry Ryan will pick up an innings eater and a couple of projects this winter and that’s it.

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So you think once you turn a certain age you can't learn new things? Talk about insulting a whole class of people.

 

It doesn't matter if it's insulting. It matters if it's accurate.

 

TR sounds like my crazy uncle who talks about how cheap kit kat bars were back in the day. He's a dinosaur and every interview he does makes it more clear he's overmatched.

Edited by launchingthrees
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"We're not going to use free agency to get better. Except maybe when we get better, then we'll use free agency to get better. Or maybe not. But we're not going to 'get it done' via free agency. Except we need to make the roster better, so we'll be aggressively pursuing free agents. There's no doubt we need to do that. But long term, we can't get better through free agency, but we might."

 

Is this an actual quote from the interview? I despise listening to podcasts (sorry) and interviews plus the sound on the computer drives my dog absolutely bananas.

 

When i first read Chief's post, I thought he was being satirical. Did Terry Ryan actually make the statements quoted above?

 

Thanks.

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Guest USAFChief
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Is this an actual quote from the interview? I despise listening to podcasts (sorry) and interviews plus the sound on the computer drives my dog absolutely bananas.

 

When i first read Chief's post, I thought he was being satirical. Did Terry Ryan actually make the statements quoted above?

 

Thanks.

 

I took some liberties with paraphrasing.

 

Maybe.

 

You can read the actual quote farther up the thread.

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I took some liberties with paraphrasing.

 

Maybe.

 

You can read the actual quote farther up the thread.

 

Thank you. I take it that the quote in John's original post is accurate.

 

(I thought I was losing my mind there for a minute -- although some would say it was gone long ago.)

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This seems to be a gross over-generalization of Levi's point. I know you two disagree on a few things, but this smells like it is meant to attack rather then address a point, by deliberately misrepresenting him.

 

Don't do that.

 

To better define the point being made...

1. It seems all of us, even Ryan, can agree that eventually it might make sense to pay for free agents.

2. But his comments certainly seem to imply that expectations for this offseason should be tempered.

 

To me, it suggests we shouldn't expect to see him be any more aggressive than he was last offseason, when the Twins were in a similar (maybe even slightly better) position. This year, they spent $8.5M on Pelfrey and Correia. It suggests that we should not expect too much more than that - maybe $10M or so - on a couple of mid-level free agent pitching acquisitions, like a guy coming back from injury and an inning-eater.

 

Am I being too pessimistic?

 

How can one overgeneralize a generalized statement? The critique is that he is old school. That is an aged based complaint. The complaint is based on what, one off season where he had payroll flexibility? He signed 2 bargain basement free agent pitchers. Judging from the ongoing threads judging last year's free agent pitching his assessments by whatever method worked. He did sign the wrong former Skeeter pitcher to a minor league contract, (Mickey Callaway deserves a coach of the year honor) so Ryan's team didn't do all great work is assessing the talent that was out there. What methods do they use to determine what players to sign? Considering that some of the free agents available had decent years the year before they had to have done some form of projecting. The fans do not know much what goes into the decision making process. So how can you label it old school other than that Ryan is old? True, he doesn't talk metrics. He doesn't talk much specifics on anything that would give you a clue what he thinks.

Ryan works more towards long term than short term. This year should be a kick in the head to remind him that free agents plug short term gaps, too.

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Despite the prospects the Twins are expecting to start arriving in 2014, Ryan sounds like he's going to punt the season again. The Twins really have no one to trade of significant value and Ryan isn't going to sign any major pieces in free agency.

 

If the Twins are really building something special in the next couple years like they want us to believe, then maybe they should spend some of their burgeoning cash pile to bring in a good pitcher on a multi-year deal that can help not only in 2014 but also onward after that. Worst case scenario, the prospects all flame out and the Twins are still a marginally better team than 2013. There's a possibility that they could always flip said pitcher in a trade anyway.

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My point was very clearly limited to old school sports guys. Baseball, in particular, has a very rigid old school/new school divide and I think a guy like Ryan has a hard time keeping up with trends much less bucking trends and forging new ground. It's not some kind of knock on old people, it's a knock on rigidity and some of the inflexible thinking we see in baseball quite often.

 

The Twins under Ryan have been as rigid as any. Sometimes tht pays off and sometimes it severely limits your options. I think we've crossed that bridge into "too limiting" far more than I feel comfortable with.

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My point was very clearly limited to old school sports guys. Baseball, in particular, has a very rigid old school/new school divide

 

And there's a whole show on MLB Network based off that exact premise. Reynolds and Kenny facing off.

 

On top of that, some people take a lot of pride in being 'old school', for whatever reason...or at least unless that phrase is used in a supposed negative manner then all of a sudden it's insulting.

 

I'm also reminded of a very popular phrase, 'You can't teach an old dog new tricks'. It's been around, forever...

 

Anyway, back on topic.

Edited by ThePuck
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