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    Brock Beauchamp

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Showing content with the highest reputation since 08/03/2020 in Blog Comments

  1. I don’t think of several of these guys as Twins ‘left fielders’. Turns out, for good reason. I went back and checked...Shane Mack and Larry Hisle, neither put in more than one season where they played LF in even half of the games. They both moved all over the outfield (they both had big-time arm-strength issues)...and put in time at DH. Meanwhile, Bostock played considerably more CF and RF than LF for the Twins. So, to me it comes down to Allison, Rosario, and Gladden (Stewart was good for 2 seasons) Bob Allison was pretty clearly the best player in this list, offensively and defensively. Gladden gets consideration for the 800+ OPS across two WS wins. He’d be my number 2.
    6 points
  2. 129 AB .. 58 SO .. .163 BA .. Average fielder and below average speed on the base paths.. I swear to god, if Sano shortened his swing and tried to hit line drives he would end up hitting 40 balls over the fence by accident and strike out significant less ..
    6 points
  3. My opinions can basically be boiled down to "does this rule change speed up the game and/or increase action?" If yes, I'm probably in favor of it. If no, I'm probably against it. The easiest rule to change that will make the game better without impacting the on-field strategy/play at all is "the batter cannot step out of the box during a plate appearance". If that's too much, then eliminate the rule where the pitcher cannot pitch if the batter isn't in the box (basically, force the batter to be ready and in the box at all times). And then actually enforce the pitch clock, for god's sake. Those are rules that have zero impact on game theory/strategy (though players will surely try to claim otherwise) but will keep the game flow accelerated and fans more engaged. Because while three true outcomes can be boring, what really drags down a baseball game is watching the batter and pitcher take 25 second breathers between every. single. pitch.
    6 points
  4. Pretty good assessment after the first paragraph. As for the first paragraph.......hmm, how to be polite. As good as Buxton is, yes, when healthy, he is not on the same planet as Rod Carew if you want to go into Twins history. Not only did Rod have the tools, he used them. He could turn a walk into a run better than anyone in the game. Buxton refuses to use his speed to the degree he not only could, but should, anywhere but in the field. He will not bunt, and steals sparingly (as in he could steal 3rd and even home far more often). In his own words, he is "looking to drive the ball", not worry about his average, even though a higher average would put him on base more, putting him in a position to do more with his speed. His athleticism may or may not be unmatched, but his production is far from unparalleled (no, production is not on a per game basis, it is season to season). You have to be on the field to produce; no one has yet to produce from the trainers room. Don't get me wrong; as I said, a good assessment from the 2nd paragraph down, but he has started more than 88 games only once in his career and until he does consistently, year in and year out, the jury will remain out. Doesn't mean I wouldn't sign him, but not for the money he thinks he is worth. Not yet, anyway.
    5 points
  5. Damn, this is some outstanding work. Well done.
    5 points
  6. My question's are these - Who are the next 6 foundational players? All 6 of these were products of the Terry Ryan era. Does Falvey even have the next 6 in the system? Are any of the current 6 going to be a part of the next 6? I can't believe our window is already closed and we're talking about this. Dammit. I do still think Berrios and Buxton can and should be a part of the next 6. Can we sign them? Do we want to sign them? I have lots of questions.
    5 points
  7. I agree with most of this, except that I believe the chance of Cruz being traded is close to 100%. No matter if the return is good or not, he'll almost surely be moved. There aren't many teams that need a DH but literally every single playoff team wants Cruz on their roster, if only for pinch-hitting duty.
    5 points
  8. I'm hearing this opinion a lot on the boards, but what we're hearing now is that it wasn't the guaranteed money that was the sticking point on the extension, it was something related to the structure of the incentives. So from a reasonableness perspective, the issue is apparently not the guaranteed money at all. but never let the truth get in the way of calling the Pohlad Family cheap...
    4 points
  9. I agree with a lot here but I'm not sure why so many people minimize Berríos' skill level right now. No, he's not an ace, at least not by my personal definition, but it's almost impossible to classify him lower than a good #2 right now. His ERA rank out of American League qualifying pitchers the past three seasons: 8, 13, 11. HIs ERA+ over the past three seasons: 119. That's pretty clearly a guy who, if he's maybe just a click below a traditional ace, is clearly in that second tier of starting pitchers.
    4 points
  10. While I'm not ready for a rebuild, these are the types of heavy returns which the Twins would need to have if they choose to start over. I'm also of the mind to push San Diego for C. J. Abrams.
    4 points
  11. I say the Twins take a chance and actually give us the ANSWER to this question. Jettison/trade Pineda and Happ and put Barnes and Winder in the rotation with Berrios, Maeda and Ober. Dobnak and Thorpe are your AAA depth when they come back from injury. Move on from Robles (trade), Colome (trade or DFA) and Theilbar or Coloumbe (trade) and call up Hamilton, Vazquez and Cano. Pitch the starters every 5th day and use the relievers like real relievers in 6th and 7th inning situations. When inevitable 10 day IL stints occur, hope that one or more of the presently injured or AA guys like Sands, Duran, Caterino or Moran can fill in. Let's be Darwinian - may be the best guys win! My guess is that Winder will show enough to be penciled into the 2022 rotation along with Ober, but Barnes will be more of a 6th starter/long man/ AAAA guy. In the bullpen, Hamilton and Cano will be middle relief arms next year and Vasquez will be another long man/AAAA guy. But what do I know? Let's settle this in the arena!
    4 points
  12. Harmon Killebrew. He was the everyday LF from’62-64. Played in 470 games as Twins starting LF. Allison started 472. Harmon averaged 47 hr’s as LF. Of those listed, only Rosario and Allison played more LF.
    4 points
  13. His ability to do what? Strikeout? He's hitting .163 and striking out about 50% of the time. If the guy could actually hit around .225 or so, things would be much different. Right now, he's nearly an automatic out with an occasional homerun.
    4 points
  14. 1] Move the 2B extra inning runner rule to the 12th inning. 2] Enforce a 20 second pitch clock. I can go along with 15 seconds with no-one on base. But you also have to enforce the batters staying in the box as well or you've done nothing. Give the batter 5 seconds to step out and adjust. Your fault if you didn't put enough pine tar on your bat before you stepped in. 3] Eliminate the 3 batter rule. I think it's been proven to have no positive effect. 4] Shifts are fine. Extreme shifts are just boring! Everyone should be required to have TWO players on the dirt on either side of 2B. You can cheat all the way to 2B, but not 3 on any one side. 5] DH in both leagues. It's time. And I think even those who aren't crazy about the DH realize it's time for uniformity. 6] A 27 man roster with a cap on 13 pitchers. Similar to 2020. The game has changed. It's time to change with the times. Not everyone has their AAA club across town or a couple hours away. There are still minor injuries that happen but don't warrant an IL stint. Platoons and situational baseball has changed. An extra bench player to provide PH, PR and depth options makes too much sense in today's game. 7] Eliminate the STUPID September limited roster roster promotion rule. This was done as a ridiculous "integrity of the game" idea that losing teams, out of contention, wouldn't load their lineup with prospects against a team still playing for a post season spot. How in hell is a bad team that much worse auditioning a player or two at the end of the season? Further, how about a playoff team that wants to audition a player or two for the future and maybe rest a couple guys getting ready for the playoffs to be ready for optomim performance? Talk about cutting off your nose to spite your face! Maybe I'm just being an experienced and opinionated jerk, but I think all of these points are logical, needed, and easy, and cheap, to implement. And they ALL improve the game. A pair of final considerations: A] I am not against robot umpires. But you go down a rabbit hole to milb, college baseball, etc. It may happen. And that's fine. But I'd still rather see education, more review and grading and control. MLB and the players union have more control than the umpire union does. I'd rather start with better evaluation and promotion-demotion. B] This one is just tongue in cheek and silly and having a bit of an old school love, but since there are so many uniform rules in all sports already, how about some rule where pants have to be so many inches above the shoe, or below the knee? LOL! I know it sounds stupid, but there is still something fun about actually seeing the traditional look of the socks. Accept everything posted and give me all the crap you want to about the uniforms.
    4 points
  15. Brock Beauchamp

    On Narrative

    How does this blog entry not have comments? This is really a fantastic take and nails exactly how I feel about this team. I'm frustrated as hell by the Twins' play since starting the season 5-2 but people are scapegoating way too fast and way too readily without a lot of evidence to support these takes. The point I keep hammering at is "how do you explain a team of veterans losing 10% of their OPS in the last third of the game?" These aren't young players being "tainted" by a coaching staff or clubhouse cancer. These are guys with thousands of PAs each, guys who have been in the league 5+ years, guys who never had this problem until roughly five minutes ago. The Twins are unlucky, shades of bad (seemingly different every night), and unlucky. Josh Donaldson, one of the best third basemen of this generation, had three errors in two nights. To that I say "WTF" and there are so many instances of that kind of completely nonsensical situation in the Twins 2021 season.
    4 points
  16. SS factory? Who could Mike be talking about? It couldn't be our Twins? To my knowledge they haven't produced a bona fide SS since Zoilo Versalles. Prospects usually don't pan out and leave or move to a different position. Polanco became an all star because of his bat not his glove. He's a 2B but was thrust at SS when we traded Escobar. It seems that any good SS we've had, we gotten thru trade. Lewis is a good SS but will he stay there? Why can't we produce our own SS, Mike? It's a question that needs to be asked. Thank you Mike for bringing this to our attention.
    4 points
  17. Mike, tremendous post! And really, despite endless OP's before on the front page, I'd like to see this one moved there. I LOVE Eddie, even though he has made me pull my hair out many times or made me take an extra sip or two from my beverage of choice at times. I absolutely think he is a better player than given credit for at times. Like you, I've always chafed when some argue his RBI production and dismiss it as being in a good lineup and in a good spot. You still have to produce, right? And Eddie has, no doubt! The problem is, with all due respect and love for Eddie, is there someone knocking on the door who could do it as well or better who is younger and cheaper? We can compare Eddie and Max all day. Max is better defensively overall, younger, might have a higher ceiling, and might be better and more productive than he has been lower in the order instead of hitting #1. Also, it's really, really hard to look at the potential of Kirilloff, maybe Larnach, and NOT see better overall hitters who might not have the same "flair" but who are better overall "hitters". Power is awesome. Production is most important. Defense is really nice. But sometimes a younger player has as much or more ability to do all of that and maybe more. We can't lose Eddie and Cruz in the same year. But we have, I think, at least one ready replacement for Eddie. And I think we are going to be very OK with our #1 option there. We might even be better, overall, very soon. Kirilloff is going to be a stud!
    4 points
  18. Why is requesting a "subtle yet very significant update that honors and reflects the team’s players and its fans from different backgrounds" a false sense of need? Inclusion is a very real need. As I read Crutchfield's statements, he is using that as an opportunity for a discussion on what that looks like, not a condemnation on the existing logo. Nobody said that the logo was offensive. Crutchfield never mentioned being offended about the logo or the logo itself being offensive. In fact, he said that he has "always loved Ray Barton’s original ‘Minnie and Paul’ logo design" in his statement. He provided updated version of the logo he provided on his Facebook page. In addition to being a seamless transition, the Black person on the St. Paul side not only provides a level of diversity to the logo, but it could also serve to honor Roy Campanella who became the first African-American to play in the American Association when he joined the Saints in 1948. There is certainly room for both in this game. The sport honors Jackie Robinson one day a year by having every player wearing 42 or black and white jerseys. Some teams choose to use Negro League uniforms on turn-back-the-clock days. This is imagery. You can have both discussions about how images are perceived AND work toward actionable changes. Again, no one said the logo was offensive. Still, we know that former owner Calvin Griffith said 'I'll tell you why we came to Minnesota. It was when I found out you only had 15,000 blacks here. Black people don't go to ball games" and while he was making that decision, he was likely deciding on logos and branding. The 1961 designed logo could have been a reflection of that mindset -- or it could have just been an misguided reflection of the state's demographics at that time. Either way, it does not take much for an organization to reflect on that past and that future. Baseball's audience is overwhelmingly white. According to Bloomberg in 2019, only 9% of the television-viewing audience is black. I cite James Clear's Atomic Habits a lot because of the main points he makes in his book is that small changes can have significant impacts later on. If making small change to the logo could help improve the perception of the organization to more people, it would be foolish not to take it into consideration. There is A LOT more that needs to be done to grow the game in that regard, to be sure, but making small strides when possible should be on the table. It may seem like a minor thing to us, but the impact could be felt down the road. Finally, just to reiterate, there are many reasons to consider making changes to a logo but let's be clear here and understand that no one is outright offended by this logo. That is not a part of the conversation.
    4 points
  19. Buxton's presence will not be missed on a nightly basis because he's never played on a nightly basis. Speed first outfielders with a long history of injury issues don't suddenly become more healthy in their 30's. He's not going to be consistently on the field. Frankly I think the Twins offer to him was more than I would've offered. I'd do a shorter higher AAV deal though.
    3 points
  20. Byron Buxton is the reason to go watch a game, he is worth the price of admission. Whether it is running down a ball in the outfield or hitting a triple or stealing a base. He can change the game on both sides of the ball, we don't or probably won't ever have that type of talent again. Pay him and pray he stays healthy for 120 games. Plus I don't think we will get a great offer after this year.
    3 points
  21. The Twins have already made an overly generous offer. He is a career .247 hitter and his yearly war is just 3.0. They offered him more than the Yanks gave Hicks. Berríos apparently wants $25M per year. Was nothing learned from the Mauer contract?
    3 points
  22. I agree that Buxton is good. However he is not great. He is a career, yes did you see that, career ..247 hitter. Don't even think of putting in with Carew and Puckett. Buxton was flailing away at the plate not too unlike Sano just very recently. I like him and hope he stays but he hasn't proven much of anything yet except how to miss 63% of his teams games the past 4 years. Don't compare to Donaldson big contract. Yes he's older and has had some injuries but he has a very good and productive background. Buxton does not. Find a way to sign him but let's be reasonable and realistic.
    3 points
  23. He is surely the fastest player we have ever had and he is certainly in the top 3 of all time centerfielders along with Kirby and Hunter...BUT, it was not that long ago that Buck couldn't consistently get hits, where he struck out and popped up. While it's true he has turned a corner, we can't possibly know his true value. or any players true value, unless they can play well at this level for a full season. This is not the year for Buck to be demanding a lot of money. The reason we paid JD what we did was because we were supposed to win our division and get to the playoffs in 2021. Don't get me wrong, it killed me to see Cruz go and it would kill me to see Buck go and be Superman for the competition...but at this point, I think we have all gotten accustomed to not having him our team because he hasn't been around. I agree that the ownership should not start tearing down what they only just built, but things did not work out like they planned this season. Buck aside, I think this team was woefully mismanaged by Rocco and his gang. From poor conditioning and injuries to horrible pitching decisions...leave them in too long, taken them out too soon, bring in the wrong reliever and then keep him in until the game is lost, etc, etc. Sano? really? Zero baseball IQ. There is plenty of blame to go around, but it started at the top. There is way too much talent on this team for them to be where they are...that is a team that is mismanaged.
    3 points
  24. As a long time forum resident/owner, I've lost track of how many Joe Bensons there have been over the past 20 years (ie. players that were released to great internet outrage, only to amount to absolutely nothing in MLB, if they ever even got there).
    3 points
  25. Wow, great work. Goes to show that the vast majority of the time, waiver moves - whether pick ups or losing players - rarely matter in the grand scheme. We - myself included - sometimes get a little irritated when the Twins drop someone like a Chalmers or Blankenhorn, but this high suggests that doing so will almost never have any consequences despite their perceived upside.
    3 points
  26. Either trade would be pretty good...even though I'm not overly eager to trade Berrios/Rogers. As a Twins fan #1 and a Dodgers fan #2 I would be O.K. with the Dodgers deal. Berrios is durable and dependable. May is coming back from Tommy John surgery. And Rogers gives the Dodgers a dependable LH arm out of the bullpen who could possibly close in 2022. However, even though the trade adds up in San Diego's favor, I like Hassell and Weathers. THAT would be a trade that (I can't believe I'm saying this) would be HAPPY with. Weathers is just 21. Hassell is just 19. These are guys you can build around for years. The other two are good filler with "potential." I'd make this trade.
    3 points
  27. Rogers’ fate should be tied to the fates of Berríos and Buxton. If one goes, all three should go. Maximize your return or try to compete in 2022.
    3 points
  28. I'm hoping the plan is a re-tool, but still with some major changes. You've laid the basic premise out nicely Mike8791. I'm going to go with the easy stuff first: Cut bait on Sano. Either move him at the trade deadline for a bag of baseballs (for salary relief) or simply buy him out for $2.75 million at seasons end and be done with him. Look for takers on Max Kepler. I don't think Max will ever get back to his 2019 form. I wonder how much of a mirage that was for a LOT of our players. But he is still a very good defensive RF'er. He has value and should be moved to a team looking for OF help. I would leave our catching personnel alone. Jeffers and Rortvedt are struggling offensively but should improve. Garver can be used as a catcher/1B/DH type of bat. I'm not averse to moving Donaldson for the right package. Arraez can hold down 3B and/or Miranda. Cruz COULD be dealt for the right package but I'd be O.K. if we kept him. It depends what teams would be willing to part with. I'd be happy to keep Nellie for another year. With Donaldson, Sano and Kepler gone that would be about $40-$45 million freed up. Some of that would be used to re-sign Berrios and Buxton. The rest, to plug holes. And there are plenty of holes. I don't think Simmons is back with the Twins next year. I don't think Lewis will be a SS in the future and with him missing the entire season this year he can't be counted on for anything until late next season at the best. This means serious money needs to be allocated for a long-term SS. I see Story and Baez as targets. Polanco belongs at 2B. If this team hopes to be relevant the next 2-3 years they need a SS !! One other point: I've finally, after a lot of musing, decided that between Berrios and Buxton if I keep one and part ways with the other, would keep Berrios. PITCHING is what will make the Twins a playoff-competitive team. it ALWAYS is. Look back on Twins history. In 1962-63 they pitched and finished 2nd & 3rd to the Yankees. In 1964 they had GREAT hitting, but didn't pitch well and finished 7th ! In 1965 they pitched and won the A.L. Pennant despite missing Killebrew for half the season. In 1966 & 1967 they pitched and were runner-ups. In 1969 & 1970 their pitching was good and they won the division. Fast forward to last year. They won the division because they pitched much better than they hit. We will NOT be better next year, if, as a team that has pitching issues, we trade Berrios or Rogers. We could possibly be better without Pineda but NOT without Berrios. In the entire time Buxton has been a Twin it seems like he's played in half the games. We've learned how to play without him and still be good. Are we better WITH him ?? Clearly, we are. But if I'm going to make a blockbuster and get an insane return of value for a player, I part with Buxton (who was playing like an A.L. MVP). We do NOT trade Buxton for anything less than an insane return. Someone either blows us away, or we give him a 3-year $80 million dollar contract and see what the next 3-years turns out to be. If we DO deal Buxton, acquire someone like Kevin Kiermaier to play CF if you don't think Celestino will work out. And you still have Lewis (who I think will end up in CF). There has been more disappointment/failure with this front office than successes. I must admit, I'm not very confident they can turn things around. The White Sox are crushing the division (as was predicted) despite losing Robert and Jimenez for the entire season to date. And the White Sox has some young pitchers who are impressive. Cleveland can flat out pitch. The Tigers have some very impressive young arms. This FO has to figure this out or we're looking at another decade of mediocrity. Time will tell.
    3 points
  29. By the way, some of you may have noticed your achievements aren't appearing yet... that's because I didn't realize the system needed to rebuild ALL 1.1 MILLION POSTS AND ARTICLES before they'd appear. So yeah, gonna be a few hours before the system can process all those pieces of content. At the very latest, all of this should be wrapped up by the afternoon of July 4th.
    3 points
  30. 3 points
  31. Yes to trading Happ, Shoemaker and probably Colome, assuming you can get anything for them. (I say probably on Colome as he's been unusually poor but is showing life as of late. Can he build trade value yet?) I don't WANT to trade Cruz but he may have value to a handful of contending teams and couple bring a decent A level prospect or a AA level pitcher with a live arm transitioning to the pen. IMO, nobody will want Donaldson, not because he isn't z fine player, but because of the contract. And by the Twins kick in enough $ to make a trade palatable, I'm not sure the return is better than keeping him. He's actually, probably, more tradeable in 2023 with some cash to cover a potential 2024 buyout. Sano, IMO is a more likely enticement to teams that woukd be willing to gamble on his production and age, 29yo in July, and some upside knowing how good he can be. But like Donaldson, are the Twins better off then just keeping him? Or do they feel enough roster crunch and want to free up some $ for 2022? Pineda might actually bring back a decent A or AA prospect of similar nature as Cruz, but only if he gets healthy again. Will probably need a SS for 2022. There will be options in the off-season to consider, including bringing back Simmons. If you could get something for him now, take it. Personally, I think re-signing the 30yo Robles for next season will bring greater value than whatever they might acquire via trade. In a year where everything that could go wrong and seemingly has gone wrong, the Twins, unfortunately, don't really have many/any valuable trade assets unless they begin to gut the roster. And even if they wanted to do that, I would expect it to take place in the off-season to allow for better evaluation of the roster and the system. Plus, we still have 2/3 of the season to play. I don't see a gut of the team at this point, if at all. I know it's an unpopular position with a lot of people, but considering the total aberration that I feel this season is, I'm pretty much in favor of bringing back anyone not on a 1yr deal while continuing to play the prospects on the roster right now, and continue 2nd half promotions to AAA for a number of players and auditions for at least a handful of pitchers once Happ, Shoemaker and potentially others are gone. THEN we consider a couple keybp FA signings and maybe a trade or two if it makes sense.
    3 points
  32. With Buxton and Kepler due back and Gordon showing (so far) he can handle MLB pitching, and Garver due back in July, I would for sure entertain offers for Cruz and Simmons. I don't think Sano will draw any interest, but DFAing him should also be considered. The everyday line-up could look something like this: C - Jeffers, 1B - Kirilloff, 2B - Arraez, SS - Polanco, 3B - Donaldson, LF - Larnach, CF - Buxton, RF - Kepler, DH - Garver. Bench players would be Gordon, Astudillo, Refsnyder, and take your pick of Garlick/Rooker/Riddle or whoever may have been acquired in one of the trades.
    3 points
  33. At the end of the day Polanco and Kepler didn’t sign outlandish contracts if they ended up as utility and 4th OF roles. Sano’s contract is turning out to be an issue. Especially if his career keeps trending to Chris Carter territory. Buxton and Berrios both signed significant signing bonuses as draft picks and both are confident in gambling on themselves. Berrios due to his durability so far won’t have an issue getting a long term contract in FA. Buxton will end up being the most complex FA negotiation, potentially ever. There hasn’t been a player entering FA with undeniable talent that’s missed 50+% of available games in their career.
    3 points
  34. I strongly doubt the Twins extend either Berrios or Buxton. Berrios wants to see what he's worth in FA and if the Twins were going to extend him, that would've already happened. Buxton is expecting Betts/Lindor type money, and no way the Twins will pay that. I wouldn't touch extending him with a 20 foot pole with his injury history. Players with injury history in their 20's don't suddenly become healthy in their 30's. Aging is unavoidable, and since Buck relies so much on his speed as an asset, he will decline. I love Buck as much as anybody but you have to face the facts that he will not be a reliable CF. If he plays a corner spot he will be way overpaid especially when we have Larnach, Kiriloff, Wallner to fill those spots at a cheap price. Next 6: Arraez, Balazovic, Kiriloff, Larnach, Lewis, Duran.
    3 points
  35. SomeGuy

    Is Nelson Cruz Cooked?

    His Ground ball rate has risen quite a bit in May, over 49%. His career is 41.7%. His line drive rate seems to be what took the hit as it dropped to 7% in May down from his usual 20-22% he has been having with the Twins. I believe it is the wrist more than old age. His exit velocity and hard hit% were not off his career marks by this much for the first month. Injuries are way up this year, probably to be expected with the short season last year. League wide offense is also way down this year. I don't think he would fall off this much from old age in so short of a time. If you add up all the offense for all of MLB, the stat line is .236/.312/.393. I don't think anyone would consider that when talking about the average MLB player.
    3 points
  36. One of the most ridiculous articles I've ever read in sports. Sano has been babied by the Twins for way too long as it is. Simply put he has been one of the least productive twins in a long time. I don't think the writer watches him at all like the fans do. Most of us cringe when he comes up. It's strikeout time and rally killing time when he steps up to the plate. It's long time to move on Sano.
    3 points
  37. Get rid of the extra innings rule or at least wait until say the 13th inning or later. Maybe its time to start getting serious about an electronic strike zone. I have been against it up until the last couple of years but the current umpires are so far off that something needs to change. Not a big fan of 7 inning double headers either.
    3 points
  38. A well thought out piece but I would disagree somewhat here and there. I agree Dobnak needs to work on control, and this is just my opinion, but I think his stuff almost moves too much at times. But the secret to him is getting that slider to be consistent. I watched him a little in ST and that slider looked wicked! He harnesses that, and can reign in the break of his fastball, he has everything needed to be a solid SP. We are in agreement on Thorpe. A "dead arm" for a week or two early in the season is not unusual. You build up, you lose a little, and then you "muscle" back up. A LH with control, a change, a solid breaking ball, can succeed with high 80's velocity. A LH who can throw in the low 90's with the aforementioned can be pretty good. So who is Thorpe? I'm not sure right now. But I'm confused and kind of upset the Twins aren't just letting him pitch as a starter right now. Ober surprised me tonight. I expected the worst. I saw a decent, solid performance from a rookie starter with limited experience who threw some great pitches and maybe got squeezed a bit. But his change killed him. But I saw some good things I wasn't sure I was going to see. But I am just if not more excited for the second half of the season. Happ and Shormaker will be gone. Personally, I am hoping Pineda is not only kept but is re-signed as our 4th rotation piece for 2022 with another addition to the rotation next year, however it happens. And I'm 100% with you on letting the prospects play/pitch at this point. But what I'm waiting for is Duran, Chalmers, Winder, Balazovic and Celestino and a few others to climb the latter the second half and audition and get themselves ready for the second half of 2021 and 2022.
    3 points
  39. Agreed that Rocco should try extending the starters a little more. But when the bats stop scoring in the second inning and every dang reliever comes in and gives up multiple runs, as was the case last night (and about 20 other times this season), there really is no simple solution. The starters can pitch deeper into games, but it still won't matter if the bullpen and late-game offense both continue to be this inept.
    3 points
  40. There is absolutely nothing confusing about this decision. ST stats may not matter for vets, but they most certainly matter for rookies who are trying to make the team. Had he raked this spring, I'd agree that this is confusing. He didn't. Bottom line is that there was a competition for the job and he lost. Given how little experience he has in the high minors, some seasoning in AAA is certainly warranted.
    3 points
  41. I'll probably start worrying late-May to early-June...
    3 points
  42. You neglected what I see as another plus in the Shoemaker signing -- not having to rush Happ to get ready. The Twins COULD skip their No. 5 with a couple early off days, but they don't tend to do that. I especially don't see them doing that this year, with the concern about guys who didn't pitch a full year. So with Shoemaker, they can start Maeda on Thursday (4/1) and then have Berrios-Pineda-Shoemaker-Dodnak-Maeda-Berrios in the six-day stretch before the off day on the 9th. So, they could IL Happ at the beginning of the year, avoiding the need to rush lengthening him out. Then, on the 10th, they start the stretch with 12 straight days, so they could start Happ then, or wait until as late as the 15th. By that point, they could have all back and make the decision of whether to go with a six-man rotation for a time or move Dobnak to the bullpen or St. Paul. And by then, someone else could have easily gone down, still leaving them with five stretched-out guys and Thorpe stretched out in St. Paul (assuming he gets the extra option).
    3 points
  43. Rooker, a talented and younger prospect, should get the selection before Garlik initially. Not sure when Braxton's opt out takes place. Typically it's a month or so in the season from what I've seen in the past. I'd really like to see him stick around for a while. Tons of talent and still potential, but a good week vs a poor past few seasons doesn't put him above Cave. Won't find a bigger fan for Thorpe and Dobnak than right here, but not sure there is room for both. But the obvious caveat is the health of Thielbar. Really hope Thorpe gets that 4th option year for both team and player. I am a HUGE believer in Kirilloff and his future. I think he's going to be a hitting STUD with decent defense regardless of final spot. But regardless it's up to him to earn his spot. And he can. But with no games above AA except for his one playoff game experience when injury practically forced a promotion, I'm still flabbergasted in regard to all the angst that he might spend a little time at St Paul to better transition.
    3 points
  44. TopGunn#22

    The Shortstop factory

    It is odd that the best SS's the Twins have ever had (other than Zoilo) have all been acquired via trade (Cardenas, Gagne, Guzman come to mind). It is also true than Polanco was an A.L. All Star due to his bat, not his glove. I want to see the Twins get better "D" up the middle. That's why I'm not against looking at a FA signing (Simmons, Didi) or a trade for someone like Story. However, if a BIG move was made for someone like Story, I want the Twins to work out an extension much like the Mets did with Lindor. I don't want a one-year rental. I have no superior knowledge, I just see Lewis more as an outfielder. I still have hope for Wander Javier but this is pretty much a make or break year for him. He either stays healthy and puts himself back in the serious SS of the future conversation, or I fear he will never turn the corner and drift into the dust bin of forgotten prospects.
    3 points
  45. GNess

    The Shortstop factory

    Your assessment of the Twins' short stops is sound. Adding a player from outside the organization either via trade or free agency is about making the team better. That doesn't always mean simply shoring up weaker areas - the Twins could improve their team by bringing in a SS like Simmons and finding a different regular role for Polanco.
    3 points
  46. Great read, Mike, thanks! As you know, I have been a huge fan of Rosario since he was at Elizabethton however many years ago. Will be interesting to see what the Twins do. Have a feeling they may not think they have only two options, release him or go to arbitration. With all the unknowns in the World, they may just sit down and do a one or two year deal that both sides can live with. The biggest question I have from your numbers is Kepler's D. I refuse to believe that he is negative defensively. Maybe he took a hit in 2019 when he played much of the season with various injuries because most of the others outfielders weren't available.
    3 points
  47. I agree with your overview. I think the biggest thing the Twins need to do is find the good value moves they have had recently like Thielbar, Wisler, Dobnak, etc to help with filling out the rotation and BP so they can keep Cruz for 1 year. If Cruz gets a 2 year deal somewhere else (like the White Sox) you let him walk and they can replace his bat with someone like Brantley or maybe Grossman. The market seems like it will be really depressed given all of the options being declined so I think the cost to acquire interesting bounce back candidates like Kluber or undervalued guys like Smyley and Clippard will go a long way to filling out the roster as the team waits for their top prospects to matriculate through the system. Outside of bringing back Clippard and tendering Rogers I don't think the Twins need to spend a lot of money on the BP like a lot of other teams. Outside of spending big on a bat like Cruz the other big issue for me is getting a quality "10th" man to cover for Polanco and Donaldson given their injury history like Iglesias or Hernandez. I would spend most of my FA money on those two roster spots, Clippard, and a couple interesting bounceback/undervalued guys not on this year's team.
    3 points
  48. I understand and empathize with several of your frustrations. I think baseball needs to do something to increase balls in play and more hits. The three true outcome era isn't exactly thrilling baseball to watch. On the other hand, what exactly are hitters supposed to do these days? Hitting in the MLB hasn't been this difficult since the dead ball era. It was rare for a pitcher in the past to throw 95-100 MPH. Today, half of the pitching staff is capable of throwing that velocity. Pitchers are able to throw 99 MPH sinkers and 92 MPH sliders from the exact same arm slot. No wonder why players are selling out for the home run... So it's easier said than done to say slap the ball the other way, or hit it where they ain't. How do they fix this? Maybe they need to use analytics to find out the reaction time players had in the past with upper 80's fastballs and move the mound back to give the hitters a chance. Maybe they need to ban the shift. I don't know... But something needs to be done to get more excitement in the game.
    3 points
  49. I hope not. I enjoy watching his at bats even when he is struggling, compared to most of the Twins. However, if true, it would be sad and just more evidence that the team won't be competitive for quite some time.
    2 points
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