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Showing content with the highest reputation since 07/01/2021 in Blog Entries

  1. Critique of a front office is easy to make in the midst of a deeply disappointing season. While many fans are languishing over the incoming July trade deadline, I've heard a lot of complaints about the lack of waiver claims made this season by the Minnesota Twins. Why are the Twins continuing to trot out the likes of Colomé, Happ, and (formerly) Shoemaker, when the front office can claim replacement-level players from other teams for essentially nothing? The outright waiver transaction process is a deeply complicated one. Whenever a team wants to remove a player that is already on the 40-man roster, that player must first be offered to each of the other 29 major league teams. If another team claims that player, the player goes on that new team's 40-man roster. The full definition from MLB can be found here. Because I'm insane, and this season is awful, I decided to compile a list of every player that the Falvey/Levine front office has claimed from other organizations, in addition to players they've lost via waiver claims. How have they fared in the waiver claim game? Should they pick up the pace, now that they have nothing to lose? Do these claims actually amount to anything? These questions are important... but so is the trip down memory lane, once you read some of these names. Players Acquired Via Waiver Claim Date of Claim Player Claimed Position Team Claimed From fWAR in Minnesota 2/6/2017 Ehire Adrianza UTL IF San Francisco Giants 2.1 5/10/2017 Adam Wilk LHP New York Mets -0.2 6/7/2017 Chris Heston RHP Los Angeles Dodgers 0.0 3/24/2018 Kenny Vargas 1B Cincinatti Reds - 4/26/2018 David Hale RHP New York Yankees -0.2 5/28/2018 Taylor Motter UTL Seattle Mariners -0.3 8/3/2018 Johnny Field RF Cleveland Indians 0.1 8/3/2018 Oliver Drake RHP Cleveland Indians 0.2 10/31/2018 Michael Reed CF Atlanta Braves - 11/26/2018 C.J. Cron 1B Tampa Bay Rays 0.3 10/29/2019 Matt Wisler RHP Seattle Mariners 0.6 10/30/2020 Ian Gibault RHP Texas Rangers - 10/30/2020 Brandon Waddell LHP Pittsburgh Pirates -0.3 2/5/2021 Ian Hamilton RHP Philadelphia Phillies - 2/11/2021 Kyle Garlick RF Atlanta Braves 0.3 6/22/2021 Beau Burrows RHP Detroit Tigers - Total fWAR 2.6 The Twins have claimed a total of 16 players from opposing organizations since Falvey/Levine took over after the 2016 World Series. Of these 16 claims, their most consequential claim was their very first one. Ehire Adrianza was never a star, but a very productive role player for a number of contending Twins teams. After that, the list isn't so impressive. Matt Wisler was great at slinging sliders in the bullpen during the pandemic-shortened 2020 season, but the Twins cut him last offseason in a puzzling move. C.J. Cron and the currently-injured Kyle Garlick have been the largest "successes" outside of Adrianza and Wisler, each account for 0.3 fWAR as right-handed hitters that were acquired to mash left-handed pitching. Most of these players did not remain on the 40-man roster for a long time. Quite a few were lost to waivers shortly after the Twins acquired them, which include Kenny Vargas, Johnny Field, Oliver Drake, and Brandon Waddell. Such is the life on the waiver wire for many MLB players. Players Lost Via Waiver Claim Date of Claim Player Position Team Claimed By fWAR after Minnesota 11/18/2016 Adam Brett Walker LF Milwaukee Brewers - 8/26/2017 Tim Melville RHP San Diego Padres -0.2 9/14/2017 Engelb Vielma SS San Francisco Giants -0.1 11/3/2017 Randy Rosario LHP Chicago Cubs -0.3 11/3/2017 Daniel Palka OF Chicago White Sox -0.7 11/6/2017 Nik Turley LHP Pittsburgh Pirates 0.2 1/22/2018 Buddy Boshers LHP Houston Astros 0.1 2/23/2018 JT Chargois RHP Los Angeles Dodgers 0.5 3/22/2018 Kenny Vargas 1B Cincinatti Reds - 7/9/2018 Ryan LaMarre CF Chicago White Sox 0.4 10/10/2018 Juan Graterol C Cincinatti Reds -0.2 11/1/2018 Johnny Field RF Chicago Cubs - 11/1/2018 Oliver Drake RHP Tampa Bay Rays 0.4 1/11/2019 Aaron Slegers RHP Pittsburgh Pirates 0.4 5/26/2019 Austin Adams RHP Detroit Tigers -0.1 7/20/2019 Adalberto Mejia LHP Los Angeles Angels 0.0 8/14/2019 Ryan Eades RHP Baltimore Orioles -0.2 9/16/2019 Marcos Diplan RHP Detroit Tigers - 11/4/2019 Stephen Gonsalves LHP New York Mets - 9/5/2020 Ildemaro Vargas 2B Chicago Cubs -0.5 10/1/2020 Sean Poppen RHP Pittsburgh Pirates -0.1 5/8/2021 Brandon Waddell LHP Baltimore Orioles 0 5/14/2021 Travis Blankenhorn 2B Los Angeles Dodgers -0.1 6/5/2021 Dakota Chalmers RHP Chicago Cubs - 6/18/2021 Shaun Anderson RHP Texas Rangers - Total fWAR -0.5 You'll immediately notice this list of players lost via waivers during the Falvyey/Levine regime is a lot longer than the list of players they've acquired via waivers. All together, they have lost 25 players, which is 9 more players than they've claimed from other teams. The good news for the organization, is that this cumulative list has not come back to bite them. 10 of the 25 claimed players provided negative value for their new teams, after departing Minnesota. Daniel Palka's 2017 season really sunk this group, as he posted a -1.4 fWAR in only 93 plate appearances for the White Sox (after he provided 0.7 fWAR and a 109 wRC+ in 2018). The largest losses from this group have definitely been in the relief category, highlighted by JT Chargois, Oliver Drake, and Aaron Slegers. However, most of these players have had inconsistent careers, injuries, or both, in their time after playing for Minnesota. Even when factoring in some bullpen pieces this organization might regret losing, the total fWAR from these players after departing the Twins is -0.5 fWAR. The current front office has been right far more than wrong, when deciding how to churn the 40-man roster. Yearly Trends And Overall Takeaway Year Players Claimed From Other Teams Players Claimed By Other Teams 2016/2017 3 6 2018 7 7 2019 1 6 2020 2 2 2021 3 4 Total Players 16 25 Total fWAR 2.6 -0.5 fWAR Difference 3.1 Overall, the Twins have gained 3.1 fWAR from their decisions to gain and lose players from the waiver wire. That's a pretty decent result for a type of front office transaction that is often overlooked. It averages out to about 0.69 fWAR per season, factoring in the 4.5 seasons of the Falvey/Levine regime. Most of that waiver activity came in 2017 and 2018, when the front office was still adjusting to their inherited players from the previous front office. Successful teams don't always gamble roster spots on players exposed to outright waivers, which is evident in the 2019 team. One major caveat to point out across the yearly trend is that teams were probably hesitant to claim players from other organizations during the COVID-19 pandemic, so 2020 and early 2021 should be viewed through that lens. However, that didn't stop the Twins from claiming 3 bullpen arms (Ian Gibault, Brandon Waddell, and Ian Hamilton), and Kyle Garlick this offseason. The jury is still out on these claims, but Waddell did not go well. The most interesting thing about 2021 is that the Twins lost 4 players during their early season free-fall (Brandon Waddell, Travis Blankenhorn, Dakota Chalmers, and Shaun Anderson), before claiming Beau Burrows a few weeks ago from the Detroit Tigers. Is former first-round draft pick Beau Burrows the tip of the iceberg? Now that 2021 is officially kaput, will the front office be more aggressive? I sure hope so. Moves will be made in the next few weeks, and this 40-man roster will be significantly different as we approach the trade deadline. The 40-man roster will likely be smaller, and the Twins will be in front of the line when contenders have to cut players to account for their deadline additions. Waiver claims are rarely sexy transactions, but sometimes you stumble into a Ehire Adrianza or a Matt Wisler. The Twins have proven to be more successful than not when it comes to their waiver claim game. It's time to play, because there's simply nothing to lose.
    14 points
  2. Brock Beauchamp

    Introducing Achievements!

    Welcome to the brief rundown of Twins Daily’s newest feature, achievements! I’ve been waiting a *really* long time to roll this feature out to users and have spent a rather unhealthy amount of time developing it for the site. I hope you enjoy experiencing it as much as I enjoyed making it. Achievements, or awards, or gamification… you’ve probably run into it before in other avenues of your digital life. Achievements are most common (and were largely born out of) the console video game world, beginning on the Xbox platform in the mid-2000s. Basically, it boils down to this: do stuff, get (sometimes silly) awards and badges for doing it. Over the past month, I’ve designed over 60 custom badges that you can be awarded for performing sometimes mundane, other times complex, tasks across the Twins Daily platform. Comment on a post, get a badge. Write a blog post, get a badge. Vote on a poll, get a badge… you get the point. Do some of these tasks multiple times and sometimes (many times) you’ll get additional badges. If you visit your user profile page, you’ll see it now looks different, with achievements being prominently displayed near the top. With over 60 badges available right now, some of you older, veteran Twins Daily users will start accumulating achievements the moment you begin participating in various aspects of the site, as many (as many as possible, but not all) of the achievements are back-dated to the time you began using the site. So explore the site, try completing some random tasks like post a status update, and see if you get a badge for doing it! As you "achieve" new things, on top of badges, you will also be awarded points. Once you hit certain milestones in points, you raise in rank (out of 14 ranks in total). In the image above, my rank is "draft eligible", the third rank you will achieve. Here is a sampling of a few of the badges you can be awarded right now: Some achievements will be won seemingly at random but I assure you, there is a specific set of items that awarded you the badge (and sometimes, those items need to be completed in a specific order). And some badges will be awarded manually for “exceptional” things done on the site. Those will be the hardest to collect and the rarest achievements available on Twins Daily. And if anyone manages to get them all or one of the *really* difficult-to-uncover achievements, Twins Daily may have some special prizes available to users who can accomplish those rarest of feats on the site…
    5 points
  3. The conversation on this site as of late has been centered around should we trade player X, should we keep player Y, etc. We don’t have much else to talk about. If we are talking about trading assets, especially ones that are controllable and add value to your club next year and beyond, it raises the question – are you re-tooling or are you re-building? Now I know that a lot of people might say its too early to even think about what next years team might look like, it might be. But if your argument is “re-tool” then we need to look at what that might look like. We all are aware that Byron Buxton, Jose Berrios, and Taylor Rogers are set to become free agents following next season. Contract extensions for both Buxton and Berrios seems incredibly unlikely at this point. Both players have their flaws but are absolutely pieces you can build around. Taylor Rogers is one of the best relievers in the game, but is set to become a free agent, is going on age 32, and the front office has never paid more than 6.5 million for a reliever aside from two occasions (Reed and Colome) But throw all that out the window. What if they decide to give next year a go with Buxton, Berrios, and Rogers? What does a retool look like? I am ignoring the return that the pending free agents might be able to get you at the upcoming deadline, mostly because It’s not a given that can contribute next year. It could be a few low A prospects for all we know. I will also be using John Bonnes’s article on how much the Twins might have to potentially spend next year, that you can read here, as reference for my spending – 45 million dollars. The lineup, bench, and pitching staff I have put together is just a projection and very well could be different then what the Twins or you think it might look like. Please don’t roast me too harshly in the comments. Lineup Byron Buxton CF Max Kepler RF Trevor Larnach LF Josh Donaldson 3rd SS Jorge Polanco 2nd Alex Kirilloff 1st Mitch Garver C DH Andrelton Simmons SS Nelson Cruz DH Bench Luis Arraez UTI. Ryan Jeffers C Miguel Sano 1st/DH Nick Gordon UTI Rotation José Berríos SP Kenta Maeda SP SP SP Bailey Ober SP Michael Pineda JA Happ Bullpen Taylor Rogers Closer Jorge Alcala Set up Set up Tyler Duffey Set up Caleb Thielbar Mid Mid Mid Long Alex Colome Hansel Robles Here are the holes the Twins are going to need to fill entering 2022 season. Shortstop Designated Hitter Starter x2 Bullpen x4 __________ I am spending most of my 45 million dollar budget I have available on the rotation, as I view that as the biggest need the Twins have if they hope to compete in 2022. So, forgive me for slightly skimming over DH and Shortstop. Let’s start with how the Twins can round out the empty spots in the rotation and bullpen with what they presently have in the organization and who they could potentially add from outside the organization. Internal Options Name AGE LVL ERA GS W/L IP K’s BB’s Jhoan Duran * 23 AAA 5.06 4 0-3 16.0 22 13 Josh Winder 24 AAA 1.94 11 4-0 60.1 73 12 Jordan Balazovic 22 AA 4.44 6 1-1 24.1 33 8 Matt Canterino * 23 A+ 1.00 4 1-0 18.0 35 3 Blayne Enlow * 22 A+ 1.84 3 1-1 14.1 23 6 These are the Twins top 5 pitching prospects Duran is currently on the shelf with elbow soreness, something you never want to hear. The Twins shut him down for 6 weeks and we have 4 weeks remaining. To this point control has been a huge issue at AAA for him. Josh Winder has been fantastic. One of the lone bright spots for the Twins pitching prospects this season and I think you could expect him to contribute on some level in 2022. Balazovic has only made 6 starts this season working back from injury. Currently at AA, he has yet to make it through 6ip in any start this season. Canterino has not pitched since May but was having a great year at A+. I have not seen any reports on what a timetable looks like for his return. Enlow was off to a great start as well, but elbow soreness led to Tommy John so he’s out for the foreseeable future. It is only July, so things can change. But the top pitching prospects the Twins have are all dealing with stunted development timelines due to injuries. Duran is not coming back till August and has the dreaded elbow soreness so who knows what that means long term. He has not pitched more than 16 innings at AAA. Balazovic is still at AA and has only thrown 24 innings. Canterino has not pitched since May and Enlow is done for 2022 and 2023. Josh Winder is the only prospect you have of the 5 that has pitched well above the AA level in 2021. That's 1/5 of your top 5 pitching prospects you can truly count on to make some sort of impact in 2022 for the Twins. I do want to say that I believe in this group a lot, I think they all will be assets the Twins can count on for years to come. But is that in 2022? Don’t bank on it. Name AGE ERA GS W/L IP K’s BB’s Lewis Thrope 25 5.59 6 (23g) 0-2 14.0 46 24 Devin Smeltzer 25 4.26 7 (19g) 4-2 69.2 56 18 Griffin Jax 26 8.66 1 (5g) 1-1 17.2 14 8 Randy Dobnak 26 4.85 20 (32g) 9-11 118.2 75 30 "candidates" This was worse than I thought. Not really prospects, more so “candidates” to fill out spots for the 2022 Twins pitching staff. Anyways, I just went with their career numbers because all 4 players have been hurt throughout the 2021 season. I don’t even want to write out the numbers they have posted thus far, it’s painful. If you confidently think one of these guys will help you win games during the 2022 season, I’d love to hear why in the comments below. Anyways, moving on. Here is a look at what the Twins could bring in from outside the organization for pitching help. External Options The old fellas (37+) Max Scherzer Zach Greinke Justin Verlander Charlie Morton Highly, highly doubt any of these guys have interest in signing with the Twins. Aside from Scherzer, do you want the Twins to make a run at them? Pass, and they all say no thanks too. Tier 1 Lance Lynn Marcus Stroman Kevin Gausman Carlos Rondon Tier 1 does not make much sense to me. None of them are better than Berrios and if you are not going to pay him the 5 / 115mil we all expect him to get, why would you pay Marcus Stroman or Kevin Gausman somewhere in the range of 5 / 90mil? I think the sox can and will retain both Rondon and Lynn as well. Tier 2 Jon Gray Michael Pineda Robbie Ray Martin Perez Danny Duffy Zach Davies Not super inspiring. Jon Gray and Robbie Ray are probably the most appealing options. Pineda’s recent arm injury puts things up in the air for his future. We can skip the Martin Perez option as I cannot imagine the Twins getting back into that. Danny Duffy would be nice, but do you really want to commit something like 3 / 40mil to a guy going on 35? Tier 3 Noah Syndergaard Chris Archer Corey Kluber None of them are currently healthy, nor have they been the past 2 years. Syndergaard is interesting but even he is a question mark going into next year as he’s on the IL right now after issues following TJ. Trade Targets? German Marquez John Means Zach Gallen The Rockies, Orioles, and Diamondbacks are all rebuilding. They are not moving assets for someone like Max Kepler or Jorge Polanco. So, what can you offer up? Royce Lewis? Then your selling low on your best prospect. Balazovic or Duran? Welp, that would be, um, something when your desperate for pitching. Arraez? Jose Miranda? One of Jeffers / Garver? Not sure that moves the needle, nor are they prospects teams would covet…. After that, nothing is getting you a Marquez, Means, or Gallen. Now how about one of Trevor Larnach or Alex Kirilloff for pitching? It is an interesting idea and could dramatically change the Twins long term question mark at the position. You would have to be really sold on Max Kepler bouncing back. _____ Let’s fill out the rotation with 2 players from each tier 1 & 2 of starting pitchers. Gausman/Stroman/Lynn/Rondon Gray/ /Ray/ /Duffy Ok that realistically will command something in the range of 28 million. Take your pick of who that may be. I do want to point this out, you are not going to be able to sign anyone from Tier 1 to a 1-year deal. You will have to sign them to multiyear commitments with real money involved. Even Tier 2, id imagine most players will take no less than 2-year deals. You could sign 3 players from tier 2. Go a similar direction as they have in the past bargain shopping (Happ, Lynn, Shoemaker, etc.) Though that has not really worked out, so I am switching things up in my scenario. _____ As for the bullpen. It is anyone’s best guess. They are not signing Craig Kimbrel and after that its just a bunch of names to be quite honest. You can check out the list here. ______ For the sake of the “re-tool” argument I am committing 3 million to signing 2 no name relievers like the front office has done every year. We have now committed something in the ballpark of 31 million to revamp the pitching staff, with 2 new starters and 2 no name relievers (it’s anyone’s guess). _______ They now have 14 million remaining to fill the holes at Shortstop and DH. Designated Hitter The Designated Hitter class, surprise, is also poor. Nelson Cruz is going to probably be too expensive and may even retire. Id love him back though. But we have more pressing needs. After that, we can choose between Jorge Soler or Khris Davis. But why sign either of those guys when you have Miguel Sano on the roster? Brent Rooker? You could let em duke it out in Spring Training. Lets scratch signing a DH. _____ Shortstop On to Shortstop. They could move Jorge Polanco from 2nd base back to short and slide Luis Arraez in at 2nd. But I am not sure they want that defensive plan up the middle again. Nick Gordon, who was drafted as a shortstop, does not seem to be viewed as shortstop anymore. Other than Royce Lewis, who has question marks already staying at short long-term, has never played above AA, and coming off an ACL injury, the Twins lack internal options. We do not have the money to sign one of the crown jewels of the class so you can forget about Corey Seager, Carlos Correa, Marcus Semien, Trevor Story and Brandon Crawford. I do think Javier Baez is a notch below those guys and he probably would be open to a shorter-term deal. Maybe something like 1 / 14 mil? He has a .282 OBP to this point, though slugging .778. It will be interesting to see what the market is for him. The 2nd Tier in the SS class consists of Freddy Galvis, Alcides Escobar, Andrelton Simmons and Jose Iglesias. As for trade options, Dansby Swanson could be available if the Braves decide to go after a big name. Other than that, I do not see a ton being available or frankly anything that intriguing. I am rolling with Javy Baez on the 1yr / 14 mil deal. Twins get lucky, sign Berrios’s brother in-law, and see how it plays out. It is a nice bridge while we wait for Royce Lewis. ______ We have run through the options, lets look at what we got to compete in 2022. Lineup Byron Buxton CF Max Kepler RF Trevor Larnach LF Josh Donaldson 3rd Javier Baez SS Jorge Polanco 2nd Alex Kirlloff 1st Mitch Garver C Miguel Sano DH Bench Luis Arraez UTI. Ryan Jeffers C Jose Miranda 3rd/DH Nick Gordon UTI Rotation Jose Berrios SP Kenta Maeda SP Gausman/Stroman/Lynn/Rondon SP Gray/Ray/Duffy SP Bailey Ober SP Bullpen Taylor Rogers Closer Jorge Alcala Set up No Name #1 Set up Tyler Duffey Set up Caleb Thielbar Mid No Name #2 Mid Randy Dobnak Mid Devin Smeltzer Long Again, this is in no way what the Twins are going to do, merely an idea of what a “re-tool” might look like. So, before you rip me in the comments for signing the wrong guys or not doing what you think they should or should not do, this exercise gives you a glimpse into the options the Twins have both internally and externally to build a competitive team in 2022 for one last run with Buxton, Berrios, and Rogers all together. So now you can ask yourself the questions that matter. Does that team win the central? Does it win a wild card berth? Are you putting the organization in the best possible to position to compete with the White Sox the next 4-5 years? Do we have a pipeline of pitching prospects we are confident in? I think that this team can be competitive. 85-88 wins? thats barring everyone being healthy. This is all hinging on Polanco continuing to swing the bat well, Kepler being more consistent, Maeda returning somewhat to his old self, Bailey Ober continuing to pitch as well as he has, Thielbar, Duffey, and Alcala continue being trusted options, etc. There's a lot of question marks. My concerns mainly start with depth of the minor league system, specifically pitching. Where do they stand with Berrios and Buxton on extensions? If I'm either player, im a year away from free agency, why would I take an extension now? If you sign the players to help you compete in 2022, do you even have enough money left to try and pay them? At the end of the day the front office’s job is to do what’s best for the organization. The last thing any GM wants to do is plays catch up because they were not proactive. If you have doubts about any of those questions you need to shift your focus to 2023 and beyond. That might mean moving Jose Berrios and Taylor Rogers at the deadline. Which is a hard pill to swallow for some fans, but it is the smart thing and the right thing to do.
    4 points
  4. The National League West is looking like it will be a battle to the end. Maybe even to the death ? Ok, not that far. The first place San Francisco Giants have been the surprise team in baseball this season. It's a great story as they've been able to hold off the Dodgers and Padres, two teams many had as the favorites to battle for the National League pennant. I like the Giants. Gabe Kapler seems like a cool manager with his cool shades, they've pieced it together without a true star, and you cant forget they have sweet uni's. As much as I like them, they aren't going to hold off the Dodgers and Padres. The Dodgers (1 GB) are the defending world series champions and the front office has constructed this roster to go back to back in 2021. The Padres (4.5 GB) are the new team on the block. The most exciting team in baseball and the flashy young star in Fernando Tatis. The Padres General Manager, Aj Preller, was extremely aggressive this past offseason pushing all the chips in the middle to take down the Dodgers. Both teams are built to win now and have world series hopes. Both teams happen to be struggling with pitching. Now before you jump down my throat, this is a hypothetical scenario and just a mythical piece of writing that some kid whipped up on the couch today. Ok, Let's get into it. Dodgers Los Angeles bolstered the rotation this past offseason, signing the reigning Cy Young winner Trevor Bauer to a 3 year / 102 million dollar deal. Unless you have been living under a rock, you've probably heard that he doesn't treat women with the most respect. He's been placed on the commissioners list and it doesn't sound like he's coming back anytime soon. Adding insult to Trevor's horrible decisions, Clayton Kershaw was recently placed on the Injured list with what's being called a "sore right forearm" . That's typically not what you want to hear in baseball when it comes to pitchers, and we don't want to speculate. He could be back in a week for all I know. The point is they are down 2 of their top starters who happen to be 2 Cy young winners. Now, the bullpen. Closer Kenley Jensen has been fantastic with a 1.27 ERA, but he's a free agent after this season and is going on age 34. Joe Kelly has bounced back this season with a 3.86 ERA, but has a 12 million dollar team option following the season and the Dodgers aren't picking that up. Newly signed Blake Treinen has been just what they hoped for with a 2.78 ERA in 36 games. Looks pretty good right? Statically these 3 have been great. They also all happen to be right handed, have less han 2 years remaining on their current deal or have an option that won't be exercised. Throw in the fact they all are 34 next year. Not exactly spring chickens. Victor Gonzalez, the only trusted lefty out of the pen this year, just went on the IL. His timetable for a return is unclear at this point. Prior to that he had a 5.06 ERA in his previous 8 outings. They need a lefty reliever and they need someone to potentially fill in for 1 or both of their 2 top starters. Like, right now. Dodgers - Jose Berrios, Taylor Rogers Self explanatory after what we just broke down. They acquire 2 controllable assets through next year and fill glaring holes in the pitching department as they chase another ring. I'd assume the Dodgers are going to treat the Bauer situation like he's not apart of the team, until, well he is. Truthfully no one knows when that might be and no one knows what long term repercussions will result from the situation. Jose Berrios isn't Trevor Bauer, but he's a better and cheaper option, than anything you can acquire at the deadline or this upcoming offseason. Taylor Rogers is the shutdown lefty they don't currently have. Younger and Controllable through next year, Rogers gives the team payroll flexibility, fills empty an empty bullpen spot next year and enables them to move on from whatever long-term commitment a 34 year old Jensen might command. Twins - Dustin May, Ryan Pepiot, Andre Jackson Prior to going down with Tommy John in the spring, Dustin May was on his way to becoming an ace. The 23 year old had a 2.74 ERA with 35 K's in 23 IP. That seems good. Personally I don't care if you have to wait until the middle of next season if you get a pitcher of this caliber, who ill say again, is 23.. . Fun kicker, he's controlled through 2026. The Dodgers are giving up a lot in May but they can't wait and need reinforcements now. Ryan Pepiot has been on every "name to watch" prospect report since May. He's lit up AA with a 1.73 ERA in 41.2 IP to go along with 57K's.. Pepiot's fastball works around 93-95, with his changeup being the best pitch. He wasn't really stretched out much early in the season but in his last 2 starts he's gone over 6 innings twice, might be to boost trade value or for their personal use, not sure. Andre Jackson is currently at AA right now and is a bit older of a prospect being 25. He's got a 3.78 ERA, with 63 K's in 50 IP. Padres If you want to talk about a team that's built to "win-now", your in luck. The Padres have dealt away pretty much half the farm system in the past 365 days to build an all-star rotation. Now im embellishing, they still have a ridiculously good farm system. But in the past year they have added Yu Darvish, Jose Musgrove, Blake Snell, and Mike Clevinger. This is a team that already had the top pitching prospect in all of baseball being Mackenzie Gore. We can't forget Ryan Weathers, Dinelson Lamet, and Chris Paddack. Talk about an embarrassment of riches. So much depth they cant fail, wait...... Clevinger is currently recovering from Tommy John. Blake Snell has been absolutely horrible. Failing to pitch over 5 innings in all but 1 of his last 7 starts. He currently has a 6.60 ERA in his last 30 IP to pair with 19 BB's, and is thought to be headed to the IL as he's struggled to "build strength" following his last start. Dinelson Lamet is on the IL with forearm issues after dealing with a setback. Ryan Weathers is on a 120 inning limit and currently at 60.1 IP. Chris Paddack allowed 9 runs last night and has a 7.71 ERA over his last 7 starts... Maybe Mackenzie Gore can step in? He's got a 5.85 ERA at AAA. Things are tough in slam diego. Padres - Jose Berrios, Taylor Rogers In an offseason of all-in moves, why stop now? I've read reports about them potentially going after Joey Gallo of the Rangers, but if the pitching is this bad, you can't splurge when you have a lineup that's more than capable of scoring runs already. Jose Berrios gives them a durable, reliable, starter behind the 1-2 punch that is Yu Darvish and Joe Musgrove. Taylor Rogers anchors the setup role in the bullpen that can be safely handed over to Mark Melancon in the 9th. Hoarding prospects isn't really an option for a team that is so committed to winning and Aj Preller has never shied away from doing so. The Padres ease their pitching concerns with this deal. Twins - Robert Hassell, Ryan Weathers, Justin Lange, Brayan Medina The headliner for the Twins is outfielder Robert Hassell. MLB.com has him as the no. 62 prospect in all of baseball and he's going to sky rocket in upcoming years. Through 51 games at low A, "bobby barrels" as Padre fans refer to him as, owns a .379 OBP, .297 AVG, .843 OPS, and 19 stolen bags. This is also his first taste of pro ball, as he's only 19. Ryan Weathers isn't a bad no. 2 return in this deal either. The lefty has a 3.02 ERA through 10 starts and 16 games this year at the major league level and he's only 21. He works in the mid 90s with a solid curve and slider to back it up. Justin Lange is a 6'4, comp. round selection from 2020. Having a 65 grade fastball and wipeout slider, Lange may be more of a project but the potential if he reaches his ceiling is worth it. Brayan Medina is actually my favorite piece of this deal. Medina is a 6'1, 180lb, 18 year old who already is working in the mid 90s. He looks to have the control and delivery to stick as a starter. Similar to Lange, he may be a bit of a project but from a few reports I've read, some scouts think he could move through the system quickly with his advanced control. These teams are desperate. It's not often the top starter on the trade market has control beyond this year. There also aren't too many controllable dominant lefty relievers laying around either. Let me know what you guys think about these 2 options.
    3 points
  5. Over a 7-year career ending in 1979, Twins DH Craig Kusick came to the plate 1461 times, compiling an unremarkable slash line of .235/.342/.392. Kusick may have had a briefer stay in the bigs, however, if it was not for his uncanny ability to hit Frank Tanana of the California Angels who was the most intimidating strikeout pitcher in the American League not named Nolan Ryan or Vida Blue. Kusick ended up facing Tanana more than any other pitcher over his career – 59 times - which was about 4% of all his plate appearances. In those at-bats, Kusick went 16 for 42 (.381) drawing a Bonds-like 16 walks for a .542 on-base percentage. He also took Tanana deep 4 times in those 42 at-bats and drove in 11 runs. Three of those home runs came in consecutive games against Tanana in 1976, after which Tanana walked Kusick 7 times in the next 5 times they met – twice intentionally. While Kusick was certainly not a Twins great, his inextricable linking to Tanana suggests an interesting related topic. Thanks to the Batter-vs-Pitcher data on Baseball Reference we can now ask and answer who were the opposing players Twins greats faced the most and who owned whom? * * * * * * * * * For the first "Who Owned Whom?" we look at a recent Twins great, Joe Mauer. Over his 15-year career, Mauer played in 1858 games and had 7960 plate appearances. He batted .306, had an on-base average of .388, slugged .439 with 143 home runs, scored 1018 runs and drove in 939. His most frequent opposing pitcher over his career was none other than Detroit’s Justin Verlander who faced off against Joe in 97 plate appearances. Verlander, who has a career .228 batting average-against and OPS-against of .652, was definitely "owned" by Mauer as Joe finished with a slash line of .317/.423/.537 on 26 for 82 hitting with 15 walks. The 26 hits are the most by Mauer against any pitcher and the first one came in his first at-bat against Verlander in the second game of a Saturday double header versus Detroit on July 23rd, 2005 as Joe hit an 0-2 pitch deep to left field in Detroit for an RBI double. The other pitchers Joe faced frequently were Rick Porcello –who fared better than his Tigers teammate - (75 plate appearances, .243/.293/.329) and the unfortunate John Danks of the White Sox. (71 plate appearances, .381/.451/.476) Coincidentally (or not), Danks is the only pitcher to have beaned Mauer more than once. CC Sabathia is the pitcher that struck Joe out the most -17 Ks in 52 plate appearances - and, along with another lefty, Mark Buehrle, most “owned” Joe. Joe only managed .196/.269/.239 against Sabathia and .197/209/.303 against Buehrle. Sabathia was also the first pitcher Mauer faced in the big leagues in his debut versus Cleveland in the Season Opener at the Metrodome on April 5th, 2004. Mauer, batting 8th, walked on 4 pitches against Sabathia in the 3rd and struck out swinging on a full count in the 5th. Sabathia pitched through the 7th and left with a 4-0 lead. The Twins rallied to tie the game, 4-4, in the 8th inning and Mauer's first big league hit would come on a single to center off Rafael Betancourt leading off the 9th. The game went to extra innings and Mauer got his second hit on a one-out, one-on single to right in the 11th off Chad Durbin, moving Nick Punto (running for Matt LeCroy who had walked) to third. After a Christian Guzman strikeout, Shannon Stewart lifted a Durbin fly ball deep to LF for a game-winning 3-run homer, bringing in Mauer and Punto and blowing 49,584 Metrodome fans from the exits hoarse and happy. What a memorable game to start a career! Watch for another installment of "Who Owned Whom" coming soon.
    3 points
  6. Byron Buxton is quite arguably the most talented player in Minnesota Twins history. His athleticism is unmatched, and his production is unparalleled. Then there’s the caveat, when healthy. With the hometown nine looking at the doldrums of the division, and the 2021 Major League Baseball trade deadline looming, plenty of storms are brewing on the roster construction front. One of the most reported is that of Minnesota’s failed attempts at a contract extension with their star centerfielder. Currently shelved after being hit by a pitch, Buxton had rebuffed the latest seven-year, $80 million pact that would add addition earning opportunity through incentives. That deal was just a $7 million increase over the previous offer, and still nearly $20 million shy of where this front office paid another oft-injured 3rd basemen (who is five years older) just two seasons ago. The refrain regarding Buxton’s availability is a common one, he has been shelved often throughout his career. The reality though, is that it is through the injury history where the Twins find themselves offered grace. Because he’s been unavailable, Buxton’s $200 million or more payday is not going to happen. He would command plenty on the open market with more competition bidding on his services, but it’s the Twins who have the table and the realistic opportunity because of how his career has played out. Coming into 2021 the team was expected to be good. Unfortunately, the front office has watched each of its offseason acquisitions tie together career-worst seasons, as well as regression from plenty of holdover talents. Unless there’s an admittance of poor talent assessment virtually across the whole roster, then there should be reason to look at this season as an outlier. 2022 represents an opportunity to reload. If the core of this club was seen as competitive before, and that’s been proven through their track record of winning, an alteration of that belief shouldn’t be so swift. To suggest there’s an attempt at competing in the year ahead while dealing the team’s best player would be hollow at best. Certainly, both Jose Berrios and Buxton should command a haul when it comes to prospect capital in exchange for their services. The volatility of those players will always be high however, and you’d need at least two reaching something like the 95th percentile of their hopefully outcomes to feel good about what you gave up. Berrios would love a gaping hole in an already poor rotation, and Buxton’s presence would be missed on a nightly basis. Derek Falvey and Thad Levine have put in an infrastructure of sustainability and competitiveness. They should be commended for that. Bailing on that process at the Major League level rather than supplementing what they have fostered would be a hard pill to swallow, and one worthy of substantial criticism. For more from Off The Baggy, click here. Follow @tlschwerz
    2 points
  7. Welcome to the latest entry into my Tips & Tricks series! In this brief post, I’ll quickly run through another new-to-us feature, “Following”. This will allow you to track and follow the content of people and content you like throughout the Twins Daily website. Essentially, there are three aspects to following on Twins Daily: following categories, following content, and following individuals. I’ll run through each aspect and how each can be useful to you and improve how you find your favorite content on Twins Daily. Following Individuals There are probably some contributors and forum users you like better than the rest, individuals whose content you know is going to be quality so you don’t want to miss it. Following a person on Twins Daily is easy, just click on their username or avatar and visit their profile page. Near the top of the page, you will see a “Follow Member” button. Click that, specify the parameters of your follow and whether you’d like to follow anonymously, and that’s it! You will now be notified whenever this user creates new content anywhere on the site! NOTE: You should set your notification settings to specify how you’d like to receive information about new and updated content. You can change your notification settings from your user options screen or by clicking the link earlier in this paragraph. Scroll down to the “Followed Content” option and selecting your settings. Following Categories You can follow groups of content in Twins Daily, as well. Are you a minor league specialist? Then consider following the minor league news category. Maybe you want to catch all Twins news content, you can do the same. Just visit the category or forum page and somewhere near the top of the page, you will see a “Follow” button. Click that, specify your preferred options, and you will be notified of all content that is added to that category or forum. This also works for blogs if you want to follow the blog entries of your favorite Twins Daily writers, just pop over to their main blog page and search for the “Follow” button. Following Content This is the most granular of the following options on Twins Daily. You can follow specific content you see on the site. If you like an article and its resulting comments, follow that article and you will be updated as new comments are added. The same applies to forum threads or individual blog entries, just look for the “Follow” button near the top of the page. In the settings link I provided above, you can set to automatically follow content you create and content you participate in. If you’re a regular forum user or news story commenter, these are really useful functions to stay abreast of an interesting conversation and any replies you received to your own content. That’s about it! I highly recommend everyone consider using the follow function on Twins Daily, as it’s just one more tool at your disposal to curate the site to fit your personal preferences. And if you’re enjoying the new achievements system, there may be special badges to unlock by following content and other Twins Daily users…
    2 points
  8. A handful of years back I wrote something along the lines of the Twins most necessary move was to deal Glen Perkins. He was competing at an All-Star level, and Minnesota was beyond terrible with no end in sight. A bad team didn’t need a closer, and the haul should’ve been handsome. In a similar spot, the Twins may be ill-advised to make that move with Taylor Rogers. Yes, the Major League club is not good. No, the farm system doesn’t have a ton of immediate answers. This season isn’t going to result in a second-half turnaround, and a bullpen that’s already bad isn’t and hasn’t been saved by one good arm. The key difference here, however, is how Derek Falvey and Thad Levine view themselves in 2022. Although good teams don’t necessarily need a closer, they absolutely need a strong bullpen. Moving Taylor Rogers with another year of team control, and as one of the most dominant relief arms in the sport, would suggest they don’t view a run coming in the year ahead either. Rocco Baldelli has seen his lineup come around over the past handful of weeks, but it’s still been pitching that has failed this club. While the rotation is chiefly to blame, supplementing and retooling the bullpen is a must for next season. Doing that with the additional hole that Rogers’ absence would cost becomes difficult. This season Rogers owns a 2.65 ERA along with a 12.2 K/9 and 1.9 BB/9. In 2020 he posted an outlying 4.05 ERA, but it was hiding a 2.84 FIP and still fell in line the strikeout and walk rates across his career. The uncharacteristic 1.500 WHIP got Taylor last year and pitching in a short season without opportunity for positive regression didn’t help. His counting numbers are now back to who he always has been, and what the expectation should be. Baseball right now remains enamored with high leverage relievers. This winter we saw the Chicago White Sox drop $54 million on Liam Hendriks. I don’t now what Rogers will earn two seasons from now, but he’ll be hitting the free agent market at the same age Hendriks did this year. Saves are a goofy stat, but they do get paid for at least in arbitration, and Rogers currently has more than Hendriks did when he was signed by the South Siders. Maybe a team will blow the Twins away with a couple of top tier prospects. That doesn’t seem like a great bet given the relief trade market often seems to be filled with organizations looking to be opportunistic and capitalize on a veteran’s immediate success without much of a long-term commitment. If Falvey can find a taker willing to pony up though, then that’s a move Minnesota should consider. If flipping Rogers is being done because he fits the category of desirable asset and the return is just good enough, I’d hope that this front office would reconsider. Maybe they don’t have intentions to reload in 2022, or they see that as a lofty goal. Either way, venturing down the path to relevance in the season ahead gets unquestionable tougher by taking an arm like Rogers out of an already deficient area of this roster. Maybe you shouldn’t pay for relief help. The Twins best bullpen acquisitions this year were a waiver claim and a guy that cost $2 million. You certainly shouldn’t piece out the pen before you have to when you’re trying to re-ignite it though. For more from Off The Baggy, click here. Follow @tlschwerz
    2 points
  9. Now that it is clear Twins must be sellers, the most pressing issue to the FO must be: Retool or Rebuild? With the trade deadline in just 4 weeks, many big decisions must be made this month. Just to restate the obvious: retooling can be defined as fielding a 2022 squad that can be a legitimate contender at least for a playoff spot. A rebuild means tearing down the core and hoping to contend by 2024/5 at the earliest. For starters, let's list the key factors that would allow for a retool: 1. Build around the existing core of Berrios, Buxton, Donaldson, Rogers, Arraez, Kirillof and Larnach. I would also add Pineda and Maeda to this "core", as expecting to contend next season without at least three set rotation pieces would be comparable to entering 2021 with only question marks for the bullpen. One might argue that guys like Sano, Kepler, Polanco, Jeffers/Garver, could also be considered core players, but at best, these are either fringe players going forward with probably more value as trade pieces. Despite all the chatter about trading, the Twins need this core in place to have any real chance of contending next year. This doesn't necessarily mean resigning Buxton, Berrios, and Rogers, but their absence would likely severely limit contention chances next year. 2. To get higher impact prospects who could expect to contribute to the major league team in 2022, trade from strength. This means guys like Garver and Polanco should be available this month(alternatively, Jeffers and Arraez could be substituted but they are much more likely to contribute to squads beyond next year so should only be traded for very high end prospects). Guys like Sano and Kepler who have obviously fallen short of early promise, should also be marketed but they are not likely to bring back major-league-ready prospects. Expiring contracts should not be renewed(except for Pineda), although if Cruz does not bring back at least a medium level pitching prospect for next year, perhaps he should be retained as a player/hitting coach. He's that remarkable. 3. Push the best available pitching prospects up by Aug. 1st. Not a lot to choose from here, with injuries, limited or poor performances from guys like Duran, Enlow, Balozovic, but certainly Winder and Cano, if they both can establish their AA success has translated to AAA in July) should be promoted. Duran and/or Balozovis could be brought up after Sept. 1st if healthy and if they can turnaround some control issues that have emerged. They can continue to run out guys like Jax and Ober but they have shown little to warrant optimism for being keys to a pitching rebound. With one or two high end pitchers acquired by the trade deadline plus hopefully, one or two minor leaguers who show more promise than the retreads used to date in 2021, the FO should have a clearer idea what the basic needs are in the offseason. At best, the Twins could find themselves entering the offseason with the need for one strong starter and one or two late inning relievers rather than a major bullpen overhaul. At that point it is incumbent upon ownership to step up and declare money is available for signing current stars and adding the necessary high end talent rather than nibbling around for bargains - a strategy that has obviously contributed to our record-setting playoff losing streak, as well as this year's collapse. And one more thing for the offseason. Rocco must go and replaced with an old-school, experienced disciplinarian. It's worked for the Sox. Why not the Twins? So give Falvine until June 30th 2022 to see if they're on the right track. If not, time for a midseason change. After this year's colossal failure, the rope should be short. If ownership is unwilling to spend for high level talent and keep the core together for at least one more year, then rebuilding is the only alternative. Trading Berrios and Buxton would be necessary before 2022 and a 3 year minimum rebuilding program should be instituted. This rebuild has to be conducted by new FO personnel, ones who are not so risk averse as Falvine and have had experience in successfully rebuilding other franchises. What about Theo?? Of course, the ultimate solution is new ownership- one who is agressive about wanting a winner and willing to invest in the future. Mark Cuban, are you listening? But that's just wishful thinking. Conservative banking mentality will probably be our albatross for years to come. So what do you all think? Is contention likely for this franchise in 2022 or is rebuild under new management the way to go?
    2 points
  10. Before we look into our crystal balls post-deadline, a quick review of what's just transpired might be in order. First, we lost our best hitter and best pitcher. For this very reason, chances are this season is going to get even worse. Three of our new starters will likely be Ober, Jax and Barnes, none of whom figures to be better than a #5 starter. The bullpen has arguably gotten worse without Rogers and Robles. And the offense will likely continue to be erratic - some big run production outings against below average pitching, but more likely low run production against even average pitching. And with a very difficult August schedule, the likelihood of the Twins climbing out of the cellar looks mighty slim. But let's look at the bright side. The Twins prospect depth greatly improved. We've added at least 3 top 10 prospects, probably catapulting our depleted, injury-stricken minor league system into the top ten in MLB, at least on paper anyway. And just as importantly, we kept several players who can be building blocks going forward. You cannot underestimate the importance of Maeda and Pineda, solid #2 and #3 starters in leading a reenergized rotation in 2021. Nor can you ignore the importance of having a Donaldson and hopefully healthy Buxton leading the offense next year. Which brings me to my first point : they need to resign both Pineda and Buxton if this team has any chance of jumping into contention in 2023. This team will likely not be a playoff contender next year but for them to bounce back to at least a .500 record and set the stage for contention in 2023, these 4 players must be kept.. Continuing on the bright side, this FO did a great job in the trade department. They received at least 3-4 players who should be playing in the big leagues as soon as next year, but most likely by 2023. The rotation's future looks much brighter with guys like Joe Ryan and SWR, not to mention our top prospects, Winder and Balozavic, should yield one or two rotation mainstays by 2023. Which brings me to point#2: Sign a FA with ace potential this offseason. My first choice is Syndergaard who should be more affordable due to injury but still young enough to lead a contending staff. He should be an offseason priority. This is a risk but one well worth taking if the team is committed to rebounding quickly. The new additions will also mitigate against rushing some of our younger prospects and perhaps switching some to relievers. Which brings me to the bullpen. We added some middling prospects, one of whom might prove valuable in the pen. We still have Rogers, Duffy and Thielbar, with a few minor leaguers on the verge. Let;s bring up guys like Cano, Hamilton, and Moran and see how they do. Coulombe has looked decent. Point #3: they must spend the $ for a top FA reliever. Any suggestions? I'm at a loss here. And let's try to get Alcala straightened out at AAA now, as well as transitioning Duran to the pen. This is still a dumpster fire but at least it can't get much worse than it is now. So count me as positive for the retool. It sure beats a long rebuild!!
    1 point
  11. The 2021 Minnesota Twins have been terrible, there’s no denying that. Where blame lies is debatable, but the manager is dealing with a deck missing plenty of cards. He’s no absolved from any wrongdoing, but a “Fire Rocco” campaign is also shortsighted. Instead, 2022 is shaping up to be a defining act. Through his first two seasons as the Twins skipper, Baldelli posted a 147-85 record. He led the club to back-to-back AL Central Division titles, and he took a team underperforming to new heights. After navigating a pandemic stricken season that included plenty of uncertainty, the only thing certain is that 2021 requires a reset. In April, this club seemed to be dealt a good amount of bad luck. They were 9-15 despite a plus-two run differential. From there injuries and ineffectiveness took over, rendering most managerial decisions a moot point. This club wasn’t supposed to be bad, and they don’t have to be in the year ahead, but how their leader directs them could be somewhat of a career defining turning point. Rocco is young, just 39-years-old, but was he a beneficiary of a team that blasted a boatload of homers and played a shortened season? Maybe he was snakebit by a team that couldn’t stay healthy and get out of its own way. No matter what the Twins have been with their new manager, 2022 has the opportunity to allow him runway for a new mark to be made. I’d argue the Twins would be silly to rebuild. Plenty of this core was seen as impact players coming into the season. Unless that evaluation by the front office was completely misguided, shuffling in new parts makes a lot of sense. Allowing youth to get their feet wet in 2021 should benefit them in more substantial roles going forward. Even in a rebuild though, there’s opportunity to shine. The Detroit Tigers were abysmal out of the gate and have since played a much stronger brand of baseball. A.J. Hinch was brought in as a replacement for Ron Gardenhire with the hope of leading a young roster back to relevance. He’s not going to do that this season, but they’re trending in the right direction, and it seems as though the Astros former skipper wasn’t just a by-product of a talented environment. Rocco Baldelli doesn’t need to be defined by a record or banners in his first few seasons, but what he’ll have to prove in the year ahead is that process is driving results. We can throw away the present season and provide a pass given the circumstances, from there, a need to see more impact and growth resonating from the man in charge is a must. Derek Falvey and Thad Levine will do plenty to outline the future’s course over the next week prior to the trade deadline. From there, Baldelli will have a clearer directive on what in front of him and showing an ability to navigate the path forward is his next challenge. For more from Off The Baggy, click here. Follow @tlschwerz
    1 point
  12. Continuing from my Top 30 Prospect Rankings in the winter, I have updated my standings in accordance to how well things have gone for the individual players. I'll try to keep this brief, but I can promise nothing! Format #Num - Pos Player (Winter Rating) Current Level - Quick Summary Graduated #1 OF Trevor Larnach #2 C Ryan Jeffers #3 OF Alex Kirilloff DFA'd #18 2B Travis Blankenhorn #35 SP Dakota Chalmers Top 30 Prospects #30 - 2B Edouard Julien (Not Ranked) A - A former 18th round pick, Julien is raking at Fort Myers. Has a long way to go, but he's on my radar now. | | #29 - CF Gabriel Maciel (#24) A+ - Maciel got off to a rough start and has shown zero pop in his bat. He profiles as a Ben Revere type. | | #28 - 3B Seth Gray (#32) A+ - Gray has shown improvement at the plate and has a high .368 OBP. Part of that is because of 9 HBPs (hit by pitches). | | #27 - 2B Will Holland (#26) A - Got a late start and has been a bit shaky in a small sample size. | | #26 - SP Luis Rijo (#23) A+ - Got a late start, pitched in one game, and hit the IL with a forearm strain. This reeks of a lost season. | | #25 - SS Jermaine Palacios (NR) AA - Palacios is quite the story. He was the only prospect in the Odorizzi trade with the Rays, but he completely flopped in AA Montgomery. He signed back with the Twins in free agency and is hitting up a storm (.850 OPS with great OBP and some power) and he already profiles well as a defender. He always had a high ceiling, which earns him a spot in the top 30. | | #24 - OF Emmanuel Rodriguez (#29) Not playing yet. | | #23 - OF Alerick Soularie (#28) Not playing yet / injured. | | #22 - RP Yennier Cano (NR) AAA - Cano crushed AA with a 13.7 K/9 ratio and doesn't hand out too many walks. The 27 year old Cuban is now pitching at AAA and should debut in August/September for the Twins as a reliever. | | #21 - RP Edwar Colina (#15) On the 60 day IL after having bone spurs removed from his elbow. Still the organization's best reliever prospect, Colina missing a year of development is awful for both him and the Twins. | | #20 - C Ben Rortvedt (#20) MLB - He's filling in as the backup catcher, and as I speculated before, he's a strong defender who can't hit. He'll do better than .140, but he's always going to be a liability at the plate. | | #19 - SS Danny De Andrade (#25) Not playing yet | | #18 - 2B/CF Nick Gordon (#22) MLB - Gordon went from potential DFA candidate to a quality bench player. Even with almost 2 years off, his swing looks good and his speed gives him SB opportunities and can fill in as a CF. This is likely his ceiling, though. | | #17 - SS Wander Javier (#19) AA - Javier is looking better at the plate, but is still only hitting .692 OPS. His future may be as a backup SS who can field better than most, but can't hit. | | #16 - 2B Spencer Steer (#21) A+ - Steer is absolutely raking at Cedar Rapids with a .915 OPS, 10 HRs, and .405 OBP. He may earn a late promotion to AA and has potential to climb higher if he keeps hitting. | | #15 - SP Blayne Enlow (#16) A+ - Looked great in 3 starts, but then needed Tommy John surgery. The first of a bundle of quality starting pitcher prospects, this injury sets him back at least a year. | | #14 - 1B/DH Brent Rooker (#7) AAA - Rooker plummets down the rankings after looking terrible in his short MLB stint and getting passed up by the likes of Garlick, Refsnyder, Gordon (for MLB ABs, not outfield play). He's hit well in St. Paul (.925 OPS 11 HRs), but he turns 27 soon, and if he can't hit MLB pitching, he has no place on any roster. | | #13 - CF Misael Urbina (#14) A - Urbina has struggled at Fort Myers, but he's only 19. It's too early to be concerned. | | #12 - 3B Keoni Cavaco (#13) A - Cavaco is hitting better, though with no power and too many Ks. At just 20, he has a long ways to go. | | #11 - SP Bailey Ober (#33) MLB - Ober takes a massive leap up as I originally projected him as a reliever. He's looked better than expected in the Twins' rotation, and while he has been hittable and given a strict inning limit, he's been able to strike out some of the league's best hitters. If he get more innings under his belt, he could solidify himself as a decent MLB starter. | | #10 - SP Josh Winder (#27) AA - I initially rated Winder too low, as he's now dominating AA with a WHIP under 1.0, 10.7 K/9, and 5.4 innings per start. At this rate he will be able to graduate in 2022 and he profiles as a mid-rotation starter, not just a back-end guy. | | #9 - 1B Aaron Sabato (#9) A - Many thought Sabato might start at A+, but instead he starts at the bottom and he's been bad at the plate. A 33 K% in the minors is a big red flag. It is early, but like Rooker you have to wonder if his power-first approach will sink him at the plate. | | #8 - CF Gilberto Celestino (#10) MLB - Celestino went from AA to MLB in the span of two days, and unsurprisingly looked shaky at the plate. He needs more time to work on his bat, but 2022 will be his final option year (had to be protected from Rule 5 draft). It'd be nice to use Celestino as a Buxton substitute. | | #7 - SP Cole Sands (#12) AA - Like Winder, Sands looked very good at AA, albeit with a few too many walks. Unfortunately, he's on the IL with an undisclosed injury. | | #6 - OF/1B Matt Wallner (#8) A+ - Wallner was hitting at a ridiculous 1.005 OPS (.333/.384) before hitting the IL with a hamate bone injury. He did have a 38% K rate in that small sample size. | | #5 - 3B Jose Miranda (#17) AA - I mentioned last time that Miranda needed to take a big step forward, and that's exactly what he did. With an insane 1.0006 OPS (.348/.415), 12 HRs, and a microscopic 10% K rate, Miranda looks like the real deal despite his struggles in the lower minors. It's fair to debate if he can stay at 3B full-time, but his bat looks like it has MLB staying power. | | #4 - SP Matt Canterino (#11) A+ - Canterino looked flat-out unhittable until hitting the IL with elbow issues. Hope for the best, everyone. | | #3 - SP Jhoan Duran (#5) AAA - Duran has struggled with injuries and command so far, and has now been shut down with an elbow problem. This is looking like a lost season. | | #2 - SP Jordan Balazovic (#6) AA - After missing time with a back problem, Balazovic is ramping up and has been a bit shaky. He has nasty stuff, but needs to get more innings under his belt. | | #1 - SS/CF Royce Lewis (#4) Torn ACL - With my top three graduated, Lewis took over the top spot, but of course blew his ACL in Spring Training. He should be ready for the 2022 season where he will likely start in AAA. Rule 5 Eligible Prospects for Winter 2021: Royce Lewis Jermaine Palacios Jose Miranda Josh Winder Cole Sands Wander Javier Gabriel Maciel Blayne Enlow
    1 point
  13. Vodka Dave was a frequent contributor and brought quite a few laughs along the way. I haven’t seen a post in a long time. If you are creative give it your best shot. After all, it is an off day and you are bored enough to be reading this
    1 point
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