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Cody Pirkl

Twins Daily Contributor
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  1. Like
    Cody Pirkl got a reaction from Minny505 in Ronny Henriquez Has Earned a Shot   
    Normally I'd agree but I think we've seen that the alternative to going to the young, unproven upside arm is likely the Twins signing a Steve Cishek or Hunter Strickland level reliever and letting them stick on the roster with a 5 ERA until August just because they're a veteran. 
    If you want to argue for a competition between Henriquez and say Josh Winder in the spring, sure. I just think that if they bring in an external option for the bullpen it'll be someone who shouldn't be signed by a competing team and winds up retiring after one last awful season in a Twins uniform circa Joe Smith. They don't meaningfully invest in the bullpen which is fine but if they're looking to fill out the fringes, Henriquez is a better candidate than whatever 35 year old is still a free agent in February.
  2. Like
    Cody Pirkl got a reaction from roger in Ronny Henriquez Has Earned a Shot   
    Normally I'd agree but I think we've seen that the alternative to going to the young, unproven upside arm is likely the Twins signing a Steve Cishek or Hunter Strickland level reliever and letting them stick on the roster with a 5 ERA until August just because they're a veteran. 
    If you want to argue for a competition between Henriquez and say Josh Winder in the spring, sure. I just think that if they bring in an external option for the bullpen it'll be someone who shouldn't be signed by a competing team and winds up retiring after one last awful season in a Twins uniform circa Joe Smith. They don't meaningfully invest in the bullpen which is fine but if they're looking to fill out the fringes, Henriquez is a better candidate than whatever 35 year old is still a free agent in February.
  3. Like
    Cody Pirkl got a reaction from glunn in Ronny Henriquez Has Earned a Shot   
    By the time Ronny Henriquez debuted in 2022 many fans were likely already tuned out, which is fair. His late season appearance however shouldn’t be overlooked when it comes to the role he could play in 2023.
    Image courtesy of Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports  
    Ronny Henriquez was acquired in the Mitch Garver deal and was seen as a middling starting pitching prospect. The ERA results weren’t there, but at 21 years old, Henriquez posted a 25%+ K rate at every stop in the minors. His generous listing at 5’10 raised questions about his ability to stand up to a starter’s workload, and those concerns escalated when he posted a near 6 ERA in AAA out of St. Paul’s rotation in 14 starts. His strikeouts continued to impress however, and he was finally moved to a relief role toward the end of the season.
    As the Twins faded out of contention, they finally began cycling in younger talent instead of pitchers such as Joe Smith and Tyler Thornburg. In the case of Henriquez, what we saw was very encouraging.
    As we’ve seen with Twins pitchers who boast plus sliders, the Twins weren’t shy about having Henriquez go back to the well on his best pitch. He threw his breaking ball nearly 50% of the time as his primary pitch, and in his short stint it proved to be lethal. Despite being by far his most used pitch, the slider induced a whiff rate of over 31%. Not only did it avoid being hit, it allowed a .136 batting average and .227 slugging % when hitters did make contact. His secondary pitch being the changeup only drew a 22.6% whiff rate, but it too allowed a sub .200 average and sub .300 slugging % against as well. Henriquez flashed two plus offerings to get both left and right handed hitters out consistently.
    The issue with Henriquez was the fastball. His main concern in St. Paul was the long ball, and the culprit was front and center when he joined the Twins. In his admittedly limited action, his four seam allowed a .400 batting average and staggering 1.400 slugging percentage. Hitters teed off on the pitch, and it’s not difficult to see why:
    The good news on the rocky debut of his fastball is that the adjustment is obvious and likely easily fixed: Keep it out of the heart of the zone. The heat map at the top of the zone is fantastic. Adjusting the trend in the middle of the zone could raise his game to new levels in a bullpen role.
    Henriquez shouldn’t be an offspeed needy, fastball avoidant pitcher. The 55 scouting grade on his heater is easily justified, as the pitch has been noted to have tremendous ride and can often be pushed into the upper 90s when needed.
    While the slider was the eye popping weapon he showed in his debut, it’s possible the fastball could become just as big of a pitch moving forward despite how bad it looked through his first 11+ innings. Even pushing the pitch to average would make Henriquez a legitimate bullpen piece.
    Despite being just 22 years old, it can be argued that Henriquez’s days in the minors should be over. With his three-pitch mix one could argue Henriquez should still be working toward a future rotation spot. The issue is that Henriquez is currently on the 40-man roster and would likely be 7th on the starting pitching depth chart at best. He’d have to have a good bit of success in AAA before being entrusted in such a role with the big league club. Much like what’s been argued with fellow top prospect Matt Canterino, it seems like a waste of time to slow cook prospects who appear to be able to help the club right now in pursuit of the very small chance that they can latch on as a starter.
    It’s not entirely clear what the Twins offseason plan is regarding the bullpen, but we can assume nothing big is coming. At most they’ll likely sign a Joe Smith caliber pitcher to fill some innings and try to milk some value out of. They may make a waiver claim on a pitcher who does one thing well in pursuit of the next Matt Wisler. Instead we should be hoping for the Twins to turn to one of their young upside arms, a commodity that has been very difficult for this front office to come by.
    Rather than spending a few million on another veteran reliever to spend the last year of their career in Minnesota, why not turn to the 22 year old with two plus offspeed pitches and a high 90s fastball? Henriquez could take a low leverage, possibly even multi inning role and get a chance to work his way up the depth chart. If he struggles he can be optioned for another arm as opposed to the yearly bounce back candidate signing that sticks on the roster far too long due to their veteran status.
    Last year the Twins may have leaned too heavily on their internal pitching production. This year they have much more in place, and gambling on Henriquez in a minor role seems like a worthwhile bet. Ronny Henriquez should be in the Twins Opening Day bullpen
     

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  4. Like
    Cody Pirkl got a reaction from Riverbrian in Let's Worry About the Lineup This Winter   
    Every offseason seems to have the same blueprint in Twins Territory: find some pitching. While far from well off on arms, for once it can be argued that the Twins should be a bit more worried about the lineup.
    Image courtesy of Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports  
    Talks of coaxing a high end starting pitcher to Minnesota are swirling as should always be the case when premier pitching is available, but the Twins don’t have an entire rotation to overhaul as they have in recent years. Adding an ace to the group of Sonny Gray, Tyler Mahle, Joe Ryan, Kenta Maeda, and Bailey Ober would be a massively positive move, but with a fair amount of pitching talent and depth in Minnesota, perhaps we should be turning more attention towards getting lineup help.
    As things stand, Carlos Correa is not currently a Minnesota Twin. Though inept in clutch spots for much of the season, a massive chunk of the Twins offense will be missing should Correa find another home. The Twins set a floor at shortstop with a savvy addition of Kyle Farmer, but the dropoff from a player who was 40% above league average offensively to one that was 9% below in Farmer would be felt on a daily basis. Farmer being the Opening Day shortstop would be far from a disaster, but in order to compete, the Twins would need to massively supplement their position player group elsewhere.
     
     
    Headed into 2023, the Twins have a fun group of young, high upside hitters that have some questions to answer including Alex Kirilloff, Trevor Larnach, Matt Wallner, and eventually Royce Lewis. It’s a similar position to the one they were in last winter with the pitching staff. Having filled out 40% of the rotation with Dylan Bundy and Chris Archer and another 40% of the rotation with two rookies in Joe Ryan and Bailey Ober, the Twins gambled on contributions from their young pitching which had proven nothing yet.
    It was an unmitigated disaster aside from Ryan. Top prospects such as Jordan Balazovic cratered in AAA. Josh Winder was ineffective and had recurring shoulder issues. Having done so in just about every season of his career aside from 2021, Bailey Ober once again missed massive amounts of time. They didn’t have the floor they thought they did.
     
     
    The Twins need to avoid gambling on their player development in 2023 as much as possible. They’ve drastically overestimated their ability to produce quality regulars in recent years. And while the most recent bursted bubble was on the pitching side, gambling on unproven, often injured players such as Larnach, Kirilloff, and Lewis to keep an MLB roster afloat simply cannot be the game plan at this point. They also had to trade away several up-and-coming possible impact hitters as a result of their recent miscalculations.
    Also consider the health of the team. Beyond the young players having missed time in 2022, players such as Jorge Polanco no longer appear to be locks to play 150+ games. Byron Buxton’s injury risk will always be a consideration. They also no longer have Gio Urshela to add production to the fringes of the roster, and unfortunately at this point anyone expecting any kind of offensive competence from players like Max Kepler are likely going to be very disappointed.
     
    In short, the Twins lineup isn't a force to be reckoned with. It does appear to have some upside and depth, but the trick is getting said lineup to the threshold of “quality” which likely requires multiple more additions. Perhaps it is adding Correa or one of his fellow free agents such as Xander Boegarts . The heavily left-handed outfield could also use another right-handed option such as Mitch Haniger. Perhaps they’ve even liked what they’ve seen from Jose Abreu across the division enough to bring him in as a veteran RBI machine that can DH and cycle into first base.
    While several creative moves are certainly on tap for the winter, it may be time to recognize that the current rotation has the possibility of helping a team to a playoff run. It’s hard to say the same about the position player group. For once perhaps fans should pivot off of the “Can he pitch?” replies to every acquisition the Twins make. It’s time to worry about the bats.

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  5. Like
    Cody Pirkl got a reaction from glunn in The Trade Target that Fixes The Twins Outfield   
    While far from a major problem, the Twins could use a shake up in the outfield headed into 2023. Could a journeyman on the Brewers be the answer?
    Image courtesy of © Michael McLoone-USA TODAY Sports  
    The Twins are full of talent in the outfield but are a bit left-handed heavy. It’s also begun to feel like long-time Twin Max Kepler’s time is running out in Minnesota. Effectively swapping him out for a right-handed platoon option seems like a relatively small move that could pay off big time for a Twins roster which is fighting for a return to relevance.
    Hunter Renfroe has never been a big name in his seven seasons but has been nothing less than a solid player for some time now. In 2022 he had a career season, slashing .255/.315/.492 in Milwaukee. Having already bounced between four teams in his seven years, could yet another trade help return the Twins to the promised land?
     
     
    Complementing the Corners
    Between Kepler, Alex Kirilloff, Trevor Larnach, Nick Gordon and Matt Wallner, the Twins outfield is overly left-handed, and we’ve seen teams abuse that late in games the last few seasons. Only Byron Buxton and the recently re-signed Kyle Garlick balance things out, and recently neither has been reliable in terms of their availability.
    Renfroe would not only be a welcome addition in terms of production (.258/.350/.492 vs LHP in 2022), but in terms of reliability. The aforementioned Buxton and Garlick combined to play just 158 games in 2022. Renfroe played in 125 even being used in somewhat of a platoon role in Milwaukee. While Garlick in particular fills the “lefty masher” role, he’s been an easy out in his career against right-handed pitching and has been healthy enough to play in just 102 games for the Twins the last two seasons.
    Renfroe on the other hand was 20% above league average against same-handed pitching in 2022 while still filling the same role Garlick does, with an injury history that suggests he’d be more available on a day-to-day basis moving forward. While Garlick and the Twins recently agreed on a contract for 2023, the amount is miniscule, and if they could swing a trade Renfroe, being an upgrade over Garlick is an easy argument to make.
     
    The Twins would be well positioned with a lefty masher who’s capable against righties and can fill in at either corner to complement their many left-handed options. It seems like a win-win.
    Change is Coming
    Though nothing is definitive at this time, there’s been some talk of Kepler’s time in Minnesota coming to an end. Filling his spot with someone like Renfroe makes too much sense. Nearing 30 years of age, we know what Max Kepler is. While capable of providing gold glove caliber defense, it’s safe to say this value is outweighed by his extremely limited offensive profile. Long understood to be an incapable hitter against left-handed pitching, Kepler has recently failed to post even league average offense against righties.
    Too often, his at-bat results in pulling a ball either straight into the ground to second or first base, or popping out to shallow right field. He has failed to adjust his approach at all, and is no longer even a league average hitter. Yet he’ll continue to start day after day due to his defense.
    A pivot to Renfroe adds so many dimensions to a Twins' lineup in need of a breath of fresh air. In addition to Renfroe’s superior bat, he was also worth six Defensive Runs Saved in left field and two in right field. A slight defensive downgrade is possible, but that step down will be far outweighed by the need Renfroe would fill in the Twins lineup. 
     
    In terms of financial cost, the trade off also is not that restrictive. After making a bit under $8m in 2022, Renfroe will likely be due $10ish million in 2023. Assuming the Twins can find a home for Kepler’s $8.5m salary, it won’t cost them much. It’s also possible they could get creative and include a player such as Gio Urshela in a trade to the third base needy Brewers in a deal for Renfroe, which would unload even more money.
    With the Twins having high free agent aspirations at positions such as shortstop, the trade market may be the place to look for offensive help. With Teoscar Hernandez recently being traded for a 28-year-old reliever and a minor leaguer, a Renfroe trade continues to look more and more affordable. The Twins should be looking to shake up the outfield with a more diverse set of players. Renfroe may just be the answer. Do you agree?
     

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  6. Like
    Cody Pirkl got a reaction from glunn in Twins Daily 2022 Awards: Most Improved   
    The Twins technically did improve on their record in 2021, and with that came several players taking steps forward. Nobody made a bigger leap than late-bloomer Nick Gordon. Before we pay our dues to the Twins former top prospect, several others deserve some love as well.
    Honorable Mentions:

    Griffin Jax: 72.1 IP, 3.36 ERA, 26.9% K rate, 6.9% BB rate, 0.9 fWAR, 0.9 bWAR
    At the end of 2021, it became clear Jax lacked the pitch mix to thrive as a starter so he made the switch to the bullpen. It’s hard to expect more than what he provided the Twins. Arguably a Top 3 reliever for the team for most of the year, Jax turned to his wipeout slider nearly 50% of the time and the pitch was dominant in every way. Headed into 2023, it’ll be interesting to see if Jax can continue improving in his new role.
    Luis Arraez: .316/.375/.420, 8.3% BB rate, 7.1% K rate, 3.2 fWAR, 4.4 bWAR
    It’s hard for one of the team’s best players over the last few years to get “most improved” consideration but Arraez has earned it. Not only did he take his offense to the next level by winning a batting title and slugging a career-high eight home runs, but he also had an underrated season defensively. After struggling to stick at any one position, Arraez found himself playing first base for the first time in his career and more than held his own. Though his hamstring caused him issues at season’s end, he played a career-high 144 games. Hopefully, we can see more of the same moving forward.
    Gilberto Celestino: .238/.313/.302, 9.2% BB rate, 22.2% K rate, 0 fWAR, 0.5 bWAR
    To be fair, Celestino didn’t look to be an MLB-caliber player in 2021, and so even his modest 2022 numbers got him some love as one of the Twins most improved players. He showed flashes throughout the year that hint at his ability to at least become a solid fourth outfielder. He put up comfortably positive defensive metrics in center field across the board, and any kind of power development would be huge. Still just 23 years old, Celestino may very well find himself on this list again next year.
    Twins Daily's Most Improved Player Nick Gordon: .272/.316/.427, 4.3% BB rate, 23.7% K rate, 1.5 fWAR, 1.6 fWAR
    So much to be impressed by with Gordon’s 2022 season. Early calls to jettison him off the roster in favor of Royce Lewis were quickly rescinded, as Gordon found himself in a trial by fire due to injuries and came out on the other side looking like a legitimate piece of the Twins future. Gordon showed contact ability and power like never before and even did a little bit of damage against left-handed pitching on occasion. Though the Twins tailed off at the beginning of September, they’d have been out of the race well before without their former 2014 1st round pick.
    Gordon pivoted off of his longtime position in the middle infield and is likely a better defensive outfielder at this point, a testament to the work he put in and his raw physical ability. The Twins outfield has plenty of left-handed hitters, but Gordon is a nice complement to the hulking sluggers such as Trevor Larnach and Matt Wallner. He seems like a favorite to fill a platoon-type role moving forward, finding himself in the lineup regularly when a right-handed pitcher is on the mound.
    One thing that should really be appreciated about Gordon is the joy he plays with. Perhaps stemming from the long path to get to this point, Gordon isn’t afraid to wear his heart on his sleeve in every situation. From a huge smile on his face following a big hit to his visible frustration when being pulled for a pinch hitter, you just have to love how invested he looks no matter the situation. 
    With team control until 2028 and a versatile skill set, Nick Gordon may just be getting started. In the midst of a disappointing season, the development he’s shown was truly a bright spot. For that reason, join us in congratulating Nick Gordon as Twins Daily’s Most Improved Player!
     
     

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  7. Like
    Cody Pirkl got a reaction from Richie the Rally Goat in Should The Twins Look to Upgrade From Kyle Garlick?   
    Kyle Garlick is headed into another offseason having produced admirably while missing a good chunk of games due to injury. As the Twins hopefully head toward a roster shakeup, could they move on from their lefty-mashing specialist?
    Image courtesy of Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports  
    2019 seems like a long time ago, back when the Twins’ eyes would light up seeing a left-handed pitcher take the mound. The outfield in particular has become so left-handed heavy that the team’s performance against southpaws as a whole has taken a hit. Trevor Larnach, Max Kepler, Alex Kirilloff, and Nick Gordon all saw significant time in 2022 and the Twins ranked 20th in OPS matching up against lefties.
    A handful of outfield prospects remain, though not of the right-handed variety. We’ve seen Matt Wallner, and another top outfield prospect, Emmanuel Rodriguez, hits from the left side as well. In other words, help in this department is not on the way internally. For that reason, bringing back the cheap and known commodity Kyle Garlick makes sense… right?
    Garlick’s overall numbers fail to impress, but the Twins brought him in to hit lefties and he’s done that well. Posting an .805 OPS and 128 wRC+, six of his nine homers came in these matchups. When healthy, Garlick was penciled into the top of most lineups in an advantageous matchup.
    One issue at this point, however, is Garlick’s health. After playing in just 36 games in 2021 due to a core muscle injury, he again missed significant time, playing 66 games in 2022 before rib and wrist issues shut his season down and limited his effectiveness. Now over the age of 30, is it fair to count on Garlick suddenly becoming healthier?
    Also, consider the state of the Twins outfield. Byron Buxton is going to miss time. Kirilloff and Larnach have also done so in each of the last two seasons. Max Kepler may be on the outs, but if he remains with the team it seems a foregone conclusion that he’ll be limping his way through September every season. Garlick’s complementary right-handed bat may be canceled out by his inability to stay on the field.
    Even if healthy, it’s important to keep in mind that Garlick is a one-dimensional player. He was brought in to mash lefties and that’s about where his capabilities end. Though a nice potential role player on a competing team, it’s fair to ask whether a team coming off back-to-back losing seasons can justify giving a roster spot to such a player. Without much defense to provide, Garlick also posted just a .631 OPS against right-handed pitching. On a roster such as the Twins where players are simply going to miss time, Garlick is bound to find himself in inopportune situations as we saw this year. In those cases, the negative impact Garlick has on games begins to overshadow the somewhat rare opportunities he was brought in to fill against lefties.
    It’s possible the Twins bring Garlick back. He’s cheap and his skillset does complement their roster. Big changes are needed, however, and the Twins days of pretending they have the baseline of a first-place roster capable of carrying one-dimensional role players may be in the past. A roster shakeup may be coming. Many have called for parting ways with Max Kepler. While the Twins have prospects such as Wallner ready, they could also part with someone like Garlick and bring in a right-handed bat with more than just one skill to offer.
    After parts of two seasons, we know what Kyle Garlick is. While he has his flaws, his career will certainly carry on with another team should the Twins move on. The question is whether they should. Is Kyle Garlick the perfect match for the Twins left-handed heavy outfield, or should they look for an upgraded version of his skillset?
     

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  8. Like
    Cody Pirkl reacted to IndianaTwin in Can We Rely on Trevor Larnach?   
    To clarify, though Larnach has posted 1.2 WAR this year in 51 games and Gordon has posted 1.5 in 118 games and though Larnach is more than a year younger, you’re suggesting that Gordon makes Larnach unnecessary? 
    Help me understand. Cheap depth is awesome and in the Twins budget structure, necessary. With what they have shown, both are more necessary than Kirilloff, but I’m not calling him unnecessary either.
    Give me an outfield with Buxton, Kepler, Larnach, Kirilloff (also spending time at 1b) and Gordon, with Celestino the next man up, and I’m feeling pretty chipper about that part of the roster. 
  9. Like
    Cody Pirkl got a reaction from glunn in Is Joe Ryan Who We Thought He Was?   
    Joe Ryan looked like a front end starter to begin the year and has slowly trended in the wrong direction throughout the summer as many analysts predicted. As the Twins bottom out it’s fair to ask: Is Joe Ryan who we thought he was?
    Image courtesy of Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports A 7th-round pick taken by Tampa Bay, Joe Ryan was always an interesting prospect. Throwing his fastball as high as 70-80% of the time in the minors, he always dominated with solid ERAs, eye-popping strikeout numbers, and acceptable home run rates. Still, scouts just didn’t buy the long-term performance with Joe Ryan due to his lack of any kind of consistent secondary offerings to pair with his best pitch. As 2022 rolls on, he’s shown more and more that perhaps the league has caught up to him. Were we too quick to anoint him as a staple for the front of the rotation?
    When considering this question, there are a few factors we need to keep in mind.
    Offspeed Debut
    Joe Ryan was essentially a fastball-only pitcher in the minors because he could get away with it. His fastball is deceptive, and it appears that despite his numbers tailing off as the season went on, the league never really figured the pitch out. He’s thrown it three times as much as any of his other offerings and the pitch has allowed a .183 BA against and .328 slugging %. In order to maintain that effectiveness, however, Ryan has finally had to incorporate more offspeed pitches.
    Unfortunately, it could be going better. Ryan has allowed a .500+ SLG on every pitch but his fastball this season. As his home run issues have ballooned, the slider is typically the culprit. Having allowed nine HRs on 1,229 fastballs thrown, Ryan has allowed eight on just 431 sliders thrown. In fairness, this is the first Ryan has really had to rely on offspeed stuff, and it’s safe to still call his secondary pitches a work in progress that could easily improve.
    Bad Luck
    I hate chalking anything up to bad luck but Joe Ryan actually has dealt with quite a bit of it this season. Ryan posted a 2.28 ERA in eight starts leading up to May 21. He then missed three weeks with COVID and has since posted a 4.78 mark in 16 starts. His velocity and command were both notably lacking for some time following his absence as he was clearly hit hard by the virus considering the amount of time missed. He was due for a bit of regression, but things certainly seemed to snowball after the IL trip.
    Ryan also has an interesting gap in the expected results of his pitch mix versus the actual results. He’s allowed a SLG of .531 on his slider with a .368 expected SLG. His .538 SLG on his changeup is a far cry from the .443 expected mark. Even his curveball has allowed a .524 SLG compared to a .354 expected SLG. It’s hard to say what’s causing this discrepancy, but the expected stats point to Ryan being a much more effective pitcher than what his (still respectable) results have been.
    He’s a Rookie
    It’s easy to forget Joe Ryan is a rookie under control for five more seasons because the Twins have relied on him so heavily. Very rarely does a pitcher debut and provide consistent results. Many called the Twins front office out this spring for essentially hanging the hopes of the season on two pitchers with less than a year of experience (Ryan and Bailey Ober), and they turned out to be correct. While Ryan has worked out better than Ober due to the volume he’s provided, the Twins were always playing with fire.
    Ryan getting his feet wet to the tune of a low-4s ERA in what will probably be 140ish innings in his rookie season would typically be viewed as a massive success. Unfortunately, the Twins relied on him being a front-of-the-rotation starter. As he builds up a bigger workload and makes adjustments back to the league, it’s easy to see him building off of an up-and-down rookie season and at least providing middle-of-the-rotation value to the team in future years.
    In short, don’t let the Twins' disappointing end to the season affect your opinion of Joe Ryan. Whether he’s the pitcher we thought he was depends on what you were expecting. As fun as the idea was of a rookie coming up and co-leading the rotation with Sonny Gray en route to a comeback season, that was always the least likely scenario. Instead consider that Ryan has had a solid-to-good debut season, a rarity in Twins territory when it comes to pitchers.
    As he soars past his career highs in innings pitched, keep in mind that Joe Ryan still has a good chunk of his Twins career left to adjust and improve, and he’s got a nice foundation to build off of from his 2022 season. 

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  10. Like
    Cody Pirkl reacted to Unwinder in Is Joe Ryan Who We Thought He Was?   
    I feel like Ryan, Mahle, Gray, Ober, Winder, Maeda, Varland, and Paddack (though he'll be coming in later) make up the best starting point for a season that I've seen in a while. Don't see any room at all in there for a bargain-bin reclamation project. Obviously this isn't bulletproof since we have all these guys now and a bunch of them are injured, but if I'm the front office I'm spending my 2023 Happ and Shoemaker money on some relievers who can pitch more than one inning to make up for all these guys who are only going to cover five innings.
  11. Like
    Cody Pirkl reacted to FlyingFinn in Is Joe Ryan Who We Thought He Was?   
    Lots of foul balls when he can't get that third strike results in long AB's and less innings.
    Ryan looks durable and should be a solid pitcher for us for years.
  12. Like
    Cody Pirkl reacted to gman in Is Joe Ryan Who We Thought He Was?   
    I think with Gray, Mahle & Maeda as the top 3 next year, then Ryan can be a very could 4. Like most players give him until his 3rd or 4th year to figure out who he really is. I think he will be a guy who can pitch 180-200 innings and give very consistent good starts.
  13. Like
    Cody Pirkl got a reaction from wabene in Is Joe Ryan Who We Thought He Was?   
    One thing I didn't mention is that in addition to Ryan's good expected numbers on the slider, it's also his best whiff pitch at 30%. All of his offspeeds have performed poorly this year, but I'm very encouraged by the floor he's established on the slider after only one year of really using it. Hopefully the command of it improves.
  14. Like
    Cody Pirkl got a reaction from LA VIkes Fan in Is Joe Ryan Who We Thought He Was?   
    One thing I didn't mention is that in addition to Ryan's good expected numbers on the slider, it's also his best whiff pitch at 30%. All of his offspeeds have performed poorly this year, but I'm very encouraged by the floor he's established on the slider after only one year of really using it. Hopefully the command of it improves.
  15. Like
    Cody Pirkl got a reaction from RJA in Is Joe Ryan Who We Thought He Was?   
    One thing I didn't mention is that in addition to Ryan's good expected numbers on the slider, it's also his best whiff pitch at 30%. All of his offspeeds have performed poorly this year, but I'm very encouraged by the floor he's established on the slider after only one year of really using it. Hopefully the command of it improves.
  16. Like
    Cody Pirkl got a reaction from DocBauer in Is Joe Ryan Who We Thought He Was?   
    One thing I didn't mention is that in addition to Ryan's good expected numbers on the slider, it's also his best whiff pitch at 30%. All of his offspeeds have performed poorly this year, but I'm very encouraged by the floor he's established on the slider after only one year of really using it. Hopefully the command of it improves.
  17. Like
    Cody Pirkl got a reaction from flpmagikat in Is Joe Ryan Who We Thought He Was?   
    One thing I didn't mention is that in addition to Ryan's good expected numbers on the slider, it's also his best whiff pitch at 30%. All of his offspeeds have performed poorly this year, but I'm very encouraged by the floor he's established on the slider after only one year of really using it. Hopefully the command of it improves.
  18. Like
    Cody Pirkl got a reaction from Linus in Is Joe Ryan Who We Thought He Was?   
    One thing I didn't mention is that in addition to Ryan's good expected numbers on the slider, it's also his best whiff pitch at 30%. All of his offspeeds have performed poorly this year, but I'm very encouraged by the floor he's established on the slider after only one year of really using it. Hopefully the command of it improves.
  19. Like
    Cody Pirkl reacted to wabene in Is Joe Ryan Who We Thought He Was?   
    Contrast Ryan's rookie season with Berrios' and he looks pretty damn good. Yes Berrios was a few years younger. Still Ryan can improve just as Berrios did. Ryan seems to have regained strength since his COVID bout and in his last start was hitting 95 with the fastball, maybe even 96 once, I can't remember. Anyway he needs to work on the off-speed stuff, but there's no reason he can't improve. 
  20. Like
    Cody Pirkl reacted to Squirrel in Is Joe Ryan Who We Thought He Was?   
    I think he settles in as good 3. There was a poll in the Twins Talk forum a few weeks ago asking where we thought Ryan would be, and that’s how I answered. It’s his rookie year. He started well and then I think players adjusted to him. I also think his illness took a little out of him, too. It’s probably too soon to ask if he’s who I thought he would be but so far I think he is. He’s had some bad starts but that happens. I expect him to be solid going forward.
  21. Like
    Cody Pirkl reacted to mac098 in Is Joe Ryan Who We Thought He Was?   
    I think he is at best, a low 2 high 3 just because of his make-up and consistency. Now I think another of development with the pitching staff and he should have a servicable secondary pitch. Of course, this all depends on what kind of money the organization is willing to spend this off-season on FA pitching and what they have coming up from the minors.
     
    As of right now he is a very durable player who has minimal time on the IL. So that is something he has going for him. So I would say, unfortunately, for the Twins, he is about the best option we have for the front end of the rotation. Nobody else has stepped up and shown that they deserve the Ace position on the team. But with the amount of pitchers that aren't working deep into the game anymore, it almost seems as if the "Ace" is going away from the game outside of few players who have been around for a long time (Scherzer, Verlander, DeGrom just to name a few). I just think its a shift in the game that has been happening for a few years now. 
  22. Like
    Cody Pirkl reacted to tony&rodney in Is Joe Ryan Who We Thought He Was?   
    Ryan has done much better than I expected. Rookie pitchers mostly have moments of difficulty when they pitch through their first year. He is a 26 year old rookie who has to rely on command and control, which he has done reasonably. The better hitters across MLB often don't bite as much on that high fastball from Ryan which reduces his effectiveness against the best lineups. IMHO this makes him a mid rotation (#3/#4) pitcher if he can stay consistent and throw more innings. Ryan has been a pleasant find for the Twins.
  23. Like
    Cody Pirkl got a reaction from flpmagikat in Is Joe Ryan Who We Thought He Was?   
    Joe Ryan looked like a front end starter to begin the year and has slowly trended in the wrong direction throughout the summer as many analysts predicted. As the Twins bottom out it’s fair to ask: Is Joe Ryan who we thought he was?
    Image courtesy of Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports A 7th-round pick taken by Tampa Bay, Joe Ryan was always an interesting prospect. Throwing his fastball as high as 70-80% of the time in the minors, he always dominated with solid ERAs, eye-popping strikeout numbers, and acceptable home run rates. Still, scouts just didn’t buy the long-term performance with Joe Ryan due to his lack of any kind of consistent secondary offerings to pair with his best pitch. As 2022 rolls on, he’s shown more and more that perhaps the league has caught up to him. Were we too quick to anoint him as a staple for the front of the rotation?
    When considering this question, there are a few factors we need to keep in mind.
    Offspeed Debut
    Joe Ryan was essentially a fastball-only pitcher in the minors because he could get away with it. His fastball is deceptive, and it appears that despite his numbers tailing off as the season went on, the league never really figured the pitch out. He’s thrown it three times as much as any of his other offerings and the pitch has allowed a .183 BA against and .328 slugging %. In order to maintain that effectiveness, however, Ryan has finally had to incorporate more offspeed pitches.
    Unfortunately, it could be going better. Ryan has allowed a .500+ SLG on every pitch but his fastball this season. As his home run issues have ballooned, the slider is typically the culprit. Having allowed nine HRs on 1,229 fastballs thrown, Ryan has allowed eight on just 431 sliders thrown. In fairness, this is the first Ryan has really had to rely on offspeed stuff, and it’s safe to still call his secondary pitches a work in progress that could easily improve.
    Bad Luck
    I hate chalking anything up to bad luck but Joe Ryan actually has dealt with quite a bit of it this season. Ryan posted a 2.28 ERA in eight starts leading up to May 21. He then missed three weeks with COVID and has since posted a 4.78 mark in 16 starts. His velocity and command were both notably lacking for some time following his absence as he was clearly hit hard by the virus considering the amount of time missed. He was due for a bit of regression, but things certainly seemed to snowball after the IL trip.
    Ryan also has an interesting gap in the expected results of his pitch mix versus the actual results. He’s allowed a SLG of .531 on his slider with a .368 expected SLG. His .538 SLG on his changeup is a far cry from the .443 expected mark. Even his curveball has allowed a .524 SLG compared to a .354 expected SLG. It’s hard to say what’s causing this discrepancy, but the expected stats point to Ryan being a much more effective pitcher than what his (still respectable) results have been.
    He’s a Rookie
    It’s easy to forget Joe Ryan is a rookie under control for five more seasons because the Twins have relied on him so heavily. Very rarely does a pitcher debut and provide consistent results. Many called the Twins front office out this spring for essentially hanging the hopes of the season on two pitchers with less than a year of experience (Ryan and Bailey Ober), and they turned out to be correct. While Ryan has worked out better than Ober due to the volume he’s provided, the Twins were always playing with fire.
    Ryan getting his feet wet to the tune of a low-4s ERA in what will probably be 140ish innings in his rookie season would typically be viewed as a massive success. Unfortunately, the Twins relied on him being a front-of-the-rotation starter. As he builds up a bigger workload and makes adjustments back to the league, it’s easy to see him building off of an up-and-down rookie season and at least providing middle-of-the-rotation value to the team in future years.
    In short, don’t let the Twins' disappointing end to the season affect your opinion of Joe Ryan. Whether he’s the pitcher we thought he was depends on what you were expecting. As fun as the idea was of a rookie coming up and co-leading the rotation with Sonny Gray en route to a comeback season, that was always the least likely scenario. Instead consider that Ryan has had a solid-to-good debut season, a rarity in Twins territory when it comes to pitchers.
    As he soars past his career highs in innings pitched, keep in mind that Joe Ryan still has a good chunk of his Twins career left to adjust and improve, and he’s got a nice foundation to build off of from his 2022 season. 

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  24. Like
    Cody Pirkl reacted to RJA in Is Joe Ryan Who We Thought He Was?   
    Good article.  I love Ryan but I don't think he will ever be a front end starter unless his secondary stuff improves, both in quality and location.  Given the fact that they were desperate to have quality starters on the team, fans rushed to annoint him a star last year based on a few games.  Now that the bloom is off the rose a bit, some fans are disappointed in him.  Even if he doesn't improve his secondary offerings, he will still be a quality part of the rotation.  Let's hope he develops into more, but appreciate his talents even if he ends up as a 3 or 4.   
  25. Like
    Cody Pirkl got a reaction from Danchat in Has Jorge Lopez Been a Disappointment?   
    Some of the best relievers in baseball were awful starting pitchers which is what Lopez was up until this year. Josh Hader, Aroldis Chapman, etc. In terms of Twins, look at Taylor Rogers or even Griffin Jax this year. Once you take a starting pitcher, cut down their pitch mix, and add them to the bullpen where their velocity ticks up, their numbers as a starter are worthless.
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