beckmt reacted to Cory Engelhardt in Organizational Depth: A Look at Pitching Throughout the Twins System
I 100% expect Varland to be a high leverage reliever, as I'm certain they will bring at least one starter in to complete the rotation.
I'm also really excited for Festa and Lewis and Ohl. I think all of them could theoretically get start(s) this year, and all have really exciting stuff.
Fun to see legitimate depth that isn't far away.
beckmt reacted to DocBauer in Twins CF In 2024...Is It Too Early To Talk About?
The season is not yet done, and the playoffs are not quite here yet. Still, there has been so much conversation about roster construction for said playoffs, along with speculation about guys coming back from injury...or maybe not coming back...that I often find myself already contemplating CF in 2024, and beyond, even if it would seem early.
FIRST, the Giant Elephant in the room: Buxton has been unable to play the position this season. And he had a recent shutdown in his AAA rehab when trying to make it happen for the remainder of the year. (Albeit, nothing has been ruled as of YET). Wishing something doesn't make it happen. Re-visiting something once again that hasn't happened is a fools errand. Even IF Buck is available to contribute to the playoff roster in any way as a DH/PH/PR on...much less play ANY CF...is yet to be determined. (It would be nice). I am focused on what is to come right now.
I'm sure Buxton will have some sort of additional cleanup procedure, at the least, followed by rest and rehab to try and get him ready for 2024, with fingers crossed. I would think that ANY availability to play CF on a part time basis would be welcome. But the Twins can't fill CF next year on hope. But it is hoped he might be part of the equation.
SECOND, as of now, early reports are CF isn't going to be blessed with a lot of good options in the FA market.
THIRD, while I don't subscribe to the "cheap ownership" idea...though I wish at times they would stretch just a little more...while $ is coming off the books, there are decisions to be made concerning options for both Kepler and Polanco. And while the FO hasn't done anything to cut payroll the past few years...and have even increased payroll...the team just might end up losing $ from whatever new TV deal is made post the Balley Sports debacle.
So with the table being set, it would appear the Twins have FOUR distinct options to shore up CF for 2024, if not beyond. In no particular order, they are:
1] Look to a FA. Bellinger is probably the #1 option there after a rebound season. But one would have to assume there will be competition for his services. I believe he made about $17M in 2023. Could he be signed for that? More? And how much more and how many years? With other decisions to be yet made, some intriguing options rising within the system, would this make sense for the Twins?
Might they look at bringing back Taylor again? Granted he'll be 33yo opening day next year, and his AVG was below his career norms, but his OB% wasn't too far off his career norms and his SLG% went up with 14DBLS and a career high 20 HR, as of NOW. Despite battling some injuries during the season, he still played outstanding defense and is 13-1 in SB so far this year. Speed and range and overall defense seem to still be intact. At $5M this year, and on the wrong side of 30, I doubt he'd break the bank on another year.
2] The Twins might trade for a CF. Perhaps someone young, perhaps someone older on an expiring deal. They've shown a tendency to make moves like this previously across the roster. Young means more draft capital, older means cheaper prospect cost. But ASSUMING Gray will reject the QO for a bigger deal the Twins won't want to match, they might re-sign Maeda for additional rotation depth/options. And if not, would they be looking for a similar Lopez kind of trade addition? If so, they might be more reluctant to move additional prospects. But then again, the trade for Taylor cost them nothing in regard to TOP prospects.
3] Maybe they should trust in their prospects? Austin Martin finished 2022 strong, and had a breakout AFL, though AFL numbers can be skewed a bit due to a general lack of top arms. And he battles some nuisance injuries early this year. But once healthy, his 54 games at St Paul...266PA and 218AB...produced a quad slash line of .271/ .396/ .417/ .812. He was also 16-3 in SB. While less than half a season, those numbers are pretty impressive. And the Twins have previously stated they felt he was a natural OF. Hilights have backed that up, though I appreciate he's not by any means a finished product yet. But when you have a top prospect who seems to have figured it out, and just might be ready, do you give him the shot? Did the FO learn enough this season about trusting in their young talent?
Additionally, despite having his entire season wrecked due to injury, Cellestino is healthy again and still quite young, I believe 24yo when next season starts. And he's out of options, IIRC. But there's talent there, albeit, talent that hasn't been allowed to develop on a natural curve due to injury and way too early promotion. And what if there's room to keep Gordon, also out of options I believe. Might he regain the resemblance of his 2nd half 2022 self? If so, he could be part of a temp solution, along with Celestino?
DaShawn Keirsey is a former high pick who was an older than normal draft selection due to a massive college injury. He struggled a bit early in his pro career, had a couple setbacks, and then found himself in 2022. He was promoted to AAA too late in the opinion of many of us...St Paul was doing just fine, but no excuse...and continued to perform well after said promotion. He did dip in his BA and overall OPS from .850 to a still good .762 number. The past 2yrs, he's suddenly delivered on some power, though he will never be a slugger. He's reported to be a natural and outstanding defensive CF with SB speed. (31-5 this year doing so). He might not be ready NOW, but might be a solid role player soon. And he might be a decent bench alternative to Martin in the future as well.
It's also possible the Twins might convince Stevenson to return, off the 40 man, as a depth option, for next season.
Is there enough "prospect depth" and available talent to run with what they have rather than spend $ and prospect capital for someone else?
4] Time to move Lewis to CF, or begin the transition to doing so at least part time. Polanco and Julien can handle 2B, Polanco can also play 3B. Lewis will split time at 3B A fully healthy Miranda in 2024 might just be ready to produce again. And Lee doesn't have to be pressured from DAY ONE to be ready.
Lee might surprise and be ready from the start. I don't buy it. As good as he is, and will be, I'm not ready to rush him after ONE full season and a couple months in 2022. Meanwhile, Lewis has more than enough natural skill set to be an excellent CF. And he flashed it in the AFL previously. STOP with injury factors! His previous injury in the OF was a weird take off/landing and had nothing to do with hitting a wall. His knee is no more likely to be hurt again charging or diving and planting in the INF as it would be running down a fly ball in the OF!
MY OPINION? I would look at Taylor on a decent 1yr deal for $6-7M knowing we could move him to someone in need. It gives the prospects time to settle in at St Paul and not feel pressured.
WHAT I WANT? Trust in Martin and everyone else mentioned for depth and "turn to" options as needed and focus on the rotation and pen and maybe, finally, adding an above average RH bat. I understand CF is important. But whether it's Taylor, or trusting in the prospects, I'd rather worry about the rest of the roster and not the probable #9 hitter.
I apologize for this being long, and early, but I believe this IS a very serious concern getting ready for 2024 that has, inadvertently, been brought up with recent roster construction.
beckmt reacted to Johnny Ringo in Jorge Polanco's Late-Season Surge Puts Twins in a Tight Spot
With all respect, the only consideration is whether Jorge is worth $9.5 million next year. (The option less the buy-out.)
Without a doubt, the answer is yes. This can viewed independently of whoever else is on the roster. Polanco or the others can be dealt. If nothing else, Jorge can be traded at no expense for prospects. I know we don't like those. :)
I would ask Julien to do nothing over the winter but take grounders and see what you have in the spring. Maybe Lee will step into the job. But I certainly would have Polanco in my back pocket regardless.
beckmt got a reaction from Strombomb in Guardians 5, Twins 2 (F/10): Gray's Gem Goes to Waste in Extras
i don't claim to know the rules, but if they ask the 3rd base umpire, it was clear Naylor swung and did not get to first, (because of the umps). I don't know how an inadvertent play stop is ruled, but Rocco should have had Jeffers throw to first and then ask the 3rd base umpire if he swung (he clearly did). Now this probably gets both managers appealing the play and the ruling would be interesting. Maybe the Twins get a do over be cause of inadvertent umpire error.
Maybe someone who knows better than me can weigh in.
beckmt reacted to Dman in Right Now Is (Unfortunately) the Right Time to Trade Trevor Larnach
If it is a good return I am all for it, but I do think he can be slightly above average defensively in left and I think given time his bat will come around. Don't need to give more good bats away. If it isn't this year then next might be tough as well as Rosario and Rodriguez will be moved up and one step away as well. I don't think he has to be traded at the deadline but if someone wants to offer us a good deal I would be all ears.
beckmt reacted to Rik19753 in Twins Trade Jorge Lopez to Marlins for Dylan Floro
I think this is a great move.
While it seems like most in this comment section see Floro as a middle or low leverage reliever with upside, that does not do him justice. It would be a shame to write him off just because of his 4.54 ERA.
He's definitely not in the Hader tier, but I would put him in the next tier, which is the "not elite but very darn good" tier.
Just looking at his underlying numbers, they are very similar to Jax. Floro has just been hurt by an enormous BABIP of .397, but his batted ball profile suggests that he has done nothing to deserve it.
Floro: 24.0 K%, 6.4 BB%, 0.45 HR/9, 55.1 GB%
Jax: 24.7 K%, 6.5 BB%, 0.43 HR/9, 57.9 GB%
I wouldn't be surprised if the FO has checked off their "acquire high leverage reliever" box off their to do list after this move.
beckmt reacted to Dman in Twins Minor League Report (7/19): Several Top 20 Twins Prospects Have a Big Day
Lee had some tough BABIP luck the beginning of this season hitting line drives right at guys. HIs K rate and Walk rate never really wavered the ball just wasn't dropping in as much as hoped. The more recent Harder contact has helped as well and while doubles are great, home runs are even better and hitting them generally gets you to MLB faster. Lee has double digit HR's not elite by any stretch but like most of his game rock solid. Nice to see the numbers finally working in his favor a little bit.
Personally given the consistent approach at AA I think he technically is ready for MLB right now but no reason to hurry him and getting used to a lot of the junk stuff AAA pitchers throw would be a good final test. Hopefully they move him up in August so that he has a chance to maybe help the team down the stretch or at least early next year.
beckmt reacted to tony&rodney in Twins Minor League Report (7/19): Several Top 20 Twins Prospects Have a Big Day
Just an observation - Brooks Lee looks ready for AAA. Watching his at bats this season on numerous occasions this season (milb.com), Lee has turned from softer contact to driving the ball with authority on a consistent basis. I'm not seeing his games in person and thus not fully in tune with his progress, but Lee seems ready for AAA.
beckmt reacted to LA VIkes Fan in Rumor: Rosenthal: The Twins Are Weird and That Makes the Deadline a Challenge
It is weird because you feel like there need to be some changes but the available players don't project as clear "upgrades" either. Is Aaron Hicks better than Joey Gallo? Maybe, maybe not. It's very hard to see anyone who is available or allegedly available in trade as a clear upgrade to who we already have unless we're willing to pay a significant prospect price.
I actually think some of the upgrades we need will come as a result of guys returning from injury. Lewis is a clear upgrade at 3d and will upgrade the lineup playing every day and hitting in the 3-6 holes. Polanco is additive on offense in the top 6 spots once we figure out how to play both him and Julien every day (hint, give Polanco some innings at 1B and 3B in the rehab, and put Julien at 1B with Kirlloff in LF a couple of times this week to see how it works.) Stewart and Theilbar should be upgrades in the bullpen over Sands and Pagan/Balazovic when they get back. We've got to put Kuechel on the roster by 7/31 or lose him - is he an upgrade over Maeda? Can Maeda go to the bullpen?
I think the best way for the Twins to upgrade is to play the guys they have and keep the young productive guys like Kirilloff, Lewis and Julien in the every day lineup once everyone is available. That may mean losing Gallo (I think Kepler's .267/.330/.522 over the last 30 games/90 ABs saved his job), and it may mean either sending Wallner back down or choosing between Castro and Solano unless someone is hurt. Still, hard to see any other way to upgrade without a huge prospect cost. It looks to me like that's a cost we can't afford after last year's trades.
beckmt reacted to stringer bell in Rumor: Rosenthal: The Twins Are Weird and That Makes the Deadline a Challenge
If one healthy player needs to be demoted or DFAed, I would agree it should be Gallo. He's on a one-year deal and his positive contribution is so sporadic. Also, he's Exhibit A of "so many strikeouts".
beckmt got a reaction from Larry Janisewski in Week in Review: Stuck In Their Ways
maybe not a rebuild, but a reset. Firing Popkins will accomplish little but is a start. My mother-in-law used to say about preachers the message wears thin after about 7 years and change should be made, use that from Rocco.
As far a players, DFA Gallo, send Miranda down, bring up Lee (can't be any worse). He may not be ready, but I would bring up Martin and try and inject some speed and push into this lineup. At least make the pitchers worry when someone gets on base about the steal. I think if the FO felt that Wallner or Larnach would be any better they might well be here.
Offer Gray and Maeda reasonable extensions during this break, If they do not take them, at least explore a trade. There are many teams looking for pitching and as July 31 comes closer, you might well get an overpay for a starter. I might also add Ryan to this list as he seem like a pitcher who can beat the bad clubs, but not the good.
Not quite ready to give up on the FO, as the pitching pipeline seems like it might work, just have to find hitting.
beckmt got a reaction from RpR in Week in Review: Stuck In Their Ways
I think you would be looking at a high level propect a AA or AAA from a club in a win now mode. We must get better and have questions to if either Laurnach or Wallner would be better or more swing and miss. Otherwise bring up the kids, could not be any worse.
beckmt reacted to gman in Week in Review: Stuck In Their Ways
Lewis 3B (Farmer until Lewis is back)
Jeffers C(60% of games/Vazquez 40%)
Taylor/Kiersey - (platoon until Martin is healthy)
Bench- Buxton (or DL), Castro, Vazquez, Solano
Trade if possible Gallo, Kepler for relievers or low A prospects
Hope that Stewart & Theilbar are back soon, maybe Paddock in August.
Shoot for playoffs without as much swing & miss in the lineup. Ride the starting pitching. Try to score 3 runs in 4 games a week or 4 runs in 3 games a week. Maybe even occasionally 5.
beckmt reacted to Cap'n Piranha in Week in Review: Stuck In Their Ways
Not to quibble, but the Twins now have the 3rd best team ERA, with 3 more teams within a tenth of a run.
Jax has one more pre-arb year, so if the goal is to target 2026 for competitiveness, that means he only has two years of team control at that point. I think you could get a solid package for him, given all that team control.
I'm not pissed about 2023 performances, I'm realistic that this isn't happening because of massive injury or bad luck issues. It has to be assumed that some of these players might be displaying their new normal.
I don't care about a division title, just to get embarrassed in the playoffs. In the past two weeks, other than 1 game, we've seen this team get completely outclassed by BAL and ATL. I have no confidence this current team can compete, and there's no reason to expect things to be massively different next year either. I don't want to turn into the Angels who keep running a slightly different version of a deeply flawed team year after year, and before you know it, we haven't been in the playoffs for 6 years, and the farm system is still ranked 17th.
beckmt reacted to Dman in Nygaard Mock Draft v. 2.0
I think the top three are set at Crews. Skenes and Langford. I am not 100% sold that the high school kids will go 4 and 5 and I still think the Pirates might go Clark at number 1 if he is willing, and he should be, to take a discount to go number 1. Personally I think Pittsburgh should take Skenes as right and left fielders can be found later in drafts. Granted the two available could be generational bats but an ace pitcher is generally much, much harder to find. Still there is a lot of risk going pitcher as arm problems can negate any value the pick had. Still having a stopper type starter is what they will need to compete against the better teams so they should go big or go home IMO.
I still think Texas might go with Teel. They are weak at the catcher position and his bat should play well and likely move faster. I could also see them going pitcher and Clark wouldn't be a bad choice either but I think Teel makes the most sense for them IMO.
The rest of the draft is anybody's guess. Just way too many variables and guys are ranked really closely so just depends on what a team wants and what level of risk they want to take on.
I like the mock it looks as solid as anything I have seen online. Thanks for sharing it with us!
beckmt reacted to BiggestRoccoFan in Please fire the entire coaching staff, except Pete Maki!!
I have been saying for 3 years that Rocco needs to go and I am running out of patience watching this brand of baseball. Royce goes 4-4 last night and sits today??????????????????????????????????????????????
beckmt reacted to chpettit19 in Blue Jays 7, Twins 6: Only the Twins Could Lose Like This
Julien looks like he can be a really nice hitter in the bigs, but he's a shining example of why defense matters. So many plays that he just can't make, and when you can't make the plays it makes your pitcher throw more, and leads to the BP having to come in earlier than it should. Correa still should've made the throw on the double play, but if Julien can field it and get it to him smoother, and quicker, Correa has time to set himself a little as he throws. The play up the middle on Vlad with Bichette at first where Julien tried to back hand it wasn't the easiest play in the world, but when you're shifted up the middle, and the ball is 10 feet to your right, and not particularly well hit, you need to turn that into an out. Lewis' throw on Vlads grounder to 3rd needs to be an out (lots of free trips to 1B for Vlad today). Defense matters, and today was a great example of it.
And Pagan still needs to go. 3 high leverage appearances in 66 games isn't a lot, but he's blown all 3, and as the season gets deeper, and you get into the postseason, you can't keep playing with a short pen every night because you have a guy who can only pitch low leverage spots. They need to upgrade the pen. And DFA Kepler. There's no reason those 2 are on the team anymore. Time for the FO to step up and do their jobs.