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birdwatcher

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birdwatcher last won the day on October 18 2019

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  • Birthday 06/19/1952

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  1. Like you, Mike, I tend to think the takes from MLR and Dman and others reflect what many of us felt at the time. Frankly, any one of the next half-dozen selections would have given me more comfort. MLR described it as possibly the FO getting "cute". I describe my own nagging suspicion this way: I wonder if they're prone to occasional bouts of hubris that encourages them to get cute, like at the trade deadline a couple years back. I'm willing to withhold judgment on their drafts and on a few other questionable things, on the basis of some of the really positive moves they've made. As for Cavaco, I don't have an opinion, just a general observation about what I see as a deficiency in talk about prospects. I think there's a giant chasm between an athlete's theoretical or assumed tools and and a player's skills. To me, the bet with Cavaco, like it was with Buxton for example, is that his inferior skills eventually catch up to his presumably superior tools. But roight now, it's sure hard to see how his tools are superior to Stott or Corbin, or how Priester's or Zack Thompsons vastly superior skills won't compensate for any what they might lack in tools. I always feel a higher comfort level with prospects whose tools and skills aren't miles apart.
  2. Last year, I spent 15 minutes and scanned the 40-man rosters of every team to count the number of former Twins out there on other teams. The number? 36. That's not a typo. And what struck me was that about 20 MLB teams had at least one former Twin. I don't think there were a half dozen of those players that you would have added to the Twin's 26-man at the expense of removing the player we had at the same position, pitchers included. And there probably were not more than 10 guys that you would have jettisoned someone on the 40-man to make room for them. What did I conclude from that? Well, almost nothing, other than that there sure are a lot of Harpers, Magills, and Granites floating around out there.
  3. Position players are a safer bet than pitchers given similar perceived ceilings. This is due to the increased injury risk, of course, but also because the performance volatility, year to year, is higher for pitchers. Don't ignore the reality that frontline starters can be acquired via trade, and they can be developed. I don't know the statistics, but my specualation is we could look at two groups: the first being a random sample of 1st round pitchers, and second, a group of the top current pitchers of the same quantity. I'd bet that the number of failures among the draftees would be about the same as the number of successful pitchers in the second group selected in the 3rd round or later. So, once again, we have a bunch of pitchers among our top ten prospects about which we're excited. (Note that none of them are 1st round draft choices). And once again, we'll probably see a higher failure or "disappointment" rate among the pitchers than the position players. So yeah, Mike, I think there's merit in selecting the position player. You once suggested Gausman might be a better bet than Buxton, and despite the incredibly bad misfortune endured by Buxton, no one would make that trade, right?
  4. No question that Lewis brings uncertainty both at SS and to a much lesser extent, with his hitting skill development (he has the hit tool). But let's not forget that he was regarded by many experts to be in the same category as all four of the stud pitchers, Greene, Gore, McKay, and Wright, with Wright thought to be the surest thing among the pitchers. You wanted Gore, not Greene back then. You may end up having guessed right. Fangraphs gives Gore and Lewis a 60FV, and Hunter will surely get an upgrade from his 50 FV soon. But remember, many draft analysts thought Brendan McKay was a better bet than Greene or Gore-it was that close of a call, I argued at the time that the chances were very very good that at least one, and quite possibly two of those four pitchers would end up better than Lewis. The problem? Guessing which one. The jury hasn't reach a verdict yet. Greene poses injury risk that could derail his career permanently. Gore is struggling with command of both his breaking pitches and is no longer universally regarded as a surefire ace. Kyle Wright and Brendan McKay have negative WAR so far. Wright has been shipped back to the minors after 6 pathetic innings in 2021. So yes, with the luxury of new information, one can argue that Greene has a higher ceiling than Lewis, but the opposite argument has equal merit IMO. Wouldn't it be interesting to hear an honest take from the FO? I think your Enlow take is possibly slightly flawed, because, even though they maybe ended up not needing to, they easily could have been out of room to pull off the Enlow signing had they spent $7M instead of $6M by taking Gore, McKay, or Greene. None of those guys was exactly enamored with the prospect of being a Twin, and maybe their agents would have been encouraged to take a harder line, who knows. Again, it's my guess that at least one of those three will be a better player than Lewis. Your guess was once Gore, and now it's Greene, both excellent guesses, but guesses just the same, which I think was at the heart of the Twin's rationale for drafting Lewis, probably still the surest bet. Again, currently, Fangraphs has Lewis and Gore at 60FV, Greene at 50FV, and McKay down to 40+ with five pitchers in the loaded TBR system ranked higher. Bottom line: it's not all that baffling that Lewis and Martin are viewed as prospect equals and ahead of Balazovich, Duran, SWR, or anyone else.
  5. I'd add Enlow to that list, and it's a relief that we can eventually move on from parading one low-ceiling starter after another out there (Smeltzer, Dobnak, Barnes, Ober, Jax et al). Every one of those guys represents more promise than the likes of those prospects and free agents like Happ and Shoemaker. I actually chose to take this season off and spend it looking at birds with my son instead. And if this off-season is a bust, I might give it another year to return. Frankly, I find guys like Sano and Rooker to be unwatchable. I want them to move those two, plus Donaldson and Cave. I'd be all for having a "tough out" lineup 1 through 9.
  6. Yes, that's the general rule of thumb. The exception might be when a replacement is better than the player being traded, with plenty of backup support. I'm not 100% certain that this is the case, but Kirilloff could in fact be an upgrade over Sano by the deadline. Dealing Polanco carries greater risk. In any case, if I were GM and this criteria was met, I'd STILL only make a trade if there was an overpay in place.
  7. I'd phrase it differently: the Twins made a quality deision, and it remains to be seen if the results match up.
  8. I think you're right about this. Is it too much to dream that Sano and/or Polanco come back strong and are traded for serious prospect capital at the deadline? That's my aspiration were I the GM.
  9. I really think you're on to something here, Nash. We have three teams in the division that have now had the benefit of selecting elite prospects for a number of years. KC, CWS, and DET have zero excuse for NOT being much better. Early draft choices are underrated IMO. Also underrated: financial capacity. So, for example, Luis Robert fits CWS's budget, but not the budget of the other teams in the division. Not to be a Debbie Downer, but my gut is telling me that what I'm watching is not encouraging for Twins fans. I'll spare y'all the dozen or so indicators I think I'm seeing.
  10. Shane Mack comes to mind for me. But I do agree that, as infrequent as it is, losing someone like Baddoo is bound to happen to teams with a ton of depth in the system. Frankly, I'd be happy to see Baddoo have a Shane Mack-like career. It's not probable though. BTW, the Tigers are probably going to be respectable this year. I think the entire ALC may be under-estimated.
  11. Short answer, for me, is yes. Why? Because, despite their shortcomings and inexperience, in tandem, they are possibly an upgrade over Rosario. Secondly, Kirilloff, I believe, is the real deal, and Larnach and Celestino may be too. This sets the club up to convert surplus assets (Rooker? Cave? Garlick? Wade... oops nevermind) into future assets while simultaneously upgrading a position mid-season, and importantly, a position that was NOT compromised when Rosario was allowed to walk. I tend to think the concerns about either/both Buxton/Kepler having a bad season should at least be balanced against an equally reasonable idea of either/both taking another step, or at least holding their own. Regardless of this, I'm thinking the depth of AAA and AA prospects has adequately been calculated in the FO's assessment of it all.
  12. Yeah, I think all of this, plus the reality that he's a liability in the field, not just a little worse than, say, Garlick. My guess is that Cave and Garlick are viewed by the FO as half-season 2021 placeholders for Kirilloff and/or Larnach/Celestino. Rooker is probably mostly regarded as an injury replacement for Cruz in 2021, maybe his permanent replacement beyond this year if he can cut down a little on the K's.
  13. The injury plague continues for this organization. One top prospect after another, delayed or derailed it seems. Snakebit much? Must be horribly frustrating for Lewis, and for others instrumental in his development as well.
  14. I just glanced at FanGraphs and see Lewis ranked at #23, so they clearly still like him a lot. Gore looks like he's going to be terrific too. But I would imagine Falvey's amateur scouts feel pretty good that their collective recommendation that the FO pass on Hunter Greene, Brendan McKay (both though by a majority of experts to be a better choice than Lewis) looks sound. Kyle Wright appears to be a solid major leagur player, but the "right" #5 overall selection. And given the higher injury risk associated with pitchers, I wonder if the Twins would trade Lewis for Gore straight up. Probably, but not without much consideration. BTW, FG has both Greene and McKay ranked just outside of its top 100.
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