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  1. One of my favorite annual threads on the site. Let’s stay updated on ex-Twins in the news... This is a start of a list, and feel free to add on as they pop up over the course of the season! Trevor May - NYM signed in the offseason. Eddie Rosario - CLE Sean Poppen - PIT in AAA Tyler Clippard - ARI on the 60 Day IL Rich Hill - TB Sergio Romo Experience - OAK Matt Wisler - SF rough start to his 2021 Ildelmaro Vargas - CHC in DFA limbo Ehire Adrianza - ATL made their opening day roster Akil Baddoo - DET made their opening day roster Marwin Gonzalez - BOS CJ Cron - COL who knew?! Ronald Torreyes- PHI Kyle Gibson- TEX rough start to his 2021 Tyler Kinley - COL who knew?! John Curtiss - MIA Fernando Rodney Experience - one phone call away! Bartolo Colon - crushing slow pitch softball pitches
  2. The Twins host Tampa Bay on a Friday the 13th evening. This is also the start of a reunion weekend for the '91 Twins. Who will be gray, who will have gained weight and who will have a new trophy spouse? Well, we probably won't know about the latter, but we will see many of our old favorites and remember when the team won playoff games. Personal moment: I shook Jack Morris' hand in Fort Myers several years ago. Jack shook my hand and kept walking. Pretty sure that moment was more memorable for me than him. Tampa is the first place team in the tough AL East, the third straight first place team the Twins will face. Minnesota has won five of seven versus Houston and Chicago. Tampa is also the darling of MLB, with their ability in the last several years to be competitive (or better) despite payroll limitations and a terrible home stadium.Their front office is viewed as smart, progressive and forward-thinking, relying on sabermetrics more so than on traditional baseball strategies. Interesting stats-the Rays lead all of MLB in strikeouts by their hitters, but still are third in runs scored despite only having the 13th best team OPS in baseball (lower than the Twins). Of course, Rocco was on the Tampa Bay staff before being hired to manage the Twins. The Twins will send out Michael Pineda who has been pretty solid since returning from the Injured List. The Rays starter will be Shane McClanahan, lefthander, who has pitched very well this month. Notable players for the Rays include former Twins Matt Wisler, JT Chargois and of course DH Nelson Cruz. Both Wisler and Chargois have been effective out of the TB bullpen. Cruz has had a few good games, but his overall numbers haven't been up to his standards. That will probably change by the time the Twins are done with the Rays. One more personal note, I'll pay a lot more attention to Rays first baseman Ji-Man Choi. A new acquaintance of mine is good friends with Choi. They spent the All-Star break together playing golf, among other things. I have a bit more perspective on a foreign player coming to the US to play and not speaking English fluently. Go Twins! As of 4:30, the lineups are available. Here you go...... PLAYER W-L ERA WHIP IP H K BB HR S. McClanahan 6-4 3.75 1.25 84.0 77 99 28 11 M. Pineda 4-7 3.83 1.20 82.1 82 70 17 13 Tampa (70-45) HITTERS H-AB RBI HR SB AVG B. Lowe2B 86-377 65 26 5 .228 W. FrancoSS 37-153 22 5 2 .242 N. CruzDH 99-360 60 23 3 .275 R. ArozarenaLF 105-388 52 16 11 .271 J. Wendle3B 88-318 38 7 6 .277 Y. Diaz1B 85-335 39 8 0 .254 K. KiermaierCF 59-244 24 2 8 .242 M. MargotRF 79-307 47 9 10 .257 M. ZuninoC 48-235 44 23 0 .204 Twins (50-65) HITTERS H-AB RBI HR SB AVG J. Polanco2B 112-409 62 21 9 .274 B. RookerLF 16-102 6 4 0 .157 J. Donaldson3B 69-285 45 16 0 .242 M. GarverDH 36-162 28 13 0 .222 R. RefsnyderCF 21-68 10 2 0 .309 M. Sano1B 65-311 46 19 1 .209 T. LarnachRF 58-253 27 7 1 .229 R. JeffersC 34-163 27 9 0 .209 A. SimmonsSS 68-312 24 3 1 .21
  3. Twice former Twin Craig Breslow was promoted to Asst GM in Chicago, working alongside former Twin Randy Bush. https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2020/11/cubs-promote-craig-breslow-assistant-general-manager.html
  4. Where are they now is not about old and retired, but the players on current rosters who at one time were on the Twins Roster. Just curious how they are succeeding and if we wish we had any of them back. Here are the hitters with their stats after the Solstice: I chose BA, OPS, and WAR for the comparative stats: Aaron Hicks, Yankees, 251 BA, 811OPS, 1.7 WAR Danny Valencia, Orioles 290, 822, 1.2 Wilson Ramos, Tampa Bay, 296, 796, 1.5 Carlos Gomez, Tampa Bay, 197, 609, -0.5 John Hicks, Detroit, 279, 759, 0.4 Niko Goodrum, Detroit, 244, 786, 1.1 Denard Span, Mariners, 292, 784, 0.3 Kendrys Morales, Blue Jays, 245, 714, -0.2 Danny Santana, Braves, 667, 1.750, 0.1 (yes sss) Kurt Suzuki, Braves, 279, 821, 1.4 Pedro Florimon, Phillies, 263, 814, 0.5 Chris Giminez, Cubs, 130, 353, -0.1 John Ryan Murphy, Diamondbacks, 239, 769, 0.7 Do you want any of them back? Collective WAR - 8.1 Teams that chose to have an ex-Twin pitching did not do as well. I have made my list simple, W - L, ERA. Jaimie Garcia, Blue Jays, 2 – 6, 8.16 ERA Blaine Boyer, Royals 2 – 9, 11.76 Liam Hendricks, A’s 0 – 0, 4.50 Bartolo Colon, Texas, 4 – 4, 4.91 Annibel Sanchez, Reds, 3 – 3 2.55 Brian Kintzler, Nationals, 1 -2, 13 holds, 4.45 Randy Rosario, Cubs, 3 – 0, 1.76 Brian Duensing, Cubs, 1 – 3, 4.50 Anthony Swarkzak, Mets, 0 – 1, 3.48 Phil Hughes, Padres, 0 – 0, 6.23 The only surprise is how well Rosario is doing. The Twins gave him a too young, too short try, and then DFA's him. The Cubs saw something they liked. Would you trade Belisle to get him? Who would you have back? And if you can trade one for one, who would he replace?
  5. So this is interesting. Not sure what else to make of it. With speed as his biggest asset, I'm not sure pitching is the best place for him but best of luck. http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2016/01/dodgers-sign-jordan-schafer.html
  6. With Opening Day having come and gone, I made a check of all the major league rosters. I always check for ex-Twins and this year there are 28. Here is a list: Drew Butera, Samuel Deduno, Pat Neshek, Sam Fuld, RA Dickey, Liam Hendriks, Danny Valencia, AJ Pierzynski, Matt Garza, Kyle Lohse, Carlos Gomez, Anthony Swarzak, Michael Cuddyer, Wilson Ramos, Delmon Young, Francisco Liriano, Vance Worley, Ben Revere, Rene Rivera, Craig Breslow, David Ortiz, Jason Marquis, LaTroy Hawkins, Justin Morneau, Kendrys Morales, Joe Nathan and Garrett Jones. Lots of catchers, first basemen, outfielders and DHs. In addition I checked the number of teams that carried three catchers (5) and 13 pitchers (5). Two teams are listed with only 11 pitchers, but I believe they both will activate their 12th pitcher when he starts a game in the first week.
  7. Maybe I'm cranky because I have to be to work early this morning, maybe it's because the coffee isn't the right temperature, maybe it's because it's late October and we know what kind of weather is coming in the next couple months, but I'm tired of a few things posted here on Twins Daily. 1) Spell the names right! If you don't like Milone, don't like Milone, not Millone or Malone or whatever. Same for Herrmann, Pressly, Schafer or Parmelee. It is May, not Mays and Meyer not Myer, Meyers or Myers. 2) Every roster vacancy can't and won't be solved by bringing back an ex-Twin. Further, their successes at different locations might be a matter of timing, luck or circumstance. Also, there needs to be a statute of limitations on ex-Twins. Goodness, it's been well over a decade since they let Papi go. I don't want to go back to Graig Nettles about regrets for letting good players go. 3) I'll probably and perhaps rightly get ripped for this, but let's see what guys who had injuries can do when they are healthy. Three pitchers come to mind--Pelfrey, Nolasco, and Milone. All three pitched poorly, all three later revealed they were pitching with injuries and all three are question marks. I am in favor of all three getting their chance to show what they can do when healthy in the spring and perhaps beyond. 4) The narrative of "four straight ninety-loss seasons" is well established. While we all want better, it isn't that front office (including the GM) is sitting on its hands. By my count, there are seven players remaining from the 2011 team and four of them (Plouffe, Parmelee, Oliveros, and Swarzak) were bit players in '11. Mauer (as a catcher), Duensing (mostly rotation), and Perkins (set-up guy) were with the team in different roles than they are now. Just because they have turned over the roster doesn't eliminate the FO from criticism, but there has been change. So far, it hasn't worked out on the W-L ledger. Rant concluded. Have a wonderful day!
  8. In 2013, there was a tight race for the batting championship and the surprise winner was ex-Twin Michael Cuddyer. Cuddy has been injured much of this season and won't be a factor in this year's race. However, two ex-Twins have been at or near the top of the NL hitting leaderboard for the last month. Justin Morneau has enjoyed the NL and playing at Coors Field. He has spent most of the last month as the batting average leader and currently is running second. Morneau came out of last night's game with an intercostal injury. Significantly, he has just enough at-bats to qualify for the batting championship, even if he doesn't take another swing the rest of the year. Josh Harrison, a man without a position to start 2014, is currently leading the pack in the National League. With a three-hit game last night, he currently is at .318, three points ahead of Morneau. Harrison didn't play every day early and has played second, some shortstop, and third base as well as the outfield for the Bucs. He needs 20 plate appearances to qualify for the batting championship. Ben Revere had a couple of days as the hitting leader. He's currently in a 3-26 spin that might take him out of the batting race. He stands at .307. One candidate to win the batting championship is probably off almost everyone's radar. Corey Dickerson of the Rockies started the season as a platoon guy, but is hitting a Coors Field-aided .309. Dickerson needs to average more than four plate appearances per game to qualify, but has been playing every day since the All-Star break. None of these four guys would have gotten much mention to win a batting championship at the start of the season. Two guys who would get some consideration are also in contention, running third and fourth--Andrew McCutchen (.311) and Buster Posey (.310) are also right there in the race. There are some other factors in this race. The Rockies and Phils are out of the race, so Morneau, Dickerson, and Revere can play to enhance their batting averages and the managers can, as well. So Morneau and Revere probably won't face the Kershaws of the world, and if any of them gets a lead in the race in the last couple weeks, they could be shut down. Harrison, Posey, and McCutchen are in pennant races. Their teams have to win at all costs and individual awards aren't even on the same page. In addition, Harrison needs 20 plate appearances to qualify and if it matters, Dickerson needs 64 (in 15 games), so if he's in the race until the last day, he'll need to be in the lineup every day. Finally, Dickerson and Morneau have the advantage of playing home games at Coors Field, easily the best hitting park in baseball. I expect a couple of four-hit home games for one or both of those guys.
  9. Probably the most (positively) surprising team in MLB has to be Colorado. The Rockies were among the biggest disappointments last year and looked like a sure bet to be fighting with San Diego to stay out of the basement of the NL West. Somehow Colorado has won 13 of their first 17 games. Dexter Fowler is putting up great numbers, CarGo and Tulo are two of the better hitters in baseball and a couple of other young guys are adapting pretty well to Mile High baseball. My favorite Twin of all time, Michael Cuddyer, is off to a great start. He's hitting .357 with 1.089 OPs--4 homers and 13 RBI. He also is playing well in the field, starting at first and right field and leading baseball with three assists from right field.
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