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  1. Down in South Beach tonight the Minnesota Twins proved victorious over the hapless Miami Marlins. Sitting at a local brewery for the latest Gleeman and the Geek event, the question was whether or not the away team would cap off the night with a deadline deal. Then it happened, the Cleveland Indians sent Trevor Bauer packing. Much like his heave over the center field wall in Kansas City, Mike Chernoff flipped his pitching asset to the National League. Now, it’s your move Derek Falvey.Seemingly an odd decision for the Indians to move Bauer in hopes of landing immediately usable talent, a situation presented itself in which they were able to do just that. Yasiel Puig comes to Cleveland fresh off a boxing match in Cincinatti, while Franmil Reyes and Logan Allen join from the west coast. The Indians acquire two immediate big league assets at a position of need, and two thirds of the deal brings significant team control. If you’re keeping score at home this one is a big time win for the AL Central division foe. With the ball firmly in Derek Falvey’s court, it’s on the head honcho of the Twins front office to decide what the response looks like. Recent reports suggest Minnesota has bowed out of the starting pitching market, and there’s been ample belief that some of the biggest relief arms are unobtainable. Only touting Sergio Romo to this point, a race again the July 31 3pm CT deadline is officially underway. The Big Guns While Bauer falls in this category he certainly wasn’t a lock to be dealt. Apparently the San Francisco Giants are listening to the Astros on Madison Bumgarner but it’s still undetermined whether the rental swaps teams. Noah Syndergaard turned in an 11 strikeout performance on Tuesday night which suggests that nothing is imminent and that he’s as dominant as ever. Zack Greinke is really the only other pitcher of this ilk and his no-trade clause is going to be a hurdle in almost any negotiations. Dominoes in Relief After the Toronto Blue Jays took pennies on the dollar for starter Marcus Stroman it appeared the market had softened a bit for sellers. Then the Atlanta Braves acquired reliever Chris Martin Tuesday, but it cost them former first round pick, and previous top 25 prospect, Kolby Allard. After a tough, and brief, major league debut last season Allard has spent all of 2019 at Triple-A. He’s just 21 years old and under team control until 2025. That’s an incredibly steep price to pay for a 33-year-old having his first dominant year. The Answer Ahead I don’t know that the Twins will fill all of their current 40 man openings (presently at 37), but there’s zero doubt that a move has to be made. Romo was a nice start, but he seems to represent the floor and is only a single piece for a bullpen that needs to complete a full puzzle. Having been involved on virtually every name the market has flushed out, Falvey and Thad Levine are approaching decision making time. On Wednesday the Twins will need to figure out whether an arm like Edwin Diaz (reportedly an ask of Andrew Benintendi was suggested) or Kirby Yates is the move, or if they can survive with the likes of Daniel Hudson. I’m not sure that either of those avenues are the right answer, with the ideal path lying somewhere inbetween. What certainly can’t happen is that Minnesota whiffs and wastes the opportunity that lies in front of them. The reality is that this is a trade deadline of significant importance for the Minnesota Twins for the first time in nearly a decade. Although it’s understandable to still have a long term vision, nothing is guaranteed and opportunity currently lies in the immediate future. How this front office goes about the next handful of hours will shape 2019 and beyond, but it will also be a chapter in Twins history that we likely revisit often. How would you go about the next few hours? What are some hopes and expectations for the day? Where do you believe the intentions are for what lies ahead? More From Twins Daily Is Alex Kirilloff Expendable?Reviewing MLBTR’s Top 75 Trade CandidatesWhat If The Twins Don't Go Big This Year?Deadline Rewind: A Progress Report on the Twins 2018 Trade Deadline AdditionsTwins Trade Deadline: Final TouchesTwins Moving on From SP Trade Targets?What Sergio Romo Brings to the Twins BullpenCould the Twins Afford to Take on Zack Greinke’s Contract?Trade Deadline Thread: The Rumor Mill is Working OvertimeTrade Deadline Topics: Prospects, Scouting, RumorsTrade Deadline Thread: What To Do About the Rotation?The Gauntlet 1.2; A Complete Breakdown of the Top Relief ArmsFor Enlow and Other Minor Leaguers, “No One Is Safe” At Trade DeadlineJeremy's Deadline SeriesLet's Make A Deal, Part VI: GM For A DeadlineLet's Make A Deal, Part V: Are We Getting Noah Syndergaard or Someone Else?Let's Make A Deal, Part IV: The SellersLet's Make A Deal, Part III: The AmmunitionLet's Make A Deal, Part II: PayrollLet's Make A Deal, Part I: 2020 Click here to view the article
  2. Seemingly an odd decision for the Indians to move Bauer in hopes of landing immediately usable talent, a situation presented itself in which they were able to do just that. Yasiel Puig comes to Cleveland fresh off a boxing match in Cincinatti, while Franmil Reyes and Logan Allen join from the west coast. The Indians acquire two immediate big league assets at a position of need, and two thirds of the deal brings significant team control. If you’re keeping score at home this one is a big time win for the AL Central division foe. With the ball firmly in Derek Falvey’s court, it’s on the head honcho of the Twins front office to decide what the response looks like. Recent reports suggest Minnesota has bowed out of the starting pitching market, and there’s been ample belief that some of the biggest relief arms are unobtainable. Only touting Sergio Romo to this point, a race again the July 31 3pm CT deadline is officially underway. The Big Guns While Bauer falls in this category he certainly wasn’t a lock to be dealt. Apparently the San Francisco Giants are listening to the Astros on Madison Bumgarner but it’s still undetermined whether the rental swaps teams. Noah Syndergaard turned in an 11 strikeout performance on Tuesday night which suggests that nothing is imminent and that he’s as dominant as ever. Zack Greinke is really the only other pitcher of this ilk and his no-trade clause is going to be a hurdle in almost any negotiations. https://twitter.com/TBrownYahoo/status/1156257320659066880 Dominoes in Relief After the Toronto Blue Jays took pennies on the dollar for starter Marcus Stroman it appeared the market had softened a bit for sellers. Then the Atlanta Braves acquired reliever Chris Martin Tuesday, but it cost them former first round pick, and previous top 25 prospect, Kolby Allard. After a tough, and brief, major league debut last season Allard has spent all of 2019 at Triple-A. He’s just 21 years old and under team control until 2025. That’s an incredibly steep price to pay for a 33-year-old having his first dominant year. https://twitter.com/Ken_Rosenthal/status/1156369227533570048 The Answer Ahead I don’t know that the Twins will fill all of their current 40 man openings (presently at 37), but there’s zero doubt that a move has to be made. Romo was a nice start, but he seems to represent the floor and is only a single piece for a bullpen that needs to complete a full puzzle. Having been involved on virtually every name the market has flushed out, Falvey and Thad Levine are approaching decision making time. On Wednesday the Twins will need to figure out whether an arm like Edwin Diaz (reportedly an ask of Andrew Benintendi was suggested) or Kirby Yates is the move, or if they can survive with the likes of Daniel Hudson. I’m not sure that either of those avenues are the right answer, with the ideal path lying somewhere inbetween. What certainly can’t happen is that Minnesota whiffs and wastes the opportunity that lies in front of them. The reality is that this is a trade deadline of significant importance for the Minnesota Twins for the first time in nearly a decade. Although it’s understandable to still have a long term vision, nothing is guaranteed and opportunity currently lies in the immediate future. How this front office goes about the next handful of hours will shape 2019 and beyond, but it will also be a chapter in Twins history that we likely revisit often. How would you go about the next few hours? What are some hopes and expectations for the day? Where do you believe the intentions are for what lies ahead? More From Twins Daily Is Alex Kirilloff Expendable? Reviewing MLBTR’s Top 75 Trade Candidates What If The Twins Don't Go Big This Year? Deadline Rewind: A Progress Report on the Twins 2018 Trade Deadline Additions Twins Trade Deadline: Final Touches Twins Moving on From SP Trade Targets? What Sergio Romo Brings to the Twins Bullpen Could the Twins Afford to Take on Zack Greinke’s Contract? Trade Deadline Thread: The Rumor Mill is Working Overtime Trade Deadline Topics: Prospects, Scouting, Rumors Trade Deadline Thread: What To Do About the Rotation? The Gauntlet 1.2; A Complete Breakdown of the Top Relief Arms For Enlow and Other Minor Leaguers, “No One Is Safe” At Trade Deadline Jeremy's Deadline Series Let's Make A Deal, Part VI: GM For A Deadline Let's Make A Deal, Part V: Are We Getting Noah Syndergaard or Someone Else? Let's Make A Deal, Part IV: The Sellers Let's Make A Deal, Part III: The Ammunition Let's Make A Deal, Part II: Payroll Let's Make A Deal, Part I: 2020
  3. Derek Falvey did a tremendous job of acquiring some initial relief help in the form of Sergio Romo. He looked like a fit for this club over the winter and netting him along with another intriguing prospect for a guy who was subject to 40-man addition is quite the execution. If we can expect that strength of process in future deals, then this club should be in good shape. The front office has displayed plenty of evidence that they operate at a very high level, but it’d be a massive misstep not to see it in action at least one more time. LaVelle E. Neal has reported that the Twins were looking for impact starters if they were going to make a move there. Marcus Stroman was a name they were in on, but the Toronto Blue Jays never circled back before accepting a lackluster offer. Noah Syndergaard is another name Minnesota has targeted, but the Mets wanted catalyst Byron Buxton to headline the return. Now seemingly out on starting pitching, the attention turns back to where it’s been needed all along. Romo represents a solid addition that should take some pressure off Taylor Rogers, but the next arm in needs to be another tier up. Continuing to add talent that slots in at the height of the talent pool and raises the bottom rung is the way in which Minnesota should operate. Any acquisition can’t fall in line with dart throws like Matt Magill, Mike Morin, or Blake Parker. Entering the final stretch and needing significant contributions in the Postseason, these arms need to be heavily reliable from the get-go. It’s a pretty risky proposition to ever give up significant prospect capital for relief pitching. There are some very strong options that are under team control going forward however (Kirby Yates, Felipe Vasquez, Raisel Iglesias, Edwin Diaz, etc) and asking on those pieces first should be a must. Will Smith still represents an immediate band-aid and should require a muted return given the impending free agency. Despite what the Giants think they may be, getting them to sell that piece would certainly be a win for a true contender. Trusting in the blueprint and belief from this front office it’d be hard to question anyone they see an ability to squeeze more from. Wes Johnson has gotten quite a bit out of some unexpected places this season, but time and remaining schedule are both of the essence at this point. I think there’s real reason to believe an Archie Bradley or Mychal Givens could be high level additions that more is gained from both now and in the future. The area Minnesota can’t afford to settle is in the land of Daniel Hudson. Sure, he’s available and a piece, but that’s not the type of acquisition a team preaching opportunity should be agreeing to. After suggesting all offseason that they would go when the team was ready, Falvey will have a hard time selling a smoke and mirrors arm as the final piece of the puzzle. Peripherals matter and although Hudson, or someone like him, may have strong surface numbers a significant amount of impending regression should be cause for concern. I’d circle back once or twice on the man known as Thor and see if Brodie Van Wagenen has gotten back on his rocker yet. If that is out of the question or eating salary to take on Zack Greinke isn’t an option, then adding two more relief arms is how this should work out. Go get Will Smith if you don’t feel the top-tier controllable arms are worth the squeeze. Then add in another Sergio Romo type, or someone a bit more under the radar, and call it a day. Falvey has a team that’s very close, and next to nothing they can do is going to sacrifice 2020 and beyond. Failing to capitalize on this position while other contenders push their chips towards the middle could represent the setback everyone is trying to avoid. MORE FROM TWINS DAILY Could the Twins Afford to Take on Zack Greinke’s Contract? For Enlow and Other Minor Leaguers, “No One Is Safe” At Trade Deadline Is Alex Kirilloff Expendable? Let's Make A Deal, Part III: The Ammunition Trade Deadline Thread: How Far Would You Go to Add an Ace? What Sergio Romo Brings to the Twins Bullpen
  4. During the Twins game last night, multiple reporters had an interesting quote from Derek Falvey about the state of salary/payroll during this deadline. https://twitter.com/DerekWetmore/status/1154202862907510785?s=20 So the Twins would be willing to take on some money, you say? Well there is one particular reliever who came to mind for a lot of Twins fans including myself, and that is the Kansas City Royals reliever Ian Kennedy. The 34-year-old right-hander is under team control next season but he is owed roughly $16.5 million for that year. The Royals might still maintain some of the salary but the Twins would still be paying quite a bit. That shouldn’t be too big of a problem though, because Kennedy is actually a really good pitcher. He is in his first season as a relief pitcher after twelve up and down seasons as a starter. In 41 appearances this year, Kennedy owns a 3.48 ERA, 2.23 FIP(!), 10.89 K/9, and 2.18 BB/9. He is a solid right hander who will be able to share high leverage innings with Taylor Rogers and as a righty to pair with Rogers, the Twins could utilize their matchup approach to the bullpen even more. Of course if I’m calling, texting, facetiming or writing letters to Kansas City I am looking for a second player to pair with Kennedy, and that would be Lucas Duda. That is a joke, the real second piece the Twins should target is left handed reliever Jake Diekman. A lot of you will be turned off of him after I say this, but I would call him a left handed Trevor May. Diekman has a very good fastball reaching 96 mph that hitters are hitting just .185 against to go with an outstanding 13.28 K/9, but his BB/9 is a frustrating 5.09 so he will either strike you out or walk you. He is just a good pitcher you can put in for the sixth or seventh inning to safely get you to the big guns to finish the game. So what do you think? Would this package from the Royals be good enough to fix the Twins bullpen? Who are your favorite bullpen pieces expected to be available? Discuss that with me in the comments along with some of these other rumors in the deadline discussion. Deadline Discussion Fangraphs put out an article predicting what each team does at the deadline. They have Twins going to the Giants to acquire Madison Bumgarner and for the costly price of Brusdar Graterol and Trevor Larnach, the Twins #3 and #4 prospects respectively. While both are good pitchers, I don’t see the Twins dealing two of their best prospects for a rental starter and a reliever. What do you think? CBS Sports ranked the 50 best trade candidates for this upcoming deadline. The Twins are listed as fits for Austin Brice (#28), Tony Watson (#23), Sam Dyson (#22), Alex Colome (#21), Chris Martin (#20), Shawn Kelley (#19), Ken Giles (#15), Kirby Yates (#13), Trevor Bauer (#6), Mike Minor (#5) and Madison Bumgarner (#4). Who would you like to see from this list? Here at Twins Daily, Seth posted the first Trade Deadline Thread with some other interesting links from Ken Rosenthal among other posts. Also at Twins Daily, Matt and I gave our perfect trade deadline scenarios on our Leading Off Podcast, so just skip to the 46 minute mark for that. I guarantee there is no better place to find everything you need for the Twins and their upcoming trade deadline than right here at Twins Daily. Now come join me in the comments and let’s discuss the Royals package deal, the Mad Bum/Sam Dyson idea and the many other players linked to the Twins!
  5. *You're going to see a lot of speculation and analysis on potential bullpen additions at the site over the coming weeks. Cody led things off last night with a great overview of 10 potential trade targets. We'll continue to explore the reliever market by running profiles on specific pitchers each day. Kirby Yates, RHP, 32-years-old San Diego Padres (33-33, 4th in NL West) Under team control via arbitration through 2020 2019: 0.96 ERA, 0.86 WHIP, 15.4 K/9, 2.6 BB/9 in 28.0 IP 2018: 2.14 ERA, 0.92 WHIP, 12.9 K/9, 2.4 BB/9 in 63.0 IP What’s to Like? Well you gotta like the idea of a guy named Kirby joining the Twins, right? He’s also a frontrunner for fireman of the year right now. If you were looking to ride a hot hand, Yates is among the hottest you can find right now. Yates leads all relievers in saves (23), FanGraphs’ WAR (1.9) and WPA (2.59). Out of the 165 relievers with at least 20 innings, Yates is third in ERA (0.96), fourth in xFIP (1.95) and second in K-BB% (37.7). Opposing batters are hitting just .167/.245/.219 (.464 OPS) against him right now. Yates hasn’t given up a run in his last 10 appearances, yielding just two hits and one walk over that stretch. He hasn’t been taken deep in 2019 and has surrendered just five extra-base hits. Plugging in a set closer to the ninth inning would allow Rocco Baldelli to continue using Taylor Rogers in whatever other high-leverage situations he sees fit. Concerns Diversity is something to aim for in the bullpen, and Yates’ pitch mix is similar to a current Twins reliever. Yates’s specialty pitch is his splitter, same as Blake Parker, though Yates goes to that offering nearly twice as often as Parker does (42% vs. 21.8%). https://twitter.com/PitchingNinja/status/1126254140265566209 There’s also some concern that he may be a product of his pitching environment. Yates has posted a 161 ERA+ over 146 2/3 innings with the Padres. He was nowhere near that good with the Rays (73 ERA+ in 56 1/2 innings) or Yankees (83 ERA+ in 41 1/3 innings). What happens if you take him out of San Diego and put him back in the American League? He did develop that splitter while with the Padres, however, so maybe this is for real. The aging curve for relievers can be pretty brutal. Yates is 32 and it’s not like he’s a flame-thrower as it is. His four seamer, which he throws roughly 57% of the time, sits 93 mph. See Also 10 Relievers Minnesota Could Target
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