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  1. For a few glorious weeks, it appeared the Twins had struck gold with Martin Perez, an under-the-radar free agent signing that initially seemed to validate the front office's questionable rotation gamble. Then, it all fell apart. Newly signed right-hander Homer Bailey is a similar specimen in many ways. Can he sustain as a success story for Minnesota?The Perez experiment is considered a failure in the eyes of many fans, but I'm not sure that's entirely fair. I was as skeptical as anyone of the value-driven acquisition at first, until I got down to spring training and saw the lefty with my own
  2. The Perez experiment is considered a failure in the eyes of many fans, but I'm not sure that's entirely fair. I was as skeptical as anyone of the value-driven acquisition at first, until I got down to spring training and saw the lefty with my own two eyes. All the talk about a mid-90s fastball and newly weaponized cutter... it was legit. He looked fantastic. That carried over into the regular season. Through his first handful of turns in the rotation, Perez looked almost unhittable. The fastball/cutter combo was playing exactly to plan, and it appeared Minnesota's front office had unearthed
  3. NELSON CRUZ 2020 OPTION ACTIVATED This barely qualifies as news. Activating the ultra-reasonable $12 million club option on Cruz was a total no-brainer, and the club's intention had already been announced via media reports. Nevertheless, it's now official: Boomstick is back. https://twitter.com/Twins/status/1191478991129055234 MARTIN PEREZ 2020 OPTION DECLINED Around the middle of May, the decision to activate Perez's team option in 2020 looked about as obvious Cruz's does now. Through his first eight starts he put up a 2.17 ERA, pairing a standout cutter with eye-catching fastball vel
  4. The Minnesota Twins' offseason officially kicked off on Monday, with the club announcing several significant roster moves. Nelson Cruz will be back, Martin Perez will not (at least not on the same contract), and Jake Odorizzi faces a tough decision. Meanwhile, another key instructor was extracted by another (dreaded) team, and a pair of former top pitching prospects exited the organization. Read on for more detail on each of these developments as the Hot Stove begins to spark.NELSON CRUZ 2020 OPTION ACTIVATED This barely qualifies as news. Activating the ultra-reasonable $12 million club
  5. Jake Odorizzi has been one of the Twins best starting pitchers this season, and will definitely have a huge role in these upcoming playoffs. Rocco Baldelli has said he has a rotation basically set, but is not releasing it yet so I took a look at when Jake should be pitching to maximize his potential for success. Here is the good and the bad for him pitching game one, two, or three.Game One The good: Jake Odorizzi has simply been the Twins best starting pitcher since the beginning of August. If you want the hot hand going in to pitch game one without considering other statistics like his stat
  6. Game One The good: Jake Odorizzi has simply been the Twins best starting pitcher since the beginning of August. If you want the hot hand going in to pitch game one without considering other statistics like his stats in New York, then Jake is probably your guy. Here is each starter since August. Jake Odorizzi (50.1 IP) 3.04 ERA 2.16 FIP 4.06 K/BB Jose Berrios (58.2 IP) 5.83 ERA 4.44 FIP 2.95 K/BB Randy Dobnak (19.1 IP) 1.86 ERA 2.80 FIP 3.20 K/BB Martin Perez (54.1 IP) 6.63 ERA 5.61 FIP 1.81 K/BB Odorizzi has also accumulated 2.1 WAR since the start of August and that is good for sixth in
  7. Box Score Perez: 5.2 IP, 3 H, 3 ER, 3 BB, 5 K, 62% strikes (63 of 102 pitches) Bullpen: 2.2 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 6 BB, 2 K Home Runs: Cron (25), Cave (8), Castro (13) Multi-Hit Games: Cave (2-for-4) Bottom 3 WPA: Brusdar Graterol (-.358), Lewis Thorpe (-.340), Jonathan Schoop (-.117) Ehire Adrianza (manager) knows how to make a home run lineup. Rookie manager Ehire Adrianza put together the final lineup of the regular season and they got off to a hot start. The game started with the Twins trailing New York by one in the home run race, but the Twins had something to say about that. The first
  8. The final game of the regular season came right down to the end, but unfortunately the Royals won it by a score of 5-4 on a walk off sacrifice fly. After 162 regular season games, the Twins finished with a 101-61 record and an AL Central title. Oh by the way, THE HOME RUN RECORD BELONGS TO THE TWINS. The Yankees hit one, but the Twins hit three and now the all time record belongs to the team in Minnesota.Box Score Perez: 5.2 IP, 3 H, 3 ER, 3 BB, 5 K, 62% strikes (63 of 102 pitches) Bullpen: 2.2 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 6 BB, 2 K Home Runs: Cron (25), Cave (8), Castro (13) Multi-Hit Games: Cave (2-for-
  9. Box Score Perez: 2.1 IP, 8 H, 5 ER, 0 BB, 1 K, 73% strikes (38 of 52 pitches) Bullpen: 6.2 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 6 BB, 14 K Home Runs: Cruz (40), Sano (33, 34) Multi-Hit Games: Polanco (2-for-4), Cruz (2-for-3), Rosario (3-for-4), Gonzalez (2-for-4), Sano (2-for-4) Top 3 WPA: Miguel Sano (0.25), Eddie Rosario (0.24), Nelson Cruz (0.14) Bottom 3 WPA: Martin Perez (-0.26), Mitch Garver (-0.09), Jason Castro (-0.03) Both starting pitchers have abysmal starts. Martin Perez vs Jorge Lopez was never advertised as a pitching duel and somehow it was still about as disappointing as it could have possib
  10. The magic number is three! In a game where more questions about the strating pitching were surfaced rather than answered, the Twins were still able to pull out the win to go along with a series win. The bullpen was excellent once again despite having to go nearly seven innings, Miguel Sano hit two bombs, and Nelson Cruz joined an exclusive home run club.Box Score Perez: 2.1 IP, 8 H, 5 ER, 0 BB, 1 K, 73% strikes (38 of 52 pitches) Bullpen: 6.2 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 6 BB, 14 K Home Runs: Cruz (40), Sano (33, 34) Multi-Hit Games: Polanco (2-for-4), Cruz (2-for-3), Rosario (3-for-4), Gonzalez (2-for-4),
  11. Kyle Gibson W-L 13-7, 4.76 ERA, 1.40 WHIP, 151 K, 50 BB, 155.0 IP Minnesota used Kyle Gibson as a reliever on Sunday and things didn’t go exactly to plan. He entered the game after Fernando Romero had already put multiple runners on base and then Gibson surrendered a three-run home run. Only one of the earned runs was charged to Gibson, but the big hit came when he was pitching. One of the bigger issues for Gibson are the health issues he has been battling for most of the season. In spring training, he was also diagnosed with E. coli that he contracted while doing mission work during the off
  12. On a night when the offense couldn’t catch a break the Twins were, somewhat surprisingly, carried by Martin Perez and the Polanco-less defense. Perez outshines Eovaldi, the defense saves the day, and the Twins win the rubber match 2-1 over the Red Sox.Box Score Perez: 6.0 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 1 K, 70.0% strikes (49 of 70 pitches) Bullpen: 3.0 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 3 K Home Runs: None Multi-Hit Games: None Top 3 WPA: Perez (.242), Rogers (.226), Duffey (.151) Bottom 3 WPA: Cruz (-.172), Cron (-.161), Kepler (-.152) Martin Perez starts strong in September, Bullpen holds the lead Hopefully ton
  13. Box Score Perez: 6.0 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 1 K, 70.0% strikes (49 of 70 pitches) Bullpen: 3.0 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 3 K Home Runs: None Multi-Hit Games: None Top 3 WPA: Perez (.242), Rogers (.226), Duffey (.151) Bottom 3 WPA: Cruz (-.172), Cron (-.161), Kepler (-.152) Martin Perez starts strong in September, Bullpen holds the lead Hopefully tonight was a sign of things to come for Perez. Through four innings Perez had a strike percentage of 82 percent and had induced just three hard hits as defined by Baseball Savant. If it wasn’t for a fluke home run by Mookie Betts, which had an xBA of .25
  14. What was that? The Detroit Tigers have averaged an MLB-low 3.59 runs per game. They scored a total of three runs in their most recent series against Cleveland. A lineup that had zero hitters carrying an OPS above league average managed to beat the Twins, the greatest home run hitting team of all time, 10-7 Saturday.Box Score Perez: 2.2 IP, 9 H, 8 R, 7 ER, 2 BB, 4 K, 67.1% strikes (55 of 82 pitches) Bullpen: 5.1 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 7 K Home Runs: Garver 2 (26), Kepler (36), Polanco (20), Cron (24), Cruz (34) Multi-Hit Games: Garver (2-for-3, 2 HR, 2 BB), Polanco (2-for-4, HR, BB), Cruz (2-fo
  15. Box Score Perez: 2.2 IP, 9 H, 8 R, 7 ER, 2 BB, 4 K, 67.1% strikes (55 of 82 pitches) Bullpen: 5.1 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 7 K Home Runs: Garver 2 (26), Kepler (36), Polanco (20), Cron (24), Cruz (34) Multi-Hit Games: Garver (2-for-3, 2 HR, 2 BB), Polanco (2-for-4, HR, BB), Cruz (2-for-5, HR), Kepler (2-for-3, HR, BB) Bottom 3 WPA: Perez -.519, Sano -.079, Rosario -.056 Martin Perez came into this start with some positive momentum. He’d pitched to a 2.12 ERA in his previous three outings, though he had also walked nine batters in 17 innings. Still, a matchup against Detroit seemed to be the
  16. Podcast: https://open.spotify.com/episode/3SdwRv9Gy1NmD60122nGAP?context=spotify%3Ashow%3A6i0VQTvQS0kuDFRW5rjWRH&si=NX49etnRSruflqFUmNCIfw Time stamps: 1:40 Reviewing this successful week 9:20 Discussing the division lead 23:00 Rotation struggling 29:30 Wait...the bullpen is good? 34:45 injury news (Gibson/Buxton) 37:20 Fan questions! Which Sept call ups make postseason? How does your playoff rotation look? Predict the 2020 rotation Which Twins player would you spend a day at the fair with? 58:50 Did Martin Perez do his job? 69:00 Minor League awards but Matt gets mad at m
  17. Matt and Cooper discuss how the playoff race is shaping up for the Twins, the impact of the recent September call-ups, and answer fan questions while still remaining the most sarcastic duo known to man.Podcast: https://open.spotify...RSruflqFUmNCIfw Time stamps: 1:40 Reviewing this successful week 9:20 Discussing the division lead 23:00 Rotation struggling 29:30 Wait...the bullpen is good? 34:45 injury news (Gibson/Buxton) 37:20 Fan questions! Which Sept call ups make postseason?How does your playoff rotation look?Predict the 2020 rotationWhich Twins player would you spend a day
  18. Box Score Pérez: 6 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 68% strikes (68 of 100 pitches) Bullpen: 3 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 2 K Home Runs: C.J. Cron (21), J.Schoop (18) Multi-Hit Games: None Top 3 WPA: Pérez .214, Garver .154, Schoop .101 Martín Pérez returned to Target Field after a very successful road trip in which he allowed just two runs in 11 innings. The bullpen and bats restricted Pérez to no decisions in both starts. The Twins allowed 8-of-9 leadoff batters to reach base in last night’s victory. On Sunday, Pérez surrendered just one. C.J. Cron assisted Pérez to his first win since before the
  19. The Twins recovered after a poor performance on Friday to take the series from Detroit and finish the homestand with a 3-3 record. The 7-4 win increases their lead in the AL Central to 3 1/2 games, as Cleveland fell to Kansas City 9-8.Box Score Pérez: 6 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 68% strikes (68 of 100 pitches) Bullpen: 3 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 2 K Home Runs: C.J. Cron (21), J.Schoop (18) Multi-Hit Games: None Top 3 WPA: Pérez .214, Garver .154, Schoop .101 Martín Pérez returned to Target Field after a very successful road trip in which he allowed just two runs in 11 innings. The bullpen an
  20. Box Score Perez: 5.0 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 4 BB, 2 K, 65% strikes (65 of 100 pitches) Bullpen: 4 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 4 K Home Runs: None Multi-Hit Games: Polanco (2-for-4), Adrianza (2-for-5) Top 3 WPA: Polanco .426, Castro .162, Gonzalez .130 Bottom 3 WPA: Cron -172, Rosario -.134, Cave -.131 Lance Lynn does Lance Lynn things as Twins take early lead This game started with the narrative of Lance Lynn pitching against the Twins and Twins fans everywhere wanted to score 30 runs on this guy but he just reminded us of his tenure in Minnesota. The first two innings took him fifty seven pitches t
  21. The Twins stayed as hot as the scorching weather today as they completed the sweep over the Texas Rangers. Martin Perez made his second straight good start and a huge triple from Jorge Polanco led the Twins to the 6-3 win. The division lead remains at 2.5 games and the Twins will host Chicago next.Box Score Perez: 5.0 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 4 BB, 2 K, 65% strikes (65 of 100 pitches) Bullpen: 4 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 4 K Home Runs: None Multi-Hit Games: Polanco (2-for-4), Adrianza (2-for-5) Top 3 WPA: Polanco .426, Castro .162, Gonzalez .130 Bottom 3 WPA: Cron -172, Rosario -.134, Cave -.131 Lance
  22. In case you haven’t noticed, the Twins starting rotation has been a huge area of concern since August began. Jose Berrios has dropped off a bit, Jake Odorizzi and Kyle Gibson struggle with consistency and then the number five spot is a fight between Martin Perez and Devin Smeltzer with neither of them doing enough to secure a job. The most consistent and reliable starter recently is Michael Pineda, but he hit the IL as August began and since then the Twins rotation holds a 5.55 ERA, 5.16 FIP, 1.61 HR/9, and 3.94 BB/9. Ironically, the Twins lost a key starting pitcher just a couple days after
  23. Earlier this month, the Twins had a few key players land on the IL, the most notable being Byron Buxton. Losing him definitely hurts more than anyone else on the team. But a key member of the rotation also went down around the same time but has since returned. How good has that pitcher been recently? Do the Twins have the depth to take the blow of him going down? How much can he do to help win the division? Keep reading to find out.In case you haven’t noticed, the Twins starting rotation has been a huge area of concern since August began. Jose Berrios has dropped off a bit, Jake Odorizzi and K
  24. To say it has been a rough go lately for Martin Perez would be putting it lightly. After posting a 2.95 ERA in 58 innings through May 23rd, the wheels have completely fallen off the wagon. In 12 starts since then, Perez has a 6.47 ERA in 64 innings pitched. Remarkably, the Twins are still 5-7 in those games, but if it weren’t for their great offense, things would be much worse for Perez and the Twins. That is why I fear that leaving Perez in the starting rotation is only tempting fate, and it might be a good time for the Twins to find a different role for him.When the Twins first signed Martin
  25. When the Twins first signed Martin Perez, I was one of the people that was on board with this being a good signing, and during the first two months of his Twins tenure, he looked like an excellent addition to the starting rotation. However, in light of how Perez has pitched over the past two months, and given the sense of urgency the Twins are suddenly under, it might be best for them to find a new role for Perez, outside of the starting rotation. This could be a hard move for the Twins front office to make, as it would removing the one addition they made to the starting rotation this past win
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