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  1. Baseball isn't coming back if we don't do something about it. I don't follow other sports, but I learned that the NBA and MLS are restarting in Florida, and the NHL is doing... something, I don't really know what. Their boards and committees have all approved of plans, but MLB has not. Here's the thing: People NEED baseball. They need to have that thing that distracts them from regular life. They need a sport that's totally organized and set up right. I understand that we have a major global pandemic right now. But if other professional sports are figuring out how to restart, than we need to as well. We need to figure things out so we can have a season. And right now, it's all about money. They aren't thinking about what players want, or what fans want. It's all about money. I personally really liked the MLBPA's proposal for a 114-game season. As a fan, I want to get in as many games as possible. Now they're saying that they only want to play for 40-50 games. Just so they can pay the players as little as possible! A baseball player's job is hard. They have to play 162 games in a season, and they risk injury doing all this. It's physically demanding and difficult. That's why I believe that players should get payed as much as possible. I need baseball. Replay games lack the magic of a regular game. We need that unpredictability, one where we can't look up the final score. Baseball is my favorite sport. Even if we don't play in 2020, that won't change. Here's the thing though: It will change for some people. If baseball is the ONLY sport that doesn't come back in 2020, baseball will face serious declines in fans. This post was sort of just my ideas. I wrote whatever came into my head and I'm aware that I kept circling back to things. But, if you liked this and want to know more of my ideas, you can look for part 2 on Monday. Comment why you think baseball should or should not come back in 2020. I may use some of your ideas in my next post.
  2. Welcome to the final day of the All-Star break! The Home Run Derby has concluded (shout out to Pete Alonso for Justin Morneau-ing the hell out of Vladdy Jr.) and the All-Star Game came and went. Now we find ourselves smack dab in the middle of my favorite time of the season: trade season. After the All-Star game, every beat writer in America with any sort of following dusted off their phones, confirmed their “sources” and now keep Twitter even closer than before in the hopes that they might be the first to drop some juicy news regarding the potential interest of a team in another team’s player.For the Twins, they find themselves solidly on the other side of the table this year as they will not be looking to shed veterans for prospects but instead they will be adding veterans in exchange for their much-coveted prospects. Essentially, this will be the first deadline under the new front office headed by Derek Falvey and Thad Levine where their play is obvious and on the spectrum that involves making a World Series contender instead of aiding another team in their efforts to win the title. I phrase it that way with the odd 2017 deadline in mind where Jaime García was acquired just to be shipped off to the Yankees a week later and Brandon Kintzler was sent to the Nationals. But that was hardly a team looking to become true World Series contenders and the fact that they made the playoffs that year at all was a minor miracle. This year is different, the fruits of Falvey and Levine’s efforts (along the many coaches and players) have blossomed and the Twins sit at the top of the AL Central with a 5.5 game lead. Since the introduction of the new front office, basically everything that was ever synonymous with Twins’ baseball has been stomped on and thrown out the window. Long gone are the days of small ball and pitching to contact and in are the days of slugging and striking out other batters. The results have been pretty decent if you ask me as Stage 1 of the plan has been a success but Stage 2 emerges and the question now is; how will the Twins attack the trade deadline? We all have our own personal beliefs for whom the Twins should acquire (I say a top-tier starter, a top-tier reliever, and a mid-tier reliever for depth but that’s a different topic), but as I mentioned before, we are heading into uncharted territory as the Twins go into the deadline as kings with a vast bounty in front of them to choose from, something that has not happened under this front office. Shoot, the last time you could really even say they were in a similar place was 2010 when they last took the division, but even that team was only at 58 wins at the deadline (the current Twins are already at 56) and the only big move at the deadline then was the addition of Matt Capps which was… Yeah let’s just leave that topic alone. Without any recent Twins history of deadline moves as World Series favorites, I looked to the history of Derek Falvey during his tenure with the Indians and Thad Levine when he was with the Rangers in order to get a good feel for how those teams acted when they were in a similar spot as the Twins are now and then use that information to predict what they will do in the coming weeks. Derek Falvey Falvey first joined the Indians in 2007 but was promoted to co-director of baseball operations after the 2011 season so that is where I will start my investigation. In the season immediately following his promotion, the Indians won just 68 games as they continued to wander aimlessly through the baseball landscape like the Israelities when they left Egypt but with fewer curses, or maybe more actually ... anyway, they were bad for a while. It was a different story in 2013 for the Indians, as they won 92 games and made it to the Wild Card game. They would eventually lose that game but they finally reversed course toward a successful future and the groundwork was set. At the deadline the Indians were at 59 wins and their lone move was acquiring reliever Mark Rzepczynski who definitely made me check my spelling no less than four times when typing his name. The Indians were really boring for the next two years so let’s skip those. The 2016 Indians is where stuff gets really fun. That team won 94 games and not only won the division but made it to Game 7 of the World Series where they lost in heartbreaking fashion, a shame. That Cleveland team had 60 wins at the deadline and shocked the baseball world by acquiring a little known reliever named Andrew Miller at the deadline. They also were on the verge of acquiring catcher Jonathan Lucroy but he exercised his no-trade clause and the trade died. What can be learned from this? Well, unfortunately there was only one year where the Indians were in a position much like the 2019 Twins. But what is really interesting is the addition of Andrew Miller as he proved to be a key cog in their bullpen and was an instance where the Indians bought high on a controllable reliever who would help the team that year and a few years down the road. What possibly is frightening is that the one weakness of that Indians squad was their bench depth that was half-heartedly addressed by adding Brandon Guyer and journeyman Michael Martinez who of course happened to be the final out of that World Series. The 2019 Twins currently hold a better bench than the 2016 Indians, but it will be pushed to the limit in every capacity during the playoffs and Derek Falvey would be wise to remember what happened in 2016. Thad Levine Thad Levine was brought on as an assistant to the general manager for the Rangers following the 2005 season. Since he was there was that many years ago, I’ll cut out some seasons that amounted to nothing, you’re very welcome. For the first few years, the Rangers really didn’t do much winning but in 2010 they won 90 games and made it all the way to the World Series. With 61 wins heading into the trade deadline, the Rangers were big buyers, as they traded for starter Cliff Lee and reliever Mark Lowe along with some depth pieces like Bengie Molina, Jeff Francoeur, Jorge Cantu, and Christian Guzmán during July and August. Cliff Lee was a hired gun as his contract was up after the year, Mark Lowe was a controllable reliever who stuck around for two years following the 2010 season and the other players mostly didn’t stick around long. What I find very interesting is that the Rangers in 2010 had no previous history of success leading into the season but saw what unfolded in front of them and were very aggressive in acquiring the pieces necessary to make a run not just that year but for years in the future. They covered all their bases (pun most certainly intended) and just happened to run into the buzzsaw that was the Giants that year in the World Series. Speaking of the future, though … The 2011 Rangers didn’t like losing the World Series in 2010 so they went and made it again! This year they won 96 games and had another aggressive trade deadline by acquiring relievers Mike Adams, Koji Uehara, and Mike Gonzalez in order to boost a bullpen that was the third worst in baseball by fWAR before the deadline (it was then the sixth best bullpen by fWAR in baseball after the deadline). The Rangers after the deadline were again a very well-rounded squad but just couldn’t seal the deal against a scrappy Cardinals club and they again lost the World Series. What I really like is that the Rangers again showed that they were willing to aggressively attack what they saw as the biggest weakness on the team in order to put themselves in the best place possible to win a championship. The next two years, the Rangers still fielded good teams but not quite good enough to make more deep playoff runs and they made a number of trades for veterans in which they gave up prospects who eventually would become quality players in a desperate attempt to continue their run (guys like Kyle Hendricks, Carl Edwards Jr., and Leury Garcia). Their contention window with that core was over after 2013. Now knowing how each team conducted their deadline when in a position to succeed, I am even more looking forward to the deadline as it could be a combination of the Indians' pragmatism in 2016 for quality players who would stick around for more than just that season (Andrew Miller and almost Jonathan Lucroy), and the Rangers' aggressiveness in 2010 and 2011 where positions of need were identified and addressed and depth was made a priority in order for their squad to best make their playoff run. I can’t know for certain what the plan is, but I am damn excited to see it unfold. 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  3. For the Twins, they find themselves solidly on the other side of the table this year as they will not be looking to shed veterans for prospects but instead they will be adding veterans in exchange for their much-coveted prospects. Essentially, this will be the first deadline under the new front office headed by Derek Falvey and Thad Levine where their play is obvious and on the spectrum that involves making a World Series contender instead of aiding another team in their efforts to win the title. I phrase it that way with the odd 2017 deadline in mind where Jaime García was acquired just to be shipped off to the Yankees a week later and Brandon Kintzler was sent to the Nationals. But that was hardly a team looking to become true World Series contenders and the fact that they made the playoffs that year at all was a minor miracle. This year is different, the fruits of Falvey and Levine’s efforts (along the many coaches and players) have blossomed and the Twins sit at the top of the AL Central with a 5.5 game lead. Since the introduction of the new front office, basically everything that was ever synonymous with Twins’ baseball has been stomped on and thrown out the window. Long gone are the days of small ball and pitching to contact and in are the days of slugging and striking out other batters. The results have been pretty decent if you ask me as Stage 1 of the plan has been a success but Stage 2 emerges and the question now is; how will the Twins attack the trade deadline? We all have our own personal beliefs for whom the Twins should acquire (I say a top-tier starter, a top-tier reliever, and a mid-tier reliever for depth but that’s a different topic), but as I mentioned before, we are heading into uncharted territory as the Twins go into the deadline as kings with a vast bounty in front of them to choose from, something that has not happened under this front office. Shoot, the last time you could really even say they were in a similar place was 2010 when they last took the division, but even that team was only at 58 wins at the deadline (the current Twins are already at 56) and the only big move at the deadline then was the addition of Matt Capps which was… Yeah let’s just leave that topic alone. Without any recent Twins history of deadline moves as World Series favorites, I looked to the history of Derek Falvey during his tenure with the Indians and Thad Levine when he was with the Rangers in order to get a good feel for how those teams acted when they were in a similar spot as the Twins are now and then use that information to predict what they will do in the coming weeks. Derek Falvey Falvey first joined the Indians in 2007 but was promoted to co-director of baseball operations after the 2011 season so that is where I will start my investigation. In the season immediately following his promotion, the Indians won just 68 games as they continued to wander aimlessly through the baseball landscape like the Israelities when they left Egypt but with fewer curses, or maybe more actually ... anyway, they were bad for a while. It was a different story in 2013 for the Indians, as they won 92 games and made it to the Wild Card game. They would eventually lose that game but they finally reversed course toward a successful future and the groundwork was set. At the deadline the Indians were at 59 wins and their lone move was acquiring reliever Mark Rzepczynski who definitely made me check my spelling no less than four times when typing his name. The Indians were really boring for the next two years so let’s skip those. The 2016 Indians is where stuff gets really fun. That team won 94 games and not only won the division but made it to Game 7 of the World Series where they lost in heartbreaking fashion, a shame. That Cleveland team had 60 wins at the deadline and shocked the baseball world by acquiring a little known reliever named Andrew Miller at the deadline. They also were on the verge of acquiring catcher Jonathan Lucroy but he exercised his no-trade clause and the trade died. What can be learned from this? Well, unfortunately there was only one year where the Indians were in a position much like the 2019 Twins. But what is really interesting is the addition of Andrew Miller as he proved to be a key cog in their bullpen and was an instance where the Indians bought high on a controllable reliever who would help the team that year and a few years down the road. What possibly is frightening is that the one weakness of that Indians squad was their bench depth that was half-heartedly addressed by adding Brandon Guyer and journeyman Michael Martinez who of course happened to be the final out of that World Series. The 2019 Twins currently hold a better bench than the 2016 Indians, but it will be pushed to the limit in every capacity during the playoffs and Derek Falvey would be wise to remember what happened in 2016. Thad Levine Thad Levine was brought on as an assistant to the general manager for the Rangers following the 2005 season. Since he was there was that many years ago, I’ll cut out some seasons that amounted to nothing, you’re very welcome. For the first few years, the Rangers really didn’t do much winning but in 2010 they won 90 games and made it all the way to the World Series. With 61 wins heading into the trade deadline, the Rangers were big buyers, as they traded for starter Cliff Lee and reliever Mark Lowe along with some depth pieces like Bengie Molina, Jeff Francoeur, Jorge Cantu, and Christian Guzmán during July and August. Cliff Lee was a hired gun as his contract was up after the year, Mark Lowe was a controllable reliever who stuck around for two years following the 2010 season and the other players mostly didn’t stick around long. What I find very interesting is that the Rangers in 2010 had no previous history of success leading into the season but saw what unfolded in front of them and were very aggressive in acquiring the pieces necessary to make a run not just that year but for years in the future. They covered all their bases (pun most certainly intended) and just happened to run into the buzzsaw that was the Giants that year in the World Series. Speaking of the future, though … The 2011 Rangers didn’t like losing the World Series in 2010 so they went and made it again! This year they won 96 games and had another aggressive trade deadline by acquiring relievers Mike Adams, Koji Uehara, and Mike Gonzalez in order to boost a bullpen that was the third worst in baseball by fWAR before the deadline (it was then the sixth best bullpen by fWAR in baseball after the deadline). The Rangers after the deadline were again a very well-rounded squad but just couldn’t seal the deal against a scrappy Cardinals club and they again lost the World Series. What I really like is that the Rangers again showed that they were willing to aggressively attack what they saw as the biggest weakness on the team in order to put themselves in the best place possible to win a championship. The next two years, the Rangers still fielded good teams but not quite good enough to make more deep playoff runs and they made a number of trades for veterans in which they gave up prospects who eventually would become quality players in a desperate attempt to continue their run (guys like Kyle Hendricks, Carl Edwards Jr., and Leury Garcia). Their contention window with that core was over after 2013. Now knowing how each team conducted their deadline when in a position to succeed, I am even more looking forward to the deadline as it could be a combination of the Indians' pragmatism in 2016 for quality players who would stick around for more than just that season (Andrew Miller and almost Jonathan Lucroy), and the Rangers' aggressiveness in 2010 and 2011 where positions of need were identified and addressed and depth was made a priority in order for their squad to best make their playoff run. I can’t know for certain what the plan is, but I am damn excited to see it unfold.
  4. Dan and Panda cover what's been happening in the world of baseball since Boston won the World Series. They finally wish Joe Mauer farewell, break down the end of the year award winners, some of the bigger free agent news (CIN spending, Thor to SD, Machado's antics in NY), and assemble their all-time favorite Twins team! https://www.spreaker.com/user/the4dpodcastnetwork/twins-and-losses-supershow-episode-71-no
  5. Oh you didn't know? Your ass better call somebody! Dan and Panda are back, talking about Ervin Santana's finger surgery, what the starting rotation might look like now that Yu Darvish has signed, why we might be without baseball in 2020, and that the Twins should sign a healthy Tim Lincecum. Check out the newest episode on Spreaker, iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, and Pocket Casts; search "Twins And Losses." https://www.spreaker.com/show/twins-and-losses-supershow
  6. We're back! Episode 53 is available for you to ingest right now! This week Dan and Panda cover all of the recent MLB free agency moves, along with what the Twins have been up to. Then they take a trip to the local retirement home and break out #OldFriend Barry Campbell to talk about the Minnesota Wild, and answer a thousand fan questions that you sent in! Check out this week's episode using the links below - https://www.spreaker.com/show/twins-and-losses-supershow https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/twins-and-losses-supershow/id1072119485?mt=2 https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/the-4d-podcast-network/twins-and-losses-supershow
  7. Happy New Year! We're back with a brand new episode to ring in the new year. This week Dan and Panda talk about TV shows, Dan's complaints with Star Wars fans, and the terrible news regarding Miguel Sano. https://www.spreaker.com/show/twins-and-losses-supershow
  8. Dan and Panda are back with a bunch of baseball talk. Pretty sweet for December, yeah? We talk about the vacant managerial position at AAA, the Twins' hiring of Masa Abe, whether the Twins have a shot at Darvish or Ohtani (we know the answer to one at least), why some Twins fans suck, and whether or not we should let steroid users into the Hall of Fame. Check out this episode and all previous episodes on Spreaker, iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, and Pocket Casts! Don't forget to like share, and leave a comment! https://www.spreaker.com/show/twins-and-losses-supershow
  9. Dan and Panda recorded a bonus Supershow after the Twins clinched their post-season berth! Check out their thoughts on the Twins and their potential competition on the long and winding road to another World Series title! http://www.spreaker.com/user/the4dpodcastnetwork/twins-and-losses-supershow-bonus-edition
  10. Jim Wiesner loved the game. And the game love him back. http://www.startribune.com/longtime-twins-clubhouse-attendant-jim-wiesner-dies/425188143/
  11. A very interesting article on USAToday by Bob Nightingale: Too soon? MLB GMs salivating over potential 2018 free agents Why are the White Sox having a fire sale? (Get it? They traded Chris Sale!) And why are the Dodgers in a bad spot? How the heck did Bryce Harper turn down a $400 M contract? Read below! http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/mlb/columnist/bob-nightengale/2016/12/07/teams-prepare-free-agency-class-of-2018-bryce-harper-manny-machado/95124202/ ...and the list: http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2016/12/2018-19-mlb-free-agents.html So, maybe the Twins are quite this year and planning for 2018? Hey, a feller can dream, right?
  12. Another sad turn of events for Trevor May. From the Strib: Trevor May shut down for remainder of the season with more back problems http://www.startribune.com/trevor-may-shut-down-for-remainder-of-the-season-with-more-back-problems/393321441/ In the Game article: http://www.startribune.com/kyle-gibson-cruises-as-twins-pound-detroit/393343761/ Molitor is quoted as saying: "“In a matter of a couple pitches, the symptoms returned,’’ Molitor said. “He finished it out the best he could. He told us when he came off that we were back to Square 1.’’ A note from Rob Anthony: Acting general manager Rob Antony said he would like May, once he gets over his back issues, to return to starting next season.
  13. THE MINNESOTA TWINS VIDEO MESSAGE TO SEASON TICKET HOLDERS http://www.twincities.com/2016/09/13/minnesota-twins-video-plea-season-ticket-holders-stay-with-us/ The Pioneer Press got is directly from the Twins. ENJOY
  14. Ricky Nolasco hasn’t made many friends in Twins Territory over the past few seasons. Have you forgotten some of the reasons why? Well for starters; this, and lets not forget this gem to start to season. Not to mention Ricky has been underwhelming during his run with the Twins. The Twins knew what they were getting when they signed Nolasco: an average pitcher with strikeout potential. Over the first two seasons of his four-year deal with Minnesota, Nolasco has pitched 196 1/3 innings. That would be his fifth highest career total for IP, unfortunately it happened over two seasons, instead of one. Ricky’s ERA and WHIP have ballooned since he left MIA and LAD too. His ERA since joining the Twins is 0.84 and 2.21 higher than his career average in 2014, and 2015 respectively. His WHIP has jumped up .193 and .391 over the last two seasons. That’s generally not a good sign for a pitcher coming up on their mid-30’s, who still has a year after this remaining on his contract. The good (bad) news (depending on which side of the fence you fall) is that Ricky’s spring training starts looked good. While Tyler Duffey was anointed the fifth starter coming into spring, Ricky Nolasco pitched better, against the same kind of competition. At the time Duffey was cut from spring training, Ricky’s ERA was 2 points lower, and his strikeouts were significantly higher (I believe Ricky was down to a 4.05, with 18 SOs, vs. Duffeys 6.71 ERA and 4SOs to 3BBs). Unfortunately Nolasco’s stats ballooned in his last few outings, and his ERA was north of 5.00, fully understanding that spring training isn’t always the best barometer of whom to bring back to the Twin Cities. If healthy, and in the mindset that he can help the team (or himself through a trade), Nolasco won’t hurt this team. While many fans will be hoping for another injury (we want May/Duffey/Berrios, dammit!), my hope is that Nolasco pitches so well, a potential playoff team will take him off our hands at the trade deadline. Another interesting idea would be flipping Duffey to the bullpen, and May to the starting rotation should this occur, or in the future. May has enough pitches to start, while Duffey could use his time in the bullpen to develop another pitch or two. That’s an article for another time though. The money doesn’t matter nearly as much as the roster spot. The Twins have some great pitching options waiting in the Wings (see what I did there?) who may not have much more to prove. The signings of Phil Hughes, Ervin Santana, and Nolasco have put some of those players on the back burner. We’ve seen the contracts being demanded by pitchers these days, so the lengths and costs were going to rise. This could be a good thing if Terry Ryan and the front office aren’t sold on Berrios, Meyer, May, and many others not being ready for primetime just yet. Having some proven starters to wait out the development of the younger arms isn’t a bad plan, you just hope you aren’t wasting precious time with the rookies. I’m not sold on the Twins making a strong post-season run quite yet. I think 2017 is a more realistic season for the Twins to start making waves again. This year will be one laden with hope. Hope that Miguel Sano continues to mash taters. Hope that Byron Buxton gets his bat going in the majors. Hope that Byung-ho Park isn’t lost in translation. Hope that Joe Mauer can return to a semblance his former self. And hope that Carlos Nolasco is more of a Ricky, than a Richard. Follow Twins And Losses: Twitter: @TwinsAndLosses Facebook: Twins And Losses Website: twinsandlosses.com
  15. Here is a link: http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2015/05/right-hander-norge-ruiz-leaves-cuba-will-seek-deal-with-mlb-club.html From what I have heard it sounds like he has really good potential.
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