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  1. Dissension on Spending?

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ID:	5677Earlier this month, while calling his team's play "embarrassing" (this was before the pitching staff coughed up 39 runs in a four-game sweep at Oakland over the weekend), owner Jim Pohlad expressed his dedication to turning things around, suggesting that he was ready to make a significant financial commitment toward that end.

    "We made a couple trades last year; I'm not sure that we can rely on that this year," Pohlad told Charley Walters of the Pioneer Press. ...
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  2. Liam Hendriks Has Run Out of Chances

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ID:	5627Liam Hendriks is still only 24 years old. He owns a career 2.99 ERA in the minor leagues. He was dominant against Triple-A hitters as recently as last year. In so many respects, it seems far too soon to consider giving up on the Australian righty.

    Yet, after watching his downright miserable performance in Chicago on Monday night, it's awfully difficult to come away with any conclusion other than this: The Twins need to move on.

    Hendriks' latest ...
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  3. Three-Bagger: Deja Vu, Home Sickness & Being Like Beane

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ID:	5587* Parallels between the aftermaths of Joe Mauer's mid-August concussion and the one that derailed Justin Morneau's career in 2010 are frighteningly numerous.

    Much like Morneau, Mauer suffered his injury on a seemingly innocuous play -- a hard foul tip to the helmet, not noticeably different than the hundreds that had preceded it. Like with Morneau, the Twins did not initially express great concern over the severity of the incident. But, like Morneau, Mauer ...
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  4. Eddie Rosario as a Trade Chip

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ID:	5575With names like Byron Buxton, Miguel Sano and Alex Meyer stealing the headlines, Eddie Rosario tends to get overlooked in the universe of Twins prospects. Rosario didn't appear on the Top 100 prospect lists for MLB.com nor Baseball America prior to this season despite impressive production in both 2011 and 2012, but he figures to find his way onto everyone's lists now after crushing in Ft. Myers during the first half and finishing with a solid showing in New Britain ...
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  5. Why the Twins Will Spend This Offseason

    Will the Minnesota Twins increase payroll?There is a widespread assumption among Twins fans that the team will maintain its conservative approach this offseason and avoid making any big financial splashes. One could hardly be blamed for holding such a belief; that expectation has been engrained throughout the history of a franchise that has fostered a well deserved reputation for being extremely risk-averse.

    But when you take a look at the landscape of the organization and the circumstances ...
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  6. Twins' Rotation Is Out of Whack

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Size:  61.6 KBThe Twins entered this season with a wide assortment of "maybes" in their starting pitching mix, hoping that over the course of 162 games a couple would separate themselves from the pack and become established as sturdy options moving forward. In a transitional year where there was never any realistic expectation of winning, this was truly the overriding goal.

    The Twins talked about wanting to play meaningful games in September, they talked about wanting ...
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  7. What To Watch In September

    Let's face it: The Twins are going to have a tough time drawing much attention this month. They're limping their way toward another terrible finish, they just traded their second-biggest star, and of course the Vikings -- with reigning MVP Adrian Peterson -- are set to launch a fresh season on Sunday.

    It's a baseball wasteland.

    For us hopelessly devoted hardcores, though, there are a few developing storylines worth keeping an eye on as the Twins run out the string on ...
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  8. Time For Hicks to Make a Switch?

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ID:	5348Since returning to the minor leagues after his demotion in early August, Aaron Hicks has batted .417. Well, from the right side anyway.

    Unfortunately, he's only had 12 at-bats from that side because in Triple-A, like in the majors, the vast majority of pitchers are right-handers. And righties force the switch-hitting center fielder to the opposite batter's box, where he has posted a miserable .287 OPS in Rochester. Yuck.

    Overall, between the ...
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  9. What's the Plan: Byron Buxton

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ID:	5336As last year's No. 2 overall pick and the current consensus top prospect in baseball, Byron Buxton has drawn some lofty comparisons. You often hear his name mentioned alongside similarly well-rounded outfielders who dominated the minors and made a quick impact in the majors, such as Mike Trout and the Upton Brothers.

    One commonality between those three players? They all debuted in the big leagues as teenagers.

    That won't happen for Buxton, who ...
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  10. What's the Plan: Josmil Pinto

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ID:	5313When the Twins dealt away Wilson Ramos in exchange for Matt Capps at the 2010 trade deadline, the after-effects could hardly have been more unfortunate. The Twins fizzled out in the first round of the playoffs, with Capps unable to make any real impact. The next season, Ramos emerged as a Rookie of the Year contender for the Nationals while Joe Mauer's future behind the plate fell into doubt amidst debilitating lower-body injuries.

    The ill-fated swap ...
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  11. Liriano's Success Is Tough To Stomach

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ID:	5286On Monday night, Francisco Liriano spun perhaps his most impressive gem in a season that's been full of them. Facing the Padres in San Diego, the lefty hurled seven scoreless innings, striking out 13 and allowing only four hits to pick up his 14th win of the campaign.

    Through 19 starts for Pittsburgh, Liriano holds a 2.53 ERA, 1.18 WHIP and 126/47 strikeout-to-walk ratio with only five home runs allowed in 121 innings. He has been, in a word, sensational ...
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  12. What's the Plan: Eddie Rosario

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ID:	5266In 2011, Miguel Sano enjoyed a breakout season in Elizabethton, launching 20 homers in just 66 games for the Twins' advanced rookie-league affiliate. Because that dazzling performance served as a springboard for the young slugger, who has since graduated to elite prospect status, it can be easy to forget that Sano didn't even lead his team in home runs that year. No, that would be Eddie Rosario, who went deep 21 times and posted a 1.068 OPS for E-town -- one of the best ...
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  13. What's the Plan: Alex Meyer

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Size:  10.9 KBWhen they acquired him in exchange for Denard Span last winter, the Twins envisioned Alex Meyer as a power arm with front-end upside that could be plugged into the big-league rotation within a year or two.

    Unfortunately, although he has pitched well enough while on the field, his first season as part of the organization hasn't clarified a whole lot regarding his future. Meyer missed a full two months due to shoulder soreness and just recently began ...
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  14. What's the Plan: Miguel Sano

    In this new series, we'll take a look at several young players in the Twins' organization who may be ready to contribute by next season. How will they be handled? How should they be handled? What do their ascensions mean to players already on the MLB roster?

    What's the plan?

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    There may have been a short period of time where the clamor to see Miguel Sano promoted from Single-A looked a little silly in hindsight. After his first 13 games in Double-A ...
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