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  1. Twins Draft Preview: Tyler Kolek

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ID:	7599In each of the past two seasons, Twins pitchers have ranked dead last in the majors in strikeouts. They're on track to do so again this year.

    It's no coincidence that they've been extremely bad at preventing runs during that time. In today's MLB environment, where strikeouts are rapidly climbing league-wide, a "pitch-to-contact" staff profile doesn't fly.

    To their credit, the Twins seem to recognize this, and have recently made concerted ...
  2. Twins Playing Over Their Heads, But That's OK

    On Tuesday night, the Twins stole another one away.

    You'd have a hard time arguing they outplayed the Rangers, who outhit them 9-6 and had a one-run lead entering the ninth before Joakim Soria uncharacteristically blew a save (his first of the year, in fact) and took the loss when he misplayed a nubber back to the mound with the bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth.

    Hey, a win's a win.

    That's been a good mantra for the Twins, who find themselves within a ...
  3. It's All Right: Hicks Gives Up Switch-Hitting

    The first two years of Aaron Hicks' major-league career have been humbling to say the least. He's gone from first-round prep superstar and top prospect to apparent bust; from appointed center fielder and leadoff man to "unprepared" problem child.

    The skills that have carried Hicks to this point aren't keeping him afloat. But to his credit, the 24-year-old has proven willing to look inward, and is now implementing a drastic change.

    Hicks announced on Monday that he is ...
  4. Twins Draft Preview: Tyler Beede

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ID:	7542A top five pick in the MLB draft is a blessing and a burden. Getting it right can mean the addition of a franchise-altering talent. Getting it wrong can be very, very costly.

    Will the Twins stake their future on a pitcher as erratic yet electric as Tyler Beede?

    Who is this guy?

    Beede has been one of the elite young arms in the nation for some time now.

    In 2011, he was drafted 21st overall by the Blue Jays, who went ...
  5. Risers in the Twins Farm System

    The top end of the Minnesota Twins Top 10 Prospects list has unfortunately been marred by misfortune this year.

    No. 2 prospect Miguel Sano's season was over before it began, as he went under the knife for Tommy John surgery in March. The top guy, Byron Buxton, still hasn't been able to shake a nagging wrist injury that figures to cost him the first half of his season at least. Meanwhile, No. 5 prospect Eddie Rosario is finally set to return from a 50-game suspension next week. ...
  6. Revisiting Aaron Hicks and Switch-Hitting

    It appears that the Twins are running out of patience with Aaron Hicks.

    Last year, through 29 games, the outfielder was batting .133/.239/.214. This year, at the same point, his line is .170/.315/.239. While Hicks has shown an improved approach at the plate, he simply is not hitting the ball.

    The Twins took the 24-year-old to task publicly this week, with Ron Gardenhire and Rob Antony both bemoaning his lack of preparation, and it's not the first time they've tried ...
  7. Three-Bagger: Wristy Business, Jason K & Mauer Being Mauer

    * Florida's Jose Fernandez is the latest young star pitcher to be tabbed for Tommy John surgery, so elbow injuries have been the talk of baseball this week. Minnesota has plenty of experience in that department, most recently with first-round picks Kyle Gibson and Alex Wimmers.

    But currently, it's the wrist that has emerged as a major pain for young talents in the Twins organization.

    Oswaldo Arcia was bothered by a wrist injury last summer, and it has come back to ...
  8. Twins Need to Focus on Future, Not Old Favorites

    Without exception, each spot on a team's 25-man roster is important.

    In any given week, it is likely that every last one of those players will see action in a game. On a contending team, all 25 openings should ideally be filled by guys who can play a meaningful and valuable role.

    Those roster spots can also be used to protect assets. A rebuilding team might choose to put a Rule 5 pick in the last bullpen slot, or stash a project who's out of options at the end of the bench. ...
  9. What To Do With Chris Parmelee?

    He's at it again.

    Chris Parmelee's 2012 season could be looked at in two different ways. On the one hand, you had a rookie hitter who looked overwhelmed against major-league pitching. On the other hand, you had a 24-year-old absolutely demolishing in his first exposure to Triple-A pitching. He was far and away the best hitter in the International League that year.

    He followed up with a 2013 season that was simply a mess, both in the majors and the minors, and as a result ...
  10. Riffing on the Rotation

    As April has shifted into May, the Minnesota offense has cooled off a little bit but continues to get the job done. On Friday they were shut out for just the second time all year, but they bounced back to score 11 runs in a pair of wins on Saturday and Sunday. The series victory over the weekend brought the Twins back within a game of .500.

    The offense seems sustainably effective, with Joe Mauer starting to heat up, Oswaldo Arcia preparing to return, and several other lineup fixtures ...
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