After a session with the teamís brass, Twins manager Ron Gardenhire emerged from their war room (war not WAR) at the Nashville hotel and, following the trade of Denard Span, told the MLB Network that they were ďtrading my whole damn team.Ē
While it could be just a tongue-in-cheek response from the manager who is known to add some snark, because of the teamís current status of a bottom-dwelling squad without a rotation, the sentiment should be true.
Yesterday, the Twins traded a known commodity in center fielder Denard Span for the potential of right-hander Alex Meyer, a 6-foot-9, hard-throwing and former first round pick with talents that have impressed prospect pundits.
While the Nationals get immediately better, the Twins will have to wait to see if Meyerís talent pans out.
Hereís what we know about Meyer: He can throw in the upper 90s (ooh!) coupled with a devastating breaking pitch (ahh!) and is really super
The Star Tribuneís LaVelle Neal reported yesterday that the Twins officials have been in contact with Francisco Lirianoís representatives and will meet next week in Nashville during the winter meetings.
To many Twins fans, the news probably inspired a palm to the face followed by a head to the desk. After all, Liriano has been as bad of a starter in the past two seasons not named Nick Blackburn -- another reason to repeat the face-palm and head-desk combination.
This is back-of-the-napkin type math based on a lot of assumption so please, do not attempt to cite the concluded numbers as final. They are, in essence, an educated guess that is founded from bits and pieces of available public information. But letís use it to attempt to figure out why the Tigers are able to make it rain on the free agent market while the Twins are left counting pennies.
The Tigers recently signed Torii Hunter to a two-year, $26 million deal.
One of the more notable batted ball tendencies out of Joe Mauerís 2012 season is that for the first time in his career, he actually pulled the ball more often than he went the other way.
This happened very quietly, perhaps because he still managed to spray the entire field with hits and, admittedly, it was not as if he was launching majestic shots onto the plaza with this new found tendency to make anyone take notice. Rather, the Twins backstop/first baseman/designated
Over in Indian Wells, California baseballís head honchos are engaged in debates regarding rule changes, safety regulations and Ken Rosenthalís choice of bow ties. In between that and the golfing, teams have been aggressive in their pursuits for available talent.
ďIíve been in this business 21 years, and Iíve never seen anything like it,Ē said pitcher Anibal Sanchezís agent, Gene Mato of SFX. ďThis is moving really, really fast.Ē
Even the Twins
Rather than spew out some analysis based on hot stove rumors and theories (which I've already done on Shaun Marcum and Kevin Youkilis, by the way), I thought I would take the opportunity to field some burning questions from the Twins Daily followers via Twitter.
On to your questions:
Who will be the Twins starting rotation on Opening Day? [@MichaelRHerman]
As the Twins have said since the season started winding down in September,
If you were going to create a list of the Twins' offseason needs, you would likely write in big, bold letters STARTING PITCHING and underline it twice and put some exclamation points next to it for safe measure.
Clearly this area of the team put the Twins in significant default night after night. Shackled to the American League's worst earned run average (5.40), the focal point of the front office will be to beg,borrow and steal anything they can that can
The worst kept secret in baseball is that teams need an abundance of starting pitching. Like crack, you can never have enough.
Also, pitching, like crack, can be an expensive endeavor Ė particularly when you need a lot of it. And this is exactly the position the Twins are in so said the teamís general manager, Terry Ryan, during his offseason apology tour.
In a recent interview with Twins Dailyís John Bonnes, Ryan admitted that his financial
As Seth Stohs mentioned yesterday, while the rest of us at Twins Daily were all stark raving mad about Kyle Gibsonís performance in the Arizona Fall League, another Twins prospect was making noise even further south. Outfielder Aaron Hicks, who is playing winter ball in Venezuela, is off to a fast start this offseason, matching the expectation he set from his in-season performance at New Britain.
Just over a year removed from his Tommy John surgery, Twins pitching prospect Kyle Gibson has made two encouraging starts in Arizona, firing 92-to-95-mph bullets and keeping the gameís top prospects off-balanced with an 83-86-mph slider.
Thatís right: Hitting 95 miles per hour according to the Pitch F/X system in Arizona.
Letís take a look at why his AFL performance should give Twins fans hope.
According to MLB.com, Gibson has been aware of the velocity increase
For the past four years, we have produced an Offseason Handbook to put fans in the driverís seat of the Twins franchise. Within it, we highlight all of the winterís impending free agents, potential trade targets and review the organizationís strengths and weaknesses from top to bottom. This culminates with the presentation of our blueprints to improving the team.
In my blueprint, I laid out a fairly elementary explanation as to why the Twins failed so miserably
Joe Mauer hit just one infield fly ball all year making his 1.0% infield fly rate the second lowest in all of baseball. Thatís a significant increase over his totals last year when he did not hit a single fly ball to anyone in the infield. See, there is still plenty of reason to boo him.
Mauer is often credited with having the perfect swing, and the fact that he is not popping pitches up to the second baseman is telling how square he hits the ball. That said
Joe Mauerís noble effort to obtain his fourth batting title was thwarted when those cyborgs known as Miguel Cabrera and Mike Trout were unrelenting.
That notwithstanding, this has been an outstanding rebound season for the Twins catcher.
Considering the slow start by his standards, his .320 average heading into the last day of the season is impressive nonetheless. At the beginning of May, his average was down to .270 before he checked into the