Minnesota Twins News & Rumors Forum
  • Pressure is on for Twins starters

    Kyle Gibson is anxious to finally reach the big leagues, and he's currently making a strong case in Triple-A with a 3.32 ERA and 1.16 WHIP through seven starts. His most recent outing was his most impressive: a complete game shutout with eight strikeouts, two walks and four hits.

    Gibson is on an innings limit this year and has already logged 40 innings in Rochester, increasing the urgency to call him up soon so he can spend time adjusting to the majors, thus preparing himself for a full, successful season in 2014. But space is limited in the Twins' rotation and Gibson is not the only one vying for a spot.

    Unlike Gibson, Cole De Vries was actually in line to land in the major-league rotation this spring before suffering a forearm injury that set him back about a month. De Vries made his second rehab start in New Britain on Friday night, allowing two runs over five innings and prompting Rob Antony to say De Vries is "getting close."

    Then there's Samuel Deduno. After starring in the World Baseball Classic, he also had his chance to make the Twins sabotaged by injury. He's now back and pitching in Rochester, where he has a 0.87 ERA through two starts. Deduno's control has been characteristically bad, as he's issued eight walks (against nine strikeouts) in his 10 1/3 innings of work, but he's shown the ability to succeed in spite of the walks before, and the Twins owe him a look based on the results he's gotten.

    All three of these hurlers deserve a chance with the Twins, who rank 26th in the majors with a 5.04 starting pitchers' ERA. That's not even mentioning prospects Alex Meyer and Trevor May, who are excelling in Double-A. But where will the club find room?

    Scott Diamond and Kevin Correia are entrenched. Mike Pelfrey seems safe after showing signs of improvement in his past few starts. Vance Worley might be getting into dangerous territory as his bad results -- and bad luck -- have persisted through eight starts. Pedro Hernandez is probably one more dud away from getting bumped, so it's unsurprising that the left-hander declined to go on the bereavement list after the death of his cousin last week. His career is on the line right now.

    The presence of legitimate options in the minors creates a dynamic that has been lacking in Minnesota's rotation over the past couple years. Pitchers are feeling pressure to get the job done because there are players ready to take their jobs, for good. Turnover in this unit will be looked at mostly as a positive.

    We've grown accustomed to injuries and performance issues leaving the starting corps decimated; when was the last time that finding enough room for all their starters was a challenge for the Twins?
    This article was originally published in blog: Pressure is on for Twins starters started by Nick Nelson
    Comments 40 Comments
    1. jun's Avatar
      jun -
      Quote Originally Posted by joeboo_22 View Post
      The thing with Hernadez is he has to get more efficient, even when he is at his best he is a 5 inning guy. As a lefty with decent stuff, getting sent down to AAA could do him some good. As for Worley I think AAA will end up for him, but traditionally coming back from elbow surgery your command isn't 100%, he just needs to get the ball down, I think that will come, but yeah AAA is getting to be a realistic option. Pelfry, he hasn't been bad, I think he is a guy you just put out every 5 days and hope he has some trade value come July.
      Pelfry, he hasn't been bad? An ERA over 6? How bad is considered bad?
    1. jun's Avatar
      jun -
      Quote Originally Posted by Brock Beauchamp View Post
      AA? Wha?
      Yeah I am not so sure if he could succeed in AAA now.
    1. TKGuy's Avatar
      TKGuy -
      Quote Originally Posted by ThePuck View Post
      An update: Our rotation is now 27th with an ERA of 5.18
      Think where we'd be without Correia
    1. Riverbrian's Avatar
      Riverbrian -
      Quote Originally Posted by Blackjack View Post
      Terry Ryan said on Sid's show that Worley DOES have an option left. Both him and Gardenhire emphasized that Worley needs to get the ball down. I would think after another bad start or two he'll be sent to AAA. They need him to work out the kinks by starting, not in the bullpen.
      I'm glad to hear TR and Gardy say this about Worley. I had great seats behind home plate for Worley's start on Saturday. I was watching him as close as I could.

      He was completely unremarkable. His Two-seamer was coming in 88-89MPH and it was up and flat and he wasn't going to a breaking ball or anything off speed very often in the first couple of innings.

      He was a little more effective when he started mixing things up and he was spotting his two seamer down and getting a little drop on it but all in all... Keeping it down seemed to be a chore.

      Its a complicated thing. How long do you let the starters work through things on a major league mound? I don't know the answer and I hope that Gardy, Andy and TR have a good idea on what to do. We cant keep trotting out pitchers who are plus 5 ERA's...

      If I had to make the decision. Hernandez is first on the list. I would give him tonight and tonight only to earn another start. If he gets roughed up tonight... Call the traveling secretary the very second Gardy takes the ball from his hand and send him on his way to Rochester. We are all dying to see Gibson but you replace Pedro with the guy who is looking like he can get outs at MLB level right now. If that's Gibson... OK... But this isn't the time to bring up the future to gain experience. Bring up the guy who will be best at getting guys out.

      Worley and Pelfrey... I have no idea how much rope to give them. If they don't show something soon... Maybe Gibson or Deduno will just end up showing something instead and force the decision.
    1. YourHouseIsMyHouse's Avatar
      YourHouseIsMyHouse -
      Pelfrey's sinker was fantastic last start, so much that he was using it exclusively against a few batters. He'll need to continue from last time to establish some ground in the rotation. Worley has been the worst starter for sure.
    1. jokin's Avatar
      jokin -
      Quote Originally Posted by Riverbrian View Post


      1) Its a complicated thing. How long do you let the starters work through things on a major league mound? I don't know the answer and I hope that Gardy, Andy and TR have a good idea on what to do. We cant keep trotting out pitchers who are plus 5 ERA's...

      2) If I had to make the decision. Hernandez is first on the list. I would give him tonight and tonight only to earn another start. If he gets roughed up tonight...
      1) Who says you can't keep trotting out plus 5+ ERA starters? Did you forget about 2011 and 2012?

      2) Oh ye of little faith, RB! I think you neglected to take into account the "team that traded you effect." Look for Pedro to put in a decent performance tonight!
    1. cmathewson's Avatar
      cmathewson -
      Does Worley have options?
    1. ThePuck's Avatar
      ThePuck -
      Quote Originally Posted by cmathewson View Post
      Does Worley have options?
      As Blackjack said earlier on this thread: 'Terry Ryan said on Sid's show that Worley DOES have an option left. '
    1. Brodin4Calder's Avatar
      Brodin4Calder -
      Anyone else excited for when our roto is Meyer, Gibson, Diamond, Berrios and May? Oh and possibly Manaea or Stewart. Our lineup right now is all guys that have a hard time throwing above 90mph and cant get Ks which lead to the ball being in play every at bat. Our lineup 2-3 years from now will have a few guys that throw hard in the mid 90s and can get Ks. We will finaly be able to look forward to watching our pitchers every game, im pretty bored of watching Worley try to throw 90mph.
    1. Riverbrian's Avatar
      Riverbrian -
      Quote Originally Posted by jokin View Post
      1) Who says you can't keep trotting out plus 5+ ERA starters? Did you forget about 2011 and 2012?

      2) Oh ye of little faith, RB! I think you neglected to take into account the "team that traded you effect." Look for Pedro to put in a decent performance tonight!
      1. I do remember those years and 2012 especially IMO... Starting Pitching was why we are drafting 4th overall this year... You know me... I'm Mr. Half Full. I was disappointed by the lack of a larger name FA SP signing but I talked myself into feeling better by thinking that quantity over quality can still work and it still can... But... It can only work if TR and Gardy are willing to make hard decisions. IE... Starting pitcher struggling replaced by the next option. We have 3 that are struggling out of the current 5. We've moved past Hendriks but that was easy because he has options and isn't MLB established. These kind of calls get much harder with established pitchers like Pelfrey and Worley.

      We have every reason to expect average pitching with the number of options we have. But we can't be average if we stay with below average and don't give the ball to someone else and expect him to be at least average.

      2. Yeah... I'm pulling for Pedro while still waiting for Deduno and Gibson. It's a conflicted feeling in the pit of my stomach.
    1. Riverbrian's Avatar
      Riverbrian -
      Quote Originally Posted by Brodin4Calder View Post
      Anyone else excited for when our roto is Meyer, Gibson, Diamond, Berrios and May? Oh and possibly Manaea or Stewart. Our lineup right now is all guys that have a hard time throwing above 90mph and cant get Ks which lead to the ball being in play every at bat. Our lineup 2-3 years from now will have a few guys that throw hard in the mid 90s and can get Ks. We will finaly be able to look forward to watching our pitchers every game, im pretty bored of watching Worley try to throw 90mph.
      I'm very excited but I try to temper that excitement because these guys still have to grab the opportunity by the horns when the opportunity comes. That ain't ever a sure thang.
    1. jokin's Avatar
      jokin -
      Quote Originally Posted by jun View Post
      Could you tell me what you meant by Hernandez range? How many starts has Hernandez had in the major? Go easy on the rookie. I think he is a good lefty who might have a chance to succeed in the ML if he could work hard and focus.
      Just quoting his current ERA. I like him too, particularly as a lefty option- most likely in a relief role, but his last 2 starts have ballooned his numbers.
    1. fairweather's Avatar
      fairweather -
      Hernandez is better than he's being given credit for on this thread.
    1. Nick Nelson's Avatar
      Nick Nelson -
      Quote Originally Posted by fairweather View Post
      Hernandez is better than he's being given credit for on this thread.
      Based on what?
    1. jun's Avatar
      jun -
      Quote Originally Posted by Nick Nelson View Post
      Based on what?
      Hernandez did pitch a good game against Texas Rangers. 5 innings of shutout ballgame against that lineup is impressive to me. He threw only 80 pitches and got pulled, his last inning was clean.
    1. Brock Beauchamp's Avatar
      Brock Beauchamp -
      Quote Originally Posted by YourHouseIsMyHouse View Post
      Pelfrey's sinker was fantastic last start, so much that he was using it exclusively against a few batters. He'll need to continue from last time to establish some ground in the rotation. Worley has been the worst starter for sure.
      Worley has only been worse in ERA. His peripherals have actually been better than Pelfrey once you adjust for luck-based stats like BABIP and HR%, things pitchers can't really control.

      Both have been bad but Worley has been extremely unlucky while Pelfrey has been moderately unlucky to extremely lucky depending on the peripheral.

      Which is apparent by Worley's xFIP of 4.5 and Pelfrey's 5.2.
    1. cmathewson's Avatar
      cmathewson -
      Quote Originally Posted by Riverbrian View Post
      I'm glad to hear TR and Gardy say this about Worley. I had great seats behind home plate for Worley's start on Saturday. I was watching him as close as I could.

      He was completely unremarkable. His Two-seamer was coming in 88-89MPH and it was up and flat and he wasn't going to a breaking ball or anything off speed very often in the first couple of innings.

      He was a little more effective when he started mixing things up and he was spotting his two seamer down and getting a little drop on it but all in all... Keeping it down seemed to be a chore.
      This is the thing. I'd like to see a Parkeresque video analysis of his pitches now vs when he was going good for Philly. I have seen some footage from that year and his sinker was filthy. I'm not seeing that at all right now. It's flat and barely has any movement of any kind. What worries me is he says the ball is coming out of his hand good. But it sure isn't doing what it did when he was good. This is not the pitcher I expected to be getting in this trade.
    1. IdahoPilgrim's Avatar
      IdahoPilgrim -
      Quote Originally Posted by Brodin4Calder View Post
      Anyone else excited for when our roto is Meyer, Gibson, Diamond, Berrios and May? Oh and possibly Manaea or Stewart. Our lineup right now is all guys that have a hard time throwing above 90mph and cant get Ks which lead to the ball being in play every at bat. Our lineup 2-3 years from now will have a few guys that throw hard in the mid 90s and can get Ks. We will finaly be able to look forward to watching our pitchers every game, im pretty bored of watching Worley try to throw 90mph.
      We need to make sure those prospects actually do turn into quality starters, but, yeah! I can get down with that!
    1. stringer bell's Avatar
      stringer bell -
      I finally checked the Twins' schedule and see that they have an off-day Thursday. That would mean that Gibson could still replace Hernandez with normal rest on Sunday. I hope that Gibson has another strong outing and that the Twins pull the trigger and bring Kyle up to the minors. At this point, Hernandez isn't a capable starter and so far neither are Pelfrey and Worley.
    1. Willihammer's Avatar
      Willihammer -
      Its the same problem Parker identified in the offseason, Worley's lack of a 3rd pitch. Take a look at his contact rates on his 2ndary pitches so far. According to fangraph's pitch classifications at least, every single Changeup thrown for a strike and swung on has been contacted. Every single curveball swung on has been contacted whether it was in the zone - or, out of the zone. 100%! The sample sizes are still small but that is not a good sign. Contact rates for hitters at least, are among the first things to stabilize.

      Guys who don't have a 3rd pitch belong in the pen.
©2014 TwinsCentric, LLC. All Rights Reserved.
Interested in advertising with Twins Daily? Click here.