• Marketable Twins (2nd of two-part series)

    Yesterday we took a look at four Twins who will have minimal value on the trade market. Today we’re going to look at the three who probably have the most value (if they’re made available… and no, Joe Mauer isn’t available).

    We’re going to skip Ryan Doumit and most of the bullpen. I feel like there are tradable assets there, so maybe we'll revisit that later.
    Justin Morneau

    Some people are holding out hope that a team will overpay for the former MVP. I don’t see that happening, but there is reason to be somewhat optimistic.

    A good trade comparison that happened last year was the Astros-Marlins trade: Carlos Lee and $9 million to cover the rest of his contract to the Miami Marlins for P Rob Rasmussen and 3B Matt Dominguez. Both Rasmussen (7) and Dominguez (4) were Top 10 prospects in the Marlins system. Dominguez is currently the Astros starting 3B (which really doesn’t mean much) and Rasmussen entered the year as the Astros #19 prospect.

    If the Twins were to pump in the $6-ish million to cover the rest of Morneau’s contract, the Twins could hope for similar return.

    Would you trade Justin Morneau and cash to the Yankees for RHP Brett Marshall and catcher J.R. Murphy?

    Marshall ranked as the Yankees’ #6 prospect coming into the season. His BA blurb is likely music to the Twins' brass' ears: “Marshall profiles as a durable, sinkerballing #4 starter – not the Yankees’ prototype prospect but a useful trade chip.” In May, Marshall made an appearance out of the Yankees bullpen, but has otherwise spent his season in the AAA rotation. Marshall turns 24 in the weeks leading up to Opening Day 2014.

    Murphy, ranked #15 on Yankee prospect lists, is catching in AAA after a promotion about a month ago. Murphy is more advanced offensively than defensively, but he is making progress. Adding another catcher to the group of Pinto, Herrmann and Butera would give the Twins added flexibility and open the door to trade either Ryan Doumit or Butera. (Maybe Butera could/would be thrown into this deal.)

    Plus, the icing on the cake (for me, anyway), is that the Twins could re-sign Morneau this winter. That is, if he’s open to a 2-year deal that doesn’t exceed $15 million total.

    Trevor Plouffe

    We debate whether or not Plouffe should be on the market. Some argue that he should be part of the long-term plans and I get that. In my mind, though, he’s still just a placeholder for the next wave. The issue with moving Plouffe is that the next wave isn’t ready yet.

    Plouffe is from Los Angeles and currently there are two teams that play in his hometown that could use an upgrade at the hot corner.

    At 27 – and under team control for four more seasons – Plouffe has value. He’s a replacement-level defender and is OPSing at about .770.
    Juan Uribe, who turns 34 next week, is having his best season since 2009 and statistically is almost the exact same player that Trevor Plouffe is both offensively (OPS of .764) and defensively (replacement-level) this year. Oh, and Uribe’s $7.3 million contract expires at the end of the season.

    I’m not sure if the Dodgers have a more expensive, accomplished 3B in their crosshairs, but Trevor Plouffe could be a guy that helps them out.

    Would you trade Trevor Plouffe and International Slot 4 ($203,300) to the Dodgers for (as @Jederdyer suggests) LHP Chris Reed plus (my suggestions) RHP Angel Sanchez, SS Darnell Sweeney and 3B Juan Uribe (and his expiring contract)?

    Reed would be the headliner. A first round pick out of Stanford in 2011, Reed, 23, is in the AA rotation and profiles as a mid-rotation starter with a mid-90s, heavy fastball and a plus slider. He compares favorably to current farmhand Trevor May, but has the same control/is he a bullpen guy questions.

    Sanchez, who had a dreadful 2012 in high-A has just recently been re-promoted there and has a live, projectable arm. He will turn 24 in November.

    Sweeney is a true shortstop but has had a ton of errors. He’s handling the bat pretty well in high-A, though and could be a sleeper prospect.

    Of course taking Uribe and saving the Dodgers about $4 million is part of the reason the prospect haul is better. Uribe can serve as the stopgap for the rest of this lost season.

    If you’d rather trade Plouffe to the Angels, who have one of the weakest farm systems in baseball, you’d probably have to take back Alberto Callaspo’s contract (almost $2 million for the rest of this season and $4,875,000 next season) and a couple Dominican pitchers who may have a higher ceiling, but a lower chance of reaching it.

    Glen Perkins

    Oh, and the hardest decision of them all. The Pony, Glen Perkins.

    If I dealt from my head, I’d trade Perkins in a heartbeat; the value of his return would be significant. If I let feelings get involved, though, I’d want Perkins here for the turn-around. A recent article on Fangraphs talks about how dealing Perkins should be the obvious answer.

    My asking price would be high and set in stone: A top 50 prospect (preferably a pitcher) and another really good prospect (preferably another pitcher).

    So which teams have those trade chips to offer and could use a left-handed closer? Well, the second part is easy to answer… in a nutshell, everybody.

    The Red Sox have been linked heavily to Jon Papelbon. I’d rather have Perkins.

    Would you trade Perkins for RHP Anthony Ranaudo (who is carving up AA and should be in AAA – or the Majors – soon) and RHP Francellis Montas (struggling in hi-A, at 20, but can hit 100). You could probably also talk the Red Sox into adding a close-to-the-majors reliever too.

    Ranaudo is a guy you could start in a playoff game, so he’s no worse than a #3 starter and he’s close. Montas is essentially a super-cool lottery ticket. Plus, when push comes to shove, the Red Sox will hopefully throw in a sweetener (or two).

    The Dodgers could use Perkins too.

    Would you trade Perkins for a deal centered around Zach Lee (currently in AA)? What if it was Lee and OF Joc Pederson(BA's mid-season #35 overall prospect)?

    I’d ask for a sweetener, but Lee and Pederson would be hard to turn down. Heck, I’d throw them some International Money too.

    How about the Pirates? Wouldn’t a Grilli/Perkins combination be pretty dynamite? I’d say so. Plus, they have motivation to make a move.

    You’re not getting Jameson Taillon. I doubt you’re getting Luis Heredia. I don’t know if they’d part with breakout starter Tyler Glasnow either.

    But what if they offered Heredia or Glasnow (both a few years away) plus SS Alen Hanson, who after having a breakout year in low-A at 19, is struggling in hi-A?

    On the record, the Pirates would be idiots to do that, but it wouldn’t hurt to ask. You know what would hurt, though? Teasing the fans of Pittsburgh with a great record only to miss the playoffs for the 21st consecutive year! They have motivation to make a move… and if they need a sweetener (Is Chris Parmelee an upgrade over Travis Snider?), I don’t think twice. Adding two Top 55 prospects to a system that will probably already have six (plus rookies Arcia, Hicks and Gibson just graduating) would be quite a feat.

    The Diamondbacks, who Seth recently profiled, would be a fit, too. But they’re on record saying they won’t move Tyler Skaggs or Archie Bradley. I’d probably take whichever one they’d want to give up, but, hey, the Twins are on record saying they aren’t moving their closer either. (If I were the Diamondbacks, I’d hold on to both… especially Bradley and wouldn’t trade either for a closer.)

    So what do you think? Do any of these moves excite you? Do any of these moves seem possible? Obviously these are only a few of thousands of scenarios. The fact remains, though, that the Twins are sellers and they need to (learn how to) behave like one.
    This article was originally published in blog: Marketable Twins (2nd of two-part series) started by Jeremy Nygaard
    Comments 38 Comments
    1. ThePuck's Avatar
      ThePuck -
      Quote Originally Posted by Sconnie View Post
      Agreed on all. I really like the Morneau to Loney comparison. The problem with it highlights how over paid Morneau is to his production (currently). The Twins would need to eat 6-7M of his existing contract to get any return. They should and must do so.
      Serious question. Have the Twins ever eaten salary in a trade since the 2000s began? I'm not sure that's an option for them strictly on philosophy, but again, don't know for sure. It's why I'm asking if anyone can give specifics.
    1. BabyJesusBuxton's Avatar
      BabyJesusBuxton -
      Quote Originally Posted by ThePuck View Post
      Serious question. Have the Twins ever eaten salary in a trade since the 2000s began? I'm not sure that's an option for them strictly on philosophy, but again, don't know for sure. It's why I'm asking if anyone can give specifics.
      I don't know the answer to this question but if it would be a first, this is the year for it to happen with the current payroll.
    1. Siehbiscuit's Avatar
      Siehbiscuit -
      I can't answer that either, but if the Twins did "eat" the remaining balance of Morneau's salary (approx $6million) I would assume the Twins would think of this similar to the draft or an international prospect. Would the Twins pay $6 million as signing bonus money for the handful of prospects that Morneau would fetch? My answer is no. If the money was closer to $2-3, then possibly. The Twins paid $6M to sign Buxton and $4+ to sign Stewart. I don't think they like the idea to give away a fan favorite and pay $6M and not get great/elite talent in return. The Marlins' prospects (Matt Dominguez being the headliner) were not elite by any stretch. Morneau's salary will not be "eaten" unless a team is willing to throw in something very substantial in a package that includes, a top 50 talent (which isn't going to happen).

      The Twins are about as fiscally conservative as it gets.
    1. nokomismod's Avatar
      nokomismod -
      As much as I like Perkins, I think you have to listen to offers and this is the perfect time to trade. I kind of expect Doumit and Carrol to be traded. Both veteran guys that would be great on a playoff contender, but who are taking up some "valuable" at bats on this team.
    1. Oxtung's Avatar
      Oxtung -
      Quote Originally Posted by Kwak View Post
      This is a very interesting article for discussion. I don't know squat about the non-Twins mentioned, but I am curious to know how likely any of these teams are to offering what was written.
      Trading Perkins is risky, but plausible. However, I think a good closer is worth someone very close to ML-ready and I would be very reluctant to make a trade that involved solely Class A "prospects".
      Trading Plouffe is even more risky than Perkins. Sano's numbers at AA aren't even at the "replacement player" level yet and to simply hand him 3B is courting disaster. Plouffe might even improve somewhat too.
      If Sano doesn't pan out or doesn't stick at 3B there are other options in the farm system long term. Travis Harrison at Beloit as well as Javier Pimentel and Amaurys Minier at rookie ball who were both big money international signings. They are all several years out so a stop gap FA would need to be signed but there is a potential replacement besides Sano in the Twins system.

      That said I wouldn't trade Plouffe either. He is a decent bat that could still be around when when the Twins are ready to compete. His positional versatility adds value as well.
    1. diehardtwinsfan's Avatar
      diehardtwinsfan -
      Quote Originally Posted by Oxtung View Post
      If Sano doesn't pan out or doesn't stick at 3B there are other options in the farm system long term. Travis Harrison at Beloit as well as Javier Pimentel and Amaurys Minier at rookie ball who were both big money international signings. They are all several years out so a stop gap FA would need to be signed but there is a potential replacement besides Sano in the Twins system.

      That said I wouldn't trade Plouffe either. He is a decent bat that could still be around when when the Twins are ready to compete. His positional versatility adds value as well.
      The problem with that is that these guys are a minimum of 3 years out.
    1. Oxtung's Avatar
      Oxtung -
      Quote Originally Posted by diehardtwinsfan View Post
      The problem with that is that these guys are a minimum of 3 years out.
      Yup. I was only making the point that it isn't Sano or bust.
    1. nicksaviking's Avatar
      nicksaviking -
      We haven't discussed Deduno at all. It probably is silly to bring up as the guy doesn't have a ton of experience which may limit his trade value, but he has performed on big stages with the WBC championship game and shutting down the Yankees today. He isn't even arbitration eligible until 2016 and not a free agent until 2019 which is pretty nice since no one would have to be concerned with contract talks until he is in his late 30's. The controlability is a reason to keep him as well, but every time people discuss the future of the Twins rotaion, they nearly always omit him from discussion.

      He's probably not worth a ton, but really, is there anyone to really compare his value to? I wonder.
    1. jorgenswest's Avatar
      jorgenswest -
      Quote Originally Posted by ThePuck View Post
      Serious question. Have the Twins ever eaten salary in a trade since the 2000s began? I'm not sure that's an option for them strictly on philosophy, but again, don't know for sure. It's why I'm asking if anyone can give specifics.
      I found two Terry Ryan trades that sent cash with the player

      Traded catcher A.J. Pierzynski and cash to the San Francisco Giants. Received pitchers Joe Nathan, Francisco Liriano, and Boof Bonser.

      Under the Rule 5 Draft, the Twins sent minor leaguer Jared Camp and cash to the Florida Marlins in exchange for Johan Santana.


    1. diehardtwinsfan's Avatar
      diehardtwinsfan -
      Quote Originally Posted by nicksaviking View Post
      We haven't discussed Deduno at all. It probably is silly to bring up as the guy doesn't have a ton of experience which may limit his trade value, but he has performed on big stages with the WBC championship game and shutting down the Yankees today. He isn't even arbitration eligible until 2016 and not a free agent until 2019 which is pretty nice since no one would have to be concerned with contract talks until he is in his late 30's. The controlability is a reason to keep him as well, but every time people discuss the future of the Twins rotaion, they nearly always omit him from discussion.

      He's probably not worth a ton, but really, is there anyone to really compare his value to? I wonder.
      I don't know if I would trade him personally. He's made good strides on the control aspect of things. The K's have dropped off quite a bit, but I'm also guessing that he needs one, he can return to whatever it is he was doing to get them. He's perfectly fine as a 5th starter for the time being to augment some of the better pitchers coming up through the system, and right now I'm more bullish on him than just about anyone else in the rotation (minus Gibson).
    1. diehardtwinsfan's Avatar
      diehardtwinsfan -
      Quote Originally Posted by jorgenswest View Post
      I found two Terry Ryan trades that sent cash with the player

      Traded catcher A.J. Pierzynski and cash to the San Francisco Giants. Received pitchers Joe Nathan, Francisco Liriano, and Boof Bonser.

      Under the Rule 5 Draft, the Twins sent minor leaguer Jared Camp and cash to the Florida Marlins in exchange for Johan Santana.


      Interesting, considering those were by far the best trades Ryan ever made, and both might possibly be one of the 10 most lopsided trades of all time.
    1. ThePuck's Avatar
      ThePuck -
      Quote Originally Posted by jorgenswest View Post
      I found two Terry Ryan trades that sent cash with the player

      Traded catcher A.J. Pierzynski and cash to the San Francisco Giants. Received pitchers Joe Nathan, Francisco Liriano, and Boof Bonser.

      Under the Rule 5 Draft, the Twins sent minor leaguer Jared Camp and cash to the Florida Marlins in exchange for Johan Santana.


      I'm pretty sure the Twins traded Camp FOR Santana and Cash.

      'Back in 1999, Camp, a then rocket-throwing prospect, was traded from the Twins to the Florida Marlins for cash, and some dude named, Johan Santana.'

      'After the 1999 major league season, he was left unprotected by the Houston Astros and eligible in the Rule 5 draft. The Minnesota Twins had the first pick that year, the Florida Marlins had the second. The Twins made a deal with the Marlins: the Twins would draft Jared Camp with their first pick and the Marlins would draft Santana. The teams would exchange the two players with the Twins receiving $50,000 to cover their pick.[2][3]'

      Thanks for the info on AJ though. So we have one example. Do we think he does it again with Morneau?
    1. Oxtung's Avatar
      Oxtung -
      Quote Originally Posted by ThePuck View Post
      I'm pretty sure the Twins traded Camp FOR Santana and Cash.

      'Back in 1999, Camp, a then rocket-throwing prospect, was traded from the Twins to the Florida Marlins for cash, and some dude named, Johan Santana.'

      'After the 1999 major league season, he was left unprotected by the Houston Astros and eligible in the Rule 5 draft. The Minnesota Twins had the first pick that year, the Florida Marlins had the second. The Twins made a deal with the Marlins: the Twins would draft Jared Camp with their first pick and the Marlins would draft Santana. The teams would exchange the two players with the Twins receiving $50,000 to cover their pick.[2][3]'

      Thanks for the info on AJ though. So we have one example. Do we think he does it again with Morneau?
      Baseball Reference confirms. Camp to Marlins for Santana + Cash.
    1. ScottyB's Avatar
      ScottyB -
      Do the Twins have any minor leaguers who might end up as rule 5 next year who we could lose but might not be part of our future, that we could use as sweeteners in a trade? They might not bring much but could be used as chips to save us from paying full salaries of players we trade.
    1. Oxtung's Avatar
      Oxtung -
      Quote Originally Posted by ScottyB View Post
      Do the Twins have any minor leaguers who might end up as rule 5 next year who we could lose but might not be part of our future, that we could use as sweeteners in a trade? They might not bring much but could be used as chips to save us from paying full salaries of players we trade.
      Players eligible for the rule 5 draft include Jorge Polanco, Max Kepler, AJ Achter, Kennys Vargas, Logan Darnell, Alex Wimmers, Andrew Albers, Candido Pimentel, Angel Morales, Matt Hauser, Deibinson Romero, Nate Roberts, Daniel Ortiz, Manuel Soliman, Adrian Salcedo, Ryan O'Rourke, Tom Stuifbergen and Aaron Thompson. However I'm not sure there are many sweetners there that the Twins wouldn't want themselves. The Twins are relying on their prospects to bring them back to relevance and so trading any that might eventually help you seems unwise.

      There are plenty of potential openings on the 40 man roster including: Wilkin Ramirez, Drew Butera, Colabello, Clete Thomas, Cole De Vries, BJ Hermsen, Mike Pelfrey, Jamey Carrol, Liam Hendriks, PJ Walters, Sam Deduno, Escobar or Florimon, Thielbar, Pedro Hernandez, Duensing, Swarzak and Danny Santana. Clearly some of these will be on the 2014 40 man roster but each of these players is vulnerable in one way or another IMO.
    1. jokin's Avatar
      jokin -
      Quote Originally Posted by Oxtung View Post
      Players eligible for the rule 5 draft include Jorge Polanco, Max Kepler, AJ Achter, Kennys Vargas, Logan Darnell, Alex Wimmers, Andrew Albers, Candido Pimentel, Angel Morales, Matt Hauser, Deibinson Romero, Nate Roberts, Daniel Ortiz, Manuel Soliman, Adrian Salcedo, Ryan O'Rourke, Tom Stuifbergen and Aaron Thompson. However I'm not sure there are many sweetners there that the Twins wouldn't want themselves. The Twins are relying on their prospects to bring them back to relevance and so trading any that might eventually help you seems unwise.

      There are plenty of potential openings on the 40 man roster including: Wilkin Ramirez, Drew Butera, Colabello, Clete Thomas, Cole De Vries, BJ Hermsen, Mike Pelfrey, Jamey Carrol, Liam Hendriks, PJ Walters, Sam Deduno, Escobar or Florimon, Thielbar, Pedro Hernandez, Duensing, Swarzak and Danny Santana. Clearly some of these will be on the 2014 40 man roster but each of these players is vulnerable in one way or another IMO.
      PJ Walters has already passed through waivers.
    1. AM.'s Avatar
      AM. -
      Quote Originally Posted by diehardtwinsfan View Post
      I don't know if I would trade him personally. He's made good strides on the control aspect of things. The K's have dropped off quite a bit, but I'm also guessing that he needs one, he can return to whatever it is he was doing to get them. He's perfectly fine as a 5th starter for the time being to augment some of the better pitchers coming up through the system, and right now I'm more bullish on him than just about anyone else in the rotation (minus Gibson).
      This. Compelling argument to keep him, he may turn into a long term, valuable asset. If he keeps improving his control, he could become pretty good.
    1. Oxtung's Avatar
      Oxtung -
      Quote Originally Posted by jokin View Post
      PJ Walters has already passed through waivers.
      Thanks, I need to update my spreadsheet!
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