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Thread: What would be a successful 2014 for the Twins?

  1. #61
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    Ah, I forgot PINTO, thanks for the reminder.

    Those are some of the goals I'd want for a succesful 2014, not all. Really, a succesful 2014 would put them in position to be in the playoff race in 2015 and beyond.
    Lighten up Francis....

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  3. #62
    Twins Moderator All-Star twinsnorth49's Avatar
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    In pro sports the only thing that matters is winning, that is the only measure of success. I'll consider the season successful if the Twins win. Things such as prospects reaching the MLB level and becoming impact players, or being in contention in the Fall/ reaching the playoffs are merely progress.

    I'm ok with seeing progress, but personally I wouldn't call it success.

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  5. #63
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    I would like to see the team progress successfully. How's that for walking the line?

    Young guys make leaps, future assets get sorted out from soon-to-be-DFAs, a clear sense of which SPs are worth taking forward. Others have posted these lists more thoughtfully. I have one more thing to add- I really want to see the Willingham/Pelfrey/Correia/Kubel group have a good year, and teach the young players how to grow in the major leagues.

  6. #64
    Twins News Team All-Star TheLeviathan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChiTownTwinsFan View Post
    If these are goals you hope are achieved and they are, that is success. It's just not the ultimate success.
    I think this and what JB said are why it's not fair to say "No, it won't be successful because they aren't making the playoffs/winning the title" It's just not a fair or realistic way of measuring success for this year. We do this all the time in real life too. Yes we have some objective measures we apply, but we also take into account limitations.

    To me, progress is success THIS year. In future years, that bar will rise with the talent on the team. Right now, with this groups talent, I just don't want them to be playing Red Skeleton's music during the team's performance.

    Mike said better what I was getting at - the last two years feel utterly wasted. I just want to feel like we're taking a step in the right direction this year and for the competency of play to allow me to enjoy baseball. By the end of June I was just forcing myself to stay engaged it was so bad.

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  8. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheLeviathan View Post
    By the end of June I was just forcing myself to stay engaged it was so bad.


    End of June, you say? Which year? {Cue "Red Skeleton" theme]

  9. #66
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    Here's a quote from the late John Wooden that I have always loved and felt was relevant to this topic: "Success is a peace of mind, attained only through self-satisfaction and knowing you made the effort to do the best that you are capable.”

    As I relate this to the Twins and only the things that they can control, I would say a "successful" 2014 season for this TEAM consists of playing competitive games into September and having the opportunity to sniff the playoffs. This lineup and pitching staff on paper is still not great. It's better than 2013, but we were 96 games bad last year. What is the best this team could do if we got career years from EVERYONE? Could the Twins win the division?

    This team is still very flawed. Re-inforcement that are coming are 20-23 years old and will also take their lumps. 2014's squad needs to focus on individual improvement and progress. As each of them get better the collective will improve, including the W/L column. Optimistic, pessimistic or even high and low standard fans all want wins. I am optimistic most every year because I want to believe my team can win. My standard for 2014 though is to get to .500 ball and be set up for Buxton in 2015 not to have to play savior, but be a great piece to an already blossoming young team.

  10. #67
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    Success to me would be making progress in sorting out who is a prospect and who are suspects. Starting to revamp the roster to younger better players and less of the older gap fillers. That means the Willinghams and the Kubels have little place on this team long term, Willingham will hopefully have a good have year and be traded for more prospects, Kubel probably should not be on the team unless Parmelle is a failure(and I think he is). Hope Gibson or Meyer will be the fifth starter and think Worley will make the team either as a starter or a reliever. Pressly can be sent to AAA and see if he can be converted back to a starter. If he is kept as a reliever then TR will have to see if he can get anything for Worley or Diamond.

  11. #68
    I agree with gunnarthor about the development of our young studs, but will go one step further. We need to see these at least half of these guys at the major league level at some point this year. If we reduce our losses to 87 this year without seeing these guys up with the Twins, that is not something to be happy about. Odds are they will struggle right away, so if we don't see them until 2015 we would more than likely dip back into the 90+ losses season. Let's get back to Twins baseball, playing the game the right way. Hit the cutoff, steal some bases when we need runs, put the ball in play with runners in scoring position, play good defense, etc. I'm hoping that adding Molitor to the staff will once again make the games fun to watch as he instills his attitude to the team. Put the Nishioka years of not knowing the game behind us once and for all.

  12. #69
    Yes, but if like half of these come to fruition, the team will win more games. If hitting improves, for example, the win total will go up. I am not expecting them to be in contention, I just want with in 4 or 5 games of .500 when it is all said and done. If some of the key guys like Dozier, Arcia and even Mauer continue what they have done in the past and we see promising starts from Meyer, Sano in the majors and Buxton in the minors, this will be a good season.

  13. #70
    Many of the most important measures of success for the Twins organization will have absolutely nothing to do with the Twins competing for a playoff spot. For that matter, they won’t be all that closely tied to their record. It will be a very successful season IMO if 1/4 of the things below happened. If one-third of them happen, the Twins are going to be great for several years.

    Sano tears up AAA / Debuts in July and lives up to his potential
    Buxton tears up AA / Promoted to AAA midseason and tears up AAA
    Buxton debuts at Target Field in September
    Kyle Gibson finds consistency at AAA / Promoted to Twins and has a sub 4 ERA.
    Correia is traded at the deadline for value and is replaced by Deduno who pitches well
    Alex Meyer makes the big club and shows the potential to be a true ace.
    Hughes surprises us and is much better away from the circus that is NY
    Deduno starts out on DL / Rehabs at AAA where he is awesome / rejoins the ML club
    Stewart AND Gonsalves emerge as elite pitching prospects
    Ryan Eades proves why some analysts believe he has a ceiling of a #2.
    Rosario kills AAA pitching after serving suspension / Promoted to Twins by 8/1.
    Berrios & Thorpe continue to add strength and continue to develop toward a 2/3.
    Danny Santana becomes more consistent on D an emerges as a top SS prospect
    Polanco / Kepler / Harrison / Turner / Walker firmly establish top prospect status
    Hicks adapts and becomes an above average starter.
    Pinto proves last September was no fluke
    Willingham starts out hot and is traded at the deadline for value
    Willingham is replaced by Hicks who is playing well at AAA / Plays well for Twins
    Plouffe starts out strong and is traded for value when replaced by Sano
    Twins 2014 pick shows great potential

  14. #71
    Twins Moderator MVP ashburyjohn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by USAFChief View Post
    Well, the question asked was "what would be a successful season," which is unrelated to "how do you get there?"
    While my example was a bit of a strawman to make a point, I would say from watching colleagues in the business world that if you aren't careful about how you define success then the people charged with achieving that success can be awfully creative about how they get there and you can end up with unwanted long-term results as they pursue their career objectives via short-term activities.

  15. #72
    Senior Member Big-Leaguer Joe A. Preusser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nate Haseman View Post
    There is nothing elitist or condescending about wanting a team to win championships. I love this team through thick and thin, and I enjoy watching or listening to all the games. But not wanting your team to win the World Series every year is just freakin un-American! I think if the Twins make a run at winning the central I'll consider it a success, and I subscribe to the school of thought that thinks "this is a baseball and anything can happen." If we make the playoffs anything can happen in a seven game series.
    The difference is between wanted and expecting. I want the Twins to win the WS every year. I don't expect them to, nor should I. Yankee fans have come (or at least they used to) to expect a WS win every year.

  16. #73
    Senior Member Big-Leaguer Joe A. Preusser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheLeviathan View Post
    While I appreciated, and agreed with, the spirit of the message that success alone shouldn't be measured in titles.....you completely lost me here. A team should always expect to contend as a goal, there is nothing shallow about that.
    Yeah, I did overstate that a bit. The Yanks did develop a core of nice players early that decade. Subsequently they added a LOT of high (over?) priced FAs to extend their run of dominance. Similar to LA the last several years; if they want a player, they will spend enough to break the bank of every other team, then do it again the next year, and the next. That is what I perceive of shallow. The difference between earning a title and buying one.
    Nor am I a Twins apologist. There is no doubt they made plenty of mistakes over the last 20 years that contributed to some very poor teams.

  17. #74
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    Without starting another thread can I ask the success=wining=championship crowd answer a follow up question. Is success esential to you enjoying the Twins. Think about one person's definition and over 50 years the Twins would be considered an abject failure as they do not go deep into playoffs. They fail to win more games than they lose 56% of the time. I would appreciate a couple answers

  18. #75
    Twins Moderator All-Star twinsnorth49's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Wise One View Post
    Without starting another thread can I ask the success=wining=championship crowd answer a follow up question. Is success esential to you enjoying the Twins. Think about one person's definition and over 50 years the Twins would be considered an abject failure as they do not go deep into playoffs. They fail to win more games than they lose 56% of the time. I would appreciate a couple answers
    It has nothing to do with my enjoyment of the Twins on a day to day basis, I love baseball and I love the Twins and that is ultimately why I watch, that has nothing to do with determining success.

    In my view pro sports are a one way street, you play to win, and if you don't how do you call the season a success? There is only one successful team at the end of every baseball season, the team that won, everyone else goes back to the drawing board and tries to figure what it takes to be that one team. Sure some of those teams can take positives out of a season but that's just using the term success and surrounding it with their own context. Semantics? Maybe.

    It's a fine line between winning and losing which means it's a fine line between success and failure. I don't think you'd talk to many players whose season ended without a championship calling it a success, ultimately winning is the only thing that matters.

  19. #76
    Twins Moderator MVP Riverbrian's Avatar
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    There is only one winner at the end of a year but I have hard time calling the other 29 teams failures. That's a harsh grading curve.

    I know that's a simplistic and un-nuanced view of what some are expressing.

    I just feel that a September with meaningful games that end in a big heartbreak is still a successful season in my mind.

    That 1 bad day that ends the season doesn't trump the other 161 days of having hope. To some it does. I just can't be that way. I'd have a hard time getting up in the morning.

    Now if you have a year with less then 30 days of hope. That's a bad year and it was hard getting up in the morning the past few years.
    A Skeleton walks into a bar and says... "Give me a beer... And a mop".

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  21. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joe A. Preusser View Post
    Yeah, I did overstate that a bit. The Yanks did develop a core of nice players early that decade. Subsequently they added a LOT of high (over?) priced FAs to extend their run of dominance. Similar to LA the last several years; if they want a player, they will spend enough to break the bank of every other team, then do it again the next year, and the next. That is what I perceive of shallow. The difference between earning a title and buying one.
    Nor am I a Twins apologist. There is no doubt they made plenty of mistakes over the last 20 years that contributed to some very poor teams.
    Everything you said is why ML Baseball is as compelling as life itself, why it's the world's greatest reality show literally played out on a daily basis for 7+ months of the year....full of a few Goliath's yes, but it also allows for a few David's to surface annually (and the David's are coming out on top more often these days!) and a lot of bean-counting teams that are just along for the ride (and the media and revenue-sharing paychecks); and the game's also replete with individual characters of varied virtue and skill that fall somewhere inbetween hero and villain- ie, guys without obvious stuff who somehow pitch effectively until they're 49, and guys with all the stuff in the world who go through their own mini-Shakespearean tragedy and are out of baseball before they hit their prime.

    In the case of the Twins, success in 2014 has to measured by a return to respectability, which besides the W-L record, would also partly be defined by no more articles and media reports from the punditocracy ridiculing the "Twins Way" as a metaphorical punching bag. Getting up off of the canvas of the last 3 years with a little self-respect shown by a few more of the characters that make up this team will go a long way in my book to making this season a success.
    Last edited by jokin; 02-11-2014 at 09:56 AM.

  22. #78
    Success this season is a combination of performance and optimism. The disappointments of the past seasons have rested largely on the failure of both. We saw prospects struggle mightily (Hicks, Arcia, Gibson, Parmelee, Dozier) early in their big league careers, and had almost none of them arrive and succeed to anything approaching the level we'd hoped.

    We hoped as well for bounce-back seasons from more veteran players (Morneau, Plouffe, Willingham) and that didn't happen. We hoped some pitchers would establish themselves as rotation mainstays (Diamond, Worley, Gibson) and that didn't happen, either.

    At this point, I would measure success as a larger dose of optimism and a smaller dose of increased performance. I think this team is well-positioned for both. If we don't win a tremendous number of games, I'd still consider the year a huge success if we started trotting out a late-season lineup that had Buxton, Rosario, Mauer, Arcia, Sano, Pinto, Dozier, Hicks, and a SS, and a rotation with Nolasco, Hughes, Pelfrey, Gibson and Meyer in it. At that point, you can see light at the end of the tunnel.

  23. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by jokin View Post
    Everything you said is why ML Baseball is as compelling as life itself, why it's the world's greatest reality show literally played out on a daily basis for 7+ months of the year....full of a few Goliath's yes, but it also allows for a few David's to surface annually (and the David's are coming out on top more often these days!) and a lot of bean-counting teams that are just along for the ride (and the media and revenue-sharing paychecks); and the game's also replete with individual characters of varied virtue and skill that fall somewhere inbetween hero and villain- ie, guys without obvious stuff who somehow pitch effectively until they're 49, and guys with all the stuff in the world who go through their own mini-Shakespearean tragedy and are out of baseball before they hit their prime.

    In the case of the Twins, success in 2014 has to measured by a return to respectability, which besides the W-L record, would also partly be defined by no more articles and media reports from the punditocracy ridiculing the "Twins Way" as a metaphorical punching bag. Getting up off of the canvas of the last 3 years with a little self-respect shown by a few more of the characters that make up this team will go a long way in my book to making this season a success.

    My first look at this thread, a lot to respond to.

    -First, I would expect a 6-7 win improvement, not hope. Expect. It seems like a reasonable expectation that Nolasco, Hughes, and Meyer will pitch 450 innings with a 4.25 ERA. That is a 50 run improvement over our starting ERA from last year, so that should get you close to 6-7 wins. If those three have a slightly higher ERA, you have a chance that Josh will bounce back, Hicks, Gibson, or Pelfrey outperforms his 5.19 ERA from last year. Any one of those should help close the gap to 6-7 wins.

    -Anyone who expects the playoffs in 2014 is just not realistic. I am guessing the number of teams that have put up a 25+ win improvement is very small. The one's that did most likely added to their lineup as well and did not rely on bounce back years (Hicks, Willingham) and young players (Sano).

    -Simply knowing whether or not a player is for real (Dozier, Hicks, Gibson, etc.) is not a success. You want to see more of these guys turn out than not, in order to chalk it up as a success.

    -This is clearly a 2015 and beyond operation, so 2014 will be a "success" in my eyes by seeing progress of the key guys (Sano, Buxton, and Meyer), as well as top prospects (Stewart, Polanco, Thorpe, and Rosario) in the minors, Hicks and Dozier sticking,. Correa, Willingham, and Pelfrey playing well and being flipped for a guy in A or AA would be a huge success.

    -Lastly, not every one of these things will happen. Guys will regress or get hurt. My dissapointment meter would go up the most if Sano, Buxton, or Meyer have a major injury or regress. Then Kohl. Then probably Dozier taking a step back. Then Hicks failing. Then the vets not playing well enough to be traded.
    Last edited by tobi0040; 02-11-2014 at 11:22 AM.

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  25. #80
    Quote Originally Posted by Riverbrian View Post
    My success is such a low bar to clear.

    I want to watch good baseball.

    I want clean cutoffs!!! I want amazing catches and throws!!! I want hard slides and the extra base. I want the hit and run executed and I want full focus and full effort during game 83 of the season.

    If I watch good baseball... Played with pride. The wins will come.
    Could not agree more. I want to enjoy watching a Twins game again. Too many times over the last three years the Twins have been unwatchable due to extremely poor fundamentals. I can live with losses if the game is played right and with passion. Winning is great but at least play the game right. Make it watchable again.

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