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Thread: Article: Proving Grounds

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    The King In The North All-Star Nick Nelson's Avatar
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    Article: Proving Grounds


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    Senior Member All-Star Ultima Ratio's Avatar
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    If we can win 4 out of 3, we'll really be on to something special.

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    If you think about our SP problems, if Liriano and Diamond can continue this decent run of success and pull out wins for the Twins, Blackburn can somehow make it 6innings and limit the damage to 4 runs/9, we really dont need anyone else to step up and make a huge impact on the front lines. Is that really asking too much? Of course I am just talking the usual "what if" "what if"

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    Pixel Monkey MVP Brock Beauchamp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yoshii View Post
    If you think about our SP problems, if Liriano and Diamond can continue this decent run of success and pull out wins for the Twins, Blackburn can somehow make it 6innings and limit the damage to 4 runs/9, we really dont need anyone else to step up and make a huge impact on the front lines. Is that really asking too much? Of course I am just talking the usual "what if" "what if"
    The thing is that I don't think that's enough. 8.5 games is a lot of ground to make up and two starting pitchers probably isn't enough to do it, especially considering that the Twins offense isn't set up to carry a bad pitching staff. It's decent but not great, not enough to overcome 2-3 bad starts every five games.

    If the Twins magically acquired Zack Greinke, it'd be possible. Both the offense and bullpen is pretty good, enough to beat up on a pretty weak AL Central if the rotation is in order. But right now? Nah, I don't see it happening unless PJ Walters drinks a bunch of Gummy Juice and becomes Scott Diamond, Part II.

    And there's my 80s cartoon reference for the day.

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    Senior Member Triple-A
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    What is "humorous" is that with how well Liriano has pitched recently he is 1-2 over that time as the Twins have only scored 11 runs in his 5 outings. On the other hand Blackburn is 3-0 since his return from the DL while having an ERA of 6.00 over that span as the Twins have scored 25 runs in those 4 games.

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    Senior Member Big-Leaguer Mr. Ed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yoshii View Post
    If you think about our SP problems, if Liriano and Diamond can continue this decent run of success and pull out wins for the Twins, Blackburn can somehow make it 6innings and limit the damage to 4 runs/9, we really dont need anyone else to step up and make a huge impact on the front lines. Is that really asking too much? Of course I am just talking the usual "what if" "what if"
    Overly
    Optimistic

    Because believing that Blackburn can consistently minimize damage with a BAA over .300 is not a recipe for any positive consistency.

    Just like believing Liriano can stay consistently good. Not his trademark, likely never will be in a MN uniform.

    Duensing is an average-at-best starter. That's been proven out by his eventual regression as a starter. Has to start now, given the lack of help
    available.

    MN needs more front-line starting pitching. Like nearly every other team in MLB.

    TRyan has his work cut out trying to get that area improved.

  7. #7
    Senior Member All-Star Winston Smith's Avatar
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    If the Twins play .600 baseball they get to 83 wins. How many teams in baseball are playing .600 baseball? How many of those teams have starting pitching like the Twins?

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    Senior Member Triple-A
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    Hi Mr. Ed, I think the Duensing in the rotation part two is worth a try. He performed well the first time, didn't complain about the bullpen roll and he performed relatively well there. I'm rooting for him (we need a starter or three).

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    Senior Member Big-Leaguer Boom Boom's Avatar
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    The Twins went on a mini-run prior to the All-Star break last season and had themselves convinced they could compete. They could have cashed in on some outgoing veteran players at that point but didn't.

    I don't want a repeat of that this year. Whether the Twins run off a few games now or not, the meaningful part of their season is over.

  10. #10
    If you look at Blackburn, it's nice that you can get only 5 innings with 4 runs given up out of him. Liriano is going a bit longer and giving up less runs. Diamond is basically a 3-4 run starter and also has the ability to go 7-8 innings. So, if the Twins score 5+ runs, they have a chance to win when these three guy pitch.

    But the remaining two spots are a total mess. I disagree making Duensing a starter. He turns into...Anthony Swarzak. Both these guys are best served in the bullpen, with Swarzak on the cusp of staying a Twin, period. But no one else has stepped up as the long righty. Manship isn't there.Maybe DeVries will be the guy eventually.

    But the Twins need starters. Run the shuttle bus between Rochester and here. They have two roster spots still open. Give a shot to French. Give a shot to Deduno (or is he also disabled). Maybe look at Hermsen or Hirschfield. Start their service time.

    And why haven't they claimed Bowden, Hamburger or any of a number of other guys getting cut loose and given them a chance at pitching like they gave Thomas and Kamatsu and even Mastro in the outfield, or Burroughs at third. If you get them to work, you keep them. If they don't work...you send them off to be cl
    aimed by someone else or actually get to keep them for a tad more seasoning in the minors.

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    Owner All-Star John Bonnes's Avatar
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    A couple of weeks ago, I asked how close to .500 the Twins would need to be by the ASB to make them contenders. Then consensus seemed to be no more than a couple of games from .500. Even if the Twins go 8-3 over these last 11 games versus AL Central teams, they're still 8 games under .500.

    But it's not impossible. The one thing the Twins have for them is LOTS of games vs the AL Central. With that many games left, the arguments about what pace they need to play are meaningless. They just need to win a bunch of these series.

    The question about the quality of the team - especially the rotation - being high enough to do that is perfectly valid. I guess we start finding out tonight.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rosterman View Post
    If you look at Blackburn, it's nice that you can get only 5 innings with 4 runs given up out of him. Liriano is going a bit longer and giving up less runs. Diamond is basically a 3-4 run starter and also has the ability to go 7-8 innings. So, if the Twins score 5+ runs, they have a chance to win when these three guy pitch.

    But the remaining two spots are a total mess. I disagree making Duensing a starter. He turns into...Anthony Swarzak. Both these guys are best served in the bullpen, with Swarzak on the cusp of staying a Twin, period. But no one else has stepped up as the long righty. Manship isn't there.Maybe DeVries will be the guy eventually.

    But the Twins need starters. Run the shuttle bus between Rochester and here. They have two roster spots still open. Give a shot to French. Give a shot to Deduno (or is he also disabled). Maybe look at Hermsen or Hirschfield. Start their service time.

    And why haven't they claimed Bowden, Hamburger or any of a number of other guys getting cut loose and given them a chance at pitching like they gave Thomas and Kamatsu and even Mastro in the outfield, or Burroughs at third. If you get them to work, you keep them. If they don't work...you send them off to be cl
    aimed by someone else or actually get to keep them for a tad more seasoning in the minors.
    Pretty much all the names you mentioned are, at best, borderline MLB players. It's hard to create something out of nothing.

    They already went to the well and found one keeper in Diamond. They would be extremely luck to find another.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Ultima Ratio View Post
    If we can win 4 out of 3, we'll really be on to something special.
    Winning 4 out of 3 would be impressive, but probably impossible. Not because it's the Twins we're talking about: because winning more games than you play is mathmatically impossible.

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    Pixel Monkey MVP Brock Beauchamp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by woolhouse View Post
    Winning 4 out of 3 would be impressive, but probably impossible. Not because it's the Twins we're talking about: because winning more games than you play is mathmatically impossible.
    Methinks that was the joke.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cr9617 View Post
    Pretty much all the names you mentioned are, at best, borderline MLB players. It's hard to create something out of nothing.

    They already went to the well and found one keeper in Diamond. They would be extremely luck to find another.
    But look what happened with Marquis once he signed the Padres. A change of scenery sometimes is amazingly restorative. Regarding the Twins, if you're hungry and your only means of sustenance is a well, you have to keep sending down the bucket in hopes of finding a fish. The Twins should be looking to sign every pitcher in the waiver-wire well.

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    Pixel Monkey MVP Brock Beauchamp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jokin View Post
    But look what happened with Marquis once he signed the Padres. A change of scenery sometimes is amazingly restorative. Regarding the Twins, if you're hungry and your only means of sustenance is a well, you have to keep sending down the bucket in hopes of finding a fish. The Twins should be looking to sign every pitcher in the waiver-wire well.
    Jason Marquis has allowed 26 hits and 11 BB in 26 innings for the Padres, good for a WHIP of 1.405. He still isn't striking anyone out.

    His ERA is a mirage. He'll be right back to NL-level mediocrity in no time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rocketpig View Post
    Jason Marquis has allowed 26 hits and 11 BB in 26 innings for the Padres, good for a WHIP of 1.405. He still isn't striking anyone out.

    His ERA is a mirage. He'll be right back to NL-level mediocrity in no time.
    No one ever accused me of being a Marquis defender, I have no doubts about his impending regression to the mean. The point I'm making is you can't find another "Diamond" in the rough without searching every possible venue. They need SP arms for the long-term, but they also need SP arms for the short term. At this point, 3-4 mirages would look pretty good as short-term fixes.

  18. #18
    Pixel Monkey MVP Brock Beauchamp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jokin View Post
    No one ever accused me of being a Marquis defender, I have no doubts about his impending regression to the mean. The point I'm making is you can't find another "Diamond" in the rough without searching every possible venue. They need SP arms for the long-term, but they also need SP arms for the short term. At this point, 3-4 mirages would look pretty good as short-term fixes.
    I agree that it doesn't hurt to try but if the Twins are going to get performances out of anyone, it's going to be a guy like Walters, who can't seem to get anyone out in the majors but puts up somewhat impressive numbers in the minors.

    I'm a fan of experimentation but I can't advocate throwing everything at the wall and hoping something sticks.

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    It's still hopeless. Gardenhire and Ryan must go. Anyone spending money at Target field is only helping to prolong the problem.

  20. #20
    The King In The North All-Star Nick Nelson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rocketpig View Post
    Jason Marquis has allowed 26 hits and 11 BB in 26 innings for the Padres, good for a WHIP of 1.405. He still isn't striking anyone out.

    His ERA is a mirage. He'll be right back to NL-level mediocrity in no time.
    If your point is that he's likely to regress, I agree. The notion that he hasn't pitched legitimately well for the Padres is untrue, though. He is, in fact, striking people out Ė he's averaging a K per inning with SD. In his second-to-last start against the Rangers, he pitched seven innings of two-run ball with 10 strikeouts. Against the Rangers!

    I'm sure his early run with the Padres is unsustainable, but there's no way he was even capable of this kind of production the way he was throwing here. Pretty remarkable turnaround.

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