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Thread: Was Terry Ryan Right About Correia?

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    Was Terry Ryan Right About Correia?

    My apologies if a thread like this was already discussed in the past. It was on my mind recently. Wanted to cover it.

    In no way am I a decent baseball analyst, but I do hope to create a piece people will enjoy reading just for fun.

    Have we ever apologized to TR about Kevin Correia? I remember he took a beating last winter for giving him a two year deal. I even remember that I did a post on who they should sign and spoke out against Correia at the least attractive FA to sign. Low and behold, they signed him.

    While 2013 was terrible overall, Correia was well ... okay for his standards. He wasn't great. He wasn't terrible. He came as advertised and seemed to survive from changing leagues and pitching for a terrible team. All in all, he appears to have been the most complete pitcher for us last year.

    His 2013 stats (nothing crazy here ... just very basic stats)
    IP W-L SV ERA Ks BB
    185.1 9-13 4.18 101 45

    We got him for 2 years and 9 million. I wanted to compare his basic stats to what other FA pitchers did last year.

    Below are the top names from last year and what they did ... I have included in my opinion if we were better off with Corriea or should have been better off with the other pitcher.

    1. Zack Greinke
    IP W-L SV ERA Ks BB
    177.2 15-4 2.63 148 46

    Analysis: Sure ... Greinke would be better, but we wouldn't have met his asking price last year or this year. He was hurt for a while, but Correia did log more innings overall. Even if we take Corriea away and put Greinke in there, it doesn't change our season at all. Hard to compare. Still though: Greinke better.

    2. Kyle Lohse
    IP W-L SV ERA Ks BB
    198.2 11-10 3.35 125 36

    Yeah, Lohse was better, but I'd argue we made out a bit better with Correia. Lohse pitched a few more innings and struck more people out whole allowing less walks. His ERA also looks better. However, the Brewers had to sign him to a bigger contract AND give up a pick (I think their first was not protected) to acquire him. The differences are not that great to say Lohse was the better player. With the pick involved and longer contract, I'd take Correia. Twins have advantage here: Correia better.

    3. Edwin Jackson
    IP W-L SV ERA Ks BB
    175.1 8-18 4.98 135 59

    Here is someone who was much more coveted than Correia and did worse! Correia signed a more team friendly contract. More wins, less losses, lower ERA, more innings pitched, and less walks. Jackson only beats Correia on K's. Plus this is an AL vs. NL pitcher! Yes, the Cubs were bad, but Correia wins here. TR with a big I told you so on this one: Correia better.

    4. Hiroki Kuroda
    IP W-L SV ERA Ks BB
    201.1 11-13 3.31 150 43

    Pretty obvious Kuroda was better. Beats Correia across the board. However, hard to sign him when he'd never have played here. Still want to fairly pit Correia against what was available. : Kuroda better

    5. Brandon McCarthy
    IP W-L SV ERA Ks BB
    135.0 5-11 4.53 76 21

    I didn't follow the D-Backs, but I take it he was hurt during the season. Still though, Correia beats him out. This is also comparing an AL to NL pitcher again and Correia still wins. I know many were on the Twins for not signing this guy. Another TR win. : Correia better.

    6. Anibal Sanchez
    IP W-L SV ERA Ks BB
    182.0 14-8 2.57 202 54

    He wasn't going to sign here from what it appeared last year. Sort of not fair to compare, but clearly he was the much better pitcher. : Sanchez better.

    7. Ryan Dempster
    IP W-L SV ERA Ks BB
    171.1 8-9 4.57 157 79

    This is a tough one to compare. I think he wouldn't have signed here either, but who knows with Nolasco agreeing to come here this offseason. Correia has a bit lower ERA and more innings pitched as well as much lower walks. Dempster kills him in K's though. I could honestly see it swinging either way, but I'm going to go Correia here because in our situation, we'd of been the same with Dempster or Correia. TR got better bang for his buck. : Correia better.

  2. #2
    8. Shaun Marcum
    IP W-L SV ERA Ks BB
    78.1 1-10 5.29 60 21

    To be fair, he was an injury risk before he even signed with the Mets last year. However, I know we were pushing for the Twins to ink him (I remember being pro-Marcum). Clearly Correia was much better. : Correia better.

    9. Dan Haren
    IP W-L SV ERA Ks BB
    169.2 10-14 1 4.67 151 31

    Correia pitched more innings and had a lower ERA, but Haren has more K's and less walks in around the same sample size. Yes Haren was NL, but I do feel he had more talent. He was on a one year deal, which I think edges him out. It's very close, but I'll go Haren just barely. : Haren better.

    10. Jeff Francis
    IP W-L SV ERA Ks BB
    70.1 3-5 6.27 63 24

    I think in more innings, he'd of easily handled Correia in K's. However, he had a horrible season and would have made us feel even worse for having him here vs. Correia. Correia wins easily. : Correia better.

    11. Jeremy Guthrie
    IP W-L SV ERA Ks BB
    211.2 15-12 4.04 111 59

    Royals paid big to retain him. Twins wanted him. He did log more innings and looks to have been more successful. Had Correia reached his innings, it appears he would have logged more K's. Correia allowed less walks, but that total would have more close too had Correia matched the IP. ERA was close. I did give Correia the nod over Lohse due to contract and draft pick compensation. No draft pick here, but I do feel Guthrie did have the better year overall and is a better SP. It's close again and some of my logic could say Correia is better with less cost/years on the deal, but I do feel Guthrie would have been better, but not by much. : Guthrie better.

    12: Joe Blanton

    IP W-L SV ERA Ks BB
    132.2 2-14 6.04 108 34

    We were close to this guy! I remember reading or hearing recently (I think on Gleeman and the Geek??) that had we committed one more year, he'd of come here. Sure glad that didn't happen! Only thing Blanton takes Correia on is K's. Otherwise, Correia dominated. : Correia better.

    13. Scott Feldman
    IP W-L SV ERA Ks BB
    181.2 12-12 3.86 132 56

    Feldman did better. He was consistent in both the NL and AL last year. He went for a one year deal vs. the extra year Correia got. I guess if anything, his stats don't blow Correia away, which I like. He had more K's and a less ERA, but allowed more walks. At least Correia made it somewhat of a battle. Still though, Feldman wins. : Feldman better.

    14. Freddy Garcia
    IP W-L SV ERA Ks BB
    80.1 4-7 4.37 46 17

    Another one we wanted. He got a one year deal and looks like he'd of edged Correia in K's, but we still had the better edge here easily. : Correia better.

    15. Scott Baker
    IP W-L SV ERA Ks BB
    15.0 0-0 3.60 6 4

    One of our own. Barely pitched. Even Pelfrey was a better SP than him! Must hurt Baker the pitchers we replaced him with even did better even though we were terrible. The team he chose was terrible. : Correia better.

    16. John Lannan
    IP W-L SV ERA Ks BB
    74.1 3-6 5.33 38 27

    Just tossing him in here because we had wanted him too and wondered why TR didn't go after him. Correia wins here as well. : Correia better

    Overall:
    Compared to 16 FA pitchers last year (I used the CBS sports article http://www.cbssports.com/mlb/eye-on-...rting-pitchers for reference), Correia did better than 10 of them IMO. That's pretty dang decent.

    While I'd rather have Correia last year on a one year deal, having him for 2 might help us this year. He's now essentially on a one year deal at 5.5 million. Consider what Feldman will sign for. I take it that he'll easily get multiple years and much more than Correia his second time around FA. I honestly think after the year Correia put together for us last year in a change from NL to AL, he'd be able to at least gain a one year contract (if not two) for more than we're paying him.

    Kevin Correia is not perfect and far from the best, but last season was a wash. We now move into 2014 with expecting more from Nolasco and Hughes than Correia. Correia will not be in the spotlight as much as he was last year (he essentially was our big acquisition last year) and we seem to know what to expect. If he duplicates in 2014 what he did in 2013, I consider this contract a major win for the Twins and TR.

    We do rip the Twins for many years of bargain bin deals, but this one actually turned out okay. Of course the team backed itself into such a corner than they HAD to spend (and I'm fully on board with the Nolasco and Hughes deals even though the chances of either of them being worth it won't happen ... market rate for SP's).

    If anything, Correia is a small victory on a terrible 2013 and hope for 2014 that around 180 to 200 innings are spoken for at an ok performance for less money than what someone else of that talent level might command (as long as there is no injury).

    I'd love for someone much more advanced than me to take the Correia discussion deeper. Include advanced stats for the compared pitchers and also go deeper into contract situations. I take it I'm barely scratching the surface here. IMO, it's fascinating to dissect and the winter is the time to do this kind of stuff! I take no offense to any disagreements, criticisms, or different opinions on what I have presented. I hope to read much greater analysis than what I've provided.

    Thanks for reading! TR, I'm sorry for being so upset at you for Correia. At least on this one, you won (now keep fixing all the other errors, lol!)!

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  4. #3
    Senior Member Double-A
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    You might have to wait a long time to get the posters on this board to admit they were wrong about Correia. Not to mention TR. And there were a lot of complainers. Holy Cow did people bitch last year about that signing. "The second year! It kills us. One year Ok, but not two. At that price. 5 Mil!"

    But, the jury is still out. Correia has to perform this year. But, to get innings at that cost, it looks pretty good right now.

    Just goes to show, the Gleemans, the Bonnes, the guys who know it all, "My God, they have statistics to show us how stupid" -- even they eat crow once in awhile. Although they do it quietly, and with no one watching. Bon appetit, amigos...

  5. #4
    Senior Member Big-Leaguer Brad Swanson's Avatar
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    I'll fully admit I was one who did not approve of this move. I thought the second year was a mistake and I thought Correia would perform as he had for the previous few seasons. Clearly, Ryan and the Front Office saw more and they were right. I'm happy they were right. I'll stand by my analysis, but I was definitely wrong last year and I hope I will be in 2014 too.
    Works on contingency? No, money down!
    Kevin Slowey was Framed!

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    Senior Member Big-Leaguer Oldgoat_MN's Avatar
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    Well I was wrong.

    I still don't think that Correia is an elite pitcher, but he held up pretty well for a team that didn't give any of their pitchers very much support. Correia was at least as good as hit stats said he'd be.

    And as far as TR, he sure passed on a lot of FA pitchers who had bad years (which seemed to be the majority of them).

    Let's hope Nolasco & Hughes have a great experience in Minnesota.
    I'm on a whiskey diet. I've lost 3 days already.

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  9. #6
    Senior Member All-Star cmathewson's Avatar
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    I was one who defended TR. I wanted TR to do more, though. I just didn't see anybody besides Sanchez who seemed worth it, and I was on the fence on Sanchez because of the length of the contract and the injury risk.

    But this signing looked like a good deal to me by itself. At best Correia is a fourth starer and he got fourth starter money. He performed like a fourth starter on a decent team. Lots of guys on the market performed better at substantially higher cost. Lots of guys performed worse at higher cost. Few performed better at or below Correia's cost. I expect him to be about the same this year. He's been pretty consistent throughout his career. The difference is, this year he should really be the fourth starter, rather than the opening day starter like he was last year. That's huge.
    "If you'da been thinkin' you wouldn't 'a thought that.."

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  11. #7
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    For some reason Correia outperformed peripherals the previous two seasons.

    Part of it is the skill of holding runners on base. He also pitches as well or better with runners on base. Is it a skill or luck? The FIP variants side with luck. Maybe it is. Maybe it is the skill of pitching from the stretch. Maybe his ability to work quickly keeps the defense sharp.

    Correia is certainly worthy of a spot on a major league staff.

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    Senior Member Triple-A
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    I dunno, is TR going to apologize to us for losing 96 games 2 years in a row?

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    Banned Big-Leaguer
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    Quote Originally Posted by drivlikejehu View Post
    I dunno, is TR going to apologize to us for losing 96 games 2 years in a row?
    Would you be satisfied if he gave the 4th and 5th draft picks back?

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    Quote Originally Posted by howieramone View Post
    Would you be satisfied if he gave the 4th and 5th draft picks back?
    Wait, the GM's job is to tank so he can pick up high draft picks?

    So, signing Correia was actually a bad move because the Twins should have aimed for even more losses?

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    I was wrong, I admit it. I hated this deal when it happened. Correia was consistenly solid last year and you could count on him for 6 IP and 3 ER most games last year. Nice write up BTW.

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    Twins News Team All-Star TheLeviathan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by howieramone View Post
    Would you be satisfied if he gave the 4th and 5th draft picks back?
    So you're citing having the 5th pick as an accomplishment?

    Hell, 25 of us posters could have accomplished more than that if given some uniforms. We'd make sure it was the first!

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    Head Moderator MVP glunn's Avatar
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    Moderator note: please stop the bickering.

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    3 things
    1 He was the best pitcher on the worst staff.
    2 He had a track of pitching poorly.
    3 Most of the complaints was not the signing but giving him a second year. So if he repeats his performance and has another solid year than most of the critics will have been wrong.

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  25. #15
    I was one that did not think much of signing last year because I thought we needed much more than him to repair our pitching staff. In that regard I was right but Correia did better and did fill roll in last years pitching staff. If we would have had additional signings like this year I would not have been so upset. I think last year sticker shock cost the twins from signing additional pitching. The second year of correia contract was I believe reaction to the sticker shock and was way of locking up pitcher to eat 180 innings a year. I think Twins also trying to sign Pelfry again is mold of last year The Twins want to sign another pitcher lock up another 150 innings for the coming year and next year at reasonable cost and they believe that Pelfry is going to pitch more like he was when finishing the season. The sports reporters just hated way pelfry pitched because of his slow pace but haven't looked at how he was improving as season progressed.
    Terry Ryan is good at evaluating talent but is more conservative on what he's willing to pay for talent. Ryan and staff did good job with Correia getting what they expected better than we expected. Picking Free agents is just like drafting players except risk is higher because of the committed contract.

  26. #16
    Twins Moderator All-Star diehardtwinsfan's Avatar
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    I'm not sure you compare Corriea to a guy like Lohse and say that Corriea was better. Not sure how that works. I get the contract thing, but you have to let the contracts play out before you can make that judgement.

    That said, I didn't like the KC signing. Like others, I wanted Sanchez, and we certainly could have afforded it. The problem as I see it was that Ryan was clearly looking at 2013 as a rebuilding year. From that perspective, it was the right move.

  27. #17
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    I didn't like the signing because it felt like TR was giving up 2 season back to back with this signing. I expected a 4.5-5.0 ERA in close to 180 innings. So Corriea was better than expected but not that much better. The Problem I had was we had the money and need to go after better pitchers and didn't. That was depressing. With the past history there was no hope for the Twins to pull off the type of signings that they just did last week which was what was needed last year. And we new Corriea was going to be the best pitcher we got and that made us mad. Thats why people quit going to games too this year. So a lot of frustration for the Twins unwillingness to go after starting pitchers boiled up and was taken out on Corriea. So the real question is did anyone apologize to Corriea for us taking our frustrations out on him when he signed here?
    Last edited by Brandon; 12-02-2013 at 07:12 AM.

  28. #18
    Senior Member All-Star IdahoPilgrim's Avatar
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    I remember this topic being discussed late in the season. The general consensus (which not everyone agreed with, of course) was that TR had done a better job in the FA pitching market than most thought he had during the previous off-season, in the sense that many of the names people were hoping the Twins would sign ended up having poor seasons and Correia did end up having a better season than anticipated.

    That said there were still many who were frustrated with the general approach - shying away from top-end pitchers and concentrating on journeymen. He executed his plan well, but many still disagreed with the plan.

  29. #19
    Owner All-Star John Bonnes's Avatar
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    In his first year of this deal, Correia was one of the better free agent pitchers signed, and one of the best free agent pitching bargains. No doubt.

    So he's 50% of the way there. It might be that to sign Correia, the Twins needed to give him a 2nd year. I have trouble believing that, but it might be true. So maybe this upcoming year will further prove the organization's trust in Correia, or it might be the cost of the first year.

    But so far, Ryan and the Twins were right and we were wrong. That doesn't excuse last year's fairly miserable performance in the free agent market (and the resulting struggles of the starting rotation) but he got this one right.

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  31. #20
    Owner All-Star John Bonnes's Avatar
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    BTW, In case you're wondering, I changed the title of the thread to facilitate discussion.

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