Friday, July 20, 2007
What to Do?
Sometimes I get some e-mails and instead of replying, I think it is best just to put it out there and see what people think. This is one of those cases. I got the below e-mail from RaiderMike with his thoughts on what the Twins should be doing at this point. I think he puts together a solid argument for his case. I agree with parts of it, but not all. And, in the end, Mike and I would love to hear what you think, so please leave your comments below. Thank you!
Hey Seth,I know you've already covered the Torii Hunter debate in great detail, but I just wanted to chime in. The Twins have consistently passed on breaking the bank for deadline rentals. While it frustrates many fans, I believe that this is the reason why they have been successful for the better part of the past 5 years. While Hunter's situation is different (as it would make us worse rather than simply not improving), I think it's the right thing to do.I'm the biggest Torii supporter in the world. I started going to Rock Cat games in 1998 when Torii, Jones, Guzman, and Mienkiewicz were all there so it would sort of feel like the end of an era for me to see him go. However, there are multiple reasons for the club to make this decision.1) It's a VERY unique situation, but the All-Star Gold Glove CF is actually the most expendable when you have to worry about keeping the reigning A. L. MVP and the best pitcher in the world.2) Although it sends a pretty negative message to the rest of the team, the addition of a guy like Jacoby Ellsbury could be HUGE. Other than him, the only realistic candidate to play CF next year would be Kenny Lofton. Plus, the signing of Lofton would only delay the problem for a year. Maybe we'd have a solution in Span by that time, but then again we're talking about a team that hasn't been able to find a DH in years!!!!!People will make the argument that the Twins should keep Hunter for the rest of his contract and just let him walk because we have a legitimate shot at winning the World Series. This argument is very fair. With the added off days in the playoff schedule, we'd be able to pitch Johan even more than they already do in the postseason. Plus, we'd get draft pick compensation for losing Hunter as a free agent. My response is that there is a very decent chance that the Twins won't even make the playoffs WITH Torii Hunter, and if that happens, we'll all wish we had that extra top-notch prospect that we would have gotten in return for him at the deadline. As for the draft pick, there's a very realistic chance we end up drafting a player that never makes it past New Britain. Sure, even the biggest of prospects don't pan out sometimes, but this team needs a MAJOR LEAGUE READY hitting prospect.Here are the changes I'd make to the Twins lineup:1) Play Kubel everyday. He had a 10th of Jason Tyner's career RBI in ONE GAME this year!!! If the team can justify playing Punto everyday, then how do they justify sitting Kubel and his potential?2) Trade Hunter for Ellsbury or another Major League ready hitting prospect. There are a few variables here. The Sox may not even be interested and we could probably get another mid-level prospect thrown in.3) Consider trading Castillo if the price is right. I think Casilla could be a capable replacement, and even if he can't, he'll be here next year anyway. Plus, I believe Terry Ryan's greatest strength is trading spare parts for low level prospects like.....well.....Casilla.4) Trade Rincon. Juan is another favorite of mine from back in his New Britain days, but we simply don't need him anymore and I actually believe we can get more than many people think for him.5) Here is where I'm going to lose you. Mike Restovich can probably be had for next to nothing. DH him against LHP's and Jones against RHP's. I realize this seems crazy, but this would allow us to take Tyner off the roster.6) Trade Carlos Silva for a hitting prospect. I'll bet Silva has value. He has his shortcomings, but he makes next to nothing money-wise. Plus, you should never say you don't need a starting pitcher, but....uh....we don't need him anymore.7) Play Cirillo as the starter at third for August. It allows Punto to be a utility player and also replaces the loss of Tyner's speed off the bench. If it doesn't work out, call up Buscher in September. If that doesn't work out......well who cares?....Punto is batting .209 with no power. It would be hard to downgrade from that.Our lineup would look like this:2B Casilla/CF EllsburySS BartlettC MauerRF Cuddyer1B MorneauLF KubelDH Jones/ Resto3B CirilloCF Ellsbury/2B CasillaAt the end of the year, we'd probably still need a DH, but you never know. We would still need a 3B as well, but at some point they are going to have to trade one of their starters, even if they deal Silva at the deadline. It's good to have depth, but it isn't good to have top prospects wasting their careers away in AAA. Soon they are going to be out of options. They are going to have to trade either Baker, Bonser or Perkins at some point. I like them all, but one of them could be used to address 3rd base in the offseason. I believe Boof and Perkins have 1 option each, but Baker is out at the end of the season so there won't be any more luxury of just sending him down if he falters.Sorry for the long email, but its difficult to find someone to talk Twins baseball with out here in Connecticut. I realize this is probably way too long for you to have time to respond too, but thanks for reading. Keep up the great work. You do an extraordinary job with your blog.-RaiderMike
Any thoughts? Let me know what you think. Send me an e-mail, or let's talk about it in the Comments below.|
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