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Monday, May 24, 2021

The Twins? Sellers? Here’s why they could be

“We are a franchise that is going to strive to make decisions to help our team, either for today or for the future,” Twins general manager Thad Levine said. “Where we—like so many teams—try to stay disciplined is not being caught in that middle range, where you’re kind of doing neither and you’re missing opportunities.”

Levine recalled a lesson that he learned from Oakland’s executive vice president Billy Beane early in his career: During the six-month season, executives should use the first two months to assess their team, the next two months to make the necessary changes, then sit back for the final two months and see how it plays out.

The first two months of 2021 are almost over, leaving the Twins with some harsh realities to consider….

Should the Twins decide to look ahead to 2021, the obvious trade candidates would be Nelson Cruz, Andrelton Simmons, Michael Pineda, J.A. Happ, Alex Colomé, Hansel Robles and Matt Shoemaker, all of whom can become free agents this fall.

Cruz, Simmons, Happ, Colomé, Robles and Shoemaker all signed one-year deals with the Twins this past offseason.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: May 24, 2021 at 05:08 PM | 7 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: twins

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   1. Walt Davis Posted: May 24, 2021 at 05:39 PM (#6020607)
The why is obvious: 17-29. Whether Cruz is traded is probably up to Cruz, I'd imagine he'd like a shot at the title but I also assume he likes Minnesota or he wouldn't keep going back. Simmons can find a home obviously but if 1/$10 was the best he could do this offseason, it's hard to see him bringing much return. Pineda has been a very good pitcher since returning (200 IP now) so should be in pretty high demand. (I forget, did he violate one of the policies?) Happ meanwhile has been pretty bad -- I've written him off before but he is 38 now so this could be the end.

I think the interesting candidate is Maeda. He's having a tough year but has been a solid, unspectacular pitcher and is signed through 2023 for a mere $6.5 M. That's a solid asset. Then there's Sano. I'm not sure why he wasn't listed, he's FA at the end of the year too and has established himself as a good hitter (121 OPS+) although he gives back a good bit on defense. If they're thinking rebuild, Donaldson is the valuable piece you want to move.
   2. DL from MN Posted: May 25, 2021 at 09:18 AM (#6020723)
Sano has another year left on his contract but I agree that they should sell him. They have other hitters that can fill 1B.

I don't see any reason for the Twins to do a complete teardown and rebuild. Sell the impending free agents, adjust the roster to fix what isn't working and go for it again in 2022. I have seen suggestions to sell Buxton and Berrios but I think they should give them big contract extensions instead. I don't think I would sell Maeda, keep him around for 2022. They need starting pitching. Taylor Rogers is a piece that pretty much every contender would want and he's only under team control through 2022.
   3. Jobu is silent on the changeup Posted: May 25, 2021 at 02:23 PM (#6020751)
Should the Twins decide to look ahead to 2021, the obvious trade candidates would be Nelson Cruz, Andrelton Simmons, Michael Pineda, J.A. Happ, Alex Colomé, Hansel Robles and Matt Shoemaker, all of whom can become free agents this fall.
If they are looking ahead to 2021, I think we've identified the problem.
   4. Walt Davis Posted: May 25, 2021 at 05:51 PM (#6020780)
I don't see any reason for the Twins to do a complete teardown and rebuild.

I agree, I was just speculating if they decide to. And you're right on Sano, I'd missed the buyout ... means you might get more for him.
   5. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: May 26, 2021 at 07:55 AM (#6020884)
I have seen suggestions to sell Buxton and Berrios but I think they should give them big contract extensions instead.


The team has been trying to extend both for years now and they cannot arrive at a deal. Local speculation is they might get one, but doubts are high they get both. Two amazingly gifted players who for different reasons just never seem to have seasons equal to their promise - I can see why the Twins are reluctant to pay full freight for both.

You said should though, and ... maybe? Both are risks and old enough I don't want to pay for potential (well, if it were my money, it ain't so sure, spend away). I suspect Berrios is more likely to be with the team long-term, but that is a guess.
   6. DL from MN Posted: May 26, 2021 at 08:24 AM (#6020887)
They probably could trade Buxton now since Rob Refsnyder can apparently replace all of his contribution.
   7. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: May 26, 2021 at 08:38 AM (#6020888)
Buxton started intriguing, became frustrating, and now lives in a weird twilight status where he is both amazing and wonderful to watch and also fatalism inducing because there is always an injury lurking. I am glad he is on my team and I also wouldn't wish the Buxton experience on any other fan base.

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