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AmarilloRed
11-08-2007, 12:15 PM
Twins seem willing to part with pitching

The team has plenty of good, young arms, so teams such as the Padres and Devil Rays might deal talented hitters.

By Joe Christensen, Star Tribune

Last update: November 07, 2007 11:43 PM


ORLANDO - The San Diego Padres are one of several teams that have expressed interest in the Twins' young starting pitchers this week at the general managers meetings.

The teams had exploratory trade talks Wednesday, and indications were they didn't get very far after the Twins asked for Chase Headley, a switch-hitting third baseman who recently was named Texas League Player of the Year.

The Twins might not land Headley, but the example illustrates just how lofty the team's sights are as it looks to bolster the offense.

Internally, the Twins have targeted Tampa Bay's Delmon Young and B.J. Upton, along with the New York Mets' Carlos Gomez -- all of whom rank among the top young players in baseball.

"I don't think it's any secret we want to build up our offense," Twins General Manager Bill Smith said.

Of course, striving to acquire the top young talent in baseball is one thing. Actually getting it is another.

How do the Twins think they can pull this off?

By shifting their philosophy of protecting their young pitching prospects at all costs.

The Twins protected Matt Garza in 2006, for example, when the Washington Nationals wanted him in a package for Alfonso Soriano.

Now, there are strong indications the Twins would be willing to move Garza for a top young hitter. Other teams are asking about Scott Baker and Kevin Slowey as well.

The Twins have shifted their philosophy because they have no major league-ready position players in their farm system. Smith noted how in recent years, the system has produced Joe Mauer, Justin Morneau and Michael Cuddyer.

"We really haven't gone out to get hitters because we had hitters coming," he said. "But now we have holes in our offense, and we need to do whatever we can to try to fill those holes."

The Twins are looking for a third baseman and a designated hitter, and if Torii Hunter leaves via free agency, they'll need a new center fielder, too.

Hunter's agent, Larry Reynolds, spent two days in Orlando without meeting with the Twins.

They offered Hunter a three-year, $45 million contract in late August, and neither side seems eager to renegotiate until after other teams can make formal offers on Nov. 13.

The Twins' talks with free agent pitcher Carlos Silva also have stalled. There were indications Wednesday that the team offered Silva a three-year contract worth less than $20 million.

As one of the top pitchers in a weak free-agent class, Silva could command a four-year, $40 million deal on the open market, some baseball officials have said.

Like Hunter, Silva has not given the Twins a counteroffer.

"Are we frustrated?" Smith said. "We're not angry about it. We'd love to be able to sign both guys, but they've earned the right to [test free agency]."

Re-signing Silva might not be a priority if the Twins viewed the rest of their pitchers as untouchables.

But if they trade Garza, Baker and/or Slowey to obtain the hitters they want, keeping Silva would make even more sense.

"We have good young pitchers that other teams covet," Smith said. "I think there are a lot of teams that would like to have the stable of young arms that the Twins have."

The Devil Rays are among those searching, and they have been spotted meeting with the Twins in Orlando.

Upton (24 home runs, 82 RBI, .300 batting average last year) remains a Tampa Bay favorite, but Young (13 HR, 93 RBI, .293) had a well-publicized blowup with manager Joe Maddon in late September.

"We're not good enough ... to say that anyone is untouchable," said Andrew Friedman, the Devil Rays executive vice president of baseball operations. "Obviously, there are players that we're much less likely to talk about and it would be much harder for us to deal. That being said, we have to listen to anything and everything."

The Twins hope they have some ideas teams want to hear.

Joe Christensen jchristensen@startribune.com

I think the Reds should look into this. See if Hamilton and an additional hitter will work for Garza, or possibly even Bruce for Garza. The also seem open to trading some of their other pitchers, so let's see how well Krivsky's past Minnesota connections will help him in getting some starting pitching from Minnesota.

Bip Roberts
11-08-2007, 12:39 PM
Id be open to pretty much trading anyone for Garza. He is a stud.

stevekun
11-08-2007, 01:15 PM
Garza would be a great fit here

ChatterRed
11-08-2007, 03:01 PM
Hmmm. Garza turns 24 this month. He posted a 3.69 era, giving up 96 hits in 83 innings and walking 32 batters, striking out 67, for a WHIP of 1.54. He has two seasons in the majors.

He started 16 games last season. Batters batted .294 against him. He gave up 8 HR's.
His record was 5-7. In fact, he's 8-13 in two seasons.

Hmmmm.

*BaseClogger*
11-08-2007, 03:10 PM
Not sold on Matthew Garza...

mlbfan30
11-08-2007, 03:42 PM
One thing to note is that his BABIP was .345 last year. However in the minors is was .350 this year. And last year it was .350 in MLB. It's hard to tell whether it's him being hittable, or him being unlucky. His FB rate has been 38-40 % which isn't very good, but his GB/FB probably around 1.1. His line drive rate last year was low 15%, which along with his BABIP being so high, makes me think he is hittable. In the minors in 2006, his BABIP was low (.250). Given all this though, its hard to judge him since he hasn't been around for a long time. However he definitely would be a quality starter, and a #5 at the very very worst with potential to be a #2 at the very best. He most likely should be a #3 on an avg staff.
Hamilton is worth it for him, easily. Votto probably would be close, but I'd rather not give up Votto, definitely not both. Hamilton and Hattyburg, along with a mid-level prospect, like Turner/Valaika/Lecure or Fisher is probably fair.

Rotation of
Harang
BA
Garza
Bailey
Maloney/Cueto

seems set for many many years, that has a chance to be VERY good even if 2 of the 3 Bailey/Garza/Cueto live up the the hype. The Outfield will have Bruce/Dunn/Griffey , with Dunn being locked up longterm on a 4-5 year deal.

I(heart)Freel
11-08-2007, 03:57 PM
The Twins are looking for a third baseman and a designated hitter, and if Torii Hunter leaves via free agency, they'll need a new center fielder, too.



Seems to me the package starts with Edwin.

As I mentioned in the Ian Kennedy thread, I like Edwin fine. But I would trade him for a young starter in a Minnesota minute.

mlbfan30
11-08-2007, 04:06 PM
EE and Hamilton for Garza could also be acceptable. We can just get Keppenger to play 3B and hope last year wasn't a fluke. Another option is signing Arod, but the owner is too greedy. Carl Lindner 2.0

DTCromer
11-08-2007, 06:49 PM
This Garza thing smells like Brandon Claussen: Part Deux.

*BaseClogger*
11-08-2007, 07:10 PM
One thing to note is that his BABIP was .345 last year. However in the minors is was .350 this year. And last year it was .350 in MLB. It's hard to tell whether it's him being hittable, or him being unlucky. His FB rate has been 38-40 % which isn't very good, but his GB/FB probably around 1.1. His line drive rate last year was low 15%, which along with his BABIP being so high, makes me think he is hittable. In the minors in 2006, his BABIP was low (.250). Given all this though, its hard to judge him since he hasn't been around for a long time. However he definitely would be a quality starter, and a #5 at the very very worst with potential to be a #2 at the very best. He most likely should be a #3 on an avg staff.
Hamilton is worth it for him, easily. Votto probably would be close, but I'd rather not give up Votto, definitely not both. Hamilton and Hattyburg, along with a mid-level prospect, like Turner/Valaika/Lecure or Fisher is probably fair.

Rotation of
Harang
BA
Garza
Bailey
Maloney/Cueto

seems set for many many years, that has a chance to be VERY good even if 2 of the 3 Bailey/Garza/Cueto live up the the hype. The Outfield will have Bruce/Dunn/Griffey , with Dunn being locked up longterm on a 4-5 year deal.

Did I miss something where we extended Dunn?


This Garza thing smells like Brandon Claussen: Part Deux.

I'm not a Matthew Garza fan, but we have to be honest here... he has better stuff than Claussen right? I still don't understand why Claussen was a top prospect... was he good at anything other than giving up home runs?

Jay Bruce
11-08-2007, 07:40 PM
I'm not a Matthew Garza fan, but we have to be honest here... he has better stuff than Claussen right? I still don't understand why Claussen was a top prospect... was he good at anything other than giving up home runs?

Before be had Tommy John surgery in 2002, Claussen was a very good prospect. He led the minor leagues in strikeouts in 2001, with 220 in 187 innings as a 22 year old between A+ and AA. He wasn't really the same afterwards, although he did have a decieving 2.75 ERA in AAA at the time of the trade.

mlbfan30
11-08-2007, 10:50 PM
That was a hypothetical... if they trade away Hamilton they should need to sign Dunn longterm. If Hamilton stays then depending on how he does next year determines whether or not Dunn should be signed

hippie07
11-08-2007, 11:34 PM
I'm all for improving our pitching, but if we have to lose Hamilton - I'd prefer for us to package him w/ some others and get a "sure thing" in return. Garza could be the real thing, but I'd rather go after someone in whom we don't have to take that risk. I'm in the camp that feels that Hamilton has a lot of trade value (I know there's dispute about that) but I'd hate to accept less for one of our good trade chips when we have the capability of packaging some guys and landing a "big fish." Maybe if we can't succeed on that front, we could go after lesser options like Garza.

*BaseClogger*
11-08-2007, 11:53 PM
Before be had Tommy John surgery in 2002, Claussen was a very good prospect. He led the minor leagues in strikeouts in 2001, with 220 in 187 innings as a 22 year old between A+ and AA. He wasn't really the same afterwards, although he did have a decieving 2.75 ERA in AAA at the time of the trade.

But why was he still a top prospect when we traded for him?

Jay Bruce
11-09-2007, 12:08 AM
Thanks to his 2.75 ERA in Triple A, he was "major league ready", and looked like he was going to come all the way back. His ERA was decieving, because his K/9 was only 5.11. However, his BB/9 was only 2.36, and he only gave up 0.52 HR/9 at the time of the trade, so it looked like his command had come all of the way back. He actually came back to pitch in 2003 only a year after having the surgery. Since it usually takes about two years to completely come back, it would have been fair to expect that over time, his stuff could improve. Unfortunately, it never did.

bounty37h
11-09-2007, 01:04 PM
EE and Hamilton for Garza could also be acceptable. We can just get Keppenger to play 3B and hope last year wasn't a fluke. Another option is signing Arod, but the owner is too greedy. Carl Lindner 2.0

MLBFan, are you sure your a baseball fan? Reds fan? You want the Reds to sign ARod, and call owners too greedy to not do it? Maybe too smart?

*BaseClogger*
11-09-2007, 01:20 PM
Thanks to his 2.75 ERA in Triple A, he was "major league ready", and looked like he was going to come all the way back. His ERA was decieving, because his K/9 was only 5.11. However, his BB/9 was only 2.36, and he only gave up 0.52 HR/9 at the time of the trade, so it looked like his command had come all of the way back. He actually came back to pitch in 2003 only a year after having the surgery. Since it usually takes about two years to completely come back, it would have been fair to expect that over time, his stuff could improve. Unfortunately, it never did.

thank you. That anwsered my question.

mlbfan30
11-09-2007, 03:19 PM
MLBFan, are you sure your a baseball fan? Reds fan? You want the Reds to sign ARod, and call owners too greedy to not do it? Maybe too smart?

Don't take the second part of that comment seriously... on some things i am very serious, others just wishful thinking.
Although I see no problem in Arod opting out and trying to get a new contract. Players enter free agency all the time and don't sign with their former clubs because they want more money or more years. Why does Arod have a higher standard? Based on the market place he is worth 30M a year.... that's fair value for what he provides. Also salaries increase in baseball 10% every year so 30M in 10 years would be a lot less than now. Owners make a lot more money than players, and to say that owners should pay less suggests you would rather have owners make even more money, and the workers less money.
I really believe the Red are closer to the postseason than others. If they sign Arod, that gives 1 Automatic position player that is guaranteed to produce. We would have Bruce/Votto/Phillips/Hamilton and maybe Dunn signed longterm. That's a very strong core of players for relatively cheap. They would probably hold onto 2 longterm and flip the others for prospects.
For pitchers they have Harang/Arroyo for 4 more years, and also have Bailey/Cueto just waiting to emerge as very solid, if not great SP. The Reds also have a strong nucleus of RP in the minors that would help.
The reason why the Reds SHOULD afford a guy like Arod is because of how efficient the Reds COULD be in the future. Signing/trading for players who are old (Stanton), (Hatty),(Coniene), or players who are not very good, and cost a lot (Milton),(Silva),(Gonzo),(Freel)... is not the way to win.
We can win by using the farm system, but also getting proven stars even if it costs more than you'd like.

ChatterRed
11-10-2007, 12:45 AM
This Garza thing smells like Brandon Claussen: Part Deux.


Amen

Vada Pinson Fan
11-10-2007, 11:57 PM
Id be open to pretty much trading anyone for Garza. He is a stud.

I have to agree with ChatterRed who wrote "Hmmm. Garza turns 24 this month. He posted a 3.69 era, giving up 96 hits in 83 innings and walking 32 batters, striking out 67, for a WHIP of 1.54. He has two seasons in the majors.

He started 16 games last season. Batters batted .294 against him. He gave up 8 HR's.
His record was 5-7. In fact, he's 8-13 in two seasons.

Hmmmm."

Offering a Minor League Player of the Year (something the Reds have Not groomed on their own; previously) for Garza with a whip of 1.54 isn't a pitcher I'm hoping the Reds acquire especially at the cost of Jay Bruce. "Minor League Player of the Year." Let that sink in Bip.

I want our young guns (stars) to become great players with the Cincinnati Reds, not become a superstar with some other team. Citing Brandon Claussen (ChatterRed) was a great example of thinking we acquired gold only to find out it was fools gold.