Luke in MN

  • joined Dec 10, 2009
  • last login Jun 30, 2014
  • posts 85
  • comments 6917
User Blog

The Twins have the best starters in the AL.

  This has been discussed in some of the fine trade-deadline stuff this week, but the starting pitching staff has taken a ton of grief lately, and I thought it was time to make the case that we...

New helmets and Morneau


With Morneau coming back from one of multiple career concussions and with several of the All Stars sporting the new, slimmed-down safety helmet from Rawlings, is there any excuse for Morneau to not be wearing this when he comes back? Time for a leader like Morneau to step up and make a stand for his remaining brain cells, regardless of whether people think they look cool (and I actually don't think they look too bad).


Home runs at Target Field

  Maybe it's a bit early to write the tale of home runs at Target Field, but I've been having fun with the data from Hit Tracker, and I thought I'd share a bit.  All data is from...


The Lowell Poll

It is widely reported that Mike Lowell is available for trade, and there are also some reports that the Twins have had internal discussions about him.  Since he's basically trapped on Boston's...


Interleague survey!

Count me among the heretics who like interleague.  The Brewers "rivalry" is sort of fun.  But even more, I like the fact that we get to size up a few random NL teams too.  This is all the more so...

BP interview with Cuddyer


Pay article. Best answer: " I give it 100 percent every single time I’m on the field.... DL: Just 100 percent? A lot of guys say they give 110 percent. MC: You can’t give 110 percent. There’s no such thing as 110 percent unless you’re talking about something like the amount of calories you can take into your system as opposed to what the daily allowance is."

Killebrew vs. Thome vs. Hrbek vs. Morneau


This is pretty cool. Fangraphs has just debuted a great tool allowing you to compare historical WAR information (and other stats) in all sort of interesting ways. I can't figure out how to paste in the pictures here, but the link will take you to some lovely graphical comparisons of the four Twins first-base greats. Fangraph's article on the new features and a link to sortable all-time stats is here:

Kevin Goldstein on Twins prospect Bruce Pugh


Though I'm sure more knowledgeable TwinkieTowners are all over this, I hadn't heard of Bruce Pugh until reading this. Pugh is sort of an unfortunate name, but apparently a guy to watch (pay article): "Bruce Pugh, RHP, Twins (High-A Fort Myers) .... A 19th-round pick in 2008, I hadn't heard of Pugh the first time I saw him take the mound, and neither had the scouts in attendance. Then he grabbed everyone's attention by parking his fastball at 94 mph and showing off a decent breaking ball. After striking out 99 over 85 innings last year, mostly in relief, Pugh has moved to starting in the Florida State League, and if anything, he's getting better, including Friday night's start of seven one-hit innings with ten strikeouts."

BP interview with Slama


Yet another Twins minor leaguer who can give a pretty intelligent interview. I'm anxious to see this guy at the MLB level.

Ramos's raking means Mauer may move?


An intriguing quote from Will Carroll at Baseball Prospectus in an article discussing Mauer's bruise (pay article): "Ramos' play is said to have the Twins brass excited enough to actually discuss moving Mauer from behind the plate on a full-time basis." Hard to know exactly what to make of this, but I assume "actually discuss" means something like "mutter the previously unspeakable idea of" rather than "actively plan".

Gardenhire: Bullpen Genius


Here's a clever little metric by Fangraphs's Steve Sommer that measures how effectively a team uses its relief pitchers. The question is, has the team been putting its best relievers (measured by projected ERA by CHONE) in the highest-leverage situations? Sommers ranks the relievers by projected ERA and then by the average leverage score for the game situations in which they've been inserted. Ideally, the 2 rankings would line up. Turns out the Twins are currently tied for first in this measure. The Royals and Tigers are middling, and the Indians and White Sox are tied for last. Clearly not the end-all, be-all for bullpen-usage assessment. There's no assessment of matchup effectiveness, e.g., and you would actually be penalized if you recognized that one of your pitchers was better or worse than CHONE thought they were. But interesting. What do you think? Are the Twins' relievers being used in the right situations?


Off-day trivia: the 2010 season so far

I found a fun page of baseball information on, and I thought it would lend itself to some off-day trivia questions.  Here's the link (, but see how you do...

Jayson Stark on Nathan replacements and Ramos


Jayson Stark reports that the Twins aren't looking at Wilson Ramos as a trade chip at this point. Also, since Nathan may require 16 months to get back to his old self, the Twins may be looking at a 2-year reliever deal if they are going to acquire someone with their Nathan-injury insurance dough.

Rochester coaches interview re: Ramos


From Baseball Prospectus. No subscription required.

Baseball Prospectus on top Twins prospects


Here's a summary of updates on the Twins' top prospects by BP's excellent prospect dude, Kevin Goldstein. The link is to part 1 and part 2 is here: Both require subscriptions. Hicks, #26: The Twins, being "notoriously cautious," are having Hicks repeat at low-A. Sano, #35: Gulf-coast league action. Revere, #46: Nice spring and has skills that should translate well in the majors. AA. Ramos, #65: Had scouts "fawning" in spring training, and sets himself up as juicy, juicy trade bait for the Twins. AAA. Gibson, #71: Also excellent reports this spring, demonstrating that he's deserving of a higher ranking. High-A.

Interview with Thome


Mauer = lefty Manny, and other insight from Big Jimmer over at Baseball Prospectus. No subscription required.

Interview with Jim Dwyer on Revere, coaching in minors


Unfortunately behind a pay wall, but a good interview with Jim Dwyer, currently the Twins' high A batting coach. Good interview all around, and this answer about Ben Revere was a highlight: "JD: Ben is one of the most talented players I’ve ever worked with and that I’ve ever seen. I think Ben’s biggest problem is just his youth and lack of experience. He needs to learn the strike zone better and once he does, he‘ll be special. And I don’t think you can teach a player the strike zone. You have to just play games, get your repetitions, get your at-bats, and then, slowly, you learn the strike zone. You learn to channel your aggression. You can be overaggressive, and experienced pitchers will use that against inexperienced hitters. They’ll use that aggressiveness against them. They’ll throw the ball out of the strike zone, knowing that they’re going to swing at it. I keep telling the players that it’s the hitter’s responsibility to make the pitcher throw you strikes. If you don’t make him throw you strikes, he won’t. It’s one of those things and it’s probably Ben’s biggest thing, because his bat speed and hand-eye coordination are off the charts. If he ever learns—and he will learn—to condense his zone, he’s going to be a great player. I really believe that. His defense—he can go get balls. I’ve been in the game thirty-something years now, and he’s made plays I’ve never seen guys make before. And he’s got power; he’ll flash power. He can steal bases. He’s going to hit for average. He can do it all. He’s going to be a great player."


How the Twins win 100 games in 2010

The various projection systems have the Twins winning about 83 games or so and winning the division by maybe 2-5 games.  But come on, it's spring!  Any decent Twins fan aims higher than that. So...

The Indians still hate us


Following up on the doom-and-gloom-casting piece from the Royals site yesterday, comes this gem from those good folks over at Let's Go Tribe. Poor Tribe. I think Joe Mauer's mom should bring them a hot dish.

BP interviews Revere on stealing bases


No subscription required. Nice interview, and I think Revere comes across well. He's obviously working hard on learning his craft.

Heyman on Mauer, Beckett


Not a lot new here. Talks are quietly progressing. A deal should get done, probably before the season starts. Somewhat interesting to hear that they might be comfortable negotiating into the season if necessary.


Nathan and my power rankings

Taking Nathan out of my projection system costs the Twins about 3-4 wins.  Rankings are after the jump.  (here's where I first posted about the way I do things: h...


More Best Twins of All Time

  Following up on DJL44’s recent post on the best Twins of all time, I thought I’d share a similar list I’d created taking a similar, but slightly different approach.  Rankings are after the...


Strib Gardy interview

There was an "Only in your Sunday paper" interview with Gardy by LEN3 today.  A nice read all around, and I thought it hit on some pretty interesting spots.  Re: 3rd base: Will be...


Power Rankings!

How do your Twins stand?

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