Monday, July 22, 2013

Monday Morning Madness: July 22, 2013

The Twins are on fire.  They have won back-to-back series for the first time since late May/early June.  In doing so, they have put a little cushion between themselves and the last place White Sox.  The Twins really capitalized on the Indians' pathetic defense (most notably Lonnie Chisenhall, who I feel very sorry for at this point) and won two of three games over the weekend.  Winning four out of six games is a major accomplishment with this roster.  

Don't trade Morneau?

Wally Fish of Puckett's Pond wrote a really great piece pleading with the Twins to keep Justin Morneau.  I certainly appreciate that point of view, but I do not agree with it.  I made a chart of where Morneau ranks in some of the more important basic and advanced stats, among qualifying 1st baseman (29 total): 

1st Rank

This chart does not support keeping Morneau at any price near what he makes this season.  Of course, almost everyone would agree with that.

There are really only three reasons to sign Morneau beyond this season:
  1. Popularity - the fans love him. 
  2. Low payroll - might as well spend money somewhere
  3. Best they can do - who would replace him?
Personally, I think those are all terrible reasons to keep a relatively unproductive player on the roster.  I'm an emotionless robot, so I have no time for sentimentality.  In addition, I hate spending money just to spend money and I hate the idea that the organization can't find someone better.  Lyle Overbay has been roughly the same player as Morneau this season, and he makes $1.25 million.  I don't care about keeping the payroll low to layer the owners' pockets, but I also don't like the idea of throwing money away on an average player, just because he's been here for a long time.

According to Fangraphs, Morneau has been worth about $3.6 million this season and was worth $1.2 million last season.  If the Twins can sign him to a reasonable contract, say 2 years, $14 million, then sure, go ahead.  A longer or more lucrative contract is a waste of money. 

Don't trade Perkins!

I am going to get emotional about Glen Perkins.  I love to watch him pitch.  He's one of the few things I enjoy about this team, especially now that Aaron Hicks is back on the strikeout train.  The at-bat Carlos Santana had against him on Saturday night was amazing.  It's important to mention that Santana has great plate discipline.  Anyway, Perkins got ahead of him and then tried to finish him off with two straight sliders down-and-in.  Santana laid off, but I'm not sure many other hitters would have.  Those pitches ran the count full.  At which point, I'd like to think Perkins just thought to himself "F it, I'm blowing him away."  He rifled a 97 MPH fastball at Santana's eyes and he couldn't resist.  It was fantastic. 

If the Twins are offered a top 50 prospect or a productive young MLB player for Perkins, I guess they would have to take it.  I'd be sad, but I'd move on.  I'd become a fan of his new team too. 

Plouffe batting 2nd?

Right now, the Twins lineup means next to nothing.  The team is generally pretty bad and regardless of how you order this lineup, they won't score many runs.  However, Trevor Plouffe is second on the team in slugging and his on-base percentage isn't very special at .320.  Wouldn't it make more sense to move Plouffe to the clean-up spot and Justin Morneau up to the second spot?  Morneau has a slightly higher OBP and a lower SLG.  Eh, it wouldn't matter; who cares?

Ideally, the Twins would just bat Joe Mauer in all nine positions.  Wait.  (Movie idea:  baseball team only plays best player, uses series of masks to make it work; hijinks)  Ok, I'm back.

You know what would be great?  If Eddie Rosario becomes Jason Kipnis.  That guy is a player. 
Time for Madness...


Guess who learned how to make simple animations this weekend?

I promise to only use this power for good:


Fun Stat!

The lowest slugging percentage in July from a player in Twins' history (minimum 50 PA)? 

Alexi Casilla back in 2009.  He posted a robust .163 SLG that July, but he did produce one double. 

Star wipe to 2013 where Clete Thomas has a .146 SLG and zero extra-base hits.  If he can maintain that awesome rate, he'll be the new record holder!  I've said it once and I'll say it again:  Clete Thomas looks great in a Rochester Red Wings uniform. 

Baseball Card from the past/Upcoming post

We all remember Alf's illustrious career with the Dodgers.  However, we don't remember the journey that he took to get there.  Later this week, I'll be chronicling his meteoric rise, sudden fall, and late resurgence.  Check out my blog later this week for more. 

Former Twin Update - Jose Mijares

In 33.1 innings with the Giants, Mijares has struck out 38, walked 10, eaten 65 pork chops and has a 2.43 ERA.  His BABIP is .357, so it's possible that he's actually been better than that sparkling ERA.  Mijares was hardly popular in Minnesota, but he had his moments.  This is probably the best he's ever pitched.  Way to go, Terry Ryan. 

3 Things about Casey Fien!

Last weekend, I wrote in my phone "screen grab Fien 3 things from Sunday - bottom 7, first batter" and now I'm not sure why.  Take a look at the photo and try to let me know what I was thinking.  It might have actually been Swarzak-related, in which case I was probably going to make a Bigfoot joke.  Not sure.  LMK.

Link to something I wrote

Last week, I reflected on the AL and NL award predictions that I made back in March.  I changed everything!  It was wild.  You can find these literary masterpieces here:  American League  National League

Have fun.  Responsibly.  

Parting Poem - Goodbye Justin

Oh Juuuuuuuuustin
You are so great
Oh Juuuuuuuuuuuuuustin
You were MVP
Oh Juuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuustin
You will be missed
Oh Juuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuustin
Thanks for the prospect
Oh Juuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuustin

Have a nice week, everyone!

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