So, here we go.
66-96 was the record, and here are the thoughts to it.
As I said before the season even started, our pitching was going to be a nightmare. We didn't do **** to address it, and adding Jason Marquis wasn't nearly enough nor was it even a stepping stone measure to anything decent.
I couldn't shake my head enough knowing that our leading pitcher had 12 ****ing wins on the season. Yes, that's right, 12 god damn wins. Scott Diamond appeared to be (sorry for this awful pun) a diamond in the rough all year. However, I didn't see anything out of him that makes me think he's a bona fide #1. So, we're still in a loss there.
Good to see the Japanese project is over. I was high on him coming over, but it clearly didn't work out, and now we're stuck with a gaping hole in the middle... again.... when we had it filled with JJ Hardy.
Lets see, the hitting... outside of Joe Mauer and Josh Willingham, no point in really talking about the good. Mauer was the only one to hit over .300. Willy was the only one to bring in over 100 runs and the only one to hit over 25 dingers.
Trevor Plouffe... he has the power. That's evident, but it's also evident that he isn't disciplined enough, or nor is he smart enough to understand that when you're in an 0-2 hole, you're not going to get the perfect pitch in your wheel house to drive. You have to expect something skipping in front of the plate or high heat. He failed in that regard, and barely missed the 100K mark for the season with only 99 hits total.
Ben Revere was a hell of a great sight with 40 stolen bases. He hit nearly .300 hitting, but couldn't amount anything in the form of runs or RBI. No homers either, which I normally wouldn't be too worried about, if he was hitting in the mid .320 area.
Justin hitting .267 was a disappointment and he appears to be on his last leg as a consistent, offensive threat. He's an easy strike out target, and against lefties - there is no point to having him in the line up. 19 dingers and 77 RBI also don't speak to me that he's "back" even though he got almost 140 games worth. I suppose, one more season from him isn't a bad idea... what else do we have to lose?
The Twins were bad... yeah... but the closer role is something they NEED to address. Matt Capps, for whatever ****ing reason the Twins think so, isn't a god damn closer. 14 game closures last year and an ERA nearly 4... that's not going to get it done. Glen Perkins stepped in, but it was painful to see that he's not a closer either, and 4 or 5 blown saves later, the Twins are a further joke.
I mentioned it previously, but lets dig into the front office a bit.
is back as full time GM. I've never heard myself say it more, but thank ****ing god. Bill Smith was an absolute joke, and even with a bigger budget, and a new ballpark, couldn't put a consistently competitive team on the field. Enter Ryan, what we'd call a master at budget baseball... and frankly, that's what this team needs to get back to; pitching, base running, and timely hitting. The team strayed far from those areas, and the results are there... back to back 95+ loss seasons and a first round sweep the previous year in the playoffs.
Where does Ryan need to dig into? Well, Rochester isn't overly deep thanks to the team raping it's future, and not drafting well in the least bit. It's time to reevaluate everything on the club. Carl Pavano coming back at $8M? Yeah, better rethink that one. Matt Capps coming back at all? You'd better not even ****ing dare. Justin at 2 years left? Hmm...
Lots to think about.
I'll be waiting very patiently for this team to make some FA splash, because there are holes everywhere, and the farm isn't really an option. Trades and free agency to bring in pitching, pitching, and more pitching is what it's going to take. Getting some consistent, major league hitters, also needs to be a priority.
Rick Anderson coming back is a joke, IMO. When is the last time he did anything of note, other than get to being at odds with his pitchers and not further their development? The joke is that Minnesota drafts them, refines the changeup and sends them onto other teams to learn to pitch. It's no further evident than the wealth of talent on other teams, that MN had and either gave up on, or couldn't get to conform and sent packing.
*RA Dickey - no likey knuckleball, go away.
*Kyle Lohse - couldn't conform to the change up every pitch, gone.
*Johan Santana - didn't want to be here anymore, sought out minimal more money elsewhere to not be here.
*Matt Garza - a head case entirely, but didn't like throwing change ups every pitch, gone.
I don't get it.. I simply don't get it.
But, whatever. Lots of time through the hockey less winter to stew on this team.