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Minnesota Twins: Analyzing Dreadful 2012 Starting Pitching, And Looking Ahead to 2013

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Sunday March 17th, 2013

After very disappointing seasons in 2011 (63-99) and 2012 (66-96), the Twins look to rebound in 2013.  The Starting Rotation has been revamped, but still bolsters heavy question marks.

After very disappointing seasons in 2011 (63-99) and 2012 (66-96), the Twins look to rebound in 2013. The Starting Rotation has been revamped, but still bolsters a lack of experience and a proven #1 starter.  In the American League it will mean trouble against the upper echelon teams.

Jake Dal Porto (Baseball Writer)

The Minnesota Twins’ pitching staff was downright awful in 2012. Yes, that’s a harsh assessment, but I think everyone would agree, including the numbers.

Per FanGraphs, the Twins’ rotation posted the worst ERA in the American League with a 5.40 mark. When only the Colorado Rockies had a worse ERA over in the National League, something was seriously wrong, which was indeed the case.

To no surprise, the Twins’ rotation was weak across the board. They had the fourth worst HR/FB (Home-run to fly ball ratio) in baseball. The second worst home-run per nine innings ratio. The worst xFIP (Fielding Independent Percentage). And lastly, the lowest strikeout per nine innings ratio. Worse, these are just a few stats. The list could probably eat up a whole page.

But enough. We get the point: The Twins’ rotation was really bad last year. Now the question is what pieces caused this disaster that probably won’t improve in 2013?

From a broad view, inexperience was the primary complication. From there, several problems arose, especially when injuries struck, or when the regulars were replaced in favor of a young prospect. You could also say that they just didn’t have a ton of talent to compete. It’s a simple theory, yet a fairly accurate one.

Nick Blackburn, 30, was one of Minnesota’s most experienced starters, but his 7.39 ERA in 19 starts skews the experienced point. Carl Pavano, 36, had a 6.00 ERA in 11 starts, and after his start on June. 1, he didn’t pitch again with a shoulder problem. Lastly, Jason Marquis, 33, had a 8.47 ERA in seven starts, and the Twins released him on May 22.

Twins Pitchers at Fort Myers:

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Burnett’s Career Comes Full Circle With 1st Opening Day Start

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Tuesday, March.12, 2013

The Yankees Dealt Burnett to the Bucs prior to the 2012 season. NYY ate 20 of the 33 Million Dollars remaining for 2012 and 2013 years. Burnett was was 10-2 in the 1st half  for the Bucs

The Yankees Dealt Burnett to the Bucs prior to the 2012 season. NYY ate 20 of the 33 Million Dollars remaining for 2012 and 2013 years. Burnett was was 10-2 in the 1st half for the Bucs.

By Brad Cuprik (Pirates Correspondent)

It’s hard to believe that in just a couple weeks time, Arkansas native A.J. Burnett will be making his first Opening Day start on the mound. The 36-year-old Burnett has been in the Major Leagues since 1999, pitching for the Marlins, Blue Jays, Yankees and now enters his second season with the Pirates. It also happens to be the last year of a 5-Year, $82.5 Million Contract he signed in December 2008.

His tenure in the Bronx was simply put, a disaster. When a player signs a contract of that magnitude and then posts an ERA nearly a run over his career mark for a ballclub like the Yankees, you can forgive a player for wanting to fade into obscurity. That’s not Burnett. He did not want to leave the Yanks, stating he had unfinished business but his trade to Pittsburgh and a return to the National League has been a blessing.

AJ Burnett takes a bunted ball to the face in 2012:

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Its A Big Year For Yankees SP Phil Hughes And RP Joba Chamberlain

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Tuesday, February.04/2013

Heading into 2013, Hughes has a Career Record of 52-36 (.591) - with a 4.39 ERA.  He is projected to be the #4 starter for the Yankees in 2013.

Heading into 2013, Hughes has a Career Record of 52-36 (.591) – with a 4.39 ERA. He is projected to be the #4 starter for the Yankees in 2013.  He is 46-34, with a 4.68 ERA for his Career as a Starter opposed to a Reliever – where he was 5-1, with a 1.40 ERA during 2009.

By Chuck Booth (Yankees Correspondent/Website Owner):

Phil Hughes represents a nice #3 or #4 starter for the New York Yankees – and Joba Chamberlain will be counted on more than ever with Rafael Soriano not being back in the bullpen for 2013.  This will be his 7th season in the ‘Bronx for both Pitchers.  The 6 Foot 5 native (Hughes) of California, is coming off a decent season in 2012 – after he struggled with arm fatigue in 2011.  Chamberlain has had a litany of injuries pile up on his 6 Foot 2, 250 LBS frame over the last several years.  Yankees fans all know too well how this man and Joba Chamberlain have been bounced to and from the Starting Rotation to the Relief Corps.  I think it is safe to say the Yankees finally have it right.  Joba is a reliever and Hughes is a Starting Pitcher.

The Yankees have them both locked up on one year deals for 2013.  Chamberlain will make 1.88 Million Dollars – while Hughes will make 7.15 Million Dollars.  With an aging offense this year, the Yankees will be counting on several internal improvements amongst their pitching staffs. These two veterans will need to take it to the next level based on their projections of talent.

Joba Chamberlain – How To Be Awesome

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Minnesota Twins Payroll In 2013 And Contracts Going Forward

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Friday February 1, 2013

Mauer is the highest paid player on the Twins gathering $23,000,000 every year through the 2018 season. He is the face of the Twins. He is going to be dangerous if he can continue to hit like he did in 2012.

Mauer is the highest paid player on the Twins gathering $23,000,000 every year through the 2018 season. He is the face of the Twins. He is going to be dangerous if he can continue to hit like he did in 2012.  Only trailing Pujols in Lifetime Average amongst Active Hitters (.325 to .323), Mauer should take over this Category relatively soon.

Kyle Holland (MLB Reports intern):

In 2012, the Minnesota Twins had a very below average season, disappointing many Twins fans. Coming off an atrocious 2011, they were looking for a good season ahead of them. Who could blame the fans, right? They had some key players coming back after an injury stricken summer in 2011. They were coming back healthy and nothing could stop the Twins from returning to the playoffs. But all was not well as they only had 3 more Wins than in 2011. It’s not like their payroll was even that small either. They were in the middle of the pack with a $94,085,000 payroll. That’s only slightly less than the White Sox and the LA Dodgers, both very close to playing in October.

This year, it appears the Twins payroll has actually dropped. Right now, their 2013 payroll is $73,050,000, considerably less than 2012. Mauer is really their only superstar on the Twins, with Morneau close behind him. On the mound, Carl Pavano just got hurt slipping on his driveway while shoveling snow so he won’t be ready for at least the start of the season, probably longer. Glen Perkins can be used as a starter when needed or be taken out of the bullpen so he’s a solid player to have in the Twins’ pitching repertoire.  They also received Vance Worley from Philadelphia recently and if he can pitch like he did in 2011, he is going to be a man the Twins fall in love with. So with all of these solid players on the Twins, let’s take a look at the Twins 2013 payroll.

Joe Mauer 2012 Highlights: Mature Lyrics – Parental Guidance is advised:

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What Happened To The Once Competitive Twins? Can They Turn It Around?

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Thursday January 17, 2013

After very disappointing seasons in 2011 (63-99) and 2012 (66-96), the Twins look to rebound in 2013.

After very disappointing seasons in 2011 (63-99) and 2012 (66-96), the Twins look to rebound in 2013.  The Twins were a model franchise from 2002-2010.  They won the AL Central Division in 6 out of the 9 years – and one of the years they didn’t win the Division included a 1 Game playoff loss to the White Sox in 2008.  Will 2013 be a return to competitiveness or end up as another rebuilding year?

Kyle Holland (MLB Reports intern):

In 2010 the Minnesota Twins seemed like they would be having themselves a good club in upcoming years. To start off the exciting season they opened up a brand new stadium. Target Field has quickly become one of the most beautiful stadiums in all of baseball. The team ended up with a 94-68 record, quite impressive considering Justin Morneau was knocked out for the remainder of 2010 with a concussion on July 7. They reached the playoffs coming in first in the AL Central proving they didn’t need Morneau to be a successful franchise. They got swept by the Yankees in the ALDS for the second straight year. Even though they were swept, nobody was ignoring the regular season record. It seemed as if they had years to look forward too.

So now comes the 2011 season. Fans had big hopes for their Twins the summer of 2012. No injuries coming into opening day and they had made some moves in the offseason. They signed Japanese shortstop Tsuyoshi Nishioka to fill a whole in the middle infield. Carl Pavano and Jim Thome were also resigned by Minnesota. 2011 looked like it would be a year like 2010 for the Twins.

Awesome Stop Motion Video from a Twins Fan at Target Field

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ATR: Ask the Reports Answers Your Baseball Questions: MLB Non-Waiver Trade Deadline, Tommy Toledo, Ichiro to Yanks, Greinke, Billy Hamilton, Jeff Niemann, Pavano and Colby Lewis

Sunday July 29th, 2012



Jonathan Hacohen:  Posted every Weekend: Your top baseball questions from the past week are answered. E-mail all questions to mlbreports@me.com, message us on Twitter, post on our Facebook Wall and leave comments on our website! There are many ways to reach us and we will get to your questions from all social media outlets!

Jonathan Hacohen: Two days folks. That’s all the time that is left in the MLB Non-Waiver Trade Deadline. All baseball eyes will be on news wire as we expect many more trades to go down by the deadline. I have set the over/under of the number of moves to happen since the Giants got Marco Scutaro at 20. What is your pick?

Many of the big names that were rumored to move have been dealt with. Zack Greinke is an Angel. Scutaro a Giant. Anibal Sanchez and Omar Infante are Tigers. Brett Myers and Francisco Liriano are members of the Whit Sox. Hanley Ramirez joined the Dodgers. But Cole Hamels stayed in Philadelphia, while Huston Street and Carlos Quentin remain in San Diego. Who are the next big names to move? Will Ryan Dempster finally go to L.A. or Atlanta? Will Matt Garza move despite not being healthy? Josh Beckett? Aramis Ramirez? Shane Victorino? Does Houston even have anyone left to trade now that even Chris Johnson has been traded? We will get the answers to all these questions over the next 2 days.

From our prospects file, a name to keep an eye on is Tommy Toledo. No- he is not a rock star or adult movie actor. Tommy is a pitcher in the Milwaukee Brewers system. He gets my vote for the best baseball name. Think about- what a name for a closer. Now pitching for the Brewers, #13…..Toooommmyy…..Tolleeeeedoooooo….. Yes, just a great ball name and yes, he can pitch too. Tommy tore up A-ball this year, pitching for Wisconsin of the Midwest League. 7-1 in 21 games, 1.95 ERA, 6 saves, 0.838 WHIP and 31/11 SO/BB. Standing 6’3″ and weighing close to 200 lbs, the 23-year old Tommy Toledo is a baseball prospect to follow. His Twitter handle is @TommyToledo13. Follow him, say hello…and make sure you say that the Reports sent ya!

For our Batting Stance Guy featured video of the week, we present Gar’s look at the New 2012 MLB Batting Stances. BSG at the start of the season took at look at some new stances that will have you laughing all the way to the batting cage:

Now let’s get to your top questions of the week: Read the rest of this entry

Looking Back at Albert Pujols’ First Week with the Angels

Friday April 13th, 2012

Sam Evans: When the most advanced hitter in the history of the game switched teams this past offseason, it shook up the baseball universe. Albert Pujols leaving the Cardinals weakened the N.L. Central and made the A.L. West one of the best divisions in baseball. So far Pujols hasn’t gotten off to an amazing start. Still, we’re only a week into the season, so it doesn’t really matter. Let’s take a up-close look at what Pujols has done through his first six games.

First game: In his regular season debut, Albert Pujols was 0 for 3 with a walk. Despite a crowd that was desperately waiting to go crazy after Pujols did something special, Pujols struggled against Royals starter Bruce Chen. In his first at-bat, Pujols lined into a double play. Next, Pujols popped up to Royals third basemen Mike Moustakas. Later, facing the flame throwing Aaron Crow, Pujols struck out on just three pitches.Finally, Greg Holland intentionally walked Pujols in the ninth inning. Read the rest of this entry

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