Tagged: Twins

Should the Mets sign Jesse Crain?

The off-season is still really in it’s early stages, but the Mets have been connected to pretty much every relief pitcher on the market. They signed D.J. Carrasco which I think will turn out to be a tremendoud signing; Mets relievers did a horrible job in the middle to late innings in ’10.

I’m thinking the Mets should consider Jesse Crain for the later innings on a multi-year deal. Not only is there not much to lose, but if Crain continues to dwindle on the market due to being a Type A, his price will eventually come down as we soon approach the magical day of the first day of Spring Training.

Among other choices, are Grant Balfour and our good friend Pedro Feliciano. But I think Crain fits the bill. A big ballpark for a strikeout and fly ball pitcher will do the Mets wonders as they attemp to patch up the later innings and not blow a win for Johan, Pelf, or Niese.

Keep in mind, he won’t be any less effective than Joaquin Beniot over his respective three years.

Just a thought, but I’d like the to see if the Mets will consider Crain, who is a great guy and a tremendous hard throwing late inning reliever.


20 Baseball Facts That You Didn’t Know

These are 20 facts that you didn’t know. Trust me, you definetly didn’t know. Not that these are in any order, but you can rank them for yourself. I think all are equally interesting. Enjoy!

Matt Kemp had a -0.24 UZR in 2010. Horrible season for Matt Kemp. I’m not going to say that Ned Colletti and the Dodgers management pressure didn’t have anything to do with this, but if he didn’t have that final week surge, he might be jealous of Melky Cabrera’s season.

Alexi Casilla has had the last AB of the regular season 2 out of the last 3 seasons. Good news is the one of those was a walk off that got his team, the Twins, in to the postseason, but the other was a game ending fly out that got the White Sox in to the postseason.

Ray King holds the record for most consecutive games without issuing an intentional walk. One of my favorite pitchers of all time. Not that this stat is found in record books or in the Hall of Fame, but I thought you’d be interested in knowing this.

Joe Inglett threw a knuckle ball at 54 MPH this season, and recorded an out. According to Fangraphs, this is true, but he can thank his incredible pitching staff for making that possible.

Darren Oliver was the first American league pitcher to pitch to a National league batter not including the world series or All-Star game. Ironically, this game was a matchup between the Texas Rangers and the San Francisco Giants.

The 1990 Twins executed 2 triple plays in a game. If anybody was wondering, I don’t think Bengie Molina was on the opposing team. Perhaps the turf at the Metrodome helped the Twins fielders out.

Johnny Burnett, in 1932, got 9 hits in a game. Cesar Izturis should take note. Even though this game was 18 innings, 9 hits is nearly impossible. I guess they didn’t believe in intentional walks back then.

Zack Greinke in 2010 was 11th in WAR among qualified pitchers. His value is extremely high which is something people don’t realize. He is in line to bring at least 2 superstar players back to KC plus two other extremely good young players.

The only time in history that two sets of siblings played in the same infield in the same game were the Larkin’s and the Boone’s in the mid 90’s. On a side note, Al Leiter was once scheduled to face his brother on the Phillies, Marc, but a rainout thought differently

The Texas Rangers selected both Anthony Ranaudo and Drew Pomeranz in the 2007 draft, both of whom obviously did not sign. Most of that draft for the Rangers was used to acquire Cliff Lee, Christian Guzman, and Bengie Molina. I do have a feeling though that signing Pomeranz and Ranuado would have been a tad smart.

Before every game, umpires must rub around 6 dozen balls to get rid of the shine off the balls. This is obviously so Ken Macha wont march out of the dugout and ask the umpires, who are apparently shoe polish experts, to determine if there is polish on the ball, which isn’t as easy as it sounds.

Justin Upton, Ryan Zimmerman, Mark Reynolds B.J. Upton, and David Wright all played for the same high school team at the same time. That’s like 8474683 home runs every game right?

The Cleveland Indians’ 1999 draft produced only 3 players who have gone on to play Major League Baseball; Jeff Baker, Fernando Cabrera, and Ben Francisco. All of the others are what we call “duds” and this draft was widely considered the worst draft by a single team in MLB history.

 B.J. Upton’s real name is “Melvin Emmanuel Upton.” This is just me, but M.E. Upton doesn’t exactly have that ring to it.

Kila Ka’aihue has a brother in the A’s organization, Kala Ka’aihue. Kala was a dominant minor league first baseman back in 2006 but everything went downhill from there

When Charlie Kerfeld, whose uniform number was 37, learned that Jim Deshaies had signed for $110,000 in 1987. He asked for and received $110,037.37 plus 37 boxes of orange Jell-O.

A “shuuto”, a Japanese gyroball type pitch, is a backward slider, which is horrible for the elbow but used prominently by japanese pitchers. Dice-K apparently throws one, as does Hisashi Iwakuma. Japanese pitchers though have 10 pitches in their arsenal though I wouldn’t be surprised to see even more have a history of throwing one.

As part of his contract, Tim Beckham had to personalize every Baseball that he signs. On the other hand, Hanley Ramirez is not allowed to sweetspot any ball he signs.

Ryan Ludwick and Cody Ross are the only two players in Major League Baseball who bat right and throws left. You would expect there to be more, but I bet there are more left handed batters who throw right.

Kauffman Stadium has the second largest jumbo-tron in sports. Which venue has the largest? Well your going to have to figure it out yourself, I don’t give answers away like that, but it rhymes with Schmallas Schmowboys Stadium.

-Dave Gershman

What to do with the Marlins Bullpen

Lots of talk has been centered around the Marlins bullpen. Personally, I think Leo Nunez has to go.

Some ideas that came to mind involve the Marlins shopping him for a young CF or 3B prospect with less upside than most but ceiling of a solid regular.

I first thought of Ryan Kalish and Ben Revere. Both of whom have their value high enough.

Kalish could be available due to the fact that he is blocked. He profiles as a potential 15 HR, 25 SB, .290/.360 type of guy.

Revere will hit less home runs but hit for a higher average and steal more bases.

Both players are solid defensively. Leo Nunez on the other hand is undervalued due to his horrid back to back Septembers. Not only is he a potential closer, but he has proven that until the aforementioned evil month, he can come out back to back nights and either close the game out or set up the closer while sitting at 95 MPH.

He is also under team control for several more years despite getting a raise which could total out to be $4.5MM.

This is all just speculation but I’d be surprised if Nunez is with the Marlins come Spring Training.

However, I do expect them to pursue someone like Joe Beimel or Tim Byrdak. Both of whom are lefties who can mentor young southpaw, Michael Dunn, which is what the Marlins are hoping to get done, no pun intended.

Also keep in mind that Joe Beimel has been highly effective as a reliever in his career. Not once has he had a particularly bad season.

Let me know what you think!

Interview with Twins Prospect, Niko Goodrum.

This is an interview with Twins IF Prospect Niko Goodrum. Niko was the Minnesota Twins 2nd round pick in the 2010 Draft. I look at Niko as the same type of player as Billy Hamilton, who is one of the Cincinnati Reds top prospects. Niko played his first pro season in the GCL in Ft. Myers and looks to get to a much higher level next season. Something that I found interesting about this interview, he and the last player I interview not too long ago, Shawon Dunston Jr., both have the same favorite player; Dexter Fowler. Anyway, Niko was great in this interview and it was a lot of fun. I hope you enjoy it.

Me: Talk to me about your first season of pro ball and how happy you were to have begun quickly after the draft.

Niko: My first season of pro ball was great . I enjoyed every moment of it . I’ve learned so many things in such a short time . Enjoyed meeting all of my new teammates . My decision to start so soon was one of the best decisions because it got me into pro ball to get adjusted and experienced.

Me: Explain the process from after the draft to the when you signed and how that went.

Niko: My first season of pro ball was great. I enjoyed every moment of it . I’ve learned so many things in such a short time. Enjoyed meeting all of my new teammates . My decision to start so soon was one of the best decisions because it got me into pro ball to get adjusted and experienced .

Me: What are your expectations for next season and what are you most excited for?

Niko: My expectation for next year is to move to the next level . Get back to Spring Training and to get started .

Me: In my opinion, you are the perfect Twins type of player because you are very toolsy and play the game right. What kind of player do you see yourself as going forward?

Niko: Thanks . Going forward I will always play the game the right way . Or as we say it , the Twins Way . Playing hard and giving my all each and everyday . Doing what I have to do to get the job done . I love this game . In the future , I see myself as a fast , quick , strong , athletic , fundemental , hardworking and smart baseball player . Never giving up .

Me: Describe your game and what you think is your best tool.

Niko: My game is being able to play multiple positions at the pro level . I feel I’m capable of being a 5 tool guy . At this time my arm is my best tool .

Me: What do you plan to do this off-season to prepare for Spring Training and the Upcoming Season?

Niko: To get ready for Spring Training and the upcoming season , I am doing lifting programs , speed training , pilates , fielding ground balls , throwing , hitting and running .

Me: Who has been your Major influence to getting you to this level?

Niko: My parents were a great influence . But my Dad has been my biggest influence throughout it all .

Me: Have you reached out or talked to any other Twins recent picks i the years or in the 2010 draft such as Aaron Hicks or from the recent draft someone like Alex Wimmers?

Niko: Yes , Aaron and Alex both played in instructional league with me . Their both great guys . Aaron and I became real cool . My roommate is JD Williams . Him and I became great friends . A friend for life . 

Me: Your favorite player in Major League Baseball is _________

Niko: My favorite player in the Major League is Dexter Fowler .

Me: Last question, who was the best pitcher you faced in High School and in the minors in ’10?

Niko: The best pitcher I faced in High School is Cam Bedrosian and in the Minor League is was a lefty for the Orioles . Can’t remember his name . I believe he was from the Dominican Republic .


Twins lock up Denard!!!!

Denard Span is one of Baseball’s bright young stars and is really one of the bettter good guys in the game. I think this deal certainly means dedication to the team but dedication to Denard himself. He means a lot to Twins Territory and means a lot to Baseball fans among the U.S. like myself. I am so happy that the Twins locked up Denard and I think that this can only mean the Twins have a great young core and will be able to compete for plenty of years to come One of the reasons I love Denard is becuase he is just such a nice guy. He really cares about the Twins and the Twin Cities. He also cares about his fans. He responds to almost every single question a fan asks him. The Twins have such a good management and thankfully, their young core is locked up with a few to get their long term contracts soon.. Obviously, the next big contract is Joe Mauer, but for now, Twins fans and Span fans like myself can dance in the streets because at last, the Twins locked him up!!!!

He’s just Spanny being Spanny!!