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Sports Minnesota Twins Kurt Suzuki and Glen Perkins

Published on July 31st, 2014 | by Thompson

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The Wildest MLB Trade Deadline Day I’ve Ever Seen

In a wild MLB Trade Deadline Day that saw David Price to Detroit, Jon Lester and Jonny Gomes to Oakland for Yoenis Cespedes, John Lackey to St. Louis for Joe Kelly, and even Stephen Drew from Boston to the Yankees, Terry Ryan and the Minnesota Twins’ front office can hold their heads relatively high. They locked up All-Star catcher Kurt Suzuki for two more years at $12 million with a slick vesting option for a third year based on plate appearances, as Mike Berardino tweets.

The Twins played it smart and basically have full control of that vesting year. However, with Kennys Vargas being called up to fill the designated hitter spot in light of Kendrys Morales being traded back to Seattle and the “triumphant” return of Joe Mauer to first base and not catcher, it doesn’t look good for Josmil Pinto, who now has plenty of time to progress defensively in Rochester. It certainly wouldn’t be a surprise if Suzuki gets 485 plate appearances in 2016, but it would mean Pinto still can’t catch and Mauer still won’t catch. With his improved approach at the plate that Parker Hageman recognized in video reconnaissance, maybe three years of Kurt Suzuki won’t be so bad. 

Let’s just hope Pinto learns to frame pitches at least as well as Suzuki in a hurry so Ryan can move Suzuki sooner rather than later.

He did make another slick move in giving waiver claim Sam Fuld back to Oakland for starting pitcher Tommy Milone. I like Milone, whose given name is Tomaso Anthony Milone. Milone has put up impressive numbers in nearly 500 MLB innings pitched, but his strikeout numbers have steadily fallen. If he gives up even fewer homers and walks, which would be expected given Target Field and Rick Anderson, Milone will be an effective starter until 2018 when he becomes a free agent. And he will be better and cheaper in the role Kevin Correia has been failing to fill. Correia will be waived, and I wouldn’t be shocked if he ends up the fifth starter or long reliever of a National League Wild Card contender…say, the Pirates. Any return on Correia is good return. Hell, maybe if we throw in a reliever they’ll give Vance Worley back.

Of course, we must also consider Ryan’s move to send Morales back to Seattle, which brought relief pitcher Stephen Pryor in what looks to me like a salary dump of sorts. Pryor’s only 22, but I don’t see Ryan’s interest except that Pryor’s biggest problem is walks, and if there’s anything the Twins organization preaches it’s, “Don’t give free passes.”

I didn’t understand the move with so many young pitchers to throw out there as relievers: Thielbar, Fien, Pressly, Tonkin, even AJ Achter; and I still don’t understand it after none of our relievers were traded: Burton, Duensing, Deduno, or even Perkins (although that would have been heartbreaking).

So the Sam Fuld trade was outstanding, the Kenndrys Morales trade was pretty terrible, and perhaps the best move Terry Ryan made was to extend Kurt Suzuki at reasonable dollars and years. The Twins will most certainly be active at the waiver deadline, with Correia, Burton, and maybe even Deduno to be considered. It’s the most wonderful time of the year.

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About the Author

When Thompson isn't busy writing for Go Gonzo Journal, you may find him drunk at the movie theater with Professor Heinous or stirring up trouble in a bar with his attorney. Thompson also enjoys skiing, hiking, camping, and watching and betting on baseball and football.



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