Twins have had a history of being stingy in the trading market, especially for sort of big name players: Adrian Beltre, J.J. Hardy, etc. I am going to look back at the trades that the Twins have made in the last few years and determine who came out ahead in the trades.
Terry Ryan: (most notable trades)
*On December 13, 1999, Terry Ryan sent, under the Rule 5 draft, minor leaguer Jared Camp to the Marlins for future Cy Young Award Winner, Johan Santana.
On top of these trades, Terry Ryan also made several stupid trades. However, all of these trades benefited the Twins:
*Johan Santana - AllStar (05-07), 2x Cy Young Award Winner (04 and 06), Gold Glove Winner (07), Triple Crown Winner (06) with 19 wins, 245 K, and a 2.77 ERA. K'd Twins career high 17 on August 19, 2007 vs. Rangers.
**Jason Bartlett - speed and small ball type player with the Twins earned Bartlett the nickname of the "Piranhas" (one of four Twins). Great overall Shortstop for the Twins...
***Shannon Stewart - Finished 4th in the MVP voting in 2003 (Blue Jays and Twins). Stewart helped vault the Twins to pennant titles in years: 03, 04, 06.
****Joe Nathan, Boof Bonser, Francisco Liriano - Nathan has a career ERA of 2.80 with 210 saves since 2004. To date, Nathan has only once had an ERA over 2 (05) and currently holds an ERA over 2 at 2.18. Boof Bonser has bounced from starting rotation to bullpen and first found his true place in the bullpen last year. Bonser features a huge curveball and has the ability to be a top reliever. Liriano, since 2006, has had his ups and many downs. 2006 was by far his best year: All-Star, 2nd in Rookie of the Year to Justin Verlander, 2x Rookie Pitcher of the Month (06), 2.16 ERA, 144 K, 12-3 record as a 2006 rookie. Underwent TJ surgery and have yet to see the 2006 form of the Franchise.
*****Luis Castillo - Castillo's 1.5 years in Minnesota were well regarded. Castillo was the best fielding Twin since Chuck Knoblauch. Castillo set the record for most consecutive games without an error until Placido Polanco broke it with a season with 0 errors. Castillo was a 3x NL Gold Glove Winner, 3x NL All-Star, 2x MLB Stolen Base Leader, and a World Series winner.
******Alexi Casilla - Casilla had a career year in 2008 with a .281 AVG, 7 HR, 50 RBI. Casilla has been sent down several times to AAA to clear his head and also settle him down. Casilla won the second base job in 2008 after a month in AAA, and started 2009 as the starting 2B. However, with a bad start to 09, Casilla was once more demoted to AAA, where he hit .336. Casilla has since been recalled and shows signs of improvement.
Bill Smith: (trades)
None of these trades have seemed to work out, aside from the third one, but that is yet to be determined if that will turn out in the Twins favor or if Deeds catches fire with the Cubs:
*Delmon Young - Finished 2nd in the 2007 Rookie of the Year to Boston 2B, Dustin Pedroia; Finished the AL leader in outfielder assists in 2007. Young was moved to LF when he came to Minnesota and has struggled with catching fly balls, although runners never tried to test Delmon's cannon of an arm. In 2008, he committed 8 errors as the Twins LF but led all AL left fielders with 11 outfield assists. His bat caught fire the second half of 2008, but he has not really been the same player nor lived up to his potential that he was capable of as seen in his rookie season. This trade has appeared to be a Twins bust. Brendan Harris has bounced between starting 2B, to SS, platton 3B, utility player, and now back to SS. Harris features a nice bat along with a pretty good glove...he is about league average in all aspects of the game. Jason Pridie, though in contention for the starting CF position in 2008, has never been a starter for the Twins (except in late September of 2008). Pridie will never be anything more than a AAAA player. Meanwhile, Garza and Bartlett vaulted the Tampa Bay Rays from one of the worst teams in the Majors to the AL East Crown, AL Championship Winners, and losers of the World Series.
Jason Bartlett (via Keith Allison)
Bartlett, Most Valuable Rays player, currently on the DL, has the highest batting average in the american league right now and is currently one of the best SS in the AL. Garza, always one of the Twins prized prospects, has shown it in Tampa as he has nailed down the 2nd - 3rd spot in the rotation. Morlan has yet to be seen. This trade seems to have in favor of Tampa Bay and a bust for the Twins.
2nd only to Cleveland's Grady Sizemore in defense, Gomez has taken over Torii Hunter's spot with pride (at least defensively). Offensively, Gomez is very streaky and so far this season, he has yet to hit a hot spot. Humber is also streaky but overall appears to be a very good prospect as a relief pitcher. Mulvey and Guerra are the only ones in the Santana trade to yet see the Majors. Mulvey has been stuck in AAA for the past 2 seasons and has done a respectable job there and could be a starter in the Majors in 2010. Guerra still has a ways to go, but his potential is still sky high, only if he can control his pitches. However, at the present time, this trade has gone in favor of the Mets, as Santana led the league in ERA in 2008 (2.53) and once again is tearing up the NL to the tune of a 1.77 ERA with 60 K through 66 IP and a 7-2 record. This trade so far has been a Twins bust.
***Since Monroe didnt really pan out and the Cubs have yet to see Doug Deeds perform satisfactory, this trade cannot yet be determined...but right now, the Twins have come out with the better hand, as Monroe hit several game winning HR for Minnesota.
Recent years of trading have not been too kind to the Minnesota Twins. Bill Smith has seemed to be worse than Terry Ryan, at least in terms of trading. Free agent signing looks to be Smith's best hand as Terry Ryan signed some of the worse "veterans" in recent memory of GMs. Hopefully, BS can make a few good trades this year and send the Twins to yet another playoff appearance.