This year's edition of the All-Ex Twins team had three pretty easy areas, and then one more difficult area. Finding enough bodies not just for the infield but also finding a warm body for the bench infielder was interesting, and let's just say we weren't too far off from putting Cuddyer at second and letting Matt Carson onto the bench.
With that in mind, let me take you through a bunch of names that you probably wish were still on the roster.
|Francisco Liriano||26||161.0||3.02||1.22||9.1||2005 - 2012|
|Matt Garza||24||155.1||3.82||1.24||7.9||2006 - 2007|
|Kyle Lohse||32||198.2||3.35||1.17||5.7||2001 - 2006|
There were years where I was forced to put Lohse on this roster simply for a lack of other options. In this case, I could have gone with Scott Baker or Philip Humber or even Kevin Slowey, but those choices seemed disingenuous. Lohse earned the distinction this time around, because he had a good season. Marquis also had a surprisingly good season, even if he allows way too many base runners. Considering how he pitched with the Twins last season I'm surprised the Padres gave him any kind of opportunity at all.
On the whole, this isn't a bad starting rotation. The two best guys, Liriano and Garza, aren't 200-inning pitchers, but they don't have to be. Dickey and Lohse are right there, and the Twins would kill to have this rotation's top four.
|Joe Nathan||67||64.2||1.39||0.90||10.2||2004 - 2011|
|Grant Balfour||65||62.2||2.59||1.20||10.3||2001 - 2005|
|Jesse Crain||38||36.2||0.74||1.15||11.3||2004 - 2010|
|Jose Mijares||60||49.0||4.22||1.78||9.9||2008 - 2011|
|LaTroy Hawkins||72||70.2||2.93||1.15||7.0||1995 - 2003|
|Craig Breslow||61||59.2||1.81||1.12||5.0||2008 - 2009|
|Pat Neshek||45||40.1||3.35||1.36||6.5||2006 - 2010|
This is a kick-ass bullpen. Seeing Nathan, Balfour and even Crain at the top of this list just shows what kind of talent has come through the Minnesota relief corps over the years, and Hawkins just continues to defy time and possibly physics. He's approaching the status of a living legend, partially because in no way did anybody expect him to pitch through his 20s when he first started with the Twins...much less be pitching and pitching well at 40.
|Garrett Jones (IF/OF)||144||440||15||2||.233||.289||.419||2007|
|Danny Valencia (IF)||52||170||8||0||.304||.335||.553||2010 - 2012|
|Denard Span (OF)||153||662||4||20||.279||.327||.380||2008 - 2012|
|A.J. Pierzynski (C)||134||529||17||1||.272||.297||.425||1998 - 2003|
I know, I know - it's a fake team. But I still tried to construct the best one I could. And I love that Pierzyski is still good enough to be on this team.
|Ben Revere (LF)||88||336||0||22||.305||.338||.352||2010 - 2012|
|Carlos Gomez (CF)||147||590||24||40||.284||.338||.506||2007 - 2009|
|Michael Cuddyer (1B)||130||540||20||10||.331||.389||.530||2001 - 2011|
|David Ortiz (DH)||137||600||30||4||.309||.395||.564||1997 - 2002|
|Wilson Ramos (C)||78||303||16||0||.272||.307||.470||2010|
|Torii Hunter (RF)||144||652||17||3||.304||.334||.465||1997 - 2007|
|J.J. Hardy (SS)||159||644||27||2||.263||.306||.433||2010|
|Alexi Casilla (2B)||62||125||1||9||.214||.268||.295||2006 - 2012|
|Nick Punto (3B)||116||335||2||3||.255||.328||.327||2004 - 2010|