The off season is (almost) here, and the Twins will obviously try to get better. This will mean making multiple moves to ensure the success of the 2020 team. They probably will be in the middle, but today I will show you either end of the spectrum.
The best case scenario
The first move we make in the off season is signing Odorizzi to a 3-year, 51 million dollar deal. This locks in place one key piece of the rotation. We make this move in mid-November, making room for other moves to be made.
Next, we address the issue of our bench. We probably should get one more quality bench player. There were times last year in which we were so desperate that we put Luis Arraez or Ehire Adrianza in the outfield because of injuries. We start targeting Avisail Garcia, a veteran outfielder. We sign him to a 1-year, 5.5 million dollar contract.
Then, we make a move to start addressing the bullpen. We sign Sergio Romo to a 2-year, 7 million dollar contract. Ever since we signed him, our bullpen has looked considerably better. Also, he is the owner of the Twinkie Town Reliever of the Year award for a reason. Not only does he fill a big hole in the bullpen, but he makes everyone around him a better player. That is extremely valuable on a team with many young relievers.
Then, the Twins made a shocking move and sign Gerrit Cole to a 4-year, 132 million dollar mega-contract! The Polhads are not cheap anymore! The Twins, of all people, have signed an ace. It is the best thing to ever happen in MN sports history (well, maybe not). Anyway, the Twins have clogged a major hole in the rotation.
While we were making these moves, there also were some departures. Kyle Gibson signed with the Phillies, Martin Perez signed with the Padres, Jonathan Schoop goes to the Red Sox, and Jason Castro to the A’s.
Then, the Twins sign Michael Pineda to a 2-year, 18 million dollar contract. He will be the fourth starter behind Cole, Berrios, and Odorizzi. Pineda looked pretty darn good towards the end of the season before he was suspended, and we are hoping to get the same thing out of him once he finishes his suspension.
After that, we have 4 steady guys in our rotation (three before Pineda returns). The fourth/fifth man will most likely be found internally instead of externally (Randy Dobnak, Devin Smeltzer, Brusdar Graterol, Lewis Thorpe).
With our little remaining cash, we decide on signing Will Smith (the relief pitcher, not the actor) to a 3-year, 13-million dollar contract to fill a hole in the bullpen. Last year, he was the Giants closer, and he got 34 saves to go with a 2.76 ERA. He will become our primary seventh-inning guy.
Just for review, our arrivals were Gerrit Cole, Avisail Garcia, and Will Smith, and the departures were Kyle Gibson, Martin Perez, Jonathan Schoop, and Jason Castro.
The worst case scenario
Since we are a Minnesota sports team, things will go wrong. In this scenario, I will make everything go wrong.
We lead off the off season with the news that Eddie Rosario was traded to the San Francisco Giants for Madison Bumgarner (ugh) and cash considerations. This is terrible on so many levels. First, you are taking a young, power-hitting outfielder and trading him for a starting pitcher who is basically the lefty version of Kyle Gibson and is in his decline. Second, cash considerations?!? This is basically equivalent to a pack of gum. Already, Twins fans are groaning.
Then, in need of a corner outfielder, we try to go after Marcell Ozuna (what?). They decide to throw him 3 years and 40 million. He considers this for about a week before the Cardinals throw him 5 years and 67 million, which he signs. Out of desperation, we complete the dumbest move in Twins history and sign Brett Gardner to a 3 year, 38 million dollar contract.
Then, the world is informed that Jake Odorizzi has signed with the Chicago White Sox. Our second-best starter signed with a rival team. I mean, it just can’t get any worse, can it?
In dire need of something, they decide to make a push to sign Wade Miley. It works (since no one else wanted him), and they sign him to a 4-year, 36 million dollar deal. One hole covered.
In other news, the Reds have signed the Twins’ top target, Zack Wheeler. The one real plan that the Twins have is gone. It is all falling apart.
Also, Castro, Schoop, Gibson, Pineda, and Perez also left.
Out of desperation, we end up signing Gerardo Parra, of all people. Now everyone will be singing Baby Shark at the top of their lungs whenever he comes up to bat. Ugh.
We also sign Sean Doolittle, of all people, to a 2-year, 7 million dollar contract just because we can’t find anything else to do with our money.
Then, in Spring Training, it is announced that Willians Astudillo collided with Byron Buxton while playing left field, and Astudillo has a concussion, while Buxton has a broken collarbone. Astudillo will miss two weeks, while Buxton will miss about 4 months. Just when you thought we were at rock bottom.
Just for review, our arrivals were Madison Bumgarner, Brett Gardner, Wade Miley, Gerardo Parra, and Sean Doolittle, and our departures were Jake Odorizzi, Jason Castro, Jonathan Schoop, Kyle Gibson, Michael Pineda, and Martin Perez.
Well, that was fun. Hopefully the boy geniuses have a plan, and make the off season a bit more like the first scenario then the second.