Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The Twins Need Lee...or Somebody

The Twins are a good team. They have the kind of experience and smarts to again win their division...but if they do so as they stand now, it will be by the skin of their teeth. And that's the way the Twins have won the division so many times in the past decade. But one of these years, they will not be so lucky and just being good enough will not be...well...good enough. The Tigers have some strength and the White Sox are always a wild card. But even if the Twins get it done and win the division, as they sit now as a team, they will still lose in the playoffs and will not get to the World Series.

Their problem really is their starting rotation. They have two good starters, Pavano and Liriano. Pavano has been great and has a 3.53/1 strikeout to walk ratio despite only striking out five batters per nine innings. In other words, he doesn't allow cheap base runners. That can be said of the entire Twins rotation except for Nick Blackburn. They don't walk anybody. But only Liriano has the stuff to make use of that special talent. His 9.7 K/9 ratio is fantastic as is his 4 to 1 ratio of strikeouts to walks. Despite his loss to the Tigers when most of the runs scored in the first inning last night, he's probably their best pitcher. Slowey has his moments and keeps you in the game. The same can be said for Baker. But Slowey and Baker both have trouble keeping the ball in the ballpark and both have 1.4 homers for every nine innings they pitch. They are good, but not great. Blackburn has simply been awful and that is the rub.

If you could bring in Lee for the stretch or another big time starter, that would give the Twins the depth in the rotation they need and also give them three good options for every playoff game. If they don't make such a move, it's hard to see this year being much different than any other year IF they can squeak by and win the division.

1 comment:

Josh Borenstein said...

Pavano has been sensational, but he's probably due for a correction. Baker appears to be a 2nd half pitcher. I thought Slowey would break out after 2008, but it hasn't happened yet, and it doesn't look like it will.