Monday, September 7, 2009

A Look ahead to 2010

With the Twins struggles of late and the Detroit Tigers finding their groove I am ready to do something that I was hoping I would not have to do till the playoffs and that is close the book on the 2009 season. The Twins trail the Tigers by 7 games with only 27 games left so it would take an absolute collapse by the Tigers and unbelievable baseball for the Twins to catch them but realistically we all know it is not going to happen. Losing 3 starting pitchers because of injuries and Justin Morneau going into the tank once again was too big of a pill to swallow. So for this purpose I am looking forward to next year and who I expect to be on the opening day roster and the probable payroll going into the season. I will write a little bit about every player. So everyone let me know what you think if you disagree with me or agree with me. You can either leave me a comment in the comment box or send me a email at

  • C- Joe Mauer- I project the Twins will sign Mauer to a 6 year 126 million contract with an option of 25 million for 2016. 2010 salary: 21 million

  • 1b Justin Morneau- I think Justin will come back better next year and be what he has always been for the Twins. 2010 salary: 14 million

  • 2b Alexi Casilla- The second half for Casilla has gotten him his job back at 2nd base as he has hit .208 compared to .180, but that is only have the story as his defense has been much better and I still look for him to hit. 2010 salary: 450,000

  • SS Orlando Cabrera- I project the Twins to sign Cabrera to a 2 year 11 million dollar contract in the offseason. Cabrera has not been the offensive force he was in the first half, but the Twins like the affect he has had on Alexi Casilla and Carlos Gomez and their other options are not real appealing either. 2010 salary: 5.5 million

  • 3b Brendan Harris- I project the Twins to start top prospect Danny Valencia in AAA to start the season so the majority of the time at 3rd will go to Harris who has done a decent job at 3rd this year when the many times Joe Crede has been unavailable. I look for Valencia to be up with the Twins at some point next season, but I look for Harris to be the starter on opening day. 2010 salary: 950,000

  • Left Field: Denard Span- Denard Span has been everything we have been expecting out of him this year hitting .300 stealing 20+ bases and playing phenomenal defense in all 3 outfield spots. 2010 salary: 450,000

  • Center Field: Carlos Gomez- With the Twins decision to keep Gomez up with the Twins all year he will be a super 2 and eligible for arbitration this winter. That being said he remains inconsistant at the plate and his plate discipline is something that he is going to have to work on to be a consistantly good hitter, but his defense continues to be awesome and he just might be the best centerfielder in the major leagues and should continue to get better as he is only 23 years old. 2010 salary: 750,000

  • Right Field: Michael Cuddyer- I admit I was wrong over the winter when I said the Twins should trade Cuddyer as he has had a phenomenal not only at the plate, but also in the field as his arm scares teams from attempting to take the extra base. Even though Cuddyer is 31 years old I would keep him next year and depending on how he does next year picking up his 2011 option. 2010 salary: 8.5 million

  • Designated Hitter: Jason Kubel- Jason Kubel has put together a career year this year and established himself as one of the top dh's in the league and when Joe Mauer or Justin Morneau need a DH day I am ok with putting him in the outfield because we need his bat in lineup every day. The Twins signed him cheaply this winter and if he was available this winter he would get double what the Twins paid him, but I look for him to have another big year next year. 2010 salary: 4.1 million

  • Delmon Young- Delmon Young has really not done much to establish himself as a starter at this level with that being said he has shown how powerful he can be when given a chance. I look for more out of the same out of him next year as they will have a platoon between Young and Carlos Gomez going forward. 2010 salary: 1.4 million

  • Nick Punto- Nick Punto is not a starter and nor should he be and his salary says he should be a starter. However, the Twins signed him to a bad contract last offseason so no team is going to take him so Punto will return to his old role of utility player where he belongs if he is going to be on the team. 2010 salary: 4 million

  • Steve Tolleson- I project Steve Tolleson to beat out Matt Tolbert, Brian Buscher and others for a utility role on the team. I look for Tolleson to play 2nd base, Shortstop and maybe a little bit of outfield. 2010 salary: 390,000

  • Jose Morales- I think it is safe to say that the Mike Redmond era will come to an end at the end of the month and Morales will back up Joe Mauer. Morales has some work to do defensively and he is not as good of a hitter as he is showing right now but I believe he will be a solid backup for the Twins. 2010 salary: 395,000

  • Starting Pitcher: Scott Baker- In the second half Baker has established himself as the ace of the Twins by going 6-0 with a 2.64 era in 10 starts. Baker is living up to the contract that the Twins gave him this spring and will anchor the starting rotation going into Target Field next year. 2010 salary: 3 million

  • Starting Pitcher: Kevin Slowey- Slowey was on pace for a career year before a bone chip in his wrist ended his season prematurely. I look for Slowey to come back next year and be the horse that we know he can be. 2010 salary : 480,000

  • Starting Pitcher: Nick Blackburn- Blackburn had a terrific first half and has struggled in the second half, but he is a solid 3/4 starter who keeps you in the game most games and will be a solid pitcher in 2010. 2010 salary: 480,000

  • Starting Pitcher: Francisco Liriano- I am still a believer in Liriano even though he did nothing to show that he can be The Franchise again. However, he has too much talent to give up on and I look for a bounceback performance in 2010. 2010 salary: 850,000

  • Starting Pitcher: Jeff Manship- I look for Manship to win a tough hard fought battle in Spring Training for the 5th starter job over Brian Duensing and Anthony Swarzak. I think Manship has the highest ceiling of those 3 and will do a terrific job in that role for next season. 2010 salary: 410,000

  • Bullpen: Joe Nathan- Joe Nathan had another very good year for the Twins and will be back anchoring the back of the bullpen for the Twins. 2010 salary: 11.25 million

  • Bullpen: Matt Guerrier- Guerrier has really established himself as a very good setup man for the Twins and I look for him to get a 2 year extention for 6 million with an option for 2012 at 4 million. 2010 salary: 3 million

  • Bullpen: Jose Mijares- Jose Mijares has had his ups and downs with walks and coming to camp out of shape. If he comes to camp in shape next year he will be the top left handed setup guy if not the Twins won't be pleased. 2010 salary: 430,000

  • Bullpen: Jon Rauch- Rauch will be the 7th inning guy for the Twins next year and be a solid contributer to the bullpen. 2010 salary: 2.9 million

  • Bullpen: Jesse Crain- This is where I have trouble because Crain has not had a good year, but he has pulled it together since his demotion to AAA. I look for him to get a paycut this year to stay with the Twins and wouldn't be surprised to see him traded this offseason if he doesn't want to take a paycut. 2010 salary: 1.5 million

  • Bullpen: Boof Bonser- Boof is coming off of shoulder surgery so the Twins will take it easy with Boof and start him in long relief to see how he is coming off the major surgery, but as he becomes more comfortable they will put him in tougher situations. I look for Boof to be a big contributer next year. 2010 Salary: 455,000

  • Bullpen: Brian Duensing- I look for Duensing after losing out to Jeff Manship in the rotation to find a nice niche as the second lefthander in the Twins bullpen next year and be a good spot starter if there is an injury. 2010 salary: 400,000

  • According to my projections I view the Twins parting ways with Mike Redmond, Ron Mahey, and Carl Pavano. I also view the Twins taking their time with Pat Neshek and start him in Fort Myers for the first month or so while it is cold in Minnesota. Those are my picks let me know what you think.

  • 2010 projected Payroll: 87 million dollars- that may be too high and if they need to cut corners it may be replacing Jesse Crain and Orlando Cabrera with Matt Tolbert and Anthony Slama which would get it down to around 80 million which is more what I think the Twins are willing to spend. Let me know what you think.


Unknown said...

Nice read.. yes, if the numbers you projected are right. That is a big increase in payroll from this year at 58M. That should be interesting..

darin617 said...

So what about Perkins?

Travis Aune said...

I look for Perkins to be moved for as good of a prospect they can get for him. I think the bridge has been burned with him and the Twins. The Twins look at him as a troublemaker and will cut ties with him.

Anonymous said...

Not much to look forward to if your opinions are accurate. You fall for the Twins propoganda!

peterb said...

The twins are the richest organization in baseball---why do you fall for this money limitation bit like Seth! We are not a small market team---a mid-market!

Travis Aune said...

look at the revenue we bring in it is at the bottom and if it were not for revenue sharing we would not be able to make it. That being said I think with Target Field opening the Twins should be expected to go up to the 90-100 million dollar range for payroll and if not they should be bashed so no I am not a homer just calling them how i see them.

SethSpeaks said...

PeterB - I have never called the Twins a small market team. I think that is a myth.

That said, the Twins revenues are way down in the list, and even the new stadium will not put them way up the list. It just helps some.