Already half way through June it isn’t too early to speculate about the trade deadline. Where the Twins are in the standings from here on out will dictate what move, if any, they make.
The Twins have been competitive yet have lost more often since the series with Kansas City. Surviving the month so far, they sit in second place in the AL Central only 3.5 games behind Kansas City. The competitive four games against St. Louis was no let down. They went toe to toe with the best team in baseball and came away with a split. Quality starts and clutch hitting are why the Twins are still in the race this far into the season.
But what happens if the Twins are in third or second place come the trade deadline? Are the Twins buying to push for the playoffs or are they selling to get a few more pieces to next years puzzle?
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Well, it could just turn out that the Twins will do neither.
I believe that the Twins should carefully consider trading for a big bat at the trade deadline. The key will be not to give up a top prospect for it.
The Twins won’t be able to win this division without a “true” Designated Hitter. Jim Thome was the last example of that.
Now I’m not saying they don’t have one now in Kennys Vargas or even Oswaldo Arcia, but they have not produced so far. Vargas will need to hit for a higher average and pound more baseballs into the plaza in right field in order to be a good DH. The walk off home run against the Cardinals was fun to watch and might be what he needs to get back on track.
Having seen Arcia this year and last year I have a hard time seeing him playing the outfield often. Think Delmon Young. Strong arm yet average at best on defense. If Arcia cut down on the strikeouts he’d be a good DH. He crushes the ball most of time when he makes contact. After his injury, Arica has been in Rochester with a slash of .194/.243/.323. All three of those need to be much higher, especially slugging percentage, in order to DH.
Vargas has it easy, he is already on the active roster. Arcia is clearly not and has been passed by multiple guys on the outfield depth chart.
I would like to see on of these two step up, setting up a scenario where the Twins don’t need to trade for a big bat. However, if both Vargas and Arcia fail then the Twins should strongly consider going out and finding one. Who that is I’m not sure yet, but the possibility exists.