World Series 2019: What the Minnesota Twins can learn from the Nationals and Astros

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ST LOUIS, MISSOURI - OCTOBER 12: Max Scherzer #31 of the Washington Nationals prepares to deliver a pitch during the third inning of game two of the National League Championship Series against the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium on October 12, 2019 in St Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
ST LOUIS, MISSOURI - OCTOBER 12: Max Scherzer #31 of the Washington Nationals prepares to deliver a pitch during the third inning of game two of the National League Championship Series against the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium on October 12, 2019 in St Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images) /
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WASHINGTON, DC – SEPTEMBER 26: Bryce Harper #34 of the Washington Nationals looks around at the crowd following the Nationals 9-3 win over the Miami Marlins at Nationals Park on September 26, 2018 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC – SEPTEMBER 26: Bryce Harper #34 of the Washington Nationals looks around at the crowd following the Nationals 9-3 win over the Miami Marlins at Nationals Park on September 26, 2018 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images) /

It’s OK to make an unpopular decision

One of the biggest talkers this offseason has been whether or not the Twins should trade Eddie Rosario. While there are solid reasons to do it (low on-base percentage, strong chase rate, etc.), there’s a large portion of the fan base who would be upset if they dealt one of the most popular players on the Bomba Squad.

While Houston hasn’t had to make that type of difficult decision (until Gerrit Cole hits free agency this winter), a better example could be how the Nationals handled the Bryce Harper situation last offseason.

As you already know, Harper was the face of the Nationals organization, but they opted to invest money into their pitching staff including fellow homegrown talent Stephen Strasburg. With the price tag for Harper getting too high, the Nationals ultimately decided to roll with Juan Soto instead and allowed Harper to sign with the division-rival Philadelphia Phillies.

The Phillies missed the playoffs and now the Nationals are in the World Series, which isn’t entirely because of Harper. But the Twins should look at this and note that a little bit of backlash by trading Rosario could be worth upgrading their rotation and eventually handing the keys to the lesser-known Alex Kirilloff.

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