The MLB trade deadline is quickly approaching and the Minnesota Twins are in thick of the playoff picture. Is now the time they should make a trade?
The MLB trade deadline is quickly approaching and the Minnesota Twins are in thick of the playoff picture. The Twins are a half a game ahead of the Indians and sitting atop the of the American League Central division.
It seems like it would be the time to make a push for the World Series and make a blockbuster trade to do so. However, there are three reasons why the Twins shouldn’t make a blockbuster trade.
Minnesota Twins Reason No. 1: Position in the standings
The Twins have suffered injuries to several key players including most of their starting rotation and still hold the third-best record in the AL. The ability to of the Twins to maintain their standing in the AL with all of the injuries they’ve suffered speaks to the team’s depth.
If they’re winning at this rate whilst playing under-manned, it affords the Twins to stand pat and play with what they have. No doubt, Derrick Falvey and Thad Levine feel confident in the roster as it stands.
Minnesota Twins Pitching Strengths
The Twins went out in the offseason and added starting pitchers Kenta Maeda, Rich Hill, and Homer Bailey. They also added Tyler Clippard to the bullpen. These moves have been key for the Twins’ success this season. They haven’t received a return on their investment in Hill or Bailey yet but when they both become available they will have a deep starting pitching stable.
Tyler Clippard is the definition of Major League journeyman. The Twins are his tenth team and he’s off to arguably the best start this season. Clippard has been thoroughly dominating racking up 14 strikeouts in 13 innings. Maeda is off to the best start of his career since leaving the Japan Central League four years ago.
As pleased as the Twins must be with Maeda and Clippard, Randy Dobnak is stealing the show. I’m not saying he’s a better pitcher than Maeda, not at all. However, Dobnak’s well-known story of going from being an Uber driver to the major leagues nearly overnight, it’s quite amazing.
I’ll mention again that all of what they’ve accomplished so far has been mostly built upon backup players being able to come in and get the job done. The one area that the Twins have suffered in has been, surprisingly, hitting.
They have been without a slugger in Josh Donaldson for most of the season. Byron Buxton has missed 10 games already as well and was just heating up before he got injured. Luis Arraez has missed nearly a third of the season to this point with a knee injury. Finally, Mitch Garver has missed a total of 10 games as well.
Even with all the injuries to key batters they have managed to creep back up into the top 10 in OPS and runs scored. The Twins seem confident that they will be getting Buxton, Garver, and Donaldson back soon which should boost the already solid lineup.
In addition to the hitters coming back, they should eventually see Bailey and Hill back from injury. Michael Pineda will also be back soon from his 60-game suspension for using a banned diuretic. Pindeda was a key in the rotation in 2019.
If Bailey, Hill, and Jake Odorizzi are healthy and with Pineda back the Twins would go from relying on bullpen games to deciding which two starters might be sent tot he bullpen. The bottom line is the Twins have depth. and that several players should be back soon. The Twins may make some small moves, but they may be looking internally for the second-half boost.