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As the Twins 2009 season came to an end just last night, it is likely that the Twins front office will nearly immediately turn their attention to the 2010 season. There are a ton of decisions that GM Bill Smith and his staff need to make this offseason. In conjunction with TwinsCentric.com and its Offseason GM Handbook, we are look at a series of What Would YOU Do blog entries. We have considered what to do with Orlando Cabrera and with Joe Nathan. Today, I thought it would be appropriate to have a discussion on what the Twins should do as it relates to starting pitcher Carl Pavano.
Pavano came to the Twins in early August after the Twins placed a waiver claim on him and the Twins and Indians were able to agree to a Player to be Named Later (that would become Yohan Pino). At the time, he was 9-8 with a 5.37 ERA in 21 starts for Cleveland. He provided that Twins something that they needed at that time, a veteran starter that they knew could pitch every fifth day. To say that Pavano performed to expectations may be an understatement. In 12 starts for the Twins, he went 5-4 with a 4.64 ERA. Of his 12 starts, he went seven innings in five of them, and at least six innings in nine of those games. Seven of the 12 starts were classified as quality starts. He fit in well with the Twins. He was willing to pitch on short rest late in the season. He saved his best stuff for his Game 3 start against the Yankees.
He isn’t overpowering. But when he is on, he hits spots and gets a lot of movement on his pitches. He was second in the league in fewest walks per nine innings. He is a solid, veteran pitcher, and with concerns after Scott Baker, Nick Blackburn and Kevin Slowey going into next year, the team will want a veteran around.
Many (myself included) believe that the Twins biggest need may be a top of the line starting pitcher, a real ace. Carl Pavano is not that. He is a #3 or #4 type of pitcher.
Pavano will turn 34 years old in January, so he is far from old. He just missed throwing 200 innings by 2/3 of an inning. However, he made 33 starts this year. It was the first time he had made more than 17 starts since 2004. He had made 31 and 32 started in 2003 and 2004 for Florida.
Pavano signed a 1 year, $1.5 million contract, with incentives, with Cleveland. He is likely to get a substantial raise.
I think there is a general feeling among Twins fans that the team should consider bringing Pavano back. But the caveat seems to always be the same, “if the dollars and the years make sense.”
So what do you think? First, should the Twins attempt to bring back Carl Pavano back in 2010? If so, what makes sense? How many years, and how many dollars would you offer? What would your Twins starting day rotation look like? If you would like to share your thoughts, please click here.
This is another of many, many decisions that the Twins General Manager Bill Smith will have to make now that the Twins playoff run is complete. John Bonnes (Twins Geek), Parker Hageman (Over the Baggy), Nick Nelson (Nick’s Twins blog) and myself have put together the TwinsCentric Offseason GM Handbook. In its pages, we will put the reader in the role of Twins GM. The four of us will act as advisers. We will provide you with 137 pages worth of information to help you work through your offseason. We discuss the Twins internal free agents, look at the 40 man roster and options to be added, possible trade targets and free agent options. We will review the Joe Mauer contract situation, the #2 spot in the order, and all of the Twins potential arbitration scenarios. Finally, we will each present you with a blueprint, our own recommendation of eight to ten ideas to improve the Twins in 2010. Darren “Doogie” Wolfson wrote the foreword for us. If you are at all interested in this, be sure to go to www.TwinsCentric.com where you can purchase an electronic book (all 137 pages) for just $9.95. If you’re even just a little bit intrigued, still check out that web site where you can also receive a Free Sample of approximately 1/3 the book. Of course, if you have any questions or comments, you can e-mail me, or e-mail TwinsCentric@gmail.com.