MLB Trade Deadline: Inactivity Resumes Status Quo for the Minnesota Twins
As Minnesota Twins fans eagerly checked Twitter to see if general manager Terry Ryan would make a move at the Major League Baseball trade deadline, one had to wonder what would happen if this scene was set in the film Major League II.
In the film, the Cleveland Indians acquire a player from Japan by the name of Isuro "Kamakasi" Tanaka, who constantly questions Pedro Cerrano's manhood by repeatedly screaming at him "You have no marbles!"
Mr. Tanaka may have a role waiting for him in the Twins' organization after Tuesday, where Ryan failed to make a move to bolster his incredibly weak farm system.
In all honesty, nobody should be surprised by Ryan pumping the breaks. However, this trade deadline has a much different feel for the franchise because instead of adding a key piece (which Ryan had hesitated to do over his previous tenure as GM), the Twins almost needed to make a deal to make the future brighter.
It takes two to tango, but Ryan had to have a sense of urgency after seeing a team continuing a downward spiral since the Twins were swept by the New York Yankees in the 2010 American League Divisional Series.
The Twins probably wanted to hold onto Josh Willingham, who is in the first year of his three-year deal. They probably didn't get a package good enough to ship Justin Morneau (who has one year left after 2012) either. Those scenarios are understandable.
However, with the Twins reluctant to deal Denard Span, the Twins continued a trend that was stated by Joe Christensen in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune on Tuesday morning: The Twins never sell high.
Span is having a great year for the Twins in the leadoff spot. He's ranking toward the top of many categories among American League leadoff hitters (outside of power numbers), but he also had several years under the Twins' control.
But with the emergence of Ben Revere and the opportunity for clearing a spot to give more major league at-bats to prospect Chris Parmelee, it might have been best to ship Span for some help in the Twins' awful pitching rotation.
Pitching has been the one thing that has held this team back this season and instead of learning from the mistakes of former general manager Bill Smith, Ryan decided to hold back and hope for better value during the offseason (or worse, not at all).
It's a mistake that has cost the Twins in previous years, and will continue to do so until Ryan can find some assets and turn them into players who can help the team in the future.
Meanwhile, Smith takes a lot of heat from Twins fans for running the team into the ground...but at least he took a risk. That's what Ryan needed to do this year by following the Philadelphia Phillies, Chicago Cubs and Houston Astros lead by stripping down to the studs and building toward the future.
Perhaps Ryan didn't see anything he liked, but he needed to do something. Of course, with Target Field continuing to rank 12th in attendance (at 88.7 percent capacity), maybe the Twins didn't feel any pressure to make a move with their pocket books.
Either way, the Twins train to a quick turnaround has just left the station. Twins fans now need to hope that the conductor knows what he's doing.
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