Going into the 2018-19 offseason, the Twins and their fans knew the bullpen was probably the area that needed the most improvement. So far all that has been done is the addition of RHP Blake Parker and also moving RHP Fernando Romero to a bullpen role. With so many alarms like Craig Kimbrel, Cody Allen, Adam Ottavino, David Robertson etc. why haven’t the Twins added some elite bullpen arms?
There are not a ton of excuses with a window for the playoffs seemingly wide open, but maybe one is that the Twins feel their bullpen is already good. I wrote about this in my bold predictions post. The Twins have an elite lefts in Taylor Rogers, along with a couple solid righties in May and Parker. After that it gets interesting. Both Trevor Hildenberger and Addison Reed have proven they can pitch extremely well and Fernando Romero has the potential to be a stellar bullpen arm. That’s six bullpen arms that could all perform well and the seventh spot will be a competition unless there is a surprise signing.
Another reason for the lack of signing could be that the Twins don’t feel they are ready to be competitive in 2019. I certainly hope this isn’t the truth but it isn’t completely unlikely seeing as how the Twins have not targeted any high end players and the GM said acquiring those players is for when you are in the drivers seat. The Twins have a wide open division with an Indians team that got worse. If the Twins are waiting another year to make that push the fans deserve to be a little ticked off.
Although the bullpen may have significant potential, there is a lot of downside to this squad as it is right now. Can Trevor May perform for a full season? Was Hildy’s second half who he truly is? Can Romero perform as a reliever? Has Addison Reed hit a brick wall? There are as many questions to whether this bullpen can succeed as there are for reasons as to why they will. It really comes down to whether the players can live up to the potential that is definitely there.
I think the Twins bullpen will be able to perform. Adding new pitching coaches Wes Johnson and Jeremy Hefner was part of the new younger era of the Twins. They have brought new analytical strategies and were a big part of bringing on starter Martin Perez. The twins also may not be done adding assets and Kimbrel is still on the market.
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