COMMENTARY | The Minnesota Twins find themselves with a record of 39-53 at the Major League Baseball All-Star break. That's a mark that's good for fourth in the American League Central and 13.5 games behind the first-place Detroit Tigers.
That alone is enough to make the argument that general manager Terry Ryan is going to shop any asset he has at the July 31 trade deadline, but that should be a given considering the shape the roster has been in since the beginning of the season.
Think back to spring training. It was a given in the Twin Cities that the Twins were not going to do much coming off back-to-back seasons in the cellar of the AL Central.
With trades of starters Denard Span and Ben Revere, the Twins couldn't hide that the team was in a period of transition. This was emphasized by Ryan's unwillingness to pay ridiculous prices for middle-of-the-road starting pitching last winter and opted for minor cosmetic moves to keep fans buzzing.
While the Twins were enraging talk-radio warriors at the major league level, other fans understood what was going on deeper in the Twins' organization.
Nobody expected Byron Buxton to light the baseball world on fire in March, but the Twins still had several prospects with a bright future such as Miguel Sano, Eddie Rosario and Oswaldo Arcia. That's without mentioning Aaron Hicks, who won the starting center field job with a strong showing in Fort Myers.
Even the pitching had bright spots despite the major league staff owning the worst starting earned run average in all of baseball. To join Kyle Gibson, the team acquired Alex Meyer and Trevor May to hopefully create a rotation that could go more than five innings once in a while.
The promise was there, even if it wasn't at the major league level. Now, it's time to make room so that promise can grace the green grass at Target Field.
If the Twins decide to deal several pieces, there will be a contingent of fans that will scream injustice and blame the Pohlad family for shedding payroll. The truth is that the beloved players that currently wear the major league uniform are no longer part of the team's future.
It comes back to the Span and Revere trades last winter. A lot of fans did not approve of the team dealing two starting outfielders because they were "important to the team." But they were important parts of a team that had lost 195 games in two seasons. With that reality, how important were they?
That's why dealing a couple chips on the current Twins makes sense. The window of the teams that dominated the AL Central over the 2000s has come and gone, and moves need to be made to allow the next wave of talent to rise to the top of the division once again.
It doesn't mean they will be popular moves. They don't have to be. All the Twins need to do is give the young talent an opportunity to succeed in Minneapolis and the new era of baseball in Minnesota can begin.
Chris Schad is a lifelong Twins follower that has spent a majority of his life cheering the Twins on through the dark '90s and success of five American League Central championships in the 2000s. His work has also been published on Bleacher Report. You can follow him on Twitter @crishad.
- Sports & Recreation
- Minnesota Twins
- American League Central
- Major League Baseball