Twins Chief Baseball Officer Derek Falvey: "Pitching is the priority"

Falvey tells Dave Lee what to expect as the trade deadline approaches

The WCCO Morning News with Dave Lee
July 25, 2019 - 11:02 am

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As the MLB trade deadline approaches, Twins fans are very vocal about what they think the team needs in order to make a strong playoff push: pitching, pitching and pitching.  Twins' Chief Baseball Officer Derek Falvey agrees.

RELATED: Cory Hepola "guarantees" the Twins will win the Central. 

Talking to Dave Lee on the WCCO Morning News, Falvey explained that making trades is a bit of a waiting game too, as teams explore possibilities with each other.

"A lot of phone calls, a lot of text messages, a lot of back and forth," said Falvey.  "Sometimes, not always that fruitful, but that's just part of the deal. I think you get used to that over time, but in this game.  I think we've seen over the last couple of trade deadlines. Most of the activity comes really right into the deadline day and I would expect nothing different this year. There haven't been a lot of moving parts just yet."

The tight races for the Wild Card in each league is also slowing down trade activity.  

Falvey explains: "Part of it has to do with the fact that there are a lot of clubs that are really close or within shouting distance of wild card position and part of that, particularly in the National League may lead teams to just give themselves as much time as possible to figure out where they fit in the buyer-seller category. So we'll see where that goes. And I'm fully expecting an exciting next few days."

When asked what the Twins will look for, a starter or a reliever, Falvey said that's not something the team separates. 

"Well, I think for us, we've talked about pitching in general and we kind of bucketed them together.  And we do that because we think we have a lot of good arms with our group. But, we certainly could have some flexibility." 

Falvey also told Dave Lee he's been very happy with the current staff. 

"I feel like the group that we have that's carried us to this point has done a great job. I think our starting rotation, for the most part, they are really healthy and performed among the top ones in the league. I think our bullpen, while in flux recently, we've got some good young arms coming up that really helped us. I think if you look through that Yankee series, the young kid like Cody Stashak coming up making his debut and pitching really well.  What Lewis Thorpe did in the game 1 win, to come in and you back behind the starter.  And then you know ultimately what Devin Smeltzer did for us yesterday, again really stemmed the tide and to pitch the way he did. I think these guys among others in our group are really going to help us in the second half."

Despite how the team has pitched so far, Falvey says, "Could there be external additions for the organization? Sure. But I think a lot of it's to come from our young guys as well."

Dave Lee also asked Falvey about any prospects that could be considered off-limits for a trade.  

"Well, you know, I'm loath to use that term 'off-limits' because you never know what is on the other end of the phone. And I would say that every player in our system, certainly we value quite a bit at different levels. And if the right trade is proposed, you have to listen.  You have to go through it realistically.  We definitely have some top tier prospects who we think that most other teams, unless we were getting longer term control of those players, guys would be around our major league team for an extended period of time, that I don't think we let teams access. But we'll always be in the conversation to determine whether or not it's the right kind of fit."

The Twins are currently hanging on to a two-game lead in the AL Central over Cleveland.  They are in Chicago for a four-game series starting Thursday night against the White Sox.  You can hear each game on WCCO Radio.

Thursday- 7:10pm
Friday- 7:10pm
Saturday: 6:10pm
Sunday: 1:10pm  

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