Monday, July 31, 2006

Kyle Lohse Gone; More things Afoot?

With just a few hours left until the trading deadline, the Twins have unloaded malcontent Kyle Lohse onto the Cincinnati Reds. Kyle has been inconsistent, to put it nicely, over the past 2 or 3 years, and wasn't getting along well with Gardenhire or the rest of the managing staff.

He's got good stuff, but mentally, he was not always there, and the Twins had tried just about everything they could think of to get him on track.

In return, the Twins picked up minor league pitching prospect Zack Ward. He's 22, and has had great success at the single A level.

I can't help wonder if this isn't part of a bigger plan. The Twins are rather flush with pitchers and pitching prospects. They have the two best left hander starters in the game, they have the lowest bullpen ERA in the game, and a closer who might be amongst the Save leaders in the league again this year had it not been for the Twins horrific start to the season.

So why another prospect? The rumor mill is churning still with Soriano rumors, and the Nationals might be gettinga little antsy. They were looking two good prospects in a trade, and so for they haven't gotten it.

The Twins have great pitching prospects--they think so much of Matt Garza and Kevin Slowey that they were considered untouchable in trade discussions. So perhaps, the Twins thought picking up another prospect like Zack Ward and packaging him one of the the Twins "touchable" minor leaguers (Boof?) and oh, let's say Shannon Stewart, would give them a shot on Soriano. Maybe it will.

Just a few hours left to find out. But as much as I was down on Soriano becoming a White Sock, he would bring some desperately needed power to the Twins lineup. The Twins outfield consists of players who are either too young to be relied upon (Tyner, Rabe, Kubel), or veterans prone to injuries (Rondell White, Shannon Stewart, Torii Hunter). 2/3rds of those veterans haven't been hitting the ball anywhere near well, either.

But what the hell, let's make the prediction official:

Twins will give up Zack Ward, Boof Bonser (sorry, Boof!) & (hopefully) Shannon Stewart for the right to rent Soriano for the rest of the season.

No comments: