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View from the Other Side: Talking Stroman/Giles Trade Rumors with Twinkie Town

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Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim v Toronto Blue Jays Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images

With the Marcus Stroman/Ken Giles trade rumors flying around, TJ Gorsegner from Twinkie Town and I have exchanged some questions to see what kind of deal the Blue Jays might get if they were to trade with the Twins.

I’m not 100% sure there is a match on Stroman with the Twins. My feeling is that the Jays would want 2 starting pitcher prospects who would be MLB ready by 2021 at the latest, at a starting point. For Giles, well starting pitching again would be the ask, but we couldn’t hope for as much in return as we’d get for Marcus.

Here is TJ’s answers.

If the Twins were going after Marcus Stroman, what would you expect them to offer? Are there any untouchable prospects?

The two untouchables in the Twins system are probably Royce Lewis and Alex Kirilloff. Some people might add a couple of interesting pitching prospects, Jordan Balazovic and Brusdar Graterol to that list. To get Stroman, we’ll have to come strong though, and I would probably put one of those two into the deal as an anchor. Add someone a little closer to MLB ready like Stephen Gonsalves, Fernando Romero, or maybe even Kohl Stewart, and perhaps even a Brent Rooker or Luke Raley (OF/1B slugger) to the deal if needed.

Same question as above but with Ken Giles name?

For Giles, I would say that Balazovic and Graterol probably wouldn’t be touchable, but just about anyone else in the system is. Perhaps Griffin Jax would be a good fit. He’s got a military commitment, but is on a World-Class Athlete exemption, and has been tearing up the minors since he got back. Jorge Alcala is a little more highly-rated, but could also be in play, especially in a bidding war situation. If they prefer to go younger, on the position player side we have Wander Javier, who is a really nice shortstop at Low-A, but is blocked a bit in the system.

If you were to land Marcus, where would he slot in your rotation?

Right now, probably third, depending on how Jake Odorizzi’s second half goes, he could end up second, or even as high as the top in a playoff rotation. Jose Berrios is our ace-of-the-future, and probably our number two guy today in a playoff scenario. Jake Odorizzi, as I mentioned, is having a career year. He suffered a blister and missed his last start before the break, but should be back. He has regressed a little lately, but if the rest helps, he may still be the lights-out weapon we have seen in the first half. Martin Perez and Michael Pineda have both been more-than-serviceable for the back of the rotation, but neither is a guy you would hesitate to push down for a pitcher like Stroman.

I’m taking it for granted that starting pitcher and closer are the Twins main two wants, but are they interested in anything else? We do have a shortstop and a first baseman going cheap.

A starter is need #2 for sure. A high leverage reliever is absolutely need #1A and #1B. Behind leftie Taylor Rogers, the Twins ‘pen gets shaky quickly. Blake Parker is the only other guy most people have heard of, and he’s having a rough year. Getting a couple shut down guys, especially a righty, would be huge. The Twins offense is pretty stacked this year, so its hard to see where to upgrade on the position player side. Shortstop is well-covered for the near future with the red-hot Jorge Polanco, who just signed a really fair contract extension this offseason. Behind him, the Twins have a trio of solid utilitymen--Marwin Gonzales, Ehire Adrianza, and rookie sensation Luis Arreaz. At first, C.J. Cron should have been an all-star, and made it to the finals of the starter vote. Behind him isn’t a lot of official depth, but Gonzalez, Adrianza, and both Mitch Garver and Willians Astudillo are all capable of filling in.

I’m expecting the Blue Jays are looking for pitching prospects who will be ready to join the major league rotation in the next two years. Do the Twins have any pitchers they would be willing to ship to Canada?

Kohl Stewart would probably be interesting. He was a first round pick a few years ago who has been the “Emergency Starter” for the Twins this season, bouncing up and down, but mostly at Triple-A. He had some development issues, primarily with control, but has looked really good the last couple years, and has great upside. Otherwise, the usual suspects apply. Leftie Stephen Gonsalves has battled injuries, while Fernando Romero is also nearly MLB ready. He’s been converted to a reliever this season, and struggled a bit in the majors, but the Twins never made it sound like that move to the pen was supposed to be permanent. Down a step, you get Jorge Alcala and Griffin Jax, who are both a bit more interesting. The guy the Jays should ask about though is Lewis Thorpe. The Aussie just made his MLB debut in a cup of coffee with the Twins, and pitched well. He’s got the stuff to be really good for awhile.

Thanks TJ.