Sawchik: Twins’ hitting is great, but their pitching is the real surprise

From Travis Sawchik at FiveThirtyEight on June 21, 2019:

When Derek Falvey, chief baseball officer of the Minnesota Twins, was in the Cleveland Indians’ front office in the early 2010s, he started attending college coaching clinics. He visited events like Pitch-A-Palooza and the coaching boot camp at the Texas Baseball Ranch. He would sit in the back of conference rooms and listen.

“On the pro side, we keep everything tight to the vest. We don’t want to share with the other pro teams — they are competition,” Falvey told FiveThirtyEight. “What was really interesting for me to see is a lot of coaches sharing ideas. … There were guys from very small programs that had to find a way, with very limited budgets, to compete with other D-1 programs.”

Falvey saw amateur coaches using weighted-ball training, high-speed cameras and biomechanics labs in player development before professional clubs ever did. He looked around and thought, “Why couldn’t any of these coaches be in professional or even Major League Baseball?”

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Originally published: June 21, 2019. Last Updated: June 21, 2019.