Heading into next season, the Minnesota Twins are going to have to stabilize their bullpen. So, let’s take a look at what it could look like in 2018.
After covering the 2018 batting lineup and starting rotation, we move on to the bullpen. In 2017, the Minnesota Twins bullpen was tied for 20th in the MLB with a 4.40 ERA, which was an improvement from the 4.63 ERA in 2016. That being said, the bullpen was a revolving door of sorts as the Twins tried to stabilize the pen throughout the season.
By season’s end, they were able to find enough consistency to stay in the playoff hunt and ultimately, win the second wild-card berth. Thanks in large part to young relievers Trevor Hildenberger and Alan Busenitz stepping up and playing major roles in the backend of the Twins bullpen down the stretch. Not to mention, veteran Matt Belisle turned in an outstanding second half, replacing Brandon Kintzler as the closer.
Even so, the Twins bullpen needs some help in the pen in order to become a legitimate World Series contender, not just a playoff contender. Primarily, they have to find their closer of the future. While Hildenberger is an intriguing candidate within the organization, they may be better off finding someone outside the organization and allow Hildenberger to settle into a full-time setup role next season. They could also look for another setup man or middle reliever in a deep free agent class.
Yet, there are some promising young arms within the organization that could play huge roles in 2018. Of course, Hildenberger and Busenitz, but also, Jonn Curtiss, Gabriel Moya and possibly, power arm J.T. Chargois could play large roles in 2018. Nevertheless, adding quality veteran relievers to a promising young group is going to be a priority this offseason as the Twins look to have a plethora of quality options in the pen next season.
With that, let’s take a gander at what the Twins bullpen could look like at the start of the 2018 season.