Falvey, Levine to reinforce front office, evaluate staff

Duo, along with Antony, are in Arizona for GM Meetings

November 8th, 2016

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Twins unveiled their new front office at Target Field on Monday, but it led to a quick turnaround, as chief baseball officer Derek Falvey and general manager Thad Levine had a flight to catch to Arizona late Monday for the annual GM Meetings in Scottsdale.

Assistant general manager Rob Antony also joined Falvey and Levine, as he'll remain in the organization and will be counted on to help ease the transition. Antony served as interim GM when longtime GM Terry Ryan was dismissed in July and has helped Falvey and Levine get up to speed on the state of the franchise.

"We're hitting the ground running," Falvey said. "We're looking forward to getting to know more about our internal players and staff as we go. We'll be in Arizona, and we'll really be able to get a good look under the hood."

Falvey said he anticipates the front office will remain intact, but decisions will be made soon regarding the Major League coaching staff. Manager Paul Molitor was at the press conference on Monday, and while he will return in 2017, his coaching staff could look different.

"Paul and I have talked in great detail about his coaches," Falvey said. "We'll formalize that process this week."

Molitor said he plans to continue to plead his case to keep his coaches who have been in limbo since the season ended. But he acknowledged changes could be coming.

"They know from me that it's an urgent matter," Molitor said. "I've talked to our guys and they're trying to be patient and understanding. That'll be one of the first orders of business in the next couple of days."

As for the front office, the plan is to add to it this offseason after owner Jim Pohlad assured Falvey he could build his own department. The Twins will then evaluate everyone after the year to see if any changes need to be made.

"Our first objective will be to add resources and it could be in the form of people, analytics, systems, access to medical information," Levine said. "So I think our first phase will be additive and we'll provide our people with the resources we think you need to succeed. And then we'll evaluate."

Worth noting

• Falvey and Levine are well-versed in analytics, but both cautioned it'll simply be a piece of the puzzle, as scouting is still an important part of evaluating players. Falvey pitched at Trinity College in Hartford, Conn., and spent a summer scouting at the Cape Cod League before joining the Indians' front office.

"It's evidence based," Falvey said. "Not just numbers. It's a marriage of information. That's when you make the best decisions."

• Falvey said he wrote a letter to Ryan after he was hired as his replacement, and the former GM called with advice. Ryan served as Minnesota's GM from 1994-2007 and again from 2011-16. Falvey, though, said there are no concrete plans to add Ryan to the staff right now, but it's something he could explore down the line.

"He was incredibly gracious," Falvey said. "He cares so much about the Twins organization and was so integral to this operation. We talked in great detail and that's just who he is. He shared what he thought went well, what didn't go well and what could be changed."

• Falvey wouldn't commit to an immediate rebuild for the Twins, who have lost at least 90 games in five of the last six years. He'll spend more time analyzing the roster this week at the GM Meetings, but he likes the club's young core.

"I don't think it makes sense to put timetables on teams," Falvey said. "I've seen and been part of teams that have exceeded expectations. So I don't to put restraints on a team. I want to go into the year thinking we'll be a competitive team that will build and get better every day."