More than any other factor, the organizational culture of the Minnesota Twins is shaped by its reliance on scouting. Where most other major league baseball franchises budget for at least one high-priced free agent every year or two, the Twins overwhelmingly prefer to eschew free agents and instead draft and then develop their own players. When that approach isn't sufficient, the organization has proven to be very resourceful at trading for players who are undervalued by other clubs, but who have received high marks from the Twins' encyclopedic scouting reports that are internally circulated and updated every year. USA Today's Minor League Player of the Year for 2005 was the Twins' Francisco Liriano, who was an unheralded pitcher used by the San Francisco Giants to complete a trade involving higher-profile players three years ago. USA Today's Minor League Player of the Year for 2006 is Matt Garza, the Twins' top draft choice in 2005. This shrewd appraisal of talent is the primary reason why the Twins have become consistent playoff contenders despite retaining one of the lowest payrolls in... More >>>