After securing all of their players to a 2019 contract, the twins still only have $93 million guaranteed this season. That’s still $30+ million less than last year. This could mean the twins are preparing to make a run at some free agents. First let’s take a look at the twins final arbitration numbers. They look like this:
Sano $2.65 MM
Buxton $1.75 MM
So what should the twins do with their remaining money? They didn’t spend it on Buxton, Berrios or Sano like many had thought so what’s next for the Twins? Let’s look at some big remaining free agents and if they would be a fit.
OF AJ Pollock: When Pollock can stay healthy he is able to hit anywhere from .280-.300. The thing about his health is that he missed 42% of games since 2014. The upside of 25 homers and .300 average is still too much to overlook. A player like this would be great for any team but is he the right fit for the twins? Projected at 4 years and $60 MM I don’t think he is. The Twins have a trio of Buxton, Kepler and Rosario along with Jake Cave and soon the exciting prospect Alex Kiriloff. With all this young talent ready to play, the Twins should spend their money elsewhere. —– fit with team: low
LHP Dallas Keuchel: The former 2015 Cy Young Award winner has been solid over his 7 seasons with 3.32 ERA, 1.182 WHIP and a 7.42 K/9 since 2013. He is entering free agency for the first time and would be a huge boost to a twins team that looks like it is one piece away. The Twins would be able to easily afford Keuchel with a 3 year $55-$60 million deal. A Berrios, Keuchel, Gibson top 3 would be great so the Twins should make an effort for him. —–fit with team: Great
RP Ottavino, Cody Allen, Kimbrel: The Twins will need to sign at least one more reliever to help out in the back end of the bullpen. Right now I will say there is no way the Twins will land Kimbrel. He isn’t a great fit and the front office isn’t willing to pay 3+ years to a relief pitcher. Ottavino is more likely but likely will be overpaid by a larger market team like the Yankees. That leaves Cody Allen who I believe would be a perfect fit for Minnesota. He is a great bounce back candidate after a 4.70 ERA last season. (His first ERA above 3.00 since 2012.) Allen would be a good 7th-9th inning fit, whatever the twins decide to do to pair with Rogers, Hildenburger and May in the back. Allen could get anywhere from $7-$10 million from the Twins on a one year low risk deal this season. There are other relievers (Oliver Perez, Tony Sipp, Tyler Clippard) who would fit on the same idea as Cody Allen, but Allen is just the pitcher I feel would work out the best.
What I hope the Twins do: Keuchel on a 3 Yr $58 Million deal and Cody Allen on a 1 Yr $8 Million deal. A rotation of Berrios, Keuchel, Gibson with a 7/8/9 inning of May, Rogers and Allen sounds so fun to watch.
Thank you for reading my free agent predictions for 2019 and be sure to go read my other articles. If you enjoy, check back everyday at 12:30 P.M. Central and consider sharing with your friends. If you have any feedback or other opinions feel free to let me know, I’m always open to discuss.