By trading Denard Span and Ben Revere over the winter, the Minnesota Twins left their cupboard fairly bare in terms of prospective center fielders. Aaron Hicks earned the Opening Day nod with a strong spring, but he struggled early in the season and is now on the 15-day disabled list with a left hamstring issue. Could a player who has spent his entire career in the American League Central, but has battled injury issues over the last few years, be the answer to their problems?
Grady Sizemore was once considered one of the top young stars in all of baseball, as he put together four straight seasons (2005-2008) with at least 22 home runs and 22 stolen bases, including two seasons with over 30 steals (2007 and 2008) and one 30-30 campaign (33 home runs and 38 stolen bases) in 2008 during his age-26 season. But knee issues limited him to just 104 total games in 2010 and 2011, then he missed all of last season after undergoing back surgery and added microfracture surgery on his right knee last September for good measure.
A few teams have been rumored to have some interest in Sizemore, including the New York Mets and New York Yankees. But the most recent speculation, from Nick Camino of WTAM 1100 in Cleveland, suggests the Twins have interest. As he gets closer to a possible return, more teams may be attached to Sizemore based on his name recognition alone.
Since he has played just 210 games over the last four seasons, it’s easy to forget that Sizemore will still turn just 31 years old in August. He has recently resumed baseball activities, which is obviously a good sign for an eventual return this season, but it may still be awhile before Sizemore is ready for game action. In any case, he will certainly have to prove his health via a private workout with any team that has enough interest to warrant a closer look.
Signing Sizemore would be a very low-risk move, since he is not in a position to make significant demands financially. But it’s anyone’s guess if he can become a viable contributor again, and I don’t think he will be discernibly better than anyone the Twins already have.
Brad Berreman is a contributing writer at Rant Sports.com. Follow him on Twitter @bradberreman24.