Ten Eligible Free Agents The Minnesota Twins Would Be Lucky To Sign In 2014
10 Free Agent Eligible Players The Minnesota Twins Would Be Lucky To Have In 2014
The Minnesota Twins will need to make some major moves in the coming offseason to be competitive in the 2014 season.
Though Minnesota’s future is bright with an extremely talented farm system, many of their most promising prospects may not be ready for a call-up until at least 2015. While the Twins could continue to sit and wait until their young stars are ready for the big leagues, they have already wasted the 2013 season on rebuilding and the only thing it has yielded is utter disappointment.
The Twins should be looking to obtain a few veterans, seeing as their roster currently consists of numerous young guys with little postseason experience.
After the loss of Justin Morneau, Joe Mauer remains the only big name veteran on the roster. The Twins would be wise to further balance their roster, particularly in the bullpen.
However, the problems within the Twins depth chart are not limited to the pitching rotation. Widespread improvements need to be made up and down the roster. In addition to a consistent ace, the Twins are in dire need of clutch hitters and golden glove talent in the field.
Whether the Twins actually have a chance (or the payroll) to sign any of these free agency eligible players for the 2014 season is irrelevant. The point is, these highly talented players have the power to turn around any struggling organization and the Twins would be lucky to get any of them on the roster. Cross your fingers, Minnesota.
Robinson Cano is undoubtedly the top free agent going into 2014 and boasts the highest salary by far.
It is unlikely the New York Yankees will opt out of re-signing their franchise star, but that doesn't mean Twins fans can't dream of a day where a Yankee forgoes the pinstripes for a Twinkies uniform. Signing Cano is about the most unlikely scenario for the Twins, but the Twins are in desperate need of a player of his caliber.
A former Twin, Matt Garza's return to Minnesota would be a welcome addition to the struggling bullpen.
Garza has posted an 3.70 ERA with a 9-4 record in the 2013 season. Released by the Chicago Cubs due to injury, Garza was picked up by the Texas Rangers and has performed well for them since. Though Garza's history on the disabled list makes him a slightly risky pick, he remains one of the top free agency eligible pitchers in 2014.
Come on, Matt; Minnesota misses you.
As rumors stir that Mauer may be taken out from behind the plate due to his concussion history, the Twins will be looking for a solid catcher to fill the void left by their All-Star.
Brian McCann would be a perfect choice. The 29-year-old Atlanta Braves catcher boasts a .477 slugging percentage and his power hitting makes him the biggest steal on the market.
The two-time Cy Young Award winner would be an undeniable asset to the Twins next season. With two World Series Rings with the San Francisco Giants, Tim Lincecum would bring unbelievable postseason experience to the bullpen.
Though Lincecum has showed some inconsistency after throwing a no-hitter in July that was followed by some pretty awful starts, he is still considered one of the top pitchers in the league.
Lincecum is not a sure return to the Giants in 2014. The Twins could really benefit from having a pitcher with as much experience as Lincecum and should not rule this one out.
Ervin Santana has been absolutely killing it this season for the Kansas City Royals with a 3.35 ERA and 150 strikeouts.
Though not the player he was back in 2008 when he posted an unbelievable 214 strikeouts for the Los Angeles Angels, Santana's skills would still be an asset to any organization looking to obtain a seasoned ace for their bullpen.
Because when Derek Jeter is a potential free agent, he has to make the list.
Jeter will decide in the fall if he will take a $9.5 million player option or free agency. If Jeter becomes a free agent, organizations everywhere will dream of having the New York Yankees star in their lineup.
Though Jeter's injuries have led him to his worst season yet, the star power he would bring to the Twins would be unreal. Even if he struck out every at bat, Jeter would still fill the seats.
About as unlikely as his teammate Cano, Jeter is not likely to make a move in 2014 which is unfortunate for the Twins who could use a golden glove at shortstop.
The bulky right fielder for the Cincinnati Reds, Shin-Soo Choo, would fill one of the many voids the Twins are attempting to fill in the outfield.
In addition to being a consistent starter in the field, Choo yields a .425 on base percentage. His average isn't one of the top in the league, but Choo would surely be a good pick for the Twins both offensively and defensively.
Jacoby Ellsbury would be another great fit for Minnesota's struggling outfield.
The Boston Red Sox center fielder has experienced some daunting injuries, but this risk may allow for the Twins to sign a star under the radar.
Ellsbury has a total of 241 stolen bases in his seven year career and his speed would be a great addition to the Twins both offensively and defensively. The ability to get on base and quickly move is one the Twins can afford moving forward, though they will still need to find a clutch hitter to finish the job.
The third New York Yankee on the list, Hiroki Kuroda boasts an impressive 2.99 ERA, 136 strikeouts, and an 11-10 record. Kuroda also provides the experience of four postseason appearances.
Though Kuroda is an older free agent at 38, he shows no sign of slowing down. The statistics speak for themselves, and the Twins would be lucky to have a pitcher of Kuroda's caliber in their bullpen.
In 15 years of experience, A.J. Burnett has racked up 2147 strikeouts in 144 wins and 131 losses.
Impressive to maintain a winning record amidst playing for four teams, Burnett has the kind of experience that the Twins desperately need. Burnett is 4-4 in the postseason, including a World Series win for the New York Yankees in 2009.
Currently playing for the Pittsburgh Pirates, Burnett has expressed that this is where he wishes to stay to finish out his career. If the Pirates choose not to honor Burnett's request, the Twins should take advantage of it.