Nobody is really surprised that the Twins sent Kevin Slowey away. He was often injured and, through no fault of his own, was jerked around by the team. This is a case where both parties have something to gain by splitting up.
For Kevin, it means a fresh start in Colorado. His fly ball rates won't help him, but if he can regain a fraction of the promise he occasionally flashed in Minnesota then the Rockies might have a decent arm. He needs to improve his command and say out of the strike zone a little more, and if he can stay healthy and get back to form on strikeout rates then it's entirely possible he can be a good pitcher.
But the Twins always knew that, and unfortunately it wasn't about being a good pitcher anymore.
Here's what this trade signifies for Minnesota.
- It frees up what Slowey would have made through arbitration this season, roughly $2.7 to $3 million dollars. It's not a small chunk of change considering the resources the team is (or isn't) working with over the winter.
- This takes one more option out of Minnesota's internal starter list. Scott Baker, Francisco Liriano, Carl Pavano and Nick Blackburn remain the top four in all likelihood, but now that fifth spot (barring an addition) is down to Anthony Swarzak, Liam Hendriks (who should begin the year in Rochester) and Brian Duensing (who has been pegged for the bullpen).
- The fact that the Twins are getting nothing more than cash or a player to be named later means that a spot has opened up on the 40-man roster.
Stay tuned to see how the Twins fill that roster spot.