Jeff Curry-US PRESSWIRE
Twins ink southpaw reliever to shore up bullpen.
The mock Winter Meetings have been extraordinarily active for the Twins going into day two. There have been trade discussions involving Justin Morneau, Glen Perkins, Ryan Doumit, and Josh Wilingham, although certain players are more tempting to deal than others based off what could be sent to Minnesota in return.
There are also a number of free agent offers on the table, but the first player to accept our offer is veteran left-handed reliever Will Ohman. Ohman has accepted a one-year, $1 million dollars.
Ohman had a rough year in 2012, with his strikeout rates being cut in half and being quite unlucky in terms of stranding base runners (57% strand rate). His command was a career best, walking just 4.4% of opposing batters, and his batting average on balls in play was an unsustainably low .207, but it was certainly an odd year for him all around. He played for the White Sox until mid-summer, was designated for assignment (some believe because his performance against the Twins was the last straw), and in the final part of the year he pitched in triple-A for the Reds.
Interim GM Jesse Lund believes Ohman is a decent buy-low candidate for the Twins, who are in need of bullpen help.
"We felt that some things didn't go Will's way last season," said Lund in just his second day on the job. "Rick [Anderson] will work with him on smoothing a few things out, but there's an expectation that he'll be one of our two primary left-handers out of the bullpen, along with Brian [Duensing]. Tyler Roberson is capable of being a strikeout threat as a reliever, but we don't want to force him into a situation where he'll need to pitch 50 innings this year. With Will in the mix it takes the pressure off just a bit, but we think this creates a good balance."
Ohman joins Glen Perkins, Jared Burton, Casey Fien, and Brian Duensing as pitchers with spots in the bullpen which are more or less locked up. Lund commented that the Twins are still eyeing at least one more free agent reliever.