Twins Free Agent Rumors: Punto, Saltalamacchia, Kazmir, Santana, Nathan, Arroyo, Pierzynski, Pelfrey

Ed Zurga

Here's what's up on the free agent market regarding Twins direct rumors, former Twins news tidbits, and players somehow connected to the Twins. TWINS!

The free agent landscape is like Christmas morning for off-season junkies. Everyday. Let's see what we've taken out from under the tree over the last day or so, shall we?

  • Nick Punto has signed with the Athletics, Punto will be entering his age-36 season and has been signed to a one-year deal worth $2.75 million with a vesting option (partially based on days spent on the disabled list) for 2015, also worth $2.75 million. The buyout for the second season is $250,000, so really the second year of this deal is worth $2.5 million. This comes just hours after Punto thought Gardy wanted him to play catcher. Punto posted a career-best line of .278/.388/.421 in 2011, the season following his departure from Minnesota, but has hit just .242/.326/.311 since.
  • Although the Twins expressed interest in catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia just two days ago, it was so long ago and we're so deep into free agency that the market for him has been quiet, apparently. I have to believe he'd rather play where he'll continue to have a chance to win, meaning he'd probably turn down more money to stay in Boston, but if he ends up in a situation where he just needs to sign somewhere for a year I'd be all for it.
  • Scott Kazmir is getting interest from teams across the league. When you're everybody's favorite under-the-radar gem on the free agent starting pitcher market, you're no longer under-the-radar. On the other side, a lot of people will like him but nobody is going to ridiculously overbid for his services. I have to believe that money will play less of a role in where he signs compared to whether he wants to pitch in one place over the others.
  • Ervin Santana's agents want five years and $112 million. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA...
  • The Tigers are interested in Joe NathanRemember how Gardy took it when Hunter signed with Detroit last winter, almost a year ago to the day? I can't imagine this going over any better.
  • As Bryz noted earlier today, the Twins are "serious" about Bronson Arroyo. It's not ideal but it's certainly not a bad direction for the Twins to go, provided the money and the years are right. Personally I'm hoping the deal isn't for more than two years guaranteed.
  • Along with Saltalamacchia, the Twins really are interested in bringing back A.J. Pierzynski for an encore performance with the club. How much satisfaction would A.J. get from replacing the guy who replaced him? While he certainly rubs people the wrong way, a vast majority of the time (his stint in San Francisco excepted) that has everything to do with the opposing team and nothing to do with his own. On a one-year deal it's not a bad way to go, and you're guaranteed the Twins would be all that much more interesting for it.
  • Boras is already overselling Mike Pelfrey, who apparently has a good deal of interest from a number of teams around baseball. He already has at least one multi-year offer in hand, allegedly. The Twins are, apparently, in touch. I'm not opposed to re-signing Pelfrey for another one-year deal, but if the team already plans on bringing in Arroyo then I'm hoping the aim is a little higher for the next starter on the list.
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