Are the Twins Closing In On Signing Mike Pelfrey?

Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sport

Something is stirring behind the scenes. It could be the signing of a familiar face.

As rumors circulated earlier this afternoon that Matt Garza could sign within 48 hours, the Twins were positioned - at least by the media - to be one of the two or three "most interested" clubs. And that was exciting news, because if there is any pitcher on the market that every team in baseball would like in its rotation it's Garza. If you hang out here often, you've seen me write this before: he's the best combination of youth and talent on the market.

Earlier this afternoon, though, LEN III decided to rain on our optimism parade with news on Mike Pelfrey.

The Twins, according to a source, met with Scott Boras, Mike Pelfrey's agent, on Tuesday night. Word is that the sides made progress on a deal. And there are some rumblings that the Twins might make some sort of announcement as early as today.

What's known is that the Twins made a two-year, $10 million offer to Pelfrey. If progress has been made since then the Twins must have increased their offer.

Almost minutes later, during Scott Boras Theatre:

The interest is very real, but I remain skeptical that any multi-year free agent offer to a pitcher not named Garza is a good idea. While the addition of Pelfrey, or Bronson Arroyo for that matter, would likely grant the Twins a better rotation in 2014, making a similar claim for 2015 is dubious.

As a result, hearing news that the Twins may have possibly increased the money on an already ill-advised two-year offer is only bad news. Pelfrey, for his inconsistency and his inability to pitch to his potential, and Arroyo, for his age, are not bridges to the future - they are stop-gap pitchers, perfectly suited for a one-year proposition.

For a team that is not built to win now, making a move that trades success today for good chances of regression in just one year's time seems like a waste of resources.


Judging contracts in the aggregate, or looking at the whole at the end of the deal, is a fine way to evaluate whether or not the player was worth the money he was given. But the likelihood of a player making a positive impact on the field, year-by-year, is another matter. And in no way am I comfortable seeing the Twins give multiple years to either Arroyo or Pelfrey.

I see an issue on two fronts. I see a front office that is desperate to put a better product on the field, and I see two targets who are insisting on multi-year contracts while the Twins are no longer in a good position to offer one. While the additions of Ricky Nolasco and Phil Hughes are massive in terms of personnel and dollars, they're also moves that are just as focused on winning three and four years down the line as they are on winning in 2014.

You absolutely cannot say the same thing about a signing of Pelfrey or Arroyo that takes you beyond one season. For a team that is not built to win now, making a move that trades success today for good chances of regression in just one year's time seems like a waste of resources. Most importantly: it's not about the money. It's about the performances you can expect, and just as critically, the roster spot.

We'll see what transpires. But if either Pelfrey or Arroyo are signed to multi-year contracts by the Twins, it's going to be entertaining to watch me try to find something good about those additional years.

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