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Twins Avoid Arbitration with Alexi Casilla, Five Players Remain

Cross another one off the list.

Earlier this winter the Twins avoided arbitration with Pat Neshek and Jason Repko by inking them to one-year deals. They've now done the same with Alexi Casilla, the man who will be the team's starting shortstop in 2011.

Last season, Casilla made $437,500 in his final pre-arbitration year. He almost doubles his salary by signing for $865,000 this year. Earlier this off-season we estimated his salary would be $800,000.

This will be a big season for Casilla. Prior to Opening Day last year, there were times where it wasn't clear if he had a place on this team because he was out of options and his performance had been streaky and disappointing. But this year, circumstances have shined on Casilla, and he'll be one half of a middle infield tandem whose production is a big question mark.

There isn't a lot of infield depth in Minnesota this season. Godspeed, Alexi Casilla, and here's hoping you're the best number nine hitter in the league.

Matt Capps, Francisco Liriano, Glen Perkins, Kevin Slowey and Delmon Young are the five remaining arbitration eligibles for the Twins. Arbitration figues will be exchanged on January 18 (Tuesday), with hearings taking place between February 1 and 21. Teams and players can continue to negotiate until the day of the hearing, so the Twins still have time to settle their cases.