The Twins and general manager Terry Ryan have already made it pretty clear that they'll be active on the waiver wire this season, and it's probably fair to speculate that they'll be plenty willing to sign minor league free agents as well.
Terry Ryan was on 1500 ESPN yesterday, and I'm paraphrasing, but one of his points included him doing what he could to get the right combination of players in the system to turn things around. Obviously, the Twins are far from a waiver claim or two and a minor league pickup from turning this train around. They've got to figure out a way to get useful innings out of Francisco Liriano and Nick Blackburn. They need to find some semblance of offense from their infield. There's plenty of work to do and a limited pool of talent to draw from at this point, though that can change quickly with one DFA from another club. Here's a look at a few marginally intriguing names that Ryan could look at.
Blake DeWitt, 2B/3B: The Cubs designated DeWitt, who also has limited experience (24 games) in the outfield, for assignment last week. The 26-year-old is a former first round pick of the Dodgers and owns a respectable enough .257/.324/.380 triple slash line through 1,243 plate appearances. He batted only .138/.133/.172 through 30 plate appearances this year, though, sparking the DFA. DeWitt's not a sexy option. He's not someone you cross your fingers and hope the Twins will claim necessarily. He is, however, a young guy with a reasonable track record as a hitter. The Twins' second basemen have hit .198/.271/.262 as a collective unit, and third base has been worse at .193/.212/.294. With little to no upper-level infield depth outside of Pedro Florimon, DeWitt makes sense on some levels.
Jorge Cantu, 1B/3B: I don't like the fact that I just typed Cantu's name any more than you do, but he's a 30-year-old corner infielder that's only a couple of seasons removed from a two-year stint with the Marlins in which he batted .283/.336/.462 in more than 1,300 plate appearances, and the Twins have a .205/.266/.301 line from their first baseman this year, in addition to the aforementioned futility at third base. Cantu opted out of his deal with the Angels after batting .291/.300/.488 in 90 Triple-A plate appearances. Like DeWitt, he's not a very sexy option, but neither are any of the options the Twins have been sending out to the field to this point.
Zach Braddock, RP: Braddock isn't actually on waivers, he was released by the Brewers recently, and I'll be the first to admit he may very well not be ready to pitch whatsoever. He hasn't thrown since Spring Training for personal issues which the Brewers chose not to disclose. He missed time in 2011 with a sleep disorder, of all things, and also missed time for more "undisclosed matters" last season. You can speculate on depression or any number of psychological conditions, but when on the mound, the 24-year-old lefty has fanned 12 hitters per nine in 224 Triple-A innings. He carried that K-rate to the Majors with a 10.4 K/9 through 51 innings. Control has been an issue, and he may not be ready to pitch at all from a mental standpoint, but I wouldn't mind seeing the Twins take a flier if and when he's ready to go.
Cantu or DeWitt would likely mean the Twins need to stop carrying 13 pitchers, but that can be fixed with something as simple as a DFA of Jeff Gray or Matt Maloney.
Steve Adams also writes for MLBTradeRumors, RotoAuthority, and MLB.com. You can follow him on Twitter: @Adams_Steve