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Twins Trade Duke Welker Back to Pirates

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What?

USA TODAY Sports

Update, 4:15pm

The Twins will receive 29-year old Kris Johnson from Pittsburgh in return for Welker. Unlike Welker, Johnson is a starter and he's the owner of decent command but doesn't have Welker's ability to miss bats. He'll also take a spot on the 40-man roster, meaning that Minnesota is still looking at four available roster spots.

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A couple of months ago, the Twins finally traded Justin Morneau. The long-time franchise cornerstone was dealt to the Pirates, and in return Pittsburgh would eventually send back to Minnesota one of three players. Before it was officially announced, we knew it was 27-year old flame thrower Duke Welker.

Now, it sounds like both teams have changed their minds.

The most immediate effect of this move is that the Twins gain another spot on their 40-man roster. Tomorrow is the deadline to add players to the 40-man in order to protect them from December's Rule 5 draft, which means roster space was probably at the forefront of the organization's collective mind.

Will Minnesota get anything back from Pittsburgh? Or was the roster spot in November, combined with getting the last few weeks of Morneau's contract off the roster, enough for trading the once great first baseman?

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