The Winter Meetings are here! Today was the first official day and the Twins did... not very much! That’s okay—we don’t want them to make and rash decisions, do we?
There have been plenty of rumors and speculation, though, in addition to moves by other teams. Here’s a rundown of the day for the Twins.
It should be apparent to just about everyone by now that Brian Dozier is the biggest and most-sought trade chip the Twins have, and rumors about a possible deal have been swirling for weeks. The only interested team named thus far has been the Dodgers, although our favorite Heyman said recently that about four or five teams have interest.
Hearing now there are 4-5 teams in on Dozier, who'll be coming to meetings. LA is the 1 known team. Logical to move.— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) December 5, 2016
Dozier is at the Winter Meetings himself, reportedly meeting today with Derek Falvey and Thad Levine, and also Under Armour, who he has a sponsorship deal with. He also made an appearance on MLBN’s Intentional Talk, where the hosts proclaimed he had the best hair in baseball (duh).
Derek Falvey also made his own bright eyed and bushy tailed appearance on MLBN to discuss a Dozier deal.
From the sound of all reports, the new Twins front office leadership isn’t set on trading Dozier by any means, but they are open to it. as Thad Levine told reporters, “We’ve certainly said to other clubs: We knowingly are entering this discussion with the understanding that we are going to value this player more than the industry may.”
As previously reported, the Twins need to be “wowed” for anything to happen—and it wouldn’t be going out on a limb to say that the “wow” needs to be in the form of pitching.
Twins promote front office Johnsons
Twins GM Thad Levine also told reporters today about two promotions in the Twins front office. Deron Johnson, who previously ran the Twins’ drafts, was promoted to senior advisor of the scouting department, while Sean Johnson, who previously served as the west coast supervisor to the scouting director, was promoted to scouting director. And no, the two are not related.
“Deron Johnson had a reputation of being one of the best talent evaluators in the game,” Levine explained to reporters. “We wanted to identify some of our best talent evaluators and put them in a position to really evaluate the best talent in the world.” Deron was responsible for selecting players like Aaron Hicks, Byron Buxton, Nick Gordon, and Tyler Jay.
As for Sean, Levine said, “In my career I can’t think of too many people who are more universally endorsed than Sean Johnson, both internally as well as externally, including some of the people in his own department who could have been considered for the position themselves.” Sean will take over draft duties from Deron, who will now just serve as a special advisor.
Dodgers re-sign Rich Hill
Rich Hill was considered perhaps the best free agent starting pitcher available in this off season’s market, but he won’t be going to the Twins. Why? Because the Dodgers re-signed the left-hander to a three-year, $48 million contract (!!!).
What does this mean for the Twins? Basically nothing. Although the Twins are in desperate need of starting pitching, they don’t live on a rich hill, and hence were never expected to be in the running for Rich Hill anyway.
Other notes from around the land
- The Nationals apparently want to trade for Andrew McCutchen and Chris Sale (good luck with that).
- Former Nationals closer Mark Melancon signed a big ol’ four-year, $62 million deal with the Giants.
- Bryce Harper is reportedly asking for some kind of insane contract extension in excess of $400 million—and the Nats are saying no.
- The Yankees signed Matt Holiday to be a backup at first base (meaning some kind of Justin Morneau as a Yankee nightmare scenario is basically impossible).