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Twins Hot Stove: Psych on Morneau, looking for pitchers

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Turns out, the Twins aren’t crazy, and they are prioritizing pitching help over acquiring more first basemen.

Division Series - Los Angeles Dodgers v Washington Nationals - Game One
Could the Twins sign Joe Blanton?
Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

The off-season rumors are coming fast and furious these days. Here’s the latest:

  • Looks like that rumored reunion between the Twins and Morneau was really just a pipe dream. According to LEN3, the two sides did talk, but just like most of us here, they both realized there was no room on the roster.
  • While we’re at it, Mike Berardino says the Twins are pretty much out on Mike Napoli too.
  • What the Twins are looking for, you’ll probably be happy to hear, is pitching help. "I would expect, in between now and Opening Day, we'll have added at least one or two pitchers to our mix to enhance both the depth and the quality within our 12-man staff," Thad Levine said during TwinsFest.
  • One rumored target, according to LEN3, is righty reliever Joe Blanton. Although he’s now 36 years old, Blanton did startlingly well last year for the Dodgers, holding a 2.48 ERA over 80.0 innings pitched. That’s better than Blanton has ever done in his career—much to Twitter user @TheAmitie’s dismay.
  • In case you’re wondering, @TheAmitie made good on that bet.
  • It’s unclear if the Twins have a realistic chance of landing Blanton, however. He’s one of the better free agent relievers on the market, and per Mike Berardino, it’s unlikely the Twins will give any multiyear deals to outside relievers. I guess it all comes down to how much other teams are willing to give Blanton, especially given his age.
  • The Twins are also reportedly interested in lefty reliever Boone Logan. Logan had a nice 3.69 ERA over 46.1 innings pitched for the Rockies last year.
  • The Twins signed 39 year-old Ryan Vogelsong earlier this off-season, and apparently it’s not just some throwaway, minor league deal—they are actually expecting him to contribute. The team likes the leadership aspect the veteran can bring, and Rob Antony compared him to former-Twin Kevin Correia. “It’s a low-risk thing with a chance for some upside benefit,” Antony told the Pioneer Press. “He could give some of our younger guys more time to develop if they’re not ready.”
  • If you’re interested, you can check out MLB Daily Dish’s 2016-2017 Free Agent tracker to see what other pitchers are still available on the market.