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The off season in the AL Central, so far

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A look at how the Twins are doing compared to the rest of the division

MLB: Los Angeles Dodgers at Pittsburgh Pirates Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The Twins’ off season is obviously going slower than most fans would like, but the other AL Central are not doing much better. Here is a snapshot of the Twins’ off season, compared to the rest of their division.

Minnesota Twins

First things first. The reigning AL Central champs have been making their already solid bunch better and more poised for a playoff run in 2020.

Signed

  • Jake Odorizzi (1 year, 17.8 million)
  • Michael Pineda (2 years, 20 million)
  • Alex Avila (1 year, 4.25 million)

Players that the Twins are “In on”

  • Josh Donaldson (would move Sano to first) (link)
  • Hyun-Jin Ryu (link)
  • Madison Bumgarner (link)

Gotta be honest, I feel okay with who we’ve signed so far (although I hope we sign Ryu/Bumgarner soon.) A starting rotation of Berrios, Ryu/Bumgarner, Odorizzi, Pineda and one low/level free agent is not bad at all. We should sign some top relievers as well, and the free agent class includes Sergio Romo, Daniel Hudson, Will Harris, and Shane Greene, which are good options. They need to sign a first baseman (or a third baseman, like Josh Donaldson, and move Sano to first), and I would like to see them sign 1 more bench player. Rumors also suggest the Twins are considering trading from their outfield depth, with both Eddie Rosario and Jake Cave’s names having come up. So far, though, the outlook is pretty good (although I do wish something would finally happen, I’ve been refreshing Jon Heyman’s twitter feed every ten minutes).


Cleveland Indians

The Spiders haven’t done nearly as much as anybody else to ensure the status of their 2020 squad. Twins fans, if you are complaining about your team doing nothing this off season, then try being an Indians fan.

Signed

  • Literally Nobody
  • Except they traded for Sandy Leon

Trade Rumors

  • The Indians want to trade their star player Francisco Lindor, and the Dodgers really want him. Now apparently Mike Clevinger might be involved (link)
  • The Indians might also be trading players to the other LA team, as the Angels have been linked to Corey Kluber and Carlos Carrasco (link)

So... I don’t think the Indians are in a good place. Trading all your star players and rebuilding is usually something that bad teams do. The Indians were 93-69 and had a shot at winning the division. Also, notice that there aren’t many rumors surrounding the Indians and top free agents, even though they need an outfielder, a second-baseman, and one more position player. The Indians are doing a really bad job. I would be crying my head off if I was an Indians fan right now. Heck, if I was a Cleveland sports fan I’d be crying. Think about it: Indians, Browns, Cavaliers... Anyway, I’m getting off-topic.


Chicago White Sox

The White Sox have got something going. To be honest, they might be more of a threat in 2020 than the Indians will be. They’ve been signing significant players and constantly improving.

Signed

  • Yasmani Grandal (4 years, 73 million)
  • Nomar Mazara (Acquired in trade from Rangers)
  • Jose Abreu (Accepted QO and signed extension)

Rumored to be “In on”

  • They are rumored to be trying to trade for David Price (link) I know it doesn’t explicitly state “White Sox”, but we can only assume that.
  • Edwin Encarnacion (link)
  • Dallas Keuchel AND Nicholas Castellanos (link)
  • Craig Stammen (link)

That’s honestly a good bunch. Yasmani Grandal was a great signing and will probably kill the Twins in the next few years. Eloy Jiménez, Yoan Moncada, José Abreu, and now Grandal and Mazara, that bunch is the front of a very formidable lineup. Their remaining needs are numerous, though: DH, and starting and relief pitching. If they sign Encarnacion, that’s their DH. Keuchel and probably a low-level starter would be their starters, and Stammen and possibly one more could be their relievers. We know they are willing to spend on a pitcher—they reportedly offered Stephen Strasburg more than Washington signed him for. A lot still to go, but there is definitely something brewing in the South Side.


Detroit Tigers

The Tigers are rebuilding, but part of rebuilding is making moves. They have been active in free agency as well as the others. Here are their signings and rumors.

Signed

  • Austin Romine (1 year, 4.1 million)

Rumored to be “In on”

  • Robinson Chirinos (link)

That’s pretty much it. The Romine signing gives them a catcher, which probably even eliminates Chirinos. Romine is a good fit for the Tigers, as he is a good leader and Detroit has many young guys. They have a good (but not great) young core, consisting of Victor Reyes, Travis Demeritte, Niko Goodrum, Jeimer Candelario, and others. Their minor league system consists of good prospects like Casey Mize and Matt Manning, and they’ll get the #1 pick in the draft because they finished 2019 at a miserable 47-113. They’re boring. Next team.


Kansas City Royals

The Royals are rebuilding, as are the Tigers. They have some promising, exciting players, but as for the off season, it’s boring here too.

Signed

  • Ooh, they signed someone named Jesse Hahn? I’ll put that.

Trade Rumors

  • Whit Merrifield to the Padres? That might happen. (link)

The Royals are more interesting than the Tigers because they actually have players of note: Whit Merrifield, Jorge Soler, and Adalberto Mondesi. They might trade these for prospects, which would be interesting. Merrifield to teams like the Padres and Phillies could make sense, but the Royals are apparently reluctant to get a Merrifield deal done, and it’s obvious why. Their top prospect is Bobby Witt Jr, and he’s looking pretty good in the minors. All in all, the Royals’ rebuild is definitely looking better than that of the Tigers.


So, Twins fans, don’t be too mad that the Twins aren’t getting anything done. Three of the four other AL Central teams are suffering that same problem.