After the last out of each World Series, I tend to take a break from baseball for awhile. November brings my birthday and Thanksgiving, while December provides the heating-up of NFL football and the big holidays. January has the pigskin playoffs, and my lack of interest in Spring Training has already been documented.
But there are too many outlets (TV, social media, podcasts, etc.) in which baseball news seeps into my life that I’m never totally disconnected—and come early January I was really starting to worry about the Twins’ offseason. Correa opted out as predicted, no meaningful arms were acquired, and the biggest move was signing a guy who strikes out more than Miguel Sano. Gulp.
But then—right about when the Vikings provided their annual disappointment—the Twins’ hot stove became a blast furnace with two high-profile moves:
Jaw-Drop #1: Correa returns!
After the San Francisco Giants balked about C-4’s medicals and MLB’s Million Dollar Man wouldn’t even pony up the long-term cash for similar reasons, Carlos astoundingly ended up right back here in Twins Territory.
This gives the Twins a potentially potent lineup and bench/depth on the swinging side of things—no longer relying on a Royce Lewis renaissance or a Kyle Farmer fill-in.
As soon as Correa’s physical passed muster in Minnesota, it got me wondering whether the Twins would: A. Retain their powerful offensive potential; or B. Make a trade to improve the moundsmen. Well, no sooner than that thought had even entered my brain...
Jaw-Drop #2: Arraez departs!
Blame me for this, folks—I broke my personal edict about buying specific player-related merchandise when I purchased the “Arraez .316” shirt from SotaStick last month.
Despite his 2022 batting champion performance, Arraez was essentially a player without a position (dreadful at 3B while boxing out others at 2B, 1B, & DH) that the Falvine (TM) deemed replaceable in lieu of the Pablo Lopez return.
I think the rationale for this move was along the lines of “losing Arraez hurts, but we can’t have Chi Chi Gonzalez, Cole Sands, and/or Aaron Sanchez manning the rotation in key September contests again”. Essentially: offense is more replaceable than pitching.
That being said, I will certainly miss Luis’ energy and unique style at the ballpark.
Overall, I’m generally pleased—much like Ben Beecken—about where the Twins roster currently stands. Retaining Correa’s services and swapping offense (deepest asset) for pitching (most questionable asset) seems like a good place to be.
Now—just two more months of the Minnesota winter slog to endure before Opening Day.