Three Bagger: Darvish, Marte & Otani
Image courtesy of Pool Photo-USA TODAY SportsHunting For An Ace
Things a running a little ahead of schedule in Minnesota after the team qualified for the playoffs for the first time since 2010. Thad Levine and Derek Falvey intend to be buyers this offseason in hopes of making a longer playoff run. There are a number of big name free agents on their list but MLB insider Joy Heyman reports that Yu Darvish is at the top.
Levine helped to bring Darvish to Texas, so there is already a relationship between the Twins’ GM and the star pitcher. Darvish posted a 10-12 record with a 3.86 ERA and 209 strikeouts. Jake Arrieta and Lance Lynn are also options for the Twins but the club will be pushing for Darvish to start the off-season.
Marte’s Contract Voided
Minnesota made a splash on the International market this summer by signing 16-year old Dominican shortstop Jelfry Marte. This week the Twins voided his $3 million contract due to an issue the team discovered during his physical. Sources say the issue was related to his vision.
Marte is now a free agent and has been working out for clubs in Florida. With Marte’s contract off the books, the Twins have an extra $3 million available in their bonus pool to spend on other players. The deadline to use that money is June 15, 2018.
Looking To Japan
The Twins could be looking to spend the money saved from Marte on Japanese star Shohei Otani. Under the new posting system, the release fee was capped at $20 million. To put that in perspective, the Rangers paid a $51 million posting fee to sign Yu Darvish. The lower posting fee will have almost every team interested, including the Twins.
MLB’s newest Collective Bargaining Agreement changed the type of deal Otani can sign. He will be subject to international bonus pools. Under the new CBA, players must now be 25 and have played six seasons in a foreign professional league to be exempt from bonus pools. If he waited until next season, he would qualify as a free agent which would mean a lot more money in his pocket. However, he wants to come to MLB now.
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