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Reusse: Modern Game Unkind to Dozier, Plouffe

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 06:48 PM
I thought thatPatrick Reusse wrote an interesting article, something I know I have been thinking for the last few years.    htt...
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Park: Newly "dialed in" Thorpe Ready to Compete i...

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 06:33 PM
Do-hyoung Park penned an absolutely fantastic article on Lewis Thorpe.    https://www.mlb.com/...ically-mentally   Check o...
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Over/Under 2021 Preview: Eddie Rosario

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 05:59 PM
The SB Nation site, Let's Go Tribe, they're doing some over-unders for their players. Today they discuss Eddie Rosario. I mainly just lik...
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Hopefully Simmons "issues" are not like Romero...

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 05:50 PM
Per multiple sources, new Minnesota Twins shortstop Andrelton Simmons has been delayed to the team's camp by visa issues. The exact detai...
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Timeline for Top Prospects: 2021 Edition

Twins Minor League Talk Today, 03:57 PM
The Minnesota Twins will enter 2021 as one of the best teams in baseball, and whether they’re projected to win the AL Central or not, a f...
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Recent Blogs

AL Central Offseason Update: Twins Wait While Others Active

Coming off an MLB season unlike any other, many predicted this offseason was going to be a different than one that fans had previously experienced. Every team dealt with a decrease in revenues and many teams were expected to cut payroll. The AL Central’s clubs have seen a variety of moves so far this winter, while Minnesota has been relatively quiet. What does that mean for the AL Central’s future?
Image courtesy of © Scott R. Galvin-USA TODAY Sports
Cleveland Baseball Team: Payroll Dump
The team formerly known as the Indians made a blockbuster deal on Thursday by sending shortstop Francisco Lindor and starting pitcher Carlos Carrasco to the New York Mets for a package of four players. Lindor rumors had been swirling for the throughout the offseason as he is one year away from free agency and Cleveland wanted to get something for him before he hit the open market.

Cleveland is clearly trying to dump as much payroll as possible. With players currently on their roster, Cleveland’s Opening Day payroll is scheduled to be around $35 million. Last season, the lowest payroll in baseball was Baltimore and their payroll was over $52 million. In the tweet above, there were two teams with a payroll under $35 million in 2001 with the Twins being the lowest at $24 million.

Chicago White Sox: Two Team Race
Chicago got their offseason started by hiring Tony La Russa to manager their team. Near the time he was hired, word came out that he had been charged with driving under the influence in Arizona. To make matters worse, it wasn’t his first time being charged with this offense. Besides the off the field issues, La Russa turned 76-years old in October, so his hiring seems questionable even for White Sox fans. To put that in perspective for Twins fans, former manager Tom Kelly is six-years younger than La Russa.

The White Sox have made some moves to bolster their roster as well. Chicago dealt Avery Weems and Dane Dunning to Texas for starting pitcher Lance Lynn. Twins fans will remember Lynn’s poor season with the club, but he has been one of baseball’s best pitchers over the last two seasons. In December, the White Sox brought back a familiar face to the South Side by signing outfielder Adam Eaton to a one-year, $7 million contract which includes a club option for 2022.

Chicago looks to be the Twins biggest challenger in the AL Central, especially after the moves mentioned above.

Detroit Tigers: Hinch Hired for Rebuild
Former Twins manager Ron Gardenhire retired as Tigers manager before the end of the 2020 season. This left the Tigers looking for a new man to run the show in Motown. AJ Hinch was suspended for the entire 2020 season after the Astros cheating scandal and now, he will be charged with turning around a Tigers club that has a winning percentage under .400 for four consecutive seasons.

Last winter, the Tigers brought in two former Twins, CJ Cron and Jonathan Schoop, to bolster their line-up. This winter Detroit turned to another former Twin by signing outfielder Robbie Grossman to a two-year deal worth $10 million guaranteed. He posted a career high 1.3 WAR last year in Oakland and he did this in just 51 games. Detroit also added to their starting pitching depth by signing Jose Urena to a one-year deal worth $3.25 million. It’s still a waiting game in Detroit as their top prospects work their way to the big leagues.

Kansas City: Minor Moves
Like Detroit, Kanas City is in the midst of a rebuild with plenty of questions about what the future might hold for the franchise. One of their biggest offseason moves was signing Mike Minor to a two-year deal. At the same time, the club agreed to terms with outfielder Michael Taylor to a one-year, $1.75 million contract. His addition helps the team to add some outfield depth, but it certainly isn’t a difference making move.

Another familiar name also signed in Kansas City just before the new year. Former Twins pitcher Ervin Santana agreed to a minor league deal to return to Kanas City, a team he called home back in 2013. If he is on the major league roster, he gets a base salary of $1.5 million with a chance to earn an extra $1.75 million in performance bonuses. Santana didn’t pitch in 2020 and he already turned 38-years old.

Minnesota’s lone move has been to sign relief pitcher Hansel Robles. There are likely other moves coming, but the landscape of the AL Central continues to evolve.

What are your thoughts about the AL Central so far this winter? Leave a COMMENT and start the discussion.

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The Royals signed Carlos Santana also. So the Royals have gained ground. But the Twins have time and money so we should revist this article in about a month.

    • tarheeltwinsfan, dbminn and KFEY93 like this

apparently the Cleveland ownership is trying to recoup all their losses from 2020 in a single season. Gross.

Don't you wonder what Shane Bieber is thinking?If we rate the activities of the division teams I think there is no doubt that getting Lynn was the big move and offsets what I think is a negative move with the hiring of LaRussa.Giving up Dunning might be more of a loss than people think at this time (I am still suffering negative Lynn bias).Eaton does nothing for me - just like he did nothing for the Nationals.


KC with Minor and Santana actually jumped up the highest, it is just that they are too far from contending to notice - yet. 


Detroit with Hinch, a MLB pitcher who could help stabilize their young studs and Robbie Grossman managed to stay right where they were - at the bottom, but still they have done something.


Minnesota does beat out Cleveland (who doesn't), but Robles doesn't replace what we have lost and I think in off season rankings (so far) we are fourth in the division, but it will not take a lot to jump to the top. 

In Lynn's defense, he never had a Spring Training when we had him and only rarely got into a decent pitching rhythm when on our team. The Mets clearly got the best of the Lindor trade but time will tell after 2-3 years. Don't count the Royals out as they have some good young pitchers. They aren't ready to challenge the Twins or White Sox but could make some noise. Detroit's chances hinge on whether they can resign Schoop and/or Cron (who may be hurt) and whether Hinch can attract some players as he is the best manager in the Central. We are lucky right now to be in perhaps the easiest division.

Very few teams around league have done much, outside of San Deigo and now Mets.So many big pieces yet to move.I think many teams and players are waiting to see how COVID affects things, and who will be like Cleveland and have a fire sale, or who will try to make moves with teams selling.  


[The White Sox] Giving up Dunning might be more of a loss than people think at this time.

I completely agree with you. Five years of Dunning seems more valuable than one year of Lance Lynn. 

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