Report: Twins To Sign LHP J.A. Happ
Image courtesy of Brad Penner, USA TodayOn Wednesday afternoon, the Twins were back in the news, making a second major-league move. The team added a veteran with a lot of experience and a lot of success.
Happ turned 38-years-old in October. 2021 will be his 15th season in the big leagues. In 2020, he went 2-2 with a 3.47 ERA in nine starts for the Yankees. In 49 1/3 innings, he walked 15 and struck out 42 batters. He has had an ERA under 4 in five of the past six seasons.
According to Jon Heyman, the one year deal will be worth $8 million.
The deal leaves the Twins with a rotation consisting of:
Devin Smeltzer and Lewis Thorpe are still in the picture, and Jordan Balazovic, Jhoan Duran and maybe Dakota Chalmers also could see time in 2021.
This shouldn’t come as too big a surprise, as the Twins were interested in Happ the last time he was a free agent. Twins Daily’s Tom Froemming uncovered this interesting bit of information regarding Happ last week:
That information is available on Happ’s Baseball Savant page. Happ ranked third in the league in HR-xHR with 2.9 in 2020 and was second in that stat at 9.3 in 2019. He’ll surely embrace a change of scenery.
Last season, Happ threw his 91 mph fastball 66% of the time, his slider 19% of the time and his changeup 14% of the time. He’ll also mix in a curveball sparingly. Information below also via Baseball Savant.
The $8 million deal matches what Toronto signed Robbie Ray for earlier this offseason. MLB Trade Rumors had Happ as their 41st ranked free agent and predicted he'd get a one-year, $6 million deal. FanGraphs had him ranked 45th and their Craig Edwards predicted he'd get this exact deal.
Happ had a $17 million option that would have been triggered had he made 10 starts or pitched 61 1/3 innings last season. The Yankees made sure he only made nine starts, and Happ wasn't too pleased about it.
(Tom Froemming contributed to this article as well)
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