Twins’ Tenure: 2020
Tyler Clippard celebrated his fifteenth season in the majors with the Arizona Diamondbacks last year, where he quietly had one of his best seasons yet. In the most competitive division in baseball, Clippard held a 3.20 ERA, 1.303 WHIP, and 1.9 K/W ratio. At age 37, Clippard is one of the oldest relievers on the market and unlikely to get a long-term contract with any team. This makes him a cost-efficient and effective addition to the team as an alternative to Taylor Rogers or Caleb Thielbar in short relief scenarios.
Twins’ Tenure: half of 2019
Blake Parker was designated for assignment during the height of the Bomba Squad era and was quickly picked up by the Philadelphia Phillies. Last season, we briefly saw him in Cleveland’s bullpen, where he was, dare we say, pretty good! It’s as close to a 180 as we’ve seen since his last days in Minnesota. His 3.09 ERA, 142 ERA+, and 2.64 SO/W in 43 innings last season are fairly comparable to Tyler Duffey’s statistics. Similar to Clippard, his age is a disadvantage on paper, but his price tag is unlikely to break the bank.
Twins’ Tenure: 2018 - 2019
The Twins selected Kohl Stewart fourth overall in the 2013 MLB Draft, over the likes of Tim Anderson, Aaron Judge, and Twins’ legend Isiah Kiner-Falefa. He demolished the Minor Leagues until he was called up to the Majors in 2018, where he fizzled out almost immediately. Things have been challenging for Stewart since his release in 2019. He opted out of the 2020 season due to having Type 1 Diabetes, pitched for two months last year with the Cubs until he was placed on the 60-day IL, and was offered only a minor league assignment with the Cubs.
With that said, Kohl Stewart is only 26 years old, making him over a decade younger than the others on this list. With the addition of a Cutter last season, Stewart has a six-pitch repertoire with varying degrees of success. He currently relies heavily on his Sinker, which is by far his least effective pitch. If the Twins can focus Stewart on perfecting his virtually unhittable Slider and newly-added Cutter, Stewart can become a Sergio Romo-esque reliever with a Thielbar-esque story. Due to his recent misfortunes, Stewart is likely also the cheapest addition on this list, Signing Stewart to another Minor League assignment is low-cost with a high upside.
Twins’ Tenure: 2019 - 2020
Speaking of Sergio Romo, this fan-favorite has spent time with almost every team in the league with no signs of stopping. Last season, opponents had a paltry .219 batting average against his infamous Slider. Romo also pitched 61 2/3 innings last year, one inning more than his All-Star season in 2013. Romo is a workhorse who seems to defy time and gravity. His return to Minnesota will be a welcome relief (pun intended) for fans who have lost so many other favorites this past week.
Who else would you like to see the Twins reunite with? Leave a comment below!