It’s often thought that teams don’t match up with foes from within the division, especially considering how closely the Cleveland Guardians are in contention with the Minnesota Twins. Sandy Leon has been at Triple-A for the majority of this season, however, playing just eight games at the Major League level.
An 11-year veteran, Leon is a light hitting backstop owning just a .595 career OPS. He hasn’t batted above the Mendoza Line since 2017 with the Boston Red Sox, but he’s been a capable defender behind the dish. Given the inexperience brought with Caleb Hamilton, and Sanchez’s inability to control the position defensively, this is a move that acts as an insurance policy until the return of Jeffers.
In acquiring Leon, Minnesota decided to part with minor league reliever Ian Hamilton. Signed in 2021 after spending time with the Chicago White Sox, Hamilton is a hard thrower that’s struggled with command and worked to build his way back following a serious car accident in 2019. Hamilton has posted a very strong 1.88 ERA at Triple-A this year, but it’s turned into just 2 2/3 innings of opportunity at the highest level.
Given Hamilton’s 11.3 K/9 and 2.5 BB/9, it seemed he could be someone that Minnesota may opt to select at some point down the stretch. Knowing the Twins bullpen needs help, Hamilton has shown flashes that probably could’ve been explored. Still, trading for another need in-depth behind the plate, this is the type of low-risk move that gets it done.
There’s still just about an hour until the 2022 Major League Baseball trade deadline passes, and it remains to be seen if Minnesota is done for the day. Adding three pieces across three separate trades, the front office has put in some substantial work to supplement a group leading the American League Central division.