The mud continues to be settling within the aftermath of the Twins’ massive four-player commerce with the Marlins this previous week, as Luis Arraez was despatched to Miami in alternate for right-hander Paul Lopez and prospects Jose Salas and Byron Chourio. The transfer shook up Minnesota’s lineup and added one more exterior arm to the Twins’ rotation.
As famous by Phil Miller of the Minneapolis Star Tribune, all 5 members of the projected beginning 5 (Lopez, Tyler Mahle, Sonny Gray, Joe Ryanand so on Kenta Maeda) had been all acquired in trades over the past three years. Chris Paddack is at present recovering from Tommy John surgical procedure however was additionally acquired in a commerce with the Padres previous to final season, whereas Simeon Woods Richardson is one other arm on the depth arm that got here to the Twins as a part of the deal that despatched Jose Berrios to the Blue Jays on the 2021 commerce deadline.
While it’s considerably uncommon for a crew to construct its rotation fully through the commerce market, Twins chief baseball officer Derek Falvey was blunt in telling reporters (together with Miller and Betsy Helfand of the St. Paul Pioneer Press) that, “I do not care the place [the starters] come from We want actually good starters and we want actually good pitchers. Some of these are going to be free-agent signings, a few of these are going to be trades, and a few of these may also hopefully be from improvement. But the aim right here is to proceed to deepen the beginning rotation and pitching workers nevertheless we will do it.”
Bailey Ober is a homegrown product, chosen by the Twins within the twelfth spherical of the 2017 draft. The right-hander has pitched effectively in 148 1/3 innings and 31 begins over the past two seasons, though Lopez’s addition seemingly pushes Ober out of the rotation combine for now. Of course, rotations hardly ever keep wholesome for a complete season, leaving alternative for Ober or different pitchers like Woods Richardson, Josh Winder, Louie Varland, and so on. to make some begins if one of many high 5 wants to go to the injured record.
There’s additionally an opportunity that the beginning 5 turns into a beginning six, as adopting a six-man rotation is “one thing we discuss so much,” Falvey admitted. Minnesota’s depth offers the crew the flexibleness to shift to a six-man rotation if mandatory, and “I’ll let you know that our hope proper now’s that we’ll go along with 5 starters, and we really feel like we have now 5 good ones…however in the end [we] have some depth behind it to be sure that we’re in a superb place.” If everybody stays wholesome and the Twins do find yourself with a surplus of beginning candidates, Falvey described that potential situation as “a terrific downside to have.”
The Lopez commerce closes the ebook on Arraez’s tenure with the Twins, because the infielder went from being a reasonably unknown prospect to being an All-Star, Silver Slugger winner, and AL batting champion in 2022. Arraez was already a robust performer within the three years previous to his massive 2022 marketing campaign, however his efficiency did dip a bit in an injury-shortened 2021 season. In the wake of that comparatively down yr, Jim Souhan of the Minneapolis Star Tribune writes that the Twins had some talks with Arraez a couple of long-term extension, however Arraez turned the membership down.
As a Super Two participant, Arraez is eligible for 4 journeys by means of the arbitration course of, and he and the Twins prevented a listening to in Arraez’s first yr of arb-eligibility by agreeing to a $2.125MM wage for the 2022 season. While the phrases of Minnesota’s extension supply aren’t recognized, it’s truthful to guess that the Twins had been on the lookout for a deal that will’ve coated all 4 of these arbitration years, in addition to at the very least considered one of Arraez’s free agent years. Signing such a contract would’ve locked in a pleasant assure for Arraez, and the primary main payday of a profession that started with a modest $40K bonus as a world signing.
But, Arraez opted as an alternative to wager on himself to rebound from his 2021 season, and that self-confidence paid off properly. Prior to the commerce, Arraez and the Twins had been headed to an arbitration listening to after not with the ability to attain a wage settlement earlier than the arbitration figure-exchange deadline — Arraez is on the lookout for a $6.1MM wage, whereas the Twins countered with $5MM. It appears potential that the Marlins may nonetheless go to a listening to with Arraez as a result of common entrance workplace precept, even when an arbitration listening to could be one thing of a clumsy begin to the connection between the infielder and his new crew.