By La Velle
Indications are that the Twins will not swing a deal with Seattle for third baseman Adrian Beltre.
The Twins recently contacted the Mariners about Beltre’s availability, but it looks like the Mariners’ price would be too high – something like the return the A’s got in the Joe Blanton deal. The Phillies gave up two of their top four prospects, along with a third minor leaguer, to get Blanton.
In the Twins’ case, it could mean one of their four young starters plus a couple prospects.
Although the Mariners kicked Richie Sexson to the curb, they want to contend in the near future. Beltre is one of their decent players in an underachieving lineup. And he’s their best glove in the infield. So it would take a lot to get him.
Two other things to consider: Seattle didn’t do well with the Erik Bedard trade and probably feel pressured to make up for it. And they have a new GM in Lee Pelekoudas who probably wants to make a big splash.
I mentioned recently that the Twins were very interested in Colorado third baseman Garrett Atkins last year. It doesn’t look like the Twins will be able to rekindle those talks this year because Atkins is doing so well the Rockies view him as a core player.
So the Twins will have to look elsewhere for a right-handed hitter. They are also on the lookout for bullpen help, an area some people in the organization feel is a greater need. There are a few out there. Jon Rauch of the Nationals is one. Fernando Rodney is available but he’s been injured, is having trouble finding the plate and trading within the division is hard.
I have no evidence that the Twins have asked for this player, but if Oakland is interested in dealing Huston Street, I think he’d be a great set up man – as long as he stays healthy.