By La Velle
The Twins met yesterday with the agent for Mark DeRosa and definitely are exploring ways to land the versatile player. DeRosa is 34 but still hit 23 homers and 78 RBI last year in stints with Cleveland and St. Louis (batted .250 but, IIRC, has an injury with the Cards). He could be the best thing the Twins have as a No. 2 hitter in front of Joe Mauer.
There are several third baseman available, and the buyer’s market could grow after Saturday, when some arbitration-eligible players aren’t tendered contracts. For instance, there’s a lot of speculation that Colorado will non-tender Garrett Atkins. That could drive down prices.
There have been rumors that DeRosa is seeking a three-year, $27 million deal, but the market could force him to settle for less. The indications I received last night (early this morning) were that the Twins would find ways to make a two and, possibly, a three-year deal work.
So don’t expect anything to go down this week. Teams will wait until after the tender deadline on Saturday to survey the market and plan accordingly.
I know there’s a report of the Twins having interest in Adrian Beltre, Pedro Feliz and Juan Uribe. The agents for Feliz have not heard from the Twins. I have not heard anything about Beltre – although the Twins have spoken with his agent, Scott Boras, about Joe Crede and might have asked about Beltre too. And the Uribe link….I just don’t believe it.
Ran into an agent with the same agency that represents Rich Harden. The Twins have not been in contact recently and it sounded like the Mariners had a good shot to land him.
There continues to be mutual interest between the Twins and former Gopher Robb Quinlan, but nothing is close. And I sense that the Twins view Quinlan as a minor league sign with an invite to camp, while Quinlan is looking for a major league deal.
Update: I forgot to mention that the Twins tried to sign Boof Bonser to a one-year deal in recent weeks but were rebuffed. If he had signed, he probably wouldn’t have been desginated for assignment on Tuesday. It was risky for Bonser, who is coming off of shoulder surgery to turn down a deal. Now, he’s expected to become a free agent on Saturday when the Twins release him.
BTW, I met former Twins Bill Singer and Mike Cubbage at breakfast this morning. Their claim to fame is that they arrived with Jim Gideon, Roy Smalley and $250,000 from Texas in 1976 in exchange for Bert Blyleven and Danny Thompson.
Singer is a scout with Washington. Cubbage is with the Rays.
Singer couldn’t believe Sid Hartman still works. He’s not the only one. (rim shot)