CHICAGO — The already wounded bullpen of the Minnesota Twins took another punch to the gut with the latest news that reliever Jesse Crain has signed a deal with the Chicago White Sox. The Twins lost reliever Matt Guerrier to the Dodgers early today which made keeping Crain seem like a priority. The deal the Sox gave Crain is reportedly worth around $13 million over the next three years which is $1 million more than L.A gave Guerrier; Crain made $2 million with the Twins last year. The loss of Crain hurts not only from the stand point of the Twins are in dire need of middle relief help, but also the fact that the much hated White Sox further weakened the Twins bullpen.
Crain had a pretty decent year for the Twins in 2010; He posted a 1-1 record with a 3.04 ERA in 71 appearances. Although he was erratic at times, looking more like Jesse ‘Crain-Wreck’ in appearances where he would hemorage hits and runs, the right-hander calmed his nerves and crafted his trade based off these mistakes. The White Sox have made some suprising moves this offseason and this is just the latest. They are looking to re-signed Manny Rameriez and already have done so with Paul Konerko, while bringing in the big bat they were so desperately (and ultimately fruitlessly) chasing circa the trade deadline, Adam Dunn. They let J.J Putz leave for Arizona which was chief among the reason they pursued Crain; he will most likely be filling Putz’s role according to sources. Not only does this annoy Twins fans that Crain is gone and now a White Sox, it looks like the Sox will be extremely dangerous this year.
Ozzie Guillen is no stranger to pursuing Twins and making them former Twins. He obviously has a love affair with the Twins, inventing the name ‘The Piranhas’ and giving the Twins love anytime he can. The Sox lured former Twins catcher and fan favorite A.J Pierzynski to the South Side (albeit from San Francisco) where he is now as loved there and hated here as he was the opposite when he was a Twin. The loss of Crain, however, may turn out to be worse than anything the Twins could possibly imagined. Twins fans would hate to have that sick feeling in their stomach as Crain comes on to shut down the Twins, while his replacement takes over where ‘Crain-Wreck’ left off.