The 2013 Twins will officially get underway as pitchers and catchers are scheduled to have their first workout of the Spring in a month on February 13. The first full team workout is scheduled for February 16.
Today is the day that many fans in Twins Territory begin the countdown on their calendars. So what is there to expect from the club coming in?
There have been plenty of additions this winter, but below are the most notable for Twins fans to look forward to watch during Spring Training. Here’s a quick review:
RHP Kevin Correia: Correia and the Twins inked a two-year, $10 MM contract on December 13. This was the first of a few moves to help solidify the 2013 starting rotation. Correia, 32, will be making a transition to the American League, having pitched for the Giants, Padres and Pirates all of his career.
RHP Mike Pelfrey: Pelfrey comes to the Twins just a week after the Correia signing on a one-year, $4MM pact. Like Correia, he will also be transitioning to the American League, previously pitching for the Mets. Pelfrey, returning to baseball after a year away due to tommy john surgery, has intriguing upside and the Twins hope he can return healthy and eat some innings.
RHP Vance Worley: Also new to the American League, Vance “The Vanimal” Worley comes to the Twins as part of Ben Revere trade with the Phillies. Worley, also expected to be part of the rotation, pitched to a 4.20 ERA last season. Also part of that trade is RHP Trevor May. As part of the 40 man roster, May is a promising prospect who should see some innings in Spring Training.
RHP Rich Harden: Harden comes to the Twins on a minor league deal with an invite to Major League Camp. Harden, known for a high strike out rate at a career 9.2 K/9, is trying to make the team after right rotator cuff surgery a year ago. We should see plenty of him in a month, as the Twins would like to use him in a role in either the rotation or bullpen. Harden’s deal includes an opt-out clause if he is not added to the Major League roster by July 31st.
RHP Alex Meyer: Like Harden, highly-touted prospect Alex Meyer has an invitation to big league camp. While it is unlikely Meyer breaks camp with the team, he is sure going to be fun to watch. Meyer, a tall prospect with top-of-the-rotation potential, comes to the Twins from the Nationals as the single piece of the Denard Span trade.
There is certainly the possibility of more moves to come in the next month. The Twins may not be done with pitching. With GM Terry Ryan’s history of January bargain big signings coupled along with the theme of this offseason so far, I wouldn’t be surprised if some more Brandon Webb rumors surfaced soon.
While it is unlikely, the Twins may not rule out signing a low-cost free agent center-fielder to roam Target Field while Aaron Hicks continues to hone his skill at Triple A Rochester.
Ahh… baseball is around the corner.