Minnesota Twins and San Diego Padres Possible Trade Partners


The trade deadline is this Friday and it’s no secret that the Minnesota Twins are in the market for bullpen help. According to Jon Morosi of Fox Sports the Twins have had talks with the San Diego Padres about their relievers.

The Twins bullpen is currently ranked 24 overall with a 3.91 earned run average. They also rank dead last in strikeouts recorded with 196. The next closest team has 237 strikeouts. They need to bolster their bullpen if they are going to make the playoffs for the first time since 2010.

The Padres offer four options to help the Twins upgrade their bullpen.

1. Joaquin Benoit has been the name that’s been linked to the Twins for the past few weeks. The veteran setup man is 6-4 on the season with a 2.27 earned run average. He likely would cost the Twins a mid-tier prospect, but he’d give the Twins a reliable setup man for Glen Perkins.

2. Shawn Kelley has been lights out for the Padres as of late. In his last seven appearances, Kelly has pitched 10.1 innings and recorded 14 strikeouts and given up just five hits. On the season Kelley is 1-2 with a 3.09 earned run average.

3. Brandon Maurer is having a career-year in his third full season in the majors. He is 6-3 with a 2.64 earned run average. He’d be under team control for the next four years and the Twins would have to give up more to get Mauerer than they would in order to get Benoit or Kelley, but if they believe he could be a viable piece of the bullpen moving forward they should pull the trigger.

4. This one is thinking way outside the box and likely not even on the mind of Terry Ryan. But, the Padres have reportedly made closer, Craig Kimbrel available as they look to shed payroll. Kimbrel is owed $28 million through 2017 and has a club option for 2018. Kimbrel, regarded by many as the best closer in baseball would give the Twins a power arm that they desperately need. Perkins is a good closer, but Kimbrel is on another level. This is the first season that opposing teams are hitting over .200 on him (.204). He can strike out the side in the ninth and make it look easy. If the Twins are serious about contending and improving their bullpen they should be looking at Kimbrel. Imagine Kimbrel and Perkins working in unison. If the Twins had the lead heading into the eighth inning it could be all she wrote with Perkins working the eighth and Kimbrel closing the door in the ninth, or vice versa.

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