One of the major thorns in the side of the Twins for the last 8 seasons, Santana was originally a catcher when the Indians acquired him from the Dodgers for former Minnesota Twins infielder Casey Blake.
After coming up in 2010 behind the plate, Santana moved out to first base in 2014. He’s nothing elite defensively at first base, but with Edwin Encarnacion and Mike Napoli on the team the last two years, he didn’t have the opportunity to do a lot of DH work.
At the plate, Santana has shown solid power, excellent on base ability, and he’s been improving his strikeout rate the last two seasons. He’s hit .249/.365/.445 with the Indians, but the last two seasons, he’s been able to keep his walk rate under 100 each season, and he’s combined for 57 home runs.
Santana has done plenty of damage to the Twins over the years, hitting .254/.351/.470, and 25 home runs. He’s been a touch better at Target Field in his career, playing 68 games, hitting .260/.348/.494 with 14 home runs.
Santana would fit in well with the Twins as a DH. His switch-hitting would allow him to help the lineup no matter which pitcher they’re facing. He would also work well with giving Mauer a day off at first base. At 32 years old soon after opening day in 2018, Santana is going to be a guy who gets less than likely expected due to his age and lack of monster power (he’s topped 30 home runs just once), but he has averaged 24 home runs the last 7 seasons, so there’s plenty of “boom” there.