Minnesota Twins options for a shutdown bullpen in 2018

OAKLAND, CA - MAY 31: Manager Paul Molitor
OAKLAND, CA - MAY 31: Manager Paul Molitor /
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OAKLAND, CA – MAY 31: Manager Paul Molitor
OAKLAND, CA – MAY 31: Manager Paul Molitor /

As we start looking to the Minnesota Twins offseason plans, attention turns to the 2018 roster and the makeup of the team.

The Minnesota Twins are about to enter the offseason as a playoff team. For fans that’s a very fun thing to consider – how can the team make itself better going into 2018 to be an even bigger threat once they get to the playoffs?!

Now that we’ve looked at the 2017 season in review, it’s time to look ahead to the Twins 2018 season and what they could do to make the team better!

Roster Considerations

The current Minnesota Twins 40-man roster contains 45 players, due to the 60-day disabled list. The Twins have 4 major league free agents, meaning they’re going to have to either non-tender one of their 8 arbitration-eligible players or designate a player for assignment just to get to the base 40.

That means for every signing or trade, at least one 40-man player will need to be figured in to be lost along the way. There certainly are some guys that could be designated for assignment. The names in question were mentioned on the second page of the recent discussion of Rule 5 eligible players. There are a host of players that would qualify as guys that could be put into DFA limbo and likely wouldn’t be lost.

The other end of things is that if the Twins would make the acquisition a trade, they could use one of their current 40-man players within the trade to help clear the roster spot right in the deal.

So, after reviewing some possible options for a big move for a starting pitcher and a big bat that could be signed in free agency, let’s take a look today at the options the Minnesota Twins could pursue for an option (or two or three) at the back of the bullpen to lock down the end of the game. After all, we’ve seen teams recently with starting rotations at the level of the Twins current rotation but with an absolutely elite bullpen that were able to pitch themselves deep into the playoffs just as well as a team with multiple “ace” starters.