Could the Minnesota Twins still add pitching?

ST. PETERSBURG, FL - SEPTEMBER 16: Pitcher Alex Cobb
ST. PETERSBURG, FL - SEPTEMBER 16: Pitcher Alex Cobb /

The Minnesota Twins made their first big splash of the offseason over the weekend. After already acquiring one starting pitcher via trade, could the Twins still add another from free agency?

The aforementioned trade was for Jake Odorizzi and he could help the Minnesota Twins add more. Odorizzi has spent the last few seasons pitching in Tampa alongside current free agent Alex Cobb. Minnesota needs all the pitching they can get so hopefully Odorizzi can help the front office reel Cobb in.

There are still plenty of available pitchers on the market to consider for the Twins, Jake Arrieta and Lance Lynn being two. However, both of those pitchers will command top dollar, and Minnesota can’t afford to overspend. One bad move is amplified more in the Twin Cities than in New York City, so the Twins brass needs to make certain the contract fits the projections.

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Why should the Twins sign Cobb?

Cobb is talented but comes along with some injury concerns. However, when he’s healthy he is a top flight pitcher. From 2013-2014 Cobb was 21-12 with a 2.82 ERA in 49 starts for the Rays. He also flashed great command averaging 142 strikeouts and only 46 walks during that time. Those are top of the rotation numbers and Cobb looked destined to be an ace.

However, he missed the entire 2015 season after undergoing Tommy John surgery in May of that year. He didn’t return until September of the 2016 season, and his numbers were less than inspiring. He started only five games with a 1-2 record and an astounding 8.59 ERA in only 22 innings pitched. That’s not exactly what you want to see from a pitcher in his return from injury.

However, Cobb bounced back in 2017 posting a 3.66 ERA. He had 128 strikeouts and showed good command, walking only 44 batters in 178.1 innings pitched. Cobb definitely put himself back onto the radar and the Minnesota Twins could use another quality starter.

The free agent market has moved slowly with only one of the top arms off of the board, and it’s already Spring Training. The Twins could spend a little extra money and sign Lynn or Arrieta, hoping they cash in. However, Minnesota should go the smart route and sign Cobb to solidify the starting rotation, at a fraction of the cost.

Next: Can Phil Hughes bounce back in 2018?

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