Minnesota Twins: 4 Possible Trade Chips not named Kepler or Arraez
By Otto Johnson
The Minnesota Twins free agency plan continues to collapse. Carlos Rodon just became the latest Twins free agent target outside of Christian Vázquez to sign elsewhere, agreeing a 7-year, $162 million deal with the hated New York Yankees.
This leaves Dansby Swanson as the only major free agent target available, and if the team misses on him as well (despite their interest), their only available options will be mediocre free agent targets and a some trade options.
The team needs to add talent somehow, so those trades seem like the most-likely avenues. Max Kepler and Luis Arraez are the two most likely trade options, but there are several other trade chips the team could move.
Breaking down three potential trade chips the Minnesota Twins can offer in a big deal.
The first two are Kenta Maeda and Sonny Gray. Gray, Maeda, and Tyler Mahle are all free agents after 2023, so with the team on it’s way to a full rotation rebuild, moving one of these arms makes a lot of sense.
The idea has already been to have the pair anchor their rotation this season, but trade rumors have begun to circle that the pair could be moved. A year worth of a stellar pitcher (Gray) could fetch a decent prospect haul, and with Maeda’s health back on track, he could also land a few prospects.
The team could move them, accept that things have gone downhill, and prepare for a 2024 rotation potentially consisting of Joe Ryan, Bailey Ober, Josh Winder, Simeon Woods Richardson, and Louie Varland.
If they’re doing that, they could also move their third trade chip, second baseman Jorge Polanco. On a similar deal to Max Kepler, he offers even more value despite playing a lesser position. If the team moves on from Kepler, Maeda, and Gray, moving on from Polanco is a logical next step.
He’s a veteran player who the team could move on from to create space for Edouard Julien to eventually make the jump to the MLB or to give Luis Arraez a more realistic position outside of designated hitter.
Our last trade suggestion is Austin Martin. Fresh off an excellent Arizona Fall League Performance, Martin’s trade value is higher than it was before, and if the team is going to push for big league-talent instead of starting a rebuild, Martin could be valuable as he doesn’t have a future here (position-wise).
The Minnesota Twins need to make a trade, so adding more talent in any way possible has to be the goal. Moving any of these players can help address some of the team’s biggest needs ahead of next season.