Johnny Cueto, RHP
A lot has been made about the Twins need to find some positional depth, but there's still a lot of unanswered quesitons about the rotation. Perhaps that's where a classic veteran signing could come into play in the form of Johnny Cueto.
He's planning on pitching in 2024 and seems to be working his way back in a way that should intrigue the Twins. After all, the team loves to take chances on aging veterans to see if they have anything left in the tank, and Cueto fits the bill.
He pitched 158 1/3 innings for the White Sox in 2022, posting a 3.35 ERA which helped him revive his career a bit and land a nice deal with the Marlins. Unfortunately that's where the good times stopped rolling, as Cueto got injured in his first start and got lit up once he returned to the mix later in the season.
Finishing last year with a 6.02 ERA isn't exactly attractive, but it might not be a true indication of what he has left in the tank. He'd be a low-risk, high-upside candidate for the Twins, the kind the team likes to take a flier on to see if he can recapture some magic. It might be wishful thinking, but Cueto's ceiling might be a Diet Coke version of what Kenta Maeda brought to the rotation last year, which helps start to answer the question of what to do at the back of the Twins rotation.
Then again, there's already a growing logjam of pitchers there who could fill the No. 4/No. 5 starter role.
Anthony DeSclafani was acquired in the Jorge Polanco trade and figures to be in the mix to replace Maeda's role in the rotation, and there's also Louie Varland to consider as well. The Twins really don't need anymore help in the bullpen, but the team failed to proper address needs in the starting rotation.
Cueto might be a good player to bring in on a minor league deal and see if he can work his way into a meaningful role in the rotation. It's not unlike the flier Minnesota took on Dallas Kuechel last year.