Twins players with minor-league options on the 40-man roster

Here's everything to know about minor-league options this season.
Cleveland Guardians v Minnesota Twins
Cleveland Guardians v Minnesota Twins / Brace Hemmelgarn/GettyImages

Baseball is finally back, which means teams across the league are going to start piecing together their Opening Day rosters. Spring Training will be a good testing ground to see what pieces work outside of the obvious lineup pillars, which is going to be key for the Minnesota Twins.

We know the heavy-hitters, both figuratively and literally, but the lack of offseason movement puts the onus on in-house talent to step up. That's the expectation all the way down to the minor-league level, as the Twins are expected to call up guys like Austin Martin and Brooks Lee at some point this year.

There will be other movement as well, which means minor-league options are going to get used for at least a few different players.

How to minor-league options work in MLB?

Sending players down and calling them up is a little more complicated than it seems on the surface.

Each player is only allotted three minor-league options throughout their career. However, using an option only comes into play if the players in question has been added to the team's 40-man roster. So teams don't have to use options on players who get moved between minor league levels.

In order to get called up to the MLB roster, that player must be added to the 40-man roster.

After a player is added to the 40-man roster, if he's sent down to minor leagues for at least 20 days, he will lose an option. Only one optioned is used per season, though, regardless of how many times a player is shuffled back and forth between the major and minor leagues. 

Twins players with minor-league options on the 40-man roster

Which Twins players have no minor-league options remaining?

  • Brock Stewart, RHP
  • Steven Okert, LHP
  • Jay Jackson, RHP

These are guys who can't be sent down to the minors without first being placed on waivers. Nick Gordon was on this list but rather than DFA him, the Twins made a trade with Miami -- which is where Okert came from.

So, the Twins and Marlins essentially swapped players who were out of options rather than potentially lose them for nothing. This trio of players differs from other players on the Twins 40-man roster without options because they're less established and could end up elsewhere at some point this season.

Which Twins players have 3 minor-league options remaining?

  • Joe Ryan, RHP
  • Kody Funderburk, LHP
  • Jair Carmago, C
  • Austin Martin, OF
  • Matt Caterino, RHP
  • Jorge Alcala, RHP
  • Emmanuel Rodriguez, OF
  • Yunior Severino, INF

We can basically dub this the Wiggle Room Group, because the Twins can send these guys down and call them back up a few times before things get tricky. Right now ony Joe Ryan, Kody Funderburk, and Jorge Alcala have actually been called up, which means there's even more leash for the rest of the group.

Ryan probably isn't getting sent down unless things truly go off the rails for him, at which point we'll have bigger problems than worrying about how many options he has. Funderburk and Alcala are fringe candidates to be on the 26-man roster, but the fact that they have a full load of options makes them likely to be the first ones on the chopping block.

Which Twins players have 2 minor-league options remaining?

  • Edouard Julien, 2B
  • Royce Lewis, 3B
  • Matt Wallner, OF
  • Ryan Jeffers, C
  • Griffin Jax, RP
  • Justin Topa, RP
  • Louie Varland, RHP
  • Simeon Woods Richardson, RHP
  • Brent Headrick, LHP
  • Zack Weiss, RHP

Edouard Julien and Royce Lewis are fixtures in the lineup at this point and won't be sent down unless it's for a rehab assignment. It's worth mentioning that sending a player to Triple-A after coming off the IL does not count against his options.

Which Twins players have 1 minor-league option remaining?

  • Alex Kirilloff, 1B
  • Jose Miranda, 3B
  • Willi Castro, UT
  • Bailey Ober, RHP
  • Jhoan Duran, RHP
  • Cole Sands, RHP
  • Josh Winder, RHP
  • Trevor Larnach, OF
  • Josh Staumont, RHP

There's a decent chance that Josh Staumont starts the season on the IL and works his way into this mix closer to May. Two other names to keep an eye on are Trevor Larnach and Jose Miranda, both of whom could factor into things pretty heavily if they can prove themselves at Spring Training but neither really have a true everyday spot in the lineup.

This tier is also trickiest for pitchers, as guys like Cole Sands and Josh Winder are guys who could get called up at various points but might not be on the 26-man roster for long. They could also be candidates to bounce between St. Paul and the Majors in less time than the 20 day time period that would cost them an option.

Twins players without minor-league options who don't have to worry

  • Byron Buxton, OF
  • Carlos Correa, SS
  • Max Kepler, OF
  • Carlos Santana, 1B/DH
  • Christian Vázquez, C
  • Kyle Farmer, UT
  • Pablo Lopez, RHP
  • Chris Paddack, RHP
  • Anthony DeSclafani, RHP
  • Caleb Thielbar, LHP

Simply put, these guys are not getting send down to the minors. If anybody from this list ends up at St. Paul it'll be on a rehab assignment. With this group, it's most likely that a trade occurs rather than an internal roster transaction.

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