Twins reach arbitration settlement with two key players

Minnesota is finally spending some money, but they're keeping it in-house.

Division Series - Minnesota Twins v Houston Astros - Game One
Division Series - Minnesota Twins v Houston Astros - Game One / Brace Hemmelgarn/GettyImages
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We're about to arrive at another offseason milestone, as teams are hammering our arbitration settlements with eligible players ahead of this week's deadline. Arbitration hearings will be happening with any player who doesn't reach a settlement with his team, and the Minnesota Twins have more than a few boxes to check.

Minnesota tendered seven players back in November, with each player varying in value according to initial projections.

  • Kyle Farmer - $6.6
  • Ryan Jeffers - $3.2M
  • Caleb Thielbar - $3M
  • Willi Castro - $2.3M
  • Alex Kirilloff - $1.7M
  • Jorge Alcala - $1M
  • Nick Gordon - $1M

All of these players make sense to bring back next season, especially with a reduced payroll handcuffing the front office's ability to improve the roster in free agency. Minnesota isn't going to arbitration with all seven of these guys, though, as a pair have already settled.

Twins settle with Ryan Jeffers and Caleb Thielbar ahead of arbitration deadline

Update: The Twins reached settlements with six of their seven tendered players. Only Nick Gordon wasn't able to settle, which means he will go to a hearing to determine his salary next season.

Before the deadline the Twins reached settlments with Ryan Jeffers and Caleb Thielbar. Both players are expected to play key roles for Minnesota next year, especially with it looking more and more unlikely that big moves are on the horizon.

Jeffers was projected at $3.2 million while Thielbar was projected to make $3 million, so between the two things settled right where we expected.

Bringing them both back was a no-brainer move, especially with how much Jeffers might factor into the day-to-day catching duties moving forward. He formed a nice tandem with Christian Vazquez last season but it became clear that Jeffers is the future, so long as he continues to build on his early success.

Thielbar was counted on to bolster the bullpen last year, and that's a role he'll continue to settle into this season. With it looking increasingly unlikely that the Twins will make a meaningful addition to the bullpen, Thielbar's development becomes that much more of a factor.

The work isn't over, as the Twins tendered seven players ahead of the November deadline. Kyle Farmer remains the biggest and most intriguing name, as well as the most expensive. Minnesota is expected to shop Farmer, alongside Max Kepler and Jorge Polanco, as trade currency to improve the roster.

Incentive to trade Farmer is rooted in how much he'll cost, which depends on what happens in arbitration. If he gets the $6.6 million he's projected for, that would essentially take a free agent signing off the board for hte Twins.

Whether the team chalks him up to that and keeps him, or trades him to save some money, is yet to be seen. Both Willi Castro and Nick Gordon are low-cost arbitration candidates who are projected to make half of what Farmer will but do essentially the same thing.

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