It was an offseason of change for the Minnesota Twins, but not every move was easy to make.
Carlos Correa’s whirlwind free agency journey was certainly something but it cost the Twins nothing more than dollars and cents. Improving the pitching staff was a little more complicated and came at what could be argued as an equal or greater price than what the price for Correa was.
Minnesota gave Correa a $200 million contract, while the price for acquiring potential ace Pablo Lopez was fan-favorite Luis Arráez.
Arráez was traded to the Miami Marlins back in Janauary, and it’s a trade that has so far paid off for both teams. Lopez started on Opening Day for Minnesota, going 5.1 innings without giving up a run and securing the first win of the year. Arráez has started the year batting .563 with nine hits and a 1.213 OPS.
It’s early, but the trade is already feeling like a win-win for both sides.
The deal has the potential to get even sweeter for the Twins, as the front office was able to pry top prospect Jose Salas away from the Marlins in the deal. So while Lopez is paying off now for Minnesota, Salas can keep the riches rolling in at a later date.
But what matters now is the reunion in Miami between the Twins and Arráez. For the first time, Arráez stepped to the plate in game featuring the Twins but was wearing another uniform.
Watch: Luis Arraez takes first at-bat against Twins (Video)
Things got off to a bumpy start for Arraez, as he was late getting into the batter’s box and violated the pitch clock rule. So before he even truly stepped up to the plate to face his former team, Arraez was already down in the count.
A few pitches later, he popped out to Trevor Larnach in left field. How the plate appearance went was almost beside the point, as it was truly the end of an era for fans.
Before the game, Arraez spoke with Bally Sports North and spoke fondly of his time with the Twins going as far as to say he missed his teammates and the fans he left behind.
The series in Miami will be bookended by emotional reunions.
Arráez took the first at-bat of the series against his former team, while Pablo Lopez will start the final game of the series on the mound against the Marlins .