|Joe Nathan converted|
14 of 17 save
opportunities in 2011.
If they do — and I rather expect they will re-sign him — it will be for less than $10 million.
What $10 million? Because that would be the real cost of exercising the option. By declining the option, the Twins are obligated to pay Nathan a $2 million buyout.
Nathan will turn 37 next month, and 2010 was far and away the worst season of his career. Even in the second half, in which he was much better than before the All-Star break, his ERA was roughly two runs a game higher than we're used to seeing.
I don't know how much of a market there will be for Nathan this winter. The Twins are betting it will be slow enough that they can retain him at a significantly lower salary.