Monday, November 18, 2013

Waiting for a pitcher

The Twins, it was repeatedly reported and tweeted out of the general managers meetings last week, are serious about landing starting pitching. Market-setting serious.

The Twins were said to be in pursuit of Bronson Arroyo, a soft-tossing righty who works 200 inning every year and will turn 37 in February. They were said to have offered Ricky Nolasco, a younger (turns 31 in December) and harder thrower, a four-year deal (one report said the Twins were willing to go five years, which is a dangerously rare length for a pitcher).

They've even been connected to Matt Garza, who began his career with the Twins, although I'll believe that when I see it.

Nothing concrete has happened yet, and I rather expect nothing concrete will happen until there's a resolution on the Japanese posting system.

The agreement under which MLB clubs bid for the exclusive negotiating rights with Japanese veterans has expired, and the word last week was that the Japanese leagues were "unable" to respond to the proposal made by MLB. It's quite possible that there will be no posting this winter — which would keep Japanese star Masahiro Tanaka from coming to the states.

Tanaka is the big get of the market — if he's in the market. Somebody figures to spend about $100 million to land him between posting fee and his contract. If he's not available, that $100 million will likely be redirected toward other free agent pitchers.

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