Each year, right after the World Series, the rumors begin to fly. Who will be retained? Who will be signed in the market? Who will be traded? All of these questions we attempt to answer.
Even without a big name player needing to be re-signed, and even without a big name player on the trading block, the rumors continue. How will the Twins upgrade at third? What about short? In the bullpen? All three questions will eventually be answered, but for now, we wait.
There have been so many rumors, it has been hard to keep up, let's take a look at some of the names that have been thrown around thus far.
Blake is a free agent.
At 35 Blake is the oldest option at third, and would likely want a three-year deal.
Last season, Blake played for the Indians before being traded to the Dodgers midseason.
Blake hit .274 with 21 home runs and 81 RBI in '08.
Making his home in Iowa during the offseason, and a former Twin, Blake would consider a return.
- Atkins is signed through 2010 with arbitration starting this year.
- Turning 29 this offseason, Atkins is pretty young, and would be 31 when he becomes a free agent.
- It is unclear what would need to be offered as the Rockies received both pitching and hitting for Holliday.
- Atkins hit .286 with 21 home runs and 99 RBI in '08.
- Some question his hitting away from Coors Field.
- Kouzmanoff is signed through 2012 with arbitration after the '09 season.
- He'll turn 28 this summer, and is the youngest option out of the mentioned players.
- It is unclear what the Twins would need to offer. Not many rumors have included his name.
- Kouzmanoff hit .260 with 23 home runs and 83 RBI in '08.
- Beltre is signed through the 2008 season.
- Beltre will turn 30 this season, so is somewhat young.
- His name came up in the season, but has not surfaced since.
- Beltre hit .266 with 25 home runs and 77 RBI in '08.
- Hardy is signed through 2010 with arbitration starting this season.
- He will turn 27 late this upcoming season, so ifs still very young.
- The Twins would likely need to offer pitching, and will likely need to wait until Sabathia signs.
- Hardy hit .283 with 24 home runs and 74 RBI in '08.
- Escobar is signed through 2013 with arbitration.
- He will be 26 through this season, so ifs the youngest named option.
- It will depend on how the Peavy trade works out. If the Braves miss out, they'll need pitching.
- Escobar hit .288 with 10 home runs and 60 RBI in '08.
- Cabrera is a free agent.
- Cabrera is 34, and is the oldest named option.
- Cabrera hit .281 with eight home runs and 57 RBI in '08.
The Twins reportedly had interest in signing LaTroy Hawkins before he was retained by the Astros. They never had a chance to talk to him.
- The Twins also reportedly had interest in Huston Street before he was included in the Matt Holliday deal.