One of the big-name free agents that remain available on the open market is Yu Darvish.
The former Texas Rangers pitcher also featured for Los Angeles Dodgers during their playoff run, but he wasn’t very good. In fact, he struggled during the World Series against the Houston Astros. But despite those struggles, no one expected him to be unsigned until late January.
Maybe the slow free agent market has taken a role here. Names such as Jake Arrieta, Lorenzo Cain, and others remain unsigned as well. But Darvish could be close to signing. There are around five or six teams interested in the Japanese pitcher, but one, in particular, should do everything in their power to sign him. We are talking about the Minnesota Twins.
The Twins are one of the up-and-coming teams in the American League. They are not on the level of the Houston Astros, the New York Yankees or the Cleveland Indians yet. However, they are getting there. The Twins have lots of interesting players – Brian Dozier, Miguel Sano and Byron Buxton, just to name a few – but their biggest weakness is their rotation. And Darvish would go a long way to solve those woes.
The 31-year-old right-hander didn’t have his best year in 2017, but the numbers still looked solid. He delivered a 10-12 mark, with a 3.86 ERA and 209 strikeouts for both the Rangers and the Dodgers. That hasn’t even been his best year, but those numbers would represent a considerable improvement for Minnesota. He already knows what it means to pitch in the American League, leaving a 52-39 record with a 3.42 ERA.
For what is worth, the Twins had a 4.59 ERA as a team last season, a figure that ranked 19th in all of baseball. They also ranked 24th in quality starts. And they finished 29th in strikeouts, with just 1,166. In short? They were below average, to downright bad this past season. So they need a few reinforcements on the rotation, and adding an ace would be quite useful, too.
Out of the pitchers that are available on the open market, Darvish makes the most sense. He has a lot of experience in the AL, and there’s no doubt his presence would bolster Minnesota’s rotation considerably.