Scott Miller of CBSsports.com is reporting that the Minnesota Twins have made a contract offer to free-agent pitcher Jarrod Washburn.
Terms of the deal offered are not known, though considering the market it’s hard to imagine him turning much down. He’s a Wisconsin native who wants to play closer to home.
The offer is believed to be a one-year deal for probably around $6-7 million.
In my opinion, a signing like this would represent just the latest failed attempt to add free-agent pitching. The Twins have been down this road before with Ramon Ortiz, Sidney Ponson and Livan Hernandez. The difference between signing Ortiz or Hernandez in previous years and signing Washburn this year would be that there were actually better, reasonably priced options available. It’s a buyer’s market.
Washburn had a solid year last season, posting a 3.78 ERA while going 9-9 in 28 starts. He was outstanding for four months in Seattle, but collapsed down the stretch after a trade to Detroit.
It was a nice year last season, and a knee injury for which he had surgery for in October can be blamed for his struggles in the final two months. But outside of his four months with Seattle – in a great pitcher’s ballpark – he’s been mediocre for the last five years or so.
With holes at third base and the need for an ace, this solves neither of those needs. The Twins would have been much better off taking the plunge and signing Rich Harden, who signed a one-year, $6.5 million deal with Texas. Harden may get hurt a lot, but when he’s on the mound, he’s as tough as anyone. And the Twins have the pitching depth with Brian Duensing, Francisco Liriano and Glen Perkins to absorb an injury to the rotation anyway.
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