It wasn’t a rebuild, but the Twins certainly retooled — to borrow a word from president of baseball operations, Derek Falvey — sending a handful of players to other teams on Friday, including a bit of a shocker: Right-handed pitcher, Jose Berrios, the homegrown Twin who compiled a record of 55-43 with a 4.08 ERA over six seasons. Not bad for someone who just turned 27 in May.
I would rather have seen the Twins part company with Michael Pineda, but clearly Big Mike is not going to generate the return on investment that Berrios is. By all accounts, the Twins have received two good young prospects after they sent Berrios to the Toronto Blue Jays.
Although that was the headline-grabbing trade of the day for the Twins, they also sent J.A. Happ to the St. Louis Cardinals for two pitchers and reliever Hansel Robles to the Boston Red Sox for a pitcher. Including the Nelson Cruz deal, the Twins received a total of seven players — six of them pitchers.
More on Friday’s deals and the players the Twins received, according to MLB.com:
The top-tier talent headlining the Twins’ activity came as part of the Berríos deal, in which Minnesota grabbed a pair of top 70 overall prospects in shortstop/center fielder Austin Martin, the No. 16 prospect in the Majors per MLB Pipeline, and right-hander Simeon Woods Richardson, ranked No. 68.
John Gant — acquired from the Cardinals alongside Double-A left-hander Evan Sisk — has had control issues, but he also owns a history of avoiding barrels and is controllable through next season. Alex Scherff, the return from the Red Sox in exchange for for Robles, owns a 2.45 ERA this season across High-A and Double-A following his transition into the bullpen.
It also was a busy day for Twins Territory as a range of emotions played out across social media during the trade action.
If you are a distraught #MNTwins fan and need some cheering up, look no further than tonight’s opponent and realize it could be worse. The Cardinals are stocking up on washed up left handers JA Happ and Jon Lester. ERA’s 6.77 and 5.02 respectively
— Doug Munson (@TwinsWild16) July 30, 2021
Minnesota is now officially the first state to have 2 Triple AAA baseball teams playing within 15 miles of each other…#MNTwins
— Negative Dave (@neg_dave) July 30, 2021
I’d rather get beaned in the nuts similar to Garver on repeat for 24 hours straight than the #MNTwins trade Buxton.
— Robb Papas (@PapasRobb) July 30, 2021
So if Maeda goes too, Tortuga gets a start this weekend, right? #MNTwins
— WHENESOTA (@WHENESOTA) July 30, 2021
-Meanwhile, baseball was played Friday and the Twins lost to the St. Louis Cardinals, 5-1. No surprise, I guess. It was probably a pretty distracting day for the team. Griffin Jax got the start for the Twins in place of Berrios and he allowed a run over five innings but didn’t figure in the decision. Reliever Tyler Duffey took it on the nose and fell to 2-3.
-Jorge Polanco, Willians Astudillo and Andrelton Simmons had all nine of the Twins’ hits.
-Old friends Kyle Gibson and Eddie Rosario also were dealt on Friday. Gibson is now a member of the Philadelphia Phillies and Rosario was sent to the Atlanta Braves.