July 31, 2021

Twins trade Jose Berrios, Happ and others on busy deadline day

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.

Extra innings…

-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.


Hi, I’m Rolf Boone, Twins fan.

I became a fan of the Minnesota Twins after a friendly wager in the early 1980s. I survived Ron Davis, the meltdown in Cleveland, Phil Bradley at the Kingdome and then marveled at a rising generation of stars and two World Series wins in 1987 and 1991. Brad Radke made the 1990s bearable, while Kirby Puckett’s eye injury, exit from the game and eventual death made it almost too much to bear. The new century ushered in more talent — Joe Mauer, Johan Santana, Joe Nathan, Torii Hunter, Justin Morneau — and consecutive seasons of playoff baseball, followed by consecutive seasons of losing baseball. A winning season returned in 2015. So here we are. Go Twins.