Rangers GM Jon Daniels backed all this up with a lot of “we’re happy with our team” talk, but it’s not often you hear a GM say that they’re frustrated at how their offseason is going:
… we were in on Greinke. We would’ve liked to have had him, but it didn’t work out. We were interested in bringing Josh back, didn’t work out … Is there some frustration? Sure. We’re competitors too, and this is the time of year we try to do what we do.
So, do they take that frustration out on a big contract for Michael Bourn? Or maybe Nick Swisher? Or are the Rangers truly the AL West’s Yankees: that team that, each winter, people think is due for a fall while its competitors get better, only to get into the season and once again find themselves in first place?
The Twins have reportedly signed free agent shortstop Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal, LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune reported Friday. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman adds that the deal comes with a potential $1.25 million if Aybar reaches the majors, with additional incentives based on plate appearances. He’ll be able to opt out on March 27. The team has yet to confirm the signing.
Aybar, 34, is now four years removed from his career year in 2014. He’s been in a state of steady decline since then, slashing just .234/.300/.348 with seven home runs and 11 stolen bases over 370 plate appearances for the Padres in 2017. His poor performance wasn’t helped by a fractured left foot, either, which cost him almost six weeks on the disabled list.
Still, the Twins see something promising in the veteran infielder, and reportedly intend to use him as another utility option this spring. Per Neal, Aybar will join fellow backup infielders Eduardo Escobar and Ehire Adrianza and may even (temporarily) take over for Miguel Sano at third base if Sano isn’t able to shape up for the role by Opening Day.