Report: the Twins are close to a “major free agent signing”

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Tim Dierkes of MLB Trade Rumors is hearing some buzz:

 

It’d be somewhat surprising to see the Twins sign a “major” free agent, as they have not been in the deep end of the free agent pool for a few years. But as Dierkes notes, the Twins have been linked to several free agent pitchers in recent days, including Matt Garza, Bronson Arroyo and Ricky Nolasco. There was also a report linking them and Jarrod Saltalamacchia, who would make sense now that Joe Mauer has been moved to first base.

Because it’s the Twins, my money would be on a soft-tossing righty. They love soft-tossing righties.

Report: Giants in “serious discussions” with Reds to acquire Billy Hamilton

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Zach Buchanan of the Cincinnati Enquirer reports that the Giants are engaged in “serious discussions” with the Reds to acquire center fielder Billy Hamilton. Talks are apparently advanced enough that a deal could be completed before the end of the Winter Meetings on Thursday.

It’s no secret that the Giants would like to make an upgrade in the outfield this offseason, as the club has also been linked to Red Sox center fielder Jackie Bradley, Jr. Currently, the Giants’ outfield consists of Denard Span, Hunter Pence, and Jarrett Parker.

Hamilton, 27, owns a meager .248/.298/.334 batting line across parts of five seasons in the majors with the Reds. However, he has plenty of speed, having stolen at least 56 bases in each of the last four seasons. Hamilton is also well-regarded for his defense, which would be a boon at spacious AT&T Park.

Hamilton is in his second of three years of arbitration eligibility. He’s projected to earn $5 million for this coming season. Buchanan notes that the Rangers are also interested in potentially acquiring Hamilton.