Report: Ervin Santana to sign a one-year, $14 million deal with an AL team

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The Ervin Santana saga is reaching its conclusion.

According to Dionisio Soldevila of ESPN Deportes, Santana will sign a one-year, $14 million contract with an American League team. This report comes less than 24 hours after Soldevila passed along word that a frustrated Santana fired his agent, Bean Stringfellow, and could negotiate his own contract.

FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal reported last night that Santana was looking to sign a one-year deal as soon as possible, preferably with a strong offensive team. If Soldevila’s report from this morning is accurate, we can probably peg the Orioles and Blue Jays as the favorites to be that mystery AL team. However, the Rangers and Mariners have also been mentioned as possibilities this winter. Stay tuned.

Santana, 31, posted a 3.24 ERA and 161/51 K/BB ratio over 211 innings last season. He turned down a one-year, $14.1 million qualifying offer from the Royals in order to test free agency. While he was hoping to cash in after his excellent season, being attached to draft pick compensation has had a major impact on his market.

UPDATE: CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reports that Santana is discussing a one-year, $14 million deal with the Orioles and Blue Jays. There’s also an unidentified National League team (but believed to be the Rockies) which is considered to be “on the fringe” of talks. A deal is expected to come together soon.

Report: Twins sign Erick Aybar to minor-league deal

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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.