Twins re-sign Mike Pelfrey to two-year, $11 million deal

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Mike Pelfrey posted an ugly 5.19 ERA (78 ERA+) in 152 2/3 innings this past season for the Twins and owns a 4.48 career ERA (90 career ERA+) in 1,049 major league frames. But the Minnesota front office apparently feels he has some untapped potential.

Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reports that the Twins have re-signed Pelfrey to a two-year, $11 million free agent contract. The deal also carries another $3.5 million in performance-based incentives.

The Yankees were said to have interest in Pelfrey last month and a few other clubs were linked, but it sure feels like the Twins bid against themselves in offering him a two-year pact. Pelfrey joins Ricky Nolasco, Kevin Correia, Phil Hughes and Vance Worley in an improved-but-still-shaky Minnesota rotation.

Madison Bumgarner has been competing in rodeos under a fake name

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The Athletic’s Andrew Baggarly and Zach Buchanan report that Diamondbacks starter Madison Bumgarner has been competing in rodeos under a fake name as recently as December. The fake name is Mason Saunders. Bumgarner explains that “Mason” is shortened from “Madison,” while “Saunders” is his wife’s maiden name.

Bumgarner — err, Saunders — and one of his rodeo partners, Jaxson Tucker, won $26,560 in a team-roping rodeo competition in December. The Rancho Rio Arena posted a picture of the pair on Facebook, highlighting that they roped four steers in 31.36 seconds.

As Baggarly and Buchanan point out, Bumgarner also pointed out in a rodeo competition last March, just a couple days before pitching in a Cactus League game versus the Athletics, back when he was still with the Giants.

Bumgarner suffered bruised ribs and a left shoulder AC sprain in 2017 when he got into a dirt bike accident. Given that, Bumgarner’s latest extracurricular activity does raise a concern for the Diamondbacks, who inked him to a five-year, $85 million contract two months ago. Baggarly and Buchanan asked Bumgarner about such a concern. Bumgarner referred them to the club’s managing partner Ken Kendrick. Kendrick directed them to GM Mike Hazen. Hazen declined speaking about “specific contract language.” For what it’s worth, Bumgarner says he primarily uses his right hand to rope.

The jig is up on Bumgarner’s hobby. He jokingly said to The Athletic’s pair, “I’m nervous about this interview right now.” He added, “I’m upset with both you two.”