Twins sign closer Glen Perkins to contract extension

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Glen Perkins was already under team control through 2015, with a team option for 2016, but the Twins and their 31-year-old closer have agreed to an extension that runs through at least 2017.

Perkins is a Minnesota native who starred for the University of Minnesota and is very active in local charities (along with being a really good, fan-friendly follow on Twitter), so it’s no surprise that he wants to stick around long term.

As part of the reworked contract/extension Perkins will get $4.025 million this season, $4.65 million in 2015, $6.3 million in 2016, and $6.5 million in 2017, with a $6.5 million team option for 2018.

Perkins has established himself as one of baseball’s best left-handed relievers since moving to the bullpen full time in 2011, posting a 2.45 ERA and 220 strikeouts in 195 innings during that time. Last season, in his first year as a full-time closer, he saved 36 games with a 2.30 ERA and 77/15 K/BB ratio in 63 innings while making his first All-Star team.

Helluva pitcher, helluva person, and helluva reasonable contract for the Twins.

Rakuten Golden Eagles sign Jabari Blash

Jabari Blash
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Former Angels outfielder Jabari Blash has signed a one-year deal with the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles of Nippon Professional Baseball, the team announced Friday. Per the Japan Times, the deal is said to be worth around $1.06 million. Blash was released from his contract with the Angels at the end of November.

The 29-year-old outfielder has had a rough go of it in the majors, where he failed to duplicate the promising results he delivered in the minors. While he consistently batted above .250 with 20-30 home runs per season at the Double- and Triple-A level, he petered out in back-to-back gigs with the Padres and Angels and slumped toward a .103/.200/.128 finish across 45 PA for Anaheim in 2018.

The hope, of course, is that the environment in NPB will help him get a better handle on his issues at the plate — in a best case scenario, resulting in a full-scale transformation that could make him more marketable to MLB teams in the future. To that end, Blash expects to be utilized as a cleanup batter in the Eagles’ lineup and will focus on assisting the club as they make a run toward the Japan Series.