Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN Twin Cities reports that the Twins have inquired about watching free agent reliever Rafael Soriano throw.
Soriano, 35, faltered in the closer’s role for the Nationals last season. He was taken out of the role in early September when he allowed runs in three consecutive appearances, the last of which included surrendering a game-tying ninth-inning home run to Phillies light-hitting outfielder Ben Revere. Soriano finished with a 3.16 ERA, 32 saves in 39 opportunities, and a 59/19 K/BB ratio in 62 innings.
The veteran reliever remains unsigned presumably because of his age and declining fastball velocity. The Twins are set with Glen Perkins as their closer, but Soriano could potentially share some late innings with Brian Duensing.
Rookie first baseman Pete Alonso has launched what appears to be the beginning of an auspicious career, made all the more notable by the 50 home runs he’s produced for the Mets so far this season. The All-Star slugger pushed his home run streak to four straight games on Friday, collecting no. 50 on an eighth-inning fastball from the Reds’ Sal Romano.
It’s just the latest of a long line of accomplishments for the 24-year-old infielder. Entering Friday’s series opener against Cincinnati, the first-time All-Star carried a .266/.366/.590 batting line with a league-leading 49 homers, 113 RBI, a .956 OPS and 4.9 fWAR through 648 plate appearances. Among those who are still rounding out their rookie seasons in 2019, he ranks first in home runs and fWAR by a long shot: the White Sox’ Eloy Jiménez is second in home runs with 28 dingers, while the Astros’ Yordan Álvarez plays second fiddle in fWAR with 3.7 Wins Above Replacement.
Even more remarkable: Alonso is the second rookie in MLB history to deliver at least 50 home runs in a single season. The first? Aaron Judge, who clubbed a jaw-dropping 52 homers for the Yankees in 2017.