December 12, 2008

Wigginton non-tendered, Update

Just hours before the deadline to offer contract to players, Alyson Footer of reports that the Houston Astros decided to non-tender third baseman Ty Wiggington.

His name should be familiar to many. He has been linked to the Twins for a few years in trade rumors since the Tampa Bay Rays traded him to Houston before the July trade deadline in 2007. More recently, La Velle E. Neal III of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune said during this weeks Winter Meetings down in Las Vegas that his name has come up in team discussions. He said that the Twins referred to him as a "gamer" and we all know that those players are generally viewed highly by the Twins brass (ei. Nick Punto).

Although the Twins at this point in time don't feel obligated to still upgrade third base, I am sure that they will look into Wiggington. Although his home/away stats are completely alarming, he did hit left-handers very well last year from the right-side of the plate, which was considered (by m any) to be one of the biggest needs heading into the off-season.

He is a career .270/.330/.460 hitter with a career 105 OPS+. If you lay out his numbers to a 162 game season, he'd average 59 XBH's (23 home runs) and 79 RBI per season.

Wiggington just turned 31-years-old, which means that he would be a fine player to offer a long-term contract to. The team balked at giving Casey Blake a third year due to the fact that he would be 38-years-old at the end of the deal. Although I don't see the Twins giving Wiggington a huge deal, but a two-year deal with a third year option is probably what the Twins will offer.

Perhaps a two-year $14 million deal with a third year vesting option that could bring the deal to be worth $22 million. Is that too much, too little? I think that's definitely something the Twins will at the very least look at.

Update 11:40 PM: I just saw that Lance Cormier, John Bale, Clay Hensley, Joe Nelson and Scott Proctor were all non-tendered by their teams. I can see the Twins have a good deal of interest in all five. All have reasons for being non-tendered though. So all would be risks, but if they don't cost a lot, why not?