Nov. 17, 2016
Minnesota Twins Trade Block: Ervin Santana
The win/loss record for Ervin Santana last year wasn't a very good one, but what can you expect from a guy playing for a 100-loss Minnesota Twins' team? At just 7-11 he may have paid tribute to Slurpees yet hurt his trade stock in doing so. Santana is still a major candidate to get traded this winter as the Twins will hopefully look to unload a few veterans at some point this offseason in favor of younger players.
It's actually pretty stellar what Santana accomplished last season even with the bad record. He had a 3.38 ERA, 124 ERA+, and a few other good numbers along the way. The dreadful free agent market for pitchers makes him a guy many teams would like on their roster. His $13.5 million guaranteed over the next two seasons may look large, but really isn't if you have taken a look at any new contracts paid out to pitchers in recent seasons.
Several teams jump out immediately as candidates to acquire Santana. The Los Angeles Dodgers are a fit as are the Texas Rangers. Santana would fit in nicely behind their aces with the only pressure being that he plays for a team already loaded with talent. A completely different scenario would be Santana ending up with the Miami Marlins, possibly becoming the team's number one starter when he does.
Other options are out there too. The Baltimore Orioles need pitching. The same is true of the Houston Astros. Between the two, Houston has the major advantage with a farm system much more desirable to look at than what Baltimore has coming up. Even with all of the recent trades they've made, the Astros have a list of prospects the Twins can envy.
Santana looks more like a midseason trade candidate to me in an average season. This year, with Jeremy Hellickson accepting the qualifying offer and the ageless Rich Hill as the top starting pitcher without a home, I see the chances of Santana getting dealt as far greater. Whether as a number one, two, three, or even later in a rotation, Santana is a guy travelers of the trade block will inquire about.