Deadline’s commercial gluttony brings the All-Star program, start pitcher, and another loyalist to the Twins

Almost a year ago, the twins walked off the trade deadline with a sense of bleak resignation.

It had been clear – for months before that point, frankly – that the squad wouldn’t be a play-off team in 2021 and probably won’t be in 2022 without a major stadium staff overhaul. So the team tackled beloved players, including rookie Jose Berrios and designated hitter Nelson Cruz and refocused on the future.

The mood was noticeably more upbeat on Tuesday, as AL Central’s leading twins brought three pitchers – rookie Tyler Mahley, loyal Michael Vollmer of the Tigers and close-up Jorge Lopez of the Orioles – who could immediately contribute on the field without giving up anyone. active list.

“It feels so much better, and there’s no other way to put it more than that,” said Derek Valvey, head of baseball operations. “…We felt like we were with the group we had in that room, the culture we had, and we wanted to try and add to it and not take it apart.”

The twins’ resistance to being separated from any of their active players was part of the reason all of the club’s deals happened hours before the 5pm deadline on Tuesday. Valvey said the team was working on the Lopez deal late Monday night, but made it official the next morning.

He followed Mahley in the afternoon before Vollmer enjoyed a one-of-a-kind walk home from visiting Target Field – with pool media depicting his every move – less than two hours before his former team faced his new team.

“It looks like we are taking the right steps to increase volume, which is always great. As a player, you want to feel that the front office is putting the best product on the field to help you win the championship.”

Carlos Correa

For Lopez, the twins broke up with four junior bowlers in the league, three of whom have signed free international agents: Ynier Kano, who has been in 10 Twins games this season; 2021 third round of the Kady Povich Selection Project; And the arms of the rookie league Juan Nunez and Juan Rojas.

Lopez warmed up in the eighth inning of the Twins’ 5-3 loss to Detroit on Tuesday night.

For Mahley, minor league players Christian Encarnacion Strand (Five Round Pick 2021) and Spencer Steer (2019 Third Round Pick) as well as minor league bowler Steve Hajjar (Second round pick 2021). For Vollmer, junior bowler Sawyer Gibson Long, who was among the favorites for the sixth round in the 2019 draft.

The twins also made AAA class swaps. Catcher Sandy Lyon will report to the Saints while bowler Ian Hamilton will now be part of the Guardians system.

In the 29-year-old Lopez, the twins earned a 2022 AL All-Star with a 1.68 ERA and 19 saves in the midst of their first full-time role in their seven-year career. The 27-year-old Mahle is a 19 game player this season with a 5-7 record and 4.40 ERA. In the 29-year-old Fulmer, a pulp arm with a 3.20 ERA carries opponents to a .203 strike rate.

And they all bring some sense of familiarity. Vollmer is an Oklahomaman and was a first-round pick in 2011, just as twins star Dylan Bundy. Mahley and Sonny Gray have been in the Reds’ rotation together from 2019-21. Lopez will join fellow Puerto Rican nationals Carlos Correa, Jose Miranda and Giovanni Moran.

“It looks like we’re making the right moves to increase the size of the ball, which is always great,” Correa said. “As a player, you want to feel that the front office is putting the best product on the field to help you win the championship.” . “And so far during that deadline, we feel like they’re doing it. They’re giving us a chance, a better chance, to get out there and compete with the best of them.”

Correa said he had several discussions with Twins manager Rocco Baldelli in the past week or so with his thoughts on what the front office should do on the deadline. Correa’s priority was to protect the “untouchable” Miranda, who had just won the AL Rookie of the month after hitting 353 in July.

One topic that Correa has yet to discuss with the twins, is his long-term future in Minnesota. Correa has options for the next two seasons, and there has been some speculation that the twins might want to trade him on deadline and not risk losing him for free in the off-season. That was never a consideration, Valvey said. Correa just relayed how happy his wife and young son are here, and that’s a big factor in his final decision.

But this is a decision that both parties will come up with for the time being and they will return to it once the twins win the World Championships.

A goal does not seem out of reach after Tuesday’s fortifications.

“It gives you energy. Like, you show up, and you feel like we have a few more guns here than we did the day before,” Baldeli said. “…must be fun for the next couple of months. I know we’re looking forward to it, and [Tuesday did] wonders.”

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