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minnesota twins logoAccording to Chris Cotillo – and later ostensibly confirmed by the man, himself, on Twitter – the Minnesota Twins have agreed to terms with free agent pitcher Ricky Nolasco. (Great reporting by the young Mr. Cotillo, by the way.)

One of the more attractive arms on the market thanks to consistently good peripherals and a solid 2013 season, Nolasco was made all the more attractive by the fact that he wasn’t tied to draft pick compensation. Terms aren’t yet known, but you can assume it’s going to be a four-year deal for a touch more than the Cubs paid Edwin Jackson. That’s a guess, but an educated one. Anything more than that, and we’ll have seen the continued upward shifting of the market – which, I suppose, is to say I won’t be surprised to be wrong.

From the Cubs’ perspective, Nolasco to the Twins is pretty much an ideal outcome. First of all, the Cubs weren’t believed to be in on Nolasco, so they didn’t lose a potential target here. Further, the Twins were rumored to be in on several of the mid-tier pitching targets the Cubs might go after. Although signing Nolasco doesn’t necessarily remove the Twins completely from that market, it does give them one of the arms they’ve been seeking – and it wasn’t an arm that interested the Cubs. Finally, the Twins aren’t rumored to be involved in any Jeff Samardzija trade talks, meaning that, if the Cubs do decide to trade Samardzija, they didn’t lose a suitor when Nolasco signed. And perhaps there’s a team or two out there that just lost out on Nolasco, and now feel an inch more incentivized to make a serious bid for Samardzija.

Nolasco’s signing comes on the eve of Thanksgiving, and a couple weeks before the Winter Meetings, which is annually the most signing-and-trade-active time of the offseason.

  • Blackhawks1963

    My guess is the few remaining “good” free agent starting pitchers are about to be gobbled up quickly.

    • Chris S

      pun intended?

  • MightyBear

    I hope no one signs Scott Baker, except the Cubs that is.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

      I’d take Baker back, but hopefully at a much lower price this go around.

      • MightyBear

        I don’t mind the Cubs paying him but I hope it will be a lower base salary with incentives for innings pitched. He should get paid if he performs like I think he will. If he gets hurt again, I don’t think the Cubs should have to pay him to rehab. They already did once.

        • Jesse

          I’d pass honestly. First time around didn’t really pan out.

          • MightyBear

            This is the problem with Cub fans and previous Cubs organizations. Things don’t go according to plan so give up and pack it in. The Cardinals waited two years for Chris Carpenter to rehab from TJS. He pitched lights out for 4 years and helped them win a championship in 2006. Then he had to have TJS again, they waited another two years and lo and behold he pitched lights out for 3 years and helped them win another championship in 2011.

            Baker is less of a risk this year because he was able to pitch at the end of last year. He should be even more back to normal this year which is a TOR pitcher.

            • Jesse

              Easy. It’s just my personal opinion. And don’t compare Baker’s situation to Carpenter’s. Carpenter was a Ace before his TJ. Baker was not even close to that level.

              • Voice of Reason

                But baker was one of the top starters in the american league at the end of his twins tenure and before getting hurt.

  • Scott Baker

    About that..

  • Troy

    Can Shin Soo Choo pitch?

    • Kramden

      When he gets on a train, does it become the Shin Soo Choo Choo Choo?

  • WI Jeff

    Attending a Kane County Game in Beloit, WI this summer, I spoke with Scott Bakers Family. Very nice people. The wife said they really enjoyed their time in MN and miss it. I am sure the will support the husband where ever the job takes him, but insinuated a desire to reunite with the Twins organization…

  • http://bleachernation.com woody

    Good grief the price of pitching is going through the roof. Some team will jump in and scoop Baker up for sure. I have mixed emotions about the Cubs resigning him. Really there is not going to be any clarity about anything until this Shark situation is resolved. With the craziness that is going on in the FA market we can pretty much assume that if the Cubs don’t land Tanaka and trade Shark then there is a void to be filled. And Bakers command looked pretty good at the end of the year. I think his velocity should increase this year. But most importantly he showed me that he knows how to pitch. And how to set up a hitter. That’s a skill that Travis Wood has learned nicely. To me what is more important than the pitching situation is to get Baez, Bryant and Alcantara a chance to play a couple of months at Wrigley. Getting their feet wet in 2014 would increase the likely hood that if the Cubs get a free agent pitcher or two next winter that we can compete in 2015. Personally I am frustrated with all this talk of 2015 being a wash too.

  • http://deepcenterfield.blogspot.com Jason Powers

    Nolasco: 4/48 – 5th is a club option at 13M. Player vesting 2016-17 on innings pitched. Buyout of 1M.

    Minnesota signed their version of Edwin Jackson.

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  • Cubbie in NC

    Did I miss the comment about how now the Twins are less likely to sign Hughes??

    • CubFan Paul

      The Twins are/were in the market for two pitchers

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