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Free agents continue to sign, Twins yet to move the needle

Are the Twins in the mix to get Josh Donaldson?

Are the Twins going to pull the trigger and surprise fans with a marquee free-agent signing? Four full days into the MLB Winter Meetings in San Diego and many of the big free agents have been spoken for, and while the rich get richer the Twins have yet to move the needle for a fan base starving for more. 

  • Gerrit Cole is going to the Yankees. 
  • Stephen Strasburg is staying with the Nationals. 
  • Anthony Rendon is headed to the Angels. 
  • Yasmani Grandal signed with the White Sox. 
  • Zack Wheeler agreed with the Phillies. 
  • Didi Gregorius to the Phillies. 
  • Mike Moustakas to the Reds
  • Cole Hamels to the Braves. 
  • Rick Porcello to the Mets. 

According to CBS Sports' rankings of the top-50 free agents, only four of the top 10 remain available: Josh Donaldson (No. 4), Madison Bumgarner (No. 6), Hyun-Jin Ryu (No. 8), and Dallas Keuchel (No. 10). 

The Twins have been linked to all four, with the latest report from the Star Tribune's La Velle Neal III late Wednesday night saying the Twins "continue to pursue" Donaldson. But is Donaldson interested in Minnesota?

Joel Sherman of the New York Post says the Dodgers and Rangers are the leaders, with the Phillies and Braves also in the mix. Sherman makes no mention of the Twins, but The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal (paywall) does, along with the same four teams Sherman mentioned. 

Rosenthal says Donaldson is seeking the largest possible guaranteed deal. Will the Twins break the bank for a 34-year-old slugger who is considered among the best defensive third basemen in the league? Rosenthal expects Donaldson to get $25 million per season, so a four-year deal would cost Minnesota $100 million. 

At this point, Twins Territory is going to be up in arms in their club doesn't find a way to move the needle by landing Donaldson, Bumgarner, Ryu or Keuchel. Anyone else and the names just don't pop, and this is a 101-win team that severely lacked pitching when it needed it most last season. 

Trades remain possible, and it was reported Wednesday that the Marlins are interested in outfielder Eddie Rosario. But can the Twins sweeten the offer to convince Miami to part with Sandy Alcantara or Caleb Smith? According to the Miami Herald, it's going to take a lot to get the Marlins to trade any of their young starters. 

For now, Twins Territory will have to wait and see what unfolds. 

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