An interesting nugget appeared in La Velle E. Neal III's Twins blog at the Star Tribune on Monday, as the longtime beat writer wrote that talks between the Mets and Twins stalled because the Mets wanted Byron Buxton included in any deal for starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard.
"They also inquired about Mets righthander Noah Syndergaard before being turned off by New York’s high asking price, which included outfielder Byron Buxton," Neal wrote.
ESPN's Jeff Passan writes that the trade market for Syndergaard is shrinking:
"Certainly the gap could narrow as the deadline approaches, though there is increasing skepticism in some circles that the Mets will deal Syndergaard, especially considering the possibility that he can recoup value over the next two months and be shopped again this winter."
That said, ESPN's Buster Olney reports that "other teams are aware of the tension in the relationship" between Syndergaard and the Mets' leadership, and "believe it will be a factor in New York's decision before the deadline."
On Monday night, Syndergaard started a tweet by saying "In times when it feels like nobody wants you..."
More bullpen help for the Twins?
Neal says Minnesota has turned its attention to back to the bullpen, where they have until 3 p.m. Wednesday to add depth to a struggling unit. Minnesota already upgraded the 'pen by trading for Miami closer Sergio Romo, who has a 3.58 ERA and 1.22 WHIP in 38 appearances this season.
The 38-year-old right-hander doesn't throw hard but has a nasty slider and changeup that's helped him convert 17 of 18 save chances.
One name the Twins have been linked to is Blue Jays hard-throwing closer Ken Giles, but he's now hurt with elbow inflammation and USA Today's Bob Nightengale believes the injury will kill his trade value until the winter.
Nightengale also reports that Rays left-handers Robby Ray, a starter, and Andrew Chafin, a reliever, could be dealt by the deadline. It's unclear if the Twins have any interest in either. Chafin has a 7.27 ERA in nine relief appearances this month, so he's not exactly on a role that would stabilize a similarly shaky Twins bullpen.