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Report: Twins already talking to Zack Wheeler's camp

Wheeler might be the third-best starter available in free agency.

The Twins' offseason pursuit of quality starting pitchers is no secret, and the club is already speaking with reps for free agents at the general managers' meetings in Scottsdale, Arizona. 

According to Darren Wolfson, the Twins have already had talks with free agent right-hander Zack Wheeler's camp. 

Wheeler was a stud for the Mets last season, but his track record prior to 2019 is filled with injuries. He missed the 2015 and 2016 seasons after undergoing Tommy John surgery, then posted a 5.21 ERA in 2017 before putting together a really good 2018 with a 3.31 ERA in 182.1 innings. 

Wheeler followed that up with a 3.96 ERA in 31 starts last season, and now he's likely going to get a healthy, multi-year contract as one of the top free-agent starters on the market. 

While those numbers do not compare to those of Gerrit Cole or Stephen Strasburg, Wheeler could be considered the third-best pitcher in this year's free-agent crop with a powerful fastball that averaged a career-high 96.7 mph last season, according to FanGraphs.

New York tendered Wheeler a $17.8 million qualifying offer, but MLB.com's Jon Paul Morosi reports that Wheeler will not accept it by Thursday's deadline. 

The Twins will also find out Thursday if Jake Odorizzi accepts or rejects a $17.8 million qualifying offer for the 2020 season. 

Meanwhile, Dan Hayes of The Athletic reports that the Twins are interested in bringing back 37-year-old, right-handed reliever Sergio Romo. 

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