The Major League Baseball winter meetings are fueling a lot of moving and shaking with free agents. On Tuesday, Francisco Liriano agreed to a three-year, $39 million contract to resume his career with the Pittsburgh Pirates, according to ESPN.
According to the Pioneer Press, the ex-Twins left-hander is 23-18 with a 3.20 earned-run average the past two seasons with the Pirates. The Twins were rumored to have been interested in reuniting with Liriano.
With Liriano off the market, there are only three big-name starting pitchers remaining on the qualifying offer market: Ervin Santana, James Shields and Max Scherzer. Jon Lester is mulling offers in the six-year, $150 million range; the Pioneer Press reports predicts Scherzer's offers will surge to the $150 million range, too.
That leaves Santana as the target most likely to peak the Twins' interest. Minnesota attempted to sign him last year, but he took a one-year deal to pitch for the Atlanta Braves.
The Twins would have to give up a second-round draft pick in 2015 to sign Santana or any other qualifying offer free agent.
For more Twins updates from the winter meetings, check out the Star Tribune's Q&A with new manager Paul Molitor.