Seems like the Twins just never learn.
Despite me suggesting that the Twins should go find a cheap alternative as a closer, the Twins have decided that they just needed to have a proven closer as they re-signed Matt Capps to a 1-year, $4.5 million contract with a $6 million option for 2013 ($250,000 buyout).
My first thought is that the Twins have a habit of sticking to familiar players, and this is starting to drive me crazy. Supposedly Capps had a sore arm for most of the season and that was the cause of his poor year, and if that is the case, then maybe this signing won’t look so bad. Capps has been a bit hit-or-miss for the past 3 years, but he’s certainly had more hits than misses in his career. If he can get his strikeouts back in the 6-7 K/9 range, he could be just fine.
Still, I think I would have preferred that the Twins had let him walk, collect the supplemental draft pick from losing him to another team, and then go after another reliever. Here’s a short list without much thought behind the players.
Each pitcher I’ve listed does have his own flaws, but they all likely would have been cheaper than Capps and wouldn’t have cost a draft pick at all. However, the Twins decided to stick with the familiar player. On a related note, it looks like they’re going to do the same thing with Michael Cuddyer, rather than go with my preferred pick of Josh Willingham. There’s still a chance to sign a few cheap relievers (and who knows, Jared Burton and Jason Bulger may emerge from the minor-league signing pile the Twins have already made), but I feel like the Twins could have done better than Capps. There’s still a full season to determine if my judgment of this contract is correct, however.