It’s been a busy, productive last couple of days for the Minnesota Twins’ front office.
A day after striking a deal with designated hitter Nelson Cruz, the Twins came to an agreement with reliever Alex Colome on a one-year deal with a mutual option, sources confirmed.
A source confirmed the deal will pay Colome $5 million in 2021. If the Twins exercise the option and Colome declines, he will earn $5 million, forgoing a $1.25 buyout. If the Twins decline the option, Colome will earn $6.25 million and if both sides accept the option, the deal will be for two-years, $10.5 million.
The move gives the Twins a big arm for the backend of their bullpen. Colome, 32, posted a 2.27 earned run average in 83 games over the past two seasons with the White Sox, picking up 42 saves in the process. In the shortened 2020 season, the righty had a 0.81 ERA in his 22 1/3 innings pitched. He didn’t give up a home run in his 21 appearances.
Colome is plenty familiar with Twins manager Rocco Baldelli, beginning his career in Tampa Bay, where the two overlapped when Baldelli joined the Rays’ coaching staff. In 2016, he was an All-Star and in 2017, he led the American League with 47 saves for the Rays.
The move gives the Twins a right-handed arm to pair with Taylor Rogers, who had primarily served as the Twins’ closer in the past two seasons. Baldelli hasn’t explicitly named a closer since he’s arrived in town, and he likely won’t use that label now, even though the Twins have added another one to the mix. Tyler Duffey will continue to be another late-inning option for the manager.
“We haven’t named a closer at any point in the last couple of years, and we’re not going to do that going forward,” Baldelli said in December. “We want to pitch our guys when we think they’re going to help us win a particular game, maybe in a particular inning with a particular set of hitters coming up, so our guys know that.”
The Twins will add Colome a bullpen that lost late-inning options in Trevor May, Tyler Clippard and Sergio Romo this offseason. May signed a new deal with the Mets; the other two are still free agents. The Twins also non-tendered Matt Wisler, who subsequently signed with the Giants earlier this offseason.
The Twins would seem to be nearly done with their offseason additions, though if they do continue to add, it would likely be in the form of pitching. In recent weeks, they have brought in reliever Hansel Robles, starter J.A. Happ, shortstop Andrelton Simmons and now Cruz and Colome.