Twins to Sign Joel Zumaya?

15 Jan

UPDATE – I read things wrong. The Twins gave Zumaya a Major League contract, guaranteed money as opposed to a minor league contract. That changes things a little bit. It’s still not enough money to worry about or be upset about, but there is a little bit more risk in the deal. As Jim Crikket points out in the Comments section, it’s a find deal if it doesn’t affect the Twins ability to sign someone else that can be counted on more. (Coffey, Wheeler, etc?)

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According to a tweet by Jason Beck of, the Twins have reached an agreement with RHP Joel Zumaya on a minor league contract that will reportedly pay him between $800,000 and 1.7 million.

Obviously, especially in this case, the Twins are wise to not report it themselves until Zumaya passes a physical.

A caution to Twins fans expecting to see the Zumaya of 2006 that threw 100-101 mph with a sharp slider and little control. Reports of his tryout several weeks ago were that he is touching 92 mph with his fastball. However, there is little risk in a minor league contract, and Zumaya is still just 27 years old. The last time he pitched was at Target Field in 2010 when he bounced off the mound after throwing out his elbow.

As a 21 year old rookie in 2006, he posted a 1.94 ERA in 62 games. From 2007 through 2010, he averaged 27 appearances and 31+ innings. He did not pitch in 2011.

I must admit that Zumaya is a name that intrigued me coming into the offseason, but based on there being 50 scouts at his tryout, I assumed that the Twins would not be in the mix. Now, I’m just very curious how this will go.

If you would like, please feel free to e-mail me or leave questions or comments in the Comments Section!


10 Responses to “Twins to Sign Joel Zumaya?”

  1. JimCrikket January 15, 2012 at 4:03 pm #

    Beck reported that it’s a Major League deal, didn’t he? Seems the Twins may have been the only team willing to give him that. $800K isn’t a terribly big risk to take but given Zumaya’s injury history, my concern is that this will keep them from also getting someone more likely to actually throw meaningful innings in 2012. It SHOULDN’T keep them from also going after someone like Todd Coffey, but if it does, I’m less enthused about signing Zumaya.

    • mike wants wins January 15, 2012 at 4:27 pm #

      Concur. If this is the last move, it’s risky. If they sign another arm to throw out there and see what works, then great.

      • JimCrikket January 15, 2012 at 4:54 pm #

        According to Joe C’s Strib post, “One key note is that Zumaya has agreed to a non-guaranteed major league deal. This means he’ll be given a spot on the 40-man roster, but the Twins would be able to cut him in spring training and not be on the hook for all of the guaranteed money if something doesn’t look right.”

        If that’s the case, it makes the deal better from the Twins’ perspective, certainly.

        Again, that’s only if it means they continue to look at other, more reliable, options.

  2. Jeremy January 15, 2012 at 4:04 pm #

    Big league deal, it sounds like…

  3. Jeremy January 15, 2012 at 4:06 pm #

    Regardless, there is fat that could be trimmed from 40-man when/if needed.

  4. Bill in Sarasota January 15, 2012 at 4:50 pm #

    This is a great risk/value move.

    Downside – $800k

    Upside – dominant set up guy and possible trade bait if out of contention at the trade deadline.

    This is a kind of move that the Rays have done in recent years.

  5. thrylos98 January 15, 2012 at 8:25 pm #

    Actually the downside is zero. If he does not make the team in ST, he is a free agent and he is not owed a penny other than ST per diem by the Twins. Upside is great. Hope the deal involves a vesting option as well, but we will find out next week. Amazing how the Twins stole him from his hometown Padres…

  6. Mike January 16, 2012 at 10:54 am #

    I understand the fascination but even in his best season (4years removed) he walked 4.54 per 9. He was never a lock down set up man. Nevertheless, this is still a great zero risk move.

  7. Mike January 16, 2012 at 10:55 am #

    Oops, he is 5 years removed from his best season.

  8. Greg January 16, 2012 at 1:13 pm #

    If the guy is healthy, stays healthy awesome add. I would think it would be one of the best Relievers added since the Nathan trade.. Health is the only red flag. Great zero risk is correct.

    I would like to see Coffey as one more guy for the mix Nice stats, got some heat also…….or another RH batter to add for the line up.

    Team is shaping up.. Rotation bounces back. Mauer, Morneau come back.. Should be a fun Season.

    Don”t think Billy would have done this much. Welcome back TR..

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