The Minnesota Twins baffled and confused many around baseball when they signed designated hitter/first baseman Kendrys Morales to a one-year, prorated deal earlier this month. Now it sounds like the Twins might look to keep Morales in town for a number of years beyond 2014.
According to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe, the Twins are eyeing a couple different possibilities to keep Morales in a Twins uniform after this season:
While the Twins signed Morales for just the remainder of the year, don’t be surprised to see them try to re-up him. According to a major league source, the Twins like his switch-hitting bat and his influence on the younger Twins.
Cafardo notes that the Twins could either look to sign Morales to an extension in the traditional sense at the end of the season, or they could consider flipping him at the trade deadline and then pursuing him as a free agent at season’s end.
Morales has cooled off lately after a roaring start to his 2014 campaign. Through 12 games and 51 plate appearances Morales is currently batting .214/.275/.277 with zero home runs and five driven in. Still, his initial burst of production showed the way that he can help the Twins as a booming bat behind Joe Mauer in the lineup.
Given the Twins’ current position at the bottom of the division, the business decision might be to flip Morales at the deadline for young talent and then hope to re-sign him in off-season. But if the Twins value Morales and his leadership enough, they might keep him in hopes that he will stay in Minnesota beyond this season.