Terry Ryan set a decidedly realistic tone for the Minnesota Twins in addressing the media after earlier today's surprise announcement that he was taking over as the team's interim general manager.
We are going to be looking for good players. Some are going to be realistic and some aren’t. When you are sitting and deciding the future of your team, and you know exactly where you are and where you future is payroll wise, you are going to have to be realistic.
And I think anybody can look at this list, and see who fits, not only talent wise, but contract wise and years wise and all the things that comes with it.
Some players won’t have much interest in coming here. Some will relish the fact that they could come here. This isn’t exactly the year that we are coming off 94 wins that everybody is going to want to come to Minnesota. We’ve got some issues. Players know that.
The Twins lost 99 games last season -- its most since going 60-102 back in 1982 -- and they were coming off nine winning seasons out of ten. Thus, out Bill Smith, and back in, Ryan, who served as general manager of the team from 1994-2007.
Back on the job, Ryan admitted he has some homework to do, and that will start with addressing four key free agents: utiltyman Michael Cuddyer, pitcher Matt Kapps, closer Joe Nathan and outfielder Jason Kubel.
We had four players file for free agency. I think it's safe to say that I need to talk to them and their agents pretty quickly. And four of those are impactful players in this organization. Cuddyer has been with us since '97. Kapps was huge for us two years ago, he struggled this year. Nathan has been a premier closer. And Kubel is the type of offense we are trying to bring here as far as scoring more runs. And he's been with us since high school.
So I think it would be apparent that I need to talk to our own before I worry about anybody else...
I have to do some work here still, before I can start answering questions about where they are headed and what their desires are. I’ve read quotes from the various players, 'I’d like to come back.' It’s just a matter of much dollars they are willing to take and how many years.