It's been reported by various sources that Carl Pavano has re-signed for the Twins for ... wait for it ... $16.5M. Now that is what I'm talkin' about! Pavano was reportedly offered a deal by the Yankees for one-year and $10M. TwinsGeek said it first, but Pavano probably signed for half to three-quarters of his market value at the beginning of the off-season. There are probably many theories out there on why this deal was so long in the making and why few other clubs were interested in Pavano, but it can't be ignored that Pavano is 35-years-old and has had only a few seasons during his career in which made it through an entire season without injury.
I think this deal is good for the Twins on a number of fronts. First and foremost, the deal provides the Twins some insurance in the event that Pavano does experience injury over the next two seasons. Yes, they are still on the hook for $8.25M per, but that's vastly less than Pavano was expected to sign for. Secondly, this provides the Twins with some extra cash to spend on the bullpen in the last couple months of the off-season. That is huge. For a team with such a void to fill, any wiggle-room is big. Thirdly, Pavano is back with the Twins for two years. He is a veteran presence, by all accounts a good clubhouse guy, and so far with the Twins, he's been consistent and effective. Even if his production declines a little over the next year or two, the Twins will still have guy who can go out there every 5 days (again, if he stays healthy) and give them 5-7 serviceable innings. TwinkieTown had an excellent piece today looking ahead to next year's off-season, paying special attention to the fact that the Twins may very well have $20-$30M to spend. With Pavano locked up beyond next year, he's one less guy they will have to think about, giving them an opportunity to be a major player in the free-agent market in 2012. Who knows what this year will bring, but there is optimism for the Twins beyond this season.
Welcome back 'stash!