Chris Archer Can’t Be It

Photo: Kim Klement – USA TODAY Sports

Well, we’ve been begging the Minnesota Twins to add to their starting pitching rotation and they have done just that this evening, signing veteran big-name starter, Chris Archer, to a one-year deal worth $3.5 million. If he’s really good, that salary could jump to as high as $9.5 million, with bonuses. So just like that, the Twins have their 5th starter, I guess.

Known for dominance he once showed on the mound in Tampa Bay, the Twins are hoping to resurrect the 33-year-old’s career, which has gone south in recent years. Archer was an All-Star in 2015 and 2017.

His best seasons were even earlier, from 2013-2015. Over those three seasons, he pitched 535.1 innings with a 3.26 ERA, 3.36 FIP and 117 ERA+. Those are numbers of an elite starter. But Archer hasn’t been that guy for a half-decade. Hell, he hasn’t had an ERA+ over 100 (average) since 2017.

This can’t be it…

Earlier on Monday, I wrote about how primed the Minnesota Twins roster was for a blockbuster-type trade that sent away one of many top hitting prospects, in return for an ace-type veteran starter worthy of heading a playoff-worthy rotation. I specified that the starting pitcher be acquired via trade, because the only pitchers left in Free Agency were guys like Chris Archer.

Until proven otherwise, Archer is a back of the rotation, past his prime, rebuild project. Something we’ve become accustomed to with the Falvey/Levine operation. Maybe it’ll work out, maybe it won’t. But one thing is for sure, this is NOT the big time move the Twins needed in order to become a World Series contender.

Get back on the phone.

Yes, Carlos Correa fell into Jim Pohlad’s lap. But if he and his “forward-thinking” front office aren’t willing to do everything in their power to maximize such an opportunity, then they should’ve just let the phone ring last weekend when Scott Boras called. Raking in millions of extra dollars on 100’s of thousands of phony tickets of false hope would be much more evil than doing nothing at all.

Signing Chris Archer is cute. Now get back on the phones and use one of Trevor Larnach, Jose Miranda, Luis Arraez, Max Kepler, Austin Martin or Royce Lewis to reel in a starting pitcher that’s actually worth some victories.

At $115 million (after the Archer signing), the Twins are still under-budget for player salaries. They’ve spent more in each of the past five seasons than they’re scheduled to spend in 2022. That’s incomprehensible for a team loaded with offensive talent, before it added Carlos Correa. Now that he’s here, failing to bring in a front-rotation starter would be straight fraud.

Eric Strack | Minnesota Sports Fan