MLB Insider Names Former All-Star as Fit For Minnesota Twins… But is He?

Jesse Winker
Rafael Suanes-USA TODAY SportsCredit: Rafael Suanes-USA TODAY Sports

Minnesota Twins president of baseball operations, Derek Falvey, is expected to seek pitching help for both the bullpen and starting rotation over the next few weeks. If he wants to look at offensive additions, his options are more limited, just based off of what the Twins need. A new outfielder could make some sense, though.

As Rocco Baldelli’s lineup currently stands, he has an outfield that consists of constant regulars. Max Kepler has been steady in right field. Byron Buxton has stayed remarkably healthy, so far, meaning he’s been a staple in center field.

Jesse Winker named a trade deadline fit for Minnesota Twins

In left field, there’s been more of a rotation between Trevor Larnach, Manuel Margot, and Willi Castro. Still, the Twins have gotten solid production out of that trio too. Nonetheless, there are murmurs around insider circles that Falvey could be in search of additional thump to the lineup.

Like MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand, who believes Washington Nationals outfielder Jesse Winker is available and then names the Twins as one of two “potential fits”.

The recent promotion of top prospect James Wood could mean the end of Winker’s time in Washington, whether the Nationals become big sellers or not. The 30-year-old is having a solid season (nine homers, 38 RBIs, .787 OPS in 83 games), and his excellent June (.304/.421/.430) could give the Nats a trade chip to use to either improve this year’s club or bring in a prospect or two. Winker is earning $2 million this year and will be a free agent after the season.

Potential fits: Braves, Twins

Mark Feinsand on the availability of Nationals outfielder Jesse Winker, and possible fits (MLB.com)

Winker is intriguing for a couple reasons. First and foremost is his salary. Ownership has not shown a willingness to spend money this year, so why would they want to spend big at the deadline? They won’t, which is why the Pohlads would love Jesse Winker, at just $2 million.

And without a doubt, he is playing good baseball this season. Winker’s 134 OPS+ would rank among the best of his career, if he can keep it there. Winker was an All-Star in 2021, back when baseballs were FLYING out of every MLB ballpark, but he struggled the last two seasons, hitting just .214 in over 700 plate appearances between 2022 and 2023.

Does Jesse Winker make sense for the MN Twins?

Winker isn’t the only outfielder being floated to the Minnesota Twins. ESPN’s Jeff Passan suggesting that Tigers outfielder, Mark Canha, is could be a target for the Twins too. Instead of overspending on 30-somethings on the trade block, Falvey could turn to Matt Wallner, if he wants more pop for the lineup.

The Minnesota-native is crushing Triple-A, but for whatever reason, he seems like a greater candidate for trade than he does for a call-up. Of all the possible offensive trade candidates, Jesse Winker probably makes the least amount of sense.

Related: Twins vs Tigers Game Stopped After Ryan Jeffers Nearly Got His Head Taken Off

Right-handed help is where Minnesota has been focused. It’s why they went and signed Manuel Margot. But Winker is left-handed, just like Kepler, Larnach, Wallner and DaShawn Keirsey Jr.

Adding Winker wouldn’t hurt the Twins lineup, by any means. He may be a slight upgrade over Larnach. But at what cost? Your lineup is already full of power-hitting lefties, some of which are more proven than Winker. If Falvey is going to wheel and deal over the next few weeks, I can’t see his big move being this.

Mentioned in this article:

More About: