Twins Make Best and Final Offer to Byron Buxton with Trade Threats Included

Photo: @Twins – Twitter

It’s funny. Life as a Minnesota sports fan can often become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Nearly a decade ago, on June 12, 2012, Byron Buxton signed his rookie contract with the Minnesota Twins. As the #1 overall pick, it packed a $6 million signing bonus. It was a good day and Buxton immediately shot to the top of MLB prospect rankings across the world of baseball.

Byron would remain the #1 prospect in baseball for much of his time in the Twins minor league system. Fans were excited but happiness in this town always comes with a caveat. IF (and that’s a big “if” in professional baseball) Byron Buxton reaches his full potential, the Twins won’t be able to afford him and he’ll play his best years somewhere else.

Minnesota fortune telling

Well, here we are on the early morning of July 16, 2021, and our self-told fortunes have come to light. This big midnight news drop from Ken Rosenthal (The Athletic) will have the Minnesota sports world buzzing all day.

The Twins are tempting injured center fielder Byron Buxton, taking their best shot at signing him to a long-term extension, according to major-league sources.

The team’s latest offer to Buxton is in excess of the $70 million the Yankees awarded center fielder Aaron Hicks over a seven-year extension in Feb. 2019, sources said. Buxton, 27, likely will be dealt if he rejects the proposal, if not by the July 30 trade deadline — he currently is on the injured list with a fractured left hand — then this offseason.

Ken Rosenthal – The Athletic

Now what?

Keep your ear pinned to the ground (eyes on twitter) today. We’ll likely hear rumblings about the likelihood Buxton signs this deal. Hopefully, we’ll also find out what the term of the offer is. Rosenthal doesn’t disclose either of those things in his article.

He does, however, write a lot about what Buxton’s worth could be on the open market. In essence, it’s impossible to gauge. In the article, Rosenthal admits that Byron has the talent, and put up numbers last season, that only compare to dudes like Mike Trout and Mookie Betts, who both make $30 million per year. Unfortunately, he can’t stay on the field. It’s become a problem that has, up to age 27, plagued his entire career.

In 2017, Buxton played 140 games. He hasn’t played in more than 87 games since and that’s a big problem, given there are 162 in a full season.

Back in May, I warned that this was coming. How much does Byron Buxton believe in his own ability to stay healthy while playing professional baseball? I’m not sure how many people know the answer to that question but I do believe we’re all gonna find out very soon.

Eric Strack | Minnesota Sports Fan