Twins Competing with Tigers for Kenta Maeda

MLB: ALDS-Minnesota Twins at Houston Astros
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MLB free agency is in full swing. Aaron Nola re-signed in Philadelphia and Reynaldo Lopez signed a 3 year-deal with the Atlanta Braves. The Twins will look to be active in the starting pitcher market as well, after Cy Young finalist Sonny Gray rejected his qualifying offer.

Twins vs Tigers for Kenta Maeda

One of the names the Twins are targeting, according to Jon Heyman (New York Post) is Kenta Maeda.

Kenta Maeda is drawing interest from the Tigers and his old Twins.

Jon Heyman – NY Post

Coming off his fourth season with the Twins (missing all of 2022 because of injury), he posted a 6-8 record over 20 starts, with a 4.23 ERA in a year that saw his lowest total innings pitched (104.1) in his career, besides the shortened 2020 season, a season in which he finished second in Cy Young voting.

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What does Kenta Maeda bring to Twins, others?

The Twins will have to compete in the division to retain Maeda, as the Tigers have shown interest in the 33-year-old righty. The Tigers have a young rotation, and a veteran like Maeda would add a stabilizing presence to that staff.

The baseball-rabid Japanese fanbase is worth noting here too. While the Tigers and Twins probably aren’t in the running for Japanese ace Yoshinobu Yamamoto, the presence of another Japanese star opens up marketing opportunities abroad that other teams do not possess.

After Pablo Lopez, the Twins rotation will have some questions to answer. Joe Ryan and Bailey Ober have shown promise but they are far from staff aces. Obviously, neither is Maeda, but bringing him back would keep a consistent veteran in a rotation and add depth the Twins might need.

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