Nelson Cruz Reportedly Returning to Twins on One-Year Deal
Great news for Twins fans, as well as Twins players, as Nelson Cruz has reportedly agreed on a one-year deal to return to Minnesota for 2021 season.
According to multiple sources, including TwinsBaseball.com, the one-year deal is worth $13 million and is contingent upon Cruz passing a physical, which should be a formality.
Cruz is not only a both a fan favorite and a leader in the clubhouse, but he remains an impact player in the Twins lineup, even after crossing the 40-year mark in age. In fact, he was the Twins' best hitter over the last two seasons as he also had some of the best stats of his career:
His OPS+ marks of 168 and 169 in the last two seasons were the highest full-season marks of his career, and he received national recognition with a pair of top 10 finishes in AL MVP Award voting and Silver Slugger Awards.
Across two seasons in Minnesota, Cruz hit .308/.394/.626 with 57 homers in 173 games.
Paying Cruz $13 million for the upcoming season is on par with what the Twins have paid the DH in the past. The Twins originally signed him in 2019 for $14 million and then exercised his $12 million club option to keep him with the team in 2020.
There was some concern that after the Twins signed Andrelton Simmons, an absolute defensive wizard at shortstop, that they may not be able to also bring Nelson Cruz back into the fold. Those concerns have been alleviated and now Twins fans can breathe a sigh of relief. Time to shore up the bullpen, and ideally add another starting pitcher, then count the days until Spring Training finally begins!