Welcome to the Winter Meetings

By: Kelly Thesier/MLB.com

The Winter Meetings have gotten underway here at the Dolphin and Swan Hotel in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.

There has already been some movement with the news yesterday of Jayson Werth’s seven-year, $126 million deal with the Nationals and the Red Sox this morning announcing their trade for Adrian Gonzalez.There is also some buzz this morning about a possible trade between the Orioles and Diamondbacks for Mark Reynolds.

As for the Twins, the team has plenty of needs to address this week although it remains to be seen how much the club will get done. Traditionally the Twins have been quiet during these meetings and have used this time to lay the groundwork for future deals. But that could always change. It was quiet in the lobby regarding the Twins last night since the team had organizational meetings to kick off the week, but today things should really get started.

The Twins are expected to meet with Tsuyoshi Nishioka’s agent, Rick Thurman, of the Beverly Hill Sports Council today. All of the expectations have been that the club will be able to get a deal done with the switch-hitting Japanese middle infielder. It’s a deal that will likely be in the three-year range.

J.J. Hardy’s future is also a big question mark heading into this week with a number of teams reported to be interested in the shortstop. The Twins could listen to offers for Hardy, but until they can sign Nishioka, the club might deem it best to wait before moving the shortstop. It’s also possible that the Twins could keep Hardy and Nishioka. We’ll just have to see what transpires.

That’s about it for now. Carl Pavano’s agent, Tom O’Connell, was around the hotel lobby last night and should be a popular man this week with Pavano considered to be the best free agent starter on the market besides Cliff Lee. The Nationals have strong interest in Pavano, although the Twins have expressed that they would like to bring the veteran starter back as well.

Follow me on twitter @kellythesier and on the blog, as well as twinsbaseball.com, for updates throughout the meetings.

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