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By: Kelly Thesier/MLB.com
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — The Twins met with Carl Pavano and his agent, Tom O’Connell, on Tuesday afternoon during the second day of the Winter Meetings at the Walt Disney World Swan & Dolphin Resort.
Pavano traveled from West Palm Beach to the Winter Meetings to meet with a total of four teams. O’Connell said that the meeting with the Twins was productive but that there is no hurry for his client to get a deal completed with any team.
“We’re being very methodical about this and we’re going to take our time,” O’Connell said. “We’re going to evaluate every opportunity before we make a decision.”
There has been mutual interest between the Twins and Pavano, and Twins general manager Bill Smith told reporters on Monday that he believes it’s still a possibility that Pavano could return to the club.
The Twins seem unlikely to join in a high bidding war for Pavano, who is believed to be seeking a three-year deal. But Smith indicated there are other reasons to think that the starter could possibly end up back in Minnesota.
“Players who have made lots of money in this game I think have maybe different priorities than younger players who may be getting the first crack at [free agency],” Smith said. “Where they play, the manager, the coaches, the teammates, the facilities, the living conditions, the travel, the fans, a winning atmosphere — I think there are a lot of factors that go though [a player’s mind] and I think veteran players weigh them differently than young players.”
Smith added, “I know that Carl Pavano loves playing in Minnesota. He’s enjoyed it over the last year and a half, and I think that’s a factor for him.”
It’s that time of the year again when the baseball world converges on a hotel for the annual Winter Meetings. This year it’s at the Indianapolis Marriott and I’m here for the week and will be bringing you updates on the Twins.
A few quick nuggets to get started. Today is the deadline for free agents who were offered arbitration to accept or decline it. For the Twins, that means they’ll learn whether or not Carl Pavano accepted their offer for arbitration. A little before midnight last night, Twins GM Bill Smith and assistant GM Rob Antony were sitting down and chatting with Pavano’s agent, Tom O’Connell in the lobby of the Marriott.
The expectation is that if Pavano believes he can get a two-year deal from a club then he will turn down the Twins arbitration offer. The Twins have made clear their interest in bringing Pavano back and even if he doesn’t accept the arbitration offer, the club can still negotiate with the veteran pitcher to try and work out a deal.
A busy day here at Comerica Park for the Twins, starting of course with the acquisition of pitcher Carl Pavano from the Indians. So here a few quick updates while I work on more stories for later.
— Carl Pavano arrived at the ballpark this afternoon after driving up from Cleveland and spoke with the media before batting practice. He’s excited to come to a division-contending team. He’ll get his opportunity to pitch quickly for Minnesota. Pavano is set to start Saturday against the Tigers and Glen Perkins will move into the bullpen for this series. Pavano will wear Torii Hunter’s old number, 48.
–Here is how the rotation will roll out for now. Scott Baker will make Sunday’s start in the series finale.Nick Blackburn is set to pitch Tuesday vs. Kansas City and he’ll be on regular rest, thanks to Monday’s off day. For now both Francisco Liriano and Perkins are still considered to be in the rotation, although as I said earlier Perkins will be out of the ‘pen for now. More decisions will be made on the rotation after they can talk to Liriano, who is currently in the Twin Cities dealing with a family matter.
— Third baseman Joe Crede will miss this series, as he’s going to have another cortisone shot in the AC joint of his right shoulder tonight. The pain has been steadily getting worse in his shoulder again and doctors feel another shot should help that. The hope is Crede will be ready to play Tuesday vs. Kansas City.
3rd place in AL Central, 4.5 games back
Denard Span, LF
Orlando Cabrera, SS
Joe Mauer, C
Justin Morneau, 1B
Jason Kubel, DH
Michael Cuddyer, RF
Brendan Harris, 3B
Carlos Gomez, CF
Nick Punto, 2B
Pitching: RHP Anthony Swarzak (3-4, 4.25)
1st place in AL Central
Curtis Granderson, CF
Placido Polanco, 2B
Clete Thomas, LF
Miguel Cabrera, 1B
Carlos Guillen, DH
Magglio Ordonez, RF
Brandon Inge, 3B
Alex Avila, C
Adam Everett, SS
Pitching: RHP Armando Galarraga (5-10, 5.22)
A reminder you can follow me on Twitter @kellythesier