Santana's (finger) club option for 2019 was not picked up by the Twins on Tuesday, Brandon Warne of ZoneCoverage.com reports. Rather than paying him $14 million in 2019, the Twins will let Santana walk after a lingering finger issue limited the veteran right-hander to just five ineffective starts in 2018 (8.03 ERA, 5.8 K/9 and 3.3 HR/9 across 24.2 innings). The soon-to-be 36-year-old is just one season removed from an All-Star campaign in 2017 (3.28 ERA across 33 starts), so he should draw some interest in free agency.
Santana (finger) was transferred to the 60-day disabled list Saturday, Brandon Warne of ZoneCoverage.com reports. The Twins purchased the contract of Juan Graterol earlier in the day, so they booted Santana off the 40-man roster to make room. Santana had already been ruled out for the remainder of the season with a finger issue.
Santana is undergoing PRP treatments to his right middle finger and will not pitch again in 2018, Mike Berardino of the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports. Manager Paul Molitor indicated Aug. 20 the possibility of Santana being done for the season, and his continued treatment makes it an easy decision with the season drawing to a close. The Twins seem likely to exercise the $1 million buyout in the 36-year-old's contract this offseason instead of retaining him for $14 million in 2019. Santana made only five starts this season, allowing 22 runs across 24.2 innings, and he gave up nine home runs as well.
Santana was placed on the 10-day disabled list Sunday due to recurring discomfort related to the original injury he suffered to his right middle finger prior to spring training, Dan Hayes of The Athletic Minnesota reports. The 35-year-old required surgery in early February to address the issue, resulting in him opening the season on the 60-day DL before he debuted July 25. Though he was ostensibly healthy, Santana's velocity was down significantly in his five starts for the Twins, resulting in him turning in a 8.03 ERA and 1.62 WHIP over 24.2 innings before Minnesota opted to shut him down again. With the Twins not in contention for the postseason, it wouldn't be surprising if Santana was shuttered for the rest of 2018 as the team looks to assess younger rotation options. Stephen Gonsalves was recalled from Triple-A Rochester in a corresponding move and will replace Santana in the rotation Monday against the White Sox.
Santana (0-1) took the loss Friday as the Twins dropped a 5-3 decision to the Tigers, coughing up five runs on three hits and two walks over six innings while striking out five. All three hits Santana allowed went for extra bases -- a pair of two-run homers by Niko Goodrum and Jose Iglesias, plus a triple by JaCoby Jones. The veteran hurler's return from a finger injury has been a rough one so far, and he now carries a 6.53 ERA through four starts. He'll next take the mound Thursday at home in a rematch against Detroit.