The Twins had fortified the rotation by agreeing to terms with veteran lefty starter J.A. Happ on a one-year contract, ESPN's Jeff Passan reports. The deal is pending a physical. According to Jon Heyman, the contract will be worth $8 million.
Happ, 38, has spent the last two-and-a-half seasons with the Yankees. In the abbreviated 2020 season, he pitched to a 3.47 ERA/123 ERA+ and a 2.80 K/BB ratio across nine starts. For his career, Happ has an ERA+ of 104 in 298 starts and 26 relief appearances. Those results are spread across parts of 14 big-league seasons, a plurality of which came with the Blue Jays. Coming into the 2020-21 offseason, Happ was not ranked among our top 60 free agents.
In Minnesota, Happ will likely slot in the rotation behind Jose Berrios, Kenta Maeda, and Michael Pineda and presumably ahead of Randy Dobnak. The Twins in 2021 will be aiming to win their third straight AL Central title, but they should be challenged by the up-and-coming White Sox.