Second baseman Brian Dozier has drawn trade interest from multiple teams this offseason, but the Twins would have to be “really inspired” to even consider moving him, new general manager Thad Levine revealed to season ticket holders Tuesday (via Mike Berardino of the Pioneer Press). “Teams that are trying to win immediately have a lot of interest in (Dozier) and they should,” Levine stated. “He’s an exceptional player, but we view him the exact same way. We don’t have an immediate replacement. No one’s replacing his 42 home runs. Even if he backs off a little bit from that, we don’t have an immediate replacement for that.” The Twins do have a potential in-house successor in Jorge Polanco, but the 23-year-old would have a tough act to follow in the event of a Dozier trade. In addition to the 42 homers Levine mentioned, Dozier slashed .268/.340/.546 and accounted for 5.9 fWAR in 691 plate appearances last season. The Twins don’t seem close to contending, though, and Dozier only has two years remaining on his contract. Those factors have led to plenty of speculation about Dozier’s future as he prepares for 2017 – his age-30 season.
More from Minnesota:
- New Twins chief baseball officer Derek Falvey announced the hiring of James Rowson as the club’s hitting coach Friday. “James is someone who possesses all of the attributes of an impact coach and he’s held in high regard by those who’ve had the chance to work alongside him. It was clear to (manager) Paul (Molitor), Thad, and myself that James is the perfect fit for our organization moving forward,” Falvey said. Rowson’s previous experience as a major league hitting coach came with the Cubs from 2012-13. He spent the past three seasons as the Yankees’ minor league hitting coordinator and will now take over for the fired Tom Brunansky.
- Falvey left room for his predecessor, longtime GM Terry Ryan, to remain with the organization in some capacity. Ryan declined, however, and he explained his decision to Berardino. “I’ve been there 30 years. I think to be fair to everyone that’s there, especially Derek and Thad, I probably need to go elsewhere,” Ryan said Thursday. The 63-year-old Ryan, whom the Twins fired in July, joined the Phillies as a special assignment scout earlier this week.