The Twins have signed eight players to minor league pacts with invites to Major League Spring Training, tweets Betsy Helfand of the St. Paul Pioneer Press. In addition to their previously reported deals with righty Derek Law and second baseman Tzu-Wei Lin, the Twins have re-signed left-hander Danny Coulombe, righty Juan Minaya and catcher Tomas Telis. They’ve also brought infielder/outfielder Rob Refsnyder and right-handers Glenn Sparkman and Luke Farrell into the fold.
Coulombe, 31, tossed 2 2/3 shutout innings with the Twins in 2020 but spent most of the year at their alternate training site in St. Paul. The former A’s and Dodgers lefty has a career 4.19 ERA and 4.10 FIP in 146 innings out of a big league bullpen. He’s averaged about 8.5 K/9 in that time, but Coulombe’s strikeout numbers exploded at the Triple-A level in 2019, when he punched out 61 hitters in just 36 1/3 innings while maintaining a ground-ball rate north of 50 percent. Suffice it to say, he’s an intriguing depth piece.
Minaya, 30, was selected to the Twins’ big league roster in 2020 but designated for assignment before getting into a game. Minnesota got a long look at him not only at their alternate site in St. Paul this past season but from parts of four seasons spent in the division-rival White Sox’ bullpen. Minaya has a 3.93 ERA, a 4.18 FIP and 10 strikeouts per nine innings in 128 1/3 frames at the MLB level, all coming with the South Siders.
The 29-year-old Telis hasn’t appeared in the big leagues since 2018 but spent the past two seasons in the Twins organization, including a terrific 2019 showing with their Triple-A club: .330/.364/.490 in 327 plate appearances. Telis, a career .230/.267/.298 hitter in 267 MLB plate appearances, will be behind both Mitch Garver and Ryan Jeffers on the Twins’ depth chart but gives them an experienced depth option.
New to the organization is the 29-year-old Refsnyder, who has seen big league time with the Yankees, Blue Jays, Rays and Rangers. In 457 trips to the dish, he’s a .217/.305/.297 hitter. While he was never regarded as a top prospect, Refsnyder excited Yankee fans with a promising debut effort back in 2015, but he’s never replicated that small-sample success. Refsnyder does carry a career .296 average and .372 OBP in parts of six Triple-A seasons, and he has experience at second base, both infield corners and both outfield corners.
Both Sparkman and Farrell have recent MLB experience — Sparkman in Kansas City and Farrell in Texas. Sparkman, 28, has a 5.99 ERA in 180 1/3 big league innings but a strong track record in both Double-A and Triple-A, giving the Twins some upper-level depth. Farrell, the son of former big league skipper John Farrell, has a 5.00 ERA in 63 MLB frames but, like Sparkman, has a stronger track record in the upper minors.