The Twins have claimed right-hander Dennis Santana off waivers from the Braves, Phil Miller of the Star Tribune reports. In a corresponding move, Twins shortstop Royce Lewis will be transferred to the 60-day IL. Atlanta had acquired Santana from the Rangers earlier this offseason in exchange for cash considerations. The Braves have announced the waiver claim. There had been no previous indication Santana was removed from Atlanta’s roster but they evidently tried to pass him through waivers in recent days.
Following brief stints in the majors with the Dodgers in 2018 and 2019, Santana got his first extended run of playing time in the shortened 2020 season, where he pitched out of the Dodgers bullpen in twelve games. Santana struggled in those appearances, racking up a 5.29 ERA and 5.72 FIP throughout the season. He stuck with the Dodgers into the first half of the 2021 season, though his struggles in LA continued until he was traded to the Rangers in June of that year. While Santana never found his footing in LA, struggling to a 6.48 ERA, 32% worse than league average, across his 40 2/3 innings as a Dodger, he was able to turn a corner upon arriving in Texas.
As member of the Rangers, Santana pitched to a well above average 3.63 ERA (123 ERA+) in 2021, a figure that was largely backed up by his solid 4.15 FIP. These improved results stood as Santana was catching up to his own talents as a flamethrower. His fastball had always been impressive, with his 96 mph 4-seamer ranking in the league’s 81st percentile in terms of velocity. Still, red flags were present, as Santana continued to struggle with his control. He walked a whopping 13.5% of batters in 2021 while striking out just 19.4%.
Unfortunately for Santana, 2022 proved to be a difficult season. Despite an uptick in velocity raising his fastball to an average of 97.7 mph and improved barrel and whiff rates, the right-hander’s strikeout and walk improvements, to 21.2% and 11% respectively, still left him below league average in those regards. When those below average rates are combined with an extremely low 54.3% of Santana’s runners being left on base, it’s easy to see how his ERA ballooned up to 5.22 in 2022, 24% below league average. Still, that fluky lack of stranded runners kept his FIP at a much more palatable 3.35 for the year, leaving reason for optimism headed into the 2023 season.
Santana now joins a Twins bullpen mix that includes the likes of Emilio Pagan and Jorge Alcala set to work the middle innings to bridge the gap between the starting rotation and back-end options Jhoan Duran, Jorge Lopez, and Caleb Thielbar. The acquisition of Santana also helps Minnesota build up a depth of relievers who can go multiple innings. This would help the club keep players like Josh Winder and Cole Sands in starting role at Triple-A, which the organization has previously stated as its preference. Santana is out of minor league options, meaning that if the Twins wish to retain him in the organization without putting him on the Opening Day roster, they’ll have to attempt to pass him through waivers at some point this spring.
As for Lewis, he had the misfortune of tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee in June of last year. That was the same ligament he tore the previous year, leading to two straight seasons ended by ACL surgery. At the time of that injury diagnosis, his estimated timeline was given as 12 months, meaning he likely won’t be able to rejoin the club until June and making this IL placement an expected result.
Top 5 Santana signing in Twins’ history.
Then I must say I can’t recall. Surely they’ve got a few who showed well in a few games over the years
He’s got some pretty nasty movement and velo, just not sure where the hell it’s gonna end up after he throws it
“wild thing. You make my heart sing”. He needs to come out with that song as entry into the game. Psychological warfare lol. Batters should be thinking, “is this the day I met my maker”
I know this has nothing to do with this transaction but I just wanted to say that CB Bucknor is a classless cuck who isn’t fit to serve cotton candy in the bleachers.
Similarly unrelated post, but I just ran out of toilet paper up in this throne and it is a bit muddy.
When all else fails, go for the socks. You can always buy new socks
Clepto my man, just do what I do when I run out of toilet paper…use your left or right sock
This one belongs to the Reds
CB Bucknor…have a distinct dislike for that guy from way back so I feel ya.
deGrom Texas Ranger
I can’t wait until at least the home plate umpire is replaced by a more competent, less easily-offended robot across baseball. There won’t be any incompetent umpires who are there just for “reasons” other than their ability, and I noticed that the average umpire seems to get around a few percent of ball/strike calls wrong (non-reviewable atm), which is okay for borderline calls specifically, but overall is trash. The width can be easily perfected by the system, and the height calls that guys are concerned by can be addressed by entering each player’s height into the system to avoid guys squatting like Pujols.
Calling someone a cuck is weird. You have a litany of insults to use and that’s what you decided on?
If I knew CB Bucknor, I’d lay some heavy stank on his unlikeability.
Careful y’all. I criticized the way he handled that in another thread, and the woke mob went off.
Marina-Appeareny nothing..my comment’s awaiting moderation..Hey Tim D: What did I do wrong with that comment? Please send me an email and let me know.
Ahh, so you had an opinion that they didn’t think was popular so you were silenced?
Guess we’ll see..I’m here every day, and was just saying what happened to me earlier..but I’ll let you know when the moderation team makes a decision.
Yeah dude, hope you actually get an explanation.
It was a classless move by CB Bucknor, refusing to shake Marmol’s hand. Who cares what was said in the game last year when Marmol was ejected; that’s part of the job. If you can’t let that stuff go then perhaps it’s time for Bucknor to go instead. As a veteran umpire, he can’t be allowed to carry a bias against St. Louis (or any team) going into the season. Petty and unprofessional if you ask me.
deGrom Texas Ranger
Umpires have no morals. They are the worst human beings on the planet! Wait… what did he do?
To increase the chances of Dennis making the team and making an actual positive contribution in 2023, players in camp have been instructed to call him, JOHAN !!
He’s likely to perform more like JoAnn. The Twins continue to labor under the perception that plus velocity automatically means success.
You can teach someone to pitch. Much harder to teach velocity. They risk nothing.
…and gain nothing
Ummm . . . I know reading is hard but the whole part about it being easier to teach pitching than velocity kind of indicates they’re not gaining nothing . . .
How many random guys have to become good relievers for you to understand that there’s potential in these guys?
Right. Because you’re an expert pitching evaluator.lmfao
I’ve been watching the Y-wins unsuccessfully recycle crap rejects rather than figure out how to consistently develop pitching for 30 years now