Veteran shortstop Erick Aybar has been informed he will not make the Twins roster, tweets Mike Berardino of the Pioneer Press. Aybar seemed to have at least an outside shot of making the club out of camp in light of Jorge Polanco’s 80-game PED suspension, but after managing just a .621 OPS in 35 spring training at-bats, Minnesota couldn’t find room for him. Aybar signed with the Twins late in February on a minor league deal; He can choose to opt out of it on Friday. We’re now three years removed from Aybar’s last season playing above league average; since a 4.2 fWAR campaign in which he hit .278/.321/.379 while playing sterling defense at shortstop for the Angels, Aybar has severely declined. Over the past three seasons, his glovework has been average at best, and he sports a wRC+ of just 73.
Other Twins-related items…
- There are other changes afoot in Minnesota, too, as Berardino reports. Righties Alan Busenitz and Tyler Duffey were each shipped out of camp on optional assignment. Both struggled this spring, as Berardino notes, while other developments — particularly, the desire to carry Rule 5 pick Tyler Kinley and oft-injured starter Phil Hughes in the pen — have tightened things on the MLB roster. As per the conditions of the Rule 5 Draft, the Twins must keep Kinley on the major league roster for an entire season or else offer him back to the Marlins. The 27-year-old righty has allowed five earned runs while striking out eleven hitters in ten spring training innings.
- Chris Heisey has been granted his release by the Twins, tweets Phil Miller of the Star Tribune. The 33-year-old outfielder played in 38 games last season for the Nationals (79 plate appearances), and hit a dismal .162/.216/.270. In the early stages of his career, Heisey played in a reserve outfielder role for the Reds; he’s since played for the Dodgers in addition to the aforementioned Nats. He owns just a .444 OPS this spring, so it would be tough to imagine him latching onto an opening day roster spot with an MLB club.