La Velle E. Neal III has covered baseball for the Star Tribune since 1998 (the post-Knoblauch era). Born and raised in Chicago, he grew up following the White Sox and hating the Cubs. He attended both the University of Illinois and Illinois-Chicago and began his baseball writing career at the Kansas City Star. He can be heard occasionally on KFAN radio, lending his great baseball mind to Paul Allen and other hosts. Mark Rosen borrows him occasionally for WCCO-TV.

Twins sign reliever Perez to minor-league deal

Posted by: La Velle E. Neal III Updated: February 14, 2013 - 12:07 PM
The Twins might have added some depth to their bullpen Thursday by signing lefthanded reliever Rafael Perez to a minor league contract. Twins fans should be familiar with Perez, who pitched the past seven seasons for AL Central rival Cleveland.
The lefthander has a 21-12 career record with a 3.64 ERA. He was a combined 11-3 in 2010-11, but had shoulder problems last season that eventually required surgery. He appeared in just eight games last season for the Indians.
Perez will report to camp on Thursday. The Twins, technically, will have 35 pitchers in camp but Nick Blackburn and Lester Oliveros are on the minor league side rehabbing injuries.
He has decent stuff, as evidenced by 268 strikeouts in 329 career innings.  Perez has pitched mostly in set-up roles, and could be in that same spot with the Twins, since former lefthanded set-up man Glen Perkins is now the team’s closer.

UPDATE: Twins manager Ron Gardenhire was pleased with the signing, because Perez has a career 1.89 ERA in 41 games against them. Joe Mauer approved of the signing too.

``He hides the ball well,'' Mauer said.

Caution is needed here. Shoulder surgeries can be tough to come back from. But if Perez is all the way back, he could be a valuable middle relief option. For more info on Perez's surgery, check out this story. 

Day 2

The Perez signing was the biggest news on a day in which the Twins had to move their work indoors to avoid the rain. Some drills had to be scratched, but the pitchers got their work in, which is important.

Some quick observations:

Jared Burton and Darin Mastroianni are in fantastic shape.

Josh Roenicke is a reliever to watch in camp. Roenicke posted a 3.25 ERA with Colorado last season despite a high walk rate. There's also Tim Wood, a two-time International League reliever of the year. Both players are out of options

Brian Dozier is switching his uniform number from No. 20 to No.2. ``No. 20 didn't work out too well for me last year,'' he said. ``Maybe I can get some of that Denard Span magic.''


St. Louis - LP: K. Siegrist 6 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - WP: J. Grimm 7
Toronto - LP: M. Buehrle 4 FINAL
NY Yankees - WP: H. Kuroda 6
Arizona - LP: W. Miley 5 FINAL
Philadelphia - WP: K. Kendrick 9
Washington - WP: T. Roark 4 FINAL
Cincinnati - LP: A. Simon 1
Boston - LP: J. Tazawa 4 FINAL
Tampa Bay - WP: D. Price 6
San Diego - WP: J. Hahn 5 FINAL
Atlanta - LP: A. Wood 2
Oakland - LP: J. Hammel 1 FINAL
Texas - WP: J. Williams 4
NY Mets - WP: C. Torres 3 FINAL
Milwaukee - LP: F. Rodriguez 2
Miami - WP: B. Hand 2 FINAL
Houston - LP: D. Keuchel 0
Chicago WSox - WP: J. Danks 9 FINAL
Minnesota - LP: K. Correia 5
Cleveland - LP: C. Carrasco 4 FINAL
Kansas City - WP: K. Herrera 6
Pittsburgh - LP: C. Morton 1 FINAL
Colorado - WP: B. Anderson 8
Detroit 1 FINAL
LA Angels 2
Baltimore 2 Top 10th Inning
Seattle 1
Los Angeles 8 Bottom 8th Inning
San Francisco 0
Chivas USA 0 FINAL
Colorado 3
Calgary 26 FINAL
Edmonton 22
Winnipeg 23 FINAL
Brt Columbia 6
Ottawa 7/26/14 6:00 PM
Toronto 7/26/14 9:00 PM
Winnipeg 7/31/14 6:00 PM
Toronto 8/1/14 6:00 PM
Brt Columbia 8/1/14 9:00 PM
Saskatchewan 8/2/14 6:00 PM
Tulsa 77 FINAL
Washington 82
Chicago 79 FINAL
Atlanta 75
San Antonio 78 FINAL
Minnesota 88





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