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.

Evening update: Terry Ryan meets with reporters

Posted by: La Velle E. Neal III Updated: December 9, 2013 - 5:43 PM


Twins GM Terry Ryan just wrapped up his presser. Here are some highlights:

He said he has payroll flexibility to go after a starter or offensive help. With reports out that the Twins are back in on Bronson Arroyo, it looks like he's going after pitching first.

The catching free agent market dried up quickly last week, Ryan acknowledged. The Twins might have to trade for a catcher if they feel they need to add one.

Ryan said he would prefer to have some balance in his rotation. That appears to be unlikely, especially if they are able to sign Arroyo. Scott Diamond is their only left-handed starter at the moment.

Ryan said Samuel Deduno is playing catch and on pace to have a normal spring training. The Twins historically have taken it easy with pitchers coming back from surgery. Now, Mike Pelfrey and Vance Worley stayed on a normal track after having surgeries before the 2013 season. But the Twins held Diamond back as he races to be ready for Opening Day. My guess is that they will ease Deduno into action.

Ryan has a function to attend tonight but said he he hoped to speak with clubs and agents later this evening.

Ryan repeated that it's unlikely that the club will be active in the major league phase of the Rule 5 draft on Thursday but could be active in the minor league phase.

Miguel Sano (right elbow) will be examined sometime this month. He was shut down early in the winter ball season because of a strained ulnar collateral ligament.

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