Fort Myers, Fla. – Last spring, Twins closer Glen Perkins signed a contract extension through the 2017 season. This week, he said that will be his last contract extension or long-term deal as a player.
He knows what he wants to do next.
He wants to become a member of the Twins front office, shaping statistical analysis to help players.
“There’s zero chance I would be back on the field, as a coach,” he said. “I don’t want to do the traveling. I absolutely want to do something in player development, whether at the minor league level or the big-league level.
“I think there’s a spot for a lot of teams, for guys that played, and translating what sabermetrics and statistics can work for players. What players can use and what front offices can use are two completely different things. I think I can help with that.”
Perkins’ contract runs through 2017, with an option for 2018.
“If I play after that, it won’t be on a new long-term deal,” he said. “It will be year-to-year.”
Last spring, Perkins took the elevator to the third floor of the Twins spring training complex to sign his new deal, which could add up to $28 million over five years. As an All-Star closer, he may have made much more on the open market, but he wanted to ensure that he would finish his career with the Twins.
After signing, Perkins looked at Jack Goin, the Twins manager of major league administration and baseball research, and said, “When that’s done, I’m probably done.” And Jack said, ‘We’ll have a job waiting for you. We’ll find something.’ I told him my next contract would be in the Twins analytics department.
“There’s such a divide. The majority of players think analytics are crap. The majority of front offices are 70-30, analytics to scouting. So I think there’s a place in this organization when I’m done in finding what the players can use and what the team should use.
“Being in this clubhouse, I also know the human element, that sabermetrics tries to get rid of. I have a pretty good idea how both sides work.”
Perkins bought a house in Fort Myers with an eye to the future.
“It’s not a joke,” he said. “I want to do something. We bought the house down here planning on coming to spring training for the next 20 or 30 years. Whatever I end up doing, I would love to have a job that takes me down here every spring to watch and learn, and to help the team during the season.
“Our front office, and a lot of front offices, don’t have players. I don’t know what the job would be called, but if I get to come to spring training and help out, I’m in.”
Perkins made his major league debut in 2006, spending a couple of weeks with the Twins at the end of the season. He attended Brad Radke’s retirement news conference.
“He had a bad shoulder, but if he had wanted to, he could have kept on playing,” Perkins said. “He wanted to go spend time with his family. I respected that he didn’t let baseball define him. He wanted to be with his kids, wanted to be home, wanted to go fishing. He played enough years, made enough money.”
Twins General Manager Terry Ryan said he hasn’t thought about Perkins’ future. “I’ve always believed that players can play as long as they can,” Ryan said. “He’s going to have a lot of opportunities when he’s done playing.”
Perkins is attempting to build an all-Minnesota baseball career, from Stillwater High School to the University of Minnesota to career-long Twin.
“The one thing I know for sure is you will not see me with another team,” Perkins said. “I’m going to finish my career with the Twins. Then I want to start a new career with the Twins. This is the place for me.”