Correspondent Yoon-Jun Ko = The Minnesota Twins have expanded their roster of left-handed outfielders by acquiring Joey Gallo this offseason. As a result, he tried to trade Max Kepler, the oldest and the most expensive, but it doesn’t seem easy.
‘The Athletic’ reporter Dan Hays said on the 3rd (Korean time), “Minnesota tried to trade Kepler. However, he did not have any attractive offers, and it seems that we will finish the season with him.”
Kepler made his big league debut in 2015 and played only in Minnesota until last season. He recorded a career batting average of 0.232, 129 home runs, and 400 RBIs with an OPS of 0.744. In particular, in 2019, he had a career high season with a batting average of 0.252, 36 home runs, 90 RBIs, and an OPS of 0.855. 메이저놀이터
However, his slump deepened after that, and last season he crashed with a batting average of 0.227, 9 homers, 43 RBIs, and an OPS of 0.666. There is a $10 million club option for the 2024 season, but Minnesota is unlikely to execute it. Then, after this season, he becomes a free agent.
Kepler strayed from Minnesota’s plan, signed Gallo, and planned a trade. However, as the trade failed, a new plan is needed.
Right now Minnesota has a lot of lefty outfielders. Starting with newly recruited Gallo, there are Trevor Ranachi, Matt Wallner, Nick Gordon and Alex Kirillov.
‘MLB Trade Rumors’ said, “Minnesota needs to clean up the outfield where many left-handed hitters are currently flocking. Gallo and Kepler could play first base, and even Byron Buxton could be sent to first base to avoid injury. Other than that, Ranachi and Gordon can head for the designated hitter,” he suggested.