The possibility of a blowout reunion between Carlos Correa and the Twins is growing, team sources said Monday night.
With the status of the mega-deal he made with the New York Mets last month unresolved, the Twins are suddenly back in the mix for the free agent shortstop. Two club sources said on Monday talks between the Twins and Correa had started to pick up speed. A separate major league source also confirmed the development.
The talks are smooth and the Mets aren’t necessarily off the hook. But 19 days have passed since the Mets reached an agreement with Correa on a 12-year, $315 million deal, pending a physical. The Mets, like the San Francisco Giants before them, were concerned about the condition of Correa’s right ankle during their medical examination. As the parties continue to negotiate contract language, Correa’s agent Scott Boras has contacted other teams, including the Twins.
In November, Correa opted out of the three-year, $105.3 million contract he signed with the Twins in March 2022. Still, the club hadn’t been shy about wanting to retain Correa, who hit . 291/.366/.467 with 22 home runs, 64 RBIs and 4.9 RBIs over substitution last season.
Minnesota’s initial efforts, which included a 10-year, $285 million offer, fell through when Correa agreed to a 13-year, $350 million contract with the Giants on Dec. 14. A week after signing with San Francisco, the deal fell apart over a difference of opinion over Correa’s physical exam. The Mets deal quickly stalled for the same reason.
Despite those worries, Boras and the Mets tried to find a way to bring the two-time All-Star shortstop to New York. Correa was originally so thrilled to hear the Mets sign him last month that he dumped Boras on a hotel bed during a celebration.
The Twins, however, have remained in constant contact with Boras, sources said, creating a potential landing spot if Correa’s deal with the Mets falls apart.
All along, the Twins expected Correa and the Mets to finalize their deal, but Twins president of baseball operations Derek Falvey prepared his club just in case.
While sources said the Twins always knew a big market club could ‘blow them out of the water’ on a bigger deal, the team have made it clear they are very interested in the return. de Correa and was open to creativity with potential for withdrawal. and other protections in an agreement.
Back in March, Boras praised the Twins’ front office for their creativity when the two sides closed the initial deal for Correa within 14 hours. The Twins have also gained experience setting up incentive deals after agreeing a seven-year, $100 million extension for oft-injured center fielder Byron Buxton in December 2021, a contract that includes up to to $10 million in annual performance bonuses based on staying on the estate.
While the Twins would certainly like to conduct their own physical examination with Correa, the team already have an idea of his overall condition after carrying out a thorough examination last March.
Even though the Twins conducted an exit review on Correa in October, those are often limited to areas of concern that arose during regular-season player visits to the coach’s room. Aside from an incident in May when Correa thought he had broken his finger, team sources say the shortstop never set foot in the coach’s room, not even after writhing in pain on the ground after a brutal slide into second base during a Sept. 20 contest. in Kansas City.
After that game, Correa admitted he had a metal plate inserted into his right leg, following an injury he sustained while in the minor leagues in 2014.
“He just hit my plate,” Correa said, referring to the material in his leg. “I had surgery and he hit him. Just a little numb. Vibrant. So I was just waiting for it to calm down. It was a bit scary, but when I moved I knew I was good.
Aside from the finger, which cost him 12 games, and a late May bout with COVID-19, which resulted in eight missed games, Correa has been pretty durable for the Twins. He appeared in 136 of the remaining 142 games and was part of the roster for a Twins side that suffered injury after injury throughout the season.
The Twins loved what Correa brought them in their only season together, a mix of swagger and baseball savvy. And now, in another stunning twist, they are able to bring the Correa saga full circle back to Minnesota.
(Top photo: Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)
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