Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Update: Hunter Option Picked Up

The Associated Press and the Star Tribune have reported that Torii Hunter's $12 million option for the 2007 season has been picked up. In all honesty, I felt like I would have been happy either way. That is, I would have understood if they let him go, since Hunter is not really a $12 million player the way Johan Santana is and we may see a potentially huge decline in the next year or so.

At the same time, no logical repclaments exist for the Twins, in their system or in free agency, and all reports suggest Hunter to be a great clubhouse guy and integral to their chemistry. In the wake of Derek Jeter's classless act of non-leadership with the A-Rod affair, I have recently questioned the idea of "clubhouse" leader, but Hunter is certainly an important guy, but having Santana, Mike Redmond, and others in that clubhouse is probably just as important.

All things being equal, I'm fairly happy with the decision. Hunter is a true Twin who does play the game hard, even if that results in catostrophic events like that of Game Two, and his heart is always in the game and with his teammates. With Radke gone next year, we need guys like that just because the Twins can't be as competitive if they don't show the same fire they did from June on this year.

5 comments:

ubelmann said...

Certainly NOT picking up the option would've been a bad move. The only two reasonable options from where I sit are retaining him or trading him. Draft pick compensation is nice, but we could do better by trading him.

Whether or not keeping him around is a good idea is certainly open to debate, but I think the Twins had to pick up the option.

Nick N. said...

I'm in full agreement with you there. They had to pick up the option. Letting him walk and throwing away $2 million was simply not an option.

The $12 million they'll have to pay Hunter next year is entirely too much and it will cripple their payroll for 2007, but at least they will be completely off the hook following next season. Signing him beyond 2007 would be, in my mind, a huge mistake.

Nick M. said...

Agree there. As much as it would nice to see him a Twin for his career, he is not worth the money he thinks he is over the next few years. The Twins would have to be crazy to pay him over $5 million when he is 35 or 36.

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