Nelson Cruz Returning to Minnesota Twins for 2021 Season
Minnesota Twins fans can exhale as the team has finally reached an agreement with designated hitter Nelson Cruz.
Cruz and the Twins have been negotiating on a new deal since the end of the 2020 season. On Overtime, most people linked into the Twins indicated that Cruz would wait to see if Major League Baseball would implement the DH rule for the National League before he would make his decision.
It seems to have played out that way. MLB announced recently that they are moving forward with an on-time start to the season under the old, traditional rules. The American League will use the DH, while the National League will not.
Once that was set into place, the deal between Cruz and the Twins became a lot easier. ESPN's Jeff Passan reports that the two have reached an agreement on another one-year deal worth $13 million.
The 40-year-old has become a fan favorite for Twins fans over the last two seasons. Between 2019 and 2020, Cruz has played in 173 games and has tallied 141 RBI's, 114 runs, 32 doubles, and 57 home runs according to Baseball Reference. He holds a .626 slugging percentage in his two seasons in Minnesota.
MLB.com's Do-Hyoung Park reports that Cruz was paid $14 million when he signed with the Twins in 2019. His option was exercised for the 2020 season for $12 million. The $13 million contract for Cruz and the Twins this season stays right in line with where they have been over the last two years.
Cruz will look to help the Twins, even more, this upcoming season after helping the team to two straight AL Central Division titles. Minnesota opens the 2021 regular season on April 1 in Milwaukee.
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