My take, such as it may be!
November 25, 2007 – Torii Hunter was fun to watch and I will miss him patrolling center field at the Dome for the Minnesota Twins in 2008 and beyond. Having said that, I have to agree with Twins management on this one, the Twins are not in a position to give a 32 year old outfielder a five year $90 million deal when they have a number of good young players that they need to sign in the next few years. We just can’t tie up that kind of money even if it is Torii Hunter. Torii apparently wants to play for a championship team and his perception is that the Twins can not attain that status over the next few years, time will tell, so he probably would have passed on the Twins even if they had offered him the big bucks. A number of former Twins players that left here via free agency have stated publicly that leaving the Twin Cities was a mistake. we will see what the future holds for Torii. This may sound like sour grapes but I think that Torii has lost a step the last year or so, maybe it’s the ankle he broke in Boston or maybe it is just time, but there have been balls that have dropped in for hits recently that would have been caught by Hunter in the past. We also need to remember that we did not win the division with Torii last year and resigning Torii to take an even larger piece of the financial pie still leaves us with huge holes at 3B, DH, and possibly 2B to fill.
Most Twins fans wish the best for Torii and I think they will welcome him back when he runs out to center field at the Dome on March 31 to open the 2008 season, but this time as a member of the opposition when the Twins open their 2008 season against the Los Angeles Angels.