Twins to sign pitcher Jason Marquis?

According to a report by Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports, the Twins are nearing a deal with 33-year-old right-handed starting pitcher Jason Marquis. Marquis had signed a two-year $15 million deal  with the Washington Nationals after declaring free agency after the 2009 season. In mid April of 2010 Marquis suffered a right elbow injury and missed 99 games before returning in August and finishing the 2010 season with a 2-9 record and a 6.60 ERA. Marquis started the season with the Washington Nationals in 2011 and was 8-5 with a 3.95 ERA before being traded at the trade deadline at the end of July to the Arizona D-Backs where he pitched in just 3 games and gave up 16 runs in 11+ innings before suffering a broken fibula in early August and ending his season.

Jason Marquis

Marquis was an Atlanta Braves 1st round pick in 1996 and made he big league debut with the Braves on June 6, 2000. Marquis pitched for the Braves between 2000-2003 before being involved in a big trade when the Braves sent Marquis, Adam Wainwright, and Ray King to the St. Louis Cardinals for JD Drew and Eli Marrero. Marquis pitched for the Cardinals from 2004-2006, the Cubs from 2007-2008 and the Colorado Rockies in 2009. Between 2004 and 2009 Marquis averaged 196 innings and 13 wins. Jason Marquis was an All-Star in 2009 and ranked second in the league in double-play grounders induced.

Jason Marquis is one of those “inning eaters” the Twins are apparently looking for and he fits the Twins mold of pitch to contact because in his 12 seasons in the majors he has given up 1,758 hits and 645 walks in 1,675+ innings while striking out 974. I am not sure what Terry Ryan and the Twins see in this guy and I sure hope that they don’t pay him very much but you have to figure he will get at least $5 million. Maybe Marquis will just be a placeholder in the rotation until they reach a point in the season when they can bring up a youngster and move Marquis along once again and hopefully get something in return. Then again, this is not a done deal, just a report of a possible deal so I can still hope it falls apart.

UPDATE December 22 – The Twins have announced that they have reached a one year $3 million deal with Jason Marquis.

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