COMMENTARY | As expected, the Minnesota Twins are in selling mode as they come up to the MLB trade deadline July 31. There isn't too much to make general managers on contending teams drool at what the team is dangling, but there's enough for the team to make at least one move.
A list of possible candidates is tough, but the names that could be sent packing could be surprising as the team prepares for a wave of top prospects to make their debuts in the near future.
The former American League MVP has been considered trade bait over the past calendar year as he enters the final year of his contract. Injuries have taken their toll on the first baseman, and it's led to a weak season at the plate with eight home runs in 371 at-bats.
While the return will not be as great as it would have been several years ago, the Twins have the need to move Morneau in order to make room for Chris Colabello to play first and hand Chris Parmelee his final chance to contribute at the major-league level.
Several teams, including the Baltimore Orioles (according to The Baltimore Sun) and Toronto Blue Jays (according to The Boston Globe), have called about Morneau's services, but it remains to be seen if they're willing to give up anything useful.
Either way, Morneau's days as a Twin seem to be numbered.
Perkins is an interesting case because he is the Twins' best trade chip on the roster with Josh Willingham on the disabled list.
An All-Star selection for the first time in 2013, Perkins has been toward the top of several statistical categories among AL closers. His services could be irresistible to a team in need of solidifying their bullpen, but that market shrunk when the Detroit Tigers acquired Jose Veras from the Houston Astros.
Trading Perkins makes sense if the Twins can get a good haul for him, but keeping him makes sense as well. He has an affordable contract that runs through 2015 with a team option in 2016, making him good and cheap.
That combination would fill a void in the back of the bullpen without spending a ton of money to do it. Due to that, I think Perkins stays.
Doumit's stats aren't something that will get scouts to throw something major at the Twins but as he is in the final year of a two-year contract, all it takes is a call.
Mike Berardino of the St. Paul Pioneer Press tweeted that Doumit was "very available" but teams were concerned about his defensive abilities, and he's more likely to windup a bench player on a contender.
That might be a hint that if Doumit is traded, it would happen prior to the Sept. 1 waiver trade deadline.
Crain has had a successful return from a series of shoulder injuries earlier in his career, and Burton did the same with a terrific 2012 season. He hasn't had the same form in 2013, but like Perkins, he can be an asset for a team looking for help in the back of the bullpen.
Along with Burton, there could be many names in the Twins' bullpen (Brian Duensing and Casey Fien possibly) that could be involved in a minor deal that could net a key piece on a contributor down the road. It's a real possibility that Burton is dealt to a contender.
Is it possible that a team with the worst starting rotation ERA in baseball has a piece that a contender would want? It is when you consider the month of July that Pelfrey has had.
Signing a one-year deal after undergoing Tommy John surgery in April 2012, Pelfrey got destroyed during the first two months of the season. However, he was decent in June and turned it on this month with a 2.28 ERA in four starts.
It's an incredibly small sample size, but perhaps Pelfrey is getting healthy at the right time. Extending his contract now wouldn't be a smart move for the player if that's the case, so maybe the Twins will send him away and make a run at him during the offseason.
Chris Schad is a lifelong Twins follower that has spent a majority of his life cheering the Twins on through the dark '90s and success of five American League Central championships in the 2000s. His work has also been published on Bleacher Report. You can follow him on Twitter @crishad.
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