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For $7 million a year over the next two years. I wish Twitchy the best, but geez, if you are going to spend that much on a reliever, you should have at least some assurance that he will be healthy. Of course, the Rangers inked a tv deal worth $3 billion not too long ago, so I guess they can afford to take a $14.5 million flier on a 37 year-old with Tommy John surgery in his recent past. It sounds like Nathan pounced on the Rangers' deal right away, and I don't blame him. The closer market is pretty crowded this year, with Francisco Rodriguez, Jonathon Broxton, and Heath Bell still looking for work. All these guys are younger and arguably better than Nathan at this point in his career, so it's unlikely he would have found a better deal elsewhere. It is going to be really weird seeing him in anything other than a Twins uniform, though.
As for the Twins, their bullpen was going to be a mess whether they re-signed Nathan or not. The Twins had one of the worst bullpens in the league last year, with a 4.51 ERA, 4.43 FIP, and 3.79 K/BB ratio. Glen Perkins was the best of a sorry lot, though Nathan picked it up towards the end of the season and finished with a 2.74 FIP in September and October. With so many holes to fill, it wouldn't have been prudent for the Twins to plunk down $7 million a season on one reliever. Of course, the down side is that this makes it much more likely the Twins will re-sign Matt Capps, who probably won't cost much given his horrible performance in 2011. Huzzah.