Even with A.J. Pierzynski set to turn 37 later this month, the Minnesota Twins could find it difficult to lure their former catcher without a multiyear offer. "I'd be extremely shocked if he doesn't get at least two years," a baseball operations person from an American League club said Monday afternoon. "I don't see him ending up there (Minnesota) if they're only going to give him one year." A major league team official closely monitoring Pierzynski's free agency went even further, stating Monday evening that Pierzynski is "not going there" despite recent reports suggesting a reunion with the Twins was in the offing. At least two other clubs are "in the mix," the official said, but the Twins are not among them. The market for starting catchers narrowed a little more Monday with Dioner Navarro's decision to sign for $8 million over two years with the Toronto Blue Jays. The Twins had shown interest in Navarro as a possible mentor to holdover catching prospect Josmil Pinto, a fellow Venezuelan who turns 25 in March. Navarro's signing could lead to a trade of former first-round pick J.P. Arencibia, coming off a miserable season. Arencibia, projected to make $2.8 million through arbitration, also could be non-tendered by Monday's 10:59 p.m. CST deadline. The Twins also have inquired about Boston free agent Jarrod Saltalamacchia, who helped lead the Red Sox to a World Series title, as well as Pierzynski, whom they traded away 10 years ago last month. That deal with the Giants netted the Twins closer Joe Nathan and left-hander Francisco Liriano. Asked about the Pierzynski talks late Monday afternoon, a Twins official said in a text message: "Nothing to report at this time." Though Pierzynski's on-base percentage slipped to a career-low .297 this year in Texas -- a hitter's paradise -- he managed to throw out a career-best 33 percent of attempted base stealers (24 of 73) while logging more than 1,000 innings behind the plate for a 12th straight season. Boston reportedly remains interested in Pierzynski, who spent eight seasons with the Chicago White Sox (2005-2012), winning a World Series title in his first season on the South Side. The AL baseball operations person works for a team that has investigated signing Pierzynski, who made $7.5 million this season on a one-year deal with Texas. The Rangers are not attempting to bring him back after signing Geovany Soto, who is six years younger. "I'm sure he's waiting for highest bidder: Who's going to give him the most years?" the baseball operations person said of Pierzynski. "I don't blame him. Somebody is going to give him at least two years. There's such a shortage of catching. There's just not much out there."
Twins out of A.J. Pierzynski bidding, major league team official says
St. Paul Pioneer Press | Dec 3