MINNEAPOLIS — Breathe easy, Twins fans... it appears the Boomstick is back.
Multiple sources, including The Athletic's Dany Hayes, say Nelson Cruz has struck a one-year deal with the Twins for $13 million. The 40-year-old Cruz has made a huge impact in Minnesota since signing as a free agent in 2019, hitting .308 with 57 homers and a .626 slugging percentage in two seasons. He has been named the Twins' Most Valuable Player both seasons.
Not only has he thrived on the field, Cruz has been a steady presence in the clubhouse, providing leadership and mentoring young players.
The only question that remains is whether Cruz will be able to stay ahead of Father Time, and stay on pitches from younger, strong-armed athletes. "One reason the Twins are willing to invest in Cruz again is they believe in his meticulous regimen and the way he takes care of himself," writes The Athletic's Hayes. "Known for his ability to nap in the middle of a loud, crowded clubhouse, Cruz works relentlessly to stay in top shape and then rests judiciously so he can do it all again the next day. But whether he can keep this up at has age — he turns 41 in July — is a big question."
It's a question that will begin to be answered Feb. 17 when the Twins open training camp for the full squad. Pitchers and catchers report to the club's training facility in Fort Myers, FL Feb. 12.