MINNEAPOLIS — Spring training is still more than three months away, but the Twins have started the process of revamping their pitching staff.
The club announced Monday that they have declined a $7.5 million option on left-hander Martin Pérez, while making a $17.8 million qualifying offer to All-Star right-hander Jake Odorizzi.
Pérez will receive a $500,000 buyout as part of a contract agreed to last winter that paid him a $3.5 million salary this year.
The 28-year-old was 10-7 with a 5.12 ERA in 29 starts and three relief appearances this year, striking out 135 and walking 67 in 165 1/3 innings. He is 53-56 with a 4.72 ERA in eight major league seasons that include 157 starts and 16 relief appearances.
Odorizzi, 29, was a career-best 15-7 with a 3.51 ERA and a career-high 178 strikeouts. He is 22-17 in two seasons since the Twins acquired him from Tampa Bay.
Minnesota also said Monday the New York Mets claimed left-hander Stephen Gonsalves off waivers. Minnesota right-hander Kohl Stewart refused an outright assignment to Triple-A Rochester and elected to become a free agent.
The Twins offense carried the club to the opening round of the playoffs, where they were quickly swept by the New York Yankees. Many pointed to the lack of depth on the starting staff as the major reason for the first-round ouster.