The Minnesota Twins were among the finalists for newly-signed Dodgers lefty Chris Capuano, and now general manager Terry Ryan must turn to other options as he attempts to upgrade his rotation.
One name on the Twins’ list: Jeff Francis.
The Twins have had initial talks with a representative for Francis, a source said, and the sides are likely to have further discussions at the winter meetings in Dallas next week. The Canadian left-hander went 6-16 with a 4.82 ERA for the Royals this season, his first as an American League pitcher.
The Twins also are interested in free-agent right-hander Edwin Jackson but are wary of his price tag, according to a major-league source. Jackson, represented by Scott Boras, is coming off a season in which he went 12-9 with a 3.79 ERA in 199-2/3 innings for the White Sox and Cardinals.
The starting rotation is one of many areas where the Twins must improve if they want to contend in 2012. At present, their rotation figures to include a combination of Carl Pavano, Scott Baker, Francisco Liriano, Brian Duensing, Nick Blackburn, and Kevin Slowey; Baker and Blackburn were sidelined by injuries at the end of the 2011 season.
-- Jon Paul Morosi