While the Twins talked to representatives for free agent pitchers Dallas Keuchel and Craig Kimbrel, it was known there real interest was in the latter. Kimbrel, a closer, agreed to terms on a three-year, $43 million deal with the Chicago Cubs on Wednesday. On Thursday, Keuchel reportedly agreed to a deal with the Atlanta Braves.
Keuchel deal is for one year, $13 million. Physical is Friday in Atlanta. First start is scheduled for Saturday in Gwinnett.
— Tim Brown (@TBrownYahoo) June 7, 2019
There had been reports that the 32-year-old was being pursued by the New York Yankees, but the Braves needed starting pitching help and will get it in Keuchel. The lefthander won the American League Cy Young Award in 2015. He went 12-11 with a 3.74 ERA and 153 strikeouts last season for Houston and then started two playoff games and posted a 3.60 ERA.
Source: Yankees highest offer to Keuchel was for prorated one year, $17.9 million
— Andy Martino (@martinonyc) June 7, 2019
Atlanta entered Thursday in second place in the NL East two games behind Philadelphia with a 33-29 record.
Kimbrel and Keuchel were believed to be two of the top free agent pitchers on the market last winter, but instead were not signed during the offseason after turning down qualifying offers from the Red Sox and Astros, respectively.
They then sat on the market after the season began in part because no team wanted to give up the draft-pick compensation that would have come with signing them. That compensation went away on Monday when the MLB draft arrived.