Twins send Nick Blackburn and $14 million contract to minors
To create room on the roster for new closer Matt Capps the Twins have demoted Nick Blackburn to Triple-A. Minnesota misguidedly gave Blackburn a four-year, $14 million contract this offseason instead of simply going year-to-year with a player they controlled through 2013 anyway. Blackburn succeeded for two seasons despite a horrible strikeout rate and mediocre ground-ball percentage, but was bumped from the rotation last week after posting an MLB-worst 6.53 ERA in 18 starts and is now headed to Rochester following one poor relief outing. Because they owe him $13.25 million for the next three seasons the Twins are heavily invested in getting Blackburn turned around, so joining the rotation at Triple-A makes plenty of sense. Brian Duensing has done well in two starts since replacing Blackburn in Minnesota’s rotation.