The Minnesota Twins are showing some interest in acquiring Red Sox right-hander Daniel Bard, reports Darren Wolfson of 1500ESPN.com. The Twins are reportedly in the "due-diligence phase" of checking in on Bard, who was designated for assignment by the Red Sox when rosters expanded on Sunday.
Boston has 10 days from the time of the DFA to either place Bard on waivers, trade him, or release him outright, so Minnesota has several avenues in which to acquire the right-hander, if they decide to do so.
At one point in time, Bard was a lights-out reliever in the big leagues. The right-hander put up a 2.88 ERA over 197 innings in his first three seasons with the Red Sox, boasting a nasty four-pitch repertoire that the club thought would work well as a starter.
The Sox tried moving Bard into the rotation at the start of 2012, but the experiment did not go well. The right-hander struggled with his command in his short time as a starter, and a move back to the bullpen was supposed to return everything to normal. It didn't.
Bard has toiled away in the minors for much of the last two years, posting a 6.84 earned-run average, walking 56 and throwing 20 wild pitches in just 47⅓ innings. While an abdominal strain slowed him down some this year, it doesn't fully explain his apparent contraction of Steve Blass disease.
If the Twins do acquire Bard, it will be as a reclamation project. The club selected the right-hander's brother, Luke, with the 42nd overall pick in the 2012 Draft, so perhaps they believe bringing the pair together will be beneficial.