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Rumor Central: Twins considering run at top free-agent starters?

Following a 26-game improvement in 2017, the Minnesota Twins might be thinking big when it comes to the free-agent pitching market.

Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports the Twins are “considering a run” at one of the big free agents on the market, a list that is topped by Yu Darvish and Jake Arrieta and also includes Lance Lynn and Alex Cobb.

Heyman says the Twins' ownership has “big faith” in the new management team of president Derek Falvey and GM Thad Levine after the Twins stunningly won 85 games this year and advanced to the playoffs for the first time in seven years.

While Darvish and Arrieta might result in some sticker shock, Lynn and Cobb, a pair of 30-year-old right-handers who have undergone Tommy John surgery, could be more reasonably priced targets.

After missing 2016 surgery, Lynn tied for the National League lead with 33 starts and went 11-8 with a 3.43 ERA for the Cardinals this year. Cobb posted a 12-10 record with a 3.66 ERA in 29 starts for the Rays in 2017, his second season following the Tommy John procedure.

Cobb and Lynn rank eighth and 16th, respectively, on Keith Law's list of Top 50 free agents. Both received qualifying offers earlier this week, which could complicate things for the Twins due to the potential requirement of draft-pick compensation.

- Doug Mittler

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