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09/21/08 2:53 PM ET
Reyes prepares for free agency
Twins reliever says he would like to stay in Minnesota
By Kelly Thesier / MLB.com
ST. PETERSBURG -- Left-hander Dennys Reyes has spent over a decade in the Major Leagues, but he's said that he didn't truly find a home until he signed with the Twins three years ago. The question now is whether Minnesota will remain his home. With only seven games remaining in the regular season, Reyes is approaching the end of his two-year, $2 million contract with the Twins, and he's eligible to become a free agent once the season is over. "I would like to stay, want to stay," Reyes said on Sunday. "These guys gave me an opportunity to become who I am, be the pitcher that I am. At the same time, I've been working hard for this -- the opportunity that I have now to take care of my family. Everything is going to come down to what is best for my family. Hopefully [the Twins] will step forward and try to do something." Reyes said there haven't been any discussions between him and the Twins' front office regarding a contract extension. The 31-year-old lefty, who is 3-0 with a 2.40 ERA in 2008, now expects to wait until the season is over before figuring out whether the Twins might still be in his future. He pointed to the fact that the Twins currently have a few left-handed options on the roster. Along with Craig Breslow, who the Twins acquired off waivers from Cleveland in June, the team has been impressed with the emergence of callup Jose Mijares. "I don't know what their plans are," Reyes said of the Twins. "They have some decisions to make." Despite having played for a total of eight teams prior to Minnesota, Reyes had never posted an ERA below 3.79 before arriving with the Twins. In 2006, Reyes had a breakthrough season as he went 5-0 with an 0.89 ERA, the lowest ERA of any reliever with more than 50 appearances that season. Last year, Reyes suffered a bit of a setback due to an injury-plagued season, as he pitched just 29 1/3 innings. But this year, Reyes has rebounded once again. Along with his 2.40 ERA, the left-hander recorded a career-high number of appearances (73) and has a 1.18 WHIP. Reyes has given credit for the success he's found in Minnesota to the Twins' coaching staff. He said it's the way they've used him in the bullpen, as just a situational lefty in specific roles, which has allowed him to flourish again this year. The left-hander has been satisfied with how he's been able to perform so far this season. Yet he hopes that he'll get some more time to showcase what he can do if the Twins can extend their season into October. "I'm pretty happy with what I've accomplished this year, because my goal was to have a good year if I have to go to free agency," Reyes said. "We still have at least a week to go to finish it. Hopefully it will be even longer."
Kelly Thesier is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.