The Twins have said no position player is off-limits in trade talks. That includes Justin Morneau. (Jesse Johnson-US PRESSWIRE)

MLB Trade Rumors: Justin Morneau Available

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The Twins are 15 games under .500 and in last place in the American League Central.  They have no shot at

the postseason this year, and the make-up of the team will likely be much different in 2013.  The Twins may start with a trade that includes Justin Morneau.

According to the Pioneer Press’s John Shipley, Terry Ryan, the Twins’ GM, said no position player was off-limits in trade talks.  That includes Morneau.  Ryan has been frustrated by the Twin meager offense and their pitching woes.  He knows the team needs help in the rotation, but he will have to trade position players to get it.  Morneau doesn’t want to leave.

“I definitely don’t want to leave here,” Morneau said. “I can’t really see myself in any other uniform, you know? If there is something they feel can make this team better, like I said, that’s out of my control. My preference would be to stay here and play here as long as I can; sometimes that stuff’s out of our control.”

The 31-year old first baseman is hitting .249/.312/.432.  He is a shell of the player he was from 2006 (when he won the MVP) through 2010 (when he hit .345).  However, he seems healthy.  He’s already played 73 games – four more than all of last season.  He is eight games short of reaching the 81 he played in 2010.

Health will be a big concern for teams interested in a trade, but Morneau will be more than a half-season rental for any team acquiring him.  He is not a free agent until after next year.  He is due to make $14 million in 2013 and is making $14 million this year.

Morneau has battled back from a concussion that left him sidelined for a large chunk of time.  He simply hasn’t been able to get back on track at the plate.  Last season, as Morneau attempted his first return, he hit .227/.285/.333.  He’s shown improvement this season, but it hasn’t been enough for Terry Ryan and the last-place Twins.

For more on the Twins, be sure to check out Puckett’s Pond

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Tags: Justin Morneau Minnesota Twins

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