Twins lose Turley, drop Gimenez, O'Rourke

Twins lose Turley, drop Gimenez, O'Rourke

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Twins cleared three more spots on their 40-man roster Monday, as left-hander Nik Turley was claimed on waivers by the Pirates, while catcher Chris Gimenez and left-hander Ryan O'Rourke were both outrighted off the 40-man roster. Both Gimenez and O'Rourke have been outrighted previously and can elect free agency.

Minnesota also opened three 40-man roster spots Friday, as left-hander Randy Rosario was claimed on waivers from the Cubs, outfielder Daniel Palka was claimed on waivers from the White Sox and infielder Niko Goodrum cleared waivers and was outrighted off the roster.

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The Twins have been clearing roster space, as they have several prospects eligible for the Rule 5 Draft, including Stephen Gonsalves, Zack Littell, Kohl Stewart, Jake Reed, Lewin Diaz, Lewis Thorpe, Nick Burdi, Luke Bard and Ryan Eades.

Gimenez, 34, hit .220/.350/.382 with seven homers and 16 RBIs in 77 games with the Twins after being signed as a Minor League free agent before the season. The veteran was brought in for his leadership skills and quickly assimilated himself in the clubhouse. He was also named the winner of the annual Media Good Guy Award by the local chapter of the Baseball Writers' Asoociation of Anmerica and will be honored at the Diamond Awards in January.

Gimenez, who was eligible for arbitration this offseason, could return to the Twins on a Minor League deal, but Mitch Garver is likely to be Jason Castro's backup next season, which could cause Gimenez to look elsewhere.

O'Rourke, 29, is coming off Tommy John surgery that kept him out of action in 2017. He posted a 3.96 ERA with 24 strikeouts and 10 walks in 25 innings with the Twins in '16. He can become a free agent but there's a decent chance he'll remain with Minnesota in his first season back from surgery.

Turley, 28, had a strong year at Triple-A Rochester and Double-A Chattanooga, posting a 2.05 ERA with 124 strikeouts in 92 innings, but struggled in his first taste of the Majors with an 11.21 ERA, 13 strikeouts and eight walks in 17 2/3 innings.

Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.