Kendrys Morales signs with Twins: First Baseman will not be a Brewer

Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

The Brewers had been oft-rumored as being highly interested in Morales, but the first baseman had instead chosen to sign with Minnesota.

After months of rumors surrounding the Brewers and first baseman Kendrys Morales, it all came to naught. Morales has instead signed with the Minnesota Twins, reports CBS Sports' Jon Heyman.

The Brewers and Morales had been linked often as the team has struggled to find consistent first base production the past couple of years with Corey Hart missing all of 2013, then leaving in free agency.

It's possible Morales would indeed be a Brewer at this point if Mark Reynolds hadn't impressed so much this season. Reynolds signed a minor league deal to join Milwaukee in the offseason, and so far has a .745 OPS in 51 games. Most of that has come from his outstanding power numbers (.451 SLG%, 13 home runs) as he has just a .295 OBP.

Morales had turned down a qualifying offer from the Mariners early on last offseason, meaning any team needing to sign him prior to the draft would have had to forfeit their first round pick. That kept him from finding an interested team at the price range for which he was looking. With the draft having begun on Thursday, however, teams were free to sign Morales with no penalty.

The Brewers, Mariners, Yankees and Rangers had been the most oft-rumored teams in pursuit of Morales. The Twins jumping in is a bit of a surprise, particularly since they are in last place in the AL Central and are unlikely to compete at all. That could mean the Brewers' -- and other teams -- interest was not actually large enough that they were willing to offer much money for half a season of production.

If the Brewers are to look for an offensive upgrade this season, it will have to be on the trade market now. However, the lineup has been performing better of late so it may not be an urgent concern.

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