Nelson Cruz knows his limitations, and he expects MLB to follow suit.
Cruz is 40 year old, and his days as a position player are far behind him. He’s still an electric hitter, as he batted .303 with 16 home runs in a shortened 2020 season. Prior to that, Cruz had a 41 home run campaign in 2019, in which he hit an even better mark of .313. It’s safe to say Cruz know his strengths, as he remains one of the best power hitters in the game despite his advanced age.
As Cruz is searching for a new home (assuming the Twins don’t bring him back sooner), he’s waiting for an already-initiated MLB rule change to become official. Rob Manfred toyed with several changes to the league in the 60-game season, but the one with the most sticking power is likely the universal designated hitter. Not only is it more practical, but it leads to a more exciting product and more jobs in the game of baseball. What’s not to love?
Despite the loud objection from baseball purists, universal DH is likely to pass
A universal designated hitter rule is likely to pass before the start of the new season, and has already played a role in labor talks between the players and owners for the new CBA. Assuming it’s passed, Cruz can look for a new home in both the American and National Leagues, which opens up some possibilities in terms of free agent destinations.
Teams like the Atlanta Braves, who could use a big bat if Marcell Ozuna leaves, would be interested in Cruz on a short-term deal. The Twins remain a potential suitor given their sustained success in the AL Central.
Needless to say, assuming the universal DH is a forgone conclusion, Cruz won’t have to wait long.