If I were to show you the entire pool of available major league free agents, and then ask you to pick the most Twins players, who would you select? You might select Orlando Cabrera. You might select Nick Punto. You might select Aaron Miles. And you might select Jamey Carroll.
About that last one -
So predictable. Jamey Carroll is officially a Minnesota Twin, and the Twins are giving him a two-year guarantee.
Carroll will be signing with the Twins to serve as the regular shortstop. The Twins thought they'd found a shortstop a year ago when they imported Tsuyoshi Nishioka, but then Nishioka batted .226 with zero home runs, so the Twins are signing a guy who batted .290 with zero home runs. One of those numbers is an improvement!
It's easy to be snarky about this. The Twins have been in dire need of offensive help, so they've gone out and signed a 37-year-old who hasn't homered since 2009. Carroll has all of 12 home runs in his entire career, although in his defense, that would be 13 if it weren't for Raul Ibanez.
But while Carroll doesn't provide any power - he's slugged .348 - he brings average and the ability to get on base. Over the last three years, he's hit .286/.364/.343, with a decent number of stolen bases for good measure. He's a capable defender, and he's versatile, too, should the Twins ever want to move him around. He can cut it at short, he can cut it at second, and he can cut it at third.
Carroll is such an obvious fit with Minnesota. There are legitimate concerns, given that he turns 38 next February. And this contract, while not big, isn't insignificant. But he could and should help, and in the event that somebody else emerges, it's doubtful that he'd be hard to move in a trade. Bad teams usually don't sign old players, but I think the Twins have done fine.