Twins rumors: Justin Morneau open to extension

Jesse Johnson-US PRESSWIRE

Twins 1B/DH Justin Morneau is willing to continue contract negotiations into the regular season.

First baseman/designated hitter Justin Morneau is open to re-signing with the Minnesota Twins, but he also understands that he may be entering the final season with the team that drafted him, according to Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports.

Morneau is set to enter the final year of his current contract with the Twins, which will pay him $14 million in 2013. He dealt with injuries, including concussions, that limited him to 150 games from 2010-11.

Morneau was able to return to play in 134 games for the Twins last season, hitting .267/.333/.440 with 26 doubles and 19 home runs over 570 plate appearances. Minnesota is hoping the former American League MVP will continue to return to form in 2013, producing a clip closer to his average batting line of .298/.372/.528 from 2006-10.

If Morneau does return to previous form and gets off to a hot start, but the Twins don't, he could become one of the most-coveted bats on the trade market. Morneau is willing to continue contract extension discussions into the regular season with the Twins, but Minnesota may be more interested in cashing him in for more prospects than keeping him around beyond 2013.

Over 10 years in the majors, Morneau, who turns 32 in May, owns a career batting line of .280/.351/.492.

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