The Minnesota Twins' search for an established closer appears to be heating up.
Among multiple potential pitching acquisitions for Minnesota, the club has already checked on Toronto Blue Jays right-hander Ken Giles and San Diego Padres right-hander Kirby Yates, according to La Velle E. Neal III of the Minneapolis Star Tribune.
Scouts from the Blue Jays and Padres - as well as those from the Arizona Diamondbacks and Pittsburgh Pirates - recently attended games played by the Twins' Triple-A affiliate, the Rochester Red Wings. Infielder Nick Gordon, outfielder Brent Rooker, and left-hander Stephen Gonsalves are some of the top prospects Minnesota could move for an established pitcher.
The Twins have converted 26 saves and blown only six this season - the latter being the second fewest in the majors. However, Taylor Rogers (12-for-15) and Blake Parker (10-for-11) have only 48 career saves between the two of them for the American League Central-leading squad.
Giles, meanwhile, has registered 104 saves during six years with the Blue Jays, Philadelphia Phillies, and Houston Astros, and is in the midst of a sensational season in Toronto (1.45 ERA with 15.3 strikeouts per nine innings).
Padres general manager A.J. Preller reportedly could try to maximize Yates' value by trading him at the deadline. The All-Star has an MLB-leading 30 saves with only one blown opportunity to go along with a 1.15 ERA and 0.79 WHIP.