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Twins sign lefty reliever Duke to one-year deal

MLB.com @RhettBollinger

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Twins signed left-handed reliever Zach Duke on a one-year deal, the club announced Tuesday.

Duke, 34, made his return from Tommy John surgery last season, posting a 3.93 ERA with 12 strikeouts and six walks in 18 1/3 innings with the Cardinals. The Twins are hoping he'll continue to improve his command, as he made a quick return from the operation. Duke had surgery in mid-October 2016, but returned to the Cardinals by July 21.

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Twins signed left-handed reliever Zach Duke on a one-year deal, the club announced Tuesday.

Duke, 34, made his return from Tommy John surgery last season, posting a 3.93 ERA with 12 strikeouts and six walks in 18 1/3 innings with the Cardinals. The Twins are hoping he'll continue to improve his command, as he made a quick return from the operation. Duke had surgery in mid-October 2016, but returned to the Cardinals by July 21.

Duke is expected to pair with Taylor Rogers as the club's two primary left-handed relievers. Before his surgery, Duke had an impressive stretch from 2014-16, posting a 2.74 ERA with 208 strikeouts in 180 1/3 innings.

Duke has a career 4.30 ERA in 13 seasons in the Majors with the Pirates, D-backs, Nationals, Reds, Brewers, White Sox and Cardinals.

The Twins have also been linked with slugger Mike Napoli, but a source told MLB.com's Mark Feinsand that reports of the two being in serious talks aren't true.

The Twins already signed Fernando Rodney to a $4.5 million deal with a one-year club option to be the club's closer.

Minnesota's 40-man roster is full.

Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and Facebook.

Minnesota Twins, Zach Duke