The Kennys Vargas era in Cincinnati lasted about as long as a Joey Votto plate appearance, as the Minnesota Twins have claimed the 27-year-old slugger after the Reds tried to slip him through waivers for the purpose of sending him to Triple-A Louisville.
The fit was dubious at best in the first place, as Votto has first base locked down for the foreseeable future in Cincinnati — he’s signed through 2023 — and there’s no DH in the National League.
We raised the question on the Locked on Twins podcast recently, and it seems to have been verified: Would the Twins have attempted to send Vargas out if they knew Jorge Polanco was going to be suspended for PEDs?
The Twins designated Vargas for assignment on March 16, placed him on waivers on March 20 and saw him claimed by the Reds on March 22. In the meantime, Polanco was suspended 80 games for a positive test for Stanozolol — the same drug Ervin Santana was suspended for in 2017 — on March 18.
Vargas has hit .281/.378/.375 with three doubles in 37 plate appearances this spring.