10/25/2007 12:30 PM ET
Nathan: Twins picking up 2008 option
After making $5.25 million in '07, closer will earn $6 million
By Kelly Thesier / MLB.com
In 2007, Joe Nathan converted 37 of his 41 save chances and went 4-2 with a 1.88 ERA. (Jim Mone/AP)
MINNEAPOLIS -- The Twins are going to pick up Joe Nathan's $6 million option for the 2008 season in the coming days, the closer confirmed Thursday morning.
Nathan said that the two sides are in the process of making it official.
"They told us that they are sending some paperwork, so we're waiting on that right now," Nathan said.
When reached late Wednesday night, Twins general manager Bill Smith that he would not confirm nor comment on the team's plans for the option. The Twins have the choice of picking up the option or paying Nathan a $1 million buyout.
Last season, Nathan made $5.25 million and became the first Twins pitcher to record 35-plus saves in four consecutive seasons. Nathan converted 37 of his 41 save opportunities while going 4-2 with a 1.88 ERA in 68 appearances.
Nathan said during the final week of the 2007 season that if his option was picked up, he would still be interested in discussing a contract extension with the club. There were some initial talks between the two sides about an extension during Spring Training, but the talks did not progress much after that.
Dave Pepe, Nathan's agent, said Thursday that he's been in contact with Smith, but there had been no change in the talks regarding a longer term deal.
"Bill and I have talked about a lot of different things, but we haven't specifically talked about an extension or numbers," Pepe said. "I think they are hopeful and Joe is hopeful that something can get done."
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