The Minnesota Twins have been working all season to get their pitching staff in order. Demotions, call-ups, starters going to the bullpen -- and then back to the rotation. Anything to get production on the mound.
Well, the season-long pitching theme continued in this week's MLB First-Year Player Draft, when the Twins selected 24 pitchers -- well over half of their 43 overall picks. The club did much the same last season, drafting 35 pitchers out of 52 picks.
Of those 24 pitchers, 20 of them were from college, and eight were lefties. According to this MLB.com article, the Twins went with power over finesse. For instance, the club's two compensation picks, Jose Barrios and Luke Bard, can each throw in 96-mph range.
That article quotes Mike Radcliff, vice president of player personnel, saying:
"We're happy about [the power arms], no question," Radcliff said. "I know everybody says we're the pitch-to-contact Twins and all that, but that's really not our preference at all. It's how it played out over time with all the different pitchers we drafted, signed, and brought in.
"But we have just as much preference and desire to sign guys that throw hard as anybody else. It just hasn't played out that way. We did take a lot of guys with some arm strength, some power to their pitches."
Of the Twins' 19 position players, there were nine outfielders, six catchers and four infielders.
Of note: The Twins selected LJ Mazzilli, whose father, Lee Mazzilli, was a big league player and coach.
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