Tuesday, June 7, 2011

MLB Draft: 2011 Twins 1st Round

Watching the first round of the MLB Draft on Monday night was an up-and-down experience for many different clubs. The future of an entire organization can be changed with one night. Picking one player can change the path that your favorite team has in the years to come.

It was a long process for many Twins fans to wait until the 30th pick in the first round to hear who the Twins would select. The Twins would also make two other picks on the opening night of the draft. The 50th and 55th picks in the Comp Round of the draft were for losing type-A free agents, Jesse Crain and Orlando Hudson.

The Twins needs entering the draft were to add:
1. Pitching depth
2. Middle infield depth
3. Power bats

The Twins were able to address all of these needs in the first night of the draft. They picked a middle infielder, a corner infielder that can hit for power, and power throwing high school pitcher. There are still many picks left over the next two days so the Twins still have plenty of time to continue to address their needs

Pick #30: Levi Michael - Shortstop - University of North Carolina
Michael as a second baseman for UNC (Photo: AP)
Michael was considered the best shortstop in the draft by many entities that examine the draft. He is a switch hitter that has started to show power later in his college career. Michael also has speed on the base-paths, an asset that the Twins were striving for at the MLB level this season. Some scouts question his arm at shortstop so there is a possibility that the Twins could move Michael to second base. He has shown the ability to play multiple positions at the college level and he started each of his seasons there at a different spot in the infield (3B, 2B, and SS). Michael suffered through an ankle injury in this past season and that might have allowed him to drop to the Twins at pick 30

Fast Facts: The last two shortstops the Twins took in the first round were Trevor Plouffe in 2004 and Michael Cuddyer in 1997.

Pick #50: Travis Harrison - Third Baseman - Tustin High School (California)
A beefy corner infielder that can add some power to the middle of a line-up with the Twins minor league system. He has shown the ability of hitting upper deck shots in major league stadiums. He even hit a HR 504 feet in high school. In his younger playing career, he was compared to last year's first pick in the draft, Bryce Harper. Like Harper, Harrison will most likely be asked to make the transition to another position (either OF or 1B). The Twins would be more than happy to have Harrison develop into the kind of talent that Harper has shown in his first minor league season. Harrison is committed to USC so it will be imperative for the Twins to strike a deal in the coming weeks.

Fast Facts: The Twins last 3B picked in the first round was Matt Moses in 2003. Moses never made it higher than AA and left the Twins organization in 2009.

Pick #55: Hudson Boyd - Pitcher - Bishop Verot High School (Florida)
Boyd is a stocky right-handed thrower that weighs in at 235 pounds on his 6'2" frame. His fastball clocks in the mid-90s and he has a decent curveball. He would need to continue to add pitches to his repertoire to be ready for the big league level. This pick seems to go out of the traditional model for the Twins. He is not a finesse pitcher like many of the Twins recent pitching selections. He is a big boy that can hurl the ball toward the plate. He has made a commitment to Florida so the Twins will have to entice him to join their organization instead of going to college.

Fast Facts: Boyd is the third pitcher the Twins have taken in the first round since 2009, but he is the first high school pitcher in that group.


JoeBraga said...

Best SS? No... Baez was drafted 9... come on.
Also, LeCroy was a first round pick out of Clemson in 97...

NoDak Twins Fan said...

Congratulations are in order for Mr. Baez.