Twins trade pitching prospect to Braves

The Minnesota Twins traded right-handed pitching prospect Billy

Bullock to the Atlanta Braves, which allows them to retain Rule 5

draft choice Scott Diamond.

The Twins announced the deal Monday. They plucked the

left-handed Diamond out of the Braves’ system in December. He

allowed one earned run on six hits in six innings of work during

spring training. But he missed two weeks with a blister on his left

thumb and wasn’t deemed ready for the opening day roster.

Because he will start the year at Triple-A Rochester, the Twins

had to work out a deal with the Braves for Diamond or put him

through waivers before they could retain him.

”I’m real excited about it,” Diamond said. ”It’s been a tough

day and a half. Now that I have some information and know where I’m

going, I’m really excited about it. Hopefully I’ll get a chance to

contribute this year. I’ll try to get some more innings in and get

some more work in.”

The Twins drafted Bullock in the second round in 2009. He struck

out 60 batters in 36 2-3 innings at Double-A New Britain last