Twins MLB draft glance since 1998: Rounds 21-50

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the 2020 Major League Baseball draft, which will be held June 10-11, will be limited to five rounds.

With the truncated version this year, we thought we’d take a look back at Minnesota Twins drafts since 1998 – when the last two expansion teams were added – to see how the Brewers have fared in each round.

We’ve already looked at Round 1, rounds 2-5 and 6-20. Finally, we’ll look at the players who made the majors from Minnesota’s picks in rounds 21-50. These are truly the long shots.

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The draft, before this year, went to 40 rounds. But it was 50 rounds through 2011 (and beyond 50 through 1997). Starting in 2021, MLB can reduce the draft to as low as 20 rounds.

Instead of ranking each player subjectively, we’ll order them objectively – by baseball-reference.com’s WAR (wins above replacement). Note: For pitchers, we’re using only their pitching WAR. To add in their hitting WAR seems a bit unfair, but we’ll include it in the capsule for reference sake. Also, this list only included players signed by Minnesota.

 

Round 21

n/a

 

Round 22

Trevor Hildenberger 2014
WAR: -1.3

Batting WAR: n/a

After making his major-league debut in 2017 at age 26 appearing in 37 games with 42 innings, Hildenberger forged a role for himself in 2018 and by the end of the year was the team’s closer, notching seven saves. He imploded in 2019, however, and was sent back to the minors. Hildenberger signed with Boston this past offseason. In his three years with the Twins he had a 5.35 ERA, 1.386 WHIP and 8.8 K/9.

 

Round 23

Willie Eyre, P, 1999
WAR: 0.5 (0.0 with Twins)

Batting WAR: 0.0 (0.0 with Twins)

Another late arrival to the majors, Eyre debuted with the Twins in 2006 just shy of his 26th birthday. In his only season with Minnesota, he appeared in 42 games, all in relief, with a 5.31 ERA and 1.635 WHIP over 59 1/3 innings. Eyre also pitched two seasons with Texas and one in Baltimore, recording a 4.95 ERA and 1.515 WHIP.

 

Round 24

Juan Padilla, P, 1998
WAR: 0.9 (DNP with Twins)

Batting WAR: 0.0

Padilla was the player to be named later sent to the New York Yankees in a 2003 trade for Jesse Orosco. He pitched for the Yankees and Reds in 2004 and the Mets in 2005 (where he had a 1.49 ERA in 36 1/3 innings). He finished his career with a 4.06 ERA over 62 innings.

 

Jaylin Davis, OF, 2015
WAR: -0.4 (DNP with Twins)

Davis was part of the trade last year with San Francisco which brought reliever Sam Dyson to Minnesota. He appeared in 17 games with the Giants going 7-for-42 (.167) with one homer and one steal.

 

Round 25

n/a

 

Round 26

Terry Tiffee, 1B, 1999
WAR: -1.1 (-1.2 with Twins)

Tiffee payed in 97 games for the Twins between 2004-06 mainly at third base. His most playing time came in 2005 when he got 159 plate appearances. Overall with Minnesota he hit .226/.276/.350 in 261 plate appearances. Tiffee also got five plate appearances with the Dodgers in 2008.

 

Round 27

Chris Mazza, P, 2011
WAR: 0.0 (DNP with Twins)

Batting WAR: 0.0

Mazza was released by the Twins in July 2015. He bounced around a couple of organizations before being selected by the New York Mets in the 2018 Rule 5 draft. He allowed 10 runs in 16 1/3 innings for the Mets in 2019 and was claimed off waivers by Boston in December.

 

Round 28

n/a

 

Round 29

Nick Blackburn, P, 2001
WAR: 3.2

Batting WAR: -0.1 WAR

Blackburn pitched in six seasons for Minnesota from 2007-12, making 145 appearances with 137 starts. He finished with a 4.85 ERA and 1.472 WHIP. He made 66 starts in 2008-09, going 22-22 with a 4.04 ERA (106 ERA+) and 1.363 WHIP, walking just 1.8 batters per nine innings. Blackburn had elbow surgery in October 2012 and pitched just six minor-league games in 2013 before being released.

 

Round 30

Michael Tonkin, P, 2008
WAR: -0.3

Batting WAR: 0.0

Tonkin made 141 relief appearances in five seasons with the Twins with 65 of those coming in 2016. Overall, he pitched 146 1/3 innings with a 4.43 ERA, 1.428 WHIP and 9.2 K/9. He was released in November 2017 and is now in Arizona’s organization.

 

Round 32

Andrew Vasquez, P, 2015
WAR: -0.1

Batting WAR: n/a

Vasquez has had two short stints with Minnesota. In 2018, he appeared in five innings over nine games, allowing four runs (three earned) while striking out seven. In 2019, he faced three batters, walking two and hitting another (and all three runs scored). Vasquez is still in the Twins’ organization but not on the 40-man roster.

 

Round 33

n/a

 

Round 34

Kevin Frederick, P, 1998
WAR:  -0.6 (-0.3 with Twins)

Batting WAR: n/a

Frederick appeared in eight games in 2002 with the Twins, allowing 13 runs in 11 2/3 innings. He was claimed off waivers by Toronto in 2004 and had a 6.59 ERA in 28 2/3 innings.

 

Round 35

n/a

 

Round 36

Rene Tosoni, OF, 2005
WAR: -0.8

Tosoni played in 60 games for the Twins in 2011, with 40 starts, 37 of those coming in left field. He hit .203/.275/.343 with five home runs, including a grand slam. He was sent back to the minors for all of 2012, signed with Milwaukee in 2013 and spent the next few years playing with independent league teams.

 

Round 37

n/a

 

Round 38

Tommy Watkins, SS, 1998
WAR: 0.4

Watkins was recalled by Minnesota at age 27 in August 2007 and he played in nine games, starting eight at third base. A career .248 hitter in the minors, he went 10-for-28 (.357) with four walks, a steal and no extra-base hits before being sent back down. He never played in the majors again.

 

Round 39

Anthony Slama, P, 2006
WAR: 0.0

Batting WAR: n/a

Slama pitched a combined seven innings for the Twins in 2010-11, allowing four runs. He returned to the minors, pitching in Minnesota’s organization in 2012-13 and briefly for the Dodgers’ Double-A team in 2014.

 

Rounds 40-45

n/a

 

Round 46 (41-50 through 2011)

A.J. Achter, P, 2010
WAR: 0.3 (-0.2 with Twins)
Batting WAR: n/a

Achter pitched to a 5.18 ERA in 24 1/3 innings with Minnesota in 2014-15. He was waived and eventually landed with the Angels, where he had a 3.11 ERA in 37 2/3 innings in 2016. Achter pitched in Detroit’s system and with the independent Somerset Patriots in 2017 and retired in early 2018.

 

Rounds 47

n/a

 

Rounds 48

n/a

 

Round 49

Brock Peterson, 3B, 2002
WAR: -0.4 (DNP with Twins)

Peterson was released by Minnesota after the 2010 season then played independent ball in 2011 and ’12 before being signed to a minor-league contract by St. Louis in August 2012. In 2013, at age 29, he made the majors, getting into 23 games with the Cardinals (2-for-26). He bounced around the minors until 2015.

 

Round 50

n/a