It’s logical that many Minnesota Twins fans have kept their eyes on newly-acquired pitching prospect Alex Meyer — the club traded Denard Span, their center fielder and leadoff hitter, for him.
So his first appearance, which came Monday was highly anticipated. The 6-foot-9 righty pitched two hitless innings against the St. Louis Cardinals as the Twins the exhibition game 7-0.
Meyer, who only has one year of experience, is expected to start the year in Double-A, but it’s hard to believe he’ll stay there long after the Twins got their first look at his electric stuff. The lanky 23 year old has a fastball that can touch 97 mph, a hard slider and a decent change up. He definitely needs some more seasoning in the minors, but he has the raw stuff to be a frontline starter in the big leagues some day.
There was concern about Meyer’s control coming out of the University of Kentucky. In 211 innings pitched at the university, he walked 127 hitters.
Big guys like Meyer have a reputation of not being able to find the strike zone, but with some professional guidance, the hard throwing righty was able to refine his control during his first year in the minors. In one year of Single-A ball, Meyer walked only 45 hitters in 129 innings and boasted a 3.09 K/BB ratio. Meyer’s control will be a key thing to monitor as he makes his way through the minor league system.
Although Meyer walked two hitters on Monday, there seems to be plenty to look forward to regarding this young prospect. It’s unlikely Twins fans will see him toeing the rubber at Target Field this season but it will be worth tracking his progress at the Double-A level.
If he continues to polish his stuff and improve his control, it’s very likely he’ll be in a Twins uniform come Opening Day 2014.