Starting pitcher Kyle Gibson, one of the top prospects in the Minnesota Twins organization, will make his Major League Baseball debut when he takes the mound on Saturday against the Kansas City Royals.
Minnesota selected the 25-year-old in the first round (22nd overall) in the 2009 MLB Draft. He will take Pedro Hernandez’s place on the 25-man roster after the left-handed starting pitcher was optioned to Triple-A Rochester.
Hernandez was recalled to pitch in Sunday’s series finale against the Cleveland Indians. Even though he allowed just two earned runs on three hits in five innings and received the win (his third of the season), the Twins decided his wildness was a bit too much for them. Not to mention, the organization would like to see what Gibson could do with an opportunity in the big leagues.
Gibson is 7-5 with a 3.01 earned run average and 79 strikeouts in 92 2/3 innings this season with Triple-A Rochester. It has been by far his most productive season, not counting his rookie year in which he pitched in three different leagues, including three starts in Triple-A. Overall, the right-hander has posted a successful Minor League career. His 21-21 record is not ideal, but his 3.54 ERA in 368 1/3 career innings is certainly impressive.
Best case scenario for Gibson is that he pitches well and earns the trust of his manager to make another start. Worst case is that he does not do as well as expected and gets sent back down to the minors where he will continue to work on his game.