Hate to say, "too early to tell," but it's true. Twins appear to be drafting good bats high, then grabbing projectable arms later, hoping to develop hidden gem pitchers with great coaching.
So far, it looks like the first part is working. They now have several very good looking bats rising quickly through the minors. This should be a very good hitting franchise for quite a while.
Developing great arm prospects will of course take more time, since we know the strategy depends on a guy having a projectable body, plus at least one dominant pitch to build around. Early returns on the new pitching coaches have been positive, if you look at the bull pen. Hard not to be impressed by the reclamation of Duffey and May, two guys that a year ago appeared on the cusp of being cut. In fact, the Twins relief staff today is brimming with guys whose stuff has improved considerably. I'm seeing heaters up two or three ticks, with better command. I'm seeing weak pitches being eliminated. All good.
Where is a sign of improved starting pitching? Odorizzi did well last season. Berrios was about the same. Pineda was shockingly good, coming off a long injury absence. Was that in part due to good coaching? Maybe the best sign was young Dobnak, who stepped up and immediately looked like a future stud horse.
To me, the real proof will be fringe guys like Alcala and Romero, particularly the latter. Yes, Fernando Romero perfectly matches the profile of a guy Wes Johnson and his posse should be able to develop. Romero is young, strong, no physical ailments, and he's got what should be dominant stuff, minus consistent command. This is a guy that Johnson should be able to make into a star pitcher, unless there's some confounding factor we can't see. A language barrier? That would be tragic...
The door opened. A woman screamed. Someday, my mom would learn to knock.