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Ranking the Top-5 Rule 5 Draft Picks in Twins History


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Shortly after the lockout ends, Major League Baseball expects to conduct this winter's Rule 5 Draft. Here is a look into the best players the Twins have ever taken in the Rule 5 Draft.

Many fans associated Johan Santana as the best Rule 5 Draft pick in Twins history, but the Florida Marlins drafted him and then traded him to Minnesota as part of a pre-arranged deal. So, who are the best Rule 5 Draft picks in Twins history?

5. Gary Wayne, RP
Twins WAR: 2.5

Minnesota selected Wayne from the Expos organization in 1988, and he pitched out of the team's bullpen for four seasons. From 1989-1992, he posted a 3.44 ERA and a 1.31 WHIP as he walked nearly four batters per nine innings. As part of the 1991 club, he only made eight appearances and allowed seven earned runs in 12 1/3 innings. He still gets a World Series ring for his contributions to that club. The Twins traded him to Colorado following the 1992 season, and he'd only pitch two more seasons at the big-league level. 

4. Mark Salas, C
Twins WAR: 2.7

Salas joined the Twins from the Cardinals organization and became the team's starting catcher. He finished eighth in the 1985 AL Rookie of the Year voting after hitting .300/.332/.458 (.791) with 34 extra-base hits in 120 games. During his three seasons in Minnesota, he posted a 103 OPS+, which he couldn't replicate after leaving the Twins. In 1987, he was traded to the Yankees for Joe Niekro, who helped boost the team's second-half rotation on the way to a World Series title. 

3. Ryan Pressly, RP
Twins WAR: 3.6

Pressly is the most current player on this list as he has become one of the AL's best relievers for most of the last decade. The Twins took Pressly from the Red Sox organization in 2012, and he became a core piece of Minnesota's bullpen for six seasons. From 2013-2018 with the Twins, he posted a 3.75 ERA with a 1.30 WHIP and a 112 ERA+. Minnesota traded him to Houston at the 2018 deadline for Gilberto Celestino and Jorge Alcala in a trade that has worked for both teams

2. Doug Corbett, RP
Twins WAR: 8.3

Corbett might be an unknown name to younger fans, but he posted tremendous numbers in a short Twins career. Minnesota drafted Corbett from the Reds organization in 1979. He made an immediate impact in 1980 as he posted a 1.98 ERA in 73 appearances and finished third in the AL Rookie of the Year voting. In 1981, he led the American League in appearances and games finished while also being named to the All-Star team. He was traded to the Angels with Rob Wilfong for Tom Brunansky and Mike Walters the following season. 

1. Shane Mack, OF
Twins WAR: 19.6 

Shane Mack is the clear winner for the best Rule 5 Draft pick in Minnesota Twins history. He was taken in the 1989 Rule 5 Draft from the Padres organization and instantly impacted the team in a big way. In five seasons for the Twins, he hit .309/.375/.479 (.854) with a 130 OPS+. His 1992 season was absurd as he accumulated a 6.5 WAR after posting a 5.0 WAR during the team's World Series run in 1991. He only managed three hits during the 1991 World Series, but he went 6-for-18 with two extra-base hits and three RBI during the ALCS.  

What memories do you have of the players mentioned above? Leave a COMMENT and start the discussion. 

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Doug Corbett brought back a lot of memories - 10 - 14 2.49 era for three years.  The Twins got the best of his 8 years in MLB.See the source image

I understand why people want Johann.  And there is a good case for him since he was traded as a rule V player, he was a transaction, not the normal trade.

Scott Diamond deserves a mention too.  19 - 27 in three years with MN.  In his second year he was 12 - 9 3.54 and we were expecting a lot from the Canadian.  Maybe if Morneau had been here he could have counseled him.   His most memorable Twins moment came after Mauer was hit by a pitch and he retaliated meaning he was thrown out of the game and suspended.

As an old timer I have to add the top Rule V draftees from the 1960s - I hope you don't mind. 

In 1961 - our first year as Twins they selected four players - the one that stands out is Johnny Goryl.  He played 3 years for us and 3 years for the White Sox, then he had his real calling - managing.  He managed 12 years in our minors, going to the championship series five times and winning twice before becoming our manager twice - 1980 he replaces Gene Mauch, 1981 he is replaced by Billy Gardner. See the source image

1962 they drafted Rich Reese. He played 10 seasons in the majors as a first baseman accumulating only 2.2 WAR, 260/312/ 384 with a good glove.  In 1969 he was 29th in MVP votes for the league.  That year Killebrew won it and Jim Perry came in 9th., Carew 10th and Oliva 15th!

See the source image

Jim Holt played for us seven years hitting 272/310/362 and getting a negative WAR - but seven years from a 1967 Rule V is pretty impressive.

 

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1 hour ago, strumdatjag said:

I get it.   The Twins didn’t TAKE Johan Santana, he was taken by the Marlins and traded for the Twins Rule 5 pick and some cash.   But C’Mon.  He was really a Twins Rule 5 guy.   I guess it’s how one defines “Take”.  

I agree, he was still under the same requirements of the rule 5 draft even with the trade.  Had we sent him down he would have been offered back to original team he was taken from.  I do not recall who did take him and trade him but I am sure their fans do not talk about how great of a rule 5 pick they made.  Most likely it was how big of bone head decision not to keep him as the pick.  In NBA draft day trades do not get ratified until after the draft so when a team trades a pick, the team trading away the pick, picks for the receiving team, but everyone knows who is actually making the pick.  

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15 minutes ago, Trov said:

I agree, he was still under the same requirements of the rule 5 draft even with the trade.  Had we sent him down he would have been offered back to original team he was taken from.  I do not recall who did take him and trade him but I am sure their fans do not talk about how great of a rule 5 pick they made.  Most likely it was how big of bone head decision not to keep him as the pick.  In NBA draft day trades do not get ratified until after the draft so when a team trades a pick, the team trading away the pick, picks for the receiving team, but everyone knows who is actually making the pick.  

You are right - it was Miami that took him.   Here is Do-Hyoung Park's description of what happened, "the Marlins were worried that the Twins wanted Camp, too, and they got in touch with Ryan and proposed a swap of picks to ensure they got their man. They exchanged names the day of the draft, and it resulted in the Twins picking Camp at No. 1 and the Marlins selecting Santana at No. 2. The teams then swapped players, with the Marlins also sending $50,000 to the Twins as each club got the prospect it wanted all along."

You might be interested in a Mets retrospective on their trade for Johann - https://metsmerizedonline.com/2020/02/revisiting-the-johan-santana-trade-twelve-years-later.html/  

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1 hour ago, mikelink45 said:

You are right - it was Miami that took him.   Here is Do-Hyoung Park's description of what happened, "the Marlins were worried that the Twins wanted Camp, too, and they got in touch with Ryan and proposed a swap of picks to ensure they got their man. They exchanged names the day of the draft, and it resulted in the Twins picking Camp at No. 1 and the Marlins selecting Santana at No. 2. The teams then swapped players, with the Marlins also sending $50,000 to the Twins as each club got the prospect it wanted all along."

You might be interested in a Mets retrospective on their trade for Johann - https://metsmerizedonline.com/2020/02/revisiting-the-johan-santana-trade-twelve-years-later.html/  

Thanks Mike, that's what I thought. Johan was under the same conditions as any Rule 5 player. So I consider him as a Rule 5 pick and put him on top of the list.

Twins were very good at selecting Rule 5 picks, I used to look forward to them. Now we are losing them, they don't competently evaluate our players, protecting those who we don't need and not protecting those we need and selecting no one who really move the needle.

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4 hours ago, strumdatjag said:

I get it.   The Twins didn’t TAKE Johan Santana, he was taken by the Marlins and traded for the Twins Rule 5 pick and some cash.   But C’Mon.  He was really a Twins Rule 5 guy.   I guess it’s how one defines “Take”.  

agree

 

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Yeah, Doug Corbett was a good player for the Twins, sorry to lose him, but very happy with the return on that trade.

Big Shane Mack fan, too.

Jim Holt...not so much. Making matters worse, one year it seemed like every pack of baseball cards I bought had a Jim Holt in it.

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4 hours ago, mikelink45 said:

You are right - it was Miami that took him.   Here is Do-Hyoung Park's description of what happened, "the Marlins were worried that the Twins wanted Camp, too, and they got in touch with Ryan and proposed a swap of picks to ensure they got their man. They exchanged names the day of the draft, and it resulted in the Twins picking Camp at No. 1 and the Marlins selecting Santana at No. 2. The teams then swapped players, with the Marlins also sending $50,000 to the Twins as each club got the prospect it wanted all along."

You might be interested in a Mets retrospective on their trade for Johann - https://metsmerizedonline.com/2020/02/revisiting-the-johan-santana-trade-twelve-years-later.html/  

Yeah, of course the Mets would do that trade again. They basically gave up Gomez about four years before he was any good and nothing else. Phenomenal trade.

It does point out the risk of a free agent contract, though. One good year and a few memories for $130+ million, signing a guy with no history of injuries. Yikes. Glad it's not my money.

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Good call on Corbett. I followed him as a Twin and he was a real gem! As I recall this was after they let Bill Campbell walk but still came up with Corbett and Tom Johnson. Corbett was probably one of the best Twins relievers ever (just for a short time similar to how I refer to Lyman Bostock as one of the best Twins hitters ever (I’d rate him 5th). That first year for Corbett was a doozie!!!

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8 hours ago, mikelink45 said:

You are right - it was Miami that took him.   Here is Do-Hyoung Park's description of what happened, "the Marlins were worried that the Twins wanted Camp, too, and they got in touch with Ryan and proposed a swap of picks to ensure they got their man. They exchanged names the day of the draft, and it resulted in the Twins picking Camp at No. 1 and the Marlins selecting Santana at No. 2. The teams then swapped players, with the Marlins also sending $50,000 to the Twins as each club got the prospect it wanted all along."

You might be interested in a Mets retrospective on their trade for Johann - https://metsmerizedonline.com/2020/02/revisiting-the-johan-santana-trade-twelve-years-later.html/  

Thank you for this.  During the winter months, this just absolutely hit the spot.

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16 hours ago, big dog said:

Yeah, of course the Mets would do that trade again. They basically gave up Gomez about four years before he was any good and nothing else. Phenomenal trade.

It does point out the risk of a free agent contract, though. One good year and a few memories for $130+ million, signing a guy with no history of injuries. Yikes. Glad it's not my money.

Santana's contract is one of many vets that get long term deal that is very lopsided to the player.  He is not the exception but a common outcome.  Just look at many of the recent long term deals, most of the time 1 or 2 years are good for the player, the rest are either injuries, or poor play.  There are the few that actually play to the value of the contract for most of it.  

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Loved Shane Mack. He was having a terrific season in 1994, another overlooked all-star campaign before the damnable strike. Would have been interesting to see what would have happened if he had never gone to Japan and kept rocking it in MLB in 1995 & 1996. A great run in MN, and a really fun player to watch. Huge fan of Shane Mack, who I think is terribly underrated.

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This is an interesting recap. Quite a few actually did play for the Twins.

 

https://www.mlb.com/news/twins-rule-5-draft-history

 

Plus:

1969 - Hal Haydel

1967 - Bruce Look (besides Jim Holt)

1963 - Bill Fischer (notable losses by the Twins were Rudy May and Reggie Smith)

1962 - Charlie Keller

1961 - Bruce Swango, George Banks, Georges Maranda (besides John Goryl)

1960 - Gerry Arrigo, Gary Dotter

 

 

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Who have the Twins lost in the Rule 5 Draft?

 

Seems the Twins weren't a HIGH PROSPECTS organization for many of the drafts, not losing any players. 

 

*notable players lost in minor league portion of the draft.

 

2020 - Tyler Wells, Akil Baddoo

2017 - Nick Burdi, Luke Bard

2016 - Stu Turner

2015 - Zach Jones

2014 - Sean Gilmartin

2011 - Shooter Hunt*

2009 - Jose Lugo

2006 - Kevin Cameron, LeVale Speigner, Justin Jones*

2004 - Angel Garcia

1998 - Walker Chapman

1997 - Alan Mahaffey

1995 - Kimera Bartee

1992 - Kerry Taylor

1990 - Doug Simons

1984 - Jim Weaver

1974 - Doug Clary*

1972 - Jose Arcia*

1971 - Brant Alyea, Dick Rusteck*

1969 - Mike Sadek, Rich Donnelly*

1968 - Moe Ogier

1967 - Sandy Valdespino, Hank Izquierdo*

1966 - Orlando Martinez

1964 - Pete Magrini*, Fred Scherman*

1963 - Reggie Smith*, Rudy May*, John Donaldson*, Rob Gardner*, Steve Jones*

1961 - Rod Kanehl*

1960 - Jack Baldschun

 

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