Megill and all 6-foot-8-inches, 250 pounds of him made his major league debut for the Chicago Cubs this past summer, where he appeared in 28 games out of the bullpen. He owns a four-pitch mix, but primarily relies on his four-seam fastball, which can touch 100 mph, and curveball.
The fastball has the raw attributes to be an above average pitch, ranking in the 88th percentile in spin rate and possessing good carry; however, big league opponents mashed it for five home runs and three doubles in 71 plate appearances. (It should be noted, though, that Megill likely suffered from a small sample size and a touch of bad luck. The fireballer allowed seven home runs in 23 ⅔ innings, five of which came at Wrigley Field. According to Baseball Savant, had he pitched the majority of his innings at Target Field, he would have only surrendered two. His 24.1% HR/FB ratio at the MLB level was the second largest of his career by far, trailing only the 26.7% rate he posted in 20 innings at Low-A in 2015.)
Based on previous evidence provided from their approach with other pitchers, it would not be surprising to see the Twins’ pitching staff adjust Megill’s pitch mix by upping the usage of his slider and cutting down on his fastball and curve. (Of note: The pitching staff is allowed to communicate and work with Megill directly as minor league players are not covered by the now-expired CBA. This would not have been the case had they not non-tendered him and kept him on the 40-man roster.)
Much like the signing of fellow minor league bullpen arm Jake Faria, the acquisition of Megill is representative of the front office’s approach to filling out their bullpen. Megill has one pitch that could be elite (the slider) and some statistical evidence suggesting that he’s better than what his performance to date suggests. However, what potentially separates Megill from Faria is his high velocity fastball in combination with a positive track record in the minor leagues. (Megill consistently posted K-BB% rates above 22% while in the San Diego Padres and Cubs’ systems.)
Megill is unlikely to be the savior of the Twins’ bullpen woes, but he is an intriguing arm that is more than worth a flier, particularly on a minor league deal.