1. Gausman- I got really excited about Gausman after watching some videos of him pitch. Loved his delivery, mix, and velocity.
2. Zimmer- Zimmer was my second favorite pitcher and I believed we really needed a pitcher.
3. Correa- We needed and still do need, an exciting SS in our system. I know people are big on Polanco but I need to see another improved year.
4. Zunino- Zunino looked like a beast that would be ready for the majors soon. At the time I thought Common was right in moving Mauer to right (or 3rd).
5. Buxton- Best player available but at a position we didn't need to draft at.
I thought Houston was going Appel being a hometown kid so thought Buxton or Zimmer was the pick. I don't think I will every question the draft again after this, the twins could have folded under pressure and gone with Gausman/Zimmer but Buxton and Correa look like multiple all star type players. At the time I really thought Span/Revere/Hicks would cover the outfield for next decade. Guess that is why you never draft for need early. Now instead of Span, Revere and Hicks outfield with Appel or Gausman/Zimmer you have a Buxton/Hicks and Alex Meyer/Trevor May and Berrios. Buxton MVP type potential with Hunter a world series move. I am believer in big time talent and the Buxton is the biggest talent.
Also why I love Kohl Stewart as a prospect and Buxton is they are high school guys that played multiple sports and still showed top of the first round potential. There is a lot to say in that. You can tell Twins staff see the value in this. Athlete first. They tend to take off after high school as we are seeing. You look at the hype of Bryce Harper (he's going to be great BTW) but Buxton didn't have that and really looking at tools and potential Buxton looks like a better bet for MVP/HOF. Also nice Win Gopher hockey. Sorry multi sport fan and multi sport athlete.
I find it interesting that it was viewed as a weak draft. Lot of guys look promising right now. Buxton, appel, correa, zunnino, gausman, etc.
One of the big talking points here at the time was concern about the competition Buxton was facing. Buxton clearly had the most upside, but the risk factor for a lot of people including myself put him on a fairly even scale with guys like Appel and Guasman. So the fact that the Twins needed pitching was the tiebreaker. I wanted Appel when Houston passed on him. Wasn't surprised when the Twins selected Buxton but was admittedly disappointed.
I wanted pitching as I didn't think Buxton as I though most people's argument at the time for the BPA was simply code for "I don't want a pitcher!"
I wanted Appel, Zimmer, Gausman, though honestly I jumped on the Buxton hype as soon as his name was called.
I wanted nothing to do with Zunino.
I was convinced that Houston would take the local boy, Appel, and I recall really hoping that the Twins would take Correa if that happened. I'd recently read a really well done feature about Correa and his all-baseball-all-the-time life in P.R. and decided that: (1) he was more of a sure thing than Buxton (who had played comparatively little baseball and against inferior competition) and (2) he had a higher ceiling than the remaining pitchers.
When Houston's deal with Correa was announced, I rubbed my hands together in anticipation of getting Appel. Then, almost immediately, there were reports that Appel wanted more than slot from the Twins. Given that he had Boras as his agent, the reports had to be taken seriously. So, I immediately jumped ship on Appel and climbed aboard the S.S. Buxton. Happily, T.R. picked him and I've been enjoying everything about the Buxton experience. I will say, however, if we had Correa in our system because Houston had taken Buxton, there'd still be a lot to be excited about.
I wanted Buxton. Had read numerous articles on him, then the SI article. I was hooked. I thought Appel would go #1 - it didn't even seem (to me) like there was any other way to look at it. Correa was a surprise. So for me, I didn't have anyone outside of Appel and Buxton for the Twins pick. But I was worried about the sign-ability of Appel. I was just hoping for days prior the Twins would get Buxton, and they did.
Luis Giolito and Andrew Heaney were sorta interesting, but still was only hoping for Buxton.
I typically like HS pitchers to college pitchers. For me, college pitchers, you pretty much know what you're going to get. They're more likely to make the pros and be average. They'd have 3-4 more years of development (entire minor league career) and I don't see a whole lot of change coming from them. If the guy has struggled with command another 3+ years in college, why will rookie league and A-ball correct that? I just don't like losing those 3 years to college when I could have had them in my system.
For the 2014 MLB Draft: I'd take Rodon #1 this year....and I'd consider Aaron Nola at #5 for the Twins. Not a fan of Hoffman, he doesn't miss bats, but he sure misses the strike zone. Beede? Maybe.
The others I'd watch closely leading up to the June draft are: Tyler Koleck, Trea Turner, Sean Newcomb, Touki Toussaint, Kyle Schwarber, and Braxton Davidson.
To put that draft in perspective: At that point the Twins had Span as their established CF, Ben Revere a rookie in the majors and Arcia, Rosario, Hicks and Benson as their number 2-5 prospects (in various orders in various lists) behind Sano. Their real SP prospects were Gibson and Gibson alone. The last thing I wanted was another OF. I wanted pitching. On the other hand, the Twins got rid of 3 of those 6 OFs, trading 2 for SP and everything worked alright...
Thrylos, that is a huge assumption I think when you say everything worked alright....We need much more of an explanation than that I believe. Jury is still out on some of these moves as being decent or not.
Fast forward a season, and with the trades (and the 2013 draft) now the Twins have a better balance of top prospect (or young MLB) talent between OF and SP. In that respect (which was the point I wanted to make) it worked alright...
I figured we would get either Corriea or Buxton. I figured Appel would go 1rst to local team. I figured either one was fine for me. I did want Corriea though because he was a SS. I don't worry too much about pitching. I expected the Twins would deal with it soon enough and they did with their next pick in Berrios, trade for Meyer, May and Subulban and Gilmartin.., International league Thorpe, next draft Stewart.... and then major league free agent signings. we actually almost have an embarrassment of pitching riches. Our bullpen is overloaded with pitchers. You can never have too much pitching though as i'm sure we will continue to collect pitching prospects.
All said I was happy with the Buxton pick. I just didn't want to see the Twins draft a player that was rated 9th best across the board by scouts and writers and such to save money
It was hard, at the time, to look at all the OFs in the pipeline and the almost total lack of top-half of the rotation SPs and not be inclined to want to see some pitching help drafted.
Just for kicks, I went back and looked at a couple of the pre-draft threads and they were entertaining anyway.
I'm a "Best Player Available" proponent, but yes I think most of us wished the BPA in 2012 would have been a SP. I think a lot of people forget that Appel's stock dropped because he wasn't having a terrific junior season, yet Boras was making noise that he was going to demand over-slot money. It wouldn't have made any sense for the Twins to bite on that combination.
If nothing else, the 2012 draft and the trades that came later serve as a reminder that the draft, in and of itself, is not the only way to fill your organization's needs. The combination of the BPA draft of Buxton and the subsequent trades of OFs for Meyer and May brought balance to the Twins top prospect list. I don't think many would prefer to have Span, Revere and any of the pitchers available in the 2012 draft now over Meyer, May and Buxton.
I was on the Buxton bandwagon. Goldstein at BP had a Q/A chat where someone asked him what the Twins should do and he responded "Hope the Astros pass on Buxton." The SI article was nice - I actually posted a link to it that led to some really intense discussions here. But I just thought that he was too good of a talent to pass on for (in my view) some questionable pitchers.