Twins draft high school pitcher from Houston with the fourth overall pick in the draft

Kohl Stewart, who has a baseball and football scholarship to Texas A&M, was the first high school player drafted.

hide

Prep baseball star Kohl Stewart, seen here at the Perfect Game All-American Classic, Petco Park, San Diego, California.

Photo: Damen L. Jackson, Dml - Associated Press

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

 

Kohl Stewart estimated that 75 to 100 friends and family members were packed into his family’s home in Tomball, Texas, on Thursday night to see where he would be selected in the Major League Baseball draft.

Thank heavens for the smartphone age.

“The weather got real bad here and the satellite went out,” Stewart said in a teleconference. “Some people called the draft up on their phones, and when we heard my name, we all cheered.”

 

Stewart, a righthanded pitcher who also was a star quarterback at St. Pius X High School in Houston, had a good hunch where he was going. The Twins have been to all his games over the past two years, so he had a strong feeling that they would select him with the fourth overall pick.

The confirmation came around 6:20 p.m. The Twins believe he has the tools to become a front-line starter.

“I definitely believed that this is where I was headed,” he said.

The Twins also went for pitching with their second-round pick, selecting LSU righthander Ryan Eades.

 

Stanford righthander Mark Appel went with the first overall pick to his hometown team, the Houston Astros. The Chicago Cubs then selected University of San Diego third baseman Kris Bryant, and the Colorado Rockies took University of Oklahoma righthander Jonathan Gray, making the Twins’ selection a simple one.

“He was the best prospect on the board,” Twins scouting director Deron Johnson said. “He just happened to be a high school righthander.”

Stewart, 18, made eight starts for St. Pius X this season, going 5-1 with a 0.18 ERA. In 40 innings, he struck out 59 and walked 16. In 2012, he was 8-0 with 72 strikeouts in 54 innings.

“I think his ceiling is unlimited,” Johnson said. “I think he’s got the makeup and physical attributes to be a front-line starter.

“I’m not going to say he’s a No. 1 starter. I don’t think that anyone can predict that, but I do think that — not to put any undue pressure on the kid — but he has the ability, the athleticism to be just as good as the guys who were picked ahead of him.”

There were reports earlier on Thursday that talks had bogged down, but the Twins made the selection confident that they can agree on a signing bonus. Major League Baseball’s assigned value to the fourth overall pick is $4,544,400. Stewart can be signed for above or below that number. The Twins have a bonus pool of $8,264,400 to sign their picks or risk paying a penalty.

Stewart, listed at 6 feet 3 inches and 208 pounds, has a fastball that’s been clocked at 92-94 miles per hour, and he’s thrown his slider as hard as 89 mph. He just started throwing a curveball last winter but has had success with it. And he has a good changeup.

What’s intriguing about him is how much better he can get. He has a scholarship to play baseball and football at Texas A&M, where another QB, Johnny Manziel, is king. Being in a football-crazed state, Stewart spent plenty of time honing his football skills, and he feels that made his arm strong for baseball.

Now he will be immersed in baseball, and the Twins are excited about his potential.

“I look forward to being able to sit down and focus on baseball,” he said. “I look forward to being able to focus on one thing.”

But first, Stewart has to call Aggies football coach Kevin Sumlin and tell him he’s not coming.

“I don’t want to say anything and pull anybody in the wrong way,” Stewart said, “but I look forward to being a Minnesota Twin.’’

Eades is 8-1 with a 2.81 ERA this season for LSU. His fastball ranges from 90-95 mph, and he also has a hard breaking ball.

Baseball America had him listed as the 37th-best prospect in the draft.





 

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions
Final123456789RHE
Minnesota000000000040
Detroit «00100002X340
@Ballpark Replay
Preview | Matchup | Lineup | Log | Wrap | Box
W:D.Price(15-12) L:K.Gibson(13-12) S:J.Nathan (35)
HR: MIN- None DET- I.Kinsler (17)

ADVERTISEMENT

San Francisco - WP: M. Bumgarner 7 FINAL
Kansas City - LP: J. Shields 1
San Diego 10/23/14 7:25 PM
Denver
Detroit 10/26/14 8:30 AM
Atlanta
Buffalo 10/26/14 12:00 PM
NY Jets
St. Louis 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
Houston 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Tennessee
Minnesota 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Seattle 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Carolina
Baltimore 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Cincinnati
Miami 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville
Chicago 10/26/14 12:00 PM
New England
Philadelphia 10/26/14 3:05 PM
Arizona
Oakland 10/26/14 3:25 PM
Cleveland
Indianapolis 10/26/14 3:25 PM
Pittsburgh
Green Bay 10/26/14 7:30 PM
New Orleans
Washington 10/27/14 7:30 PM
Dallas
Houston 85 FINAL
Miami 90
Indiana 89 FINAL
Minnesota 107
Utah 105 FINAL
Oklahoma City 91
Portland 93 FINAL
Denver 75
Phoenix 114 FINAL
LA Lakers 108
LA Clippers 107 FINAL
Golden State 125
San Jose 3 FINAL
Boston 5
NY Rangers 4 FINAL(OT)
New Jersey 3
Toronto 5 FINAL
NY Islanders 2
Detroit 1 FINAL(OT)
Montreal 2
Arizona 3 FINAL(SO)
Nashville 4
Carolina 1 FINAL
Winnipeg 3
Philadelphia 0 FINAL
Chicago 4
Vancouver 3 FINAL
Dallas 6
Florida 4 FINAL(OT)
Colorado 3
Tampa Bay 2 FINAL(OT)
Calgary 1
Arkansas State 40 FINAL
Louisiana 55
Connecticut 10/23/14 6:00 PM
(18) East Carolina
Miami-Florida 10/23/14 7:00 PM
Virginia Tech
So Florida 10/24/14 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Troy 10/24/14 6:30 PM
South Alabama
BYU 10/24/14 8:00 PM
Boise State
(6) Oregon 10/24/14 9:00 PM
California
North Texas 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Rice
UAB 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Arkansas
Rutgers 10/25/14 11:00 AM
(16) Nebraska
Maryland 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Wisconsin
Texas 10/25/14 11:00 AM
(11) Kansas State
Minnesota 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Illinois
Memphis 10/25/14 11:00 AM
SMU
North Carolina 10/25/14 11:30 AM
Virginia
San Jose St 10/25/14 12:00 PM
Navy
Northern Ill 10/25/14 12:00 PM
Eastern Mich
(25) UCLA 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Colorado
Akron 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Ball State
Massachusetts 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Toledo
Ohio U 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Western Mich
Ga Southern 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Georgia State
Kent State 10/25/14 1:30 PM
Miami-Ohio
Oregon State 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Stanford
Fla Atlantic 10/25/14 2:30 PM
(23) Marshall
Louisiana Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Southern Miss
(1) Miss State 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Kentucky
Georgia Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Pittsburgh
(22) West Virginia 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Oklahoma State
Texas Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
(10) TCU
Michigan 10/25/14 2:30 PM
(8) Michigan State
Boston College 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Wake Forest
Central Mich 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Buffalo
Vanderbilt 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Missouri
Old Dominion 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Western Ky
UNLV 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Utah State
Temple 10/25/14 4:00 PM
UCF
(15) Arizona 10/25/14 5:00 PM
Washington St
Texas-El Paso 10/25/14 6:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Wyoming 10/25/14 6:00 PM
Colorado State
Syracuse 10/25/14 6:00 PM
(21) Clemson
Texas State 10/25/14 6:00 PM
ULM
(3) Ole Miss 10/25/14 6:15 PM
(24) LSU
(4) Alabama 10/25/14 6:30 PM
Tennessee
So Carolina 10/25/14 6:30 PM
(5) Auburn
(13) Ohio State 10/25/14 7:00 PM
Penn State
(20) USC 10/25/14 9:00 PM
(19) Utah
(14) Arizona State 10/25/14 9:45 PM
Washington
Nevada 10/25/14 10:59 PM
Hawaii
Montreal 10/24/14 5:30 PM
Ottawa
Saskatchewan 10/24/14 8:30 PM
Calgary
Hamilton 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Toronto
Brt Columbia 10/25/14 6:00 PM
Winnipeg
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Are you happy to see the Royals in the World Series?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close