Chase Petty was at Target Field on Monday after the first-round draft pick gave up his scholarship offer to Florida to sign with the Twins for a reported $2.5 million bonus.
"It's been surreal," the 18-year-old righthander from New Jersey said. "It still hasn't even hit me yet. But I think signing that contract definitely helped a lot."
Petty was the 26th overall pick in the first round of the draft earlier this month. The slot value for the 26thpick is $2.65 million.
He will travel to Fort Myers, Fla., on Tuesday, where he will begin with Class A Fort Myers. But first, he visited the Twins Cities for the first time.
"I drove around a lot today andgot to see quite a bit," Petty said. "It's gorgeous.I love it."
Petty played for Mainland Regional High in Linwood, N.J., and was the first pitcher taken in the first round by the Twins in six years.
New Jersey's Gatorade Player of the Year, Petty dominated the Cape-Atlantic League, the same league that produced Angels superstar Mike Trout a dozen years ago. Petty struck out 99 hitters in 48⅔ innings during his senior season, posted a 1.48 ERA and even led his team in RBI, playing second base when he wasn't pitching.
"I'm definitely a very headstrong, very competitive pitcher," Petty said."I don't know anybody who has more of a dog mentality than I do that I've ever met.… I don't really see a guy truly beating me in this game."
- Catcher Mitch Garver was back in the starting lineup, his first start behind the plate at Target Field since May 26. Garver went on the IL because of a groin injury in early June. He returned July 19 for a road game against the White Sox but was placed on the paternity list on July 20. The Garvers welcomed a healthy son, Gamble, on Thursday.
- Manager Rocco Baldelli said righthanders Luke Farrell (oblique) and Randy Dobnak (finger) have both started light throwing exercises. Centerfielder Rob Refsnyder (hamstring) is still rehabbing with Class AAA St. Paul.