Glen Perkins

What does everyone think of Glen Perkins?  He's out right now with a sore muscle in his arm, but due to pitch before Sunday's deadline.  He's one of the more likely Twins prospects to be traded if the Twins make a deal.

Perkins came out of the University of Minnesota and he's a local kid...a family friend of one of my friends actually.  He was drafted 22nd overall in the 2004 class, one pick before Phillip Hughes went to the Yankees.

Out of college, he was a finesse lefty posting a 113:21 K:BB ratio in his age 21 college season.  His fastball was clocked in the low 90s, and his frame (5'11" 190 lbs) didn't show much projection left.

But somehow he added another 2-3 miles onto his fastball.  Perkins now works 93 and can hit 96 on occasion.  His other pitches include a fast and a slow curve and one of the best changeups in the organization, according to  Scout reports that Perkins is "nearly untouchable" when his command is on, and that he has "one of the best" lefthanded arsenals in AA. The article goes on to rave about his poise, intelligence, bulldog mentality, mound presence, and says that he's got the makeup of a front-line starter.

On the year, Perkins is an ugly 2-10 in 17 starts for AA New Britain, but the peripherals are encouraging...4.05 ERA, 96:32 K:BB in 91 innings with 86 hits allowed.  He is a moderate flyball pitcher.  Perkins has a rather high .316 BABIP and a high HR/FB ratio, both of which contribute to his high ERA.  He's also had a few very bad starts.

Perkins is a very interesting prospect to me because he's taking the opposite development track to the normal "college finesse lefty."  His strikeout rate has climbed as he's moved up the development ladder and his stuff has improved since leaving college.

Right now, I think Perkins comps favorably to another diminutive, good-stuff lefty, Eric Bedard...and despite Bedard's JuCo background, a comparison of their minor league careers shows interesting parallels.  They both hit A+ ball at age 22 and dominated in K/9 and BB/9, but both ratios regressed upon first promotion to AA.

The similarities end because of Bedard's promotion to the majors halfway through his age 23 season at AA.

Despite Perkins's ugly record and less-than-stellar ERA, I remain optimistic because he's showing he can strike guys out at the AA level...something that many finesse lefties cannot.  Allowed to properly develop, I think Perkins could become an excellent #2 starter in the majors, although solid #3 numbers with high breakout potential is the most likely career path...kind of like Eric Bedard.

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