The Minnesota Twins selected two pitchers in Thursday's Rule 5 Draft, taking right-hander Terry Doyle with the second overall pick in the major league round and right-hander Marty Popham in the Triple-A phase.
Doyle, 26, most recently pitched for the Birmingham Barons, the Double-A affiliate of the Chicago White Sox. He also spent time at High-A Winston Salem in 2011. With the Barons, Doyle was 7-5 with a 3.24 ERA in 15 starts. He struck out 73 batters and walked 22 in 100 innings pitched. The 6-foot-4, 225-pound Doyle was a 37th-round pick by Chicago in the 2008 draft.
Popham, 24, played at three different levels in Cleveland's minor league system in 2011, including High-A Kinston, Double-A Akron and Triple-A Columbus. He appeared in just one game at Triple-A, however, and gave up one run a solo homer in 1 23 innings. He pitched the majority at High-A, making 16 starts and posting a 6-2 record with a 4.19 ERA. The 6-foot-6, 235-pound Popham struck out 106 total batters between the three levels while walking 25 in 112 total innings.
The Twins lost pitcher Shooter Hunt to St. Louis. Hunt, a former first-round pick of Minnesota, was taken by the Cardinals in the Triple-A phase of the Rule 5 draft. He spent four seasons in the Twins' minor league system but never advanced higher than High-A Fort Myers.
Not surprisingly, outfielders Michael Cuddyer and Jason Kubel declined arbitration offers from the Twins. The deadline to accept arbitration was Wednesday at midnight. Both players now become free agents.
Multiple reports have indicated that the Twins continue to make a strong push to re-sign Cuddyer, who was perhaps the most productive hitter for Minnesota last season. If the Twins do bring him back, it's not likely Kubel will return as well.
If either player signs elsewhere, the Twins will receive a compensation draft pick. Cuddyer is a Type A free agent, while Kubel is a Type B free agent. Minnesota would get a first-round pick if Cuddyer signs with another team, and they'd receive a sandwich pick between the first and second rounds if Kubel signs somewhere else.