Minnesota Twins Calling Up Top Pitching Prospect

David Festa, Minnesota Twins
Steven Bisig-USA TODAY SportsCredit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

The Minnesota Twins placed starting pitcher Chris Paddack on the injured list on Wednesday, after he all but begged for a rest during a sit down with media after his most recent start.

Initially, the Twins called up right-handed pitcher Ronny Henriquez, a 24-year-old relief pitcher, who is having a very solid season at triple a St. Paul, but a guy who is not in the organization’s top-30 prospects, according to MLB.com, and obviously not a starter.

Minnesota Twins calling up David Festa

But rumors started swirling on Tuesday night that MN Twins decision makers had another move in their back pocket, that they were planning to bring up top pitching prospect, David Festa, a 6’6″ right handed starter who has struck out more hitters than any other pitcher in the minors.

Late Wednesday morning, Festa’s call up was confirmed by Bobby Nightengale (Star Tribune). He will make his major league debut on Thursday as Minnesota Twins starter vs the Arizona Diamondbacks.

David Festa is the Twins’ top pitching prospect and No. 5 overall prospect in their organization. MLB.com has him ranked as the No. 99 overall prospect in baseball, today. In 2024, Festa has thrown 59.2 innings for the Triple A St. Paul Saints (14 games), posting a 3.77 ERA and 1.29 WHIP. He has struckout 87 batters and surrendered 24 walks.

What should MN Twins fans expect from David Festa?

Festa (also 24 y/o) is a former 2021 13th round draft pick (No. 399 overall) by the Twins. He’s from Verona, NJ and played his college ball at Seton Hall. This kid has everything it takes, from a stuff standpoint, to be a top-rotation starter in the MLB, including a 95-97 MPH fastball, to go with a high spin rate slider (87 MPH) and a mid-80s changeup that plays as a good counter to his strikeout slider.

Related: Chris Paddack is Pretty Much Begging the Twins for a Break

At his age, Festa isn’t coming up to show he has future promise, he’s coming up to try and prove he deserves a spot in the rotation. Unfortunately for David, he has options and Chris Paddack doesn’t.

Unless something else happens within the Twins rotation, I’d expect Festa to go back to St. Paul when Paddack’s rest is over, no matter how well he throws it. So… if that happens, don’t say I didn’t warn you. But first, let’s hope we are dealing with that “very good to have” problem and then criticize from there.

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