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In ninth round, Twins take local product Murphy

The Twins broke their streak of taking seven straight college pitchers by selecting Bradley University outfielder Max Murphy with the No. 260 overall pick in the ninth round of Friday's First-Year Player Draft.

Murphy, a native of Robbinsdale, Minn., played primarily in center field this season, hitting .314/.414/.598 with 12 homers, 15 doubles, two triples, 10 stolen bases and 42 RBIs in 51 games as a junior.

"Max Murphy is very interesting," Draft expert Jim Callis said. "He's very toolsy for a college player. The problem guys have with him is that he plays beneath the tools a little bit. People don't love the approach and wonder about the bat. But he has the tools to do some things."

The Draft concludes on Saturday, with exclusive coverage of Rounds 11-40 beginning on at 12 p.m. CT.

Murphy, 21, was a solid performer at Bradley, hitting .293/.383/.518 in three years at Bradley, while showing above-average power, especially from his 5-foot-11, 195-pound frame. His 27 homers rank as the sixth most in school history.

There are questions about Murphy's ability to stick in center field, and he has unconventional setup at the plate, but he still makes plenty of hard contact and has quick wrists. Murphy attended Robbinsdale Cooper High School in New Hope, Minn., but he wasn't drafted as a high school senior.

"We like him," Twins scouting director Deron Johnson said. "We had him at a workout on Monday and he did well. He hit a few balls out of the park. He's a strong kid. He's only 5-foot-11 but he's put together pretty good. He runs well and he throws well."

Rhett Bollinger is a reporter for Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, and follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger.
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