As part of MLBPipeline.com's visit to all 30 Spring Training facilities, we'll be sitting down with prospects and getting to know them a little better. At Twins camp, it was No. 26 prospect Lachlan Wells.FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Lachlan Wells signed out of Australia in November 2014 for $300,000. He made his
As part of MLBPipeline.com's visit to all 30 Spring Training facilities, we'll be sitting down with prospects and getting to know them a little better. At Twins camp, it was No. 26 prospect Lachlan Wells.
FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Lachlan Wells signed out of Australia in November 2014 for $300,000. He made his full-season debut in 2016 and pitched very well for Cedar Rapids, putting him more firmly on the prospect map. Wells recently returned to Fort Myers after pitching for Australia in the World Baseball Classic.
MLBPipeline.com: You just played for Team Australia in the WBC. What were your takeaways from that experience and how do you think it's going to help you moving forward, both the strong outing against Japan and giving up the grand slam against Cuba?
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Wells: Pitching in Japan, against Japan, in front of a crowd of 45,000 people, that's just going to help me immensely. Obviously, you're not going to get those crowds down here in Fort Myers, or in Cedar Rapids, or in Chattanooga. Just being able to pitch in front of that many people and knowing that it didn't bother me and now, I'll be pitching in front of a couple of thousand people and they're all heckling me and I can hear them, it's not going to bother me. I can take that away as a positive. It was unreal.
Obviously, you don't want to give up a grand slam, or any home run, but I'm going to take that as experience. I just turned 20, pitching on the world stage, pitching against the best hitters. It was disappointing, but as soon as I got on the plane to come back over here, I knew it was a fresh start at Spring Training. It's not even in the back of my mind anymore. I'm here and ready to compete and hopefully make a club out of Spring Training.
MLBPipeline.com: Speaking of that, last year you had to hang back in extended spring training before heading out to Cedar Rapids as the Twins wanted to monitor your workload. How excited are you to start with a club in April?
Wells: I can't wait, really. It's going to be a lot of fun playing with a full-season team, being with the same group of guys from start to finish. Hopefully, I'll go out there and do my thing, have a successful season and compete as best I can.
MLBPipeline.com: The Twins have had a strong connection with Australia over the years. How did that influence your decision to sign with them? How comfortable are you here knowing that a good amount of players over the years, including some who are going through it with you now, have come from there into this organization?
Wells: When I signed, it was a pretty easy decision, knowing that a lot of Australians have come through the Minnesota Twins organization. They said it's a very good and successful organization, so I said, "Sure, I'll go and play with the Twins." The guys who are with me now, Todd Van Steensel, Aaron Whitefield and Lewis Thorpe, they're a good group of guys. We're all here trying to make it to the big leagues together. It helps when one of us has success, we're all here praising each other, doing it as a group and doing it for Australia. I spoke to not only Hughesie (Luke Hughes), but also James Beresford about their time over here, how they got through the system. They told me it's a long grind and it's going to be tough, but you have to hang in there and stick it out.
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MLBPipeline.com: Your official bio still lists you at 5-foot-8, 160 pounds. Do you prefer to keep it that way, so people can keep underrating what you bring to the table?
Wells: It's a bit annoying, to be honest. I'd like to be known by my 6-foot 185 pounds, if I could. No, that doesn't really bother me if people see that and underestimate me. I just get out there, get on the mound and show them what I can do. We'll see who's underestimated at the end of the game.
MLBPipeline.com: You can't escape an interview without a question about your twin brother Alex, who pitches in the Orioles system. Did you guys do the typical twins prank thing growing up, switching places to confuse people? Do you guys talk baseball much now, or about facing each other one day?
Wells: We used to do it all the time. We used to trick our grandparents. We tricked our teachers going through school. We would go back and forth with it for a bit of fun. We don't normally talk baseball together that much. It's usually more of a "Hey, how are you doing?" kind of conversation. We'll talk about how we pitch and go over how we did. But most of the time, we try not to talk about baseball and stick to things off the field and how he's feeling. It's definitely the dream to face off against each other at the big league level. We want to see who can outdo the other. One day, that is the dream.
Jonathan Mayo is a reporter for MLBPipeline.com. Follow him on Twitter @JonathanMayo and Facebook, and listen to him on the weekly Pipeline Podcast.