The Twins have agreed to terms with Matt Wallner, their 39th overall pick in the MLB Draft, sources tell MLB Pipeline’s Jim Callis. The Forest Lake, Minn., native agreed to a deal for $1.8 million (slightly below the $1,906,800 slot value for the pick), Callis reports -- though the club has not confirmed the signing.
The Twins originally selected Wallner out of high school in the 32nd round of the 2016 Draft after he was named “Mr. Baseball” in Minnesota. Wallner’s profile has elevated significantly since then; he led Conference USA in home runs in each of his first two collegiate seasons, and he finished his career at Southern Miss with a school-record 58 dingers. Minnesota was originally interested in Wallner’s arm after he finished his senior year of high school with a 7-1 record and a 0.95 ERA on the pitcher’s mound.
"Obviously, my dream has always been to play for the hometown team, and this is just a dream come true," Wallner told MLB.com earlier this month. "Just a lot of hard work and dedication, and couldn't do it without the help of the coaches and my family and everyone who supported me."
In 2019, with the prospect of this Draft looming large, Wallner hit only three homers through the first 26 games of the season, but he closed out the season on a tear, clubbing 20 shots through his final 35 contests.
"Definitely, early in the year, I was probably looking at the Twins at the 39th pick and said, 'I've got to land there,'" Wallner said. "Just pressing a little too much. ... Two months into the year, I really kind of let that go and let my body work and my hands work and just kind of do what I do."
The Twins took Wallner with a pick in Competitive Balance Round A by virtue of being in either one of the 10 smallest markets or 10 smallest revenue pools, which thereby gave them an additional pick at the end of the first round.