The worst-kept secret in baseball was officially let out of the bag on Wednesday night, as the Detroit Tigers selected Arizona State phenom Spencer Torkelson with the first overall pick of the 2020 MLB Draft.
And let's just say, he's definitely excited!
After his selection, Tigers GM Al Avila announced that Torkelson will be playing third base for the team, despite his having been a 1st baseman at Arizona State. How did that sit with Torkelson?
“It’s not a shock to me,” he said. “I pride myself as a baseball player, and a baseball player isn’t stuck at one position. You’re not playing in the backyard as a five-year-old locking down first base only. You’re playing all over the place.”
As far as not being drafted right out of high school, Torkelson said that served as some major motivation for him.
“It lit a fire inside me,” Torkelson said. “Come junior year at ASU, I’m going to be a first rounder — I told myself that. You gotta let it motivate you. You can’t let it tear you down. You can be sorry for yourself for a good 5 minutes, and then it’s back to work. If you are going to make it to the Major Leagues, you are going to make it no matter what. That’s what you gotta believe.“
Tigers fans who are excited to see him soon don the Old English D noted that he's a fan of some classic cinema as evidenced by the movie posters behind him at his home setup in Petaluma, California – though ESPN's Karl Ravech sounded like he needed a bit of a tuneup in his movie knowledge:
Karl Ravech has no idea what Rookie of the Year is about. Spencer Torkelson had no idea what to do with this question. pic.twitter.com/nI3eZ0vqox
— Bob Wankel (@BobWankelCB) June 10, 2020
It sounds like Torkelson is happy to be a Tiger, and you can bet we sure are too!
– – Quote via Will Burchfield of 97.1 The Ticket Link – –
– – Quote via Jeff Seidel of The Detroit Free Press Link – –