Pitcher Trevor May is headed back to the Minnesota Twins' bullpen. The news was announced Wednesday afternoon by Twins GM Terry Ryan.
May began 2015 as a starter, but he was moved to the bullpen after Ervin Santana returned from his 80-game drug suspension. At that time, the move was considered temporary, but May thrived in the role of late inning specialist with the Twins last season.
May began spring training as a candidate for a spot in the rotation. But the competition for just one spot is intense and with a bullpen that's in need of late inning help, May's move to the bullpen just made too much sense.
"I don't know if he's pleased, but he also took it in the right manner," Ryan told reporters. "Whenever you do something like that, you take it with respect from the manager and the pitching coach."
Just how good was May in the bullpen?
The most notable difference was in the velocity of his fastball. Since he no longer had to pace himself, May's fastball last season occasionally topped out near 98 mph.
When that velocity combined with his mix of four pitches it resulted in a lot of strikeouts.
ESPN's Derek Wetmore notes May struck out 71 batters in 80 innings as a starter, but as a reliever he fanned 39 in 34 innings.