Twins pitcher Louie Varland ready for start of spring training this week
North St. Paul native and Twins pitcher Louie Varland has enjoyed success as a starter and reliever in his first two major league seasons. The latter was a new role last September. Over 12 relief innings, he had 17 strikeouts and allowed just two runs, equaling an earned run average of 1.50.
But the plan right now is for Varland to be a starter, a role he wants. Between 2022 and 2023, his first 12 major league starts went well. He then struggled in his last three starts before being sent down to AAA-St. Paul.
Our Darren ‘Doogie’ Wolfson caught up recently with Varland at workout at MASH Baseball in Savage before he took off for spring training. Twins pitchers and catchers hit the field in Fort Myers later this week.
***Click the video box above to watch our conversation with Varland and to see him in action***
Between five MLB starts in 2022, then 10 early in 2023, Varland has worked 82 innings with a 4.83 ERA.
He was the Twins’ minor league pitcher of the year in 2021 and 2022 after being a 15th round draft choice in 2019 out of Concordia-St. Paul.
Varland still has options on his contract, so it’s possible he’ll open the 2024 season a starter for the Saints. But, much like Bailey Ober last year, it’s inevitable that he’ll be helping the Twins this year over the grind of a 162-game schedule.