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Waldrop is patient about rise

Pleased with his late-season work as a starting pitcher for Class A Beloit, Wis., in the Minnesota Twins’ farm system, Kyle Waldrop is learning that patience is a virtue.

“The Twins organization has so much depth in their pitching that everybody gets bogged down at certain levels,” said Waldrop, former Farragut High School All-American and first-round Major League draft choice. “There’s some disappointment there, but that’s the Twins’ philosophy at the Major League Level, pitching and defense .... so there’s a lot of good pitchers that are going to come into the organization. That’s more motivation for me to work harder and be better than those guys.”

Labeling himself a “fast-ball, change-up guy” who is happy with his newest pitch, a slider, the 6-foot-4, 190-pound 20-year-old said he hopes to be in the Florida State League (advanced Class A) in Fort Myers after spring training.

As for 2005, “The last month of the season I finished pretty strong, I had, I think, about five good starts in a row,” Waldrop said.

Ending his season with a 4.98 earned run average in 27 starts (151.2 innings), with 108 strikeouts and 23 walks, Waldrop worked his first full season, seven months, as a professional with a consistent 90 mph fastball he said topped out at 93.

Waldrop said he’s improved greatly at “picking up hitters’ weaknesses more and attack those weaknesses and basically put them away when I’m ahead in counts.”

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