Former Twins draft pick returns tonight as a Tigers starter

The 2010 second round draft pick of the Minnesota Twins returns to Target Field tonight… to upstage Ron Gardenhire’s return? NO—That would be impossible.

But, possible—if Detroit Tigers super-utility starter Niko Goodrum can stay hot at the plate over the course of the upcoming three-game series at Minnesota.

The 25-year-old Goodrum is batting .250 (22-for-88) on the year, but .400 (12-for-30) during an eight-game hitting streak that ended on Sunday night in a 3-2 loss at Seattle.

Minnesota selected Niko Goodrum in the second round (71st overall) of the 2010 MLB June Amateur Draft.

Goodrum, whose primary position coming out high school (Fayetteville, GA) in 2010 was shortstop, signed with the club after being drafted for $514,800.

Goodrum batted .265 in 2017 over 127 games with Triple-A Rochester, recording 13 home runs, 25 doubles, 66 RBI, and 11 stolen bases before being promoted to the majors later that same year.

As one of last year’s Twins’ September call-ups, Goodrum made his MLB debut on Sept. 2 against Kansas City, and recorded his first and only hit with the team on Sept. 12 versus San Diego.

He batted .059 in 11 games (1-for-17) for the Twins, finding his way into the lineup from a variety of positions—second baseman, right fielder, designated hitter, and as a pinch runner.

The reality for the Tigers now—and what the Twins likely envisioned—is an essentially positionless player who becomes that much more available and valuable for his team when he starts performing consistently at the plate.

Such consistency could start and stop based on the type of command Twins starter RHP Jose Berrios (4-4, 4.05 ERA) brings to the mound tonight.

Joe Perovich is an on-air announcer and writer at KFAN, and can be reached on Twitter (@JoePerovich) or by email (

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