Pitcher to sign with Minnesota Twins
By Jason Arndt
Waterford Union High School graduate Dylan Questad had a decision to make on Monday when the Minnesota Twins selected him in the fifth round of the Major League Baseball draft.
Questad, who committed to play for Division 1 University of Arkansas as part of the one the school’s best recruiting classes in history, opted to follow his big-league dreams by signing with the Twins in the near future and reporting to Fort Myers, Florida, to begin his professional career.
“Once the draft started, it was kind of like a waiting game,” said Questad, who watched all televised draft coverage until he received the call. “I was just so happy when I heard my name being called.”
Questad, named the state’s 2023 Gatorade Player of the Year, entered the draft ranked among the top 50 high school players in the nation by Perfect Game.
In Questad’s senior season, he registered 89 total strikeouts and 14 walks through 43-2/3 innings with a meager 0.48 ERA to help the Wolverines finish 21-5 overall and claim a share of the Southern Lakes Conference title alongside Union Grove.
He did not allow an earned run until a loss to Union Grove in the Division 1 sectional semifinal in June.
Questad said his advisor, Jeff Rosenthal, projected him as a third- to fifth-round selection.
After 149 selections had passed, the Twins finally selected Questad with their fifth round pick and 150th overall on Monday.
“I was kind of getting nervous because I was waiting for my phone to finally ring and then it did,” said Questad, who received the call while he was in his living room with his parents and older sister.
“They were all just super happy,” Questad said of his family’s reaction.
As for the decision to forego Arkansas, Questad said it simply boiled down to a dream, which he has had long before he enrolled at Waterford.
According to the Major League Baseball website, which ranked Questad among the top 200 players in the nation, the Waterford right-hander leans heavily on his fastball with an average speed between 92-94 mph, peaking at 97.
He also presents a strong curveball, slider and exhibits a nasty changeup, according to the Questad’s scouting report.
Questad, also an outfielder, drew the eyes of Major League Baseball scouts, who often headed to Waterford to see him pitch during his senior season.
Questad said the Twins were one of the teams looking at him as a potential draft pick.
While the Twins selected him, Questad said he would have been pleased regardless of the team, noting playing professionally is especially rare.
“There were some teams that liked me more than others, but I think I would have been okay going to anyone because being able to play professional baseball is being able to play professional baseball,” Questad said. “(There are) probably less than .1% of baseball players who get to play professionally, so I was just happy with anything.”
Meanwhile, Questad plans on heading to Fort Myers, where the Twins Class A Florida State League team the Fort Myers Mighty Mussels plays.
Questad acknowledged that he needs to earn several promotions before reaching Target Field, home of the Minnesota Twins, for his Major League Baseball dreams to come true.
But, considering Minnesota is only hours away, Questad sees it as motivation.
“Hopefully, if I make it someday, my parents will be able to come to almost every game,” he said. “I am really happy to represent Waterford in a positive way.”
Matt Read, in his second season as coach for the Waterford baseball team, said the Twins will receive a well-rounded player who exhibits a friendly demeanor off the diamond.
“I couldn’t be more excited for Dylan. He is a great player and a great person with a great, supportive family,” Read said. “The Twins organization is getting a relentless competitor and a relentless, goal-oriented worker. It’s going to be great to watch him progress in pro ball and hopefully he will be able to accomplish his ultimate goal.”
Questad, meanwhile, said he will always remember his senior season with Waterford as he opens a new chapter in his baseball career.
“I think we had a really special group of guys here and I am really going to miss them a lot,” Questad said.
According to the MLB website, Questad became the first Wisconsin high school pitcher taken in the first five rounds since 2006, when the Seattle Mariners selected Tony Butler from Oak Creek High School.
Questad said it is a privilege being selected in the first five rounds, considering he comes from a small town such as Waterford, but acknowledged the fun hasn’t even begun.
“It is more special because I am from a small town, but I would say the most fun part has not even happened yet, and that is being able to play baseball everyday for a big-league organization,” Questad said.