The Twins have released 2012 second-round pick Mason Melotakis. The Triple-A Rochester Red Wings, the affiliate with which Melotakis had been pitching, made the announcement (h/t LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune, on Twitter).
Soon to turn 27 years of age, Melotakis first reached the upper minors back in 2014. He missed all of 2015 with Tommy John surgery but was added to the 40-man roster thereafter and returned to post strong results. The southpaw followed up on a strong effort at Double-A in 2016 with 11 innings in the Arizona Fall League, over which he allowed just two earned runs while compiling 11 strikeouts against a single walk.
Melotakis was seemingly off to a solid start to the 2017 season, posting a 2.28 ERA while generating plenty of grounders to go with 10.4 K/9, 2.9 BB/9, when he was designated and eventually outrighted. He ended that year with a 3.22 ERA and has carried a 3.07 ERA with 14 strikeouts against five walks in 14 2/3 Triple-A innings in 2018.
Evidently, despite the useful numbers, Melotakis has not convinced the current Twins front office that he’s capable of holding down a MLB bullpen spot. Otherwise, he’d surely have been kept, as he wasn’t occupying a 40-man spot and the team hasn’t exactly received top-line results thus far from southpaw relievers Zach Duke and Taylor Rogers. Melotakis was long credited with a big fastball from the left side, but perhaps his arsenal has not been as impressive of late to the Minnesota brass. Other organizations will now have their own shot at adding him.