Gutierrez: A Rookie Full of Surprises

Special For The Puerto Rico Daily Sun

 MIAMI- Carlos Gutierrez was a surprise first round pick—27th overall pick—in the 2008 Major League Baseball Draft by the Minnesota Twins. Before the draft he was converted to a closer by the University of Miami after returning from Tommy John surgery. According to scouts he possesses an amazing sinking fastball but he is a pitcher in the works.
That’s what most baseball fans in Puerto Rico know about the 6’3″ right-handed hurler raised in Miami and surprise, surprise with such little news he will be one of the set-up man for Jose “Cheito” Oquendo squad in the upcoming World Baseball Classic.
“I’m very proud and very happy to represent Puerto Rico. I’m looking forward to join the team”, Gutierrez said at Alex Rodriguez Park in Coral Gables.
As a similar case of veteran third baseman Mike Lowell,  Gutierrez, 22, was raised by his parents Raphael and Katherine Gutierrez in Miami.
In high school he was a basketball and baseball star of the Christopher Columbus High School Explorers but his shining path as a pitcher took the eye of Manager Jim Morris and the University of Miami to sign him for college baseball.
Even though he was redshirted the 2007 due to Tommy John surgery, Gutierrez pointed out that if it have not been for the great job with the surgery that acclaimed Dr. John Uribe performed he would not be at present at all in sports.
His senior year he performed so well as a closer for the University of Miami Hurricanes that it was the Twins who took him in the first round of the 2008 draft. And no dissapointments. Gutierrez went 3-1 with a 2.10 ERA and 19 strikeouts in 25 innings pitched with the Class A Advanced Fort Myers Miracle last season.
“My first season was okay. I got my first taste in the pros and it was a lot of fun”, Gutierrez said. “I still have plenty of room for improvement”.
According to Minnesota Twins scouts, Gutierrez may find himself with the Fort Myers team again to begin the 2009 season. The Twins are working hard with him to develop a second and third pitch. They envision him as a future middle reliever and set up man guy.
And watch out. His younger brother David is a rising pitching star too. David, 20, is a starter for the University of Miami Hurricanes. Has a perfect 7-0 record and a 3.50 ERA in his three-year college career and he does have a good command of three above average pitches. Write his name out because very possible will be a future prospect for Team Puerto Rico for the World Baseball Classic in 2013.
As for Carlos Gutierrez his quest starts on March 7 at Hiram Bithorn Stadium in San Juan. Puerto Rico begins play against Panama.


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