Part 6: Seth's Updated Top 50 Twins Prospects (11-15)
Image courtesy of Seth Stohs, Twins Daily (photo of Lewin Diaz)As you read about these first Twins prospects, be sure to start thinking about where they might rank for you. Who are the players that will be in my Top 10 and how would they rank on your own personal Top 15 prospect list? This group contains a three 40-man roster guys, and two more that have fairly high ceilings as well.
Be sure to ask questions and leave comments in the forum below.
#15 RHP Zack Littell
The Twins acquired Littell (and Dietrich Enns) from the Yankees in exchange for Jaime Garcia in late July. He went 9-1 in High A with the Yankees before going 5-0 at AA with Trenton. After the trade to the Twins, he went 5-0 in Chattanooga, and he won a playoff game too. While wins and losses aren’t the be-all, end-all, going 20-1 means that you’re doing something right. Littlell is 6-4 and 220 pounds. He was originally the 11th-round pick of the Mariners back in 2013 out of high school in North Carolina. He will be 23 years old throughout the 2018 season and was added to the 40-man roster on Monday.
photo by Kelly McGlohon
#14 C Mitch Garver
Garver had another strong Garver-esque season in 2017 in Rochester. The 26-year-old hit .291/.387/.541 (.928) with 29 doubles and 17 home runs. He won his second Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Year award (previously won in 2014 at Cedar Rapids). He even ended the season with six weeks in the big leagues and a spot on the Twins playoff roster. After four years at the University of New Mexico, Garver was the Twins ninth-round pick in 2013. His defense behind the plate was questioned earlier in his career, but he’s become at least a very solid defender with a rocket for an arm. With Jason Castro around the next two years, Garver should be the backup, though he should get a lot of playing time against left-handers or maybe at first base or DH too. I think he can be an above average starting MLB catcher. I just wonder (and hope) if he'll get that opportunity at some point.
#13 LHP Lewis Thorpe
Thorpe first became a household name in 2013 when he debuted in the States and posted a 2.05 ERA in the GCL. In his 44 innings, he walked six and struck out 64. A year later, he was an 18-year-old pitching well in the Midwest League. Unfortunately, in his final start he hurt his elbow and missed the next two-plus seasons. He returned in 2017, with a promotion to Ft. Myers. He posted a 2.69 ERA and in 77 innings he walked 31 and struck out 84. He also made one start in Chattanooga. While he hasn’t pitched a lot as a professional and obviously very little over the last three years, the Twins added him to their 40-man roster this week. The left-hander has a fastball in the 91-93 range with a good curveball and a changeup.
#12 OF LaMonte Wade
Wade was playing well in the Arizona Fall League when his season came to an abrupt ending due to a collision in the outfield that gave him a concussion. Wade was the Twins ninth-round pick in 2015 out of Maryland. Since signing, he has been consistently productive. He has an incredible eye and approach at the plate. He’s walked more than he’s struck out at every level including AA Chattanooga this year (77 BB, 71 K). He has posted an OPS over .800 at every level he’s played at. I also believe that he will hit for a lot more power than he’s shown to this point in his career. It’s there. Defensively, he is capable of playing center field, though the Twins have a pretty good center fielder right now so Wade will likely play one of the corner spots. Wade will turn 24 on New Year’s Day.
#11 1B Lewin Diaz
Signed to a seven-figure bonus back in July of 2013, Diaz has worked his way up the organization one step at a time. At 6-4 and 250 pounds, he has great power and immense power potential. In 122 games with Cedar Rapids this year, he hit .292/.329/.444 (.773) with 33 doubles and 12 home runs. He uses the whole field. He could hit for average and power. He’s got room for growth as a player. Defensively, he’s more athletic than his size might indicate. He played some outfield before signing with the Twins, but clearly, first base is his position. He just turned 21 earlier this week. Diaz was left unprotected by the Twins this week. While I have said repeatedly the last couple of months that Diaz is a Top 10 Twins prospect, I wind up placing him 11th (though the difference in ceiling from 7-11 is pretty minor).
So there you have it, my choices for Twins prospects 11-15. Next week, we’ll return with my choices for the Top 10 Twins prospects.
Part 1: Prospects 41-50
Part 2: Prospects 31-40
Part 3: Prospects 26-30
Part 4: Prospects 21-25
Part 5: Prospects 16-20
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