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Article: Part 6: Seth's Updated Top 50 Twins Prospect...

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Part 1: Seth's Updated Top 50 Prospects (41-50)

As we await the end of the World Series, as well as the Twins Daily Offseason Handbook being available for download, I thought it would be fun to start on my preliminary 2018 Minnesota Twins Top 50 prospect list. As Cody mentioned in his article tonight, he and I, along with Tom and Jeremy, are diving heavily into the 2018 Twins Prospect Handbook. I like to do this preliminary ranking and then see how it changes after doing a ton of research and talking to several people.
Image courtesy of Seth Stohs, Twins Daily
So tonight is the first installment. Here are my choices for Twins prospects 41-50. Be sure to ask questions and share your thoughts in the comments after you’ve had a chance to read through this list.


#50 LHP Jovani Moran

The 20-year-old southpaw was the Twins seventh-round draft pick in 2015 out of Puerto Rico. He missed the 2016 season due to bone spurs in his elbow, but he had those cleaned up and went to Elizabethton in 2017. He was named the Twins Daily Short-Season Pitcher of the Year. In 24.2 innings, he walked six and struck out 45 (16.4 K/9). That didn’t include the playoffs where he starred for the Appy League champs. Will he remain in the bullpen? That’s to be determined. As E-Twins manager Ray Smith told Twins Daily, ““We didn’t want to force anything with Jovani due to his arm issues last year. I’ve never seen him being utilized in a starting role, but with this ‘stuff’ being so good, it might turn out to be his role once it’s decided that his arm will continue to be 100%””


#49 LHP Andrew Vasquez

Vasquez was the Twins 32nd-round pick in 2015 out of Division III Westmost College where he teamed with Hector Lujan. The left-hander split his 2017 season between Cedar Rapids and Ft. Myers. He combined to post a 2.02 ERA. In his 58 innings, he walked 20 and struck out 85 batters. While he works in the low-90s, he’s got a lot of movement on his fastball and has a terrific slider that gets a lot of swings and misses. (Get to know Andrew Vasquez)

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#48 Alex Robinson

There are a lot of quality relief pitcher prospects in the Twins system, and when it comes to pure ceiling, Robinson might be right at the top. The left-hander consistently hits 97-98 mph with his fastball and has a devastating slider. He was the Twins fifth-round pick in 2015 out of Maryland, but he really fought his control. He spent 2015 and 2016 in Elizabethton where he struck out 67 batters in 45 innings, but he also walked 50! He began 2017 in Cedar Rapids and struck out 51 and walked 15 and struck out 51. He moved up to Ft. Myers and in 17.1 innings, he walked 13 and struck out 27. He turned 23 in August, so it is wise for the Twins to be as patient as necessary to maximize his immense talent.


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#47 Tom Hackimer

Hackimer was the Twins fourth-round pick in 2016 out of St. Johns. The side-winding right-hander profiles pretty similarly to Twins rookie of the year Trevor Hildenberger. He began 2017 in Cedar Rapids where he posted a 1.50 ERA and a miniscule 0.58 WHIP in 24 innings. He then worked 37.1 innings in Ft. Myers where he posted a 1.93 ERA and a 1.02 WHIP. Combined, he walked 22 and struck out 71 batters in 61.1 innings. He is now pitching the Arizona Fall League. (Get to know Tom Hackimer, and from last week, Catch Up with him in Arizona)

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#46 OF Jaylin Davis

Jaylin Davis was the Twins 24th-round pick in 2015 out of Appalachian State. He ended the 2016 season with 52 games in Cedar Rapids. That’s where he began his 2017 season as well. In 66 games for the Kernels, he hit .267/.316/.486 (.802) with 13 doubles and 12 home runs. After helping the team to a first half playoff berth, he was promoted up to Ft. Myers where he played in 59 games. He struggled, hitting just .237 with three home runs. But his power is legit. He’s a good athlete who took to playing right field in 2017. (Get to know Jaylin)

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#45 JT Chargois

If you were like me, you were hoping that the 2012 second-round pick would not be on this list. In fact, I had hopes that he would be the Twins closer by midseason. Instead, he fought elbow issues throughout the entire season and did not pitch outside of two games in late April in Rochester. His mid-to-upper 90s fastball, slider, and performance last September make him incredibly intriguing, and he should probably be higher on this list. He’ll turn 27 in December. (Get to know JT.)

#44 Luke Bard

Bard was the Twins second supplemental first-round pick in 2012 out of Georgia Tech. He has really only been healthy the last two seasons. In 2016, he was known to have one of the top spin rates in the Twins system. In 2017, he was a strikeout machine. In 52.1 innings at Chattanooga, he walked 20 and struck out 78 (13.4 K/9). He moved up to Rochester where he walked four and struck out 21 batters in 13 innings (14.5 K/9). He does struggle with control and command at times, but the soon-to-be-27-year-old should be considered for a 40-man roster spot in November.


#43 OF Jean-Carlos Arias

Arias returned to the GCL in 2017 after posting a mere .531 OPS there in 2016. He broke out, hitting .298/.359/.476 (.835) with seven doubles, four triples and five home runs. He also stole ten bases. Arias has a lot of tools. He’s got speed and a strong arm. He has the potential to hit for some average, but he also has the potential to grow and add more power. Arias will turn 20 in January and should move up to Elizabethton in 2018.


#42 Trey Cabbage

Cabbage was the Twins fourth-round pick in 2015 out of high school in Tennessee. He’s missed some time the last couple of years with injury. He returned to Elizabethton to start the Appy League season, but after just 13 games, he was promoted to the Kernels where he played left field and third base. A left-hander with a smooth swing, the 20-year-old is a terrific athlete, big and strong, with a lot of power potential. He’ll have to work to put the ball in play more, but as he grows, the talent is there to be quite good. (Get to know Trey, and Catch Up with him)


#41 RHP Tyler Benninghoff

20-year-old Benninghoff was the Twins 11th-round pick in 2016 out of high school in Missouri. Almost immediately after signing, he underwent Tommy John surgery. He worked hard to rehab and returned to the GCL mound for his professional debut. He worked four innings in four outings. Benninghoff likely would have been a second or third round pick had he been healthy. He’s blessed with a strong arm and good offspeed pitches. So this ranking is fully based on projection. Hopefully he’ll be fully recovered and be able to get on the mound consistently in 2018. (Get to know Tyler)

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So there you have the first installment of my Top 50 Twins Prospects. That was prospects 41-50. In the coming days, the countdown will continue.


Feel free to leave any questions or comments that you may have.

By the way, there is a complete Organizational Depth chart in the Twins Daily Offseason Handbook, along with much more. To pre-order your copy, click on the banner below. (And as a reminder, there's no reason to not download it since you get to name your price.)

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24 Comments

Two things stand out--these aren't obscure names.  There are some well-known guys in this bunch (well known by me at least.)

 

Also, it is hard to believe how old Chargois and Bard are and still on this list.  I know it is because of injury, but still.  Seems like an anomaly.

 

I'm much more used to seeing the likes of Arias and Morani here--lower profile international guys who have tools but not the hype.

 

Thanks as always, Seth.

    • gunnarthor, Mike Frasier Law and DelusionalTwinsFan like this

Vasquez and Morani have too much talent to be 49 and 50, Seth.And by sending him to the AFL, Vasquez is awfully close to becoming a Twin.

 

I don't see how the Twins will have room to add Bard to the 40-man.Not only are there several relievers ahead of him, I count seven starters who should be added (won't be room for all seven).If he isn't added, is it likely he is taken by someone in the Rule 5?

 

By the way, what is Chargois' injury status?

    • Steve Lein likes this
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Tommygun921
Oct 31 2017 07:44 AM
Pretty nice to see two guys that "could" be impact arms in the Twins bullpen in '18 ranked so low in Bard and Chargois. As well as Hackimer being a Sept call up possibility?
    • 70charger likes this

 

Pretty nice to see two guys that "could" be impact arms in the Twins bullpen in '18 ranked so low in Bard and Chargois. As well as Hackimer being a Sept call up possibility?

 

I agree with this. Chargois, if healthy, should be up a bunch. Bard certainly could be, though he could also be lost in the Rule 5. Hackimer is kind of on the Hildenberger schedule. IF that's true, he would start 2018 in Chattanooga and possibly get to Rochester late in the season. 

    • MN_ExPat and Original Whizzinator like this
I know it's tough to rank relievers, but I would expect some of these names to be a lot higher. They're going to have a lot more potential to impact the major league roster than most guys in the 15ish to 40 range. Great stuff as always though!
    • sploorp and howieramone2 like this
rdehring - I've thought and said for a while that I think the Twins - no matter what they do - are going to end up losing one, probably more, players in the rule 5 draft. Too many guys all in the same spot that need protecting when there's not enough room and they all profile as the types who get plucked. Hopefully the Twins identify the right ones!
    • Original Whizzinator likes this

Chargois being this low on the list and 27 years old is concerning.We have watched guys with stuff like Burdi and Meyer and May constantly having an issue or two that keeps them from performing.At this point in the listing I am more interested in 20 - 22 year old guys who can move through with speed.Robinson is particularly intriguing as a hard throwing lefty.I like Bennington and Vasquez, but question if Bard will ever make it. 

​Good winter fodder.Thank you.

 

I know it's tough to rank relievers, but I would expect some of these names to be a lot higher. They're going to have a lot more potential to impact the major league roster than most guys in the 15ish to 40 range. Great stuff as always though!

 

I've always ranked relief pitchers much lower than most. There are question marks with each of the relievers in this range, at least for me... Injury, Age, stuff... or a combination of the three. There are more relievers ahead as well. 

    • Steve Lein, biggentleben and sploorp like this
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IA #1 Twins Fan
Oct 31 2017 09:31 AM

What about Edgar Corcino?

Heard he continues to work out with Berrios and is a solid player both defensively and offensively

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clutterheart
Oct 31 2017 10:02 AM

Hard to believe that Cabbage won't turn 21 until May of next year. It seems like he has been around for a long time.He hasn't hit that well, but he is still young enough to capture that upside and get back on track.  

    • gunnarthor and sploorp like this

 

What about Edgar Corcino?

Heard he continues to work out with Berrios and is a solid player both defensively and offensively

 

Corcino, for me, was just outside the Top 50. I really like his skill set. He's a potential 4th OF. He'll hit a little, has doubles power and can play all three outfield spots well. Good arm. He could get a cup of coffee. No question on the work ethic. 

 

Hard to believe that Cabbage won't turn 21 until May of next year. It seems like he has been around for a long time.He hasn't hit that well, but he is still young enough to capture that upside and get back on track.  

 

He'll be good. He's very strong, very athletic. Obviously he's got work to do, but getting on the field is what he needs. Should spend 2018 in Cedar Rapids. Big power potential. He's a guy who could move up a lot next year. 

    • MN_ExPat likes this

Bard has too much stuff and is too dangerous to lose.But knowing the Twins we probably will.

IMO I would add Bard to the 40 man, and DFA Chargois. I'm pretty sour about Chargois losing 3 full seasons due to arm injuries. Bard had some bad luck at the beginning of his career, but as Seth said, has been healthy and rising the last 2 seasons.

Morani looks like a fast track candidate - as he fills in, with those numbers. What kind of stuff are we talking about here?

 

Morani looks like a fast track candidate - as he fills in, with those numbers. What kind of stuff are we talking about here?

 

Definitely not a fast track guy. He may eventually become a starter. He's going to have to build up his strength, stamina. If he stays in teh bullpen, he might move up fairly quickly... But he's a low-90s, three-pitch guy. 

Don’t get too worked up about minor league relievers. They are in the pen in the minors due to flaws. The best pitchers are almost always in the rotation. History of the Twins (Aguilera, Guadado, Perkins ...) and most other teams is that the best relievers are failed starters. The future of the pen probably rests with May as well as Gonsalves, Romero, Jorge, and other current minor league starters. That is not to say that a couple of the current crop of minor league relievers won’t pitch in the majors, but exposing them to other teams doesn’t mean they will be lost (see Mason Melotakis).
Don’t get too worked up about minor league relievers. They are in the pen in the minors due to flaws. The best pitchers are almost always in the rotation. History of the Twins (Aguilera, Guadado, Perkins ...) and most other teams is that the best relievers are failed starters. The future of the pen probably rests with MayGonsalves, Romero, Jorge, and other current minor league starters.

Next year will be pretty big for Cabbage. He needs to start hitting otherwise they'll let him go.

 

I like Davis and hope he can continue to develop for us.

 

As to the relief pitchers, I don't really care that much. Low level pitchers generally can put up insane strike out numbers b/c the batters they are facing aren't going to go much further than rookie league ball. So take those numbers with a huge grain of salt. But it is nice having a lot of potential closer arms in the system even if, individually, they probably aren't that impressive.

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twinsfanstreif
Nov 01 2017 04:30 PM
Dang, our system must be super deep if these guys are the 41-50 prospects! These guys are all super talented and could make an impact at one point or another, not just a bunch of no name "will never make it to the majors" type of guys
    • 70charger likes this
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biggentleben
Nov 01 2017 04:42 PM

 

Two things stand out--these aren't obscure names.  There are some well-known guys in this bunch (well known by me at least.)

 

I was able to go out to 100 a few weeks ago without a lot of trouble. The biggest issue was who to leave off, especially among relievers, as the Twins do have a significant amount of guys who have a legit chance of a major league career of some variety in the bullpen, and that's of value for sure.

 

Already hearing buzz from guys of the Twins having a top 10 system, and the more talk that there is about the system, the more people seem to really like the depth.

    • 70charger likes this
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biggentleben
Nov 01 2017 04:50 PM

 

Don’t get too worked up about minor league relievers. They are in the pen in the minors due to flaws. The best pitchers are almost always in the rotation. History of the Twins (Aguilera, Guadado, Perkins ...) and most other teams is that the best relievers are failed starters. The future of the pen probably rests with May as well as Gonsalves, Romero, Jorge, and other current minor league starters. That is not to say that a couple of the current crop of minor league relievers won’t pitch in the majors, but exposing them to other teams doesn’t mean they will be lost (see Mason Melotakis).

 

That once was true. That has significantly changed in the last decade or so, to the point where teams are intentionally developing guys in the bullpen and choosing not to develop them as starters. Certainly, the decision to move them to the bullpen is happening sooner now than it ever was before with guys who have the chance to be legit elite relievers. There's good reason to get behind certain guys, but there's also a lot of "feel" on relievers. A guy that Seth watches throw 3 pitches in the bullpen and top out at 92 from the left side could look like a LOOGY at best sort of guy, but I watch him and see something in his slider that makes me think he could have a shot at working against both sides - and either one of us could be right.

 

Like Seth, I often discount guys in the bullpen a tick or two because they're in the bullpen, but you cannot deny a guy who has shown elite stuff and health up to the upper minors. That's when those guys start ranking in top 15-20 range, even as a reliever.

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biggentleben
Nov 01 2017 04:52 PM

 

Next year will be pretty big for Cabbage. He needs to start hitting otherwise they'll let him go.

 

I like Davis and hope he can continue to develop for us.

 

As to the relief pitchers, I don't really care that much. Low level pitchers generally can put up insane strike out numbers b/c the batters they are facing aren't going to go much further than rookie league ball. So take those numbers with a huge grain of salt. But it is nice having a lot of potential closer arms in the system even if, individually, they probably aren't that impressive.

 

Davis is fun to watch play the game. He's a guy who you can tell understands how lucky he is to be playing the game now after losing a season and having that chance possibly taken away from him (his injury to his shoulder was pretty gruesome). Hard not to cheer for a guy like that.

    • gunnarthor likes this

I'm really excited to see what Benninghoff can do. He's one of those guys you gamble with after the 10th round if you've got the pool money to do it. He got mid-third round money, so there's got to be some real projection there.

    • gunnarthor likes this

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