In my fourth annual Minnesota Twins Prospect Handbook
, which became available in January, I posted my Top 30 Twins Prospect list as well as my annual rankings back five or six years. I enjoy looking at those lists for a couple of reasons. First, it is humbling. No one will likely ever produce a top 10 list that is 100% accurate. Second, it’s a fun reminder of some of the names from the past that didn’t stick around or make it. Third, it’s just fun to review to see what I have learned since then.
Today, I would like to take a look at my top 20 Twins prospects from before the season started and provide a quick update on how they’re doing. Some will move up, others will (or have) moved down. In parentheses, you will see where I ranked that player when I did an updated ranking before the June draft. In the comments, please feel free to discuss, but also feel free to post your updated Top 10 list as of now.
#1 (1) – Miguel Sano – 19 years old – 3B
In Beloit, he is hitting .259/.380/.521 (.902) with 24 doubles, 4 triples, 24 homers and 90 RBI. He has stolen seven bases. He has also committed 40 errors.
#2 (2) – Eddie Rosario – 20 years old – 2B
Also in Beloit, Rosario missed just over a month of games after being hit in the mouth by a line drive in batting practice, but he’s back and hitting again. He is hitting .301/.359/.480 (.839) with 24 doubles, three triples, eight homers and 54 RBI. He has committed just 12 errors at second base, and is also playing about a game a week in centerfield.
#3 (5) – Oswaldo Arcia – 21 years old – RF
It’s been a great year for the Venezuelan outfielder. After a slow start in Ft. Myers, he took off. He played in the FSL All Star game and then hit a double off of Jameson Taillon in the Futures Game. He was promoted to AA New Britain in mid-June and he has been even better. Overall, he’s hitting .319/.390/.534 (.924) with 31 doubles, five triples 14 home runs and 78 RBI. He has six errors defensively, but he also has 15 outfield assists.
#4 (4) – Aaron Hicks – 22 years old – CF
Hicks has seemingly turned a corner since his strong showing in the AFL last year. In AA this year, he has taken off. He is hitting .281/.381/.456 with 19 doubles, seven triples, 12 home runs and 55 RBI. He’s also stolen 27 bases and has ten outfield assists while showing great range and a very strong arm.
#5 (7) – Joe Benson – 24 year old – OF
It’s been a disappointing season for Benson since a nice showing in spring training. He began the season in Rochester where he really struggled before being sent back to New Britain. He then had to have surgery on his hamate bone and missed 5-6 weeks. He has returned and is back at New Britain, but the struggles continue. Overall this season, Benson is hitting .209/.294/.350 (.644) with 13 doubles, three triples and six home runs. He’s also 13/17 in steal attempts. He remains one of the best defensive outfielders in the organization.
#6 (3) – Liam Hendriks – 23 years old – RHP
Hendriks made the Opening Day roster but was sent down later in the first month. He got another opportunity in June that went miserably as well. However, in Rochester, he has been terrific. He is a 9-2 with a 1.99 ERA and a 0.95 WHIP. In 99.1 innings, he has given up just 69 hits, walked 25 and struckout 76. He will get another shot soon.
#7 (6) – Kyle Gibson – 24 years old – RHP
Hearing reports that Gibson is throwing just as hard, if not harder, than he did before his September Tommy John surgery is certainly encouraging. He has remained on schedule and tonight will make his first start of the year for the Ft. Myers Miracle. In a month’s worth of rehab games in the GCL, Gibson was 0-0 with a 2.45 ERA and a 0.89 WHIP. In 14.2 innings, he gave up nine hits, walked four and struck out 14. Of course, the numbers are far less important than the process.
#8 (13) – Adrian Salcedo – 21 years old – RHP
The lanky right-hander struggled in the early season. He was 0-2 with a 5.87 ERA and a 1.83 WHIP. Unlike his previous seasons, he struggled with control, issuing more walks than ever. Something wasn’t right. He was put on the DL with elbow concerns early in the year. He came back and struggled more, and then he was put on the DL with shoulder issues.
#9 (12) – Alex Wimmers – 23 years old – RHP
After all of his control issues early last season, he ended the year with a no-hitter for the Miracle. He had a solid spring and was sent to New Britain to start the season. He made his first start and hasn’t pitched since. After a couple of months rehabbing, he had Tommy John surgery.
#10 (N/A) – Chris Parmelee – 24 years old – 1B
Like Hendriks, Parmelee made the Opening Day roster. He struggled some, but when Justin Morneau started playing more 1B, he also didn’t play. He has gone to Rochester and been back up one other time. In Rochester, he is currently hitting .354/.469/.691 (1.161) with 14 doubles, 15 homers and 41 RBI. He has 37 walks to go with 33 strikeouts. Like Hendriks, he should be up again very soon.
#11 (8) – Brian Dozier – 25 years old – SS
In 84 Games with Twins, he’s hitting .234/.271/.332 (.603) with 11 doubles, a triple, six homers, 32 RBI and nine stolen bases.
#12 (9) – Travis Harrison – 19 years old – 3B
He’s hitting .310/.394/.444 (.838) with ten doubles, two triples, three homers and 18 RBI. He has 20 errors in 45 games.
#13 (25) – Tom Stuifbergen – 23 years old – RHP
He’s 4-6 with a 5.40 ERA and a 1.65 WHIP. In 53.1 innings, he’s given up 78 hits, 10 walks and 30 strikeouts.
#14 (24) – Angel Morales – 22 years old – OF
He’s hitting .207/.288/.310 (.597) with seven doubles, four triples, six homers and 28 RBI.
#15 (11) – Chris Herrmann – 24 years old – C/LF
Hitting .270/.343/.391 with 22 doubles, a triple, 9 homers and 50 RBI. He’s caught in 70 games and played LF in 26 others.
#16 (36) – Manuel Soliman – 23 years old – RHP
He made two starts for Ft. Myers before his season came to an end due to surgery on his labrum.
#17 (15) – Levi Michael – 21 years old – SS/2B
Michael was horrible in the first half and has been at least solid in the second half. He’s hitting .238/.333/.303 (.636) with 10 doubles, four triples, two homers and 33 RBI.
#18 (27) – Max Kepler – 19 years old – OF
Fair to say he’ll move way up this list after this season. He’s hitting .298/.399/.536 (.935) with 11 doubles, four triples, eight homers and 40 RBI for Elizabethton. He played solely in CF until Byron Buxton got to E-Town. Now Kepler is playing in the corners.
#19 (16) – Niko Goodrum – 20 years old – SS/3B
Like Kepler, Niko returned to E-Town, but the success (in terms of batting average) has not been there. He’s hitting .247/.367/.425 (.792) with ten doubles, six triples, three homers and 34 RBI. He’s got 13 errors between the two positions.
#20 (10) – Hudson Boyd – 19 years old – RHP
Boyd jumped to E-Town for his pro debut this year. He’s just 2-5, but his ERA is just 2.40. Half of the 24 runs he’s allowed this year have been unearned. He is posting a 1.40 WHIP. In 45 innings, he given up 47 hits, walked 16 and struck out 29.
#21 (14) – BJ Hermsen – 22 year old – RHP
After four starts in Ft. Myers (1-0, 0.78 ERA, 0.91 WHIP), Hermsen moved up to AA New Britain where he was an All Star. With the Rock Cats, he’s 10-5 with a 3.09 ERA and a 1.17 WHIP.
#22 (18) – Danny Santana – 21 years old – SS
With the Miracle, he’s hitting .283/.324/.397 (.721) with 18 doubles, eight triples, five homers and 47 RBI. He has 16 stolen bases. He has 16 errors in 67 games at SS, and another 8 errors in 32 games at 2B.
There you have it. A look at my preseason Top 20, err… Top 22 Twins prospects. What do you think? What’s your updated Top Ten?