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Minnesota Twins Prospect Handbook 2013 NOW AVAILABLE

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The Minnesota Twins Prospect Handbook 2013 is now available for $13.99. To high-level summarize, the handbook contains 191 pages of content on the Twins minor league system. You may be asking yourself, ďHow could one book possibly contain 191 pages on one teamís minor league system?Ē Iíve asked myself that question, wondering if itís too much. Hopefully below Iíll be able to show that there is a lot of value.

Taking a step back though, I have to say that it is shocking to me that this is my fifth Twins Prospect Handbook. The first cover was plain white text on a red cover. Since then, the past four covers have had players on the covers. The first book had about 81 pages. Weíve clearly increased the output since then.

Most important, however, in that first book the player profiles basically talked about when the player was drafted and/or signed and a few statistics. The content has increased because we talk about the playersí history before coming to the Twins, and we talk about statistics and some more advanced statistics (but without being overwhelming). However, we have been able to gain enough contacts to get very good scouting reports on players. In other words, there is more content, and it is significantly better.

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Letís talk about the profiles. I did something a little bit different this year. In yearís past, I put all of the players together, in alphabetical order. This year, itís still in alphabetical order, but I did separate the pitchers and the hitters. There are about 85 pitcher profiles and 68 hitter profiles.

That is a lot of profiles, and I need to thank and recognize Jeremy Nygaard and Cody Christie. As you at Twins Daily know, these two are very talented writers who have a passion for the Twins and for the minor leagues. I was honored that they were willing to help me out. They both put in a lot of time and now realize the work that it takes to put into each profile in research and writing. To be completely honest, due to life and such, without the help of those two, this yearís Prospect Handbook would not happen. So please, be sure to follow both of them on Twitter (Jeremy and Cody) and thank them.

In addition to their profiles, they each wrote a couple of articles as well. Cody wrote an article looking back at the rookies who played for the Twins in 2012. How did they do and what is their future? He also wrote an article on the rise of Tom Brunansky, as well as other coaches/managers in the Twins farm system that are prospects themselves.

Jeremy has an article looking back at the Twins 2012 draft. He also wrote an article looking at who some of the options might be when the Twins draft 4th overall in the 2013 draft. Finally, Jeremy was able to secure an interview with Jack Powell. Powell is a Twins scout, and they had a great discussion about the job, and several of the Twins recent draft picks. Jeremy also asked him about being a movie star!!

In addition to Cody and Jeremy, a couple of other Twins bloggers were gracious enough to write an article for the book. Jim Crikket (Knuckleballsblog) is a long-time Twins fan and a Cedar Rapids native who has been going to Cedar Rapids Kernels for many, many years. He wrote a very nice article on the history of the Kernels and about the stadium and the atmosphere there. Also, Paul Pleiss (Puckettís Pond and the Talk to Contact podcast) wrote a fun article talking about a baseball trip that included major league games and a bunch of minor league games. He did a nice job of illustrating why it is so much fun to attend minor league games.

I wrote articles on my choices for Twins minor league hitter of the year (Oswaldo Arcia), starting pitcher of the year (BJ Hermsen) and relief pitcher of the year (AJ Achter). Achter and Hermsen provided some quotes to discuss their seasons, their sports histories (both were stars at their high schools in multiple sports) and what they are looking forward to in 2013. I did send questions to Arcia, but he is obviously busy bashing pitching in the Venezuelan Winter League playoffs (Where he has hit three home runs already), so I didnít get quotes from him. However, I got some great quotes from his teammates about his value as a teammate and obviously as a monstrous hitter.
If you are into autographs, specifically if you are going to Twins Fest of Spring Training in Ft. Myers, then the Prospect Handbook is a must-have. Of the five players on the cover of the book, four of them will be at Twins Fest. 17 players profiled in the handbook will be at Twins Fest.

As Iíve mentioned before, the cover was put together by Josh Johnson, who also did last year. There are several photos on the covers but also throughout the book. New Britain photos were taken by Heather Cavalier, via the Rock Cats. Ft. Myers photos were taken by Greg Wagner, via the Miracle. The Byron Buxton photos were taken by Janet Carter Patton. Finally, a huge thank you to Justin Rinaldi and Rinaldi Photos. Justin has provided pictures of Snappers players the last few years.

The Twins have been brutal the last two years, and as the roster sits right now, they could lose 95+ games again in 2013. That means that there are a lot of minor leaguers who could get the opportunity with the Twins during the season. You know a bit about Kyle Gibson, Oswaldo Arcia and Aaron Hicks, but do you know much about Caleb Thielbar, Michael Tonkin, Andrew Albers and Chris Herrmann? The book includes the newest Twins minor leagues like Alex Meyer, Trevor May, Ryan Pressly and Mark Sobolewski. Think any of them will be mentioned from time to time? The beauty of the Minnesota Twins Prospect Handbook is that you can keep it by your coffee table. When Dick Bremer talks about a minor leaguer, or you want to find out what pitchers could come up to the Twins, just grab the book and do a little research. Find out which players are playing well in AA or AAA, get to know about them, and then impress your friends with how much you know.

The Twins have not gone the free agency market this offseason, at least not with any players who will hold back any top prospects, so we will likely see several more players come up to the Twins.

$13.99 for 191 pages of Twins minor league content seems fair enough. I really want it to be available for people to bring to Twins Fest. If you would like to have some copies before Twins Fest, you will really want to get them ordered within the next 24-48 hours. Get your copy of the Minnesota Twins Prospect Handbook 2013 today! (Note Ė E-Books will be coming in the near future. I wanted to get paperback books available.)

IF you have any questions, please feel free to let me know.
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