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Article: Twins Daily 2018 Top Prospects: #10 Akil Baddoo

akil baddoo byron buxton ray smith
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#1 Cody Christie

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Posted 07 February 2018 - 08:30 PM

In recent drafts, Georgia has provided some strong prospects for the Twins organization. Byron Buxton was the number two overall pick out of Georgia. Fans saw his ability to impact both sides of the ball in 2017. Now the Twins have another center fielder from Georgia who is making his way to Target Field.

Akil Baddoo was taken by the Twins with the 74th pick of the 2016 MLB Draft. As a 17-year old, he struggled during his professional debut, hitting .178/.299/.271 with a 36 to 18 strikeout-to-walk ratio. He was almost three years younger than the competition in the GCL so he’d start there again in 2017.

That’s where one of the organization’s best seasons would begin to unfold…Age: 19 (DOB: 8/16/1998)
2017 Stats (Rookie): .323/.436/.527, 19 2B, 5 3B, 4 HR, 9-for-13 in stolen base attempts
ETA: 2021
2017 Ranking: NR

National Top 100 Rankings
BA: NR | MLB : NR | ESPN: NR | BP: NR

What’s To Like
Baddoo broke out in 2017. A year after struggling to a .570 OPS in the GCL, the 18-year old mashed the ball for both rookie league teams. In his second stint in the GCL, he hit .267/.360/.440 with eight extra-base hits in 75 at-bats. He caught fire after being promoted to Elizabethton where he hit .357/.478/.579 with 20 extra-base hits in 126 at-bats. He also showed a very advanced approach at the plate with a 32 to 36 strikeout to walk ratio. Baddoo’s OPS ranked second in the Appalachian League.

Only 15 of his plate appearances came against younger pitchers and he posted a .954 OPS when facing older competition. Defensively, Baddoo has the athleticism to play all three outfield positions but the majority of his starts come in center field. During the 2017 campaign, he didn’t commit an error in over 300 inning in center.

Ray Smith, the manager of the E-Twins, had glowing reviews when asked about Baddoo’s impact on the team. “Our club seemed to kick it into a higher gear once Akil arrived. Deep in counts, would get on base via walks, base hits, etc. All while showing extra-base pop and occasional home run power. [He] covered ground defensively... ran bases aggressively and showed up every day.”

In the E-Twins’ Appy League Finals-clinching victory, Baddoo went 2-for-4 with a double, a triple and a walk. Following his outstanding season, Baddoo was named the Twins Daily Short Season Hitter of the Year.

What’s Left To Work On
Leading into last season, Baddoo added 15 pounds and continued to show speed on the base paths. He entered last season at 5’11 and 195 pounds. Since he is still a teenager, there could be room to improve his strength and add more power. For him to continue to trend toward being a five-tool player, he needs to find the right balance of adding strength and not sacrificing speed.

Obviously, he will need to show that 2017’s performance at the plate wasn’t a fluke. Almost all of Baddoo’s power came against right-handed pitching where he compiled a 1.013 OPS. His numbers were still strong against lefties (.328/.426/.414) but he only collected five extra-base hits. With more experience, he will hopefully be able to hit for more power against southpaws.

While his defensive skills have been strong, his arm continues to be an area needing improvement. Throughout his minor league career, he’s only had one outfield assist and it came when he was playing right field. He might need to shift to a corner outfield spot if his arm doesn’t improve.

What’s Next
Baddoo should get his first taste of full season action during 2018 especially based on his time with the E-Twins. If he continues to hit like he did in 2017, there is a chance he could crack into some top 100 prospect lists during next offseason. He could spend 2018 in Cedar Rapids with a chance to make it to Fort Myers in the second-half. Baddoo seems like he could be a similar player to former Twin Matt Lawton.

TD Top Prospects: #20-16
TD Top Prospects: #15-11
TD Top Prospects: #1-9 (Coming Soon)

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Cody Christie
@nodaktwinsfan
 


#2 Vanimal46

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Posted 07 February 2018 - 08:33 PM

The upside is big with Baddoo. He is pretty ripped at 195 pounds. Looking forward to seeing pictures of him in Fort Myers!
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#3 FlauerPauer

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Posted 07 February 2018 - 09:03 PM

The only thing not to like about this guy is he is only 5-11. Hard to get too much bigger to add power without sacrificing speed and agility. Maybe he still will grow a couple inches, but another Matt Lawton wouldn’t be a bad thing.
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#StrikeoutsMatter

#4 Seth Stohs

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Posted 07 February 2018 - 10:24 PM

 

The upside is big with Baddoo. He is pretty ripped at 195 pounds. Looking forward to seeing pictures of him in Fort Myers!

 

I'll be sure to take a bunch... Ha!

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#5 Seth Stohs

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Posted 07 February 2018 - 10:25 PM

 

The only thing not to like about this guy is he is only 5-11. Hard to get too much bigger to add power without sacrificing speed and agility. Maybe he still will grow a couple inches, but another Matt Lawton wouldn’t be a bad thing.

 

Another Matt Lawton would be terrific, and that's probably a fair comp for now... Good on base skills, good speed and good power. I like it. 

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#6 gunnarthor

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Posted 07 February 2018 - 10:26 PM

One of my favorite guys. I expect he'll be on national rankings a year from now. Hopefully he continues with the strong eye at the plate and gathers a lot of walks.

 

(Also realized that his fellow second rounder, Jose Miranda, probably won't be in the top 20. That's a shame. I like him a lot, too)

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#7 beckmt

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Posted 07 February 2018 - 10:35 PM

I was hoping a little more toward Kirby Puckett.Still a good comp.Thanks.


#8 theBOMisthebomb

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Posted 08 February 2018 - 06:22 AM

I was hoping a little more toward Kirby Puckett.Still a good comp.Thanks.

Yes, I had a left handed Kirby as the best case scenario. Wouldn't it be nice if they all turned into Hall of Famers? The buzz on Baddoo is encouraging. Thanks for giving a warm ray of hope on a bitter cold February morning.

#9 clutterheart

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Posted 08 February 2018 - 06:33 AM

 

The upside is big with Baddoo. He is pretty ripped at 195 pounds. Looking forward to seeing pictures of him in Fort Myers!

 

His instagram:.  

https://www.instagram.com/akilbaddoo/

 

hope that strength translates on the field!

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#10 big dog

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Posted 08 February 2018 - 06:36 AM

Agreed with above, another Matt Lawton would be a nice piece to have.


#11 Vanimal46

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Posted 08 February 2018 - 08:36 AM

His instagram:.
https://www.instagram.com/akilbaddoo/

hope that strength translates on the field!


He doesn't skip days at the gym, eh?

#12 SF Twins Fan

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Posted 08 February 2018 - 08:38 AM

He might be the prospect I'm most excited to follow this season. It'll be interesting to see where he end the season.

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#13 slash129

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Posted 08 February 2018 - 08:56 AM

 

His instagram:.  

https://www.instagram.com/akilbaddoo/

 

hope that strength translates on the field!

 

I know it's only instagram, but it leaves a positive impression.It appears his game, keeping himself in top form for his game and his family/friends are what's important to him.Not Nuke Lalooshing around.

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#14 jrod23

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Posted 08 February 2018 - 09:18 AM

 

I know it's only instagram, but it leaves a positive impression.It appears his game, keeping himself in top form for his game and his family/friends are what's important to him.Not Nuke Lalooshing around.

 

I don't think I've ever heard Nuke used as a verb.Well played.

 

Seems the Twins (pre-Falvine & currently) have drafted, not only very talented players in the past few years towards the top of the draft, but driven kids with good heads on their shoulders.

 

Akil's on my top 5 to watch list this summer.Looking forward to it.Hope he likes pork tenderloins!!!Cedar Rapids is gonna be stacked!!!

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#15 Tibs

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Posted 08 February 2018 - 09:21 AM

 

One of my favorite guys. I expect he'll be on national rankings a year from now. Hopefully he continues with the strong eye at the plate and gathers a lot of walks.

 

(Also realized that his fellow second rounder, Jose Miranda, probably won't be in the top 20. That's a shame. I like him a lot, too)

I was just thinking the same thing about Miranda. I'm way excited to see all those Elizabethton hitters in full season leagues this year 

I couldn't be a player because of bad eyesight, so I decided to be an umpire instead.

#16 ashburyjohn

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Posted 08 February 2018 - 09:36 AM

I don't think I've ever heard Nuke used as a verb.

Perhaps you didn't live during the Cold War. But, you've never made microwave popcorn? :)

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Nothing is so annoying as someone going on talking when I'm interrupting.


#17 Thrylos

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Posted 08 February 2018 - 11:37 AM

 

Another Matt Lawton would be terrific, and that's probably a fair comp for now... Good on base skills, good speed and good power. I like it. 

 

I see Bo Jackson all over him (albeit an inch or 2 shorter.) Baddoo is built like a tailback.

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#18 Drew

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Posted 08 February 2018 - 11:44 AM

Grade 80 name, that somehow makes me more confident in his future than if his name were Bob Brown.

 

I love our farm system right now. We may not have a Buxton down there at the moment but our depth is going to be really interesting to see evolve this season. Seems there are several guys who could make a leap into top 50 prospect territory.


#19 Thrylos

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Posted 08 February 2018 - 12:44 PM

 

I love our farm system right now. We may not have a Buxton down there at the moment but our depth is going to be really interesting to see evolve this season. Seems there are several guys who could make a leap into top 50 prospect territory.

 

Indeed, regarding the system. On the other hand, when all is said and done, I am not sure that Royce Lewis will not be better player than Buxton.We just got to wait 20 years or so for that ;)

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#20 Seth Stohs

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Posted 08 February 2018 - 03:40 PM

Our rankings of Baddoo:

 

Seth: (8), Nick (14), Cody (13), Tom (10).

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