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Report from The Fort: Royce Lewis Tears ACL, Will Miss 2021 Season


FORT MYERS - The Twins announced on Wednesday morning the Twins prospect Royce Lewis has a torn ACL. He will have surgery on Friday in Minneapolis and then rehab in Ft. Myers. He will miss the 2021 season.Lewis reported this weekend, went through COVID protocol and had his physical on Monday. He reported some soreness in his right knee. He felt a little soreness doing some side-to-side running, and then slipped on some ice in Texas. A subsequent MRI revealed the full tear.

 

Lewis is the Twins #2 prospect in the Twins organization (who Twins Daily, coincidentally, profiled today) and was expected to get a full year's at-bats in some combination of AA-Witchita or AAA-St. Paul. He struggled in 2019 in A ball, but rebounded in the fall in the Arizona Fall League, setting up high expectations for 2020.

 

He spent 2020 training in St. Paul during the cancelled minor league season, where Falvey said the organization saw a lot of development, especially defensively. "Defensively, he can make the flash play as well as anybody", said Falvey. "He can go extend - his athleticism just plays - but those routine plays and getting those ground balls regularly, that was an area of focus for him developmentally. And we thought he did a good job over there last year."

 

As a result, the Twins were very interested to see how he developed this year. His natural track would have been to start at AA, but Falvey admitted they were waiting to see where he was at the end of camp before making a decision. Instead, the 21-year-old will go through a 9-12 month rehab period, returning in 2021.

 

Following the day's workout, Rocco Baldelli addressed the media. "It’s very tough news in a lot of ways. I feel for Royce more than anything else. He was very much looking forward to getting going this year. A lot of enthusiasm coming in, and to deal with that, it’s not easy. It’s certainly a setback but one that he can certainly overcome."

Shortstops have generated quite a bit of news in these early days of spring training. Yesterday, the Twins announced they had signed 34-year-old Andrew Romine to a minor league deal and invited him to camp. Asked point blank if that was related to their concerns about Lewis, Falvey said that had been arranged before Lewis' physical.

 

The Twins also announced that starting shortstop Andrelton Simmons is not in camp, stuck in Curacoa with travel issues, and that he is not the only player who is. The Twins expect that situation to be resolved, but did not give a timeframe.

 

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I was hoping to get to watch him live in St Paul some time later this year.

 

Well, that's the Twins for ya. When's the last time they had a heralded prospect make it through the minors and into the majors without a significant injury along the way?

 

I fully expect Alex Kirilloff to be killed by a falling blimp any day now.

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I was hoping to get to watch him live in St Paul some time later this year.

 

Well, that's the Twins for ya. When's the last time they had a heralded prospect make it through the minors and into the majors without a significant injury along the way?

 

I fully expect Alex Kirilloff to be killed by a falling blimp any day now.

I heard he bought tickets for Titanic 2's maiden voyage...

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I was hoping to get to watch him live in St Paul some time later this year.

 

Well, that's the Twins for ya. When's the last time they had a heralded prospect make it through the minors and into the majors without a significant injury along the way?

 

I fully expect Alex Kirilloff to be killed by a falling blimp any day now.

Kiriloff already missed the entire 2017 season with an injury - if anyone, it'd likely be Larnach as he hasn't had an injury issues and has torn up the minors so far. Or maybe Jeffers.

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Sounds like when I tore my ACL. Had no pain, just instability in the leg. Especially moving laterally and twisting.

 

The more medical experts can correct me, but I think you tend to get more pain with a ACL tear when the MCL and meniscus are involved. They call it the Unhappy Triad

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Andrelton Simmons needs to be put in bubble wrap right now. The SS depth is non-existent.

Simmons
Polanco
Gordon
Riddle
Romine

Ick.

With all due respect, having a 2019 All-Star in Polanco as the backup SS isn't exactly "non-existent", at least in my opinion.

 

I know his fielding has been dragged through the mud, but in my opinion it's gone way too far. People here literally think Polanco is the worst fielding baseball player to ever put on a baseball uniform.

 

Polanco is more than sufficient at shortstop and he's made great plays. Better than Simmons? No way. Chopped liver? Most certainly not.

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Why do our top prospects either get knee injuries or Tommy John? Off the top of my head;

Joe Mauer
Miguel Sano
Alex Kiriloff
Royce Lewis
Jason Kubel
Francisco Liriano
Luis arraez

 

You could look at any team's prospects over the years and find some that have had injuries that held back their minor league development 

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With all due respect, having a 2019 All-Star in Polanco as the backup SS isn't exactly "non-existent", at least in my opinion.

 

I know his fielding has been dragged through the mud, but in my opinion it's gone way too far. People here literally think Polanco is the worst fielding baseball player to ever put on a baseball uniform.

 

Polanco is more than sufficient at shortstop and he's made great plays. Better than Simmons? No way. Chopped liver? Most certainly not.

 

We're one injury away from Polanco being back at SS, Arraez at 2B, and ???? as their backup. The depth isn't there.

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Luckily, there will be a lot of SS depth in free agency next year. Lindor, Story, Correa, Seager, Baez, Simmons, Semien. Even guys like Miguel Rojas, Brandon Crawford and Jose Iglesias could hold it down for a year. This isn’t the end of the world, but it will hurt the Twins’ salary the next couple of years

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Aarrgghh!!!  Well, that is NOT the news I expected to hear this morning.  Real bummer for Lewis as this appeared to be a pivotal evaluation year for him.  Selfishly, I was really looking forward to him starting at AA Wichita as I've already arranged for a 2-day road trip (May 5-6) to Springfield, MO as the Wind Surge open their season against the Cardinals AA team.  Hopefully, he his rehab is successful, but this may force Falvey to look at re-signing Simmons to another year as its doubtful Lewis will be in any position to start at SS in 2022.

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You could look at any team's prospects over the years and find some that have had injuries that held back their minor league development

Injuries, sure. That’s why I didn’t include Buxton. We seem to lead the way with top prospects with Knee or Tommy John injuries though, which are obviously much more serious

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