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  • Twins Prospects Certain To Be 40-Man Roster Adds


    Ted Schwerzler

    Earlier this week, I talked about which players will enter free agency after completing the 2021 World Series. With 40-man roster spots opening for the Twins, here are four players who are certain to be added in November. Who are the Rule 5 eligible prospects that make up the group?

    Image courtesy of Jonathan Dyer, USA TODAY Sports

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    Back in August, Lucas Seehafer provided a comprehensive breakdown of some roster decisions facing the Twins. Some of those players have already made their big-league debuts, and others have completed their seasons. The 40-man roster "locks" category is where we can focus today, and the four names that will soon be elevated are worth noting.

    Jose Miranda, INF
    The Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Year put up one of the most decorated seasons in recent prospect memory. Miranda posted a .973 OPS across 127 games at Double and Triple-A. I’m still not sure where he fits on the Opening Day roster for the Twins, but it is very evident that he’s ready to make an impact. Miranda could feel a further squeeze if and when Derek Falvey signs a shortstop, but on his own, you can bet he’ll keep pushing his way in.

    Josh Winder, RHP
    After a solid pro-debut season in 2019, Winder gained plenty of steam during Spring Training 2021. He did little to stop the hype train when he posted a 1.98 ERA in 10 Double-A starts before a promotion to Triple-A. Winder got just four starts for the Saints before being shut down due to injury. He’ll need to build back up this offseason and return with a clean bill of health, but barring those realities taking place, he should be expected to make starts in Minnesota in 2022.

    Cole Sands, RHP
    Another arm with an opportunity to take a further leap in 2022, Sands was a 5th round pick back in 2018. He made 18 starts for Double-A Wichita this season and turned in a 2.46 ERA. Jordan Balazovic and Jhoan Duran drew the initial talk this season, but Sands posted the performance worthy of the hype. His 10.8 K/9 was impressive, and it’s another head-turning set of outcomes following his 2019 season. Like Winder, Sands should find himself as an option for Rocco Baldelli next season.

    Royce Lewis, SS
    Once Minnesota’s top prospect and among the best in baseball, Lewis has some work ahead of him. He slumped in 2019 and was set to break out in a big way before an ACL tear ended his 2020 season before it began. Whether it’s at shortstop or in the outfield, his skillset can potentially translate into a franchise cornerstone. Lewis is a high-character guy and will undoubtedly be an asset when it comes to roster construction. I’m not sure how his timeline will look having missed two consecutive seasons worth of games, but the talent could force Minnesota’s hand sooner rather than later.

    The Twins have more than a handful of options to add to the 40-man roster this offseason, and some of those on the fringes will be tough calls, but it’s this group of four that will certainly be added to the fold.

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    all locks. good players here with exciting potential. It'll be interesting to see where Winder and Sand fall in the pecking order for pitching callups; even in a good year where the rotation is generally healthy like 2019 the twins had 9 guys make starts (I'm not counting Stashak popping in as an "opener") so even assuming the twins sign 2 FA to pair with say Ober, Ryan, and Dobnak...we should expect to see at least 5 more guys make starts for the club, possibly as many as 8. The good news is, we have Winder, Duran, Balazovic, Strotman, Canterino, Sands, and Woods Richardson who could/should all be ready to make their debut in the Twins rotation in 2022. I think this may be around what I think is the pecking order, assuming equal health? 

    Interesting to think about it: Twins starting pitching was a mess this year, but at the end of the day we still only used 13 starters plus 2 openers and whatever the hell you want to call Beau Burrows' outing. With guys like Winder and Sands coming on to the 40-man I already feel much better about our minor-league pitching depth.

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    You definitely picked some low hanging fruit in your choices. One comment about last year, many are down on FO for not protecting Baddoo, but Ober was a late add and definitely was a great add by FO. There are a few more prospects on the fence this year whether to protect or not, hopefully FO makes the correct moves.

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    I'm a little concerned about how all of the Twins pitching prospects seem to have injury issues. Sands, Canterino, Winder, Duran, a bit with Balozovic. The building of inings takes forever and the injuries just push it back further getting me paranoid about if they'll ever get there. If everyone with an injury history goes bullpen, we've got no future as a contender. But whatever, Ober was also like that and just jumped to 108 innings set to springboard to 160, so as long as all those guys hit 100 innings we're good.

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    Enlow and Vallimont were the current FO's choices on players. They need to be in on a discussion of who to keep.  Even though Enlow might not pitch this season he might be worth the roster spot to some forlorn team. Vallimont was projectable as a middle rotation kind of guy before covid. There are enough rounds and enough bad teams to give him a look. 

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    11 hours ago, 4twinsJA said:

    You definitely picked some low hanging fruit in your choices. One comment about last year, many are down on FO for not protecting Baddoo, but Ober was a late add and definitely was a great add by FO. There are a few more prospects on the fence this year whether to protect or not, hopefully FO makes the correct moves.

    Interesting. Baddoo started hot, but the second half of the season he had a .715 OPS. It was still a good number for Detroit but had a Twins prospect done that would there be the love that Baddoo gets

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    Would be interesting to see Baddoo's numbers against everyone excluding the Twins.  Got a feeling it doesn't jump off the page.

    Would be real concerned the Twins would lose Enlow if he isn't protected.  With his high ceiling, expect he may be the 5th player added later next month.  He had his surgery early this year, right?  If so, he could be back pitching by mid-summer?

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    I am also concerned about Enlow.  A lot of potential there.  

    Vallimont is a high risk high reward player, don't expect the Twins to protect h, but he could be the next on the list of why didn't we protect him.

    There are others who need to be discussed in more depth, and I for one would like to see more of the AAAA types gone

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    7 hours ago, old nurse said:

    Enlow and Vallimont were the current FO's choices on players. They need to be in on a discussion of who to keep.  Even though Enlow might not pitch this season he might be worth the roster spot to some forlorn team. Vallimont was projectable as a middle rotation kind of guy before covid. There are enough rounds and enough bad teams to give him a look. 

    Vallimont is going to be a tough decision. If I've got a bad team I would grab him in the Rule 5 because his stuff plays right now and I can stash him in the bullpen for the season to see what he's got and keep working on his command. But is he worth a 40-man spot for the Twins when he isn't ready to participate at all for them? 

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