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  • TD Top Twins Prospect Rankings (Post Draft and Trade Deadline): 16-20


    Cody Christie

    Baseball prospects can come in all shapes and sizes. In this part of the Twins top-30 prospects, the players range from 19 to 26 years old. Take a look at players that crack the back-end of the team’s top 20.

    Image courtesy of Seth Stohs, Twins Daily

    20. IF Spencer Steer (23 years old)
    Season Stats (A+/AA): 79 G, .255/.363/.497 (.860), 19 HR, 11 2B, 2 3B, 18.9 K%, 12.7 BB%
    Previous Rankings: 2021 Midseason: 16, 2021 Preseason: NA
    Steer was a 2019 third-round pick out of the University of Oregon. Steer’s drop in the rankings is more about the new players in the organization than about him having a poor performance. He started the year in Cedar Rapids, where he slashed .274/.409/.506 (915) in 45 games. The transition to Double-A has seen his OBP drop by 110 points, but he is still slugging .485. In his professional career, this is the first time he has been a year younger than the average age of the competition. At Cedar Rapids, he made nearly all his defensive starts at second base, and now he has been splitting time between second and third in Wichita.

    19. RHP Cole Sands (24 years old)
    Season Stats (AA): 48.1 IP (12 G), 2.79 ERA, 1.12 WHIP, 11.9 K/9, 3.9 BB/9
    Previous Rankings: 2021 Midseason: 13, 2021 Preseason: 15
    Sands immediately impacted the Twins organization after being taken in the fifth round back in 2018. While pitching at three different levels, he posted a sub-2.70 ERA with a 10.0 K/9 and 1.8 BB/9. Sands missed over a month earlier in the season, and the team has slowly been increasing his workload in recent weeks. Since coming off the IL (5 G), he has posted a 2.70 ERA while holding batters to a .190/.262/.379 slash line. His strikeout totals are up this year which is a positive since he faces older batters in over 60% of his plate appearances.

    18. OF Misael Urbina (19 years old)
    Season Stats (A): 73 G, .193/.295/.294 (.589), 4 HR, 7 2B, 4 3B, 18.6 K%, 11.4 BB%
    Previous Rankings: 2021 Midseason: 15, 2021 Preseason: 14
    Urbina was signed out of Venezuela during the 2018 International Signing Period for $2.75 million. As a 19-year old, he is making his stateside debut this season, and he has only faced younger pitchers in four out of his 323 plate appearances. Even facing older competition, he has shown an advanced eye at the plate and the ability to draw walks. Defensively, he has split time between center field and left field. Urbina has some of the best tools in the Twins system, and he is a player that should move up this list in the years to come.

    17. RHP Blayne Enlow (22 years old)
    Season Stats (A+): 14.2 IP (3 G), 1.84 ERA, 1.30 WHIP, 14.1 K/9, 3.7 BB/9
    Previous Rankings: 2021 Midseason: 11, 2021 Preseason: 10
    Enlow, a 2017 third-round pick, made quick work of High-A to start the season as he mowed down batters with career-high strikeout rate. Unfortunately, he was forced to undergo Tommy John surgery and will be out until the second half of 2022. Minnesota added pitching depth that will be ranked ahead of Enlow, but that doesn’t take anything away from his long-term potential.

    16. OF Brent Rooker (26 years old)
    Season Stats (AAA): 61 G, .239/.362/.546 (.908), 19 HR, 8 2B, 1 3B, 30.2 K%, 14.3 BB%
    Season Stats (MLB): 24 G, .168/.225/.358 (.583), 4 HR, 6 2B, 30.3 K%, 5.9 BB%
    Previous Rankings: 2021 Midseason: 14, 2021 Preseason: 12
    Rooker was the 35th overall pick by Minnesota back in the 2017 MLB Draft, and now he’s found himself in a unique spot with the Twins. He has little left to prove at Triple-A as he has posted an OPS north of .900 in 2019 and 2021. His power might be the best in the entire Twins system, but questions remain about how regularly he can make contact. Minnesota is also concerned about him being a defensive liability, but the team has been using him in both corner outfield spots since his call-up. Following the Nelson Cruz trade, Rooker should stick in the Twins lineup for the rest of the season, so that the club can evaluate him for the long term.


    Check back this week for the rest of the Twins post-draft and post-trade deadline top-30 rankings. Feel free to discuss this group of prospects and ask questions.

    PREVIOUS POSTS IN THIS SERIES
    -Prospects 21-25
    -Prospects 26-30

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    Interesting list of names we know from other postings.  Rooker not being in the top ten, his slash line in both AAA and MLB has me questioning his long term future with the club.  I hope he lights it up the rest of the year and then, of course, he will have to be dropped from the list altogether. 

    I was surprised to see Sands so low, I hope that means that the pitchers above him are really good.   Disappointing to see Enlow out for a year.  I hope Steer continues to develop into a good utility man in the majors.

    Nice report. 

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    1 hour ago, mikelink45 said:

    Interesting list of names we know from other postings.  Rooker not being in the top ten, his slash line in both AAA and MLB has me questioning his long term future with the club.  I hope he lights it up the rest of the year and then, of course, he will have to be dropped from the list altogether. 

    I was surprised to see Sands so low, I hope that means that the pitchers above him are really good.   Disappointing to see Enlow out for a year.  I hope Steer continues to develop into a good utility man in the majors.

    Nice report. 

     

     

    Rooker has some pop..but just has horrible pitch recognition..cant hit a fastball right down the gut and cant lay off sliders in the dirt or low and away. just dont see him ever being more than a .225 hitter and K-ing at a 35% + clip

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    Thanks for this report, Cody.  Must say I like this group much more so than yesterday's.

    What may be most interesting reading this is that both Enlow and Sands need to be added to the 40-man this year, or exposed to the Rule 5 draft.  The Twins are really going to be stretched finding spots for all the guys needing protection.  Do they risk someone like Enlow who is out with TJ surgery?  Could be an easy pick for some team as he could be put on the 60-day IL at the end of spring training.  Hopefully, they open lots of spots and enter spring training with a short 40-man roster cause seven or eight of the guys are further away than normal.

    Really like Urbina and believe he deserves a mulligan beginning in the Florida State League following a year in the DSL as a 17-year old two years ago and then the year off.  Expect he could be one of the most improved in the system next year at Cedar Rapids.

    Really liked Rooker's bat in his brief stay with the Twins last August and again when called up several weeks ago.  But he has cooled of late.  Can't tell if it is tough luck or he is overmatched as I can't see any of their games.

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    Really like what Steer has done this year.  Adding pretty consistent power to his game is big and his eye at the plate has been better than I thought it would be as well.  Looks like he might be having trouble with the breaking ball and offspeed stuff at the higher levels as his numbers have dropped off some.  Hopefully he adjusts and can be an option for the Twins as early as mid next year.

    I was a Sands doubter as a draft pick as his numbers did not scream MLB pitcher but he quickly changed my mind with a dominant first year.  He looks to be doing just as well this year but with some injury\soreness so didn't pitch as much early in the year.  Still he looks good as a starter.  I know Fangraphs thinks he might end up in the pen but he sure seems to have the pitches to start.

    I know.  I know he is young for the level but still have been a little disappointed in Urbina's numbers.  I thought he might have better contact skills and strike out less but A ball as a teenager is no easy task.  I guess I got hyped up about how well he seemed to be doing at the alt site in 2020.  I think he and Cavaceo will be better next year.

    I still think Enlow is going to be good to great but will need to wait at least two years to find out since he has TJ surgery.  He won't back until mid year at best and then will have to build up innings the next year.  So he looks a ways a way right now.  It stinks because he looked so dominant to start the year.

    Surprised Rooker is still on here but I will say he has looked better at the plate his second time around.  I know he hasn't been hitting much recently but he hasn't been striking out as much either so that is good.  He still seems to have trouble recognizing pitches and getting good swings on the breaking stuff but he still has a chance to be a good DH. He has a big bat but it looks like it is going to take time for his approach to mature enough to be valuable.

     

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    1 hour ago, beckmt said:

    I was surprised Rooker was this high, as I do not see a future for him here, too many of the same type of player either in the majors or above him in the order.  Twins will hopefully be able to bundle some of these players off, because we have a major log jam on the 40 man.  

    My prediction:

    They'll waive him. Detroit will pick him up. He will hit 45 HRs for them next year batting between Baddoo and Schoop.

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    7 minutes ago, PDX Twin said:

    My prediction:

    They'll waive him. Detroit will pick him up. He will hit 45 HRs for them next year batting between Baddoo and Schoop.

    The impending heat must be getting to you ....

    Imo, Rooker is a great AAAA player. If he had defensive value, it would be different, but he just doesn't have a spot on this roster looking term. He might elsewhere.

    I am intrigued by these pitchers.....

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    I see Rooker being left off of the 40 man roster in the offseason unless he shows a lot more at the plate in the last roughly 50 games. Frankly I think that's why he's playing so much because we need to make a decision on him v. the younger pitching on the 40 man. My guess is Rooker loses out and that another team is intrigued enough to pick him up. 

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    1 hour ago, Mike Sixel said:

    The impending heat must be getting to you ....

    Imo, Rooker is a great AAAA player. If he had defensive value, it would be different, but he just doesn't have a spot on this roster looking term. He might elsewhere.

    I am intrigued by these pitchers.....

    i think that's probably right on Rooker. I would not have ranked him this high; while his power is spectacular, his inability to make consistent contact (and he's not some young kid any longer) severely limits his ceiling. He looks like a worse version of Miguel Sano at the plate with less defensive utility. that's...not great. Maybe he'll prove me wrong. (I love being wrong like that)

    Sands is really interesting; the numbers look good but I'd be happier if he were handling a bigger workload. It doesn't matter much how great your stuff is if you can't stay on the field, but he's developing well and hopefully finishes the year strong.

    Urbina is tough to rank. The performance isn't there, but he's super young and it's his first year in professional ball in the US. The tools are good...will it translate? Talented but too early to tell.

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    19 minutes ago, DJL44 said:

    Rooker will be off this list if he gets 13 more at-bats. He's batting 2nd today so I'm guessing he's off the list by the end of this week.

    Given this, probably time to just pull him off the list.....I get it, he's still eligible, but not for long...

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    I'm probably most interested in Spencer Steer and Blayne Enlow here.

    Steer seems fairly comparable to Noah Miller in regard to not having a really standout talent like arm or speed. 90mph infield velocity probably gives him a borderline plus arm at shortstop. His top speed seems to play at SS/CF out of high school, but he wasn't getting a good jump at all.

    https://www.perfectgame.org/players/playerprofile.aspx?ID=355596

    His RF/9 in the minors at SS shows promise, but like all Twins IF prospects, the high error rate shows up again. The Twins have him playing 3B in AA instead of shortstop because the team has no plan or direction and doesn't understand the value of training, repetition and practice at fielding positions. His K rate initially skyrocketed at AA, but over his last 10 games, it's settled back down. Honestly, I'm probably higher on him now that I was. If he wasn't in the Twins' system, he'd probably be a legit SS prospect right now.

    Enlow has the potential of being a starting pitcher whereas I don't think Sands really does. That's really what it comes down to in my opinion there. Enlow is going to have a lot of ground to make up next year and very little time to do it.

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    1 hour ago, bean5302 said:

     

    Enlow has the potential of being a starting pitcher whereas I don't think Sands really does. That's really what it comes down to in my opinion there. Enlow is going to have a lot of ground to make up next year and very little time to do it.

    Yeah you could be right about Sands.  He might lack the durability factor a starter needs.  I still think his stuff could play as a starter but I agree with you that Enlow is the better bet to make it as a starter.  We will see what Twins think soon enough as he needs to be added to the 40 man or exposed to rule V.  If the Twins continue to have trouble with pen arms he would be a good candidate to promote IMO.

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