Now, to be completely fair, the Minnesota Twins farm system has plenty of talent. While the group may not be topping charts across the league as a whole, there’s a glut of future Major Leaguers within the ranks. The larger question here is to what extent are Minnesota’s prospects coveted by other organizations, and what can they realistically bring in return.
That question is not easy because so many of the Twins top prospects have recently graduated. Jose Mirnada is thriving at the Major League level. Alex Kirilloff looks healthy and competitive. Gilberto Celestino may be near his ceiling, but it’s clear he’s a capable big-league outfielder. Trevor Larnach is currently hurt, but has flashed being an impact bat. There shouldn’t be any desire to trade Royce Lewis, and Jhoan Duran may wind up as Minnesota’s best rookie. The top of the farm system is now being coached by Rocco Baldelli.
After recently updating my top 30 prospects following day one of the Major League Baseball Draft, each of Minnesota’s three picks has found their way into the group. I can’t imagine a scenario in which any of them are considered in a package right now, and that’s before considering the complications limiting any of them being moved.
At the top of the group, you find Austin Martin. Looking to increase his power potential, Martin has changed his swing and approach this season. What was once a high-average hitter is a guy posting a .691 OPS and no longer a shortstop. He’s far too young to suggest this is a bust, but the prospect luster around him when acquired in exchange for Jose Berrios has worn a bit.
Simeon Woods-Richardson has taken over for Jordan Balazovic as Minnesota’s top pitching prospect, but he’s currently on the injured list and his rebound has been just to the tune of 53 innings this season. Matt Canterino looks like he could be a dominant reliever, but there has to be a better string of health there. Speaking of Balazovic, he’s looked completely lost at Triple-A and couldn’t be dealt at a time where his value looks any lower.
Realistically speaking, the first two names that come to mind when constructing a trade package are Spencer Steer and Matt Wallner. The former is following a path similar to that of Miranda last season and has done incredibly well at both Double and Triple-A. Steer should absolutely be a name that the Twins start conversations with, but I don’t know that a recent addition to the back half of top 100 lists will be enough of a building block to land a big-name starter like Frankie Montas.
In Wallner, Minnesota has a better version of what Brent Rooker could have been. Wallner is a massive power bat that has made strides when it comes to controlling the strike zone. It will be interesting to see if he can keep that up while remaining at Triple-A, but there’s a saving grace in the outfield. Wallner isn’t exactly Max Kepler out there, but his massive arm provides plenty of assist opportunity. The Twins didn’t work him as a pitcher in pro ball, but that could be a fallback option for an acquiring team if need be.
Ultimately I think it’s evident that Minnesota has the pieces to acquire just about any amount of relief help they need. On the starting front though, especially the big-name talents, it’s hard to imagine a scenario in which prospects alone are enough to get a deal done.