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  • Twins Daily 2022 Top Prospects: #2 Royce Lewis


    Ted Schwerzler

    Few players possess the raw talent of Twins prospect Royce Lewis. There are question marks after a long layoff, but there's no player in the system with a higher ceiling. Ready to announce his return in a big way, 2022 could be the best year yet for the former first overall pick.

    Age: 22 (DOB: 6/5/1999)
    2021 Stats: Did not play - ACL injury
    ETA: 2022
    2021 Ranking: 2nd

    National Top 100 Rankings
    BA: 82 | MLB: 17 | ATH: NR | BP: NR

    What’s To Like
    The same things that made Royce Lewis the 1st overall pick in 2017 are reasons to like him now. The athleticism is off the charts, and makeup has been something that will sell anyone. He’s still got a home at shortstop for now and will play up the middle somewhere regardless. His speed has always been among his greatest assets, and a recent interview suggests he’s gotten even faster.

    At the dish, there’s plenty to like about Lewis. He’s got the ability to be a plus hitter who makes plenty of contact. He began to find his power stroke in 2019 and has only gained muscle since then. If everything settles back into where he was the last time we saw him in game action during the Arizona Fall League, he’s going to be an absolute problem for the opposition.
     
    What’s Left To Work On
    Refinement is the name of the game for Lewis. He instituted a leg kick into his swing, and timing with it has seen him struggle to have full plate coverage. He’ll need to show that he can get the foot down and drive the baseball to all fields.

     

    There are still questions as to whether Lewis can stick at shortstop in the field. His arm strength shouldn’t be a problem, but instincts and reactions could take him off of the position. Minnesota remains committed to him in the role, and keeping him on the dirt would be a big win for all involved. If he can push away those doubts, that would go a long way to getting him to the highest level more quickly.
     
    What’s Next
    Lewis needs to see game action; it’s that simple. He hasn’t played in a professional game since 2019 and was out of action altogether last season. Getting back on the field and showing everyone where he’s at is a must. Depending on how that goes, he could be in line for very quick promotions. Double-A wasn’t a level he mastered at all, but the talent to be above the competition remains.

    Minnesota isn’t going to be too aggressive with a guy they need to work out, but his talent could force the organization’s hand. Lewis continues to bet on himself, and doubting him would seem to be a bad stance to take.

     
     
     
     

    Previous Rankings
    Honorable Mentions
    Prospects 16-20
    Prospects 11-15
    #10: Josh Winder, RHP
    #9: Chase Petty, RHP
    #8: Simeon Woods Richardson, RHP
    #7: Jhoan Duran, RHP
    #6: Matt Canterino, RHP
    #5: Joe Ryan, RHP
    #4: Jordan Balazovic, RHP
    #3: Jose Miranda, INF
    #2: Royce Lewis, SS
    #1: Coming tomorrow

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    Thanks Ted for a very good article. I like how you started that this could be his best year yet. I share your optimism, especially when there's report that he's even faster. This shows his determination to plow through all adversity. He not only has all the tools to be a MVP but also the grit and baseball savvy.

    Plus his great desire to be a Twin, this shows his loyality to the Twins and not to make the big $. I haven't been as excited about a prospect since Buxton and it may even exceed that. I don't care what other polls say, he's #1 in my book. Whatever problem he faces wether if it's his hitting, fielding or health, he'll get ontop of it

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    Surprised to see Lewis at #2, meaning Martin is #1.  The games I saw Martin play in Wichita late last summer didn't impress me all that much.  Granted, one couldn't see much of his defense and most of his hits were singles.  But to move him higher than Lewis is a surprise, heck more than a surprise, shocking.

    The last time we saw Lewis on the field he was the AFL MVP.  The reports I saw out of St. Paul in 2020 were that he was doing very well.  To me, that offsets the so-so results of his 2019 season and he remains #1 in my book.

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    Gordon will be the starting SS this year, for a month-month and half, then it will be Lewis time for the foreseeable future at SS.  This guy is good and he will hold SS for a while.  I am so excited for him to finally play here in Minnesota.   

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    Start him at SS at AA and see what happens. I have personally have no expectation of seeing him in MN this year, under the old MLB contract maybe late September, under a new one maybe depending on how service time works. As a 20 year old in A+ and AA he was not good with the bat at all,  The Fall league was exact opposite, so I want to see his bat be closer to fall league for an extended time. IMO this is kind of a make or break year for him, if he hits like he did in 2019, he will fall into the Nick Gordon prospect territory and the Twins will have to decide if he is worth a 40 man spot. If he hits like he did in the fall league, they are going to have figure out a spot for him next year on the Twins, which is a good problem to have.

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    Good summary, Ted.  It seems like we have been talking about this kid forever.  Let's hope the injuries are behind him and he has found his swing.  I suspect the Twins will let him get at least half a season of at bats in the minors this summer before even considering moving him to the bigs.  If he tears up the league, they might promote him if they trade someone away at the deadline, there is an injury, or somebody on the major league roster really underperforms.  But, as he really hasn't had any sustained reps at shortstop for a couple of years, I think they will give him a long look at short in the minors to see whether he really can do the job before moving him up.  Big year for him.  

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    1 hour ago, roger said:

    Surprised to see Lewis at #2, meaning Martin is #1.  The games I saw Martin play in Wichita late last summer didn't impress me all that much.  Granted, one couldn't see much of his defense and most of his hits were singles.  But to move him higher than Lewis is a surprise, heck more than a surprise, shocking.

    The last time we saw Lewis on the field he was the AFL MVP.  The reports I saw out of St. Paul in 2020 were that he was doing very well.  To me, that offsets the so-so results of his 2019 season and he remains #1 in my book.

    Excellent post. I would give a slight nod to Martin only because of the injury to Lewis.  As it was a serious injury and we haven't seen him play for a couple of years, I am a bit hesitant to put him first.  If it wasn't for that, I would have him number 1 for sure.  From everything I have read, Martin focused on making contact over driving the ball which would explain his .414 OBP.  You must have seen the Tulsa series in late August.  He as like 0 for 12 for 3 games.  But he did follow it up with a 6 for 9 and 2 homeruns the following two games.  When he focuses on contact, he looks like another Arraez.  When he drives the ball, he looks like a younger Polanco.  It will be interesting to see if the Twins can get him to work on driving the ball more.  But, I agree with you that if Lewis is healthy he could be real special.  Hopefully, they both reach their potential.

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    Nothing would make us TDers happier than to see Royce pencilled in as the long-term starting SS beginning sometime in ‘23 (probably the best case scenario).

    Having said that, if Royce doesn’t stick at SS and Miranda is our everyday 3B, I wouldn’t be disappointed if Royce roamed RF next to Buxton for many years.

    I get it - if Royce can truly be an average to above average defensive SS with a decent bat to go along with it, then that’s his spot.

    But if he can’t, and I know I’m in the minority on the TD, I salivate about the combination of speed/range, arm strength, power, OBP, and manageable cost that could come from an outfield of Martin, Buxton and Lewis. 
     

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    Lewis' ability to stick at shortstop depends on his ability to stop making errors instead of outs. His arm has been questioned somewhat due to a slower than optimal release, but the Twins and Lewis were said to have worked a lot on that during 2020's off site.

    I think Lewis will either quickly silence the doubters or he'll fall out of the top 20 Twins prospects this year. I doubt there's much middle ground to be honest. Let's hope he tears it up!

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    26 minutes ago, Nashvilletwin said:

    Nothing would make us TDers happier than to see Royce pencilled in as the long-term starting SS beginning sometime in ‘23 (probably the best case scenario).

    Having said that, if Royce doesn’t stick at SS and Miranda is our everyday 3B, I wouldn’t be disappointed if Royce roamed RF next to Buxton for many years.

    I get it - if Royce can truly be an average to above average defensive SS with a decent bat to go along with it, then that’s his spot.

    But if he can’t, and I know I’m in the minority on the TD, I salivate about the combination of speed/range, arm strength, power, OBP, and manageable cost that could come from an outfield of Martin, Buxton and Lewis. 
     

    I'm definitely in the minority, but my preferred setup is a Martin-Buxton-Lewis OF over Lewis playing SS. SS is certainly still important, but hitters aren't going away from trying to lift the ball and get extra base hits anytime soon. That OF would likely be the best defensively in baseball and be able to take away a number of the hits most players are looking for. I'd prefer the Twins sign a long-term SS and move both Martin and Lewis to the OF now. Lewis would also be the perfect Buxton injury replacement if (when?) his bat becomes what we all hope (expect?).

    As for when we see Lewis in the majors I know there's people who think it's best, or at least likely, that he stays in the minors for much, if not all, of 2022. I think that's a disaster situation, especially if they go with a stopgap SS. If they sign a 1 year SS and Lewis isn't ready to spend legit time in the majors in 2022 they're in the same awful situation going into 2023. It's why I'm so strong on the sign Story bandwagon. Quit messing around with the SS position and take a big swing on Story. Let Martin and Lewis just be big time athletes in the OF with Buxton and let's go. Now if Lewis was looking like a legit SS at the alternate site and had a breakthrough defensively to where the Twins have no doubt he's a ML SS defensively maybe things are different, but I find that unlikely and would prefer they just get a guy they know can play the spot like Story.

    2023 opening day IF of Miranda, Story, Polanco, and Kirilloff. 2023 opening day OF of Martin, Buxton, Lewis. Let's play ball.

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    1 hour ago, RJA said:

    Excellent post. I would give a slight nod to Martin only because of the injury to Lewis.  As it was a serious injury and we haven't seen him play for a couple of years, I am a bit hesitant to put him first.  If it wasn't for that, I would have him number 1 for sure.  From everything I have read, Martin focused on making contact over driving the ball which would explain his .414 OBP.  You must have seen the Tulsa series in late August.  He as like 0 for 12 for 3 games.  But he did follow it up with a 6 for 9 and 2 homeruns the following two games.  When he focuses on contact, he looks like another Arraez.  When he drives the ball, he looks like a younger Polanco.  It will be interesting to see if the Twins can get him to work on driving the ball more.  But, I agree with you that if Lewis is healthy he could be real special.  Hopefully, they both reach their potential.

    Didn't see them live, which is why it was difficult to see a lot of his defense on MiLBtv.  Was also in the outfield most of the games I saw, thus, you don't see very much as there were virtually no replays.

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    It's going to be really interesting how Lewis does this year. How will the knee hold up in field? (I'm not worried about his straight-line speed, but an injury like that can do more to his lateral movement) How well can he really hit?

    I also don't think that you reserve SS for Royce Lewis for 2023; if he's ready and shows it this year, great, but...Trevor Story is already an excellent defender at SS and has proven he can hit MLB pitching. A player being "blocked' is a problem worth having and can get resolved quite easily; injury often sorts it out and if not then trades are easy to make when you have clear excess at a position.

    I love Lewis' attitude and tools. I think his work ethic and make-up will help him translate those to results on the field, but he needs games. more than anyone he needs games. not surprised to see him drop to #2; he hasn't played and is coming off a significant injury. There's a case to drop him lower, and I say that as someone who truly believes in his ability.

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    This ranking all depends on his ability to stick at SS as a league average defender or better. If he does, he's probably deserving of #1. If not, he probably belongs in the 7-10 range. 

    While his position is still up in the air, the excitement level at getting to watch this kid play again is not. 

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     I really want Lewis to succeed.  I would love him to be the SS of the future. I am pulling for him more than any other minor leaguer.  But, my position is for the team to "TRY" to win the WS "every year".  That is the point of the game.  Along those lines, I think the Twins should sign Story, sign Rodon, and trade for a couple more SP.  That gives us the best chance to win in 2022.  After the season, re-evaluate.  My dream team for 2024 would be an infield of Kirilloff, Polanco, Story, Miranda.  OF of Martin, Buxton, Lewis,  C Jeffers/Rortvedt, utility Gordon, Larnach, Arraez.  But, no matter where Lewis ends up playing,  I want him to succeed and as a Twin.  He will be my new favorite player as soon as he makes the squad and for as long as he succeeds.  I am a big fan.  By the way, thanks to all the TD contributors and commenters.  Whether I agree or not, I love the comradery of this group. 

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    7 hours ago, chpettit19 said:

    I'm definitely in the minority, but my preferred setup is a Martin-Buxton-Lewis OF over Lewis playing SS. SS is certainly still important, but hitters aren't going away from trying to lift the ball and get extra base hits anytime soon. That OF would likely be the best defensively in baseball and be able to take away a number of the hits most players are looking for. I'd prefer the Twins sign a long-term SS and move both Martin and Lewis to the OF now. Lewis would also be the perfect Buxton injury replacement if (when?) his bat becomes what we all hope (expect?).

    As for when we see Lewis in the majors I know there's people who think it's best, or at least likely, that he stays in the minors for much, if not all, of 2022. I think that's a disaster situation, especially if they go with a stopgap SS. If they sign a 1 year SS and Lewis isn't ready to spend legit time in the majors in 2022 they're in the same awful situation going into 2023. It's why I'm so strong on the sign Story bandwagon. Quit messing around with the SS position and take a big swing on Story. Let Martin and Lewis just be big time athletes in the OF with Buxton and let's go. Now if Lewis was looking like a legit SS at the alternate site and had a breakthrough defensively to where the Twins have no doubt he's a ML SS defensively maybe things are different, but I find that unlikely and would prefer they just get a guy they know can play the spot like Story.

    2023 opening day IF of Miranda, Story, Polanco, and Kirilloff. 2023 opening day OF of Martin, Buxton, Lewis. Let's play ball.

    Outstanding post.  If that is our starting lineup in ‘03 - with a combo of Garver/Jeffers/Rortvedt behind the dish - the window should be open and getting better over the next several years. Btw, think about the $’s committed to that lineup; plenty of cash to add additional talent and go all in. 

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    1 hour ago, Heiny said:

     I really want Lewis to succeed.  I would love him to be the SS of the future. I am pulling for him more than any other minor leaguer.  But, my position is for the team to "TRY" to win the WS "every year".  That is the point of the game.  Along those lines, I think the Twins should sign Story, sign Rodon, and trade for a couple more SP.  That gives us the best chance to win in 2022.  After the season, re-evaluate.  My dream team for 2024 would be an infield of Kirilloff, Polanco, Story, Miranda.  OF of Martin, Buxton, Lewis,  C Jeffers/Rortvedt, utility Gordon, Larnach, Arraez.  But, no matter where Lewis ends up playing,  I want him to succeed and as a Twin.  He will be my new favorite player as soon as he makes the squad and for as long as he succeeds.  I am a big fan.  By the way, thanks to all the TD contributors and commenters.  Whether I agree or not, I love the comradery of this group. 

    You nailed the dream lineup. 

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    19 hours ago, chpettit19 said:

    2023 opening day IF of Miranda, Story, Polanco, and Kirilloff. 2023 opening day OF of Martin, Buxton, Lewis. Let's play ball.

    You are either on to something or on something.

    But any chance of that being the the lineup on opening day 23, we are going to need to see Miranda (who is the mostly likely) Lewis and Martin playing those positions in the majors regularly this year to prove their ready. As of today  one of them hasn't played in two years and the other isn't on the 40 man. And with the all the pitching questions, I don't see them jacking around much with the 40 man on the offensive side unless they have to. (Which IMO means Martin in the minors all this year, and Lewis if capable getting a call at the end of the year.)

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    Anybody worried about how the ACL will effect Lewis' speed/athleticism needs to watch a highlight of Dalvin Cook or AP pulling away from defenders. Not going to be an issue. The issue with Lewis, besides besides his annoying propensity to refer to himself in the 3rd person, is his leg kick. That would be why you would rank Martin ahead of him. Lewis' leg kick was as flamboyant as his personality. He has much to prove at the plate.

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    1 hour ago, TwinsDr2021 said:

    You are either on to something or on something.

    But any chance of that being the the lineup on opening day 23, we are going to need to see Miranda (who is the mostly likely) Lewis and Martin playing those positions in the majors regularly this year to prove their ready. As of today  one of them hasn't played in two years and the other isn't on the 40 man. And with the all the pitching questions, I don't see them jacking around much with the 40 man on the offensive side unless they have to. (Which IMO means Martin in the minors all this year, and Lewis if capable getting a call at the end of the year.)

    I'm outside the norm on my expectations for both Lewis and Martin this year for sure.

    Miranda seems to clearly be the first guy they'll call up for any injury or poor performance at the major league level. No concern at all about him getting major league ABs this year.

    I expect Lewis to be ready almost immediately. I keep calling him this year's Baddoo, but in a Twins uniform. If they don't call Lewis up until the end of the year I'd consider this season a complete waste (assuming they're not competing like very few people think they will) and either Lewis is no longer a "real prospect" or the FO should be fired for mismanaging him/the roster. If they have to go into 2023 with huge questions on Lewis still this season would be a complete failure (again, unless they're making the playoffs). You can't hit next offseason with the exact same questions you hit this offseason with. He's either up for half the year or he's taking the Gordon route as a prospect. I think he's going to mash in whatever ST we get and continue from there in AA to start then the door is wide open in the Twins OF (or maybe SS?) for him.

    Behind Torkelson, Martin was my favorite hitter in the 2020 draft and I think he could hold his own against major league pitching today. My hope is the Twins development team got in his ear at the end of the year and gave him plans to revert the swing changes he'd made after his injury and get back to showing at least the same amount of pop he did in college. He can already get the bat to the ball better than most major leaguers and has a great eye. His only questions are defensive position and if he'll make the swing adjustments to get to more power. I expect him to be ready for the majors by June or July. And at that point I'm in the same boat as I am with Lewis in that you get him into the Twins lineup during a season you're likely not contending so you go into 2023 with basically no questions about your position players (beyond SS if Lewis isn't the answer and they don't sign or trade for a long-term guy).

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    8 minutes ago, chpettit19 said:

    I'm outside the norm on my expectations for both Lewis and Martin this year for sure.

    Love your optimism, I hope the same for Lewis and Martin, I am just trying to be more realistic. They Twins have so many questions marks on the pitching side, and with Rooker, Larnach, Gordon, Celestino, Jeffers and to some extent AK and Sano. It seems that just getting Lewis on the field and comfortable with his injury is the most important thing, but I do agree if his bat is closer to his minor league history than 2019 league, he will fall into Gordon territory and that will make the FO look bad, but people will excuse that away (not me or the sounds of it you) with the COVID season and his injury, and they will say he is still young (which he is), With Martin not being on the 40 I think the Twins will ask him to do what you said and try to get some of that pop back, and it might cause some short term regression, but long term gain and if they aren't forced by injury or a possible trade to bring him up they won't. I think this year will be used to evaluate AK in LF and 1B, where Miranda's plays, see what they have in Rooker and Laranch, Celestino, and Sano. Lets say AK looks like the future at 1B, Mirand's bat is starter worthy, and one of the outfielders prove they are big league worthy. Next year opens all sorts of possibilities (also assuming the pitching prospects get figured out). They could trade all or some of Kepler, Sano, Donaldson, Arraez. Still have AK(1B), Polanco(2b), SS?, Miranda (3B), Buxton (CF), RF to the hitter that stepped up, and they could put Martin in LF (it isn't horrible starting 1 rookie), Lewis could be the new Arraez. But they have to figure out where these players on the edge of the 40 man fit in, because if they start adding the Martin's of the world to the 40 man, they will have to cut or trade guys they never gave a chance.

    Which is why last September Rooker, Larnach, Celestino and any healthy pitcher on the 40 should have been brought up, and guys like Gant should have been gone.

     

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    10 minutes ago, TwinsDr2021 said:

    Love your optimism, I hope the same for Lewis and Martin, I am just trying to be more realistic. They Twins have so many questions marks on the pitching side, and with Rooker, Larnach, Gordon, Celestino, Jeffers and to some extent AK and Sano. It seems that just getting Lewis on the field and comfortable with his injury is the most important thing, but I do agree if his bat is closer to his minor league history than 2019 league, he will fall into Gordon territory and that will make the FO look bad, but people will excuse that away (not me or the sounds of it you) with the COVID season and his injury, and they will say he is still young (which he is), With Martin not being on the 40 I think the Twins will ask him to do what you said and try to get some of that pop back, and it might cause some short term regression, but long term gain and if they aren't forced by injury or a possible trade to bring him up they won't. I think this year will be used to evaluate AK in LF and 1B, where Miranda's plays, see what they have in Rooker and Laranch, Celestino, and Sano. Lets say AK looks like the future at 1B, Mirand's bat is starter worthy, and one of the outfielders prove they are big league worthy. Next year opens all sorts of possibilities (also assuming the pitching prospects get figured out). They could trade all or some of Kepler, Sano, Donaldson, Arraez. Still have AK(1B), Polanco(2b), SS?, Miranda (3B), Buxton (CF), RF to the hitter that stepped up, and they could put Martin in LF (it isn't horrible starting 1 rookie), Lewis could be the new Arraez. But they have to figure out where these players on the edge of the 40 man fit in, because if they start adding the Martin's of the world to the 40 man, they will have to cut or trade guys they never gave a chance.

    Which is why last September Rooker, Larnach, Celestino and any healthy pitcher on the 40 should have been brought up, and guys like Gant should have been gone.

     

    Let me have my lockout dreams! Haha, I don't really disagree with anything in there (other than Larnach was hurt at the end of the year so made sense he wasn't up).

    I don't see any of Rooker, Larnach, Gordon, Celestino, or Jeffers as possible stars. I see Martin and Lewis as possible stars so I'd much rather get them established as regulars going into 2023 so they can then work on becoming stars. I don't believe in Rooker at all, but would give him the first half of 2022 to prove me wrong. After that I'm fine DFAing him for Martin. I think Larnach will be a legit MLB hitter, but not a star. And if he does become a star with the bat he's the primary DH moving forward if they all reach their ceilings. Celestino has 4th OFer written all over him. If he exceeds that, cool, but I wouldn't worry about his ABs at the expense of possible stars.

    Basically I see it as if Martin and/or Lewis are destroying AA or AAA I get them to the majors and let them work out the kinks this year with the expectation of them being average to above average regulars next year. I don't want to slow their ascension because of guys I don't think have the chance to be above average regulars. I'm not giving Rooker an extra 100 ABs in the majors to work out the struggles if Martin or Lewis are ready.

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    On 2/24/2022 at 6:17 AM, roger said:

    Surprised to see Lewis at #2, meaning Martin is #1.  The games I saw Martin play in Wichita late last summer didn't impress me all that much.  Granted, one couldn't see much of his defense and most of his hits were singles.  But to move him higher than Lewis is a surprise, heck more than a surprise, shocking.

    The last time we saw Lewis on the field he was the AFL MVP.  The reports I saw out of St. Paul in 2020 were that he was doing very well.  To me, that offsets the so-so results of his 2019 season and he remains #1 in my book.

    There's virtually no good pitching in the AFL. Lewis hatd done very little at the plate at a high level. He's got great athleticism, but anyone that is sure he'll hit is basing that off hope more than data. I think he hadt a shot to be great, but I can't ignore the downside risk when thinking about his future.  

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    Busy 48hrs so late to this OP. A lot of very interesting posts made and just not enough time to address each one directly as I might prefer, so I'm going to make a couple bullet point comments while leaving Martin out of the conversation for what should be obvious reasons.

    1] I think AK is going to be very good. I can't and won't try to explain his poor 2021 ST. But he looked downright dangerous when he was brought back up. I think he's just fine in the OF, though probably only average. TODAY, he might be the Twins LF even though 1B is probably his destination.  Not because he's a poor OF, but because he just looks so fluid and natural at 1B. I HATE making comparisons to established players, but I think he will be "Morneau-like" as a hitter and defender.

    2] I think Larnach is being under-sold due to his poor performance after his initial introduction. He wasn't quite ready enough, or polished enough, to stick. Tom did a great comparison recently that in their first 50 games in 2021, Larnach actually was as good or better than AK. He probably has the better arm. He won't be Kepler defensively in RF, but will probably be as good or better bat with as good or close to arm. Being rushed and needing a re-set after a great initial audition shouldn't diminish his potential.

    BTW, a lot of what I just stated about Larnach also applies, in slightly different ways, to Jeffers, Rorvedt and Celestino. Rooker....he has opportunity and now he needs to prove it.

    NOW, on to Lewis. 

    Defense: I have NOT watched him daily. Not sure how many of us have. He has the athleticism, speed, quickness, range, and arm strength to make all the plays. I've seen enough hilights and ST games here and there to witness he has the ability. So if the only real problem is just making sure he can make the "routine" plays, then I'm not that worried. Routine plays come from experience, work, and even coaching. It comes down to positioning and basic fundamentals. There is also a mental aspect that means you have to engaged each play. I doubt anyone doesn't believe in Lewis's work ethic and dedication. So if routine plays are a concern, they shouldn't be. BUT, you only get better the more you play!

    Further, just as a side note, if you've ever taken time to examine the milb and early career defensive numbers of past great and established ML SS...and 3B...you would see a propensity of errors early in said careers with little exception. 

    Offense: Lewis has inate power and speed. He seems to have "bat" ability, or has at least flashed it. In 2019 he was working through an injury and I'm sorry, but I can't recall right now what it was. A wrist? The FO saw enough, believed enough, that they promoted him to AA where his offensive numbers were nearly identical, though not great.

    Seemingly fully healthy, he was sent to the AFL but was forced to play various spots besides SS. All he did was hit like crazy and earn MVP. I read where someone stated the AFL doesn't have good pitching. I'd sure like to see proof of that as the AFL rosters have always been considered A+ and AA equivalence prospect and milb wise.

    We honestly, unfortunately, have NO IDEA, how good Lewis looked in 2020 at the alternate site. We hear good to great reports. But is that defense, offense, BOTH? As fans, we just don't know. But at least he was playing a little and being coached. At least he didn't lose 2020 totally. 

    But then 2021 happened. And it STINKS!

    He is the most exciting and talented player the Twins have drafted since Buxton. I BELIEVE in the kid and his talent and his future. What I don't believe in...as a cautionary person...is that he's some kind of bust if he isn't ready mid 2022. LET HIM PLAY. I would start him out at Wichita and play him daily and promote him to AAA as soon as he looks ready. And I would be extatic if he was ready late in 2022 or ready to compete in 2023. 

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    I really hope Lewis succeeds, but I think the odds are now stacked pretty heavily against him. He hasn't played in 2-something years, and his offensive output was not impressive when he had regular playing time. His swing mechanics were a complete mess before the pandemic/injury. Hopefully he's fixed the leg kick, but we won't get a sense of that until the lockout is over. We also don't know if he can run anymore. I'm guessing we shouldn't expect a 65-70 run tool when he comes back. Again, hope I'm wrong and he's our shortstop for 15 years.

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    3 hours ago, prouster said:

    I really hope Lewis succeeds, but I think the odds are now stacked pretty heavily against him. He hasn't played in 2-something years, and his offensive output was not impressive when he had regular playing time. His swing mechanics were a complete mess before the pandemic/injury. Hopefully he's fixed the leg kick, but we won't get a sense of that until the lockout is over. We also don't know if he can run anymore. I'm guessing we shouldn't expect a 65-70 run tool when he comes back. Again, hope I'm wrong and he's our shortstop for 15 years.

    Literally the most recent on-field data we have on him is being MVP of the 2019 Fall League, including MVP of the all-star game.  It's small sample, but I don't think swing mechanics could be a complete mess and still accomplish that.   Recovery from the injury to the knee is of course the biggest "known unknown" - but does that truly stack everything against him?

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    On 2/26/2022 at 5:11 PM, ashbury said:

    Literally the most recent on-field data we have on him is being MVP of the 2019 Fall League, including MVP of the all-star game.  It's small sample, but I don't think swing mechanics could be a complete mess and still accomplish that.   Recovery from the injury to the knee is of course the biggest "known unknown" - but does that truly stack everything against him?

    True, but his AA season in 2019 wasn't all that impressive. I just think he has a long way to go in order to reach his potential, and there are some pretty big unanswered questions that aren't helped by the lockout.

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