Jump to content
Twins Daily
  • Create Account
  • 2023 Twins Top 10 Prospect Rankings: Where Does Jose Salas Fit?


    Cody Christie

    The Twins added one of Miami's top prospects as part of the Luis Arraez trade. So, where does Jose Salas rank among the top Twins prospects?

    Image courtesy of Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

    Twins Video

    Many national prospect rankings have recently been released, with some debate at the top for the Twins. Royce Lewis and Brooks Lee are considered the team's best prospects, but their order differs depending on which list readers prefer. Emmanuel Rodriguez appears on multiple top 100 lists, so he is another name to watch in 2023. The Marlins included Jose Salas as part of the Luis Arraez trade, and this is where I'd place him in the team's top-10 list:

    10. Matt Wallner, OF
    Age: 25
    2022 Levels: AA, AAA, MLB

    Wallner is coming off his best professional season, which saw him hit .277/.412/.542 (.953) in the upper minors before making his big-league debut. He's in the same age range as Trevor Larnach and Alex Kirilloff, so it will be interesting to see how the organization utilizes these three young players. Wallner will likely start the year at Triple-A if everyone is healthy, but he should be one of the team's first call-ups in 2023. 

    9. Edouard Julien, INF
    Age: 23
    2022 Level: AA

    Julien was one of Minnesota's breakout prospects in 2023. He hit .300/.441/.490 (.931) with 19 doubles, three triples, and 17 home runs. The Twins sent him to the Arizona Fall League, and he continued to rake with a 1.248 OPS in 21 games. Minnesota added him to their 40-man roster, so he should debut in 2023. Julien moved higher on the organizational depth chart after the Twins traded Arraez.

    8. Jose Salas, INF
    Age: 19
    2022 Levels: A, A+

    The Marlins were aggressive with Salas throughout his professional career. Last year, he split time between Low- and High-A, and he was over three years younger than the average age of the competition in the Midwest League. In 109 games, he hit .250/.339/.384 (.723) with 20 doubles, four triples, and nine home runs. He is expected to add more to his frame, and his power numbers should increase. Some believe he can stick at shortstop, but he is comfortable playing multiple defensive positions. Salas should play most of his games in Cedar Rapids, but the team might want him to play in Fort Myers for the season's early months. He's a long way from Target Field, but he is still a prospect to watch in 2023.

    7. Louie Varland, SP 
    Age: 25
    2022 Levels: AA, AAA, MLB

    Varland has been named the team's minor league pitcher of the year in back-to-back seasons. That has yet to happen in the Twins organization since Jose Berrios was a top-100 prospect. In 24 appearances, he posted a 3.06 ERA with a 1.26 WHIP and 10.4 K/9. His strikeout totals dropped at the big-league level, but his sample size was limited to five starts. He projects to start the year in St. Paul's rotation, but he should pitch in important games for the Twins in 2023. 

    6. Marco Raya, SP
    Age: 20
    2022 Level: A

    Raya made his professional debut in 2022 as a 19-year-old in the Florida State League. Only 42 of his at-bats came against younger batters because he was three years younger than the average age of the competition at his level. In 19 appearances (65 1/3 innings), he posted a 3.05 ERA with a 1.07 WHIP and 10.5 K/9. Baseball Prospectus ranks Raya as baseball's 53 overall prospect, which is higher than any other national ranking. Minnesota can let Raya start the year back in Fort Myers, but most of his innings should be in Cedar Rapids. 

    5. Simeon Woods Richardson, SP
    Age: 22
    2022 Levels: AA, AA. MLB

    Woods Richardson bounced back nicely in 2022 after struggling through parts of the 2021 season. In 23 appearances (107 1/3 IP), he posted a 2.77 ERA with a 1.05 WHIP and 9.6 K/9. He has been significantly younger than the median age of the competition throughout his professional career. Minnesota's starting pitching depth will have Woods Richardson continuing to develop at Triple-A this season. His performance and the health of other players will dictate how long he stays in St. Paul.

    4. Connor Prielipp, LHP
    Age: 22
    2022 Levels: N/A

    The Twins took Prielipp with the 48th overall pick in the 2022 MLB Draft. He fell that far after undergoing Tommy John surgery in college, so he should be ready to make his professional debut in 2023. His fastball and slider are both MLB-ready pitches, and his changeup also projects to be above average. The Twins were confident enough in his pre-draft workouts to go over slot value to sign him. Minnesota will work him back slowly in 2023, but he has all the traits necessary to be an ace pitcher.

    3. Emmanuel Rodriguez, OF
    Age: 19
    2022 Level: A

    Rodriguez has a chance to be the most exciting prospect in the Twins farm system. Last year, he hit .272/.493/.552 (1.044) with five doubles, three triples, and nine home runs in 47 games. The only thing that slowed him down was a knee injury that ended his season in June. Many national prospect lists have taken notice of Rodriguez's performance as he is a consensus top-100 prospect. He has a chance to be a top-25 global prospect entering next season, especially if his power continues to develop

    2. Royce Lewis, SS/3B/OF
    Age: 23
    2022 Levels: AAA, MLB

    Lewis surprised many with how strongly he returned from ACL surgery during the 2022 campaign. The Twins sent him to Triple-A, and he hit .313/.405/.534 (.940) with 18 extra-base hits in 34 games. His big-league debut went nearly as well with a .867 OPS with four doubles and two home runs. Unfortunately, his season ended early after he tore his ACL running into the Target Field wall. Lewis should be ready by the middle of the season to help bolster the team's line-up. 

    1. Brooks Lee, SS
    Age: 21
    2022 Levels: Rookie, A+, AA

    Lee was considered the best college bat in the 2022 draft class, so the Twins were thrilled that he fell to them with the eighth overall pick. Two months following the draft, he played in the Double-A playoffs after combining for a .839 OPS at three different levels. Lee likely won't stick at shortstop when he reaches the majors, but the Twins hope Correa can fill that position for multiple years. Minnesota doesn't need to rush him in 2023; he can reach the big leagues in the second half.  

    The Twins Daily Top 20 Twins Prospect Rankings will be coming in early February with input from all of the site's minor league contributors. Who is ranked too high? Who is ranked too low? Should Austin Martin be in the top 10? Leave a COMMENT and start the discussion. 

    MORE FROM TWINS DAILY
    — Latest Twins coverage from our writers
    — Recent Twins discussion in our forums
    — Follow Twins Daily via Twitter, Facebook or email
    — Become a Twins Daily Caretaker

     Share


    User Feedback

    Recommended Comments



    Featured Comments

    For me he is really tough to slot.  I would have him anywhere from 4 to 8.  It is hard for me to compare pitchers to position players.  If you just skip pitchers I would have him at number 4 because I think he can be a solid defender, he has a good eye at the plate, can hit and hopefully hit for power.  He was a bit down with the bat at High A so it makes one wonder a bit about the hit tool but he is also only 19 and already at high A so that is a plus as well.

    If the bat breaks out he is a top 5 prospect for sure whether he sticks at short or not for me.  If the bat stalls then he drops.  Man he is big for 19 years old..  Happy to have a player with his upside to watch at High A, which will need all the good players they can get.

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Even though Lee is rated the 10th best SS prospect by MLB, he is rated the best hitting SS prospect. Lewis was mentioned as being just on the fringe of the top 10  SS prospects. Julian is #7 at 2B and rated the fastest riser from where he was in the rankings last year.  Miranda was mentioned at 3B as having graduated from the top 10 3B last year.  When you consider All World Carlos Correa is at SS and Polanco , a former All star SS is at 2B for the Twins, the future looks bright at the key IF positions. Kirilloff at 1B is at a relatively new position, but if his wrist heals, he should be terrific at 1B and hitting.  And the Reds MVP from last year, Farmer can play SS, 2B, and 3B capably, that is one good infield. The OF is the best defensive OF in the major leagues with a platinum glove, 2 gold gloves, and Kep, who should have won a gold glove manning the OF. I really don't see any great fielding prospects ranked by MLB, but  Rodriguez, Martin, Larnach and Wallner  are all very promising outfielders.  The Twins have no highly ranked prospects at catcher, I suggest the Twins trade with the Pirates who have 2 highly ranked catching prospects and I prefer Henry Davis for his strong arm, The Mets also have 2 top catching prospects, but I imagine Alverez is untouchable, since he is the number 1 prospect in the overall rankings. Parada may not be a strong enough defender, but he is a possibility to be traded by a team which has 2 top catching prospects.  The position players all look very promising for the Twins. Now ...about those young pitching prospects for the Twins....none are ranked vey high except Raya and he is several years away at best. I'll end on a positive note with 2 words. Jhoan Duran.

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Don’t sleep on Martin.

    Until we see another year or even two out of Salas, Martin > Salas at the moment. That could obviously change this year, but Martin’s strongish second half and raking in the AFL, gives his ranking a boost coming into this year.

    Once you’ve fallen, it’s hard to move back up, but Martin merits that type of consideration.. 

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    As much fun as a list like this is, a decent amount of the value some of them is going to provide will only come in the form of a trade. Don't fall in love, because we don't have room for all these guys to play here.  

    With that in mind, I'm all in on @tarheeltwinsfan plan of going and getting Vazquez' heir via trade. AZ and TOR swapped stud young players a few weeks ago to fill organizational needs and we should consider it as well. Some things are very hard to do, so not everyone does everything equally well. We are cranking out the middle infield prospects these days and so we are trading from that wealth to buy things we haven't been creating in-house, mostly pitching. But it's also been a long time since we drafted and developed a non-Mauer catcher that anyone else thought highly of.  I just checked: it was a 32 year gap between Jeffers leading the team in games caught in 2020 and Tim Laudner in 1988 with only Mauer in between. There is no indication that we're even trying to figure this out, so we may as well get shopping.   

    BTW, out of nine positions last year, the Twins featured starters  Polanco, Miranda, Gordon, Kepler, Arraez and Celestino coming up with the Twins and only Correa, Sanchez and Urshela debuting elsewhere. It was the same number in 2021 too, which is pretty darn good development and one more cool thing buried within  https://www.baseball-reference.com/teams/MIN/pos.shtml   

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    I would start with the fact that Salas is a top 100 prospect.  I would likely slot him behind our last top 100 prospect.  That would put him 4th in the top 10 rankings.  I suppose if you think Prielipp could be ranked higher.  But I won’t.  Salas is 4th on our list.  I wonder how that affects our farm systems ranking with another top 100 prospect. Are we now higher then 15 or even 12 now?

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    2 hours ago, Cris E said:

    As much fun as a list like this is, a decent amount of the value some of them is going to provide will only come in the form of a trade. Don't fall in love, because we don't have room for all these guys to play here.  

    With that in mind, I'm all in on @tarheeltwinsfan plan of going and getting Vazquez' heir via trade. AZ and TOR swapped stud young players a few weeks ago to fill organizational needs and we should consider it as well. Some things are very hard to do, so not everyone does everything equally well. We are cranking out the middle infield prospects these days and so we are trading from that wealth to buy things we haven't been creating in-house, mostly pitching. But it's also been a long time since we drafted and developed a non-Mauer catcher that anyone else thought highly of.  I just checked: it was a 32 year gap between Jeffers leading the team in games caught in 2020 and Tim Laudner in 1988 with only Mauer in between. There is no indication that we're even trying to figure this out, so we may as well get shopping.   

    BTW, out of nine positions last year, the Twins featured starters  Polanco, Miranda, Gordon, Kepler, Arraez and Celestino coming up with the Twins and only Correa, Sanchez and Urshela debuting elsewhere. It was the same number in 2021 too, which is pretty darn good development and one more cool thing buried within  https://www.baseball-reference.com/teams/MIN/pos.shtml   

    Really nice attachment showing the franchise position starters since the beginning. Brings back lots of memories. Back to when I first started loving baseball and the Washington Senators in 1954 visiting my grandparents in Washington. Eddie Yost (the "walking man"), Mickey Vernon, Wayne Terwilliger, Pete Runnels, on and on for 68 summers. Every year I get excited as spring training approaches. And 2 years out of 68, I got to celebrate my team being the world champion. But in all of the 68 years, I have been able to celebrate baseball., except the season of 68 when I was overseas in the army.  I'm ready for another season to begin. And hopefully some of you will able to be with me in Ft. Myers to see the Twins play the Tigers and the Orioles and the Dominican all stars. Play ball. 

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    11 minutes ago, Shaitan said:

    Is Lee the heir apparent when Polanco's contract ends, or is he more likely to move to 3B?

    The future of the Twins or at least how I see it is Correa moves over to 3B. Lee than takes over at SS. Edouard Julien takes 2B. Royce Lewis moves to the OF. Jose Miranda moves back to 1B. This  obviously only works if all the prospects pan out which is super unlikely but if they did I love this infield. 

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    I think Lee will be ready for MLB well before Correa is ready to move off SS so he may end up manning 3B for a couple years.  And honestly I expect him to slide in nicely there, so over the next 3-4 years I expect an infield of Lee, Correa, Polanco/Lewis/Julien and Miranda/Kirriloff. They should be good, and when the time comes to move Correa the parts may move in ways we wouldn't expect today. There may be another younger, better SS ready to go, someone like Salas, and then who knows what happens next. Don't get too far ahead, just let it unfold and enjoy the ride.

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    I received my Twins Prospect rankings from Prospects Live yesterday and this is how they ranked him. They are not kind to Wallner and Balazovic.

     

    1. Brooks Lee, SS - 55 OFP

    2. Royce Lewis, SS - 50 OFP

    3. Emmanuel Rodriguez, OF - 50 OFP

    4. Edouard Julien, 2B - 50 OFP

    5. Connor Prielipp, LHP - 50 OFP

    6. Louie Varland, RHP - 50 OFP

    7. Simeon Woods Richardson, RHP - 50 OFP

    8. Marco Raya, RHP - 50 OFP

    9. Jose Salas, SS - 50 OFP

    10. Austin Martin, SS - 45 OFP

    11. David Festa, RHP - 45 OFP

    12. Matt Canterino, RHP - 45 OFP

    13. Tanner Schobel, SS - 45 OFP

    14. Yasser Mercedes, OF - 45 OFP

    15. Misael Urbina, OF - 45 OFP

    16. Jose Rodriguez, OF - 45 OFP

    17. Noah Miller, SS - 45 OFP

    18. Jordan Balazovic, RHP - 45 OFP

    19. Alejandro Hidalgo, RHP - 45 OFP

    20. Matt Wallner, OF - 40 OFP

    21. Ronny Henriquez, RHP - 40 OFP

    22. Cole Sands, RHP - 40 OFP

    23. Danny De Andrade, SS/3B - 40 OFP

    24. Aaron Sabato, 1B - 40 OFP

    25. Michael Helman, UTIL - 40 OFP

    26. Blayne Enlow, RHP - 40 OFP

    27. Cory Lewis, RHP - 40 OFP

    28. Sean Mooney, RHP - 40 OFP

    29. Bryan Acuna, SS - 40 OFP

    30. Ben Ross, UTIL - 40 OFP

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    How many that get moved off SS, for whatever reason, whether young or older, ever make it back and stay there? I can't think of any. There are probably a few, and some act as a sub because of injury or suspension or whatever, but they never really return to man SS for the long haul.

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    14 hours ago, Cris E said:

    As much fun as a list like this is, a decent amount of the value some of them is going to provide will only come in the form of a trade. Don't fall in love, because we don't have room for all these guys to play here.  

     

    I can learn to love a good player received in trade too.

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    12 hours ago, WhenWillWeBeatNY said:

    The future of the Twins or at least how I see it is Correa moves over to 3B. Lee than takes over at SS. Edouard Julien takes 2B. Royce Lewis moves to the OF. Jose Miranda moves back to 1B. This  obviously only works if all the prospects pan out which is super unlikely but if they did I love this infield. 

    I don't think Correa is moving off SS in the next 3-4 years. It's going to be interesting to see how everyone fits in with Martin, Julien, Lee, and Lewis knocking on the door and the infield already potentially filled with MLB quality players. But that's a problem I want to have, and why I don't worry about Gallo only being on a one year deal, Kepler close to running his deal out, Polanco close to running his deal out, etc.

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    13 hours ago, WhenWillWeBeatNY said:

    Edouard Julien is ranked the 7th best 2nd baseman prospect by MLB.com so I think he should be higher. He hopefully will crack the top 100 prospect list as well. 

    I am sure you noted, as I did that only he and Lee made it on these lists.  That is a disappointment and might show that familiarity creates a home team bias. 

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    4 hours ago, Heistyman said:

    I received my Twins Prospect rankings from Prospects Live yesterday and this is how they ranked him. They are not kind to Wallner and Balazovic.

     

    1. Brooks Lee, SS - 55 OFP

    2. Royce Lewis, SS - 50 OFP

    3. Emmanuel Rodriguez, OF - 50 OFP

    4. Edouard Julien, 2B - 50 OFP

    5. Connor Prielipp, LHP - 50 OFP

    6. Louie Varland, RHP - 50 OFP

    7. Simeon Woods Richardson, RHP - 50 OFP

    8. Marco Raya, RHP - 50 OFP

    9. Jose Salas, SS - 50 OFP

    10. Austin Martin, SS - 45 OFP

    11. David Festa, RHP - 45 OFP

    12. Matt Canterino, RHP - 45 OFP

    13. Tanner Schobel, SS - 45 OFP

    14. Yasser Mercedes, OF - 45 OFP

    15. Misael Urbina, OF - 45 OFP

    16. Jose Rodriguez, OF - 45 OFP

    17. Noah Miller, SS - 45 OFP

    18. Jordan Balazovic, RHP - 45 OFP

    19. Alejandro Hidalgo, RHP - 45 OFP

    20. Matt Wallner, OF - 40 OFP

    21. Ronny Henriquez, RHP - 40 OFP

    22. Cole Sands, RHP - 40 OFP

    23. Danny De Andrade, SS/3B - 40 OFP

    24. Aaron Sabato, 1B - 40 OFP

    25. Michael Helman, UTIL - 40 OFP

    26. Blayne Enlow, RHP - 40 OFP

    27. Cory Lewis, RHP - 40 OFP

    28. Sean Mooney, RHP - 40 OFP

    29. Bryan Acuna, SS - 40 OFP

    30. Ben Ross, UTIL - 40 OFP

    Nor Sands, for that matter.

    If you are of the opinion, like that of many scouting reports, that Lee, Salas, and Martin will never play SS in the majors, then Tanner Schobel (overall #13 ?) is our second highest ranked SS prospect.  I admit I don’t know much about him - wasn’t he the substitute teacher in School of Rock?

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    17 hours ago, Brandon said:

    I would start with the fact that Salas is a top 100 prospect.  I would likely slot him behind our last top 100 prospect.  That would put him 4th in the top 10 rankings.  I suppose if you think Prielipp could be ranked higher.  But I won’t.  Salas is 4th on our list.  I wonder how that affects our farm systems ranking with another top 100 prospect. Are we now higher then 15 or even 12 now?

    I kind of agree with this. 

    I would move him to 6th, but that's just picking nits. 

    Future value being equal, I tend to rank the non-pitcher and proximity to the majors higher. That drops Raya and Prielipp down to 7 & 8. 

    Regardless, while the system is lacking high end prospects, it is deeply stocked with 50-55 FV players. 

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    11 minutes ago, Nashvilletwin said:

    Nor Sands, for that matter.

    If you are of the opinion, like that of many scouting reports, that Lee, Salas, and Martin will never play SS in the majors, then Tanner Schobel (overall #13 ?) is our second highest ranked SS prospect.  I admit I don’t know much about him - wasn’t he the substitute teacher in School of Rock?

    If you don't believe there's any chance Lee or Salas could play short then I have some bad news for you about Tanner Schoebel.

    There are a few SS prospects that are sure things, and then there is every other SS prospect where there are questions about whether they'll stick long term.

    Probably the only reason Lewis won't be primarily a shortstop for a few years is Carlos Correa.  I don't see any reason to write off Salas yet.  Honestly I'd put Miller and De Andrade ahead of Schobel right now anyway.  They've got SS prospects.

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    21 minutes ago, Nashvilletwin said:

    Nor Sands, for that matter.

    If you are of the opinion, like that of many scouting reports, that Lee, Salas, and Martin will never play SS in the majors, then Tanner Schobel (overall #13 ?) is our second highest ranked SS prospect.  I admit I don’t know much about him - wasn’t he the substitute teacher in School of Rock?

    I think Lee can play short at least early on.  He just projects as an average or slightly below average defender there even now so likely not a long term home there.  Salas is big,  If he gets much bigger he is going to be Miranda size.  I haven't seen him play much so hard to say if can stick but I tend to agree with scouts that his body projection is going to move him off there at some point.  Martin does not have the arm for short and makes way too many errors there. So Yeah I don't see it.

    Luckily we have Correa the next four years and some really interesting Shortstops at the lower levels in Miller, Ross, Pena, Ortiz and maybe Daniel as well as one of their top international picks in Chivilli.  So hopefully some guys who can stick at short down the road.

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    9 minutes ago, 2wins87 said:

    If you don't believe there's any chance Lee or Salas could play short then I have some bad news for you about Tanner Schoebel.

    There are a few SS prospects that are sure things, and then there is every other SS prospect where there are questions about whether they'll stick long term.

    Probably the only reason Lewis won't be primarily a shortstop for a few years is Carlos Correa.  I don't see any reason to write off Salas yet.  Honestly I'd put Miller and De Andrade ahead of Schobel right now anyway.  They've got SS prospects.

    Thanks.  

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    6 minutes ago, Dman said:

    I think Lee can play short at least early on.  He just projects as an average or slightly below average defender there even now so likely not a long term home there.  Salas is big,  If he gets much bigger he is going to be Miranda size.  I haven't seen him play much so hard to say if can stick but I tend to agree with scouts that his body projection is going to move him off there at some point.  Martin does not have the arm for short and makes way too many errors there. So Yeah I don't see it.

    Luckily we have Correa the next four years and some really interesting Shortstops at the lower levels in Miller, Ross, Pena, Ortiz and maybe Daniel as well as one of their top international picks in Chivilli.  So hopefully some guys who can stick at short down the road.

    Lewis still projects as a SS, no?

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites




    Join the conversation

    You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
    Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

    Guest
    Add a comment...

    ×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

      Only 75 emoji are allowed.

    ×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

    ×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

    ×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

    Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...