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  • Twins Sign Former Top Prospect Derek Fisher, Potential Fourth Outfielder


    Lucas Seehafer PT

    The Minnesota Twins once again reached into the barrel that is minor-league free agency on Thursday afternoon, signing former top outfield prospect Derek Fisher to a deal, according to KSTP’s Darren Wolfson. Although he has failed to live up to lofty expectations, Fisher is a potentially good signing who improves the outfield depth within the farm system at worst and could slot in as an occasional fourth outfielder when needed.

    Image courtesy of Mark J. Rebilas, USA TODAY

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    Derek Fisher was selected by the Houston Astros with the 37th overall pick during the 2014 MLB Draft out of the University of Virginia. He quickly ascended through the Astros’ farm system — he topped out as the team’s fourth-best prospect according to MLB.com in 2017 — reaching Triple-A in 2016 and eventually the majors the following summer, on the back of strong power numbers. The lefthanded slugger hit 16 home runs in 84 games at High-A in 2015, 21 across 129 games at Double-A and Triple-A in 2016, and 26 in 137 Triple-A and MLB games in 2017. 

    Fisher bounced between the majors and minors in 2018 and 2019 before being traded to the Toronto Blue Jays at the deadline in exchange for RHP Aaron Sanchez, OF Cal Stevenson, and RHP Joe Biagini. He battled a couple of minor leg injuries during the 2020 season which limited him to 16 games and zapped him of his power. 

    He was then traded to the Milwaukee Brewers during the offseason for a player to be named later and cash. Once again, he was bitten by the injury bug — this time a significant hamstring strain — which allowed him to appear in only four games for the Brewers and 25 for the Triple-A Nashville Sounds.

    Fisher’s various leg injuries and increasing age, he’ll be 29 next August, have largely robbed him of his once above-average speed. Upon making his debut in 2017, Fisher ranked in the 96th percentile in sprint speed, which helped him rack up 111 stolen bases during his minor-league career. However, during limited action this past season, his sprint speed had dropped precipitously to the 37th percentile. 

    Unlike many left-handed batters these days, Fisher is not a dead-pull hitter. He tends to spray the ball all over the field throughout his major league career, with the majority of his batted balls going back up the middle (41.1%). 

    What has kept Fisher from sticking in the majors is his propensity to strike out. He has done so 165 times in 466 MLB plate appearances, which equates to a whopping 35.5% K-rate. He possesses neither the power nor the defense to make up for his greatest weakness.

    In many respects, Fisher profiles similarly to that of Jake Cave, but with perhaps more power potential. He’s a fourth outfielder-type at best who could slot in at any spot, though he’s probably best in one of the corners. Odds are that he won’t play a significant role on the Twins next season, but could directly slide into Cave’s spot if he leaves the team and/or they don’t believe that someone like Gilberto Celestino is quite ready for the role.

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    The Twins and their of sick bay.  It doesn’t matter if you waste money at a rate $1m times 25 = $25m or waste money at a rate of $5m times 5 = $25m or $25m times 1 = $25m all for the same set time. In the end it’s the production that counts.

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    There is another side to signings like this, it isn't all about the Twins.

    Players like this are more likely to spend the entire year in St. Paul.  Getting the best players they can to supplement the prospects is a big plus for the Saints.  Unrelated to future help for the Twins, it is important to put the best team they can on the field at CHS Field.  Heck, it may be the only baseball we see next year.

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    He will fit right in with many of our other players who struggle making consistent contact with the ball both at the plate and in the field.    I was actually hoping for the opposite - a RH hitting outfielder who can make contact, hit lefties and can field so they could mix and match with Kepler.    Someone like the first-half season Refsnyder.    

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    So what is he Whiffing on?  Can it be fixed with the right hitting instruction?

    Curveballs? Sliders,? Change-ups? Fishing after low & outside? Can't lay off High Heat?

    Unless you have Larnach penciled in in LF, or Kirilloff; who are you trotting out there ?  At the very least he's a warm body for AAA.

     

     

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    By the way, what was the FO of the starting pitching poor Twins doing when Al Leiter Jr signed with the Cubs??

    His work in Triple-A was particularly sharp, as he totaled 89 innings of 3.34 ERA ball with an outstanding 30.5% strikeout rate, a strong 6.6% walk rate and an above-average 46.9% ground-ball rate through 17 appearances (15 starts). Those numbers fall in line with Leiter’s prior success in Triple-A, where he now has a career 3.60 ERA, 29.1% strikeout rate and 6.9% walk rate in 147 1/3 innings. (From MLB Trade Rumors)

     

     

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    1 hour ago, Jacksson said:

    By the way, what was the FO of the starting pitching poor Twins doing when Al Leiter Jr signed with the Cubs??

    His work in Triple-A was particularly sharp, as he totaled 89 innings of 3.34 ERA ball with an outstanding 30.5% strikeout rate, a strong 6.6% walk rate and an above-average 46.9% ground-ball rate through 17 appearances (15 starts). Those numbers fall in line with Leiter’s prior success in Triple-A, where he now has a career 3.60 ERA, 29.1% strikeout rate and 6.9% walk rate in 147 1/3 innings. (From MLB Trade Rumors)

     

     

    Mark Jr was signed by the Cubs. 30 something with a career MLB K% near 20. Perhaps the FO is more concerned with MLB than filling out the back end of the minor league team

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    Just another player with a pulse ,,, whoopie 

    Twins had burrows on the roster of 2021 , another 1st rounder drafted by detroit that is  gone off the twins roster and signed a minor league contract with Dodgers for 2022  , another player that was suppose to have potential but was just another player with a pulse....

     

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    Ok, yet another LH hitting corner OF. Hmm....

    He did have some intriguing power/speed skills a few years ago. Best I can guess is the Twins think they may be able to rehab him and rebuild those skills enough to flip him this summer in a minor deal. I sure don't think he's the answer to backfill in RF if Kepler is dealt.

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    On 12/18/2021 at 11:20 AM, rv78 said:

    More dumpster diving...... what else is new.   I am wondering why the Twins need two Jake Caves. One is tooooo many.

    They can't sign major league players right now because of the lockout, but sure. I guess we can criticize the FO for picking up minor league depth anyway.

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