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  1. The 2021 MLB Draft has come and gone, and the Minnesota Twins brought in a new wave of young talent after making 21 picks. How many of them will sign and how good will they eventually turn out is yet to be determined, but for now, there is certainly reason to be excited about this class. While this year’s draft of 20 rounds was still only half of the usual 40, it pretty much felt like a return to normalcy after last year’s draft only had five rounds. The Twins had a clear approach of wanting to draft players that they knew they could sign, as they targeted high schoolers with both of their picks on night one, and then drafted exclusively college players on days two and three. When asked about this in an interview after the draft, Twins scouting director Sean Johnson had this to say, “Once you get past the second round a lot of those high school players that you would like to bring on board become a little less signable… so you get out of that high school group pretty quick starting in the second or third round.” With the 26th overall pick in the first round, the Twins took a fireball high school pitcher from New Jersey named Chase Petty. In showcases last summer and leading up to the draft, Petty’s fastball has routinely been clocked in the triple digits and has reached as high as 102 mph. Petty also has a breaking ball and a changeup that show potential to be above average pitches as he develops them. As a result of his makeup, along with how high school fireball pitchers have fared in the past, Petty was seen as a risky pick. However, with the Twins picking late in the first round, it made perfect sense to bet on the high upside of Petty, as his ceiling is as high as most of the players taken with the first ten picks of the draft. Just ten picks after they selected Chase Petty, the Twins were on the clock again, this time closing out night one of the draft in Competitive Balance Round A. Again, they went the high school route as they selected Noah Miller, a shortstop from Wisconsin. Miller is a well thought of defensive shortstop who could stick there at the professional level. Offensively, Miller is a switch-hitter with more of a contact approach. While the power is still a bit of a question mark, Miller has time to develop that as he gets into the Twins player development program. The focus early on day two was college pitching, as four of their first five picks were college pitchers. While each of those four pitchers are seen as more pitch-ability guys, with potential to be back of the rotation starting pitcher or long relief options, second round pick Steven Hajjar does have some middle of the rotation upside if he can tack on a few more MPHs on his fastball. With the rest of their picks on day two, the Twins focused on filling out their infield and catcher positions. In the fourth round they selected Christian Encarnacion-Strand, who is a third baseman from Oklahoma State with some power potential with the bat. They also drafted back-to-back catchers in the 8th in 9th rounds to continue to build depth at that position within the organization. On day three it became all about filling out the rest of their class with as many quality players as they could. Again the focus early was on pitching, as three of the first four picks on day three were pitchers. Sandwiched between those pitchers was the first and only outfielder the Twins took in the entire draft, as they selected Big East Player of the Year Kyler Fedko out of UConn. Another theme of this draft was taking multiple players who played for the same university. In the 8th and 15th rounds, the Twins selected catcher Noah Cardenas and middle infielder Mikey Perez from UCLA. In the 9th and 12th rounds, the Twins took a pair of UConn Huskies in catcher Pat Winkel and outfielder Kyler Fedko. Texas Tech was also well represented in this year’s Twins draft class, as a pair of Red Raiders in right-handed pitcher Brandon Birdwell and second baseman Dylan Neuse were taken in the 11th and 17th rounds, respectively. One thing everyone wants to know is, how good will this draft class be, and I can promise that the guys within the Twins organization who made these selections are wondering the same thing. The truth is, nobody knows and we likely won’t be able to accurately judge this class for another five to ten years. One this is true however, the Twins just added a number of new and exciting players to their ranks, and all Twins fans should be excited to see what these guys can do. View full article
  2. While this year’s draft of 20 rounds was still only half of the usual 40, it pretty much felt like a return to normalcy after last year’s draft only had five rounds. The Twins had a clear approach of wanting to draft players that they knew they could sign, as they targeted high schoolers with both of their picks on night one, and then drafted exclusively college players on days two and three. When asked about this in an interview after the draft, Twins scouting director Sean Johnson had this to say, “Once you get past the second round a lot of those high school players that you would like to bring on board become a little less signable… so you get out of that high school group pretty quick starting in the second or third round.” With the 26th overall pick in the first round, the Twins took a fireball high school pitcher from New Jersey named Chase Petty. In showcases last summer and leading up to the draft, Petty’s fastball has routinely been clocked in the triple digits and has reached as high as 102 mph. Petty also has a breaking ball and a changeup that show potential to be above average pitches as he develops them. As a result of his makeup, along with how high school fireball pitchers have fared in the past, Petty was seen as a risky pick. However, with the Twins picking late in the first round, it made perfect sense to bet on the high upside of Petty, as his ceiling is as high as most of the players taken with the first ten picks of the draft. Just ten picks after they selected Chase Petty, the Twins were on the clock again, this time closing out night one of the draft in Competitive Balance Round A. Again, they went the high school route as they selected Noah Miller, a shortstop from Wisconsin. Miller is a well thought of defensive shortstop who could stick there at the professional level. Offensively, Miller is a switch-hitter with more of a contact approach. While the power is still a bit of a question mark, Miller has time to develop that as he gets into the Twins player development program. The focus early on day two was college pitching, as four of their first five picks were college pitchers. While each of those four pitchers are seen as more pitch-ability guys, with potential to be back of the rotation starting pitcher or long relief options, second round pick Steven Hajjar does have some middle of the rotation upside if he can tack on a few more MPHs on his fastball. With the rest of their picks on day two, the Twins focused on filling out their infield and catcher positions. In the fourth round they selected Christian Encarnacion-Strand, who is a third baseman from Oklahoma State with some power potential with the bat. They also drafted back-to-back catchers in the 8th in 9th rounds to continue to build depth at that position within the organization. On day three it became all about filling out the rest of their class with as many quality players as they could. Again the focus early was on pitching, as three of the first four picks on day three were pitchers. Sandwiched between those pitchers was the first and only outfielder the Twins took in the entire draft, as they selected Big East Player of the Year Kyler Fedko out of UConn. Another theme of this draft was taking multiple players who played for the same university. In the 8th and 15th rounds, the Twins selected catcher Noah Cardenas and middle infielder Mikey Perez from UCLA. In the 9th and 12th rounds, the Twins took a pair of UConn Huskies in catcher Pat Winkel and outfielder Kyler Fedko. Texas Tech was also well represented in this year’s Twins draft class, as a pair of Red Raiders in right-handed pitcher Brandon Birdwell and second baseman Dylan Neuse were taken in the 11th and 17th rounds, respectively. One thing everyone wants to know is, how good will this draft class be, and I can promise that the guys within the Twins organization who made these selections are wondering the same thing. The truth is, nobody knows and we likely won’t be able to accurately judge this class for another five to ten years. One this is true however, the Twins just added a number of new and exciting players to their ranks, and all Twins fans should be excited to see what these guys can do.
  3. Come here to follow everything happening on night one of the draft and join in on the conversation. It is officially All-Star week and that means the first day of the MLB Draft is finally upon us. Unlike in years past, when the draft took place in early June, this year’s draft will take place in the All-Star game’s host city of Denver, Colorado. This year’s draft will feature just 20 rounds, instead of the usual 40. Day 1, which begins at 6 p.m. CT and can be viewed on ESPN and MLB Network, features both round 1 and Competitive Balance Round A. The Twins have two picks tonight, with the first one coming at pick number 26 overall in the first round. They will then conclude tonight’s events with the last pick in Competitive Balance Round A, which will be pick number 36 overall. The draft will then pick back up again tomorrow with round 2, starting at 12 p.m. CT. If you want a quick glimpse at who some of the top prospects are available in this year’s draft, you can take a look at the Twins Daily Top 50 Draft Prospect rankings. 2021 MLB Draft Top 50 Prospects: 1-10 2021 MLB Draft Top 50 Prospects: 11-20 2021 MLB Draft Top 50 Prospects: 21-30 2021 MLB Draft Top 50 Prospects: 31-40 2021 MLB Draft Top 50 Prospects: 41-50 MLB Draft Day 1 Picks Round 1 1. Pirates: Henry Davis, C, Louisville 2. Rangers: Jack Leiter, RHP, Vanderbilt 3. Tigers: Jackson Jobe, RHP, Heritage Hall HS (OK) 4. Red Sox: Marcelo Mayer, SS, Eastlake HS (CA) 5. Orioles: Colton Cowser, OF, Sam Houston State 6. Diamondbacks: Jordan Lawlar, SS, Jesuit HS (TX) 7. Royals: Frank Mozzicato, LHP, East Catholic HS (CT) 8. Rockies: Benny Montgomery, OF, Red Land HS (PA) 9. Angels: Sam Bachman, RHP, Miami (OH) 10. Mets: Kumar Rocker, RHP, Vanderbilt 11. Nationals: Brady House, SS, Winder-Barrow HS (GA) 12. Mariners: Harry Ford, C, Horth Cobb HS (GA) 13. Phillies: Andrew Painter, RHP, Calvary Christian HS (FL) 14. Giants: Will Bednar, RHP, Mississippi State 15. Brewers: Sal Frelick, OF, Boston College 16. Marlins: Kahlil Watson, SS, Wake Forest HS (NC) 17. Reds: Matt McLain, SS, UCLA 18. Cardinals: Michael McGreevy, RHP UC Santa Barbara 19. Blue Jays: Gunnar Hoglund, RHP, Ole Miss 20. Yankees: Trey Sweeney, SS, Eastern Illinois 21. Cubs: Jordan Wicks, LHP, Kansas State 22. White Sox: Colson Montgomery, SS, Southridge HS (IN) 23. Indians: Gavin Williams, RHP, East Carolina 24. Braves: Ryan Cusick, RHP, Wake Forest 25. Athletics: Max Muncy, SS, Thousand Oaks HS (CA) 26. Twins: Chase Petty, RHP, Mainland Regional HS (NJ) 27. Padres: Jackson Merrill, SS, Severna Park HS (MD) 28. Rays: Carson Williams, SS, Torrey Pines HS (CA) 29. Dodgers: Maddux Bruns, LHP, UMS Wright Prep School (AL) Compensation Picks 30. Reds: (Trevor Bauer): Jay Allen, OF, John Carroll HS (FL) Competitive Balance Round A 31. Marlins: Joe Mack, C, Williamsville East HS (NY) 32. Tigers: Ty Madden, RHP, Texas 33. Brewers: Tyler Black, 2B, Wright State University 34. Rays: Cooper Kinney, 2B, The Baylor Schools (TN) 35. Reds: Matheu Nelson, C, Florida State 36. Twins: Noah Miller, SS, Ozaukee HS (WI) View full article
  4. It is officially All-Star week and that means the first day of the MLB Draft is finally upon us. Unlike in years past, when the draft took place in early June, this year’s draft will take place in the All-Star game’s host city of Denver, Colorado. This year’s draft will feature just 20 rounds, instead of the usual 40. Day 1, which begins at 6 p.m. CT and can be viewed on ESPN and MLB Network, features both round 1 and Competitive Balance Round A. The Twins have two picks tonight, with the first one coming at pick number 26 overall in the first round. They will then conclude tonight’s events with the last pick in Competitive Balance Round A, which will be pick number 36 overall. The draft will then pick back up again tomorrow with round 2, starting at 12 p.m. CT. If you want a quick glimpse at who some of the top prospects are available in this year’s draft, you can take a look at the Twins Daily Top 50 Draft Prospect rankings. 2021 MLB Draft Top 50 Prospects: 1-10 2021 MLB Draft Top 50 Prospects: 11-20 2021 MLB Draft Top 50 Prospects: 21-30 2021 MLB Draft Top 50 Prospects: 31-40 2021 MLB Draft Top 50 Prospects: 41-50 MLB Draft Day 1 Picks Round 1 1. Pirates: Henry Davis, C, Louisville 2. Rangers: Jack Leiter, RHP, Vanderbilt 3. Tigers: Jackson Jobe, RHP, Heritage Hall HS (OK) 4. Red Sox: Marcelo Mayer, SS, Eastlake HS (CA) 5. Orioles: Colton Cowser, OF, Sam Houston State 6. Diamondbacks: Jordan Lawlar, SS, Jesuit HS (TX) 7. Royals: Frank Mozzicato, LHP, East Catholic HS (CT) 8. Rockies: Benny Montgomery, OF, Red Land HS (PA) 9. Angels: Sam Bachman, RHP, Miami (OH) 10. Mets: Kumar Rocker, RHP, Vanderbilt 11. Nationals: Brady House, SS, Winder-Barrow HS (GA) 12. Mariners: Harry Ford, C, Horth Cobb HS (GA) 13. Phillies: Andrew Painter, RHP, Calvary Christian HS (FL) 14. Giants: Will Bednar, RHP, Mississippi State 15. Brewers: Sal Frelick, OF, Boston College 16. Marlins: Kahlil Watson, SS, Wake Forest HS (NC) 17. Reds: Matt McLain, SS, UCLA 18. Cardinals: Michael McGreevy, RHP UC Santa Barbara 19. Blue Jays: Gunnar Hoglund, RHP, Ole Miss 20. Yankees: Trey Sweeney, SS, Eastern Illinois 21. Cubs: Jordan Wicks, LHP, Kansas State 22. White Sox: Colson Montgomery, SS, Southridge HS (IN) 23. Indians: Gavin Williams, RHP, East Carolina 24. Braves: Ryan Cusick, RHP, Wake Forest 25. Athletics: Max Muncy, SS, Thousand Oaks HS (CA) 26. Twins: Chase Petty, RHP, Mainland Regional HS (NJ) 27. Padres: Jackson Merrill, SS, Severna Park HS (MD) 28. Rays: Carson Williams, SS, Torrey Pines HS (CA) 29. Dodgers: Maddux Bruns, LHP, UMS Wright Prep School (AL) Compensation Picks 30. Reds: (Trevor Bauer): Jay Allen, OF, John Carroll HS (FL) Competitive Balance Round A 31. Marlins: Joe Mack, C, Williamsville East HS (NY) 32. Tigers: Ty Madden, RHP, Texas 33. Brewers: Tyler Black, 2B, Wright State University 34. Rays: Cooper Kinney, 2B, The Baylor Schools (TN) 35. Reds: Matheu Nelson, C, Florida State 36. Twins: Noah Miller, SS, Ozaukee HS (WI)
  5. When? This year’s MLB Draft will consist of 20-rounds that will take part over three days. Day 1 of the draft, featuring round one and Competitive Balance Round A, will air on both MLB Network and ESPN and will begin at 6 p.m. CT. The Twins have two picks on Day 1, which are the 26th and 36th overall picks. Day 2 of the draft will begin on Monday at 12 p.m. CT and can be watched on MLB.com. This day will feature rounds two through ten, along with Competitive Balance Round B that will take place between rounds two and three. The Twins have the 26th pick in round two (61st overall), and then will have the 27th pick in each subsequent round after that. The draft will conclude with Day 3 taking place on Tuesday, starting at 11 a.m. CT and can be followed on MLB.com. Day 3 will feature rounds 11-20, again with the Twins holding the 27th pick in each round. In years past, Day 3 would feature rounds 11-40, however, as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the draft was shortened this year from 40 rounds down to 20. Who are the Top Prospects? If you want to dive in a little deeper on who some of the top prospects are before, or during, the draft, check out the Twins Daily Top 50 Prospect series that has been running for the last couple of weeks. 2021 MLB Draft Top 50 Prospects: 1-10 2021 MLB Draft Top 50 Prospects: 11-20 2021 MLB Draft Top 50 Prospects: 21-30 2021 MLB Draft Top 50 Prospects: 31-40 2021 MLB Draft Top 50 Prospects: 41-50 Possible Twins Picks to Follow If you are curious as to who are some of the names to follow for the Twins first round pick, Jamie Cameron wrote a great article earlier this week highlighting six players that the Twins may take with their first round pick. Twins Bonus Pool Allotment For those of you who follow the MLB Draft each year, you are probably well aware of the bonus pool structure by now. However, for those of you who don’t really know how that works, or need a little refresher, here is a quick breakdown of the logistics. When a team drafts a player, that team must make an offer to that player to get them to sign with their organization, which comes in the form of a signing bonus. Each team is only allotted a certain dollar amount that they must stay at or below when signing each of their picks in the first 10 rounds. This allotment number is determined by adding together each of the pick allotments which that team has in the first round, as each pick is assigned a specific value. For example, the Pittsburgh Pirates have the first overall pick in the draft, and that pick has a slot value of $8,415,300, while the Texas Rangers have the second overall pick in the draft which has a slot value of $7,789,900. If a team fails to sign one of their picks in the first 10 rounds, they do not simply get to use that money to help sign other picks, but rather that picks slot value is subtracted from the team’s total. This is where the game of the draft comes into play, as teams will often make selections based on how much it will take to sign a certain player. Additionally, for picks in rounds 11-20, if a team signs a player for more than $125,000, that money must come out of their bonus pool from the first 10 rounds. Here is a breakdown of the Twins picks in the first 10 rounds (plus their Competitive Balance Round A pick) and the slot value assigned to each pick. Round 1: $2,653,400 Comp Balance Round A: $2,045,400 Round 2: $1,129,700 Round 3: $593,100 Round 4: $442,900 Round 5: $327,200 Round 6: $253,300 Round 7: $198,500 Round 8: $164,700 Round 9: $150,500 Round 10: $142,700 Total Bonus Pool: $8,101,400 Now that you know more about how this works, you can tell fellow Twins fans who complain about the Twins being cheap in the draft that they are wrong. It is not that they are being cheap, they are just only allowed to spend so much money on these picks by MLB, and if take a guy with one of their first few picks that will sign for less that the pick value, it is because they plan on redistributing that money to sign other players later in the draft for over slot value, a strategy they have had a lot of success within recent years.
  6. The 2021 MLB Draft kicks off on Sunday. Read below to learn everything you need to know about this year’s MLB draft. When? This year’s MLB Draft will consist of 20-rounds that will take part over three days. Day 1 of the draft, featuring round one and Competitive Balance Round A, will air on both MLB Network and ESPN and will begin at 6 p.m. CT. The Twins have two picks on Day 1, which are the 26th and 36th overall picks. Day 2 of the draft will begin on Monday at 12 p.m. CT and can be watched on MLB.com. This day will feature rounds two through ten, along with Competitive Balance Round B that will take place between rounds two and three. The Twins have the 26th pick in round two (61st overall), and then will have the 27th pick in each subsequent round after that. The draft will conclude with Day 3 taking place on Tuesday, starting at 11 a.m. CT and can be followed on MLB.com. Day 3 will feature rounds 11-20, again with the Twins holding the 27th pick in each round. In years past, Day 3 would feature rounds 11-40, however, as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the draft was shortened this year from 40 rounds down to 20. Who are the Top Prospects? If you want to dive in a little deeper on who some of the top prospects are before, or during, the draft, check out the Twins Daily Top 50 Prospect series that has been running for the last couple of weeks. 2021 MLB Draft Top 50 Prospects: 1-10 2021 MLB Draft Top 50 Prospects: 11-20 2021 MLB Draft Top 50 Prospects: 21-30 2021 MLB Draft Top 50 Prospects: 31-40 2021 MLB Draft Top 50 Prospects: 41-50 Possible Twins Picks to Follow If you are curious as to who are some of the names to follow for the Twins first round pick, Jamie Cameron wrote a great article earlier this week highlighting six players that the Twins may take with their first round pick. Twins Bonus Pool Allotment For those of you who follow the MLB Draft each year, you are probably well aware of the bonus pool structure by now. However, for those of you who don’t really know how that works, or need a little refresher, here is a quick breakdown of the logistics. When a team drafts a player, that team must make an offer to that player to get them to sign with their organization, which comes in the form of a signing bonus. Each team is only allotted a certain dollar amount that they must stay at or below when signing each of their picks in the first 10 rounds. This allotment number is determined by adding together each of the pick allotments which that team has in the first round, as each pick is assigned a specific value. For example, the Pittsburgh Pirates have the first overall pick in the draft, and that pick has a slot value of $8,415,300, while the Texas Rangers have the second overall pick in the draft which has a slot value of $7,789,900. If a team fails to sign one of their picks in the first 10 rounds, they do not simply get to use that money to help sign other picks, but rather that picks slot value is subtracted from the team’s total. This is where the game of the draft comes into play, as teams will often make selections based on how much it will take to sign a certain player. Additionally, for picks in rounds 11-20, if a team signs a player for more than $125,000, that money must come out of their bonus pool from the first 10 rounds. Here is a breakdown of the Twins picks in the first 10 rounds (plus their Competitive Balance Round A pick) and the slot value assigned to each pick. Round 1: $2,653,400 Comp Balance Round A: $2,045,400 Round 2: $1,129,700 Round 3: $593,100 Round 4: $442,900 Round 5: $327,200 Round 6: $253,300 Round 7: $198,500 Round 8: $164,700 Round 9: $150,500 Round 10: $142,700 Total Bonus Pool: $8,101,400 Now that you know more about how this works, you can tell fellow Twins fans who complain about the Twins being cheap in the draft that they are wrong. It is not that they are being cheap, they are just only allowed to spend so much money on these picks by MLB, and if take a guy with one of their first few picks that will sign for less that the pick value, it is because they plan on redistributing that money to sign other players later in the draft for over slot value, a strategy they have had a lot of success within recent years. View full article
  7. The 2020 MLB Draft will go down in history for not only being just five rounds long, but for the lack of scouting teams were able to do in the months leading up to the draft, thanks to the seasons being cut short by the coronavirus. This created a whole new set of challenges for MLB organizations like the Minnesota Twins. So, let’s take a look at how the Twins faired with their four picks in this year’s draft.Prior to the draft, I looked into a number of different strategies that the Twins could use in this draft, specifically as how they could divvy up their signing bonus pool. One of the strategies outlined was a portfolio approach, where they would try to save money with their first couple of picks, in order to spread that money around into there last two picks, where the slot values are not as high. Aaron Sabato With their first-round pick, the Twins went to the college ranks to select UNC first-baseman Aaron Sabato. In his one full season in a Tar Heels uniform, Sabato put his powerful bat on full display, tallying 44 extra-base hits in just 64 games played. This included hitting for the cycle against rival North Carolina State on May 16th. Sabato is more than just raw power though, as he is a career .332 hitter at UNC, with a career .459 OBP in 83 games played. It is hard not to see how Sabato fits into the Twins overall draft philosophy of drafting big and powerful bats, joining the ranks of Brent Rooker, Trevor Larnach, Ryan Jeffers, Keoni Cavaco and Matt Wallner all taken in the early rounds in recent years. Since Sabato is a draft eligible sophomore, with a lot of potential, he likely will not sign for below the slot value of the 27th pick in the draft. If you would like to read up more on Sabato, and see what Scouting Director Sean Johnson had to say about him, you can do so here. Alerick Soularie Going into day two of the draft, the Twins had their sights set on Tennessee outfielder Alerick Soularie. He was a player that was circled high on their boards, and they didn’t feel like he would be there when they made their next pick after this one, a whole 69 picks later. Soularie began his college career at San Jacinto JC (the same JUCO that both Roger Clemens and Andy Pettite went to) where he lit up the competition on his way to a .402/.513/.745 slash line with 10 home runs in 59 games and lead his team to a third-place finish. This impressive performance opened the doors to a transfer to Tennessee, where he continued to have great success. In his only full season for the Volunteers Alerick Soularie hit for an impressive .357/.466/.602 slash line, while going up against SEC pitching for the first time. His numbers were down slightly to start the 2020 season, before it got cut short. It is hard to know for sure from an outside perspective, but it seems like Soularie is a pick that the Twins should be able to sign for below the $1.19 million assigned to that slot. Which would allow the Twins to spend over slot, in order to sign each of their final two picks. If you would like to read up more on Soularie, and see what Scouting Director Sean Johnson had to say about him, you can do so here. Marco Raya The only pitcher that the Twins selected in the draft was Marco Raya, a prep arm out of the state of Texas. Raya is a bit undersized, but he is a good athlete and excellent mechanics that helps him pump it up as high as 94 MPH without needing a lot of effort. Raya also throws two above-average breaking balls in a slider and curveball. Both pitches have potential to be plus pitches down the line. Finally, Raya also throws a pretty decent changeup, which gives him a rare four-pitch mix that not a lot of high schoolers have at this point in their development. It will be a few years until we really know who Raya is as an MLB prospect (he’s still only 17-years old), but he has a bright future ahead of him. Being a high school player, committed to Texas Tech, the Twins will likely need to use some of the money saved on Soularie in order to sing him. If you would like to read up more on Raya, and see what Scouting Director Sean Johnson had to say about him, you can do so here. Kala'i Rosario The Twins final selection in the 2020 MLB Draft was a high school bat, with a powerful profile in Kala’I Rosario. Rosario is a player that impressed a lot of scouts in the Area Code games last season. While there is a lot of work to do with his overall approach and swing at the plate, it is evident that Rosario has much raw power as any other prep player in the draft. While many other sites weren’t as high on Rosario, I fell in love with what this guy could potentially be if he is able to maximize his raw power, which is why he came in at number 73 on my final pre-draft rankings. While Rosario might be far from a finished product, he has plenty of time to develop (he won’t turn 18 until July), and already has some great upside tools. As was the case with Raya, the Twins will probably need to go above slot value to sign Rosario, but they are confident that they will be able to get a deal worked out. If you would like to read up more on Rosario, and see what Scouting Director Sean Johnson had to say about him, you can do so here. In total, it was a very good draft for the Minnesota Twins, all things considered. Not only were they limited in the number of picks and time to scout these players, but they also had the 4th smallest signing bonus pool, which hampers a lot of what they could do in the draft. However, they came into this draft with a plan, and executed that to near perfection, and now the minor-league system has four new potential stars of the future. Great work by all of the scouts and other members of the organization that had a hand in this draft. Let us know below what you thought of the Twins draft, and what letter grade you would give them. MORE FROM TWINS DAILY — Latest Twins coverage from our writers — Recent Twins discussion in our forums — Follow Twins Daily via Twitter, Facebook or email — Follow Andrew Thares on Twitter here Click here to view the article
  8. Prior to the draft, I looked into a number of different strategies that the Twins could use in this draft, specifically as how they could divvy up their signing bonus pool. One of the strategies outlined was a portfolio approach, where they would try to save money with their first couple of picks, in order to spread that money around into there last two picks, where the slot values are not as high. Aaron Sabato With their first-round pick, the Twins went to the college ranks to select UNC first-baseman Aaron Sabato. In his one full season in a Tar Heels uniform, Sabato put his powerful bat on full display, tallying 44 extra-base hits in just 64 games played. This included hitting for the cycle against rival North Carolina State on May 16th. Sabato is more than just raw power though, as he is a career .332 hitter at UNC, with a career .459 OBP in 83 games played. It is hard not to see how Sabato fits into the Twins overall draft philosophy of drafting big and powerful bats, joining the ranks of Brent Rooker, Trevor Larnach, Ryan Jeffers, Keoni Cavaco and Matt Wallner all taken in the early rounds in recent years. Since Sabato is a draft eligible sophomore, with a lot of potential, he likely will not sign for below the slot value of the 27th pick in the draft. If you would like to read up more on Sabato, and see what Scouting Director Sean Johnson had to say about him, you can do so here. Alerick Soularie Going into day two of the draft, the Twins had their sights set on Tennessee outfielder Alerick Soularie. He was a player that was circled high on their boards, and they didn’t feel like he would be there when they made their next pick after this one, a whole 69 picks later. Soularie began his college career at San Jacinto JC (the same JUCO that both Roger Clemens and Andy Pettite went to) where he lit up the competition on his way to a .402/.513/.745 slash line with 10 home runs in 59 games and lead his team to a third-place finish. This impressive performance opened the doors to a transfer to Tennessee, where he continued to have great success. In his only full season for the Volunteers Alerick Soularie hit for an impressive .357/.466/.602 slash line, while going up against SEC pitching for the first time. His numbers were down slightly to start the 2020 season, before it got cut short. It is hard to know for sure from an outside perspective, but it seems like Soularie is a pick that the Twins should be able to sign for below the $1.19 million assigned to that slot. Which would allow the Twins to spend over slot, in order to sign each of their final two picks. If you would like to read up more on Soularie, and see what Scouting Director Sean Johnson had to say about him, you can do so here. Marco Raya The only pitcher that the Twins selected in the draft was Marco Raya, a prep arm out of the state of Texas. Raya is a bit undersized, but he is a good athlete and excellent mechanics that helps him pump it up as high as 94 MPH without needing a lot of effort. Raya also throws two above-average breaking balls in a slider and curveball. Both pitches have potential to be plus pitches down the line. Finally, Raya also throws a pretty decent changeup, which gives him a rare four-pitch mix that not a lot of high schoolers have at this point in their development. It will be a few years until we really know who Raya is as an MLB prospect (he’s still only 17-years old), but he has a bright future ahead of him. Being a high school player, committed to Texas Tech, the Twins will likely need to use some of the money saved on Soularie in order to sing him. If you would like to read up more on Raya, and see what Scouting Director Sean Johnson had to say about him, you can do so here. Kala'i Rosario The Twins final selection in the 2020 MLB Draft was a high school bat, with a powerful profile in Kala’I Rosario. Rosario is a player that impressed a lot of scouts in the Area Code games last season. While there is a lot of work to do with his overall approach and swing at the plate, it is evident that Rosario has much raw power as any other prep player in the draft. While many other sites weren’t as high on Rosario, I fell in love with what this guy could potentially be if he is able to maximize his raw power, which is why he came in at number 73 on my final pre-draft rankings. While Rosario might be far from a finished product, he has plenty of time to develop (he won’t turn 18 until July), and already has some great upside tools. As was the case with Raya, the Twins will probably need to go above slot value to sign Rosario, but they are confident that they will be able to get a deal worked out. If you would like to read up more on Rosario, and see what Scouting Director Sean Johnson had to say about him, you can do so here. In total, it was a very good draft for the Minnesota Twins, all things considered. Not only were they limited in the number of picks and time to scout these players, but they also had the 4th smallest signing bonus pool, which hampers a lot of what they could do in the draft. However, they came into this draft with a plan, and executed that to near perfection, and now the minor-league system has four new potential stars of the future. Great work by all of the scouts and other members of the organization that had a hand in this draft. Let us know below what you thought of the Twins draft, and what letter grade you would give them. MORE FROM TWINS DAILY — Latest Twins coverage from our writers — Recent Twins discussion in our forums — Follow Twins Daily via Twitter, Facebook or email — Follow Andrew Thares on Twitter here
  9. Watching Marco Raya pitch, you can tell this kid is a great athlete. Despite being undersized at just 6'0", Raya is able to maximize his velocity through his mechanics and quick twitch. Another thing that is evident with Raya is the balance he has on his back leg, which really helps him get into his set and deliver strikes with consistency. Twins scouting director Sean Johnson noted, "We really love his mechanics, his delivery, his arm action. He checks a lot of boxes for us. For a high school pitcher, great foundation to evolve into a starter." Johnson also said they liked a lot about his current pitch mix, "We’ve seen him up to 94 mph. He’s got two distinct breaking balls and a good changeup. He’s got a great foundation to develop. He’s a great piece of clay for our player development to mold and to build. He’s not huge in stature, but he’s still got room to add strength." Raya will typically sit in the low 90s with his fastball, and it is hard to project a lot more than that from him down the road. However, it does record relatively high spin rates for a fastball, typically at 2,400 RPM plus, which could help make it more of a future strikeout pitch than just the pure velocity would suggest. Raya also brings two excellent breaking balls to the table, with a sharp slider, and a hard-breaking curveball that to me appears to be his best pitch. The slider sits in the low-to-mid 80s, while the curveball has more downward break and is typically upper 70s. Just like with his fastball, Raya can generate high spin rates with both of his breaking pitches, which is something a lot of analytically driven scouting departments, like the Twins, want to see in young pitchers as they try to project them going forwars. Finally, Raya mixes in the occasional low 80s changeup, that shows signs of a future fourth average or better pitch. This will be a key factor in Raya's development as a starting pitcher. If he can continue to develop all four of his pitches, and show that they are MLB worth pitches, he has a real shot making it as a starting pitcher with a four-pitch mix. If not, Raya's could be a likely bullpen candidate, where his fastball could potentially play up a little bit, and his breaking ball could dominate. According to Johnson, Raya also has great intangibles. "He’s a tremendous worker, a tremendous competitor. Tremendous competitor. He's a solid athlete. Again, we’re really excited to get him in the fourth round." https://twitter.com/Twins/status/1271259094620520448 As a high school pitcher, Raya might be difficult to sign away from his commitment to Texas Tech with just the $442,900 slot value that is associated with the 128th pick overall. However, it is possible that the Twins were able to save a little bit of money with their second-round pick in Alerick Soularie, that they could then use to go over slot to sign Raya if that's what it takes. Johnson noted after the draft succinctly, "All I'll say on that is we expect to sign all four players." MORE FROM TWINS DAILY — Latest Twins coverage from our writers — Recent Twins discussion in our forums — Follow Twins Daily via Twitter, Facebook or email
  10. After taking two college hitters in Aaron Sabato and Alerick Soularie, with their first and second round picks, respectively. In the fourth-round, the Twins selected their first pitcher of the draft, taking Marco Raya, a right-handed pitcher from Laredo, Texas.Watching Marco Raya pitch, you can tell this kid is a great athlete. Despite being undersized at just 6'0", Raya is able to maximize his velocity through his mechanics and quick twitch. Another thing that is evident with Raya is the balance he has on his back leg, which really helps him get into his set and deliver strikes with consistency. Twins scouting director Sean Johnson noted, "We really love his mechanics, his delivery, his arm action. He checks a lot of boxes for us. For a high school pitcher, great foundation to evolve into a starter." Johnson also said they liked a lot about his current pitch mix, "We’ve seen him up to 94 mph. He’s got two distinct breaking balls and a good changeup. He’s got a great foundation to develop. He’s a great piece of clay for our player development to mold and to build. He’s not huge in stature, but he’s still got room to add strength." Raya will typically sit in the low 90s with his fastball, and it is hard to project a lot more than that from him down the road. However, it does record relatively high spin rates for a fastball, typically at 2,400 RPM plus, which could help make it more of a future strikeout pitch than just the pure velocity would suggest. Raya also brings two excellent breaking balls to the table, with a sharp slider, and a hard-breaking curveball that to me appears to be his best pitch. The slider sits in the low-to-mid 80s, while the curveball has more downward break and is typically upper 70s. Just like with his fastball, Raya can generate high spin rates with both of his breaking pitches, which is something a lot of analytically driven scouting departments, like the Twins, want to see in young pitchers as they try to project them going forwars. Finally, Raya mixes in the occasional low 80s changeup, that shows signs of a future fourth average or better pitch. This will be a key factor in Raya's development as a starting pitcher. If he can continue to develop all four of his pitches, and show that they are MLB worth pitches, he has a real shot making it as a starting pitcher with a four-pitch mix. If not, Raya's could be a likely bullpen candidate, where his fastball could potentially play up a little bit, and his breaking ball could dominate. According to Johnson, Raya also has great intangibles. "He’s a tremendous worker, a tremendous competitor. Tremendous competitor. He's a solid athlete. Again, we’re really excited to get him in the fourth round." from our writers— Recent Twins discussion in our forums — Follow Twins Daily via Twitter, Facebook or email Click here to view the article
  11. The Minnesota Twins have selected University of North Carolina first basemen Aaron Sabato with their first-round pick. Sabato has about as much power as any player in this draft, short of first overall pick Spencer Torkelson. He fits in nicely with how the Twins have drafted in recent years.Prior to the MLB Draft, I had Aaron Sabato ranked as the 38th best prospect in the draft. Here is the profile I wrote on Sabato during our pre-draft Top 50 Prospect series. Scouting Grades Hit: 55 Power: 65 Run: 35 Throw: 45 Field: 40 Overall: 50 For a college first baseman, with no real potential to play anywhere but first or DH, you better bring a powerful bat if you want to be considered a potential first-round pick, and that is just what Aaron Sabato does. As a draft eligible sophomore, Sabato’s time to impress scouts at the college level has been limited, but he has made full use of that time. After blasting 18 home runs in 64 games as a true freshman in 2019, Sabato belted another 7 home runs in just 19 games this spring, before the season was cut short. Defensively, things aren’t always the smoothest for Sabato at first-base, though they aren’t bad enough to take his glove off the field just yet. Hopefully with some professional coaching, he can bring up his play closer to average at first base. Aaron Sabato is a young player for a college pick, having just turned 21 last Thursday. After going undrafted coming out of high school in 2018, Sabato tore it up in his freshman season at UNC with an impressive .343/.453/.696 slash line. For his efforts, Sabato won a trophy case full of awards, which includes Co-National Freshman of the Year, first-team All-American, first-team Freshman All-America, NCBWA Freshman Hitter of the Year, first-team All-ACC and ACC Freshman of the Year. He followed that up with a .292/.478/.708 slash line in 19 games this spring before the season got cut short due to COVID-19. Sabato has put his power bat on full display in his time with the Tar Heels, hitting 25 home runs and 31 doubles in just 83 career games. Twins Scouting Director Sean Johnson said of the Twins top pick, "We thought he was the best offensive player left on the board from every standpoint possible. Going back to his season last year, if you look at him analytically, he lined up with some of the guys who went at the very top of the board." This now marks 4-4 on the Twins taking a hitter with their first-round pick, since the current regime took over the team. Personally, I think this strategy makes a lot of sense. Typically, pitchers in the draft come with much more risk than hitters do. The reason being, you never know when a serious injury is going to happen, but they are far more likely to happen with a young pitcher than a young hitter. I think this strategy also speaks to the overall player development strategy of the Twins front office, and that is take talented hitters with good power potential early, then focus on developing pitchers as they come up through the minor league system. This really makes a lot of sense when you consider the background of some of the Twins front office personnel, especially Derek Falvey, who had a big hand in developing the dominate Cleveland Indians starting rotation they had while he was there. Ty Dawson is the Twins area scout for the Carolinas. It was his first season in that role and second in the organization. He joined the organization and spent the first year as a junior college specialist/scout. But Johnson explained that a decision like a first-round draft pick is made by much more than just one person. Johnson noted, ""We did have an all-hands-on-deck approach for this draft. Under the circumstances, Rocco, Mike Bell, Wes Johnson, and on down, all of our player development people, from Jeremy Zoll and Alex Hassan, all of our coordinators. I would say we had upwards of 50 Twins employees that had some opinion on this group of players, from the scouts, PD (Player Development), front office. We asked for a lot of opinions. We really believe in wisdom of crowds. We tried to look at the player from every direction possible." Read up on some of the other great draft coverage on Twins Daily Minnesota Twins Draft Preview 2020 MLB Draft Day 1 Thread How Should the Twins Strategically Approach the MLB Draft? First Round Busts: The Twins Struckout Three Consecutive Years Reviewing Minnesota’s Recent First-Round Picks What does MLB History Say About the 27th Pick? Mike Trout and 3 Other Stars the Twins Passed On in the MLB Draft MORE FROM TWINS DAILY — Latest Twins coverage from our writers — Recent Twins discussion in our forums — Follow Twins Daily via Twitter, Facebook or email Click here to view the article
  12. Prior to the MLB Draft, I had Aaron Sabato ranked as the 38th best prospect in the draft. Here is the profile I wrote on Sabato during our pre-draft Top 50 Prospect series. Scouting Grades Hit: 55 Power: 65 Run: 35 Throw: 45 Field: 40 Overall: 50 For a college first baseman, with no real potential to play anywhere but first or DH, you better bring a powerful bat if you want to be considered a potential first-round pick, and that is just what Aaron Sabato does. As a draft eligible sophomore, Sabato’s time to impress scouts at the college level has been limited, but he has made full use of that time. After blasting 18 home runs in 64 games as a true freshman in 2019, Sabato belted another 7 home runs in just 19 games this spring, before the season was cut short. Defensively, things aren’t always the smoothest for Sabato at first-base, though they aren’t bad enough to take his glove off the field just yet. Hopefully with some professional coaching, he can bring up his play closer to average at first base. https://twitter.com/Twins/status/1270927861260705792 Aaron Sabato is a young player for a college pick, having just turned 21 last Thursday. After going undrafted coming out of high school in 2018, Sabato tore it up in his freshman season at UNC with an impressive .343/.453/.696 slash line. For his efforts, Sabato won a trophy case full of awards, which includes Co-National Freshman of the Year, first-team All-American, first-team Freshman All-America, NCBWA Freshman Hitter of the Year, first-team All-ACC and ACC Freshman of the Year. He followed that up with a .292/.478/.708 slash line in 19 games this spring before the season got cut short due to COVID-19. Sabato has put his power bat on full display in his time with the Tar Heels, hitting 25 home runs and 31 doubles in just 83 career games. https://twitter.com/AndrewThares/status/1271108709066977288 Twins Scouting Director Sean Johnson said of the Twins top pick, "We thought he was the best offensive player left on the board from every standpoint possible. Going back to his season last year, if you look at him analytically, he lined up with some of the guys who went at the very top of the board." This now marks 4-4 on the Twins taking a hitter with their first-round pick, since the current regime took over the team. Personally, I think this strategy makes a lot of sense. Typically, pitchers in the draft come with much more risk than hitters do. The reason being, you never know when a serious injury is going to happen, but they are far more likely to happen with a young pitcher than a young hitter. I think this strategy also speaks to the overall player development strategy of the Twins front office, and that is take talented hitters with good power potential early, then focus on developing pitchers as they come up through the minor league system. This really makes a lot of sense when you consider the background of some of the Twins front office personnel, especially Derek Falvey, who had a big hand in developing the dominate Cleveland Indians starting rotation they had while he was there. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fwLSVsQgibA Ty Dawson is the Twins area scout for the Carolinas. It was his first season in that role and second in the organization. He joined the organization and spent the first year as a junior college specialist/scout. But Johnson explained that a decision like a first-round draft pick is made by much more than just one person. Johnson noted, ""We did have an all-hands-on-deck approach for this draft. Under the circumstances, Rocco, Mike Bell, Wes Johnson, and on down, all of our player development people, from Jeremy Zoll and Alex Hassan, all of our coordinators. I would say we had upwards of 50 Twins employees that had some opinion on this group of players, from the scouts, PD (Player Development), front office. We asked for a lot of opinions. We really believe in wisdom of crowds. We tried to look at the player from every direction possible." https://twitter.com/dohyoungpark/status/1270927203132465152 Read up on some of the other great draft coverage on Twins Daily Minnesota Twins Draft Preview 2020 MLB Draft Day 1 Thread How Should the Twins Strategically Approach the MLB Draft? First Round Busts: The Twins Struckout Three Consecutive Years Reviewing Minnesota’s Recent First-Round Picks What does MLB History Say About the 27th Pick? Mike Trout and 3 Other Stars the Twins Passed On in the MLB Draft MORE FROM TWINS DAILY — Latest Twins coverage from our writers — Recent Twins discussion in our forums — Follow Twins Daily via Twitter, Facebook or email
  13. If you want to read up more on last night’s selection you can do so here: Twins Select Aaron Sabato with the 27th Overall Pick Day two of the MLB Draft starts Thursday evening at 4:00 pm CT and can be watched on either ESPN 2 or on MLB Network. It can also be streamed live on MLB.com. In total, the Twins have three more picks tonight, which is two less than they were originally scheduled to have. As they traded their Competitive Balance Round B pick to the Los Angeles Dodgers in the Kenta Maeda trade, and forfeited their third-round pick by signing Josh Donaldson. Here is a breakdown of the three picks the Twins do have tonight, and the bonus money attached to each of those picks. 2nd Round: 59th Overall - $1,185,500 4th Round: 128th Overall - $442,900 5th Round: 158th Overall - $330,100 While many of the top players have already been taken, there is still plenty of talent that should be available when the Twins make their first selection of the night at pick number 59. In total 17 of my top 50 prospects are still available. Throughout the night, I will be updating the list of the top 10 prospects still available down below, going all the way through my top 100 prospects. Top 10 Prospects Available (Live): 46. Kevin Parada | Loyola HS, Los Angeles, CA | Pos: C 49. Chase Davis | Franklin HS, Elk Grove, CA | Pos: OF 50. Drew Bowser | Harvark-Westlake HS, Studio City, CA | Pos: 3B 56. Tanner Witt | Episcopal HS, Bellaire, TX | Pos: RHP 58. Alejandro Rosario | Miami Christian HS, FL | Pos: RHP 59. Seth Lonsway | Ohio State | Pos: LHP 62. Cade Horton | Norman HS, OK | Pos: RHP/SS 64. Tommy Mace | Florida | Pos: RHP 69. Enrique Bradfield Jr. | American Heritage HS, Plantation, FL | Pos: OF 73. Kala'i Rosario | Waiakea HS, Hilo, HI | Pos: OF Twins Selections 2nd Round: 59th Overall - Alerick Soularie | Tennessee | Pos: OF You can read more about Alerick Soularie here. https://twitter.com/AndrewThares/status/1271204591145713664 4th Round: 128th Overall - Marco Raya | United South HS, Laredo, TX | Pos: RHP You can read more about Marco Raya here. 5th Round: 158th Overall - Kala'i Rosario | Waiakea HS, Hilo, HI | Pos: OF You can read more about Kala'i Rosario here. Read up on some of the other great draft coverage on Twins Daily 2020 MLB Draft Day 1 Thread Minnesota Twins Draft Preview First Round Busts: The Twins Struckout Three Consecutive Years Reviewing Minnesota’s Recent First-Round Picks What does MLB History Say About the 27th Pick? Mike Trout and 3 Other Stars the Twins Passed On in the MLB Draft How Should the Twins Strategically Approach the MLB Draft? MORE FROM TWINS DAILY — Latest Twins coverage from our writers — Recent Twins discussion in our forums — Follow Twins Daily via Twitter, Facebook or email
  14. After a night where the Minnesota Twins added yet another powerful bat to their farm system that is loaded with them, they look to add three more new young and exciting prospects into the Twins minor league ranks, with picks in the second, fourth and fifth rounds.If you want to read up more on last night’s selection you can do so here: Twins Select Aaron Sabato with the 27th Overall Pick Day two of the MLB Draft starts Thursday evening at 4:00 pm CT and can be watched on either ESPN 2 or on MLB Network. It can also be streamed live on MLB.com. In total, the Twins have three more picks tonight, which is two less than they were originally scheduled to have. As they traded their Competitive Balance Round B pick to the Los Angeles Dodgers in the Kenta Maeda trade, and forfeited their third-round pick by signing Josh Donaldson. Here is a breakdown of the three picks the Twins do have tonight, and the bonus money attached to each of those picks. 2nd Round: 59th Overall - $1,185,500 4th Round: 128th Overall - $442,900 5th Round: 158th Overall - $330,100 While many of the top players have already been taken, there is still plenty of talent that should be available when the Twins make their first selection of the night at pick number 59. In total 17 of my top 50 prospects are still available. Throughout the night, I will be updating the list of the top 10 prospects still available down below, going all the way through my top 100 prospects. Top 10 Prospects Available (Live): 46. Kevin Parada | Loyola HS, Los Angeles, CA | Pos: C 49. Chase Davis | Franklin HS, Elk Grove, CA | Pos: OF 50. Drew Bowser | Harvark-Westlake HS, Studio City, CA | Pos: 3B 56. Tanner Witt | Episcopal HS, Bellaire, TX | Pos: RHP 58. Alejandro Rosario | Miami Christian HS, FL | Pos: RHP 59. Seth Lonsway | Ohio State | Pos: LHP 62. Cade Horton | Norman HS, OK | Pos: RHP/SS 64. Tommy Mace | Florida | Pos: RHP 69. Enrique Bradfield Jr. | American Heritage HS, Plantation, FL | Pos: OF 73. Kala'i Rosario | Waiakea HS, Hilo, HI | Pos: OF Twins Selections 2nd Round: 59th Overall - Alerick Soularie | Tennessee | Pos: OF You can read more about Alerick Soularie here. . 5th Round: 158th Overall - Kala'i Rosario | Waiakea HS, Hilo, HI | Pos: OF You can read more about Kala'i Rosario here. Read up on some of the other great draft coverage on Twins Daily 2020 MLB Draft Day 1 Thread Minnesota Twins Draft Preview First Round Busts: The Twins Struckout Three Consecutive Years Reviewing Minnesota’s Recent First-Round Picks What does MLB History Say About the 27th Pick? Mike Trout and 3 Other Stars the Twins Passed On in the MLB Draft How Should the Twins Strategically Approach the MLB Draft? MORE FROM TWINS DAILY — Latest Twins coverage from our writers — Recent Twins discussion in our forums — Follow Twins Daily via Twitter, Facebook or email Click here to view the article
  15. DRAFT SLOTS AND POOL Each draft pick has a specific dollar amount assigned to it, but it’s not as simple as just drafting a player in that spot and him getting all the dollars tied to the pick. The team and player can agree to any signing bonus and that money goes against the cap. As long as the entire draft class stays under the limit, there are no penalties. There are a few exceptions: If a player doesn’t sign, the team loses value assigned to that pick. For example, if the Twins fail to sign the first overall pick, their draft pool would be reduced to $6,386,100. Additionally, the cap for all picks for rounds 11-40 is $100,000. A team who signs a player for more than $100,000 will have the excess amount count against the cap. For example, if the Twins sign their 11th round pick for $600,000, $500,000 will count against the cap. 1st overall (round 1): $7,770,700 35th overall (comp round A): $1,935,300 37th overall (round 2): $1,846,100 76th overall (round 3): $755,500 106th overall (round 4): $507,000 136th overall (round 5): $378,700 166th overall (round 6): $283,300 196th overall (round 7): $220,700 226th overall (round 8): $174,400 256th overall (round 9): $148,000 286th overall (round 10): $137,100 UNDER CONSIDERATION As of today, there are a handful of names still being talked about as potential 1-1 candidates. We will go in depth on these players as the draft gets closer. But the list of names contains college arms righty Kyle Wright and lefty Brendan McKay, preps uberprospect Hunter Greene, shortstop/centerfielder Royce Lewis and pitcher Shane Baz, and college first baseman Pavin Smith. Handicapping the race to go first three weeks early probably has Wright in the lead as McKay fades. Greene, who hasn’t pitched in a game for over a month, and only threw 28 innings all year, remains an ultra-intriguing prospect, but is surrounded with question marks. Lewis has some questions about his bat, but is a premium athlete who oozes potential. Baz has as much helium as anyone in the draft and. Smith is a left-handed bat who plays first well defensively, but has some questions about his ability to hit left-handed pitching. DRAFT STRATEGIES Having the largest draft pool provides the Twins with some flexibility to get creative. But pump your brakes before your mind wanders too far. This isn’t going to be like the Correa/McCullers/Ruiz year or the Bregman/Tucker/Cameron year. The reason is simple: The rules changed. The Twins still have the pick worth the most, yes; but the value has been reduced (by almost $1.25 million) while picks 5-9 have all increased by over a million dollars. By bringing the values of these picks much closer together, it has narrowed the advantage in two ways. First, the team picking first, in this case the Twins, can’t just skim a million and a half off of their pick value and still be able to offer more than the second team could. And on the flip side of that, teams that pick after the Twins could get creative with their pools and be able to come up with more than the first pick value. That would have been very tough to do before. That doesn’t mean the Twins can’t still get creative. I anticipate they’ll still be able to save a considerable amount of money to turn a 6th round pick into a 2nd round value or an 11th or 12th round pick into a 5th round value (or something like that). The ability to get creative remains, but the chance to manipulate their pool into getting two Top 7 talents doesn’t. OTHER POTENTIAL TARGETS Two names that are intriguing in the 30s are Clark Schmidt, a right-handed pitcher from South Carolina who is missing the season after undergoing Tommy John surgery, and Seth Romero, a lefty who was kicked off the team at Houston. Both are first round talents and just might be worth the risk with that “extra” pick. The Twins drafted Tyler Benninghoff in the 11th round last year knowing that he’d need Tommy John surgery. And the Twins know Romero well, though it’s unclear whether or not he’ll make their final draft board. Some other names that should receive consideration: Heliot Ramos, a Puerto Rican outfielder, Jacob Heatherly, a prep lefty from Alabama, Brent Rooker, an outfielder from Mississippi State and Greg Deichmann, a third baseman from LSU. The Twins drafted both Rooker and Deichmann last summer. Though the draft is quickly approaching, many teams haven’t gotten a great read on contract demands yet and that doesn’t happen for many players until the final days before the draft. But the Twins have always been one of the best teams in the league at being able to gauge a player’s signability. Both Stephen Gonsalves and Kolton Kendrick are recent players to have dropped, and while many teams passed because of signability issues, the Twins were able to draft confidently because their area scouts did the work and knew the players would sign. Though their professional careers haven’t taken the same paths, the organization impressed many others with the homework they had done. And you better believe the Sean Johnson-lead scouting department will have all their homework done this year too.
  16. The Twins will draft 6th overall (and you already know this, man!) which has a slot value of $3,889,500. Because of the signing of pitcher Ervin Santana, the Twins had to forfeit their second round pick. They were, however, awarded a pick in the Compensation B Round (73rd overall) that has a value of $839,700. They will then go on to make eight selections on Tuesday and finish out the draft on Wednesday by making thirty more picks. From now until the draft, Twins Daily will be your home for a ton of draft coverage. We'll profile several of the players who the Twins could potentially draft as well as posting Mock Drafts and much more. Of course, we'll continue to cover the Minnesota Twins and lead the market with the best minor league coverage of the organization, but these next two weeks will certainly have a strong draft focus. We will be on top of the draft during the three days of the event. Join in on the discussion by commenting in our articles as well as posting in the forums. We are also happy to announce that for the second straight year, Twins Daily will be hosting a draft-related show while the Twins pick. Last year, we did a Hangout during the first five picks, followed by a radio spot from 9-10 pm. We’re dropping that. On June 8 from 7-8 pm, John Bonnes will host a draft show on KFAN. I’ll be fighting the traffic to join him in studio and we’ll have Seth Stohs on the show as well. Be sure to put that on your calendar. At some point in late June, we'll also be putting together a PDF-only Draft Prospect Handbook. It's going to be sick. And if you're draft-crazy, you won't be able to live without it. (Ok, that's hyperbole; but it will be great.) All told, it's going to be more Twins-draft related information than you could shake a stick at. So without further adieu, grab a water bottle, pop some popcorn and enjoy Twins Daily’s first-round mock draft: 1) Arizona: Dansby Swanson, SS, Vanderbilt 2) Houston: Daz Cameron, OF, Georgia HS 3) Colorado: Brendan Rodgers, SS, Florida HS 4) Texas: Dillon Tate, RHP, UC Santa Barbara 5) Houston: Alex Bregman, SS, LSU If those five guys are off the board when the Twins draft, it will leave them with a difficult decision. At this point in time, there is no chance that Swanson drops and a very slim chance that Rodgers falls. Tate has a slightly better chance to drop, but it’s unlikely the first five picks are all hitters and Tate is still the best college pitcher. The Twins love Bregman and - again - at this point, would love to see him drop to them. The Twins like Cameron, but don’t have any desire to meet his asking price. And, lastly, despite only one of the top five picks above being pitchers, there is a strong feeling around the industry that they “all want pitching” which could muddy this up even more. In this scenario, I would expect the decision to come down to Tyler Jay, LHP, Illinois and Kyle Tucker, OF, Florida HS. 6) Minnesota: Kyle Tucker, OF, Florida HS 7) Boston: Carson Fulmer, RHP, Vanderbilt 8) Chicago (AL): Tyler Jay, LHP, Illinois 9) Chicago (NL): Andrew Benintendi, OF, Arkansas 10) Philadelphia: Walker Buehler, RHP, Vanderbilt 11) Cincinnati: Jon Harris, RHP, Missouri State 12) Miami: Trenton Clark, OF, Texas HS 13) Tampa Bay: James Kaprielian, RHP, UCLA 14) Atlanta: Tyler Stephenson, C, Atlanta HS 15) Milwaukee: Kyle Funkhouser, RHP, Louisville 16) New York (AL): Garrett Whitley, OF, New York HS 17) Cleveland: Kolby Allard, LHP, California HS 18) San Francisco: Mike Nikorak, RHP, Pennsylvania HS 19) Pittsburgh: Ashe Russell, RHP, Indiana HS 20) Oakland: Donnie Dewees, OF, North Florida 21) Kansas City: Brady Aiken, LHP, IMG Academy 22) Detroit: Donny Everett, RHP, Tennessee HS 23) St Louis: Kevin Newman, SS, Arizona 24) Los Angeles (NL): Nathan Kirby, LHP, Virginia 25) Baltimore: Ian Happ, OF, Cincinnati 26) Los Angeles (AL): Phil Bickford, LHP, College of Southern Nevada So there you have it: Mock Draft v. 1. What do you think? If the Top 5 go like that, did the Twins do the right thing? Leave your thoughts below. And don't forget to check back frequently for new content.
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