Saturday, January 9, 2016

BA's Top 10 Twins prospects

The dead tree edition of Baseball America arrived in my mailbox Friday with Byron Buxton on the cover and the Top 10 prospects writeups for the AL Central teams inside. No link here because BA will roll the Twins stuff out online sometime next week.

The list:

  1. Buxton (CF)
  2. Jose Berrios (RHP)
  3. Max Kepler (OF-1B)
  4. Nick Gordon (SS)
  5. Tyler Jay (LHP)
  6. Jorge Polanco (SS-2B)
  7. Byung Ho Park (1B)
  8. Kohl Stewart (RHP)
  9. Stephen Gonsalves (LHP)
  10. Nick Burdi (RHP)

Buxton, who retained his rookie status for 2016 by two at-bats, was the obvious top choice; he's very likely to be BA's No. 1 overall prospect for the third straight winter when that list comes out in a few weeks. Nor are No. 2 or 3 -- Jose Berrios and Max Kepler -- startling selections. There are plenty of organizations for which either would be the headliner.

The list was compiled for BA by the Pioneer Press beat writer, Mike Berardino, A few comments on his rankings:

Gordon, who spent last year in low A, is above Polanco, who split 2015 between Double A and Triple A, this on the basis that Gordon is expected to stick at shortstop. I like both players, and I agree that Polanco is stretched as a shortstop. His problem right now, as for Berrios and Kepler, is the lack of obvious opportunity on the major league club.

Stewart, the No. 4 overall pick in 2013, the year the Cubs took Kris Bryant with the No. 3 pick, "slid" to No. 7 after seeing his strikeout rate decline in the Florida State League. Key sentence: "The Twins hope he'll start to miss more bats as he learns more about pitch sequencing."

Gonsalves, the Twins fourth-round pick in that draft, has essentially caught Stewart in the rankings. But Berardino figures Stewart will open 2016 in Double A while Gonsalves, who finished 2015 in high A Fort Myers, remains there for a few months.

Jay, college reliever, is likely to start in 2016, probably at Fort Myers. The Miracle figure to have some really interesting left-handed arms in the rotation this spring, with Gonsalves, Jay and Randy Rosario, who was added to the 40-man roster after a strong TJ-recovery season in Cedar Rapids. Of that trio, I assume Jay is both closest to the majors and has the highest ceiling but that Gonsalves is the most likely to be a major league starter.

No comments:

Post a Comment