Monday, November 19, 2012

Getting Eddie Rosario right

Eddie Rosario missed
seven weeks of 2012
after breaking a facial
bone but still hit .296
with 12 homers for
Eddie Rosario strikes me as a crucial test of the Twins farm system — a test of their abilities both as teachers and evaluators.

Rosario — fourth-round pick out of Puerto Rico in 2010, turned 21 in September — is a left-handed line drive machine who has displayed some power in the lower minors. Last winter, Baseball America rated him the system's No. 3 prospect; this winter he's No. 7.

Here's the issue: Although Rosario hit 21 homers in 2011 in the Appy League, he's not seen as a true power hitter. Baseball America last week labeled him the "best hitter for average" in the Twins farm system, but predicted he'll level off at 10 to 15 homers a year at higher levels.

Rosario was signed as an outfielder, but he lacks the speed to play center field, and he may lack the power for an outfield corner. Plus the Twins are loaded with outfield prospects (of the six players BA lists ahead of Rosario, three are outfielders, and another outfielder is right behind him at No. 8).

And as a second baseman, a position the Twins started converting him to about 13 months ago, he's at best a work in progress.

BA's conclusion: Rosario will stay in the infield as he moves up to high Class A. He's a bit of a tweener if he has to go back to the outfield, so the Twins will give him every chance to remain at second base.

This makes sense to me. If he's an outfielder, he's of limited use to the Twins. If he has limited power, he's unlikely to be a regular corner outfielder. His bat profiles well for second base, but he has to be able to handle the position defensively, and he hasn't established that he can.

The Twins have struggled over the years to develop quality middle infielders, however. That is not encouraging.


  1. Ed,
    Did you get a chance to see him on your minor jaunt last summer?

  2. That's where the photo came from. He played one of the two games I saw in Beloit, went hitless, had no real action on defense at second base.

  3. I am not sure that Rosario lacks the speed to play CF, it is just that there are several CF's in the Twins system who are as fast or faster with perhaps even better natural instincts for CF and better tools. Your basic point is correct, it is likely true that for Rosario to be useful to the Twins, he needs to stick at 2B. Otherwise, he would likely need to be traded at some point.

  4. I think he can be a Dustin Pedoria type second baseman.He might not be natural but he can still be really good.Also he'll hit good enough for second.He could be a left firlder.