Wednesday, April 8, 2015

My list of top Twins prospects

The past two springs I've compiled my own list of the top 15 Twins prospects. Such things usually come before the season, but I just didn't get around to it in March.

  1. Byron Buxton, outfielder
  2. Miguel Sano, third base
  3. J.O. Berrios, right-handed pitcher
  4. Kohl Stewart, right-handed pitcher
  5. Jorge Polanco, shortstop
  6. Nick Gordon, shortstop
  7. Eddie Rosario, outfielder
  8. Alex Meyer, right-handed pitcher
  9. Trevor May, right-handed pitcher
  10. Nick Burdi, right-handed pitcher
  11. Stephen Gonsalves, left-handed pitcher
  12. Max Kepler, outfielder-first baseman
  13. Lewis Thorpe, left-handed pitcher
  14. Jake Reed, right-handed pitcher
  15. Chih-Wei Hu, right-handed pitcher

Most everybody ranking the Twins prospects lumps Berrios, Meyer and Stewart together 3-4-5 or so. (Some lists break up the trio with Gordon). I'm downgrading Meyer because he's 25 and spent last year at Triple A and is still there.

I also differ from the pack in putting Polanco above Gordon. This is not a knock on Gordon, who was the fifth overall pick last summer and will open 2015 with Cedar Rapids, It is an acknowledgement of Polanco, who is two levels ahead of Gordon and appears to be convincing the organization that he can indeed play shortstop.

Thorpe is lower than on most lists because this list is later and I know what the earlier listers didn't: That the Aussie needed Tommy John surgery, I was tempted to knock him off the top 15 as a result. Hu is an idiosyncratic selection; I saw him last summer in Cedar Rapids and was impressed.

Guys I left off because I ran out of spaces: J.R. Graham, J.T. Chargois, Zach Jones (because I already had two high-end relief arms listed); Stuart Turner (he'll catch in the majors, but he won't hit enough to be a star and may not hit enough to be a regular); Adam Brett Walker (big-time power, but lacks command of the strike zone).

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