2nd Preliminary Top 50 Minnesota Twins Prospects

20 Dec

also available at www.SethSpeaks.net

Hopefully in the very near future, the Twins Prospect Handbook will be available. My goal will be to have it available so that people can bring it to Twins Fest and get it signed by Twins prospects. We shall see. The recent struggles have certainly hurt the timeline, but I’m getting some great help and will try my best. Two months ago, I put together a preliminary Top 50 Prospect list. Since then, I’ve been getting more and more scouting reports, looking a little deeper at numbers and trying to learn as much as I can about each of the Twins prospects. With that, I’ll give you a second preliminary prospect list. There is some serious talent at the top of the list, but there are some players throughout this top 50 and a little beyond that, if things go right for them, you could see in a role with the Twins at some point in the future. Who knows, but definitely feel free to comment and discuss these rankings. Definitely let me know who I missed, who should be higher or lower, etc.

With that, here is my 2nd preliminary Minnesota Twins Top 50 Prospect ranking:

  1. Miguel Sano – 3B – Elizabethton Twins
  2. Eddie Rosario – OF – Elizabethton Twins
  3. Oswaldo Arcia – OF – Ft. Myers Miracle
  4. Joe Benson – OF – Minnesota Twins
  5. Aaron Hicks – OF – Ft. Myers Miracle
  6. Liam Hendriks – RHP – Minnesota Twins
  7. Kyle Gibson – RHP – Rochester Red Wings
  8. Alex Wimmers – RHP – Ft. Myers Miracle
  9. Chris Parmelee – 1B – Minnesota Twins
  10. Adrian Salcedo – RHP – Beloit Snappers
  11. Brian Dozier – SS – New Britain Rock Cats  
  12. Travis Harrison – 3B – Did Not Play
  13. Tom Stuifbergen – RHP – Rochester Red Wings
  14. Angel Morales – OF – Ft. Myers Miracle
  15. Chris Herrmann – C – New Britain Rock Cats
  16. Manuel Soliman – RHP – Beloit Snappers  
  17. Levi Michael – SS – Did Not Play
  18. Max Kepler – OF – Elizabethton Twins
  19. Niko Goodrum – SS – Elizabethton Twins
  20. Hudson Boyd – RHP – Did Not Play
  21. BJ Hermsen – RHP – Ft. Myers Miracle
  22. Danny Santana – SS – Beloit Snappers
  23. Madison Boer – RHP – Beloit Snappers
  24. Logan Darnell – LHP – New Britain Rock Cats
  25. David Bromberg – RHP – New Britain Rock Cats
  26. JD Williams – OF – Elizabethton Twins
  27. Terry Doyle – RHP – White Sox organization, Twins Rule 5 pick
  28. Jairo Perez – 3B – Beloit Snappers
  29. Matt Hauser – RHP – New Britain Rock Cats
  30. Pat Dean – LHP – New Britain Rock Cats
  31. Matt Summers – RHP – Elizabethton Twins
  32. Danny Rams – C – Ft. Myers Miracle
  33. Scott Diamond – LHP – Minnesota Twins  
  34. Angel Mata – RHP – GCL Twins
  35. Corey Williams – LHP – Elizabethton Twins  
  36. Danny Ortiz – OF – Beloit Snappers
  37. Carlos Gutierrez – RHP – Rochester Red Wings
  38. Nate Roberts – OF – Beloit Snappers
  39. Lance Ray – OF/1B – Beloit Snappers
  40. Deolis Guerra – RHP – New Britain Rock Cats
  41. Michael Gonzales – 1B – Beloit Snappers
  42. Lester Oliveros – RHP – Minnesota Twins
  43. Ryan O’Rourke – LHP – Beloit Snappers
  44. Hung-Yi Chen – RHP – GCL Twins
  45. James Beresford – SS – Ft. Myers Miracle
  46. Bobby Lanigan – RHP – New Britain Rock Cats
  47. Tyler Grimes – IF – Beloit Snappers
  48. Anderson Hidalgo – 3B – Ft. Myers Miracle
  49. Tim Shibuya – RHP – Elizabethton Twins
  50. Pedro Guerra – RHP – Beloit Snappers

JUST MISSED – Adam Bryant, Nick Lockwood, Rory Rhodes, Matt Bashore, Evan Bigley, Derek Christensen, Steven Gruver, Kuo-hua Lo.

I’m sure I missed others. Let’s discuss. Please feel free to ask questions and leave comments. Final stages of the book development, so help me out!!


50 Responses to “2nd Preliminary Top 50 Minnesota Twins Prospects”

  1. David December 21, 2011 at 7:37 am #


    Isn’t Rosario moving to 2B?

    Fun to dream about everybody fulfilling their potential and constituting the following lineup (positional, not batting order) in 2015:

    C–Chris Herrmann
    1B–Chris Parmalee
    2B–Eddie Rosario
    3B–Miguel Sano
    SS–Brian Dozier
    LF–Oswaldo Arcia
    CF–Aaron Hicks
    RF–Joe Benson
    DH–Joe Mauer

    Bench–Levi Michael, Travis Harrison, Danny Rams, Ben Revere

    Starting Pitching:

    1–Mark Appel (1st-round pick, 2012)
    2–Kyle Gibson
    3–Liam Hendricks
    4–Alex Wimmers
    5–(LH to be determined)

    • Seth December 21, 2011 at 5:14 pm #

      Yes, Rosario will get time at 2B this next year and they’ll see how it goes. I probably should have put OF/2B

    • John December 22, 2011 at 10:10 am #

      Kind of interesting you leaving Tyler Robertson out of the top 50. he was just named to the 40 man and had a real good season with new britain. he is scheduled to start in AAA next season. just curious as to why you left him off the top 50?

      • Seth December 22, 2011 at 9:38 pm #

        I don’t rank relievers as high as starters, not even close. Very solid year in relief, but not much fastball velocity and doesn’t miss bats. Likely a LOOGY. had to have a guy who will likely throw 40 IP in a season too high.

        Note – that doesn’t mean that I don’t understand the value of left-handed reliever, just hard to see 40 IP as highly as 170+ innings of a starter.

  2. John December 21, 2011 at 7:55 am #

    Why is Levi below Harrison? Safe to say Levi was a reach when his upside is only Denny Hocking?

    • drjim December 21, 2011 at 8:12 am #

      Levi shouldn’t be below Dozier. Seth, what have you heard about Michael that keeps you as low on him? I would have him 6 or 7 on this list.

      • Seth December 21, 2011 at 5:17 pm #

        I don’t see a ton of upside, little power, questionable defense and probably a 2B… but he didn’t even play in instructional leagues, so if he comes out this year, jumps to Ft. Myers and dominates, then he can move ahead of Dozier, who may not have upside and pop but is probably big-league ready.

        I also still hold a grudge for Michael holding out for so long, but maybe the injuries had a lot to do with that.

    • Seth December 21, 2011 at 5:15 pm #

      I think Harrison’s power potential is way more exciting than Michael’s scrappiness.

  3. DH in Philly December 21, 2011 at 8:45 am #

    Seriously? People are calling Levi a reach before he even gets on the field? If I were smart, I would read the posts and ignore the comments altogether.

    Sorry for the diatribe. Seth – this is a great list, well thought out, and consistent with your previous comments. Thanks again for all the work you put in for your readers.

    Happy Holidays.

    • Seth December 21, 2011 at 5:18 pm #

      Most “experts” think that the Twins got a steal with Michael at 30. I recall guys like Keith Law and BA and others saying he was probably a 18-22 talent, so they did well to get him.

      Thanks and happy Holidays to you and yours as well!

  4. Jeff December 21, 2011 at 9:02 am #

    Will Beloit be stacked or what in 2012? Sano, Rosario, Kepler…basically the Elizabethton roster from last year?

    • Seth December 21, 2011 at 5:19 pm #

      It’s likely a lot of those guys will be up, although an argument could be made for Kepler to go back to E-Town. But Goodrum and JD Williams and then pitchers like Summers and Gruver and Boer again. Should be fun to watch.

  5. Jeff P December 21, 2011 at 9:57 am #

    Interesting to see who the big movers are since the 1st list that was on Oct 14th because other that some added AFL games, there was not any on the field action. A few big movers based on a quick scan:

    Levi Michael: 26 to 17
    Madison Boer: 15 to 23
    Carlos Guitierrez: 27 to 37 (wow, not long ago he was a pretty good relief prospect)
    Danny Rams: off the list to 32 (maybe a miss before?)

    • Seth December 21, 2011 at 5:21 pm #

      Rams was a miss before. I don’t think that the AFL games have much to do with it. Like I said, in the last two months, I’ve read a lot on each of these guys, from a lot of people very close to them and learned more and more. Also, if I believe Boer will most likely wind up in the bullpen, I can’t rank him as high as if I think he’ll be a starter. If he was a starter, he’d be borderline top 10-12. Gutierrez remains a good relief prospect, but he’ll need to stay healthy and walk fewer batters.

  6. mike wants wins December 21, 2011 at 9:58 am #

    I too thought Rosario was moved to 2B. While you list Benson and Hendriks and Parmalee as on the Twins, it sounds almost 100% certain they are in AAA next year, which is no surprise. I’m assuming that in the book, you’ll project where these guys will all start next year, and where you think the’ll end the year. Hicks continues to be a puzzle to me. Super high upside, but it still hasn’t shown in production. I’m not sure I’d put anyone above him that is below him, but he’s tumbling fast as a prospect right now (which makes me sad, I still have hope for a turn around). You seem, by your ranking, to have regained confidence in Wimmers. I thought maybe, just maybe, you’d have him and Salcedo switched until we see more of him.

    anyway, happy holidays, glad you are feeling better

    • Twinsoholic December 21, 2011 at 10:08 am #


      You forgot (I’m going to assume) Tyler Robertson. He did very well at AA last year after starting a bit slow. He was added to the 40 man roster, and I would put him somewhere in the top 20 prospects.

    • Seth December 21, 2011 at 5:24 pm #

      I list the highest level they played at in 2011. All three will almost certainly start the season in Rocheter.

      I can’t give up on hicks at all. Talent is just so high. Confidence and opportunity will be huge. Also, he doesn’t need to be added to the 40 man roster until after the 2012 season, so the team can and should be patient with him. His defense and arm alone make him a future big leaguer… how the offense comes along will determine how good he can be. Very impressive AFL showing all-around.

      I believe in Wimmers. Came a long way back this year. Basically a missed year. As mentioned on the Gleeman and the Geek podcast I was on, we’ll know early if he’s over his control issues. I also really, really like Salcedo and want to see how he fills out. He’s got that Ubaldo Jimenez build.

  7. Han Joelo December 21, 2011 at 10:14 am #

    Nice list, Seth. Should Pedro Guerra be a bit higher?

    I just posted a comment on the Twinkietown prospect ranking thread regarding Goodrum/Kepler, the gist being I feel the voters are either voting for Kepler too high or Goodrum too low, as they have similar numbers and upside. Your slotting is about right, and either one of them could really make a move. Especially if Kepler can play CF (Rosario at 2b) at Beloit, and if Goodrum can start cutting down on errors at SS.


    • Seth December 21, 2011 at 5:27 pm #

      Pedro Guerra should probably be a little bit higher. his K-rate in Beloit is really good, although he’s never been a huge K guy. Kind of repeated his 2010 in 2011, and I was hoping to see a little more. He’s more short and stocky, so he’ll likely never profile as a top prospect. Try to picture Juan Rincon. similar build. Hopefully similar big league production.

      Good call on Goodrum versus Kepler, although Kepler is still younger. Goodrum has the world of talent, and if he adds some size, he can be very good. Kepler just looks so natural, just needs to play. Had a nice showing in the World Cup. Both so talented but so young!

  8. lew December 21, 2011 at 10:18 am #

    Beloit will definitely be stacked but Spring Training will be an all out war for position spots between Beloit and Ft Myers, especially in the middle infield. Think about it, Goodrum, Lockwood, Michael, Bryant, Santana, Rosario (maybe in the infield), Santana….That is who I consider the best of the group and it still leaves others out of that list. Either some of these guys are trade bait or a lot of good players could be released this year.

    • Seth December 21, 2011 at 5:29 pm #

      Very good point. It was something I noticed that there are a lot of infielders with some talent in the lower levels. I’d guess, as of today:

      Ft. Myers – Michael, Grimes and Santana
      Beloit – Lockwood, Rosario, Bryant, and Pettersen
      E-Town – wouldn’t be surprised to see Goodrum start in EST and called up when needed.

      I’m assuming Beresford to New Britain also?

      • lew December 22, 2011 at 9:29 am #

        I think that you have the layout picked pretty well. Depends on the Santana experiment in the outfield and the Rosario experiment in the infield. I think Rosario spends maybe a month in Beloit and moves to Ft Myers similar to Arcia this year. I think the battle here is for the older college guys. Peterson will have to have a huge spring training to stick around. If he doesnt, expect to see Goodrum and Lockwood staying together another year in the middle in Beloit.

  9. Allan December 21, 2011 at 11:06 am #

    Seth, maybe it is only wishful thinking on my part, but the successful transformation of Deolis Guerra from starter to reliever suggests that he has found his niche. Numbers are hard to ignore. My list would have Mr. Guerra at a more lofty position than you currently slot him.

    • Seth December 21, 2011 at 5:42 pm #

      This is more of a function of where I tend to rank relievers than anything. he’s probably the 3rd or 4th ranked RP. I was very impressed by what he did. He touches 92 and his changeup is great. I now just want to see him do it at AAA. he is still the youngest member of the Twins 40 man roster!

  10. Crapshoot December 21, 2011 at 11:28 am #

    Beloit will struggle like the always do. Each year they get a ton of “prospects” from a stron E-town team. And each year most of those guys struggle mightily at Beloit…Waltenbury, Morales, Bigley, Deibinson Romero, Ozzie Lewis and many many more.

    Look for Niko to struggle…Rosario will hit, with many doubles but far fewer HR’s. Sano will hit some bombs but will likely bat around .240 for quite a while. And magically the Beloit team that everyone projects to be so awesome…will wimper out of the gate and play sub .500 ball …happens every year.

    • Seth December 21, 2011 at 5:45 pm #

      There are plenty of examples. One thing to look at, the age of the players who put up dominant numbers in E-Town. Morales was young, Sano, Arcia, Rosario, Goodrum, Kepler… it’s no surprise that they would then struggle adjusting to the Midwest League where there will be a lot of college guys, a couple of years older than them.

      I can’t argue with anything you’ve said above. I’ll be honest, I don’t care how the team does, but I do think that the development of the young players is exciting. Also, Brian Dozier was ‘older’ for the Appy League, and he has still managed to work his way up the ladder. So, I agree. there will be struggles and probably a .500 record, but the record means nothing to me. Just want to see how the players adjust.

  11. peterb18 December 21, 2011 at 11:37 am #

    I’ve only seen a few players on the top six list. Joe Benson and Liam Hendricks are questionable as to how high of a level they can achieve. Benson has all the tools, but can he transform it to the game day? He seems a bit out of control. He also reminds me of a hockey player who can shoot, skate,etc. but has trouble when the game starts. As far as Hendricks is concerned, I’m not impressed. I doubt if he will be much better than Slowey. Hope I’m wrong!

    • Seth December 21, 2011 at 5:50 pm #

      Well, I would say that Benson’s numbers the last two years have been as good or better than anyone else in the organization, so I would say that he definitely shows up at game time! it’s his seemingly out of controlness that makes him exciting, that will get him in trouble and that could make him a star.

      You got a lot out of seeing Hendriks make four September starts? I wasn’t necessarily impressed, but he was 1.) nervous/excited, 2.) he had already thrown 145+ innings in the minors. He didn’t have his great control, but I saw a guy who sits 89-91 and touched 93. An inconsistent, but good curveball, and a very good (at times) changeup. He’s also a guy who shouldh ave spent the whole season at AA. So, I make nothing (good or bad) about his 4 big league starts. His intangibles are off the chart too.

  12. Keli December 21, 2011 at 1:25 pm #

    I would be happy if Hendricks is as good as Slowey, especially the pre-surgery Slowey. I think people’s expectations of a #6 prospect are sometimes too high. If our #6 consistently turns into Slowey rather than Matt Moses, we’ll be okay!

    Also, Hendricks most significant attribute is demonstrated by the fact that he has accomplished two things Slowey has never done… make >27 starts or pitch >161 innings in a season.

    • mike wants wins December 21, 2011 at 2:37 pm #

      Agreed, if Hendriks is as good as Slowey was before the injury and the team soured on him for no obvious reason, I’d be happy. Slowey was a 3/4….and any team should be thrilled with that quality a pitcher.

      • Seth December 21, 2011 at 5:52 pm #

        I think that Hendriks’ upside is a healthy Scott Baker, and that’s a pretty decent #2 guy. Slowey was pretty good before surgery but he really had just great control of one pitch. Hendriks has three. That said, Slowey was 39-21 before last year which means, he was a pretty solid pitcher, even if he got all the run support.

  13. peterb18 December 21, 2011 at 4:16 pm #

    Sorry Keli & Mike—but, I think Slowey on a good team is nothing more than a boarderline 5. In today’s game if your not a hard thrower you need a signature pitch. Slowey did not have an out pitch. Without an out pitch–your control has to pinpoint–hard to do on a regular basis.

    • mike wants wins December 21, 2011 at 5:07 pm #

      That’s a fair opinion, we just disagree. And thanks for disagreeing politely, it makes it more fun to come here.

  14. Ben H. December 21, 2011 at 9:31 pm #

    Will Brad Tippett be mentioned in the 2012 handbook? I know he was released by the Twins in June 2011, but it would be nice to have an easy reference for the reason(s) he was let go. He was highly regarded a few seasons ago.

    Speaking of Australian pitchers, there’s a righy named Warwick Saupold (Jan 1990) who is pitching very well in the Australian Baseball League this season. I’d like to see him join Beloit or Ft. Myers in 2012. http://tinyurl.com/warsau

    • Seth December 22, 2011 at 9:45 pm #

      I was a fan of Tippett too. Tremendous numbers in the low levels. Then got hurt, and unfortunately wasn’t able to come back. I was disappointed that the Twins let him go so quickly. Terrific person too!

      But, there are so many players from year to year that are let go. It’d be hard to get them all updated with reasons.

  15. mike wants wins December 21, 2011 at 11:19 pm #

    Jason Marquis? Really?

  16. ricky December 22, 2011 at 1:18 am #

    i like grimes and bryant but they’ll probably just be utility types? Wang-wei Lin I also like..
    I bet Javier Pimentel will climb up that list

    • Seth December 22, 2011 at 9:48 pm #

      Pimentel definitely has the siz and potential to move up the list, for sure. I just coudln’t quite put him on the Top 50 yet. I would guess he’ll be quite a ways up in a year.

      Bryant seems to profile more as a utility type. Very solid at three infield positions. But he’s got some bat too, I’d say. As a four year college guy, he’ll have to move semi-quickly, but we’ve seen Dinkelman and Dozier do it.

      Grimes is a 5th rounder. Sure, maybe that means eventually he’ll be autility guy, but at this point, no need to consider him a part-timer. He’s got some talent.

  17. Ned December 22, 2011 at 6:51 am #

    Do Plouffe, Hughes, and Tosoni no longer count as “prospects”?

    • Seth December 22, 2011 at 9:48 pm #

      All are over the 130 at bat limit.

  18. Shane Wahl December 22, 2011 at 10:50 am #

    Pretty hard to argue with much of this at all. It’s hard to project the new players who haven’t played a game in the system. You are pretty high on Daniel Santana and Terry Doyle and probably low on the Guerras. And is Tyler Robertson a miss?

  19. Shane Wahl December 22, 2011 at 11:07 am #

    A few things: what is the minor league system equivalent talent and competition-wise to, say, the top 50 NCAA Division I teams? I was thinking it was probably high-A?

    I see you think Levi Michael is likely headed to FTM (unless he is terrible in spring training), but what about Travis Harrison (likely at 1B instead of 3B) and Hudson Boyd? EST and ELZ for both?

    Any chance more Michael Gonzalez jumps a level to New Britain!? I know that is doubtful, but he seemed stuck in Beloit last year for *no good reason*.

    I would like to see Kepler post a .800+ OPS in ELZ before moving him up to Beloit. Maybe if players start moving up in July, he could move to Beloit after 6 weeks or so in ELZ, but there is no need to rush him, especially with a logjam in the outfield could mean reduced playing time at more advanced levels.

    • Seth December 22, 2011 at 10:11 pm #

      I’d guess more like Low A as only the best players jump up to Hi-A.

      I would assume Harrison and Boyd go to Elizabethton, but wouldn’t be shocked if they go to GCL Twins either.

      No, Gonzales will not jump to New Britain. It was best for him to get the extra time in Beloit. He’ll move up to Ft. Myers, and hopefully continue to progress.

      I wouldn’t be surprised if Kepler stays in EST, but also wouldn’t be surprised if he never plays for ETown and jumps to Beloit before the short-season starts.

  20. Shane Wahl December 22, 2011 at 11:11 am #

    that should say “poor” Michael Gonzalez.

  21. Rich December 22, 2011 at 6:44 pm #

    I was just wondering if Danny Lehmann was a “miss”?

    • Seth December 22, 2011 at 10:12 pm #

      No, but I’m also baffled by the Twins bringing in Towles and Rivera again. Lehmann is tremendous defensively and hits just as well as any of them. He knows the pitchers well and has their trust. He deserves an opportunity.

  22. Shane Wahl December 24, 2011 at 5:25 pm #

    Thanks for the reply, Seth. That all makes sense.

    What does not make sense is how this organization utilizes its catchers. Lehmann at least could provide .600+ OPS. He at least deserves a chance to do that. It is *known* that Drew Butera and Rene Rivera cannot do that. And the defensive prowess is probably close enough, that it isn’t a downgrade there. I just don’t understand it. Mauer-(Doumit)-Lehmann-Herrmann should be the pecking order. Butera, Rivera, and Towles stand in the way. Maybe Butera could stick around Rochester to help the pitchers as they come up, but that is all!


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