Minor League Keeper Thoughts: Minnesota Twins

CLEVELAND, OH - SEPTEMBER 25: Liam Hendriks #62 of the Minnesota Twins pitches against the Cleveland Indians during the first inning of their game on September 25, 2011 at Progressive Field in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by David Maxwell/Getty Images)

As we're now into the offseason, I will be taking a team-by-team look at some of the prospects in the system that could be of interest for those of you in keeper leagues. The goal with each team is to take a look at a few players who are likely to have an impact in the Majors in 2012, a few who could be ready by the start of 2014, and a few more who are a long ways away, but could be interesting as well. The hope is that each organization will have enough players to fit into these categories, but some of the systems aren't going to, in all likelihood. The next team up is the Minnesota Twins

Overview

The majority of the talent in the Twins' system remains at the lower levels, and is likely 2-3 seasons from contributing to a Major League club. There is a lot of high-end talent down in the low-A and below levels, but there are also some players who will aggravate the majority of fantasy owners regardless of when they reach the Majors, if they do.

Graduates

Ben Revere

Ready in 2012

Liam Hendriks

Year Age Lg W L ERA G GS IP H R ER HR BB SO WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB
2007 18 Rk 4 2 2.05 10 10 44.0 41 14 10 2 11 52 1.182 8.4 0.4 2.2 10.6 4.73
2009 20 A,Rk 5 5 3.55 14 14 83.2 92 42 33 3 16 75 1.291 9.9 0.3 1.7 8.1 4.69
2010 21 A+,A 8 4 1.74 19 18 108.2 79 26 21 2 12 105 0.837 6.5 0.2 1.0 8.7 8.75
2011 22 AA,AAA 12 6 3.36 25 24 139.1 137 56 52 5 21 111 1.134 8.8 0.3 1.4 7.2 5.29
2011 22 AL 0 2 6.17 4 4 23.1 29 16 16 3 6 16 1.500 11.2 1.2 2.3 6.2 2.67
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 11/11/2011.

 

Hendriks was called up at the end of the season, and made 4 starts at the Major League level for the Twins. The biggest thing that stands out with Hendriks is his control. He has not had a season above 2.3 BB/9, while still maintaining a strong strikeout rate. He seems like he is basically ready for the Majors, and will likely get a shot to try and prove he can be in the rotation. However, the team currently has 5 starters in Pavano, Liriano, Baker, Blackburn, and Duensing, so there isn't a rush to have him in Minnesota. It seems like there isn't a lot of upside to him at this point, and would only be worth owning in AL-only leagues or extremely deep keeper leagues.

Chris Parmelee

Year Age Lg G R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
2006 18 Rk,A 56 31 48 8 4 8 34 3 5 28 56 .273 .369 .500 .869
2007 19 A 128 56 107 23 5 15 70 8 4 46 137 .239 .313 .414 .727
2008 20 A 69 41 54 10 3 14 49 3 1 52 83 .239 .385 .496 .881
2009 21 A+ 123 61 109 27 1 16 73 2 2 65 109 .258 .359 .441 .800
2010 22 AA,A+ 133 60 140 27 3 8 61 3 3 56 81 .285 .356 .401 .757
2011 23 AA 142 76 152 30 5 13 83 0 1 68 94 .287 .366 .436 .801
2011 23 AL 21 8 27 6 0 4 14 0 0 12 13 .355 .443 .592 1.035
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 11/11/2011.

The key with Chris Parmelee in my opinion is this: He is likely going to have to make a position change, depending on the health of former MVP Justin Morneau. John Sickels over at Minor League Ball had this to say about Parmelee as a part of his top 20 Twins prospects for 2012:

He isn't going to hit .300+ in the majors, but I bet he can hit .260-.270 with moderate power and a good OBP. Not a star but should have a productive career.

Parmelee jumps out at me as one of those "better-in-real-life than fantasy" players. He looks like he could provide 15-20 homeruns with an average in the .260-.270 range as John suggested. For most fantasy owners, he's not really ownable. He could have some upside if it turns out that he gets full-time playing time, but it still would be in deeper leagues and AL-only leagues.

Joe Benson

Year Age Lg G R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
2006 18 Rk,A 60 32 56 11 5 5 29 10 10 21 47 .260 .329 .428 .757
2007 19 A 122 73 110 18 8 5 38 18 16 49 124 .255 .347 .368 .715
2008 20 A 69 39 63 16 3 4 27 17 11 24 73 .248 .326 .382 .708
2009 21 A+,Rk 82 47 76 10 3 5 29 15 8 48 74 .284 .414 .399 .813
2010 22 AA,A+ 123 81 119 31 8 27 62 19 9 47 136 .259 .343 .538 .881
2011 23 AA,Rk 114 71 116 29 4 16 67 14 10 58 111 .284 .387 .491 .879
2011 23 AL 21 3 17 6 1 0 2 2 2 3 21 .239 .270 .352 .622
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 11/11/2011.

 

Benson may have the best chance of the three to get full-time at bats, as there is an opening in right field for the Twins. John Sickels ranked Benson ahead of Parmelee this year, and had this to say about him:

Still fights the strike zone, could be a 20-15 player but could also struggle in batting average and OBP departments. 

Benson is the one to monitor as we get closer to the season, as he could be a deep league sleeper. If he earns a starting job in the spring, he should be owned in AL-only leagues, and seems to me like a 3rd or 4th outfielder in those leagues.

Could Be Ready by 2014

Kyle Gibson

Year Age Tm Lev W L ERA G GS IP H R ER HR BB SO WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB
2010 22 Fort Myers A+ 4 1 1.87 7 7 43.1 33 11 9 2 12 40 1.038 6.9 0.4 2.5 8.3 3.33
2010 22 New Britain AA 7 5 3.68 16 16 93.0 91 39 38 5 22 77 1.215 8.8 0.5 2.1 7.5 3.50
2010 22 Rochester AAA 0 0 1.72 3 3 15.2 12 5 3 0 5 9 1.085 6.9 0.0 2.9 5.2 1.80
2011 23 Rochester AAA 3 8 4.81 18 18 95.1 109 57 51 11 27 91 1.427 10.3 1.0 2.5 8.6 3.37
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 11/11/2011.

Gibson is currently recovering from Tommy John surgery, and is expected to miss the entire 2012 season. He could be a buy-low opportunity if you are rebuilding and a team that owns him is building for now. Otherwise, check back in 2013 on Gibson.

Long-Term Prospects (Won't Be Ready until At Least 2015)

Miguel Sano
Year Age Tm Lg G R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
2010 17 Twins DOSL 20 11 22 2 1 3 10 2 1 14 17 .344 .463 .547 1.009
2010 17 Twins GULF 41 23 43 14 0 4 19 2 2 10 43 .291 .338 .466 .804
2011 18 Elizabethton APPY 66 58 78 18 7 20 59 5 4 23 77 .292 .352 .637 .988
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 11/11/2011.

Sano is the prize of the system right now, and odds are that he's probably owned in your keeper league if he can be. He hit a ridiculous 20 home runs in just 66 games in the Appalachian League this season, and Kevin Goldstein had this to say about Sano:

The Good: Sano has pure 80 power, and he has the rare ability to showcase it in game situations. His ability to drive the ball out of any part of the park is also rare; he doesn't have to muscle up his swing, or even make full contact for the ball to go over the fence. His other plus tool is a very good arm.
The Bad: Sano has already grown considerably since signing, and he could end up a slow, one-dimensional slugger once he is physically mature. His swing gets long at times, and he'll need to hone his approach as he develops. He's a sluggish—if not downright sloppy—defender who made 26 errors in 64 games last year and is projected by most to end up in right field.
Sano has been playing 3B, and I believe that they will likely continue to try him at 3B until he absolutely proves he cannot play there. Realistically, Goldstein has mentioned on the Up and In podcast previously that he thinks Sano will end up in right field eventually. Regardless, the comparisons he has been drawing have been ridiculous.The hope though is that he doesn't manage to play his way into a DH-only role. Even if he does, it sounds like the bat will still play in the Majors. Realistically, he is still more than 2+ years away, but there's quite a bit to like here. He was the #60 prospect according to Baseball America, but seems like he is likely to be in the top 20 for this year.

Eddie Rosario
Year Age Tm Lg G R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
2010 18 Twins GULF 51 34 57 9 2 5 26 22 5 16 28 .294 .343 .438 .781
2011 19 Elizabethton APPY 67 71 91 9 9 21 60 17 6 27 60 .337 .397 .670 1.068
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 11/11/2011.

As amazing as the numbers Sano put up in, Rosario actually managed to put up even better numbers. He is a year older than Sano, but he was definitely still at an age-appropriate level. LaVelle Neal also noted that Rosario will be taking reps over at 2B as well, which could add even more to his value for fantasy purposes. Rosario is a long-term play as well, as he likely won't be ready until 2014 at the soonest. But you could have a potentially elite talent in your minor league system who looks like he has the potential to be a 20-20 player in the Majors.


Year Age Tm Lg G R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
2008 18 Twins GULF 45 32 55 10 4 4 27 12 2 28 32 .318 .409 .491 .900
2009 19 Beloit MIDW 67 43 63 15 3 4 29 10 8 40 55 .251 .353 .382 .735
2010 20 Beloit MIDW 115 86 118 27 6 8 49 21 11 88 112 .279 .401 .428 .829
2011 21 Fort Myers FLOR 122 79 107 31 5 5 38 17 9 78 110 .242 .354 .368 .722
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 11/11/2011.

Hicks may very well be the most frustrating player in the Twins's system right now. He had a great debut season, showing speed, a great batting eye, and the potential for power down the line. However, each season has gotten progressively worse each season. Odds are that he is probably owned in most dynasty leagues with any size of minor league system, but it's tough to see exactly when he will be ready to contribute at the big league level. 

This Year's Top Draft Picks

Not a ton to say about either of their first round picks, as neither made their professional debut in 2011. Here's what MLB Bonus Baby had to say about the two of them:

1     Levi Michael , SS , North Carolina

Michael could be an average MLB SS with a good eye, good bat and minimal power, maybe 10 HR's at his peak. He may not have the range to stay at SS but could handle 2B very well. He  will be a contributor at the big league level.

1s Travis Harrison , OF/3B , Tustin (Calif.) HS

Harrison was drafted as a 3B, could be athletic enough to play LF but is likely a 1B down the line. He could be a middle of the lineup power hitter with a .260-.270 average perenially.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

Join Fake Teams

You must be a member of Fake Teams to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Fake Teams. You should read them.

Join Fake Teams

You must be a member of Fake Teams to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Fake Teams. You should read them.

Spinner

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9351_tracker