Wouldn’t it be great to talk about the week that was for the Minnesota Twins? I know I would love to, but we’d only have four games to talk about. Granted, the Twins are 4-0 in that span, but thanks to weather and off-days the big league club didn’t get too many contests in.
Down on the farm, though, a lot of ball was played. So let’s check in on some of the top farm hands and see what they did over this past week from April 15-21.
We’ll see who’s hot, who’s not and all the things that happen down on the farm. So expect a lot of hog talk, folks.
Stats over the seven-day period come directly from Minor League Baseball’s player profile pages; you can find those over at MiLB.com.
Is this a shock to anybody in Twins Territory?
Miguel Sano has been the talk of the town since he joined the organization, and there’s good reason. Simply put, Miguel Sano is the third baseman of the future. Currently, he is on the Fort Myers Miracle in Advanced Single-A Ball, where the team is on fire with a 14-3 record thus far this season.
Over the past week, Sano has been playing like an organization’s top prospect should— amazingly good. In the seven games, he hit .357 with three home runs, eight RBI and four walks.
If you really want to look at how good Sano is, check out his on-base percentage and slugging percentage: .419 and .798, respectively.
Just down the road in Cedar Rapids, the Twins' new Single-A affiliate, the Kernels have the best center fielder in the Twins organization right now in Byron Buxton. The Kernels' leadoff man is impressing so far in 2013 and is part of the reason the Twins' future looks so bright.
The past week has led to a week full of singles for Buxton, who had eight hits, six of which were singles. Throughout the week, he also walked five times and stole three bases, which are two great qualities to have in a leadoff man.
Buxton’s average over the past week was a very nice .389 with an on-base percentage of .533, meaning he gets on the basepaths over half of the time.
Now, wouldn’t that be nice to have right in front of Joe Mauer?
It’s not only the third baseman of the Fort Myers Miracle that Twins fans should be excited about, but also the second baseman—Eddie Rosario. The two pair up to make a very deadly one-two punch in the middle of the Miracle lineup for first-year manager Doug Mientkiewicz.
Over the past week, Rosario has hit .329, including three walks, one home run and six RBI. That’s a good week, but looks so underwhelming after the past two prospects.
If the Twins can just hold out for a year or two more of .500 ball, or at least hopefully near-.500 ball, soon the reinforcements will be here. With probably the only thing left of the current Twins team being hometown boy Joe Mauer.
Oswaldo Arcia had an interesting week as he only played in four ballgames. At the beginning of the week he made his major league debut and then was sent back down to Triple-A. Before you know it, he was called right back up. Since his return to the Twins, the squad has only played in two games.
What I’m saying is that it’s not fair to make any judgment on Arcia’s past week, because he obviously hasn’t had much of a past week.
During the past seven days, Arcia appeared in three games with the Twins, only getting one hit in nine at-bats to drop his current major league average to .111. A solitary walk against the White Sox on Sunday was the other highlight of his week at the major league level.
In his one game at Triple-A with the Rochester Red Wings, Arcia hit a single, stole a base and struck out once.
This upcoming week may be a better one to judge Arcia’s skills at the major league level. The Twins have a doubleheader now scheduled for Tuesday, an off-day on Wednesday and a four-game weekend series with Texas at Target Field, where the predicted high for Saturday is 70 degrees.
To put that in contrast, it’s currently snowing outside my window in Minneapolis. Monday it snows, Saturday we need shorts and sandals. That’s Minnesota.
If Danny Santana was a stock, I wouldn’t have bought or sold him this past week. No, I would have just hung on for the ride. He’s a top prospect and hasn’t been nearly horrible enough to sell.
Thus far this season, the shortstop for the Double-A New Britain Rock Cats has an average of .250, and over the past week he hit higher than that mark with an average of .276.
Nothing else from the week has been too exceptional to note: eight hits, four runs scored, two RBI, one double and one triple.
Keep Santana on your mind, Twins fans. He’ll be the shortstop of the future finishing off an infield with Sano, Rosario and probably Joe Mauer over at first.
William Joseph Benson is better known as Joe Benson, but I really question why he’s not Bill Benson or Billy Benson, that is quite the ballplayer’s name. Regardless, Benson hasn’t had a great season so far, and if you followed the spring training center field batter, then you’re probably not surprised.
On the season, Benson is hitting .170. Over the past week he hit .178, and that’s really only because of two pretty good games. Benson had a 3-for-4 on Monday and 2-for-4 on Saturday, but in his other five games for the week he didn’t get a single hit.
During that time span he only walked once, but he did strikeout seven times. It’s not looking good for Joe at Triple-A Rochester, or really anywhere for that matter.
Buy, buy, buy!
If you want some hot stock, look at Alex Meyer of the Double-A New Britain Rock Cats. The 6’9” righty has a 1.69 ERA in three starts so far this season for the Rock Cats with a total of 19 Ks. He’s only given up 13 hits all season long.
Meyer only pitched in one game over the past week and it was a gem. In six innings of work on Thursday, he only gave up one hit, four walks and struck out five in his first victory of the season.
Opponents are only hitting .217 for the season off of Meyer so far. The list of stats can go on and on.
Let’s just say if you are excited for Miguel Sano from the offensive side of the ball, get a little jacked for Meyer’s skills of dealing the ball.
Can your stock be anything but up if you’ve only given up five runs in three starts so far this season?
That’s the question that instantly ran through my mind when I looked at the stat sheet of Trevor May, and my theory is that your stock can only be up.
In those three starts so far with the New Britain Rock Cats, May does have a record of 0-1, but that loss came in a game where he only gave up one run. Suddenly I see a pattern for the Twins organization.
May only pitched in one game this past week and pitched a nice ballgame. On Tuesday, he gave up two runs on six hits and four walks, along with a season-high eight strikeouts.
A weird stat that is more a fluke than anything: In every game May has pitched this season he has given up one home run. That’s really just an interesting stat at the beginning of the season. If it’s that way in July, we may have a problem.
Gibson didn’t have a phenomenal week, but neither did he have a horrible week. Kyle Gibson is just slightly down because of his season as a whole so far, and I’ve used my one cop-out neutral pick of the week.
In Gibson’s fight to come back from Tommy John surgery, he currently has a 4.43 ERA for the Rochester Red Wings, which isn’t horrible but also isn’t exactly where he should be, either.
This past week, Gibson pitched in two games and tallied two losses to his resume, but his start last Tuesday doesn’t reflect his performance for that night.
He pitched a very solid six innings that night, in which he only allowed one run on four hits and two walks. Obviously, Gibson needed a little more run support on Tuesday, but that can be said about a lot of the Red Wings, who currently have a 5-12 record.
Gibson’s start on Sunday wasn’t horrendous by any means. Three runs on three hits and four walks, but again not a lot of run support in a 1-8 loss to the hands of Pawtucket.
So Gibson is slightly down, and I mean slightly. If the Red Wings could have pumped across another run or two, he would look so much better.
Top prospect No. 10 for the Minnesota Twins hasn’t appeared in a game yet. Who is that prospect? Well, it really depends on who you ask.
Max Kepler, an outfielder in rookie ball as a member of the Elizabethton Twins is intriguing. So is relief pitcher J.T. Chargois, but he is also a member of the Elizabethton Twins, who don’t play their first game until June 20.
That means right-handed pitcher Jose Berrios clearly makes the top-10, but he has yet to pitch for the Cedar Rapids Kernels this season. His debut is scheduled for Monday, April 22.