Rounding out the AL Central Draft Reviews with the Minnesota Twins.
Minnesota Twins Draft Review
1) Alex Wimmers, RHP, Ohio State University: Perfect Twins pick. Solid fastball at 90-93, good breaking ball, best changeup in the draft, sharp control, athletic.
2) Niko Goodrum, SS, Georgia HS: Switch-hitter, lots of athleticism, good speed, should develop some power. Rather raw and will probably end up in the outfield, but I like him as tools guys go.
3) Pat Dean, LHP, Boston College: Strike-throwing lefty with 88-90 fastball, good assortment of breaking balls, but a history of some elbow problems this spring.
4) Eddie Rosario, OF, Puerto Rico HS: Unusually polished for a hitter from Puerto Rico, has some power potential, excellent strike zone judgment, draws constant Bobby Abreu comparisons. Would have gone two rounds higher if he' d had more exposure. Great pick.
5) Nate Roberts, OF, High Point University: Illinois high school product went to college down south. Roberts hit 19 homers, stole 36 bases, and drew 53 walks this year. He swings from the left side, and I think his tools are underrated due to his background.
6) Logan Darnell, LHP, University of Kentucky: Lefty with 90+ fastball, interesting slider and changeup, but a shaky track record in a pro-hitting environment. Might have a better chance against wooden bats.
7) Matt Hauser, RHP, University of San Diego: Senior closer with average velocity, but it works well due to sharp command of his splitter.
8) Lance Ray, OF-1B, University of Kentucky: Mixed track record, but has some potential as a power hitter.
9) Kyle Knudson, C, University of Minnesota: Defensive specialist, but lack of consistent hitting success kept him from earlier rounds. Profiles as backup.
10) J.D. Williams, SS, Florida HS: Good tools, somewhat raw, future position could be anywhere in the middle infield or outfield.
FOUR OTHERS OF NOTE: 12-Steven Maxwell, RHP, Texas Christian; 13-Ryan O'Rourke, LHP, Merrimack College; 14-DeAndre Smelter, RHP, Georgia HS; 18-David Gutierrez, RHP, University of Miami.
COMMENT: I like the early slots of this draft a lot: Wimmers, Goodrum, Rosario, and Roberts were all on my personal preference list, and offer a nice mixture of polish and tools. I have some concerns about Dean's health, and the later round picks are a bit spotty, but overall I think this is a solid effort. If they somehow convince Smelter to forgo Georgia Tech, they would add a high-upside arm as well, but my guess is that he's unsignable. All in all, a classic Twins list: polished pitchers, athletic hitters. I did a real-time Shadow Draft for the Twins, which I will analyze when all the real teams are done.