Today we begin our major project for the off-season: the Top 20 Prospect Lists for 2015 for each major league organization. This is part of working on the 2015 Baseball Prospect Book; we will start taking pre-orders for the book next week and I will have an introductory post for the book at that time.
The first step is the yearly community organizational discussion, beginning with the Minnesota Twins. By tradition, the first three teams to be analyzed are the Twins, the Atlanta Braves, and the Kansas City Royals. After that, teams are selected basically on my whims, although we'll alternate between leagues, so a National League team will come after the Royals.
Basically, with this process you get to see how the sausage is made, both for the book and for the generation of the prospect lists per each organization. The process begins in October, then accelerates in November, December, and January, completing the lists here at Minor League Ball, then followed by the book release in February. Everything was delayed several months last year due to my health problems, but those are in the past now.
So let's get started today and talk about the Minnesota Twins farm system and the general state of the organization. Some possible points for discussion include, but are not limited to,
***It was another weak season at the big league level with the club going 70-92, costing Ron Gardenhire his managerial job. Not everything was bleak however: Phil Hughes proved to be an outstanding free agent acquisition, Kyle Gibson wasn't terrible, and rookies Danny Santana and Kennys Vargas were outstanding. What do you expect from Santana and Vargas in the coming years? Were they over their heads or is this just the beginning?
***It's a good thing that Santana and Vargas did well, because several key members of the pre-season top prospect group did not perform. Miguel Sano lost the year to Tommy John surgery, Byron Buxton was hurt almost all year, Eddie Rosario forgot how to hit, and Kohl Stewart ended the year with shoulder problems and an 88 MPH fastball. Who are the best bets to rebound?
***Pitchers Alex Meyer, Jose Berrios, and Trevor May all had strong campaigns. Are Meyer and May ready for full trials in 2015? How aggressive would you be with Berrios? And how fast will you push 2014 second-rounder Nick Burdi?
***As always, feel free to discuss sleepers or anything else related to Twins prospects.