When he was left off the Beloit roster to open the season, many outside the organization felt it was a mistake. The top-30 prospect had one of the better short-season seasons in 2005, although an injury cut him down during the better part of the season. He still led the Gulf Coast League Twins in home runs (6), runs batted in (24), and slugging percentage (.610), despite playing in a percentage less games then most players on the team.
For Santiesteban, being honored as one of the top-30 players in the Twins' organization was a real honor, and one he is not taking lightly. He is also very proud that he was recognized as having the top outfield arm in the organization.
"To be ranked like this is a real honor, and it really feels awesome," Santiesteban told TwinCitiesDugout.com. "To be ranked up there with the rest of those guys is great, and for them to say that I have the best outfield arm in the organization, is another honor in itself. Being ranked like that is also motivation."
Coming off such an impressive season, Santiesteban may have been the only one who was not shocked that he was not placed in full-season ball for the first time. One of the hardest workers in the organization, Danny knows that hard work is the key to success.
"Basically I am using my time in Extended Spring Training to work on every aspect of my game," Santiesteban said. "I am trying to improve my baserunning, my hitting, my defense, and even my mental approach to the game."
Recently, Santiesteban has been on a tear, and is putting up the kind of numbers he did last season playing in the Gulf Coast League. Through his first 42 at-bats, he has driven in 13 runs so far this season, and hit his first home run of the year yesterday. He also has three doubles and a triple, but it is the runs batted in that really get him excited.
"The only thing I am expecting to do is drive in runs," Santiesteban told us. "RBIs, that is the name of the game."