Top 50 Twins Prospects

Here are the Top 50 Twins' prospects. TwinCitiesDugout.com gives a little insight on each selection in our rankings but will follow up more in-depth with individual scouting reports on each player throughout this offseason, starting in descending order.

1. Matt Garza, SP: Garza made a rapid rise through the Twins organization this season, and is the consensus choice for the number one prospect in the Twins organization. He began the year at Fort Myers, but by the end of the season, he was a member of the Minnesota Twins starting rotation. Armed with an explosive fastball, Garza will be a mainstay in the Twins rotation for many years.

2. Kevin Slowey, SP: Like Garza, Slowey also turned a lot of heads during the 2006 season. Consistently ranked as a hot prospect by Baseball America, Slowey was the Pitcher of the Game in the Florida State League All-Star Game, and shined after being called up to Double-A New Britain. Slowey led the Twins organization with a 1.88 earned run average.

3. Alexi Casilla, INF: Stolen from the Angels in exchange for J.C. Romero, Casilla was one of the better middle infielders in both the Florida State League and the Eastern League this season. His whirlwind season culminated with an invite to join the Minnesota Twins for their playoff push, where he showed that he may be ready to be a starter in the Major Leagues right now.

4. Anthony Swarzak, SP: A tale of two seasons for Swarzak, who turned himself back into a top starting pitching prospect in the Twins organization. After struggling in the first half of the season, Swarzak settled into the role of staff ace when Slowey and Garza were promoted, and pitched some of the best games in the FSL this past season. His 11 wins were tied for fourth-best in the system.

5. Eduardo Morlan, SP: This kid continues to excite Twins fans, who are already expecting great things from the young right-hander. Morlan struck out 125 batters in only 106.1 innings of work this season for the Beloit Snappers, as he was used in both the rotation, and the bullpen. He also posted a 1.15 earned run average as a reliever.

6. Glen Perkins, SP: Twins fans got a taste of Perkins towards the end of the season, and the young left-hander did not disappoint. He could be slated for a role with the Twins to start the season in 2007, though most signs point to him beginning the year with the Rochester Red Wings. Perkins was fifth in the system with 134 strikeouts in 2006.

7. Christopher Parmelee, OF: Parmelee was the Twins first round selection in 2006, and the young outfielder made his presence felt in his first season with the organization. After blasting a home run in his first professional at-bat, Parmelee would go on to receive a promotion to Low-A Beloit, where he is likely to start the 2007 season. In the GCL, Chris smacked eight home runs in 45 games.

8. David Winfree, 3B: After leaving the organization for personal reasons, Winfree came back with a vengeance, turning himself into perhaps the top third base prospect in the organization. The sweet-swinging slugger is currently playing in the Arizona Fall League, after finishing out the regular season with nine home runs in 35 games.

9. Brandon Roberts, CF: What a steal this kid was. Roberts batted .315 after joining the Twins organization, and stole 27 bases in only 71 games. A Florida State League All-Star, Roberts came over from the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for Kyle Lohse, and the Twins could not be happier that they made that deal.

10. J.D Durbin, RHP Durbin had his season cut short by injury once again in 2006, but he has the stuff to be a starting pitcher in the Major Leagues one day. He is out of options, so Spring Training is going to be huge for him. With how hard he throws the ball, the Twins are hoping he is up for the challenge.

11. Denard Span, CF: Span had a so-so year for the New Britain Rock Cats, showing signs of brilliance, but also signs of weakness. Still, he is one of the top outfield prospects in the Twins organization, and he finished fourth in the organization with 24 stolen bases. He batted .285 for the Rock Cats, including a .331 mark at home, and is currently playing in the Venezuelan Winter League, where he is batting .290.

12. Kyle Waldrop, SP: Waldrop began the year in Beloit, where he posted six wins in his 18 starts, including a complete game. From there, Waldrop was promoted to High-A Fort Myers, where he had a nice 3.57 earned run average in eight appearances. Overall, his 3.77 earned run average was the ninth best mark in the organization.

13. Alexander Smit, LHP: Smit was used as both a starter and a reliever in 2006, and he struck out batters by the plenty. He racked up 141 strikeouts in 2006, good for third best on the team, and reached double-digits in strikeouts in four of his 13 starts. Overall, he posted a 2.99 earned run average for the Snappers.

14. Matthew Moses, 3B: It was another tough season for the former first round selection, as he struggled as a member of the New Britain Rock Cats for the second straight year. He is a work in progress, and he does have time to develop into the player that the Twins hope he will become. He is currently batting .266 in the Arizona Fall League.

15. Trent Oeltjen, OF: Talk about a great season. Oeltjen was the only member of the Twins organization to play in the Future Stars Game, and he really established himself as one of the better players in the Twins organization. After batting .299 for the New Britain Rock Cats, Oeltjen is currently a member of Aguilas of the VWL, and he is batting .400 through three games.

16. Erik Lis, 1B/LF: Lis was the top batter in the Twins organization this past season, and many wonder why he was not promoted to High-A Fort Myers throughout the season. He batted an organizational-best .326 for the Beloit Snappers, and finished fourth in the system with 16 home runs.

17. Oswaldo Sosa, SP: After posting nine wins in 20 starts for the Beloit Snappers, Sosa was promoted to High-A Fort Myers, making his first start for the Miracle on August 4. He would end up going 4-1 in his four starts for the Miracle, posting a tiny 2.08 earned run average. He finished the year 13-8, and his 2.60 earned run average were third-best in the system.

18. Paul Kelly, INF: Kelly may have established himself as the best shortstop in the Twins organization in 2006, although an injury cut his season short at the end of July. Still, at the time of his injury he was batting .280 for the Beloit Snappers, and had driven in 48 runs in 95 games. He was also a member of the Midwest League All-Star Team.

19. Brock Peterson, 1B: Not many sluggers put together better seasons than Brock Peterson in 2006, as the first baseman tied Garrett Jones for the organization lead in home runs (21). Peterson also finished fourth in the organization with 75 runs batted in, and his .291 average was ninth-best amongst players.

20. Yohan Pino, RHP: Pino worked from both the bullpen, and the rotation in 2006, but either way he was phenomenal. The young righty finished the year with an amazing 14-2 record, and even picked up three saves along the way. In 94 innings, he struck out 99 batters, and walked only 20.

21. Trevor Plouffe, SS: Plouffe has another mediocre season in 2006, and some within the organization are beginning to question whether or not he is the shortstop of the future. I for one believe he has a very bright future, though I do believe a jump to Double-A in 2007 could be damaging to his development. The young SS batted only .245 for the Miracle in 2006.

22. Brian Duensing, SP: Duensing moved around quite a bit in 2006, working his way up to Double-A from Low-A Beloit. Though he finished the year with a 5-10 record, Duensing's 3.49 earned run average was the eighth-best mark in the organization, and he showed poise with every promotion he earned.

23. Danny Santiesteban, OF: Many scouts and fans jumped on the Santiesteban bandwagon last season, and the young five-tool outfielder did not disappoint in 2006. Though his average was below normal, Santiesteban showed that speed and extra-base hit ability that made him a top-20 prospect last season. Santiesteban batted .324 on the road for Elizabethton this past season, and stroked six home runs.

24. Jay Rainville, SP: The 2006 season was a lost cause for Rainville, but he is still considered one of the top starting pitching prospects in the Twins organization. He should be healthy and ready to go to start the 2007 season.

25. Danny Valencia, 3B/1B: The former University of Miami Hurricane had a tremendous first season in the Twins organization, raking his way to a spot on the Appalachian League All-Star Team. His .311 batting average was fifth-best in the organization, as he was really a force from the three spot in the Twins batting order.

26. Joe Benson, OF: Benson, like Parmelee, was a crown jewel in the Twins 2006 draft class, and like Parmelee, he also did not disappoint. The young slugger earned himself a promotion to full-season Beloit by showing tremendous pop in the Gulf Coast League. In 52 GCL games, Benson had 21 extra-base hits, and then went on to appear in eight games for the Snappers.

27. Douglas Deeds, OF: Deeds had another one of his solid season in 2006, as he continues to get overlooked by members of the Twins front office. This kid is a legitimate prospect, and should have success at the Triple-A level in 2007. He batted .282 in his second season with the Rock Cats, and is now playing in the prestigious Arizona Fall League.

28. Garrett Guzman, OF: Guzman is the feel good story of the season for the Minnesota Twins farm system, and will most likely win the organization's Comeback Player of the Year award. After driving in 51 runs in 65 games for the Miracle, Guzman was promoted to Double-A New Britain, where he once again showed great pop. He missed all of 2005 with a broken neck.

29. Eli Tintor, OF: Huge post-season home runs aside, Tintor had a great season for the Twins Low-A affiliate in 2006. In 116 games for the Snappers, Tintor batted at a nice .285 clip, and did not bat lower than .294 during the last three months of the season. He should be in Fort Myers to start the 2007 season.

30. Whitney Robbins, 3B/1B: After signing with the Twins in late June, Robbins went on an absolute tear for the Beloit Snappers, batting .778 through his first three professional games. Though he would not hit at that clip for the whole season, Robbins did bat .304 in his first year of professional baseball, and drove in 26 runs in only 32 games.

31. Zach Ward, SP: Ward had a sparkling 8-0 record when he came over to the Twins with Brandon Roberts for Kyle Lohse, but he did struggle once he put on the Snappers uniform. Ward went only 1-4 in his six starts for Beloit, posting a high earned run average of 5.93. Still, he is a great young pitching prospect, and should perform better next season.

32. Matt Tolbert, INF: Tolbert really put himself on the map this season, as he performed well at both the High-A and Double-A levels. Tolby batted .303 in 40 games for the Miracle, and then went on to bat .258 in 72 games for the Rock Cats. He showed a steady glove in the field, and is currently batting .339 through 14 Arizona Fall League games.

33. Andrew Thompson, INF: Like Paul Kelly, Thompson's season was also cut short due to injury, as he made his last appearance of the 2006 season on July 18. At the time, Thompson was coming off a June in which he batted at a .312 clip. He is right in their with the top middle infield prospects in the Twins organization.

34. Garrett Olson, 3B: Olson batted .313 for the Elizabethton Twins in his first season in professional baseball, and he really looked comfortable at the plate from day one. Batting in the middle of the E-Town Twins lineup, Olson was a main reason why the Twins went to the Appalachian League Finals. In August, Olson batted a ridiculous .352 in 24 games.

35. Brian Dinkelman, 2B: Dinkelman, like Olson, was another guy who the Twins drafted in the 2006 draft, and was another guy who performed above expectations in his first season with the organization. He batted .298 from his second base position in 2006, and he also batted .352 in the month of August. Dinkelman also showed some prowess at the top of the order, where he batted .324 as the team's leadoff hitter.

36. Errol Simonitsch, SP: Simonitsch had a roller coaster of a ride during the 2006 season, but he currently has the distinction of being on the Twins 40-man roster. Simonitsch lost 14 games for the New Britain Rock Cats this past season, though his 4.48 earned run average is not a terrible mark. He is going to need to bounce back in 2007, and I believe he will.

37. Alex Burnett, SP: Burnett had a solid season in the Appalachian League in 2006, finishing in the top-5 in the league in both strikeouts (71), and innings pitched (71.1). He was one of the main arms in the Elizabethton Twins rotation, and helped lead the team to the Apply League finals. In 13 starts, the young right posted a 4.04 earned run average.

38. Caleb Moore, C: This kid is the best catcher in the Twins organization, and with a little more seasoning, he could be backing up Joe Mauer by the 2009 season. He can hit to all fields, can hit for average, and he is a steady glove behind the plate. He is a player that will have many eyes looking at him in 2007.

39. Juan Portes, INF: The 2006 season was not what many expected from Portes, who was viewed at as one of the brightest position players during the 2005 season. He struggled with the stick, battled injuries, and really never got going all season long. He is going to have to have a strong showing in 2007 to move back up on the prospect radar.

40. Brian Kirwan, SP: Kirwan was sort of an ameba this past season, as you never knew what to expect every time he stepped on the rubber. Some games he would look amazing, like his six inning, one-hit performance against Burlington. Other games he would look terrible, like his three inning, seven run effort against Kingston. The Twins are hoping that the first Kirwan will step up in 2007.

41. Justin Jones, SP: Jones bounced around between High-A Fort Myers, and Double-A New Britain all season long, although most believe that he should have stayed put in Double-A to start the year. The young lefty has some nasty stuff, and it will be on full display for the New Britain faithful once again in 2007.

42. Garrett Jones, 1B/LF: Jones continues to hit his way into our top-50 prospect rankings, and if he could only hit better for average, he would be a Major League prospect. Once again, Jones led the Twins organization in home runs, smacking 21 longballs for the Rochester Red Wings. Jones also led the system in RBIs, driving in 92 of his Wings teammates.

43. Steven Singleton, INF: Singleton batted a nice .340 for the Elizabethton Twins in 2006, his first season of professional baseball. He showed the ability to hit both lefties (.344 BAA), and righties (.339 BAA), and he struck out only 19 times all season long. He could develop into a special player.

44. Ludovicus Van Mil, SP: The big guy had a decent season in his first year in the Twins organization, as the 7'1'' right-hander got used to professional baseball. In ten appearances, making eight starts, Van Mil posted a 3.30 earned run average, including a 2.66 mark as a starter.

45. Tyler Robertson, SP: Robertson was inserted into the Gulf Coast League Twins' rotation after being drafted this past June, and he pitched pretty well by most standards. The young lefty won four of his 11 starts, and he should be main pitcher on the Elizabethton Twins roster in 2007.

46. Jeffrey Christy, C: Christy could develop into a top catching prospect for the Twins, due to the lack of depth at that position in the Twins organization. He made three stop in 2006, starting with the Elizabethton Twins, and working his way up to Double-A. He will most likely begin the season with the High-A Miracle in 2007.

47. Gregory Yersich, C: Yersich is another in the short list of Twins' catching prospects, though he did not have a great season in 2006. He batted only .244 in 50 games, striking out 44 times.

48. Felix Molina, INF: Molina is a fan favorite in the Twins organization, and he had another solid season for the New Britain Rock Cats in 2006. Molina should be in the starting infield for the Rochester Red Wings next season, after batting a nice .270 for the Rock Cats in 2006.

49. Dan Leatherman, RP: Leatherman had a quick cup of tea with the Gulf Coast League Twins before being promoted to Low-A Beloit. For the Snappers, Leatherman was very consistent out of the bullpen, posting a 2.45 earned run average in 13 appearances.

50. Danny Hernandez, RP: Last, but not least, is Danny Hernandez of the Elizabethton Twins. Hernandez joined Valencia on the Appalachian League All-Star Team, and led the Twins organization with 18 saves in 2006.


Twin Cities Dugout Top Stories