2007 Beloit Snappers Preview and Roster

The Beloit Snappers, the Minnesota Twins Midwest League affiliate, will open up their 2007 season on Thursday, when they welcome the Cedar Rapids Kernels to Pohlman Field. The roster is stock piled with great prospects, including 2006 first round draft selection Chris Parmelee. Here is a look at the 2007 Snappers.

The 2007 Beloit Snappers roster features some big name prospects within the Twins organization, and should challenge for the 2007 Midwest League championship. While some of these players will likely garner some promotions early in the year, the Opening Day roster is loaded with some big bats, highlighted by 2006 first round draft selection Chris Parmelee. The Snappers rotation will need to eat innings, but they may also have the best closer in the MWL.

The starting rotation will likely consist of Alex Burnett, Adam Hawes, Jose Lugo, Sean Land, and Jeffrey Manship, though Adam Revelette could also get some starts. Burnett was an innings eater for the Elizabethton Twins in 2006, and should be the staff ace. Manship is a guy who could also be a dominant starter, and is a pitcher who the Twins love his makeup. Hawes was one of the better pitchers in the Appalachian League in 2005, and will be counted upon heavily in 2007.

Danny Hernandez was the closer for the Elizabethton Twins in 2006, and will likely assume that role for the Snappers in 2007. He led the organization in saves in 2006, and has electric stuff to go along with a good mental makeup. Dan Leatherman is another guy who will be relied upon in 2007, and he is joined in the bullpen by Danny Vais, Armando Gabino, Robert Delaney, and Cole DeVries.

Vais posted a solid 2.12 earned run average in 47 MWL appearances in 2006, and Leatherman was solid in his three stops last season. Delaney is new to the MWL, but he got some solid work in at High-A Fort Myers in 2006. Hernandez saved 18 games for Elizabethton in 2006, and was an Appalachian League All-Star.

Behind the plate is a trio of guys who know how to call a game. Allan de San Miguel is only 19-years old, and appeared in 71 games for the Snappers in 2006. Gregory Yersich is a fine young back stop, who drove in 21 games for Elizabethton last year. Jose Leger made it all the way to Double-A in 2006, though he batted only .241 overall.

The infield should be solid up the middle, especially once Paul Kelly gets back from an injury. The young shortstop is one of the better middle infield prospects in the Twins organization, though Yancarlos Ortiz should hold down the shortstop reigns until his return. Garrett Olson and Brian Dinkelman both had great offensive seasons for Elizabethton in 2006, and third baseman Danny Valencia was an Appalachian League All-Star.

Johnny Woodard should be the team's first baseman, and the Twins are hoping he begins to live up to his potential. He is a big kid with great power, but needs to work on his skills at the plate. Andrew Thompson and Daniel Berg round out the infield, and Thompson is about as slick a fielder as they come. Berg is a converted catcher, who has a tremendous arm.

The outfield should be one of the best in the Midwest League, and consists of at least three guys who should receive promotions during the 2007 season. Parmelee is by far the best prospect of the bunch, and will display great power from his right field position. Joe Benson is another top outfield prospect who is a five-tool player, and he will be the team's right fielder. Centerfield should belong to Danny Santiesteban, who has the kind of speed and power than most scouts dream about. Mark Robinson will be the team's fourth outfielder, and he has the ability to play all three outfield positions.

The Snappers open up their 2007 season on Thursday, when they welcome the Cedar Rapids Kernels to Pohlman Field.

2007 Beloit Snappers Opening Day Roster:

Starting Pitchers: Alex Burnett, Adam Hawes, Sean Land, Jeffrey Manship, Jose Lugo, Adam Revelette

Relief Pitchers: Danny Vais, Armando Gabino, Dan Leatherman, Robert Delaney, Cole DeVries, Danny Hernandez (Closer)

Catchers: Gregory Yersich, Allan de San Miguel, Jose Leger

Infielders: Paul Kelly, Yancarlos Ortiz, Andrew Thompson, Daniel Berg, William Luque, Johnny Woodard, Brian Dinkelman, Garrett Olson, Danny Valencia

Outfielders: Chris Parmelee, Joe Benson, Danny Santiesteban, Mark Robinson

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