A Minor Review of 2015: Minnesota Twins

Welcome to the annual series: ‘A Minor (League) Review of 2015.” This series is a great way to receive a quick recap of the ’15 minor league season for your favorite club(s), while also receiving a brief look toward the 2016 season and beyond. It can also be a handy feature for fantasy baseball players in keeper and Dynasty leagues.

A Minor Review of 2015: Twins

The Graduate: Miguel Sano, 3B/DH: Everyone knew Sano had power but the young slugger took the Majors by storm in 2015 and had teams pitching around him by the end of the year (He had 53 walks in 80 games). Just 22, he slugged 18 home runs in 279 at-bats, and is already a middle-of-the-order threat. The two biggest strikes against Sano are his lack of foot speed and his inability to competently play a defensive position (something that is more or less irrelevant in fantasy, although his dabbling at third base and the outfield helps his value). With Joe Mauer at first base and newly-acquired Byung-Ho Park earmarked for designated hitter, Sano should see time in left field.

The Riser: Jose Berrios, RHP: A former second round pick, Berrios always had solid potential but he had a nice breakout for the Twins in 2015, following up on a solid 2014. The 21-year-old right-hander reached Triple-A last year in just his fourth pro season — and despite moving slowly in his first two years. There are concerns over his durability because he’s not overly physical but he pitched more than 160 innings in ’15. He has the stuff (175 Ks and just 38 BBs) to be a No. 2 or 3 starter in the Majors.

The Tumbler: Alex Meyer, RHP: The polar opposite from Berrios, Meyer is an extremely physical pitcher who stands 6-9 and tips the scale at more than 225 pounds. The hard-thrower spent 2015 back in Triple-A for a second year and was shifted to a bullpen role. He struck out 100 batters in 92 innings but also walked 48 batters and allowed 101 hits. Meyer, 26, had his MLB debut but appeared in just two games (and walked three batters in 2.2 innings). Most tall pitchers take longer to develop (and iron out their delivery) so the Twins will be patient with him.

The ’15 Draft Pick: Tyler Jay, LHP: A hard-throwing lefty, Jay was selected sixth overall by the Twins in 2015. The former college hurler opened his pro career in High-A ball and pitched out of the bullpen. His permanent role is still up in the air as he has the arsenal required to start. With he lack of premium arms in the upper levels of the system, I’m willing to bet that Jay will be developed as a starter. He has the potential to be a No. 2 or 3 starter if he develops as hoped.

The Lottery Ticket: J.T. Chargois, RHP: To say Chargois has had injury problems would be an understatement. Selected in the second round of the 2012 draft, he pitched just 16 innings prior to the 2015 season. The right-hander pitched 48 games in ’15 — four times his career total — and struck out 53 batters in 48 innings. He walked 25 batters, which isn’t bad considering how much time he’s missed. Despite the lost development time, the Twins added Chargois to the 40-man roster after the season to protect him from the Rule 5 draft. With a fastball that can tickle triple digits, look for him to surface in the Majors in 2016 if he stays out of the infirmary.





Marc Hulet has been writing at FanGraphs since 2008. His work focuses on prospects and fantasy. Follow him on Twitter @marchulet.

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Jacque
Guest
Jacque

Berrios is putting up very impressive numbers. Has been young at every stop. Was given bump to 65 FV by Kiley yet everybody hedges their bet and says #3 starter. What gives?

Matt
Member
Matt

Declaring him a 1/2 starter is basically saying you consider him a top 30 or so pitcher in MLB right now. That would be quite aggressive for most prospects.

bartelsjason
Member
bartelsjason

I don’t like the term #1 or #2 starter because it sends the idea that most rotations have at least 1 or 2 solid elite guys, and that other teams don’t have more than 1 or 2. Would you rather have the Twins current #1 starter or the Mets #4, or some teams #3?

Cory Settoon
Member

Not to mention he would be behind potential 1/2 starters Urias, Giolito, Rodon, and Glasnow.