Can Miguel Sano play in the outfield, or, if not, can his bat make up the difference for poor defense?
With Byung-ho Park moving into the DH slot, the Twins have begun a training program designed to slim Miguel Sano down and turn him into a big league right fielder. There are going to be growing pains, even assuming that Sano has the skills to make that leap (see the late-season woes of Chicago’s Kyle Schwarber).
The Twins obviously believe that keeping Sano’s bat in the lineup is crucial, and that makes the decision to move him into the field also crucial. There have been times when a less than stellar defensive fielder has been able to more than compensate with killer offense, but there are just as many horribly failed attempts to force a slugger into a position where he is not a good fit. The question for the 2016 Twins is, can Sano shape up and learn the new position, while continuing to pound the ball and drive in runs. If not, what is the backup plan to keep him active?