Minnesota Twins Top 20 Prospects

Credit: MiLB.com

Credit: MiLB.com

20. Stuart Turner– Catcher

Date of Birth: December 27, 1991
Height/Weight: 6’2/ 230
Bats/Throws: Right/Right
Acquired: Drafted in the 3rd round (78th overall) of the 2013 draft

Turner is a defensive-minded catcher, but many scouts do see the bat coming along later in his career. He’s moved quickly up the minor league ladder since being drafted and his fielding and presence behind the plate gets some good reviews, but his bat has lagged behind as his best season resulted in only a .698 OPS. Turner, at worst, figures to be a backup catcher that will stick around the league for a while (look at the career Jeff Mathis has carved out). If the bat improves he could see himself getting more of a chance at a starting role. He has another year or two before he has to prove anything at the major league level, so a breakout is entirely possible. For now, he’s a C-range prospect with an ETA of somewhere in 2018. The most important thing about Turner and his value is that he can always be helpful in a way to the Twins because of his position and defense.

19. Engelb Vielma– Shortstop

Date of Birth: June 22, 1994
Height/Weight: 5’11/150
Bats/Throws: Switch/Right
Acquired: Signed as an amateur free agent, 9/8/2011

Vielma will never be known for his bat, but he is developing at a very good rate, as he hit High-A ball as a 21-year-old and held his own in a league that favors pitching. He’s fast and is a good defender up the middle too. If his bat continues to develop at a linear pace, he could be a decent fifth infielder, or possibly a fringe starter for most teams. He’s still a few years way, as his ETA sits around 2019 and he is also a C-grade prospect in my book. He should continue to grow and could possibly fill out a little more, which could create some pop in his bat and help him climb up the rankings a little bit.

18. Daniel Palka– First Base

Date of Birth: October 28, 1991
Height/Weight: 6’2/220
Bats/Throws: Left/Left
Acquired: Trade with ARZ, 11/10/2015

Palka is a power hitting, prototypical first baseman if there ever was one. His biggest downfall is that he whiffs a lot, but he also takes in the Adam Dunn or Jack Cust approach to hitting, which means most times that Palka steps up to the plate, he’s either going deep, walking, or striking out. He’s an average fielder, and he obviously isn’t going to steal any bases or gain you many runs of the base paths, but if he keeps hitting homers and holding a good average at every level, he could be a useful piece come around 2018. He’s a high-C prospect in my book and could even be used as trade bait as Minnesota is stacked with 1B/DH types (Mauer, Vargas, Park).

17. Yorman Landa– Picther

Date of Birth: June 11, 1994
Height/Weight: 6’0/175
Bats/Throws: Right/Right
Acquired: Signed as an amateur free agent, 9/3/2010

I got to see Landa pitch in the 2015 Midwest League playoffs, when his Cedar Rapids team played the West Michigan Whitecaps. As a Tiger fan, Landa scares me because I know my favorite hitters will have to face his electric fastball in a few years. He has a nice changeup to keep hitters honest, and he could be a pretty dominant one-inning reliever in a few years. He could also probably skip a level to get to the majors soon. I value him as a higher C prospect too though, because he will still need to prove himself at the upper levels of the minors. Very intriguing arm though.

16. Trey Cabbage– Third Base

Date of Birth: May 3, 1997
Height/Weight: 6’3/204
Bats/Throws: Left/Right
Acquired: Drafted in the 4th round (110th overall) of the 2015 draft

Cabbage was one of the top high school hitting prospects in the most recent draft, and for good reason. He has a very pretty swing that gets the bat through the zone quickly and for a good length of time. His power could develop as he gets older, but he only had two extra-base hits in his short rookie-ball season of 119 at-bats. Cabbage is more a high risk/reward prospect at this point. I can’t see him reaching the majors before 2019, and he’s also a higher C grade prospect.

One Response

  1. TwinSelfie

    Paulka had 24 stolen bases last year and says he kept same ratio in AZFL, while playing all the games in OF, why would he be a base clogger?


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