On the hitting side of things, the Minnesota Twins had quite a few major leaguers playing in various winter leagues and only two of their top hitting prospects got any WL time at all.
Making his major league debut with a solid season for the Twins in 2013 was outfielder Oswaldo Arcia who amassed a 102 OPS+ in 378 major league plate appearances that included 33 extra-base hits. Arcia, a 22-year-old Venezuelan, obviously felt that over 500 plate appearances combined between the majors and Triple-A Rochester weren’t enough and he headed home to play some winter ball, hitting .262/.386/.496 with nine doubles and eight home runs in 141 at bats.
30-year-old infielder Brad Boyer, who had been playing in independent leagues since 2011, signed on with the Twins and got into 11 games with their Double-A affiliate in New Britain last year. He went down to Mexico to play 13 games in the Mexican winter league, hitting .281/.317/.386 with two walks and 14 strikeouts in 57 at bats.
Chris Colabello, 29, who played in 55 games for the Twins in his first major league season after pummeling Triple-A competition, didn’t fare as well in 17 Dominican league games this winter, hitting .190/.254/.190 with four walks and 18 strikeouts in 58 at bats.
Eduardo Escobar, a 25-year-old infielder who came to the Twins from the Chicago White Sox in the trade for Francisco Liriano in 2012, went home to Venezuela to play a great deal with Caribes de Anzoategui, hitting .254/.315/.415 with 11 doubles, four triples and four home runs in 193 at bats.
Pedro Florimon, the Twins’ regular shortstop in 2013, played in seven games in his native Dominican Republic, hitting just .154/.214/.192. The 27 year old didn’t have a great season in the majors, hitting just .221/.281/.330 in 134 major league games.
Backup catcher Chris Herrmann, 26, also played in the Dominican league this season, hitting .200/.324/.267 in 30 at bats. He split his time in 2013 between the Twins and the Rochester Red Wings serving as a light-hitting backstop.
29-year-old outfielder Jermaine Mitchell played 12 games in Venezuela this offseason, hitting .178/.275/.200 in 45 at bats. He split 2013 between Triple-A affiliates of the Phillies and the Twins, putting up a solid .268/.341/.418 line in 383 plate appearances.
Puerto Rican outfielder Daniel Ortiz played in 38 games at home, hitting .229/.261/.282 with just four doubles and one home run in 131 at bats. The 23 year old played for Double-A New Britain this season and had a much better season, hitting .258/.301/.405 with 27 doubles, four triples and 12 home runs.
Catcher Josmil Pinto, who made a big impression in his first exposure major league baseball in 2013, had a handful of at bats in his native Venezuela. The 24-year-old hit .179/.179/.179 in 28 Venezuelan at bats but hit .342/.398/.566 in his first 76 major league at bats with four home runs.
20-year-old Dominican Jorge Polanco got into plenty of action with Leones del Escogido in the Dominican winter league, hitting .294/.361/.383 with nine doubles, a triple and a home run in 180 at bats. He was coming off a very strong season with Class-A Cedar Rapids in the Midwest League, hitting .308/.362/.452 with 47 extra-base hits.
Dan Rohlfing, 24, spent 2013 in Triple-A Rochester and Double-A New Britain, doing much better with the bat at the higher level. He played in 10 games in the Dominican, hitting .238/.360/.286 in 21 at bats.
Deibinson Romero, a 27-year-old third baseman hit only .132/.227/.316 in 38 at bats in the Dominican league after a very solid 2013 campaign split between New Britain and Rochester, hitting .275/.374/.448 with 13 home runs.
22-year-old second baseman Eddie Rosario made headlines this winter after failing a second drug test and earning a 50-game suspension for 2014. He had a very good season in 2013, playing in High-A Fort Myers and Double-A New Britain and hitting for a combined .302/.350/.460 slash line. He played in the Arizona Fall League and then in the Puerto Rican winter league and didn’t play well although he was injured. Reports are that he tested positive for a drug that he was taking as a treatment for his injury.
The team’s #2 prospect, Miguel Sano, played a grand total of two games in the Dominican Winter League, going one for five with four walks and two strikeouts. Sano, a 20-year-old third baseman, hit .280/.382/.610 with 70 extra-base hits (including 35 home runs) in Fort Myers and New Britain.
A 23-year-old Dominican shortstop, Danny Santana had a very good year for New Britain, hitting almost .300 with 30 stolen bases but without much power. Playing every day with Aguilas Cibaenas in the Dominican league, he hit .311/.339/.451 with seven doubles, two triples, two home runs and eight stolen bases in 122 at bats.
Kennys Vargas, 23, bashed six doubles and five home runs among his 36 hits in 138 at bats (.261 average) in the Puerto Rican league this winter. The first baseman followed up his .267/.344/.468 season with 53 extra-base hits in the Florida State League with a strong one at home in PR.
22-year-old Aussie Logan Wade has spent two seasons playing mostly on the infield in the low minors with the Twins, putting up some very solid numbers. He’s playing at home in the Australian Baseball League this winter and hit .244/.309/.311 for the last place Brisbane Bandits.
Topics: Minnesota Twins