Minnesota Twins Top 20 Prospects: #5 Jorge Polanco
Jorge Polanco’s future with the Minnesota Twins is still in limbo despite top five ranking.
Honorable Mentions #20: Travis Blankenhorn
#19: Wander Javier #18: Stuart Turner #17: Jermaine Palacios
#16: Mason Melotakis #15: Jake Reed #14: Taylor Rogers
#13: Lewis Thorpe #12: J.T. Chargois #11: Adam Brett Walker
#10: Alex Meyer #9: Nick Burdi #8: Kohl Stewart
#7: Stephen Gonsalves #6: Nick Gordon
Jorge Polanco made two short appearances with the Minnesota Twins. He played five games in 2014 and four games last season. Both were productive but not long enough to make a proper impression.
Name: Jorge Polanco
Position: SS Age: 22
Height: 5’11” Age: 200 lbs.
Throws: Right Bats: Switch
Acquired: Signed as amateur free agent in 2009
Throughout his minor league career, Polanco has had no problem hitting. When it comes to his defensive abilities, the struggles are abundant. He commits way too many errors to maintain a starting role at the major league level. In six minor league seasons, he committed 99 errors at shortstop, which translates into a .932 fielding percentage.
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Last season Alcides Escobar won a Gold Glove award at shortstop with a .980 fielding percentage. If Polanco could field at Escobar’s level, he would no doubt be the starting shortstop for the Twins. League average fielding percentage was .972 last season. Even if Polanco could field at league average, he would still start without a doubt.
Some observers have said Polanco should transition to second base. He still is an inferior fielder at the position. Moving to second might make it easier for him to succeed but Brian Dozier already has a lock at second base. It would not be plausible for Polanco to take Dozier’s spot. If he can’t field a ball at short while blocked by Dozier at second, his options are minimal at best.
Polanco can’t field but he can hit. In his six minor league seasons he slashed .288/.348/.404 and has proven every step of the way that he is plenty capable at the plate.
At this point, with Polanco seemingly major league ready, many see him as trade chip for the Twins. He could be dealt for bullpen help or he could wind up sticking around a little longer. Either way he will need to patch up the glove in order to have long-lasting value.