With the 2016 MLB draft under way the MiLB update looks back at the Minnesota Twins 2015 draft class.
This week marks the 2016 MLB draft. Already under way, the Minnesota Twins picked four high school position players and one college pitcher to start the draft.
Last year the Twins selected three college pitchers and two high school position players in the first five picks. The players selected were Tyler Jay, Kyle Cody (who didn’t sign with the Twins), Travis Blankenhorn, Trey Cabbage, and Alex Robinson.
Lets look at the top 2015 draft picks and how well they are playing.
The first-round selection for the Twins in 2015 was Tyler Jay, selected sixth overall from Illinois. A highly effective left-handed reliever in college, the Twins hope he can become a starter.
His last two college seasons, he posted a sub-2.00 ERA. His ERA this year is nearing that point.
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Last season, Jay was exclusively used out of the bullpen in Fort Myers. This year in Fort Myers, as mentioned, his first season is going according to plan.
His 2.18 ERA in 57 2/3 innings is better than some anticipated, mainly myself. Jay is the No. 3 prospect in the Twins organization, and for good reason. Expect him to see time with double-A Chattanooga this year.
Travis Blankenhorn, drafted in the third round, was the first high school infielder selected by the Twins.
Originally a shortstop, Blankenhorn’s quick hands and strong arm allow him to play third or even a corner outfield position. For now, however, he appears destined to play third.
He is currently on the Elizabethton Twins roster, which is where he ended the 2015 season.He played multiple positions for the Gulf Coast League Twins but only played third base for Elizabethton.
Overall, Blankenhorn’s first year of professional baseball was decent. However, he ended the year with 16 strikeouts in his final 48 at-bats.
He slashed .133/.188/.133 in that span. If he doesn’t adjust at the plate, his No. 18 Twins prospect rank could take a hit.
The fourth-round selection was Tennessee high school shortstop Trey Cabbage. One round after taking Blankenhorn, the Twins doubled up on high school infielders.
Cabbage moved to third base, where the Twins will primarily play him. He did play about a handful of games in the corner outfield spots, and three games at shortstop.
All-in-all Cabbage played 33 games for the GCL Twins.
Because the Twins drafted Cabbage and Blankenhorn in the same draft, both players will compete against each other for playing time at third base.
Cabbage’s prospect profile insists he could “continue to get some reps [in the outfield] and at first, especially if he and Blankenhorn are at the same level simultaneously.”
Currently, Cabbage will start 2016 with the GCL Twins.
Alex Robinson was the fifth-round pick by the Twins, a left-handed pitcher from the University of Maryland and pitched in 10 games for the Elizabethton Twins.
It didn’t go well for him as he allowed 13 runs (12 earned) in 12 innings of relief, walked 16 batters and struck out 15. Let’s not even bring up his ERA (9.00).
The one bright spot was his .238 opponent batting average. He’ll begin 2016 with Elizabethton along with Blankenhorn.
It’s worth watching how his 2016 season fairs. Currently ranked No. 26 among Twins prospects, Robinson still has potential as an effective left-handed reliever late in ball games. But as one can see by the numbers, his control is a major issue.