Minnesota Twins: Kennys Vargas Providing Additional Power
The refined Kennys Vargas looks to continue his contributions as designated hitter and prove his worth to the Minnesota Twins.
It’s been a roller coaster ride for Minnesota Twins slugger Kennys Vargas. Terry Ryan never fully committed to the idea that Vargas could last at the MLB level playing first base or even designated.
He’s always been an enigma still up until this point. But, on the April 24, Vargas got his first call-up with the new guard and he’s been everything Twins fans have hoped for, a power presence behind Miguel Sano in the lineup. Like many others, it’s been a small sample size but an effective one as well.
Maybe you remember the giant shadow cast behind the batters box in the Future’s Game at Target Field a handful of years ago. Vargas stood up there confidently with his colossal open stance ready for the pitch.
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I remember watching that game and thinking to myself how long it’s been since a true power hitter has been in play for the Twins. Flash forward to 2017 and he’s still being yo-yoed back and forth but hopefully Falvey and Levine finally see something in him that Terry Ryan failed to.
Being able to effectively evaluate talent and develop through one’s own farm system is a staple for success in today’s era. Kennys Vargas was never that can’t miss prospect or one who got scouts riveting about his pro potential.
He’s exactly the type of player that this organization needs to find a place for or he’ll ascend elsewhere like so many former Twins have recently. Finding value in mid-tier prospects to contribute is essential.
Finding help behind Miguel Sano’s spot in the lineup is crucial for both himself at the plate and those following.
The number one priority for the Twins should be finding adequate lineups to accommodate their best hitter, Miguel Sano. Joe Mauer provides zero threat hitting behind Miguel and so does Robbie Grossman.
A big reason for all of Sano’s walks has been pitchers throwing away from him and being comfortable giving out walks since Mauer no longer has that extra base pop to make teams pay for walking guys ahead of him.
With Kennys Vargas, it’s less likely pitchers will continue that trend since one swing of the bat can change a game with Vargas; especially with men already aboard. This automatically makes Sano’s job easier because pitchers have to attack him rather than pitch away from him.
Another trend I’ve noticed with Double A and Triple A is it’s more difficult to get called up under the new regime. Just ask Jose Berrios. They’re extremely patient with prospects, not trying to hurry them or give them call-ups before they’re major league ready.
Vargas had to prove why he deserved a call-up. He’s taken enough walks and has become a more complete hitter throughout this minor league season. So far with the Twins, it’s been the same way. His three home runs have been encouraging, but his approach looks so much more relaxed.
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The time is now to capitalize on the opportunity to get at-bats at designated hitter and first base. Byung Ho Park has yet to make a threat in management’s eyes, so it’s Vargas’ time to shine and add a spark in the inconsistent Twins lineup. Maybe that once towering prospect at the 2014 Future’s Game can start knocking balls out of Target Field like many believed he once could.