Minnesota Twins: Top Pick Royce Lewis signs with Twins
Thad Levine, Derek Falvey and the Twins scouting department finished up the 2017 MLB draft with 41 selections.
The Minnesota Twins had one of the best drafts this year; and according to Jim Callis they have the top draft class. Callis mentions how this class is much different than in 2001 when the Twins basically only got Joe Mauer. Furthermore, they should expect production from most of their top ten picks.
The top pick this year was Royce Lewis, a SS/OF from JSerra Catholic High School in Southern California. He has plus speed and the chance to be a five-tool player for the Twins in the upcoming years. Royce signed with the Twins on Saturday in between their doubleheader. He will be assigned to the GCL Twins and will begin play in the Rookie League.
Lewis’ slot value in the draft was $7,770,700 and the Minnesota Twins have signed him for a rumored $6,725,000. Consequently this leaves the Twins with $7,431,800 left in their bonus pool. There was thought that Royce could be hard to sign based on his agent being Scott Boras but that was not the case.
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Lewis will look to have the same success that Alex Kirilloff had last year.
Last year the Twins first round pick, Alex Kirilloff got off to an outstanding start. In 55 games for the Elizabethton Twins Alex hit .306/.341/.454 while leading the team in runs scored and was second in RBIs. He also hit seven home runs which was fourth on the team.
If Royce Lewis can get off to a hot start like that he could be well on his way to moving through the minor leagues. He has gained comparisons to Derek Jeter and Justin Upton (drafted as a shortstop). Lewis has been compared to Jeter for his makeup and having all five tools; he could also follow in Upton’s footsteps making his debut in two years and making an all-star team in four.
Being compared to Derek Jeter can put a lot of pressure on a young player, yet Royce doesn’t seem to mind. Lewis has produced no matter the level of competition and the Twins will hope to see that as he progresses through the minors.
Minnesota Twins Draft Signings:
The Twins have reportedly signed Brent Rooker (Competitive Balance A) to his slot value which is $1,935,300. He will start in Elizabethton for a short spurt before heading to Cedar Rapids. The Twins have agreed to terms with 19 of their 41 picks. They include Charlie Barnes (4th Round), Andrew Bechtold (5th Round), and Ricardo De La Torre (6th Round). Official signing bonuses have yet to be released for these players.
They have agreed to terms with eight pitchers (2 left-handed), two catchers, one second baseman, one third baseman, three shortstops, and four outfielders. The big names remaining to sign are RHP Landon Leach (2nd Round), RHP Blayne Enlow (3rd Round), and LHP Ryley Widell (7th Round). Enlow has arguably the best breaking ball in the draft and will require a significant bonus.
Next: Twins: 2017 MLB Draft Recap, First 10 Rounds
Fans and Twins personnel both hope to see success from these draft picks as they begin their minor league careers. There are a number of fans who don’t understand the Twins strategy not taking Hunter Greene over Royce Lewis. However, based on the money they saved signing Lewis they have been able to draft more talent in the later rounds to increase the depth of this draft class and prove the front office made the right decision.