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Minnesota Twins shortstop Jorge Polanco is yet another young player who enjoyed a breakout performance during the 2017 season. In his first full season in MLB, Polanco showed that he belongs at this level.
However, Polanco is little more than a placeholder for the Minnesota Twins at this point. The Minor League system has three highly touted players rising through the ranks and Polanco will be the odd man out when they’re ready for The Show.
Only 24-years-old, Polanco has a bright future in Major League Baseball and last season we saw a glimpse of his potential. He hit .256 with 46 extra base hits and only 78 strikeouts in 544 plate appearances.
Power is not Polanco’s game but he did manage to hit a solid 13 home runs for the Twins in ’17. He also showed an ability to drive in runs, collecting 78 runs batted in and hitting .288 with runners in scoring position.
However, Polanco is a liability defensively at shortstop for Minnesota. He committed 18 errors in 507 chances giving him a .964 fielding percentage. The Twins will need to shore up the middle of the infield defensively if they want to contend this season.
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What to expect from Polanco in 2018
Polanco is off to a terrible start this Spring for the Minnesota Twins. Through his first 11 at-bats he has collected only one hit while striking out three times. However, Polanco should improve upon his numbers from a season ago.
He doesn’t turn 25 until July, and entering his second full season, he should improve. Polanco showed great abilities at the plate and Minnesota will need more of the same this season. His low strikeout percentage make him a valuable asset to any lineup. However, if his defense doesn’t improve he won’t be long for the position in Minnesota.
His future with the Twins is murky because of the talent on its way from the Minors. However, his future in the Major Leagues is bright. Polanco is still young, and provides enough value offensively that he could be a valuable trade asset for Minnesota moving forward.
Minnesota has high hopes for a playoff run this season and Polanco will play a vital role in that happening. If he shores up his defense, the Twins will be one of the best teams in the American League. If he doesn’t improve in the field, he may not make it through the season starting at shortstop.
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