The Minnesota Twins Minor League system has produced more Major League players than most through the years. From Joe Mauer to Brian Dozier to Byron Buxton, the system keeps chugging along.
The Minnesota Twins have a Top-15 ranked Minor League system in Major League baseball. Puckett’s pond is here to break down the MLB.com top-30. Last week we covered the top-5, today we will take a look at numbers 6-10.
With the success that the Twins are producing Major League talent, the future is extremely bright. Every season Minnesota seems to graduate an impact player to the Majors who ends up playing a big role on the team. Before we jump into this list, let’s take a look at a player currently making waves in the big leagues.
Jose Berrios was drafted in the first round of the 2012 MLB draft and quickly proved to be worth it. He surrendered only four earned runs over his first 30 2/3 innings pitched in the system. Berrios also showed his ability to throw strikes, walking only four batters while striking out 49 in Rookie ball.
Berrios followed that up with a 3.99 ERA in 103 2/3 innings the next season playing in Single-A Cedar Rapids. Although the ERA was high in 2013, he did strike out 100 batters while only walking 40 and looked like a future star.
There was little doubt that Berrios was going to be a big piece in the Minnesota Twins rotation in the future. In 2014 and 2015, Berrios only proved more that he was destined for the Major Leagues. During the 2016 season, he pitched well enough to finally earn his first call-up to Majors Leagues.
However, when he received his opportunity in The Show during the ’16 season, it was uninspiring. That season went about as poorly as any season can go for a pitcher. He started 14 games that season and had an 8.02 ERA while pitching 58 1/3 innings for the Twins. He had a mind-blowing 35 walks with only 48 strikeouts during his debut season and looked nothing like the pitcher he was in the Minors.
However, luckily for Minnesota that was just a minor blip on the radar. Last season, Berrios bounced back and proved he belonged in the Major Leagues. He had 3.89 ERA while making 25 starts while striking out 139 batters with only 48 walks across 145 2/3 innings pitched.
The Minnesota Twins will need Berrios to continue to improve if they are going to be serious contenders in the American League. Another player to keep an eye on is the Twins number six ranked prospect Alex Kirilloff.