Puckett’s Pond Minnesota Twins 2018 Top-40 Prospects: #6-10
By Nate Palmer
No. 7 Brent Rooker, 1B/DH/LF, Chattanooga Lookouts
Nate’s Rank: 5, Greg’s Rank: 9
As you can likely see by my personal ranking of Brent Rooker, he is one of the Twins prospects I am most excited to see. Rooker only recently came to the Twins as he was drafted 35th overall by the Twins in the 2017 Draft out of Mississippi State University. Now in his first full season of professional baseball, Rooker is close to knocking on the major league door after his 2018 spent at Double-A Chattanooga.
After hitting .281/.364/.566 with a .930 OPS in 2017 between Elizabethton and then making the jump to Fort Myers, the Twins were confident in Rooker’s ability to make another move up a level. The Twins minor league hitter of the year for 2017 got off to a slow start in 2018 but had rebounded well until experiencing a rough August.
June and July were very good months for Rooker as he slashed .314/.400/.623 with a 1.023 OPS along with 13 home runs, 18 doubles, and 40 RBIs. While the struggle on either side of those months can’t be ignored, it is clear that Rooker is only likely a step or two away from receiving a call-up to the major leagues. Before a down August, he may have even been in line for consideration for when rosters expand at the start of September in just a few days.
Rooker will likely always be a bat first player as he continues his journey to the major leagues. What is still to be seen is where Rooker will land defensively. He has still received plenty of time as a left fielder but if his defense will remain good enough to provide value as a major leaguer is yet to be seen. The future of players like Tyler Austin and Joe Mauer will also have an impact on Rooker’s timeline for arrival in the major leagues.