Minnesota Twins Opening Day roster projection after Justin Topa injury

How will things look after the Twins lose yet another pitcher ahead of Opening Day?

2024 Minnesota Twins Spring Training
2024 Minnesota Twins Spring Training / Brace Hemmelgarn/GettyImages
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Projected Minnesota Twins Opening Day Infield

Things are a little more calm — and predictable — outside of the pitching situation.

Minnesota’s infield seems to have been locked in for almost the entire duration of Spring Training. Baring an injury things were pretty much set across the board, although first base remains a bit of a question mark.

The Twins signed Carlos Santana to add some power, but also to platoon with Alex Kirilloff much in the same way Donovan Solano split time with him there last season. Kirilloff is once again coming off surgery and it’s unclear when he’ll be healthy enough to take over everyday duties.

Until then, the Twins will likely cycle through a rotation that also includes Edouard Julien and Kyle Farmer at first. We saw Julien soft launched at first base late last season, but it would give the team another way to keep his bat in the lineup.

That will be key for when Brooks Lee gets called up, as the expectation is that he can play second base and provide a better defensive option while Julien either plaeyrs first or gets into the lineup as the DH.

Lee isn’t in the picture for Opeing Day, but the lineup is still pretty fantastic even without him. An infield of Santana/Kirilloff at first, Julien at second, with Carlos Correa and Royce Lewis on the left side is about as great as we’ve seen the Twins be in recent years.

Player

Position

Carlos Santana

1B/DH

Alex Kirilloff

1B/DH

Edouard Julien

2B/DH

Carlos Correa

SS

Royce Lewis

3B

Ryan Jeffers

C

Christian Vazquez

C

Kyle Farmer

INF

Farmer came back on a $6 million deal, which effectively acted as a free agent signing even though it was an arbitration deal. He’ll be the utility glue in the infield, especially after the team traded Nick Gordon to the Marlins to add what turned out to be much-needed bullpen depth.

Projected Minnesota Twins Opening Day Outfield

So much hinges on the health of Byron Buxton this season, not just the outfield situation.

Last year he didn’t play a single inning in the field, and already we’ve dealt with an injury scare before the season has even started. Buxton says he’s back, but whether or not his body holds up is the seven-figure question.

His inability ot stay consistently healthy is why the Twins traded for Manuel Margot and have Austin Martin ready to get called up from St. Paul. Ideally Buxton plays more games in center than we’ve seen him play the last two seasons, but we all know how much easier said than done that is.

Max Kepler never ended up getting traded, despite rampant rumors all winter, which has turned out to be a blessing. Minnesota has its corner outfield situation pretty much set between Kepler and Matt Wallner, with Willi Castro projected to provide some depth behind them.

Player

Position

Byron Buxton

CF

Matt Wallner

LF

Max Kepler

RF

Manuel Margot

OF

Willi Castro

INF/OF

It would have been nice to see the Twins add another corner outfielder in free agency, but the market was pretty thin. There’s also the frugalness of the franchise to deal with, which would suggest any assistance that comes to the outfield group will come from within, whether it be Martin or someone like Trevor Larnach.

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