Taylor's Twins Talk

Focusing on the Twins, with a few ramblings on other things that catch my attention

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Ft. Myers Miracle Roster

I would have preferred to wait until the Miracle website posted a roster, but they're a bit behind the curve. Instead, I'm going with the roster that can be found at minorleaguebaseball.com, which looks pretty accurate to me. Without further ado, then, here's the opening day Miracle roster:

Name / Position / Age / Organization Rank

Starting Pitchers

1.) Kyle Aselton - LHP - 24 - #16 SP
2.) Kyle Waldrop - RHP - 21 - #17 SP
3.) Eduardo Morlan - RHP - 21 - #11 SP
4.) Oswaldo Sosa - RHP - 21 - #12 SP
5.) Zach Ward - RHP - 23 - #25 SP

The Miracle actually have about 8 guys who could be called upon to start, but these are the five who I think are most likely to get the majority of the starts for the team. Sosa was originally optioned to New Britain, but a numbers crunch has pushed him back to Ft. Myers, where he probably belongs -- he has just 6 starts at the High A level. Eduardo Morlan was fantastic last season with Beloit, and it will be interesting to watch him continue to develop. Waldrop and Aselton were both drafted in the 2004 draft, and will continue to develop together. Aselton had a good enough season last year converting to a starter that I thought he'd get promoted to New Britain this season, but instead he's making a return trip to Ft. Myers. Ward, meanwhile, was acquired last season in the trade that sent Kyle Lohse to Cincinnati. He was phenomenal for the Reds A-ball Dayton affiliate before the trade, but struggled once going to Beloit. His inclusion on the Ft. Myers roster is a bit of a surprise because of his struggles with Beloit to end the season. Obviously, the Twins feel that was a fluke, and gave him the promotion on the strength of what he showed in Dayton.

Relief Pitchers
1.) Jay Rainville - RHP - 21 - #24 SP
2.) Ryan Mullins - LHP - 23 - #20 SP
3.) Josh Hill - RHP - 24 - #31 RP
4.) Angel Garcia - RHP - 23 - #28 RP
5.) Alexander Smit - LHP - 21 - #13 RP
6.) Frank Mata - RHP - 23 - #34 RP
7.) Yohan Pino - RHP - 23 - #9 RP
8.) David Shinskie - RHP - 22 - #36 RP

Jay Rainville, Ryan Mullins, and Alexander Smit could all find themselves getting starts this season, but for now I'm putting them in the bullpen. Smit is on the 40-man roster, so the Twins obviously feel he has a bright future ahead of him. Yohan Pino is the most interesting name on the least -- he's an outstanding prospect, and if he starts off strong he could find himself in New Britain by the end of the year. He could also become a starter this season, but again finding places for him to start would be difficult, and he's been so good out of the bullpen that there seems to be little reason to mess with success.

1.) Caleb Moore - C - 23 - #4 C
2.) Javier Sanchez - C - 25 - NR
3.) Jeff Christy - C - 22 - #5 C

I thought that Christy would be starting off down in Beloit, because he was just drafted last season and spent most of 2006 in Elizabethton. The fact that the Twins are skipping a level indicates that he's already impressed the talent evaluators. Moore, meanwhile, is one of the few prospects the Twins have behind the plate who has done well at the plate, hitting .309 in 2005 with the E-Twins and .286 last season with Beloit. Javi Sanchez adds an interesting mix to the team, as he missed all of last season due to injury. How the Miracle find playing time for three catchers will be one of the interesting things to watch with this team.

1.) Erik Lis - 1B - 23 - #2 1B
2.) Steven Tolleson - 2B - 23 - #7 2B
3.) Juan Portes - IF - 21 - #8 2B
4.) Toby Gardenhire - SS - 24 - #9 2B
5.) Whitney Robbins - 3B - 22 - #5 3B
6.) Matthew Betsill - 3B - 22 - #10 3B

Alright, I confess -- Erik Lis is quite possibly my favorite Twins minor leaguer. He put up a very solid 2005 season with Elizabethton (.315/933), and then proceeded to do even better last year in Beloit (.326/949). He should continue to put up great numbers, and a mid-season promotion to New Britain isn't out of the question. Whitney Robbins is the other guy to focus on this season, as along with Matt Moses and David Winfree he's one of the top third basemen in the system. The really interesting name on this list is Toby Gardenhire, who hit just .198 in Beloit last season. This is probably a make-it or break-it season for Gardenhire, who to this point has not demonstrated that he can hit well enough to retain a spot on the roster for long.

1.) Edward Ovalle - OF - 21 - #16 OF
2.) Eli Tintor - OF - 22 - #11 OF
3.) Dwayne White - OF - 23 - #19 OF

With so few outfielders on the roster, it seems likely that guys like Erik Lis and Whit Robbins could get a little time in the outfield this season for the Miracle. Of the actual outfielders on the Miracle roster, Eli Tintor of Hibbing, MN is the most interesting -- he hit .285 for Beloit last season in his first year of full-season ball. Ovalle, meanwhile, had a little bit of a down year offensively last season for Beloit, hitting just .261. With Chris Parmelee and Joe Benson needing roster spots with Beloit, however, that was more than adequate to earn Ovalle a promotion to Ft. Myers. Dwayne White, meanwhile, finally gets a promotion out of Beloit (for the same reasons as Ovalle) after two seasons when he posted .261 and .258 batting averages.

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