Top Baseball Prospects for 2015 and Beyond
Now updated for 2016's Top Prospects
Scouting Book's Top Prospects list is a Combined List, a calculated summary of the overall valuations of the entire prospect universe.
Remember: this page is the result of an automatic process that re-sorts and re-ranks players often.
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Top Twins Prospects for 2015
Current Overall SB ranking shown in grid below.
Georgia's Byron Buxton, the second overall pick of the 2012 Draft, is a speedy outfielder who might be the best overall offensive prospect in baseball today. With a natural base-stealing ability and plus speed in the outfield, he's a future star no matter how you slice it, and he's a decent bet to make a Mike Trout-sized impression on MLB in the near future. At the plate, he's a line-drive hitter with a little pop for now, but his excellent bat speed and ability to adjust portends a better future than that. Minnesota is well-known for cooking their prospects until they're well-done, and he has a scary wrist injury to come back from in 2015, so don't expect him immediately. When he does arrive, however, it should be for the long haul.
More Scouting Book Info on Byron Buxton
SB 1 BA SC BP SN ES ML 1
He's clearly no shortstop anymore (as Scouting Book readers knew to expect) and a year recovering from TJ surgery won't help his ranking much, but that shouldn't stop Miguel Sano from hanging around in the uppermost prospect room in Minnesota. The biggest Latin American signing of 2009, Sano seemed like a coup of sorts for the small market Twins. A coveted athlete pursued by all the usual big-market teams, it was Minnesota's relentless (one might say 'piranha-like') tenacity that finally landed the youngster. While his bat is enticing, the rest of his game is more typical of a still-young player: sloppy and inconsistent. He'll need to become a better fielder and baserunner, at the very least, before he's treated with proper respect in the big
More Scouting Book Info on Miguel Sano
SB 7 BA SC BP SN ES ML 7
A long and lean righthander from Texas, Kohl Stewart is the embodiment of pitching potential, and as long as he remains a Twin, he's got a very good chance at reaching that potential. His stuff is very raw, and other than his slider doesn't do much, but his fastball was already cracking 90mph as a high-schooler, which means there are almost certainly a few more ticks to come. As a starter for St. Pius X in Houston, Stewart made eight starts (40 innings) in which he struck out 59 and walked 16. (His ERA was an hilarious 0.18). A multi-sport athlete, he's also done very well as a football player (as a high school senior, he threw for 2,560 yards and 28 touchdowns). In a small taste of pro baseball last season, Stewart struck out 24 Rookie league batters in 20 innings of work while walking only four. He'll step up slowly, first to A-ball in 2014, and the Twins will take their sweet time making sure he earns every promotion along the way.
More Scouting Book Info on Kohl Stewart
SB 22 BA SC BP SN ES ML 21
First drafted by the Red Sox way back in 2008, righthander Alex Meyer passed on an alleged $2M signing bonus to go attend U Kentucky, in order to reenter the draft in 2011. Apparently, he spent his time in school eating well: the youngster now tips the scales at 6-10 and 230lbs.
A power pitcher (no kidding) with a high-90's fastball and a wicked slider, he's got stuff to burn, but a sometimes-wonky delivery and spotty command have plagued him through his young career. The Nats, flush with confidence at the depth of their rotation, parted with him in a trade to Minnesota in exchange for Denard Span, but that's no indication of any dodgy quality: he simply moves from being a top Washington pitching prospect to being a top Minnesota number one pitching prospect... and the Twins have shown a great ability to develop young arms. So while the move to Nicetown might slow his debut by a couple of years (the Twins are notoriously slow and cautious with young arms), it might also improve his chances of being solid and polished when he does arrive.
More Scouting Book Info on Alex Meyer
SB 28 BA SC BP SN ES ML 27
Drafted as a teenager from Puerto Rico to open 2012's compensation round, Jose Orlando (J-O) Berrios is a smallish righthander with good arm strength that springs a compact but strong frame. His short delivery suggests mechanical soundness, even if it's a bit jerky, with a fastball that can pop at 96mph and a breaking ball that looks like a real plus offering. He'll slow-cook in Minnesota after signing, but if he stays healthy, it won't be long before he's seen as a top-flight phenom in a system good at maximizing pitcher value.
More Scouting Book Info on Jose Berrios
SB 34 BA SC BP SN ES ML 33
If you believe in bloodlines, you have to be a fan of Nick Gordon, brother of Dee Gordon, second-born son of Tom Gordon, and natural heir to all the kingdoms of the north. At least, those kingdoms that are bounded by Target Field.
Signed by the Twins after being selected fifth overall in 2014, Gordon could follow in the footsteps of either family member: as a pitcher he brings easy low-90's heat and a solid curveball from the right side, while as a hitter he's the proud owner of a smooth left-handed swing and good wheels to go along with it. With a good natural grace in the field and a strong arm, he might be best developed as a shortstop until and unless he proves he can't perform. Given his lineage, one probably shouldn't bet against him.
More Scouting Book Info on Nick Gordon
SB 35 BA SC BP SN ES ML 37
A tall, powerful strikeout artist, Guerra has been considered in both starting and bullpen roles for the last couple of years. He should be easy to lock up in the late rounds of a deep draft this year, but he promises to be much more attractive (and widely known) next year. With electric stuff but not much pro experience under his belt yet, Guerra will probably keep striking out a batter per inning until the Twins' brain trust can't ignore him anymore.
More Scouting Book Info on Deolis Guerra
SB 109 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A ground ball pitcher who seems to handle lefties just as well as right-handed batters, Robertson is just one of another out-machine to come from the Twins pitching factory. The combination of his strong K-BB ratio, nasty repertoire and odd delivery have gained him a few 'left-handed Lincecum' comparisons, but nobody will mistake his 6-6 frame for the diminutive Giant. After dominating the lower levels, he stumbled a bit in AA two years ago, but seems to have found his feet now, as his 88 strikeouts in 89 AA innings last season was right in line with his excellent career pattern.
More Scouting Book Info on Tyler Robertson
SB 127 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Pitching prospect Trevor May, a sometimes-forgotten part of the December 2012 trade for Ben Revere, has seen his spotlight turn a bit brighter thanks to his arrival in an organization well-known for developing quality arms.
Not that he needs all that much more development: as a Phillies prospect, May was already showing three good pitches with regularity, and he's already had some pretty eye-opening success at low levels of minor league ball. He stumbled a bit when first faced with higher level batters, but that sort of adjustment period is common, and it shouldn't scare the Twins or their fans. May remains a very solid and still-developing athlete. His fastball is a standard 92-94 offering with heavy sink, and his secondary pitches (a hammer curve and a straight change) are almost ready for more advanced hitters.
More Scouting Book Info on Trevor May
SB 247 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A well-rounded righthander from Ohio State drafted the Twins in the first round of 2010, Alex Wimmers was that rare example of a college pitcher who already showed control of three pitches, including a genuine plus changeup, before ever setting foot on a professional mound. A big-game pitcher who excelled under pressure in college, Wimmers showed consistent shutdown ability whenever the Buckeyes needed it, but he seemed more than a little wild at high-A Fort Myers last year, though he did calm down later in the year after a little off-field work on his approach to the craft, and looked close to his old self by the end of the season. His uncanny ability to outsmart hitters rather than blow them away with his stuff has always been his primary asset, so it should be no real surprise that his effectiveness hinges on the sharpness of his mental game, and that's never been as true as 2013, when he'll be working his way back from late-season TJ surgery. He will need patience and wile in order to rediscover and/or reinvent his delivery as a result. If the enigma of his ability/performance dichotomy can be untangled, he'll be an asset, though, no matter whether he comes as part of the rotation or the bullpen.
More Scouting Book Info on Alex Wimmers
SB 303 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A second round pick from the 2006 draft, outfielder Joe Benson skipped out on Purdue to jump into the Twins system, where he's been growing and developing ever since. He's the proud owner of above average wheels at near plus speed, and a solid plus arm, making his defense high quality all around. At the plate, the Twins will be looking for a little more discipline, since he does have a habit of chasing breaking balls, but other than that he's looking awfully close to ready. Benson smashed a precocious .303/.395/.485 at high-A Ft Myers, then looked outclassed in AA and during a relief stint on the MLB roster in 2012, but try not to hold that against him. He should be back and better than that in 2013.
More Scouting Book Info on Joe Benson
SB 335 BA SC BP SN ES ML
One of the top pitchers in Latin America from 2010's signing period, righthander Felix Jorge is one of the most promising Latin American prospects in baseball. He entertained offers from several MLB teams, but the Twins made the best push after seeing him perform at an all-scouts tryout in early 2011.
Jorge wields a 90-92mph fastball with a loose, repeatable arm action and has already shown advanced feel for a quality breaking ball. He's several years away from being a serious force, but he's got the right mix of physical, mental and toolsy makeup... and now he's in the perfect system to develop his potential.
More Scouting Book Info on Felix Jorge
SB 350 BA SC BP SN ES ML
He's not overpowering and his stuff is only a bit above average, but lefty Sean Gilmartin exceeded expectations by pitching smarter and with more cunning than anyone in the Braves organization. His guile brought him to the attention of the value-feeding Twins, who acquired him in December, 2013. A first round selection out of Florida State in 2011, his command and control look very good, especially his changeup, which seems a lot more advanced than his experience would suggest. Can smarts and touch get him all the way to The Show? And if he does it in Minnesota, will anyone notice?
More Scouting Book Info on Sean Gilmartin
SB 352 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A well rounded outfielder with great tools and a dedicated commitment to improving his skills, Twins outfielder Eddie Rosario could be a big sleeper star for Minnesota by mid-to-late 2013. He's only twenty, but Eddie's .296/.345/.490 Midwest line (with 48 extra-base hits in 95 games) looks frighteningly good, doesn't it? Miguel Sano will get the lion's share of glowing press in the next few years, but Eddie Rosario could be right at home hitting behind him.
More Scouting Book Info on Eddie Rosario
SB 405 BA SC BP SN ES ML
A first-round pick in the 2011 draft from the University of North Carolina, Twins shortstop prospect Levi Michael was the first everyday college player drafted first by the Twins since 1996 (Travis Lee.) Levi is an athletic switch-hitter with good bat speed and more than a hint of future power in his bat. Michael slashed .306/.432/.510 in his three years with the Tar Heels, stealing 40 bases with a nice 85% success rate.
While he played second, third and short during his UNC days, Michael's developing bat is expected to settle in at second base for the future Twins.
More Scouting Book Info on Levi Michael
SB 421 BA SC BP SN ES ML
Max Kepler-Rozycki is a big, strong, German-born outfielder deep in the Minnesota Twins system. He gets high marks from scouts for his instincts, baseball build and raw tools. At the same time, he's very young and hasn't established much of a baseline in professional play yet: we haven't yet seen him in anything higher than Appy-League play (.262/.347/.366 in only 191 at-bats). In that time, Kepler showed decent contact ability and good speed, coupled with some pretty rough but promising defense. He's been tested in each outfield position, and seems most comfortable as a left-fielder, though that has to be written in the faintest of pencil at this point. Give Kepler a couple of years, then check back to see whether he's blossomed enough that we can start making puns about stars yet.
More Scouting Book Info on Max Kepler
SB 447 BA SC BP SN ES ML