2013 Twins Spring Training Non-Roster Invitee: James Beresford

Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Could Beresford offer the Twins Major League depth in the middle infield?

James Beresford, 2B/SS
Age: 24

It wasn't too long ago that we considered Beresford a prospect who, if things went well, could contribute at the Major League level. The talent is certainly there. Whether or not it's Major League-quality talent is what's in question.

He's always been considered a competent defender up the middle, but to date he hasn't been able to consistently drive the ball in a way that shows scouts that he'll be able to hit enough to make an impact. That assessment has been backed up by the numbers, particularly the last two years.

2007 18 Twins Rk 45 158 40 2 0 7 2 12 23 .288 .349 .302
2008 19 Elizabethton Rk 55 211 44 5 0 1 4 25 35 .246 .345 .285
2009 20 Beloit A 114 505 130 11 0 15 11 34 70 .289 .342 .313
2010 21 2 Teams A-Fgn 138 595 167 25 1 14 14 36 60 .308 .357 .378
2011 22 Fort Myers A+ 131 545 131 12 0 4 8 43 63 .270 .328 .299
2012 23 New Britain AA 114 413 98 12 0 3 3 35 53 .266 .330 .314
6 Seasons 597 2427 610 67 1 44 42 185 304 .282 .341 .323
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 2/20/2013.

Now that he's been in the system for six years, the Twins are giving Beresford an opportunity by giving him an invitation to spring training. To further the reality check, scouts have also questioned in recent years whether or not he has an arm strong enough to be an everyday shortstop. Not that the word of the scouts should be a deal breaker, since we know plenty of shortstops whose arms aren't necessarily a plus, but it's a hard thing to get around when you can't hit.

At 24 in 2013 and with a real opportunity to make or break his own chance, Beresford's time is now. He has the potential to be an organizational guy, but no baseball player strives to be minor league filler. He'll need to impress, even if the middle infield depth chart isn't all that deep.

Chances of making the team: Unlikely.

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