2013 Minnesota Twins Top Prospect Vote: Round 25

USA TODAY Sports

Welcome to the final round of Twinkie Town's community prospect voting for 2013.

As D.J. Baxendale and Levi Michael battle it out for the 23rd and 24th spots in our Top 25 prospect list, on this ballot we're looking for our final winner between the final seven contestants. I hope you've enjoyed the voting this year and the changes we made to the system, even if the process took us a bit longer than originally planned!

Presented for your debate: our 25th ballot and the seven candidates vying for your vote. America!

Adam Walker, OF
2013 Age: 21
2012 Top Level: Elizabethton, 252 PA (Rookie)

Year Age Lev PA H 2B HR BB SO BA OBP SLG
2012 20 Rk 252 58 7 14 19 76 .250 .310 .496
1 Season 252 58 7 14 19 76 .250 .310 .496
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 3/17/2013.


We have yet another rookie-level player on our list. Rookie-level players are so far away from the majors that their upside is still hazy, which isn't always a bad thing but it's easier to be optimistic about players whose track records don't have years of dents and scouting reports about downside. In the case of Walker, the Twins like his power. The danger here is in the strikeout totals. If he doesn't clear that up, he could fall off of our list completely by this time next year.

Zach Jones, RHP
2013 Age: 22
2012 Top Level: Beloit, 14.0 IP (Single-A)

Year Age Lev ERA G GF SV IP WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9
2012 21 Rk 0.00 6 4 0 6.0 1.000 3.0 0.0 6.0 13.5
2012 21 A 3.21 12 10 4 14.0 1.143 5.8 0.6 4.5 16.1
1 Season 2.25 18 14 4 20.0 1.100 5.0 0.4 5.0 15.3
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 3/23/2013.

And still ANOTHER 2012 draft selection, and yet another 2012 draft pitcher, Jones leans on his fastball and slider. Adding a third pitch would be good, but a bigger matter for Jones is working on his command. Whether his walk rates are just a result of a small sample size or mechanics or something else entirely I'm not sure, but even if the Twins are changing their philosophy on the profile of pitchers they like to target they're still going to want a guy whose walk rates are acceptable.

B.J. Hermsen, RHP
2013 Age: 23
2012 Top Level: New Britain, 139.2 IP (Double-A)

Year Age Lev ERA G GS IP WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9
2009 19 Rk 1.35 10 10 53.1 0.675 5.4 0.0 0.7 7.1
2010 20 Rk 3.32 8 6 38.0 1.132 9.2 0.5 0.9 9.2
2010 20 A 5.00 12 12 72.0 1.389 10.6 0.8 1.9 5.8
2011 21 A 3.10 21 20 124.2 1.299 9.5 0.7 2.2 5.8
2011 21 A+ 4.39 5 5 26.2 1.500 11.5 0.3 2.0 6.8
2012 22 A+ 0.78 4 4 23.0 0.913 6.3 0.4 2.0 4.7
2012 22 AA 3.22 22 22 139.2 1.217 9.3 0.8 1.6 4.8
4 Seasons 3.21 82 79 477.1 1.198 9.1 0.6 1.7 5.9
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 3/28/2013.


There's nothing wrong with making your Double-A debut at 22. There's nothing wrong with a 3.21 minor league career ERA in 477 innings. But when your strikeout rates are already abysmal, there isn't much more pinpoint control can do for you. Is there? Some circles like Hermsen. How about you?

Nate Roberts, LF/RF
2013 Age: 24
2012 Top Level: Beloit, 352 PA (Single-A)

Year Age Lev PA H 2B HR SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG
2010 21 Rk 153 43 10 5 5 2 21 29 .336 .444 .547
2011 22 A 283 67 12 4 9 4 28 48 .302 .443 .446
2012 23 A 352 84 18 4 27 8 44 37 .299 .433 .427
3 Seasons 788 194 40 13 41 14 93 114 .307 .439 .458
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 3/28/2013.


What keeps Roberts from being up for voting earlier in this process in his age and level. A player whose career batting average in the minors is .307 with an on-base percentage of .439 is nothing to sneeze at, but when you're 23 at single-A your successes have to be tempered. Roberts probably deserves to sit somewhere in the 20s range, but the question for you is: does he deserve to be a Top 25 talent in the Minnesota system?

Corey Williams, LHP
2013 Age: 22
2012 Top Level: Beloit, 62.1 IP (Single-A)

Year Age Lev ERA G GF SV IP WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9
2011 20 Rk 3.86 7 3 1 11.2 1.457 9.3 0.0 3.9 8.5
2012 21 A 3.47 47 36 17 62.1 1.412 7.9 0.7 4.8 9.8
2 Seasons 3.53 54 39 18 74.0 1.419 8.1 0.6 4.6 9.6
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 3/28/2013.


People like Willaims' polish and stuff, although both of those are considered intangibles and don't necessarily translate to success in the future. He's still striking out more than 20% of batters though, and roughly half of his balls in play have been on the ground, so there are parts of his game that you can see working. His fastball and slider are both pitches he'll lean on going forward.

Tyler Duffey, RHP
2013 Age: 22
2012 Top Level: Elizabethton, 19 IP (Rookie)

Year Age Lev ERA G IP WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9
2012 21 Rk 1.42 12 19.0 0.632 4.7 0.5 0.9 12.8
1 Season 1.42 12 19.0 0.632 4.7 0.5 0.9 12.8
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 3/29/2013.


Duffey is the 74th pitcher on our ballot as a member of the 2012 draft class. As a 21-year old facing largely much younger competition, Duffey did exactly what you'd expect a fairly polished collegiate pitcher to do. Like his former college teammate J.T. Chargois who hit earlier on our list, the next year will go a long way in determining what happens to his prospect status.

Kennys Vargas, 1B
2013 Age: 22
2012 Top Level: Beloit, 186 PA (Single-A)

Year Age Lev PA 2B HR BB SO BA OBP SLG
2009 18 Rk 130 7 3 17 34 .257 .369 .404
2010 19 Rk 160 15 3 13 40 .324 .388 .507
2011 20 Rk 191 11 6 15 50 .322 .377 .489
2012 21 A 186 10 11 28 41 .318 .419 .610
4 Seasons 667 43 23 73 165 .309 .390 .509
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 3/29/2013.


Remember Erik Lis? That guy could mash, but his upside was limited to designated hitter. That could be Vargas, although Vargas also has a hard time keeping his weight in check. Granted, Vargas has better contact skills than Lis and more power, but we're kind of looking at the same player. At 22 this season, he needs to be in Double-A by the end of the year and he needs to continue to put up undeniably strong numbers in order to maintain his prospect potential.

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