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Minnesota Twins 2015 Prospect Vote: Round 12

Lewis Thorpe...with authoritah.

Brian Bahr/Getty Images

As expected, Lewis Thorpe destroyed the field in Round 11 and earns himself the first spot on our list outside of the Top 10. It's hard to deny Thorpe's upside considering his youth relative to experience level, even if it's worth keeping an eye on his arm. Oddly enough, coming in at number 11 is a one spot demotion from where he was on 2014's list.

No additions this round, or probably for the next two or three rounds. Ready? Let's go.

Twins Top 30 prospects for 2015

  1. Byron Buxton, CF (Buxton 72%, Sano 28%)
  2. Miguel Sano, 3B (Sano 56%, Berrios 44%)
  3. Jose Berrios, RHP (Berrios 73%, Meyer 16%, Stewart 4%, Gordon 4%, Polanco 3%)
  4. Alex Meyer, RHP (Meyer 63%, Stewart 17%, Polanco 10%, Gordon 10%)
  5. Kohl Stewart, RHP (Stewart 56%, Polanco 26%, Gordon 18%)
  6. Trevor May, RHP (May 28%, Gordon 27%, Polanco 21%, Rosario 20%, Thorpe 4%)
  7. Nick Gordon, SS (Gordon 35%, Polanco 30%, Rosario 29%, Thorpe 6%)
  8. Nick Burdi, RHP (Burdi 38%, Polanco 31%, Rosario 23%, Thorpe 8%)
  9. Jorge Polanco, SS/2B (Polanco 51%, Rosario 36%, Thorpe 13%)
  10. Eddie Rosario, OF/2B (Rosario 72%, Thorpe 18%, Gonsalves 4%, Reed 3%, Duffey 2%, Rogers 0%)
  11. Lewis Thorpe, LHP (Thorpe 48%, Kepler 21%, Reed 10%, Gonsalves 9%, Duffey 5%, Walker 4%, Turner 1%, Harrison 1%, Rogers 1%)

Tyler Duffey, RHP
2015 Age: 24
2014 High Level: Triple-A

Year Age Lvl ERA G GS IP WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 K/9 K:BB
2012 21 Rookie 1.42 12 0 19.0 0.63 4.7 0.5 0.9 12.8 13.5
2013 22 A+, A 3.64 24 18 121.0 1.15 8.6 0.6 1.7 6.8 4.0
2014 23 A+, AA, AAA 3.67 25 25 149.2 1.15 8.5 1.0 1.8 6.8 3.8
3 Seasons 3.51 61 43 289.2 1.12 8.3 0.8 1.7 7.2 4.2

Duffey is one of Minnesota's 2012 draft picks that profile as a reliever, but who has been utilized as a starter. He's been effective in that role so far, in spite of being a closer for Rice, and in 2014 he worked his way to the top echelon of the Twins' farm system.

In Duffey's favor are his numbers as well as his body type and pitch arsenal. As a starter his fastball sits in the low 90s, compared to the upper 90s as a reliever. It's backed up by a plus curve and a developing changeup.

It will be interesting to see where the Twins place him to start the season. With so many pitchers available to fill out the rotation in Rochester, including quite probably Alex Meyer and Trevor May, it wouldn't be surprising to see Duffey begin 2015 in Double-A Chattanooga. But he's ready for Triple-A, and he should spend most of 2015 with the Red Wings. He could even see a cup of coffee with the Twins in September.

Travis Harrison, LF
2015 Age: 22
2014 High Level: Advanced-A

2012 19 Rookie 253 12 5 24 51 .301 .383 .461 .845
2013 20 A 537 28 15 68 125 .253 .366 .416 .782
2014 21 A+ 537 33 3 64 86 .269 .361 .365 .726
3 Seasons 1327 73 23 156 262 .269 .368 .404 .771

It was an interesting 2014 for Harrison, who shifted both his defensive position and his offensive priorities. Minnesota is making a commitment to Miguel Sano at third base, and shifted Harrison to the outfield as a result. It's not surprising, considering most scouts expected Harrison to be shifted off of third eventually. At the plate, Harrison hit just three home runs (compared to 15 in 2013) in the pitcher-friendly Florida State League, but managed to post strong walk rates while cutting down significantly on the strikeouts.

By the Twins websites' own admission, Harrison doesn't have any plus tools. On the other hand, nearly all of the tools are roughly average. Numerous reports list him as a potential bench or platoon option down the line. The question is: do you believe in the tools? 2015 will be a telling year for the 50th overall pick in the 2011 draft.

Jake Reed, RHP
2015 Age: 22
2014 High Level: Single-A

Year Age Lvl ERA G IP WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 K/9 K:BB
2014 21 A 0.36 16 25.0 0.52 3.6 0.0 1.1 11.2 10.3

Reed is, in a way, the opposite of the Twins' pitching draft class of 2012: he could be a starter, but the team looks like they intend to continue using him as a reliever. That works in his favor as far as this list is concerned, because as a starter his upside would be quite limited. But as a reliever, his season as a reliever in Minnesota's system was rivalled only by Nick Burdi.

The Twins have worked with Reed a good deal on his mechanics and have smoothed out his delivery, once so high maintenance, and as a result he's looking like a gem of a selection. With a high-velocity fastball with good movement, a devastating slider, and a changeup in progress, Reed may profile as a mid-teens level prospect for 2015...but he could be off of this list altogether at this time next year if things go well. He certainly looked good in the Arizona Fall League.

Taylor Rogers, LHP
2015 Age: 24
2014 High Level: Double-A

Year Age Lvl ERA G GS IP WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 K/9 K:BB
2012 21 Rookie, A 2.27 15 10 63.1 1.11 7.5 1.0 2.4 10.5 4.4
2013 22 A, A+ 2.88 25 24 140.2 1.20 8.5 0.4 2.3 6.0 2.6
2014 23 AA 3.29 24 24 145.0 1.29 9.3 0.2 2.3 7.0 3.1
3 Seasons 2.94 64 58 349.0 1.22 8.7 0.4 2.3 7.2 3.1

After a fine but unspectacular 2013, Rogers delivered a solid performance as the stalwart of New Britain's rotation in 2014. He offers a low 90s fastball with a good changeup in the lower 80s and a mid 70s curve. While he isn't a strikeout pitcher, he attacks the corners with a game plan to get the batter to swing at the pitches he chooses. It works, and he gets a lot of ground balls as a result.

Right now, Rogers profiles as a fringe back-end starter. Those players are always necessary for any club, and they carry value in team-control years. With a strong 2015 it's possible that Rogers sees time with the Twins by season's end.

Rogers is in the same boat as Duffey, in that the sheer quantity of starters who should be available to fill out the rotation in Triple-A could result in him starting the year at Double-A. But he should spend most of 2015 in Triple-A, which is where he belongs.

Stuart Turner, C
2015 Age: 23
2014 High Level: Advanced-A

2013 21 Rookie, AA 146 5 3 12 23 .272 .345 .384 .729
2014 22 A+ 364 16 7 31 61 .249 .322 .375 .698
2 Seasons 510 21 10 43 84 .256 .329 .378 .707

I can see why it's hard for people to get too excited by Turner, but the fact is that most scouts see him as a future starter. His catch-and-throw skills and his arm rate highly, he moves well and is mechanically sound, pitchers love throwing to him and his coaches talk about his advanced understanding of the game.

His splits versus right-handed pitchers indicated in 2014 that's his strong side, but the truth is that Turner's offense may never be anything to write home about. There's some power there, but the contact skills aren't seen as anything other than below average. Still, if a guy is an excellent defensive catcher and hits 10 or 15 home runs a year, a .240 batting average isn't going to bother anyone.

Turner will spend most of 2015 at Double-A. He's not on the 40-man roster, so if he isn't added by the end of the season it will be interesting to see where the Twins place him at this time next year. When Kurt Suzuki's contract expires in two years, we may see Turner splitting time behind the plate with Pinto.

Adam Walker, RF
2015 Age: 23
2014 High Level: Advanced-A

2012 20 Rookie 252 7 14 4 0 19 76 .250 .310 .496 .805
2013 21 A 552 31 27 10 0 31 115 .278 .319 .526 .844
2014 22 A+ 555 19 25 9 5 44 156 .246 .307 .436 .743
3 Seasons 1359 57 66 23 5 94 347 .259 .312 .484 .796

If you want to vote for a player with a truly plus tool, Walker's power rates as a 65 on the 20-80 scale. That's somewhere between "good" and "All-Star" respect for what could be some of the best power in the system. It's worth mentioning that he hit those 25 home runs in a pitcher-friendly league. He's hit 52 home runs over the last two years - it's safe to say Walker can mash the baseball.

When he hits it, that is. Walker's hit tool is below average, and he can be aggressive which leads to a great deal of strikeouts. And while his arm is certainly strong enough for right field, his defensive ratings aren't as telling. Consistency could be an issue, with some scouts praising his fielding as adequate while others believe he's headed to left field because he's not terribly accurate with his throws.

For Walker to be successful, he has to prove he can continue to display his power in games and not just batting practice, and he needs to find a way to make more contact or he's going to be a .200 hitter whose power can't be used because he doesn't get on base often enough to provide any level of consistency.He should start the season in Double-A, where it would be wonderful to see him post a strong first half and earn a promotion to Triple-A before the end of the summer.