Miguel Sano

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Just a reminder that Pelotero, the documentary about baseball in the Dominican Republic that just so happens to feature the talents of prospect beast Miguel Sano, comes out this weekend. At least, it does if you live in roughly ten cities around the US.

I’ll be trying to catch a screening in LA this weekend and click here for screening information in your nearest metropolitan area. 

Hot Corner Hot Seat

Hello dear reader, it’s been a hot minute. Speaking of hot things, how about the hot corner?  Losing Pablo Sandoval to the Red Sox can be a huge emotional blow with serious repercussions to the Giants lineup. I actually went through the Kubler-Ross stages of grieving when I found out that Sandoval was leaving San Francisco. First, I didn’t believe the articles, labeling the sources as misinformed or incorrect. Then I became angry with Sandoval—and David Ortiz for wooing him away. I spent a little time bargaining by telling the baseball gods I would never displease them again if they made Sandoval fail his physical. Next, I became depressed. Finally, I accepted it.

In reality, the loss of Sandoval is not about Panda hat sales—thank the baseball gods I shorted Panda hat futures in San Francisco—but it presents a major hole in the Giants lineup. During the better part of 2014, Sandoval and Buster Posey rotated between the three hold and the clean up spot in the order—Sandoval batting clean up against right handers and Posey taking the spot against south paws.  With the Kung-Fu Panda’s big bat now in Boston Red, no Big Show ready in-house replacements, and the lack of any superstar free agents, the Giants will have to drop their order—realistically, the best they can do is get a Michael Morse/Aubrey Huff type.  

That guy could well be Chase Headley—the man with the name Jon Miller loves to say. Headley’s agent has put out word that one of the interested clubs has put a four year, $65 million offer in front of the 30 year old third baseman and it sounds like the team to offer was the Giants. I very much suggest taking a look at this comparison between Sandoval and Headley and taking a look at all of the offensive categories.  If Headley can pull out a 2012-like season, he’d be a major asset to the San Francisco lineup.

The other major off season move that the Giants could potentially make is the signing of left handed ace, Jon Lester. Lester would give the Giants a gnarly south paw 1-2 alongside postseason hero, Madison Bumgarner and while the Giants are very much in the running to sign the highly coveted free agent, the high spending Dodgers and Red Sox are among the other suitors and the final price tag will be very rich.

Michael Morse will likely he’ll end up as a designated hitter somewhere in the American League rather than return to San Francisco in 2015. The Giants will likely only offer him a one year deal whereas there will be more than a couple AL teams willing to negotiate a multi year contract. It makes sense, he’s a great guy with a great bat but a poor glove and the Giants already have a bad fielding left fielder, Travis Ishikawa who they officially resigned to a one year, $1.1 million deal. 

The Giants also resigned Hector Sanchez to a one year, $800,000 contract but, depending on how Spring Training pans out, I would imagine that the Giants will go with Posey and Andrew Susac as their catchers to open the season. Susac hit for average and put up similar 2014 numbers as Sanchez who had nearly twice as many at bats and hit below .200.  When Sanchez went down with a concussion, Susac came up and proved that he was ready to be a full time catcher in the Big Show. People (myself) have long speculated that Susac is Posey’s heir apparent at catcher and when/if Posey is moved to first base, the young lookalike will take over.

I’ve had a couple Angel Pagan related nightmares already this off season—I really, truly still cannot believe that the Giants A) made the postseason without Pagan and B) won the World Series with Gregor Blanco as their lead off man. Pagan presumably had surgery on September 25 but since it was reported that he would undergo a procedure to shave part of a herniated disc in his back, there has been zero news about how the surgery went or how well his recovery is going. The initial prognosis was that Pagan would be out for three months and when this was reported on September 23, everyone took it to mean that the Giants were DOA when it came to the postseason.

I’m hoping that Pagan is healing well but we all know how the back surgery story line can play out (cue Marco Scutaro). Regardless of Pagan’s health, General Manager Brian Sabean will hopefully look to add some depth in the outfield in the coming weeks.  Juan Perez didn’t do so hot in a backup role last season and the jury is still out on whether Gary Brown is Major League ready let alone whether he will ever live up to the expectations. Barring a significant outfield addition, I could see Brown start 2015 in Triple-A Fresno before joining the club early in the season and I’d like to see him succeed—he’s fast and exciting when he’s playing right—and it might be time to give the 26 year old a chance to prove himself.

Marco Scutaro has certainly lost his starting position to Joe Panik and will be lucky to ride the pine for the final year of his $20 million contract. Sadly, the Venezuela simply does not seem to have the longevity of his compatriot, Omar Vizquel.

Random News

Minnesota’s Miguel Sano hasn’t played in any of the winter leagues but according the Carl Crawford, another of the rare position players to go through Tommy John, the surgery won’t diminish the powerful youngster’s swing

The Twins will add another powerful bat to their 2015 lineup after bringing back 39 year old, Torii Hunter for a one year, $10 million contract. Minnesota drafted Hunter in the first round of the 1993 amateur draft (20th overall) and he spent the first nine seasons of his career there. Hunter created a mini-controversy during the off season when he supported an anti-gay marriage candidate for the Arkansas gubernatorial campaign which lead to this weird interaction with a Twins beat reporter.  I’ll be honest, I had to google “bad words starting with p” in order to figure out what “p—-k” was. The answer is prick.

Miguel Sano to have sore elbow examined

Miguel Sano to have sore elbow examined

http://www.espn.com

The Minnesota Twins have a bright future when it comes to their minor league system. Two guys: Byron Buxton and Miguel Sano are expected to make a credible impact on the big league club once their time arrives. However, there is concern for the latter.

Sano, who is rated the No. 2 prospect in the Twins farm system behind Buxton, was expected to have his right elbow examined on…

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Twins Turn to Young Talent in 2014

The Minnesota Twins announced today that prospects Alex Meyer, Miguel Sano and Byron Buxton have all been invited to Spring Training. Buxton may be another year out from joining the big league club, but Meyer and Sano will probably have a chance to make an impact for the Twins sometime in 2014. This may be a rebuilding year for a team that is offensively inconsistent and has a retooled pitching rotation.

The success, or lack thereof, in the coming year determines whether a couple of these young men see time in a big league uniform. If Trevor Plouffe struggles to bounce back from a disappointing 2013, Sano will have a chance to take over at third base. Meyer could join the club if the new look pitching rotation falters. Phil Hughes and Mike Pelfrey are two free agent signings that may not pan out the way Minnesota wants, but there is no question these two have the potential to give the Twins 200 plus innings with strikeout stuff. Byron Buxton likely makes his big league debut in 2015 after he makes stops at AA New Britain and AAA Rochester. 

One man I think is slated for a breakout year is outfielder Oswaldo Arcia. This guy has tremendous power and the ball flies off his bat, but he has to cut down on the strikeouts. With some major league experience under his belt, I expect him to make the necessary adjustments and be someone the Twins can count on in the middle of their lineup. Aaron Hicks did not see the success Arcia had in his rookie year, and he probably starts the season off in Rochester. The trades of Denard Span and Ben Revere before the start of the 2013 season forced the Twins to bring up Hicks early from New Britain. Without the experience in Rochester, Hicks struggled at the plate. His play defensively is sound as he can make all the throws and can cover more ground than your average center fielder. He rewarded fans everywhere with spectacular plays including taking a home run away from former Twins center fielder Carlos Gomez. 

Twins may or may not play in the postseason in 2014, but fans everywhere are looking for improvement. For three straight years, they have lost more than 90 games in a season. I do not think this team will lose more than 90 games this year, and I believe they can be a top three team in the loaded American League Central. After a few disappointing seasons, fans should be excited about the coming years in Minnesota as they continue to build towards returning to the top of the American League Central. 

The 2013 MLB Futures Game is about to begin but…. Where is everyone?

You’ve got Carlos CorreaMiguel Sano, Noah Syndergaard, Billy Hamilton, Archie BradleyHenry Urrutia (Go O’s!), Xander Bogaerts, Taijuan Walker, all in one place… come on!

*I’m most excited to see the players in bold. Also, Christian Walker and Eduardo Rodriguez from the Orioles.

Please vote below for The Miguel Sano Story for IndieWire’s Project of the Week.

The winning filmmaker will receive a digital distribution consultation from SnagFilms and will become a candidate for Project of the Month. That winner will be awarded with a creative consultation from the fine folks at the Tribeca Film Institute!

Miguel Sano Records Video in Hospital Bed

Miguel Sano Records Video in Hospital Bed

Minnesota Twins prospect Miguel Sano has found his way to be in front of the camera lately. First, he was a part of a documentary showing the process of international players signing with MLB teams.

Now, he’s starring in a documentary of his own.

Sano underwent Tommy John elbow surgery Wednesday. But before he went under the knife (he was literally laying in a hospital bed) he wanted to let his…

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An Interview with Miguel Sano, "The Next Big Thing"

As a student, the week nights are packed with homework and studying, homework and studying, and so forth. However, aside from a History report I had to conclude, my February 19th Wednesday night was not an average one, as I landed an interview with the one and only third base prospect of the Minnesota Twins, Miguel Sano.

A portion of the interview I conducted with Miguel Sano

Of course Miguel…

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Twins' Sano Could DH In Minors

#Twins’ Sano Could DH In Minors #MLB

There’s a strong chance that Twins third base prospect Miguel Sano will miss the entire season following Tommy John elbow surgery.

However, because the operation is easier to come back from for hitters than pitchers the team is leaving open the possibility that he could serve as a designated hitter late in the minor league schedule. Sano is expected to need eight months of rehab before he’s ready…

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Sending the Wrong Message

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It has been 79 days since the last time I wrote about the Twins. There are several reasons for the hiatus, a new job and a move to OKC chief among them. But it also had a lot do with the team itself, and the fact that there is only so much you can say about a team that has racked up 291 losses over the past three seasons (!!!). In a world where seemingly every baseball fan has his own blog, there are only so many articles to write about Byron Buxton and Miguel Sano. But on the eve of a ten-hour drive back home to South Dakota for Thanksgiving, I feel compelled to say a few things about the most recent Twins Hot Stove report, one that apparently has them pushing for two more years of Mike Pelfrey.

This past weekend, I found myself defending a tweet about the team’s rumored interest in Bronson Arroyo. For what it’s worth, I could care less whether the team spends a dime on starting pitching this offseason. Next year promises to be another long season in Twins territory regardless, and in today’s MLB landscape where losing is rewarded by larger international bonus pools and higher draft spending allotments, if the team is going to be bad again it might as well be really bad. That logic notwithstanding, the point I was trying to make with Arroyo is that by signing a proven starting pitcher (albeit one who will be 37 years old next season) to a legitimate multiyear contract (one approaching $10M annually), the Twins front office would at least send a message to fans – and more importantly the rest of baseball – that it understands the current free agent market. If nothing else, such a deal would demonstrate an awareness that the only way to sign a reputable free agent starting pitcher in 2013 – one with a better track record than Kevin Correia or Mike Pelfrey – is to pay the going rate. After three straight 90-loss seasons during which I watched more games than I care to admit, that’s all I’m really looking for this offseason – some indication that things will be different going forward.

Which brings me back to Pelfrey. I have nothing against Mike Pelfrey as a person. He was a perfectly adequate fifth starter last year, and I’m sure he will be something similar for whichever team he pitches for in 2014. But that is all he is, and that is all he will ever be. Pelfrey has been a borderline replacement-level starter throughout his entire eight-year career, and if there is one thing the Twins don’t need right now, it is another one of those. Is paying market value for Arroyo, Ricky Nolasco, or any other mid-tier free agent starter going to make the Twins contenders in 2014? Hell no…far from it. But at some point, the symbolism of signing such a player becomes just as important as the name on the back of his jersey.

The next year promises to be a very important one for the Minnesota Twins. A wave of prospects via the best farm system in baseball will soon be arriving in droves, making contention in the not-so-distant future a legitimate possibility. With an estimated $30-$40 million to play with this offseason and just two players under contract in 2015, the free agent decisions made by Terry Ryan and company going forward will ultimately determine how quickly that promise becomes a reality. But the team cannot afford to wait until Buxton is patrolling center and Sano is manning the hot corner to start making good decisions. The time has come for the organization to demonstrate that it is capable of more than just procuring young talent. In my  opinion, signing up for two more years of Mike Pelfrey does not send that message. #p2c