The Minnesota Twins have seven players taking part in the Arizona Fall League, with all seven on the roster of the Glendale Desert Dogs. The rest of the team is comprised of minor leaguers from the Dodgers, Marlins, Reds and White Sox organizations. Here’s an early look at how the Twins’ minor leaguers have fared so far in the AFL, which runs through Nov. 16.
OF Byron Buxton
2013 stats: .334/.424/.520, 12 HR, 77 RBI, 18 triples, 55 steals (stats are combined between Low-A Cedar Rapids and High-A Fort Myers)
AFL stats: 3-for-15 (.200), 2B, 2 RBI, 5 K in three games; has one hit in each game
Notes: Buxton is not only the most high-profiled Twins minor leaguer in the AFL but will very likely be the most widely-watched prospect this fall. The No. 2 overall pick in the 2012 draft, Buxton tore up two different minor league levels this season en route to being named Minor League Player of the Year by Baseball America. At 19 years old, Buxton is one of the youngest players participating in the AFL, but the Twins felt their heralded prospect was ready for the challenge.
2B Eddie Rosario
2013 stats: .302/.350/.460, 10 HR, 73 RBI, 10 SB (stats are combined between High-A Fort Myers and Double-A New Britain)
AFL stats: 3-for-10 (.300), 3 RBI, 2 K, SB in two games
Notes: Rosario had a solid year in the minors, joining fellow prospect Miguel Sano in making the jump from Single-A to Double-A during the season. After playing both second base and outfield last year, Rosario was transitioned to a full-time second baseman in 2013 and will play there in the AFL.
1B Max Kepler
2013 stats: .237/.312/.424, 9 HR, 40 RBI in 61 games with Low-A Cedar Rapids
AFL stats: 2-for-10 (.200), RBI, 3 K in two games
Notes: Kepler, a product of Germany, played his first season in A ball but didn’t debut with the Kernels until late June. He spent 30 games in the outfield with Cedar Rapids but is playing first base — where he played 24 games in 2013 — in the AFL.
RHP Zack Jones
2013 stats: 4-3, 1.85 ERA, 14 saves, 70 K, 28 BB in 48 ⅔ IP with High-A Fort Myers
AFL stats: 0-0, 27.00 ERA (6 R, 5 ER in 1 ⅔ IP), 3 K, HR
Notes: The Twins drafted Jones in the fourth round of the 2012 draft out of San Jose State. The 22-year-old right-hander had a strong year as a reliever with Fort Myers in 2013 — his first full minor league season.
RHP Alex Meyer
2013 stats: 4-3, 3.21 ERA, 84 K, 29 BB in 70 IP with Double-A New Britain
AFL stats: 0-0, 9.00 ERA, 3 R, 3 IP, 3 K, 1 BB in one start
Notes: Meyer was one of two big pitching prospects acquired last offseason, as the Twins traded outfielder Denard Span in exchange for Meyer. The 6-foot-9 right-hander battled a shoulder injury that limited him to just 13 starts this year. Because of the missed time, Minnesota is hoping Meyer can gain some valuable experience by pitching in the AFL.
RHP Trevor May
2013 stats: 9-9, 4.51 ERA, 159 K, 67 BB in 151 ⅔ IP with Double-A New Britain
AFL stats: 0-0, 0.00 ERA, 1 IP, 1 K
Notes: Along with Meyer, May was another offseason acquisition last year. Minnesota traded Ben Revere in exchange for May and pitching Vance Worley. May’s strikeout numbers were impressive in the minors, and he’s a pitcher who could make his major league debut in 2014. With 20 pitchers on the Desert Dogs’ roster, innings may be hard to come by for May and the other Twins pitchers this fall.
RHP A.J. Achter
2013 stats: 3-2, 2.54 ERA, 56 K, 33 BB in 60.1 IP (combined between Double-A New Britain and Triple-A Rochester)
AFL stats: 0-0, 0.00 ERA, 1 IP, 1 K
Notes: Achter, 25, is the oldest of the seven Twins minor leaguers playing in the AFL this fall and the only one who played at the Triple-A level in 2013. He was promoted from Double-A New Britain in early July and posted a 3.04 ERA in 16 appearances at Triple-A.