Minnesota Twins 2020 MLB draft grades, analysis
The shortened 2020 MLB draft is over and as usual there are thoughts. Maybe not as many thoughts after, say, the NFL or NBA drafts, but nevertheless there are those who will grade and analyze the picks.
To that end, we’ve compiled some grades and some analysis of the Minnesota Twins’ selections, on first-round pick Aaron Sabato (general consensus is a thumbs up, or maybe that should be power up), some on the overall draft and even one person who broke down all four picks (reminder: Minnesota did not have a third-round selection).
Without further ado, here’s a roundup of grades and analysis for the Twins’ 2020 draft class:
Mike Axisa of CBSSports.com: Team grade – C. “The Twins have emphasized college hitters with big-time track records in recent years and that trend continued this year. First rounder Aaron Sabato is an exit velocity god and second rounder Alerick Soularie has good bat-to-ball schools. Sabato and Soularie can hit, but they also come with defensive questions. The Twins traded their Competitive Balance pick to the Dodgers in the Kenta Maeda deal and they forfeited their third rounder to sign Josh Donaldson, so they were short on picks and pool money.”
Jim Callis of MLB.com: “The Twins are buying power and a lot of it with Sabato, a sophomore-eligible slugger who went deep 18 times in his lone full season at North Carolina. He combines bat speed, strength and loft in his right-handed stroke, and he draws some parallels to Pete Alonso at the same stage of their careers. He has to hit because his only positional options are first base and DH.”
Joel Reuter of Bleacher Report: B+. “The Twins like high-level college performers, including recent early picks Trevor Larnach and Brent Rooker, and Sabato fits the mold. Nelson Cruz has to retire at some point, right?”
Dave Schoenfield of ESPN: “What do you do when you set a major league record for home runs? Why not draft more power. Sabato’s average exit velocity and launch angle numbers compare to Nelson Cruz’s, so it makes sense that Sabato might someday replace him as the Twins’ designated hitter. Eduardo Perez loves the way Sabato uses his feet and gets the barrel through the zone.”
Joe Tansey of Bleacher Report: Team grade – B-.
Keith Law of The Athletic ($): “Sabato could come up very quickly, but there doesn’t seem to be a ton of upside here.”
Matt Martell of SI.com: “(Sabato) projects to be a DH instead of an everyday fielder, but he can rake.”
Elizabeth Finny of Bleacher Report: A-. “The Minnesota Twins needed to add depth at first base, so adding power-hitter Aaron Sabato made sense. The draft-eligible sophomore had a .343 batting average his freshman year, and his strength and bat speed combine to give him a raw power that could help him become the designated hitter in Minnesota.”
Anderson Pickard of MLB Daily Dish: Sabato – “The Twins are all about power and that’s exactly what they’re getting from Sabato. He’s a mediocre defender with a decent glove but poor range and mobility. However, he makes up for that (and then some) with his impressive power bat and pop at the plate. One unique trait that Sabato boasts is his ability to post good contact and patience results despite being a power-heavy slugger.”; Round 2, Alerick Soularie – “Soularie is a very good hitter with poise at the plate, a high IQ when a pitch is on the way, and solid line-drive contact. He does have good power, too, as well as versatility in the field between the outfield and even some time in the infield. A bat-first player, Soularie joins slugger Aaron Sabato on the Twins’ draft list.”; Round 4, Marco Raya – “Raya has an advanced pitch ability for someone his age. He should have an immediate impact in the Twins’ system as he utilizes his proficiency on the mound. He was somewat underscouted so the lack of knowledge about him could be a minor concern, but ut’s not too big of an issue.”; Round 5, Kala’I Rosario – “Rosario has posted incredible results in the showcase circuit as well as with the wood bat. He is a strong and powerful 17-year-old with incredible thump from the right side of plate. He pulls the ball often and will need to improve his strikeout rate. Defensively, he will likely shift to corner outfield as he loses speed during his transition to the pros.”