Draft Reviews: Minnesota Twins

2008 Draft Slot: 14th overall
Top Pick: Aaron Hicks, OF, California high school
Best Pick: Aaron Hicks
Keep an Eye On: Tyler Ladendorf, SS, Texas junior college (second round)
Notes: Tyler Ladendorf was drafted with the reputation of being an offensive-minded player who might not stick at shortstop. The 21 year old, though, struggled in his first taste of pro ball and is currently working in extended spring training. He’s someone to keep an eye on when short-season ball begins in June. Aaron Hicks surprised just about everyone when he hit .318 last season after signing, because he was supposed to be more raw offensively. The 28 walks in 178 at-bats (13.9 BB%) were also a nice bonus.

2007 Draft Slot: 28th overall
Top Pick: Ben Revere, OF, Kentucky high school
Best Pick: Ben Revere
Worst Pick: Danny Rams, C/1B, Florida high school
Notes: The 71 strikeouts in 149 at-bats last season in his second year in rookie ball do not bode well for Danny Rams’ future. Ben Revere was yet another smart first-round pick by the Twins… He has shown a lot more polish than expected and the consistent ability to hit .300 has been a surprise. At 5’9” Revere is not going to hit for power so he needs to keep playing ‘small ball.’ Puerto Rican outfielder Angel Morales is another toolsy pick with massive power potential but huge strikeout totals.

2006 Draft Slot: 20th overall
Top Pick: Chris Parmalee, OF/1B, California high school
Best Pick: Danny Valencia, 3B, University of Miami (19th round)
Worst Pick: Garrett Olson, 3B, Franklin Pierce College (Fourth round)
Notes: This was the last of a string of disappointing first-round draft picks (three out of four years from 2003-06, minus Matt Garza in ’05) by the Twins. Chris Parmalee has struggled to hit more than .240 in the past three seasons. He’s only 21, though, so he has time to improve. Danny Valencia, whose contract demands caused him to slip a bit in the draft, has exceeded expectations with a .303 pro average.

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2009 Draft Slot: 22nd overall
Draft Preference (2006-08): High school athletes, college pitchers
MLB Club Need: Shortstop, Second base, Third base
Organizational Need: First base, Second base, Shortstop
Organizational Strength: Right-handed pitchers, Outfield
Notes: If there is one thing we can say for certain, it’s that the Twins organization loves to draft raw, toolsy, prep players. There is no reason to expect this to change. The club is also very smart when it comes to drafting ‘second-tier’ college pitchers who end up having a fair bit of success in pro ball. The Twins get a supplemental first round pick after losing reliever Dennys Reyes to free agency.

Marc Hulet has been writing at FanGraphs since 2008. His work focuses on prospects and fantasy. Follow him on Twitter @marchulet.

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