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  • Let it Sano, Let it Sano, Let it Sano!

    This is a little bit risky. But I have to draw attention to this comparison I am about to make. When the Twins signed Miguel Sano as a 16-ish shortstop from the Dominican Republic back in 2009, he was regarded as the "jewel" of the International Signing Period that year.........



    Just one short year later, the Nationals drafted and signed a 17-year-old Bryce Harper. Sano is just a tick younger (about 7 months) than Harper. But both were highly-touted-blue-chipper types. Harper started his pro career in class A ball where he tore it up.
    They skipped him up to AA ball, bypassing A+ to finish his first season as a pro. The next season, in 2012 the organization started him in AAA without much statistic success, but quickly promoted him to the bigs where he held his own despite his underwhelming performance at AAA.

    Miguel Sano started his pro career one year before Harper in 2010 at the lowest level the Twins have stateside (GCL), despite his reputation as a true baller. He tore up the GCL as a 17-year old, then went bonkers at Elizabethton in 2011 with a .637 SLG%. So, while Harper was struggling through his promotion to AA, Sano was destroying short-season Rookie league.

    In 2012 Sano played an entire year in low-A ball and absolutely destroyed pitchers' ERA's often. He drove in 100 runs and squared-up 28 homers. His batting average does not matter after hearing the HR and RBI numbers. He was again unimpressive on defense, but showed the tools to be effective eventually. While Sano was bashing around in the Midwest League, Harper was playing for the NL All-Star squad.

    While Harper was hitting .243 in AAA in 2012, I would imagine that Harper's AAA coaches were saying things like, "I don't care what his stats are, this guy is a PLAYER!" "This guy is on another level." "This guy is ready to produce." Harper was most likely lining balls all over the place, diving and catching, throwing out sleepers, and hustling his tail off.

    Now I am not saying that Sano is as good as Bryce Harper, or that he plays as hard as Harper, etc. But I am categorizing Sano as an elite-blue-chipper that is expected to produce at an accelerated rate immediately. Not play his 3rd pro season in its entirety at low-A ball......!

    Can we please allow someone that produces at the rate of Sano or Rosario the opportunity to start their Major League professional career at an extremely young age? After all, this is a young man's game, and its not too late to let Sano move quickly in 2013 (meaning multiple level advancement!). Harper was able to contribute to his team winning the NL East, while Sano could only muster a Midwest League play-off run.

    To me, MLB experience at a very young age will only help the player develop in the long run. Certain players are special and should be started at a level that reflects their advanced skills. Not coddled at the lower levels for years while they put up dominating, productive numbers that could be helping a higher level succeed. And ultimately, special players should be rushed to Minnesota in a hurried fashion, if you wanna follow the Nationals way of dealing with Harper.

    Just to be clear: the Nationals allowed Bryce to use his talents for about 1.2 seasons in the minor leagues before succumbing to the fan base and bringing him up to the Show. Miguel Sano appears to be on the 6-year-plan. Well hey, at least he will hit a ton of minor league homers! And make people happy if he's the beer batter!
    This article was originally published in blog: Let it Sano, Let it Sano, Let it Sano! started by mnfanforlife
    Comments 79 Comments
    1. mnfanforlife's Avatar
      mnfanforlife -
      Yeah I agree it is important for even the most elite prospects to have plenty of seasoning in the minors. But, it would be nice to see some of our guys get pushed out of their comfort zone a bit and see if that helps them develop even faster. In no way do I think Sano was ready for AA ball last year. But I do think his offensive production warranted a look in Ft. Myers to finish the year. Along with Rosario, by the way
    1. jtrinaldi's Avatar
      jtrinaldi -
      Watching Sano for the full year this year, I can say that he is the Best Hitter to come through the MWL, since 2009 when Wil Myers was in Burlington, and Mike Trout was in Cedar Rapids. Both Trout and Myers(then a catcher) hit for average, compared to Sano who hit for Power. I have never seen a player that brought people to the ballpark in the MWL like Sano did. Fans knew who Sano was, and on the road, people actually came to the games just to see if he is as advertised. When I was in Lake County, and Fort Wayne in my Beloit gear, I had people coming up to me asking me if Sano was as good as they have been saying he is on the radio. Next years Midwest league class will be Correa/Addison Russell/Almora.
    1. mnfanforlife's Avatar
      mnfanforlife -
      Quote Originally Posted by SeanS7921 View Post
      While his average isn't a huge deal his swings and misses are a huge deal when talking about moving a guy to the majors. 144 times in low A doesn't cry out ready for the Majors. You didn't even bring up that the guy has no true position in the field and at this point will probably be a RF, DH or 1B guy. 3B is highly dubious. If he can't play 3rd it limits his upside. Byron Buxton is most likely the Twins top prospect and then Sano. We bring up Sano and waste his service time when he's not ready. He isn't close to the prospect Harper is. Not even close. Hopefully Sano will be ready for some big league ball by 2015.
      This is exactly why Sano would make such a great beer batter
    1. mnfanforlife's Avatar
      mnfanforlife -
      How many K's for Sano in Ft. Myers next year? Homers?
    1. Shane Wahl's Avatar
      Shane Wahl -
      Quote Originally Posted by mnfanforlife View Post
      How many K's for Sano in Ft. Myers next year? Homers?
      80 and 20. He should not be there the full year, in my view. In New Britain, the numbers will be better for him. He ought to be there by mid-July and probably learning first base.
    1. mnfanforlife's Avatar
      mnfanforlife -
      Quote Originally Posted by Shane Wahl View Post
      80 and 20. He should not be there the full year, in my view. In New Britain, the numbers will be better for him. He ought to be there by mid-July and probably learning first base.
      Wow! That's a fresh take on Sano....I just can't see him striking out less than 100 times in a full season. He might hit 30 HR's though. My money is on the Twins keeping Sano/Rosario at A+ all year. I do NOT see either Sano or Rosario moving from their respective postions (at least next year). They need to learn 3B and 2B, and the organization will give them a full year in Florida to do it.

      In 2014, they get their first serious audition at New Britain with a chance to be Sept call-ups
    1. Seth Stohs's Avatar
      Seth Stohs -
      Quote Originally Posted by mnfanforlife View Post
      Wow! That's a fresh take on Sano....I just can't see him striking out less than 100 times in a full season. He might hit 30 HR's though. My money is on the Twins keeping Sano/Rosario at A+ all year. I do NOT see either Sano or Rosario moving from their respective postions (at least next year). They need to learn 3B and 2B, and the organization will give them a full year in Florida to do it.

      In 2014, they get their first serious audition at New Britain with a chance to be Sept call-ups
      Yeah, there is no chance that Sano (assuming health) strikes out less than 100 times. I'd be shocked! I'm completely comfortable with both of them spending the full season in Ft. Myers.
    1. nicksaviking's Avatar
      nicksaviking -
      If these two continue to produce and improve, I would not be comfortable with them spending an entire year without a promotion. If sticking at 3B and 2B means they absolutely need a full year with the Ft. Myers instructors than I'd fully support an entire season in the FSL. If not, then they need to advance based on their productivity.
    1. FrodaddyG's Avatar
      FrodaddyG -
      Quote Originally Posted by Seth Stohs View Post
      Yeah, there is no chance that Sano (assuming health) strikes out less than 100 times. I'd be shocked! I'm completely comfortable with both of them spending the full season in Ft. Myers.
      I assume he said 80 because the poster thinks he should not be there the full year, and the question he was answering asked for strikeouts at Ft. Myers.
    1. mnfanforlife's Avatar
      mnfanforlife -
      Quote Originally Posted by FrodaddyG View Post
      I assume he said 80 because the poster thinks he should not be there the full year, and the question he was answering asked for strikeouts at Ft. Myers.
      Ahh. Thank you
    1. ThePuck's Avatar
      ThePuck -
      Quote Originally Posted by mnfanforlife View Post
      Delmon is a decent comparison for Sano, but Delmon was pushed through the minors quickly like Harper. Delmon played in AAA at age 19. Sano just finished low-A ball at 19. So that isnt a fair comparison either.
      Delmon signed a major league contract when he was drafted, they had no choice but to promote him. Tampa only had 3 option years.
    1. mnfanforlife's Avatar
      mnfanforlife -
      Quote Originally Posted by ThePuck View Post
      Delmon signed a major league contract when he was drafted, they had no choice but to promote him. Tampa only had 3 option years.
      that's insane! A high school outfielder gets a major league contract?? Well, Delmon did produce in the minors, and he was probably as ready as he could have been at the time of his promotion. Delmon has regressed so much as an athlete. I really hope Sano can stay in shape and play defense.

      My gosh...look at what Delmon did in the South Atlantic League as an 18-yr-old!
    1. ThePuck's Avatar
      ThePuck -
      Quote Originally Posted by mnfanforlife View Post
      that's insane! A high school outfielder gets a major league contract?? Well, Delmon did produce in the minors, and he was probably as ready as he could have been at the time of his promotion. Delmon has regressed so much as an athlete. I really hope Sano can stay in shape and play defense.

      My gosh...look at what Delmon did in the South Atlantic League as an 18-yr-old!
      Yup, drafted, signed, put right on the 40 man roster. He's not the first guy to sign one, but you're right it's rare.
    1. kab21's Avatar
      kab21 -
      Actually it was common for top picks to sign MLB contracts until the last CBA stopped them.
    1. mnfanforlife's Avatar
      mnfanforlife -
      Quote Originally Posted by kab21 View Post
      Actually it was common for top picks to sign MLB contracts until the last CBA stopped them.
      Imagine Buxton in Minnesota's CF as a 20-yr-old. Would not happen...but can you imagine the type of career numbers Buxton could amass with that many potential MLB seasons?
    1. ThePuck's Avatar
      ThePuck -
      Quote Originally Posted by kab21 View Post
      Actually it was common for top picks to sign MLB contracts until the last CBA stopped them.
      He didn't say top picks, he was just amazed that an high school player signed a major league contract after being drafted. Was it common for high schoolers to get major league contracts upon being drafted? Cause that's what he was amazed by.
    1. Badsmerf's Avatar
      Badsmerf -
      The only reason Sano spends an entire year in the FSL is to work on defense. The Twins have pushed prospects a little harder once they hit the FSL, so I wouldn't be surprised by a promotion mid-season.
    1. mnfanforlife's Avatar
      mnfanforlife -
      Quote Originally Posted by ThePuck View Post
      He didn't say top picks, he was just amazed that an high school player signed a major league contract after being drafted. Was it common for high schoolers to get major league contracts upon being drafted? Cause that's what he was amazed by.
      Exactly
    1. mnfanforlife's Avatar
      mnfanforlife -
      Quote Originally Posted by Badsmerf View Post
      The only reason Sano spends an entire year in the FSL is to work on defense. The Twins have pushed prospects a little harder once they hit the FSL, so I wouldn't be surprised by a promotion mid-season.
      I sincerely hope Sano AND Rosario get pushed up to AA by the end of 2013
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