• Pickin' Berrios

    Most every hardcore Twins fan is well aware of the Puerto Rican 18-year-old we picked up in last June's draft (Jose Orlando Berrios! for the rest of you). After dominating both rookie levels in 2012, this kid is screaming fast-track potential. Where can we expect this guy to finish the 2013 season?



    J.O. is what they are gonna call him. And he should certainly get to pick his nickname after averaging 14.4 K's/9 innings as a minor-league-rookie.
    That is ridiculous, and 2013 will show if he can keep those numbers up as a starting pitcher. He pitched 30.2 innings with 49 K's in 2012, and opponents hit .140. Holy moly!

    This guy is only 6-foot-nothing, a-hundred-eighty-nothing (short and scrawny). But he generates tremendous force behind his pitches. Before the draft, the numbers and reports the Twins had on him were this: 90-93 fastball with 3/4 arm slot creating tail...78 on the slurve with hard break down and away from RHH...79 on the Change-up with heavy action in to a RHH. He was praised for his command of the off-speed stuff, especially the change-up.

    After checking out a few videos on youtube, I see that this kid really has an electric fastball. A low 90's fastball isn't all that impressive by itself. But J.O. has a very deliberate motion toward the plate and hides the ball extremely well, making that low 90's heat feel like mid 90's to the hitter. His breaking ball is "as advertised" and shall be an out pitch for the talented right-hander. The change-up looks like filth to me, and should prove to keep many pro-hitters from guessing on the fastball.

    So the real question now is this: Will the organization fast-track this kid in 2013, and allow him to move multiple levels? I am sure his performance will determine this, but the guy will only be 19. So, perhaps the organization will play it safe and limit his innings and appearances? Berrios has been described as physically mature beyond his age (whatever that means), so maybe he gets a heavier workload than someone else his age.



    I predict: Berrios shows how his hard working attitude can produce crazy good numbers. Reports from the end of last summer had him hitting 94-96 on the gun, so he's got serious MLB potential. He may start in Elizabethton, but I see him definitely playing A ball before the season ends. If it was up to me, I would start him in Cedar Rapids and play it by ear from there. He is oh-so-ready for the low-A level, and you know it.

    Please leave your opinion on Berrios below. Thanks!
    This article was originally published in blog: Pickin' Berrios started by mnfanforlife
    Comments 110 Comments
    1. mnfanforlife's Avatar
      mnfanforlife -
      Sho' 'Nuff Willihammer! Thank you for posting!!
    1. drjim's Avatar
      drjim -
      By being unafraid to draft short pitchers in high rounds the Twins once again prove they are at the cutting edge of statistical analysis!
    1. ashburyjohn's Avatar
      ashburyjohn -
      Quote Originally Posted by mnfanforlife View Post
      Yes, I admit its not fair to berrios or timmy. But they are quite similar in body-type and pitching "stuff"..beyond that they do not compare favorably since their paths to the bigs will be so different. berrios will probably not skip a single level on his way to MN, while Timmy was already seasoned when the Giants got him at #10 overall.
      JO is slightly taller and weighs more than Lincecum already, and he's not even reached his 19th birthday so he could fill out some more, maybe even grow another inch taller. And since their paths shape up to be so different, isn't there some other pitcher with similar body-type and stuff to use for the comp?

      Matt Moore is listed as 6'2" and 205 today, quite a lot smaller in stature than the Verlanders and Prices of the world - when he was signed as an 18-year-old I wonder if he profiled all that differently from JO today. Moore had a nice introduction in the Appalachian League as an 18-19 year old, and he turned out all right. I don't know what kinds of pitches Moore throws, versus Berrios, though - so maybe he's a poor comp.

      How about Gio Gonzalez? 6'0" and 200, also hot stuff in the Appy League when 18 - is/was his stuff comparable?
    1. kab21's Avatar
      kab21 -
      The Timmy comp is just silly. RH'ers with fastballs that tail in to righties? 2 secondary offerings that are different from Timmy? Couldn't you comp half of the RH pitching prospects to Timmy using this criteria?

      As a matter of fact this whole thread is silly. If Berrios is what you say he is then he should ranking in top 25 lists right now. Even you put him at #6 on your 2014 list that doesn't include Hicks, Arcia and Gibson.
    1. mnfanforlife's Avatar
      mnfanforlife -
      Quote Originally Posted by ashburyjohn View Post
      JO is slightly taller and weighs more than Lincecum already, and he's not even reached his 19th birthday so he could fill out some more, maybe even grow another inch taller. And since their paths shape up to be so different, isn't there some other pitcher with similar body-type and stuff to use for the comp?

      Matt Moore is listed as 6'2" and 205 today, quite a lot smaller in stature than the Verlanders and Prices of the world - when he was signed as an 18-year-old I wonder if he profiled all that differently from JO today. Moore had a nice introduction in the Appalachian League as an 18-19 year old, and he turned out all right. I don't know what kinds of pitches Moore throws, versus Berrios, though - so maybe he's a poor comp.

      How about Gio Gonzalez? 6'0" and 200, also hot stuff in the Appy League when 18 - is/was his stuff comparable?
      I am not really liking comparing Berrios to any lefties, or anyone that weighs 200 lbs or greater. Maybe you can compare stats, but I am talking more about what he looks like on the mound and his "stuff." I don't know. I admitted the Timmy comparison was not fair, or great for that matter.

      Let me see.....
    1. mnfanforlife's Avatar
      mnfanforlife -
      This video clip: JOSE ORLANDO BERRIOS Under Armour All-America 2011 - YouTube ....reminds me of the pitching motion of Zack greinke, but zack is more over-the-top than berrios.
    1. ashburyjohn's Avatar
      ashburyjohn -
      Quote Originally Posted by mnfanforlife View Post
      I am not really liking comparing Berrios to any lefties, or anyone that weighs 200 lbs or greater.
      If baseball-reference.com lists a guy at 200 now, I assume he weighed a good 10-20 pounds less as an 18-year old. May be a bad assumption. As for the lefty-righty thing, yeah, that was a bad oversight - obviously I was just spitballing some names and looking them up, and forgot to check handedness. Maybe Greinke is a decent comp in terms of size - hopefully not in his introverted makeup though.
    1. mnfanforlife's Avatar
      mnfanforlife -
      Quote Originally Posted by ashburyjohn View Post
      If baseball-reference.com lists a guy at 200 now, I assume he weighed a good 10-20 pounds less as an 18-year old. May be a bad assumption. As for the lefty-righty thing, yeah, that was a bad oversight - obviously I was just spitballing some names and looking them up, and forgot to check handedness. Maybe Greinke is a decent comp in terms of size - hopefully not in his introverted makeup though.
      That's for sure. We don't need a guy that can't handle the pressure of pitching in the majors. But Greinke has been All-Star worthy for quite some time now...If Berrios approaches the level of Zack, then he was steal at #32 overall.
    1. jimbo92107's Avatar
      jimbo92107 -
      Doesn't throw quite as hard as Greinke, but Berrios is going to be a major pitching star.

      JOSE ORLANDO BERRIOS Under Armour All-America 2011 - YouTube

      Look at his poise on the mound, the alertness, the command. I see some Greinke, but his delivery doesn't look very hard on his arm. Berrios just needs to throw a few thousand more pitches to hone his form, get better accuracy. With his athletic balance on the mound, it will definitely happen. He'll be picking the corners with that slider in the major leagues within three years.
    1. mnfanforlife's Avatar
      mnfanforlife -
      Quote Originally Posted by jimbo92107 View Post
      Doesn't throw quite as hard as Greinke, but Berrios is going to be a major pitching star.

      JOSE ORLANDO BERRIOS Under Armour All-America 2011 - YouTube

      Look at his poise on the mound, the alertness, the command. I see some Greinke, but his delivery doesn't look very hard on his arm. Berrios just needs to throw a few thousand more pitches to hone his form, get better accuracy. With his athletic balance on the mound, it will definitely happen. He'll be picking the corners with that slider in the major leagues within three years.
      Couldn't agree more! I like your optimistic energy, and enthusiasm
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