I've been intrigued by Max Kepler ever since the Twins signed him almost four years ago as a 16 year old out of Germany. He has raw tools that make the scouts rave and a very unique background as the son of two professional ballet dancers. According to the Washington Post, he was considered possibly the best European prospect ever when he was signed in 2009.
With that, here is some key info:
Name: Maximilian Kepler
Signed: July 2009 (International - Germany)
Weight: 180 on Baseball Reference, 220 according to Ashley Marshall's article this past January
Kepler should be spending this year with the Cedar Rapids Kernels, but is currently in extended spring training rehabbing an elbow injury. According to Mister-Baseball.com, he will be joining the Kernals around the end of April.
There's been a lot of great articles written about Kepler, here are links to a few:
Articles from 2009:
- Wall Street Journal article by John Miller - "Baryshnikov in Baseball Cleats"
- Washington Post article by Cameron Smith - "The Top European Prospect Ever"
- MLB.com article by Kelly Theiser - "Twins' Kepler-Rozycki is in his element"
Article from 2012:
- heinnews article by David Hein (Q&A session) - "One-on-One: Minnesota Twins’ German outfielder Max Kepler"
Articles from 2013:
- Twins Daily article by Nick Nelson - "TD Top Prospects: #10 Max Kepler"
- Twins Daily article by Cody Christie (inlcudes links to writeups by Baseball America, Baseball Prospectus, and Keith Law) - "How Max Kepler can help conquer Europe"
- Pioneer Press article by Tom Powers - "Minnesota Twins' German prospect considered wunderbar"
- Mlb.com article by Ashley Marshall - "Passport Prospects: Max Kepler"
Over the next couple of weeks, I plan on posting some stats, video, and my own analysis of his breakout 2012 season.