Which Twins Players May Break Out in 2013?
The Minnesota Twins won only 66 games and lost 96 last season, and this year, expectations are low as the Twins are a team that has basically a new pitching rotation, and outfield.
The Twins start a brand new season at Target Field against the Detroit Tigers. The Twins aren’t the favorite to win the American League Central, and the Tigers are. The Twins are a team that can fly under the radar, and a here’s a few young players that could lead the Twins this season.
Aaron Hicks, CF
Aaron Hicks was named the Twins starting center fielder earlier this week, and his confidence is high after a excellent Spring Training. In the spring, Hicks hit .350/.397/.650 with four home runs, 16 RBIs, 16 runs, and three stolen bases. His spring highlight came when he blasted three home runs against the Philadelphia Phillies.
Vance Worley, RHP
Vance Worley was traded to Minnesota from Philadelphia for Ben Revere, and has the potential to be the Twins ace in their starting rotation. Worley is 0-1 with a 6.35 ERA and eight strikeouts in the spring, but the last few years in Philadelphia he has showed glimpses of a bright future. Worley’s best year was in 2011 when he went 11-3 with an 3.01 ERA and 119 strikeouts.
Glen Perkins, LHP
Glen Perkins used to be a starter for Twins, but now he is ready to take over the Twins closer role full-time. Last year, Perkins was 3-1 with a 2.56 ERA and 16 of 20 in saves. He struck out 78 batters in 70.1 innings pitched.
Kyle Gibson, RHP
Gibson is coming off Tommy John surgery, and will start the season in Rochester, but soon could find himself in the Twins rotation soon. Gibson is one of the Twins top pitching prospects.
Liam Hendriks, RHP
Hendriks struggled in his first year in a Twins uniform last year in their pitching rotation, but this year he is back, and wants to get redemption. Hendriks is 2-1 with a 4.15 ERA and 13 strikeouts this spring. Last year, he was 1-8 with a 5.59 ERA and 50 strikeouts in 85.1 innings pitched. Yesterday, however, Hendriks left a Spring Training game with a a hand injury.
Scott Diamond, LHP
Diamond had a fantastic rookie season last year for the Twins, and will start the season on the disabled list. However Diamond is ready to build off his rookie season, where he went 12-9 with a 3.54 ERA and 90 strikeouts. Diamond is scheduled to be back April 12, and last Saturday, he gave up three runs on five hits in three innings and two strikeouts in a spring game.
Trevor Plouffe, 3B
Plouffe has a year under his belt as the Twins starting third baseman and is hoping that he can hold onto the job. Plouffe is hoping to prove that last year wasn’t a fluke. So far this spring, he has hit .395 with no home runs, and three doubles. He’s had 15 hits, six RBIs, and five runs as well. Last year, Plouffe broke out for the Twins and hit .235 with 24 home runs, 99 hits, 56 runs, 55 RBIs in 119 games played.
The Twins are young, and to help their young players feel comfortable in the Big League, veterans Joe Mauer, Justin Morneau, and Josh Willingham will have to step up and be leaders in the clubhouse.