Twins Roster Prediction

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    Spring Training begins Friday for the Twins when pitchers and catchers report for their first workout so I’ll be doing a 26-man Opening Day roster prediction for the 2021 season.


    1. C – Mitch Garver
    2. C – Ryan Jeffers
    3. 1B – Miguel Sano
    4. 2B – Jorge Polanco
    5. SS – Andrelton Simmons
    6. 3B – Josh Donaldson
    7. UT – Luis Arraez
    8. UT – Travis Blankenhorn

    Luis Arraez is entering the 2021 season with a new role for the Twins. He will serve as a utility man who can play second base, some shortstop, third base, and even some left field. There’s not much debate on which infielders will be on the Opening Day roster. There are a few other possible options for the last bench spot, like Willians Astudillo, Nick Gordon, and J.T. Riddle, but I think it will be Blankenhorn. Travis Blankenhorn was in the MLB for one game and made his debut last season before being optioned to the alternate training site. I think he will serve a larger role for the Twins this season. He can play second base, third base, and corner outfield.


    1. OF – Jake Cave
    2. CF – Byron Buxton
    3. RF – Max Kepler
    4. OF – Brent Rooker
    5. DH – Nelson Cruz

    I doubt that Alex Kirilloff will start the season with the Twins. He is MLB-ready but the Twins will likely keep him in Triple-A for a few weeks to get another year of service time. The service time manipulation system sucks but teams always take advantage of it. The Twins will be fine with Jake Cave or Luis Arraez in the left field for around three weeks until Kirilloff can come up so he has an extra year of service time. Brent Rooker was called up last season and was great in 21 plate appearances before getting hit by a pitch that fractured his forearm. He is expected to be ready for spring training and I could definitely see him having a big role off the bench. Buxton, Kepler, and Cruz are obvious picks to start at their respective positions.


    1. Kenta Maeda
    2. Jose Berrios
    3. Michael Pineda
    4. J.A. Happ
    5. Matt Shoemaker

    The first four starters are pretty much locks. There will be a battle for fifth starter in spring training between Matt Shoemaker and Randy Dobnak. Lewis Thorpe and Devin Smeltzer could be candidates as well but seem less likely. I think Matt Shoemaker will win this battle and I also think he’s a better option. He has much more experience and has had success when healthy. Unfortunately, he hasn’t pitched a full season since 2016.


    1. Tyler Duffey
    2. Taylor Rogers
    3. Alex Colomé
    4. Jorge Alcala
    5. Cody Stashak
    6. Hansel Robles
    7. Caleb Thielbar
    8. Randy Dobnak

    The bullpen is set in stone for the most part. It all comes down to the last reliever (no particular order for relievers), which I think will be Randy Dobnak because he didn’t get the 5th starter role. Dobnak has shown he can be very effective for a few innings and usually starts to fall off farther into the start. He can also serve as a long reliever or spot starter. Alcala and Stashak are primed for bigger roles in 2021. Alcala is coming off of a great season and Stashak has been very solid since his debut in 2019.

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