February 7, 2009

Top 50 Twins Prospects 2009: #11 Luke Hughes

2009 Top 50 Twins Prospects | #11 | Luke Hughes

Position | Second Base/Third Base

Bats/Throws | Right/Right

| August 2, 1984 (Perth, Australia)

| Hampton High School

| 5'11''

| 200 lbs.

2008 Ranking
| Not Ranked

Luke Hughes signed with the Twins as a non-drafted free agent back in 2002. He really broke out in 2008 with outstanding power and run production despite his sub six-foot frame. The biggest knacks against Hughes are that he is not great defensively at any position, which is why many believe he is most likely suited as a bench player. The Twins really like Hughes' potential at the plate which is why they sent him to Venezuela this winter to work on his defense at third base. He will most likely go into Spring Training with a chance to make the roster, but I think he'll have to display standout defense and continue to impress with his bat if he wants a chance to crack the Twins roster out of Spring Training. I don't personally see him as a third baseman in the majors, with Danny Valencia likely a year away from the majors as well, I think Hughes' future will most likely be at second base. Valencia is a much more sound defender at third whereas Hughes is more comfortable at second base. Regardless, I don't buy the "bench player" title Hughes has received and I think he'll land a starting role somewhere.

2008 Statistics
Level      G     PA     AVG     OBP     SLG     XBH     HR    RBI
AA        70    319    .319    .385    .551      33     15     40
AAA 29 118 .283 .325 .453 11 3 21

2009 Outlook

Hughes will likely be getting most of the starts at third base in Rochester and could be in Minnesota by mid-season if he gets off to a good start. Otherwise I expect him to spend most of the season in Rochester with a September call-up being likely.

(Best I could do)

Estimated Time of Arrival