April 16, 2010

Top 50 Twins Prospects 2010: #2 Wilson Ramos

2010 Top 50 Twins Prospects | #2 | Wilson Ramos

Position | Catcher

Bats/Throws | Right/Right

Born | August 10, 1987 (Valencia, Venezuela)

School | U.E. Santa Ines

| 6'0''

| 220 lbs.

2009 Ranking | 4

(Photo courtesy of Kevin Pataky of MiLB.com)

Wilson Ramos was signed as a non-drafted free agent on July 7, 2004. He didn't make it to the states until 2006, but he certainly has made his presence felt since. Admittedly, I flirted with ranking Ramos as the top overall prospect.

In 2006, Ramos began the season in Extended Spring Training before joining the Gulf Coast League. With the Twins, Ramos hit .286/.339/.435 with 16 extra-base hits in 154 at-bats. In 2007, Ramos again found himself in Extended Spring Training but he eventually joined the Beloit Snappers in June with the struggles of Greg Yersich. He went on to hit .291/.345/.438 with 26 extra-base hits in 292 at-bats. After the season, Ramos ranked in as my 13th best prospect in the Twins system. In 2008, Ramos moved up to the Florida State League where he hit .288/.346/.434 with 38 extra-base hits with the Ft. Myers Miracle. In 2009, Ramos continued to move through the system, this time playing for the New Britain Rock Cats in the Eastern League. He broke his finger in May and after returning in June, he missed two months with a pulled hamstring. All together, Ramos hit .317/.339/.496 with 25 extra-base hits including seven home runs in 224 at-bats. After finding himself healthy, Ramos hit .332/.397/.582 and drove in 49 runs in the Venezuelan Winter League.

Ramos' offensive prowess is mostly what he is known for, but Ramos is also a stout defender behind the plate. Pitchers like the way he calls the game and his strong arm makes it hard for base runners to steal on him. But two things stand in the way for Ramos are his history of injuries and a guy by the name of Joe Mauer. Ramos has the potential to be one of the best offensive catchers in baseball, but THE best is already on the roster, so it doesn't seem likely that he'll play an extensive role with the Twins (at least not as a catcher). The Twins could consider using using him at DH, but that seems like it'd really be diminishing his value. Ramos needs to prove in 2010 that he can stay on the field, which may be all that is separating him from being the top prospect.

2009 Statistics
          Level      G     PA     AVG     OBP     SLG     XBH     HR   wRC+
          R (GCL)    5    500    .316    .316    .947       5      3    263
AA 54 500 .317 .341 .454 20 4 120

2010 Outlook
Ramos missed a lot of time in 2009 due to injury, but he showed enough during Winter Ball and in Spring Training to make the Twins feel comfortable enough with starting him in Triple-A.


Estimated Time of Arrival