In 2017 the Minnesota Twins would have been the best story in baseball if they had not been overshadowed by the brilliant run by the world champion Houston Astros. The Twins made a huge step forward finishing second in the Central, finding themselves in the American League Wild Card game. Minnesota fell short against the powerhouse Yankees but the statement was made, they have arrived on the scene and are ready to make the next step. The baseball world has begun to see the Twins but they have yet to notice their developing star Eddie Rosario.
Rosario burst onto the scene in 2015 for the Twins hitting 13HR, stealing 11 bases and hitting an astounding 15 triples. Rosario finished 6th in the rookie of the year voting. Rosario struggled to stay healthy in 2016 playing just 92 games. Without their young star the Twins suffered a tough season finishing just 59- 103, 35.5GB. A healthy Rosario took the field in 2017 and began his accent to a leadership role on a young Twins roster looking for a star. Rosario’s stats spoke for themselves, being placed in the middle of the Twins order Rosario blasted 27HR. Rosario also saw a huge progression in his advanced analytics. 2017 Stats (Increases from 2016) OBP +33 – SLG +86 – OPS +120 – XWOBA +59. The impact of having Rosario created a boast to the team as they finished 85-77 a ridiculous +26 in there win total. While there are many different reasons for the increase in wins for the Twins it cannot be ignored that Rosario’s presence was huge for this team.
Rosario has continued his development in 2018 continuing to be a force. The Twins struggled out of the gate mainly due to pitching issues. But as we inch closer to the All Star break the twins currently sit 4.5 games back from the Central leading Indians.Eddie Rosario has been the reason why this team has been able to stay afloat in the division. Over his last 15 games he has a Ruthian stat line .379BA 7HR 13RBI. Eddie Rosario came into the league as a guy with a little pop but a lot of raw skills. He used his speed and defensive ability to get into the lineup. There has been a regression in his speed game, but I believe that is due to the fact that the Twins needed a guy that can hit for power. Players like Byron Buxton can provide speed, Joe Mauer can provide more OBP. Rosario has changed his game to address the needs of his team. He has found more value swinging for extra base hits and driving in runs.
Right now Eddie Rosario’s numbers should place him right in the middle of the MVP discussions. His .323BA (5th), 16HR (10th), 46RBI (6th) put him in the same class as players like Mike Trout and Mookie Betts but he is still not looked at in the same light as these stars. Rosario currently ranks 14th in AL All-Star voting behind players like Aaron Hicks, Brett Gardner, Nick Castellanos and Michael Brantley. While these players may be deserving they are not near the level of Eddie Rosario. I live in realistic world, players in bigger markets are always going to be put in front of a player that plays in the midwest. Rosario sits in a market that doesn’t receive the same level of coverage. The baseball world has to open their eyes and see what is happening up in Minnesota. The best way to make that happen is to win. The Joe Mauer and Justin Morneau Minnesota Twins teams of the early 2000’s forced the sports world to pay attention. If the Twins can get more consistency from their pitching and secondary players they can turn around what his been a disappointing season.
Eddie Rosario will most likely make the All- Star game, he may even find himself in the talks for MVP (Not Realistic to win). What is certain though is that he is becoming a player that the league cannot ignore. He hits both righties and lefties, he hits for power, he hits for average, he has speed and he is only 26 years old! It is time to pay attention to this man and watch as he continues to be one of the best players in Major League Baseball.