I know, I know – “Don’t get ahead of yourself” – but it’s hard when a kid like Miguel Sano proves, every night, that he is a natural at the plate.
The kid doesn’t even have 100 at-bats on the back of his bubble gum card, yet, but he is turning many heads.I’ve watched almost all of his Major League at-bats, and I get more impressed every time I watch him. He commands the plate. He has a great eye, and tremendous strength. I watched him take the Yankees’ Michael Pineda to straightaway center field after working the count to 3-2 without taking a swing. The one time he did swing, he sent the ball 412-feet and he didn’t even get his arms extended.
Sure, he strikes out a lot, but he doesn’t swing at bad pitches most of the time. A lot of his strikeouts have come swinging at high fastballs.
While his average has dipped over the last few weeks, we have to remember that he has registered only 52 official at-bats, has coaxed 12 walks, and is only 22 years of age.
He has hit three home runs and has 11 runs batted in. His OPS is .862, and he will only get better. All a manager can ask for is that a hitter works the count. Not only does Sano do that, but he also swings at good pitches and has power to all fields.
For being relatively new to the Major League scene, many pitchers do not attack Sano like they did with Byron Buxton. Instead, they nibble around the plate. I’ve seen David Price go after Sano, but that’s because Price has no worries because he is one of the best pitchers in recent memory. One thing that is great about Sano is that he is not intimidated. Sure, he will lose some battles, but he is also going to win some battles. I have a feeling that when his career is said and done, he will have won more battles than lost.
If I am in the front office of the Minnesota Twins, I’m seriously asking myself “When is the right time to sign him to a new contract?” I believe that he will be worth every single penny of the $300 million that Miami gave Giancarlo Stanton.
Sano will be that good.
It makes sense to give him the money now, or soon, because almost everyone in or around baseball thinks the kid has a good chance of becoming something very special. I’m not saying he deserves $300 million at this moment, but it would make more sense to give him the money sooner than later.
How has that Joe Mauer contract turned out?
I’m not saying he will win batting titles, MVP awards, or be the greatest baseball player of all time, but he will be THE reason a team – hopefully Minnesota – wins a World Series. He might accomplish the former mentioned things, too.
That’s how special I think he will become.