The Potential Tools: 55 run, 50 hit, 50 glove, 50 arm
Strengths: Above-average athlete; average bat speed from both sides of the plate; advanced feel for hitting; feel for contact and barreling velocity; will use all fields; linear swing path with quick wrists; line drive oriented approach; makes consistent hard contact; above-average reactions and instincts; soft hands and above-average range due to quick first step; smooth, quick transfers from glove to hand; arm is average; above-average run.
Weaknesses: Lacks impact tools; mental and physical mistakes still imminent; power is well below average; does not read pitchers well; above-average run but won’t be a stolen base threat; move to second base could be possible; will swing and miss up in the zone; low ceiling.
Role Ceiling: 50; major league regular shortstop.
Risk: Low; major league ready; upper-minors experience.
Summary: Polanco might be the most major league-ready prospect the Twins have now that Byron Buxton has graduated to the parent club. He has solid instincts and above-average range at shortstop giving many the opinion he could stick there for the foreseeable future. He has an average arm and above-average run but he does not read pitchers well, and his run will never be a factor on the bases. At the plate, he has a major league approach, and advanced feel for making hard contact. He has a line drive-oriented approach but since adding some weight, there is more raw power there than some suggest. Polanco should factor into the Twins plans this year and could be their shortstop of the future if they believe he can play there on a consistent basis. If not, he would make a great super-utility type player.