Royce Lewis is Way Too Good for Triple-A
The entire Minnesota Twins fanbase held their collective breath last season when Royce Lewis laid rhything in pain on the centerfield warning track at Target Field. The official diagnosis wasn’t any better than the initial scare. Another torn ACL.
Welcome back to baseball, Royce Lewis.
But less than one year after experiencing the second ACL tear of his professional baseball career, Royce Lewis is back on the field and doing what he has done for much of his life. Dominate on the diamond.
In just the 5th game of his minor league rehab assignment on Friday, Lewis went 3-for-4 and hit two solo home runs for the St. Paul Saints. That means Royce has hit just as many Triple-A homers as he has played Triple-A games, raising his batting average to .500 and his OPS to 1.750.
Royce Lewis went 3-for-4 with two homers for Triple-A St. Paul.— Aaron Gleeman (@AaronGleeman) May 20, 2023
Lewis is now 8-for-18 (.444) with three homers and three steals in five rehab games.
Here's his second homer tonight: pic.twitter.com/vtRdh2RCMJ
That’s right. Royce Lewis has played in just THREE games at Triple-A, St. Paul and he has just as many homers as he has played games. And we’re talking about a guy who hasn’t played baseball in a year’s time. Rusty? Never heard of him.
Too much talent for Triple-A
Look, Royce Lewis is one of the most talented baseball players in the world. If he wasn’t, he wouldn’t have been the #1 overall pick in the 2017 draft. Guys like that are dripping with so much raw talent that they’re almost no-miss prospects.
Now, two knee surgeries and multiple career setbacks later, Lewis’ raw talent is evolving into untapped superstar potential right before our eyes. What’s becoming more and more clear, with every rehab at-bat, is that Royce Lewis is way too good for Triple-A competition.
We missed you, Royce🙏— Twins Player Development (@TwinsPlayerDev) May 17, 2023
In his first AAA game this season, Royce Lewis has unleashed a 422ft home run that left his bat at 108mph💣 pic.twitter.com/ENyHnmdwLN
You see this sort of thing happen in professional sports, especially in baseball and basketball. When NBA-caliber basketball players are stuck or sent down to the G-League, they put up monster numbers nearly every game.
The Alex Kirilloff path
If you want to stick to baseball and the Minnesota Twins, look no further than Royce Lewis’ teammate, Alex Kirilloff. Remember, he didn’t start the season with the big league clube, due to his nagging wrist injury. But as soon as he started his rehab assignment, it was clear the Twins weren’t going to be able to keep Kirilloff in the minor leagues for very long.
Why not? Because he was making fools out of every pitcher he faced. When he was finally called up, after 10 games in St. Paul, Kirilloff was hitting .316 with a 1.092 OPS with 12 hits, 3 home runs and 12 RBI.
AAA St. Paul Saints outfielder Alex Kirilloff hit his second home run of the day, leading the Saints to a victory over the Sioux Falls Canaries. Kirilloff, 25 pic.twitter.com/2CoXj0mkqD— AntonettePotts🥪 (@AntonetteP16292) May 7, 2023
After just three games with the Saints, it’s clear that Royce Lewis is way too good to be playing minor league baseball. Unfortunately for the rest of Triple-A, Lewis is not eligible to be added to the Twins active roster until the last day of May. Hopefully, he’ll be in a Twins uniform shortly after that. At least, that’s what Triple-A pitchers across the country are hoping.
Eric Strack | Minnesota Sports Fan