Beloit Snappers 2007 Recap: The Hitters

Valencia batted over .300 in his time in the MWL.

The Beloit Snappers had a great 2007 season, coming within one win of winning the Midwest League Championship. It was an up-and-down season for the franchise, who earned a playoff berth by winning the first half title. After laboring through the second half, the Snappers made a miraculous run through the Midwest League playoffs, and were nearly league champs.

Some names really stand out from the 2007 season, including Jeff Manship, Brian Dinkelman, Danny Valencia, Steven Singleton, Johnny Woodard, Eli Tintor, and Tyler Robertson to name a few. Many people took on the role of staff ace throughout the season, and plenty of prospects put themselves into contention to make our annual TwinCitiesDugout.com Top-50 Prospects list. When all was said and done, it was a memorable season in Beloit.

In this piece, we look at those batters who had over 200 at-bats in Beloit this season.

Joe Benson
Benson began the season in a terrible slump, but came on to be the clutch bat in the Snappers playoff run. After starting the season in the low .200s, Benson finished the year at .255, which is far from where he started. In the playoffs, he was a clutch performer, and showed why he is a top prospect in the Twins organization. Overall, his eight triples were by far the most on the team, and he ended the year with 31 extra-base hits.

Daniel Berg
Berg struggled at the Low-A level this past season, as he played all over the field for the Snappers. He played some catcher, outfield, and first base, and batted only .214 for the season. He did show the ability to have some extra-base hit potential, smacking 14 doubles, but he just could not get it going for an extended period of time. One main problem he had was with the strikeouts, and he struck out nearly 100 times in only 323 at-bats. He is likely slated for Beloit once again in 2008.

Brian Dinkelman
Dinkelman went from a solid season with Elizabethton in 2006, to an even better season with Beloit in 2007. The young infielder made himself one of the top infield prospects in the Twins organization this past season, as his work in Beloit warranted him a promotion to High-A Fort Myers during the season. Dinkelman hit .283 for the Snappers, and earned himself the recognition of being the only Beloit player named as a starter to the mid-season Midwest League All-Star team. He also committed only five errors.

Garrett Olson
Olson hit a big home run in the playoffs for Beloit, but did not do much else during the season. This was a bit of a surprise due to the fact that he was one of the better hitters in Elizabethton last season. He has all the tools to be a good hitter for the Twins organization, but never really got himself going in 2007. When he did hit, he was a run producer, driving in 50 runs this season, while blasting 20 doubles.

Yancarlos Ortiz
Ortiz was the Snappers starting shortstop for most of the season, though he struggled with the glove and the bat this season. This fact I know is true, it seems that the Snappers have had a good shortstop that played poorly in Beloit. Ortiz is a much better player than his statistics showed, and if he can get off to a hot start next year, he should be in Fort Myers at some point.

Chris Parmelee
I know a lot of people are worried about Parmelee's statistics this season, but do not be alarmed. He is still very young, and comes with playing with the pressure of being a first round draft choice. He did show his trademark power in 2007, leading the Snappers in home runs, and another season in Beloit could be the best thing for him. His 70 runs batted in were the most on the team, and he had 43 extra-base hits in total. He is still by far one of the better prospects in the Twins organization, and should be fine.

Wilson Ramos
Ramos had a fantastic year for the Snappers in 2007, and has put himself in the running to be one of the top catching prospects in the Twins organization. He was amongst the team leaders with a .291 batting average, and played solid baseball behind the plate. He committed only two errors behind the dish, and hit a surprising eight home runs during the season. If he continues to grow as a hitter, he could be a guy who hits close to .300 for most of his career in the minor leagues.

Danny Santiesteban
Danny had his moments during the 2007 season, but did not have the kind of year that most of us were expecting. He showed flashes of brilliance sometimes, barreling over a catcher, and blasting eight home runs, but never really got himself on track for an extended period of time. That was of course until the end of the season, as he was the most valuable player on the Snappers roster in the playoffs. He ended the regular season on a hot streak, and went on to pick up a couple of multi-hit games in the playoffs.

Steven Singleton
Singleton was another infield prospect that put himself on the map in 2007. With the Twins short on infield depth in the minor leagues, Singleton had a breakout season, batting .271 in a lineup that struggled for most of the season. He was one of only two prospects with over 100 hits on the year, and struck out only 47 times in over 370 at-bats. He has a great batting eye, uses the whole field, and if he can cut down on his errors, will be very solid in years to come.

Eli Tintor
Tintor told TwinCitiesDugout.com that he is not afraid of any pitcher, and he approaches every pitcher with confidence. That showed in 2007, as he had a stellar season at the plate for the Snappers. He batted .286 in over 200 at-bats, and 20 of his 58 hits went for extra-bases. He has tremendous gap power, and is a guy who will likely be in Fort Myers in 2008. If he continues to hit, the Twins will find a place for him in the lineup.

Danny Valencia
During his time with the Beloit Snappers, Valencia was two things: the top hitter on the Snappers roster, and one of the top hitters in the Midwest League. He was the only Snappers to bat over .300 during the 2007 season, and established himself as a top position player prospect in the Twins organization. A Midwest League mid-season All-Star, Valencia hit 11 home runs in only 66 games for the team, and racked up 73 hits, better than a hit per game. He slugged at a .500 clip, and it was to no-one's surprise when he was promoted to High-A Fort Myers.

Johnny Woodard
The Twins expected a big 2007 season from Woodard, and he delivered, earning a promotion to High-A Fort Myers due to his power bat. He smacked ten home runs in only 66 games, and slugged at a .478 clip. He came up with timely hits, hit moonshot home runs, and 21 of his 56 hits went for extra-bases. He is not a legitimate power bat in the Twins organization.

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