Although this week’s recognition certainly could go to New Britain pitcher Jay Rainville, the player who has been selected had four multi-hit games and at least one hit in each of the Fort Myers Miracle’s six games during a week when they won five of six. Juan Portes was drafted by the Twins in the fifteenth round of the 2004 draft, and as an 18 year old middle infielder, he had played a lot less baseball than a typical high or mid round selection.
Portes began his Twins career as a second baseman for the Gulf Coast League Twins, and later saw some time at third. Last year, he spent some time in the outfield, which is where he has played the majority of his games this year.
It has been his bat, however, that has had many talking about his future. He was selected the seventeenth best prospect in the Appalachian League by Baseball America following the 2005 season when he hit .287Ave/.353OBP with a league fourth-best 12 home runs. The previous year he led the Gulf Coast League with a .530/SLG. After hitting for a .269 Average for Ft. Myers in 2007, Juan returned to the Miracle for a second season this spring.
Portes was 11 for 24 (.458 Average) this week with 6 runs scored, 3 doubles, his third home run, 2 runs batted in, and a walk. For the season, Portes is hitting .294/.348/.406 in 180 at bats, with 32 runs scored, 11 doubles, 3 home runs, 20 runs batted in, and 4 stolen bases in 7 attempts.