H/W: 6-2 211 lb. B/T: R/R DOB: 3/5/88
The Twins' 2006 2nd round pick had his season cut short in June after suffering a stress fracture in his back. Prior to the injury, Benson batted .248 with 4 HR 27 RBI and 17 SB in 69 games. When healthy, this Joliet native is hands-down the best athlete in the Minnesota Twins' organization with an athletic and muscular frame that should develop plus power and top-notch speed. Defensively, Benson has the tools to be an elite CF and the arm strength to play RF. He is a gritty competitor who was a top prep running back recruited by Purdue and other universities. The biggest questions remain with his lack of offensive polish. Benson displayed poor plate discipline (24 BB/72 K) and a lack of basestealing savvy (11 times caught stealing). Additionally, the looming spectre of a major back injury does present the risk of becoming a chronic problem that could continue to hamper his development. All told, Benson is a young and intriguing athlete who has several questions to answer this upcoming season.
2009 Projection: Early reports show that Benson will be healthy and ready to go for 2009. The Twins will likely send him back to Low-A Beloit and if early returns are good, he should move to High-A Fort Myers at some point in the season. Pay close attention to his health status this year as well as his progress in both his plate and baserunning discipline. If he can hone these skills, Joe Benson could become the MInnesota Twins' version of Grady Sizemore within the next few seasons.
Key Joe Benson Baseball Cards
- 2007 Bowman Sterling Auto
- 2007 Bowman Heritage Auto
- 2008 Bowman Chrome Prospects