The Minnesota Twins announced today that slugging third baseman Miguel Sano will join the Pensacola Blue Wahoos on a Major League rehab assignment. The 2017 American League All-Star is nearing a return to the Major Leagues after spending April recovering from a laceration on his heel suffered in January.
The 25-year-old Sano was one of the highest ranked international prospects in the game’s history before signing with the Twins for $3.15 million, the second largest bonus ever given to a Dominican prospect at the time, as a 16-year-old in 2009. He quickly became one of the game’s top prospects, being ranked as high as #6 overall in baseball, before his 2015 Major League debut as a 22-year-old. He finished third in American League Rookie of the Year voting following a debut campaign during which he hit 18 home runs in just 80 games.
After hitting 25 home runs in 2016, Sano was selected as an American League All-Star in 2017, hitting .264 with 28 home runs and 77 runs batted in on the season. He was the runner-up to New York’s Aaron Judge in the 2017 Home Run Derby, hitting 32 home runs in the competition.
Limited by injuries during the 2018 season, Sano sustained the heel laceration that has delayed his 2019 season during a celebration following the Dominican Winter League championship, won by Sano’s Estrellas Orientales. He began his official rehab assignment on April 30 with the A+ Fort Myers Miracle and went 4-4 with a home run and three runs batted in the Miracle’s win over the Clearwater Threshers last night.