Updated: June 12th, 2013 11:52pm
Notebook: Twins in process of reaching deals with latest draft class

Notebook: Twins in process of reaching deals with latest draft class

by Brandon Warne
1500ESPN.com
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MINNEAPOLIS -- Despite rumors to the contrary, the Minnesota Twins do not yet have finalized agreements with any of their 2013 draft picks.

Jim Callis of Baseball America reported Monday the Twins and ninth-round catcher Mitchell Garver had come to terms on a deal with a $40k bonus, but the team insists nothing is finalized with any draftees yet.

That bonus would be less than one-third of what the slot allotment is for the 260th pick, but as a senior out of the University of New Mexico, Garver doesn't have as much leverage as a high school senior or a collegiate underclassman.

It also frees up the Twins to try to sway high school left-hander Stephen Gonsalves or catcher Brian Navaretto from going to college, potentially with above-slot offers.

As a part of the signing process, the Twins will have their draft picks come to Minneapolis or Fort Myers to take a physical. Thirteenth-round pitcher Brandon Peterson, a Wichita State product who hails from Savage, Minn, was given a tour of the team's Target Field facilities prior to the Twins 4-3 victory against the Phillies on Wednesday.

Ramirez on the mend

Team director of baseball research Jack Goin noted that outfielder Wilkin Ramirez, who has been sidelined since May 25 with a concussion, has continued to progress with his baseball activities, including batting practice and various cardio drills.

Goin added that Ramirez will have to go on a rehab stint once he's finally ready to get back on the field.

No decision has been made yet in regards to whether Ramirez will head to Single-A Fort Myers or Triple-A Rochester for his rehab assignment.

The Twins' extended spring training program is no longer an option for rehabbing players as it wrapped up shortly before last week's draft. The Twins will start mini camps in the next few weeks.

Plouffe begins rehab assignment

The Rochester Red Wings were off Wednesday, but the hope is to get Trevor Plouffe out on the field for a full nine innings on Thursday when the club opens a four game home series with the Gwinnett Braves.

Plouffe played six innings in the Wings' 9-5 loss to the Toledo Mud Hens on Tuesday, and logged time at third base for his first on-field defensive action since returning from a calf injury.

Goin said the Twins haven't put a strict timetable on Plouffe.

"When he shows signs of being ready to go, we'll go ahead and bring him back," Goin noted. "But if it takes all 20 (games allotted), it takes all 20."

Morales finally moving up

Along with Eddie Rosario and Miguel Sano, outfielder Angel Morales also received a promotion to Double-A New Britain.

Morales, who spent portions of the last three seasons at Single-A Fort Myers, was a third-round pick of the Twins back in 2007. While he has been in the Twins' system for seven years, he is still only 23-years-old.

"He's maturing as a player," Goin said. "He's always been a raw, toolsy-type player. He's now putting things together. Some guys click, and with some it just takes a bit longer than others."

It would be hard to argue Morales didn't deserve the promotion. He managed to put up impressive offensive numbers in the shadow of Sano and Rosario. Morales has hit .297/.364/.525, resulting in a .228 isolated power mark (slugging percentage - batting average) that is his best since 2008.

The Twins can't afford to be too patient with Morales going forward, however. He has to be added to the 40-man roster after the 2013 season, or else he will become a minor league free agent.

In other words, this stint at Double-A will be pivotal for the young Puerto Rican.

Kepler remains sidelined

Minor league outfielder Max Kepler, who signed with the Twins in 2009, has yet to seen playing time this season, sidelined with lingering inflammation in his elbow.

While there is no structural damage, Kepler has not felt up to testing the elbow in live-game action. Once Kepler is deemed healthy and ready, the organization will decide whether to send him to Elizabethton (rookie-level) or Cedar Rapids (Single-A).

Kepler has played the last two seasons at Elizabethton, with 2012 being a year of marked improvement as the German import improved his on-base percentage by over 200 point (.297/.387/.539). Baseball Prospectus ranked Kepler as the Twins' No. 8 prospect prior to this season.

Notes

• Reliever Ryan Pressly was sent home about three hours prior to game-time with the Phillies due to illness.

"Arm-wise, he feels good," manager Ron Gardenhire said. "But his arm isn't going to help us today. He came in, and the doctors saw him and send him back to the house."

• Outfielder Darin Mastroianni is still in a walking boot in the wake of foot surgery he underwent in mid-May. But Mastroianni's rehab remains on schedule for a potential return in late July.

"(The doctors) are happy with his progress," Goin said. "He's coming along well. It's going to be a ways out, but he's on schedule. There are no concerns at all."

Brandon Warne covers the Minnesota Twins for 1500ESPN.com. He has also contributed as a baseball analyst for Fangraphs.com and BaseballProspectus.com
Email Brandon | @Brandon_Warne
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