CHICAGO — Royce Lewis was the No. 1 overall pick in the 2017 draft. He was the Twins’ top prospect as he worked his way through the farm system and the promise of his talent was cause for excitement across the organization for years.
But when Lewis returned to the Twins in late May, after two anterior cruciate ligament surgeries in his right knee, there was really no way for the Twins to anticipate what he might look like. If there had been expectations, it’s safe to say he would have exceeded them by now.
“I had no idea what to expect. No one had any idea what to expect,” manager Rocco Baldelli said. “If anyone thinks or claims they did, they’re lying. It’s not true. He hadn’t played enough.”
In addition to two years being wiped out by injury, Lewis didn’t play in a game in 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, which forced the cancellation of the minor league season.