It’s been a long road that included detours — and stop signs — along the way, but Deibinson Romero is finally at Class AAA Rochester.
Romero spent most of this season in the Dominican Republic, waiting to receive a visa to travel to the United States. His complicated case, in which his birth certificate was destroyed in a fire, forced him to miss all of major league spring training. The third baseman reported to extended spring training last month and then hit .355 in eight games at Class AA New Britain. He debuted at Rochester on Thursday, going 0-for-4 with a strikeout.
“He kind of played his way into shape at New Britain,” said Brad Steil, Twins director of minor leagues.
Romero, 26, always has looked the part and has shown flashes of being a very good player. He first opened eyes at rookie league Elizabethton in 2007, when he went 4-for-5 with a grand slam, two three-run homers and 10 RBI in one game.
But he’s failed to display the desired consistency. At times, he hasn’t seemed confident. He also suffered a broken leg in 2008 at Class A Beloit that affected him the next season.
“It’s just being more consistent at the plate, taking better at-bats,” Steil said, “and consistency on defense as well.”
Steil said repeating at New Britain last season allowed Romero to get comfortable and show his talent. They hope he can get comfortable quickly at Rochester.
Second baseman Eddie Rosario, one of the Twins’ top hitting prospects, was benched for a couple of games at Class A Fort Myers this week but was expected to return to the starting lineup Friday.
Steil would not specify what Rosario did to earn the discipline but hinted it had to do with his approach to the game.
“We have a certain way we want to play, and that requires attention to detail,” Steil said. “It doesn’t matter who it is. A player has to play the game the right way.”
Williams raises game
Byron Buxton, Adam Brett Walker II, Jorge Polanco, Jose Berrios and Tyler Duffey have drawn a lot of attention at Class A Cedar Rapids, but the Twins also have been impressed with outfielder JD Williams.
The 10th-round pick in 2010 entered the organization as an athlete who also played baseball but has worked hard to become a baseball player. He’s batting .262 but is sixth in the Midwest League with a .416 on-base percentage and eighth with a .914 on-base-plus-slugging percentage.
Rochester righthander Anthony Slama (back) has been activated from the disabled list. … Righthander D.J. Baxendale’s scoreless-inning streak is at 28 for Class A Fort Myers. … Outfielder Clete Thomas (quad) also has returned to the Rochester lineup.