One of the biggest headlines in 2018 for the Twins was Miguel Sano’s demotion all the way down to single A. At the time, and perhaps even now, there was a notion that this was a strong message to Sano that he needed extremely remedial work in order to build his standing back with the organization. Since the initial demotion, though, the front office has said that that wasn’t the case at all.
In fact, Sano was sent to Fort Myers, rather than Rochester, because the Twins’ primary concern was with his fitness, coming off of a leg surgery the year before, and doing so at an unseemly weight. Fort Myers has much better facilities for fitness and training than Rochester or Chattanooga, and perhaps even in Minneapolis, thanks to the collocation with the Twins’ spring training facility.
Sano was sent to Fort Myers because that’s where the Twins felt he had the best chance to get fit. In that regard, they were successful, at least according to the eye test. The Twins recently re-upped their deal with Fort Myers as a minor league affiliate, so one could justifiably wonder, with Sano’s success and the extended association, if Fort Myers might be a demotion location again in the future.
It’s likely that players rehabbing will spend time in Fort Myers before they try to play against better competition, but I find it difficult to believe that there are many players skilled enough to be in the Majors that also have the same physical fitness of Miguel Sano. If only someone had thought of this when Sidney Ponson was in town.