2021 Twins Minor League Player and Pitcher of the Year
MINNEAPOLIS/ST. PAUL, MN -- The Minnesota Twins announced today that infielder Jose Miranda has been named the 2021 Sherry Robertson Award winner as the Twins Minor League Player of the Year and right-handed pitcher Louie Varland has been named the 2021 Jim Rantz Award winner as the Twins Minor League Pitcher of the Year.
Miranda, 23, has split the season between Double-A Wichita and Triple-A St. Paul, combining to hit .342 (176-for-514) with 29 doubles, 29 home runs, 92 RBI and an .968 OPS in 122 games through September 27. The 6-foot-2, 210-pound infielder was named Twins minor league Player of the Week four times during the season (May 16, June 6, June 27 and July 4). He is currently ranked as the club’s eighth-best prospect per MLB.com.
The Vega Alta, Puerto Rico native was selected by the Twins in the Lottery Round B (73rd overall) of the 2016 First-Year Player Draft out of Leadership Christian Academy in Guaynabo, Puerto Rico. In 481 career games in the Twins minor league system through today, he has hit .281 (526-for-1870) with 97 doubles, five triples, 65 home runs, 292 RBI, 260 runs scored, 131 walks and a .782 OPS.
Varland, 23, split the 2021 season between Single-A Fort Myers and Single-A Cedar Rapids. The 6-foot-1, 205-pound pitcher went 10-4 with a 2.10 ERA (103.0 IP, 24 ER), 30 walks, 142 strikeouts, a 1.09 WHIP and a .214 opponent batting average (82-for-383), leading Twins minor league pitchers in strikeouts, wins and ERA (min. 45.0 innings pitched). He was named Low-A Southeast Pitcher of the Week while with Fort Myers on June 13 and later named Twins minor league Pitcher of the Week twice (July 25 and September 12) while pitching for the Kernels.
The St. Paul, Minnesota native was selected by the Twins in the 15th round of the 2019 First-Year Player Draft out of Concordia University (St. Paul) and has gone 10-5 with a 2.10 ERA (111.2 IP, 26 ER), 34 walks and 152 strikeouts in 23 games (19 starts) through parts of two seasons in the Twins minor league system. He is currently ranked as the club’s 29th-best prospect by MLB.com.
The Sherry Robertson Award, named in honor of the Twins’ first farm director, was established in 1970 to recognize the top Twins minor league performer each season. Since 2002, the award has recognized the Twins Minor League Player of the Year while an additional award has been created to recognize the Twins Minor League Pitcher of the Year. This award was named in honor of former Twins Minor League Director and Twins Hall of Famer Jim Rantz. Past winners of the Sherry Robertson Award include Butch Wynegar (1974), Kent Hrbek (1981), Gene Larkin (1986), Paul Sorrento (1989), Denny Neagle (1990), Marty Cordova (1992), LaTroy Hawkins (1993 and ’94), Todd Walker (1996), David Ortiz (1997), Michael Cuddyer (2001), Joe Mauer (2003), Brian Dozier (2011), Byron Buxton (2013), Max Kepler (2015), Mitch Garver (2017), Alex Kirilloff (2018) and Trevor Larnach (2019). Past winners of the Jim Rantz Award include Jesse Crain (2003), Scott Baker (2004), Francisco Liriano (2005), Matt Garza (2006), Kyle Gibson (2010), José Berríos (2014 and ’15), Lewis Thorpe (2018) and Randy Dobnak (2019).
Miranda and Varland, along with the other Twins 2021 award winners, will be recognized at the 17th Annual Diamond Awards later this winter.