Minnesota Twins top prospect Royce Lewis will miss the entire 2021 season after suffering a torn ACL in a freak accident, the team said Wednesday.
Twins president of baseball operations Derek Falvey said that Lewis has a complete tear in his right ACL, according to MLB.com.
“A player like Royce has such raw, incredible athleticism, and the baseball-refined skills were coming,” Falvey said. “It’s disappointing for sure because this is lost development time for him, but we’ll just have to make sure when he comes back he gets as many of those reps as he can as creatively as we can. That will drive the next steps in his development.”
According to MLB.com, the Twins weren’t exactly sure when Lewis suffered the injury. Falvey said Lewis was feeling sore while doing drills during the offseason and the pain worsened when he slipped on a patch of ice in Texas during the major winter storms that passed through the state.
“He slipped [on some ice] and felt his knee go, felt that same soreness,” Falvey said, via the Star Tribune. “It’s just hard to know” if that slip did the damage. “The MRI revealed a full tear, but he wasn’t in extreme pain.”
The full extent of the injury was revealed when Lewis underwent an MRI when he arrived at spring training.
The shortstop is only 21 years old and he is expected to make a full recovery.
Minnesota selected Lewis with the No. 1 pick of the 2017 draft. He didn’t play in the minors last year because the coronavirus pandemic forced the cancelation of the minor-league season.
Between High-A Advanced and Double-A in 2019, Lewis hit .236 with 12 home runs in 127 games. He had a .952 fielding percentage.
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