Earning an Opening Day big league roster spot is a lofty goal for many prospects. It gets loftier if a prospect has spent months rehabilitating a strained elbow ligament.
Declaring his elbow healthy, Twins No. 2 prospect Miguel Sano said he wants to play in Minnesota at some point this season.
"My elbow feels pretty good right now," Sano told TwinCities.com on Friday while attending TwinsFest. "I'm throwing again. I threw a little bit in Florida, three or four days."
MLB.com's freshly minted No. 4 overall prospect also said the elbow checked out during a physical examination Friday. And while the team has not ruled out Tommy John surgery to repair the ulnar collateral ligament, the 20-year-old third baseman said emphatically he will not need the procedure.
"For me, no surgery," he said. "I'm sure."
Sano also told the (Minneapolis) Star-Tribune that he expects to hit 45-55 home runs in 2014, assuming he's healthy.
"I hit 45 this year. More games," he told the newspaper. "Maybe 55, you never know."
Sano, who also claimed he would draw 150 walks, has been hitting off a tee and said he hopes to be cleared to take batting practice when he returns to Florida next week, TwinCities.com reported. He's among the Twins' non-roster invitees to Spring Training, which opens on Feb. 21 in Fort Myers.
"I want to show them everything at Spring Training," Sano said. "I want to show I can compete."
The native of the Dominican Republic combined for 35 home runs and 103 RBIs last season at Class A Advanced Fort Myers and Double-A New Britain, hitting .280 in 123 games before he was shut down.