His sore elbow kept him from doing his normal workout for six weeks, so Miguel Sano put on a few extra pounds. "I weighed myself today and I was 250," the 20-year-old Dominican slugger said. "When spring training starts, I'll weigh like 245, I think."

But if his body has gotten bigger this offseason, so have his expectations. Sano may have only 67 games of experience above Class A, but made it clear Saturday in Target Field that he intends to play here this season -- and right away.

"I have a fairly [large] amount of expectation to make the team" this spring, said the minor leagues' top power-hitting prospect. Speaking through interpreter Rob Plummer, his agent, Sano said he plans to "make sure he takes advantage of this opportunity the Twins are giving him, to try to make the team. He has to make sure he does everything as a professional, and not just as a guy. He feels like if he does those things, he has a great chance to make the team."

His expectations are higher than that, actually. When it was pointed out that his home run totals have jumped from 20 in 2011 to 28 in 2012, and to 35 last year, Sano didn't need an interpreter to explain what's next.

"I hit 45 this year. More games," he said. "Maybe 55, you never know."

Such is the exuberance of a power hitter who just received a clean bill of health. Sano was examined by Twins' doctors on Saturday, the fourth such exam he's undergone since he began feeling pain in his elbow shortly after the season ended, and no structural damage was found. The pain has ceased after his six-week break from training, too, so it appears he will avoid surgery.

His next project: Developing a better grasp of the strike zone, in hopes of becoming a more patient hitter. Sano seemed excited about the possibility after Joe Mauer offered to work with him in Fort Myers, Fla., next month. Considering he posted a .382 on-base percentage in 2012, drew 65 walks last year and 80 the year before, he's already displayed plenty of patience.