Trevor Plouffe hit another home run tonight. But so did Jim Thome, so Plouffe was unable to close the gap at all (607 to 22). Thome’s damage was also a three-run shot, while Plouffe’s was solo. The rest of the offense was pretty stagnant, and failed to plate any more runs (while also failing to win their fifth straight series).
It’s been an interesting past few weeks for the no-longer-shaggy Trevor Plouffe. After Luke Hughes was DFA’d, many wondered how closely Plouffe would follow. Plouffe now has a 2012 OPS of .841, despite batting .232 (which is about 100 points higher than it was when this hot-streak began). Suffice it so say, not DFAing Plouffe was a great call and it appears that Plouffe will be the everyday third baseman for the foreseeable future.
Let’s check on the minor leagues on this Thursday night:
ROCHESTER 8, LOUISVILLE 6
The Red Wings had an offensive outburst tonight, scoring eight runs on thirteen hits.
Danny Valencia (two doubles) and Matt Carson paced the offense with three hits each. Valencia had three RBI and walked twice, reaching base in all five plate appearances (which would lead to being named “hitter of the day”… most days). Carson added two RBI as did Clete Thomas, who hit his 3rd
AAA home run of the year.
The pitching staff just fared well enough to give their team a chance to win, and it took all of their offense to do so.
Luke French had a rough go of it. He only made it 3 1/3 innings and he only allowed four hits. French’s problem was his control, as he walked four and threw only 45 of 76 pitches for strikes. He struck out three.
Kyle Waldrop replaced French and did what Kyle Waldrop does: get groundball outs, including one double play. He allowed two hits.
Deolis Guerra allowed a two-run home run, but struck out two in his two innings of work. Casey Fien picked up the win for his two innings of work, not allowing any runs, but walking two and allowing two hits, while striking out one.
NEW BRITAIN 2, AKRON 3 (12 innings)
It was a tough 12-inning loss for the Rockcats tonight. Despite collecting fourteen hits, they were only able to score two runs.
The story of the game was Nate Hanson, who went 5-for-6 and was a home run short of the cycle. I would consider it somewhat amazing that he only scored once and didn’t drive in any runs. Rene Tosoni, Deibinson Romero and Matt Rizzotti all had two hits.
Brett Jacobson had his longest outing as a starter this year, going 5 1/3. He allowed three hits and three walks. He struck out six and allowed two runs. He left two runners on, which Bobby Lanigan stranded. Lanigan allowed two hits, but didn’t allow any runs in 2 2/3 innings and struck out two.
Bruce Pugh, who has always had an issue with control, struck out three in two innings, but also walked two.
Luis Perdomo took the loss. He pitched two innings. He struck out three, but allowed a run on two hits.
Former Twin farmhand Loek Van Mil pitched a hitless 2 1/3 innings, striking out two.
FT. MYERS 0, BRADENTON 6
The Miracle finished the first half with a very quiet night and enter the All-Star break with a 27-37 record.
Daniel Ortiz provided three (one double) of the Miracle’s four hits. (Angel Morales collected the other.)
Daniel Santana went 0-for-4 tonight (following 0-for-5 last night) to lower his average under .300 for the first time all season.
Pat Dean went 5 1/3 innings allowing six runs (five earned) on seven hits. He walked one and struck out two. Ricky Bowen recorded eight outs, allowing only two hits and a walk. He did allow his only inherited runner to score. Dakota Watts pitched a perfect ninth.
BELOIT 5, PEORIA 3
With today’s win, the Snappers clinched a spot in the playoffs as the 1st
Half Western Division Wild Card.
Miguel Sano went hitless in two at-bats, but managed to walk twice. He has struck out 15 times in his last 37 at-bats (41%). He has struck out in 33% of his at-bats this season. He also walked twice tonight and has a respectable OBP of .351 despite batting only .239. It will be interesting to see how teams pitch to him without Eddie Rosario in the line-up. (Though I would imagine Sano’s absence would have a greater effect on Rosario.)
J.D. Williams led the offense with two hits (one double). Adam Bryant started off the scoring with a 3-run home run in the first inning. Nate Roberts, who has spent a lot of professional career on the disabled list, added a home run.
Roberts is an interesting case. Though he hasn’t often found himself batting leadoff, he does have a career OBP of .437 and has a penchant for getting hit (29 HBP last year). If he can stay healthy, he’s a guy to watch.
Tyler Jones struck out nine in six innings. He allowed only three hits, walking two and allowing three runs. He left a tie ballgame, so was credited with a no decision. Jones now has 33 Ks in 25 innings.
Tim Atherton struck out four in two innings.
Michael Tonkin, who has been on fire of late, continued his run. He struck out the side in the ninth for the save. In Tonkin’s last 8 IP, he has struck out 18. He'll be heading to Fort Myers soon. (Hopefully!)
Players of the Day for Thursday, June 14, 2012
Hitters of the Day – Nathan Hanson
taken from nodaktwinsfan.com
Pitcher of the Day – Tyler Jones
taken from lsusports.net
A Look Ahead – Friday, June 15, 2012 Schedule
Rochester at Louisville – RHP Liam Hendriks (not likely; as it appears Hendriks will be pitching for the Twins on Saturday)
New Britain vs Erie – LHP Aaron Thompson (0-2, 9.35)
Ft. Myers – All-Star Break
Beloit at Burlington – LHP David Hurlbut (2-0, 1.80)
If you have any questions on the Twins minor league system, players, teams, etc., leave them in the Comments and we’ll try to answer them! Comments also welcome.