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Article: Kernels with Pitching Issues? Oddly, yes.

Twins Minor League Talk Today, 04:55 AM
Welcome to life as a minor league manager.The Cedar Rapids Kernels have some of the best pitching in Class A baseball right now. So why i...
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Interesting interview with Terry Ryan

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 02:37 AM
This article contains some interesting statements by Terry Ryan, including the following:   Pohlad said last fall that Ryan’s job is...
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A Far-Fetched Trade

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 12:36 AM
As per MLBTR, the Cubbies and Braves are in talks that would move Edwin Jackson to the Braves for Mike Minor & B.J. Upton.   htt...
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Can managers be traded in MLB?

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 12:36 AM
I seem to remember it happening a few times but I can't remember if MLB changed the rules on that.  Anyone know?  The reason I...
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What's wrong with Baseball?

More Baseball Today, 12:36 AM
http://deadspin.com/...ball-1628473196   Excellent article on deadspin about the issues baseball is now dealing with.  I'd add...
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The Store


2014 GCL Twins Roster Preview

On Thursday night, the short-season Elizabethton Twins opened their season with a win in Greeneville. This afternoon, the Gulf Coast League Twins begin their schedule. Today, I’ll be taking a look and trying to familiarize Twins Daily readers with these young players.

The GCL squad is always an interesting mix of players from all over the world and with all kinds of experiences and backgrounds. This season is no different. There are some 17 year olds who signed internationally a year ago, and there are some 22 year olds who just finished their fourth year of college baseball.

Some of these players will work their way up to Elizabethton later in the season. Maybe next year a couple of them will work their way up to full season Cedar Rapids.

Please feel free to ask any questions you may have.

Attached Image: NelsonMolina.jpg

[SIZE=2]Nelson Molina[/SIZE]


The Pitchers

Mat Batts – The Twins drafted former Baseball America intern in the 17th round this month out of UNC-Wilmington. He will not use Batts to earn his pay in baseball. Instead he will use his left arm, which may not hit 90 on a radar gun, but can throw three pitches. He went 6-3 with a 2.69 ERA and a 1.05 WHIP in 15 starts. In 103.2 innings, he walked just 18 and struck out 105.

Eddie Del Rosario
– Eddie Del Rosario made his professional debut last summer in the Dominican Summer League. In 44.1 innings, the right-hander gave up just 22 hits. He also walked 25 while striking out 30. The now 19-year-old went 2-3 with a 2.03 ERA.

Brandon Easton
–The Twins drafted Easton in the 24th round last year as a left-handed pitcher out of Lakeland Community College. There, he played a lot of first base, but at 6-5, he profiled more as a pitcher. He throws hard, but he’s still learning to pitch. Last year in the GCL, he went 1-3 with a 7.45 ERA and a 1.97 WHIP. In 19.1 innings, he gave up 25 hits, walked 13 and struck out 11.

Onas Farfan
–The Twins took Farfan in the 21st round this year out of Ridgewater College which is in Willmar/Hutchinson. The Venezuelan moved to Minnesota when he was 16 to live with relatives. It is being pointed out that he was the first player drafted out of the Minneapolis RBI program. He is left-handed, hits 91 and made a name for himself with an impressive showing in the Northwoods League in 2013.

Miguel Gonzalez
– The 19-year-old right-hander pitched in 20 games out of the bullpen last year in the GCL. In 25.2 innings, he gave up just 20 hits, walked nine and struck out 33. He went 0-0 with three saves and a 1.05 ERA and a WHIP of 1.13.

Josh Guyer
– The Twins signed the right-hander out of Australia in 2012. Last year, he made his professional debut with the GCL team. He went 1-2 with a 5.30 ERA and a 1.66 WHIP in just 18.2 innings. He gave up 18 hits, walked 13 and struck out 22.

Zach Hayden
– 23rd round 2013, U South Carolina – Zach Hayden was the Twins 23rd round pick out of the University of South Carolina, in Aiken, S.C. Last year he pitched just nine innings in the GCL. He went 1-0 and didn’t give up a run. He walked five and struck out six.

Onesimo Hernandez
– Though Hernandez is already 22, 2013 was his professional debut in the Dominican Summer League. In 46 innings, the right-hander gave up 48 hits, walked 17 and struck out 32. he was 2-3 with a 4.11 ERA and a 1.41 WHIP.

Trev Hildenberger
– He was the Twins 22nd round pick just this year out of Cal-Berkley. He was the team’s closer and pitched in 28 games. In 47.2 innings, he gave up 41 hits, walked 11 and struck out 48. He went 3-3 with 10 saves with a 2.83 ERA and a 1.09 WHIP.

Wilfredy Loranzo
– The 19-year-old righty made his pro debut last year in the DSL. He went 3-4 with a 3.07 ERA and a 1.17 WHIP. In 51 innings, he gave up just 21 hits. He walked 27 but struck out 62.

Miles Nordgren
– Nordgren was the Twins 23rd round pick this year out of Birmingham Southern. He was 8-2 with a 1.37 ERA in 78.2 innings. He walked just 11 and struck out 62.

Callan Pearce
– The Twins signed Pearce from Australia last year when he was just 16. 2014 will be his professional debut.

Alexis Tapia
– Tapia spent 2013 as a 17-year-old in the Dominican Summer League. The right-hander went 2-1 with a 2.13 ERA with a 0.87 WHIP. In 42 innings, he issued just five walks while striking out 31.

Mike Thoefanopoulos
– If nothing else, the Twins 30th round pick will make things difficult for Twins writers and bloggers. The left-hander went to the University of California at Berkley. He went 7-27 (.259) with a home run as a hitter for the Golden Bears this season. In 25.1 innings on the mound, he gave up 29 hits, walked 11 and struck out 24.

Zack Tillery
– Zack Tillery is a hard-throwing, right-handed reliever the Twins drafted out of Florida Gulf Coast this year in the 13th round. He hit .314/.388/.476 (.864) with 17 extra base hits, but he was drafted as a pitcher. He pitched 35.2 innings and gave up 39 hits, walked 14 and struck out 28.

Seth Wagner
– Wagner was the Twins 39th round pick a year ago after his high school career in Pennsylvania. The lefty signed fairly late and pitched 10.2 innings over six games in the GCL. He gave up only five hits, but he walked seven while striking out eight.

Reyson Zoquiel
– Zoquiel is a left-hander who throws hard. In 2013, he made his US debut in the GCL after two seasons in the DSL. He worked just 14 innings, in large part due to control issues. He gave up 17 hits and 17 walks leading to his 2.49 WHIP.

The Catchers


Gabriel Ojeda
– Ojeda was the Twins 27th round pick this year out of high school in Puerto Rico. A young but strong, athletic catcher. He has an average arm, but has put up some very good pop times. Offensively, he could develop some power.

Jarrard Poteete
– Poteete was the Twins 19th round pick this year out of Connors State College (a junior college). He hit .390/.481/.538 (1.019) with 15 doubles, a triple and four home runs.

Rainis Silva
– Silva, who is just 18 years old, made his professional debut last summer in the DSL. He hit just .223/.289/.250 (.539) with four doubles. He has a strong arm.

The Infielders


Jack Barrie
– The Twins signed the lumbering 18-year-old from Australia late last year. He certainly has a lot of power potential.

Manuel Guzman
– In 2013, Guzman was an 18 year old making his pro debut in the DSL. He hit .291/.392/.378 (.770) with four doubles, three triples and a home run. He stole 12 bases. It should be noted as well that he walked 23 times while striking out 19 times.

Nelson Molina
– A year ago, Molina was the Twins 11th round pick out of high school in Puerto Rico. It was a tough debut with the bat as he hit just .110/.178/.119 (.297) with one double. However, at 6-3 and 175 pounds, he has a chance to grow. Defensively, the belief is that he can be a big league shortstop, though he will also play some second base. He compares favorably, in my mind, with Engelb Vielma.

Ariel Montesino
– A year ago, Montesino was a 17 year old making his pro debut in the DSL. He hit .270/.393/.419 (.812) with two doubles, three triples and a home run. He also stole eight bases.

Joel Ramirez
– Last year was Ramirez’s first year in the DSL. He hit .252/.394/.315 (.709) with seven doubles and a triple. He also stole 20 bases. Although he played around the infield, he was mostly at shortstop.

Rafael Valera
– Valera has spent each of the past two years in the DSL. As an 18-year-old last year, he hit .262/.420/.315 (.736) with five doubles and two triples. He stole 19 bases. He played all over the infield and outfield, but primarily at third base.

Ruar Verkerk
– He was signed last offseason as a 16 year old from Netherlands. He's now 17 and will likely play mostly at third base.

The Outfielders


Dubal Baez
– After spending four seasons in the DSL, the 21-year-old Baez will make his debut in the US with the GCL Twins. Last year, he hit .335/.447/.396 (.844) with eight doubles and a triple. He also stole 27 bases. He primarily played in center field, but also got time in the middle infield.

Tyree Davis
– Davis was the Twins 37th round pick earlier this month of out high school in Compton, California. A great athlete with speed, Davis fits the profile of toolsy, athletic type. He is a switch-hitter who can play a good centerfield.

Frank Encarnacion
– Last year in the DSL, Encarnacion hit .267/.344/.422 (.766) with 13 doubles, a triple and two home runs. The 18-year-old played all three outfield positions, mostly in left field. He’s one of those rare players who bats right-handed and throws left-handed.

Roberto Gonzalez
– This toolsy outfielder from Orlando was the Twins 15th round pick this year. He has very good speed and can play good defense. Depending on how many of his tools become skills, he is certainly one to watch.

Amaurys Minier
– Just 18, Minier made his US debut last year in the GCL. He hit .214/.252/.455 (.707) with five doubles, two triples and six home runs. He played third base. This spring, he had shoulder surgery so he missed a lot of time. That is likely part of the reason that he is back in the GCL, and may be part of why he is now in the outfield.

Disabled List

Jose Abreu
– 21, RHP
Damian Defrank – 18, RHP
Leonel Zazueta – 19, RHP
Jhon Silva – 21, RHP (After three years as an outfielder in the DSL, he was moved to pitcher last year. This is his US debut.)
Joel Polanco – 21, C/1B


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