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Elizabethton Twins Roster Preview

Since Opening Day of the minor league season, we have been doing daily Twins Minor League Reports here at Twins Daily. Each day, we were following the Rochester Red Wings, the New Britain Rock Cats, the Ft. Myers Miracle and the Cedar Rapids Kernels. Meanwhile, many Twins minor leaguers have been in Ft. Myers, working out and playing in extended spring training.

Later this week, those players – along with signed 2014 draft picks – will begin their official seasons. The Elizabethton Twins (Advanced Rookie) open on Thursday while the Gulf Coast League Twins (Rookie) start on Friday afternoon. Today, we’ll take a look at the Elizabethton Twins roster as their season begins. Tomorrow, we’ll look at the Gulf Coast League roster.

Note that these are very brief bios, so feel free to ask any questions you would like.

Attached Image: S Gonsalves.jpg

The Starting Pitchers

Stephen Gonsalves – The Twins 4th round pick in 2013 pitched really well last year for the GCL Twins and the E-Twins in his professional debut. He combined to post a 0.95 ERA and a 1.02 WHIP in 28.1 innings. He walked 11 and struck out 39. If I’m being honest, I’m shocked that he isn’t in Cedar Rapids, and I expect he’ll perform well again.

Sam Gibbons – The 20-year-old Australian has pitched in the GCL each of the last two seasons.

Chih-Wei Hu – The stocky, 20-year-old from Taiwan went 2-0 with a 2.45 ERA last year with the GCL Twins. He walked eight and struck out 39 in 36.2 innings.

Felix Jorge – A year ago, Jorge went 2-2 with a 2.95 ERA in 12 starts for the E-Twins. In 61 innings, he walked 18 and struck out 72. He began this season in Cedar Rapids, but went 2-5 with a 9.00 ERA in 12 games for the Kernels. In 39 innings, he walked 20 and struck out 23 before being sent back to EST.

Derrick Penilla – The 22-year-old lefty was the Twins 15th round pick a year ago. He pitched for the GCL Twins a year ago. He began this season at EST but was promoted to Cedar Rapids where he pitched in just seven games before heading back down.

Mike Cederoth – Cederoth is the hard-throwing third round pick from San Diego State. He signed just last week. He pitched primarily out of the bullpen where his 98 mph fastball plays well. He has had opportunities to start in college, but his downfall has been his control. The Twins are going to give him a chance to start.

The Relief Pitchers

Cameron Booser – He signed after the 2013 draft after not being drafted. He pitched in just three games at the end of the GCL season. Reports from spring training indicate that the 6-3, 225 pound lefty throws really hard.

Sam Clay – The Twins 4th round pick this year out of Georgia Tech. Some think he may be able to start at some point, but he’ll likely continue to work out of the bullpen for the E-Twins this summer.

Andro Cutura – He was the Twins 7th round pick this season out of Southeastern Louisiana University.

CK Irby – Irby was the Twins 10th round pick just last year out of Samford University. He pitched in ten games last year for the E-Twins.

Randy LeBlanc – LeBlanc was the Twins 10th round pick this year from Tulane University. He was a fourth-year, redshirt junior.

Kuo Hua Lo – Lo pitched for the E-Twins a year ago. In 38 innings, he walked 14 and struck out 34 in 38 innings. He was 2-1 with a 2.37 ERA. The right-hander from Taiwan is 21 years old.

Dereck Rodriguez – The Twins selected Ivan Rodriguez’s son with their 6th pick in the 2011 draft out of high school. After hitting .216/.279/.336 (.615) over three years in the rookie leagues, he has been moved to pitcher where the hope is his strong right-arm will be able to get hitters out.

Keaton Steele – He was the Twins 8th round pick this year out of the University of Missouri, which has been a hot bed for big league pitchers in the last half-dozen years.


Brett Doe – Doe was the Twins 38th round pick this year out of Baylor University.

Brian Navaretto – Navaretto was the Twins 6th round pick last year out of high school in Jacksonville, Florida. The 6-4, 220 pound (at least), 19-year-old hit .226/.318/.365 (.683) with ten doubles and three homers with the GCL Twins last year. He is quite impressive in spring training and has a ceiling of Salvador Perez.

Alex Real – He was the Braves 48th round pick out of high school. He went to the University of New Mexico where he was a teammate of Kernels' catcher Mitch Garver. Real played first base and DH his first two years as Garver caught. He caught this year. The Twins selected him with their 24th round pick this year.


Nick Gordon – The Twins top pick will begin his professional career with Elizabethton. This is not a typical Twins move as even Kohl Stewart and Byron Buxton began their careers with the GCL. It will be interesting how Gordon adapts to professional ball, wood bats and life away from his family. Don’t worry at all about the stats, but it is very exciting to see him get started.

Jonatan Hinojosa – He is a 21 year old who spent three seasons in the Dominican Summer League. He spent last season in the GCL where he hit .236/.310/.336. He began this season at EST but was promoted to Cedar Rapids where he played one game before being suspended for 50 games. His suspension continues.

Will Hurt – Hurt was drafted in the 16th round in 2012 out of Lexington High School, the same school Ben Revere went to. He has spent the last two seasons in the GCL. Last year, he hit .342 but had a .387 OBP as he walked 16 times and struck out 17 times. He’s a speed guy who can play both middle infield positions.

Pat Kelly – Kelly was the Twins 12th round pick out of the University of Nebraska. The Red Wings, MN, native had a solid three-year career with the Cornhuskers. He should play a lot of second base.

Tyler Mautner – Mautner was the Twins 14th round pick this year out of the University of Buffalo, the same school as Kernels outfielder Jason Kanzler. The third baseman is believed to have good power.

Blake Schmidt – Another Eden Prairie native, Schmidt was the Twins 26th round pick after three years at the University of Maryland.

Trev Vavra – He was the Twins 33rd round pick this year out of Florida Southern University. As you know, he is the son of Twins third base coach, Joe, and the brother of Kernels second baseman, Tanner.


Dutch Deol – Deol was the Cardinals 17th round pick out of high school in 2011. He has spent the last three years in the rookie leagues and was hurt most of last year. He hit .152/.245/.230 over those three years and the Cardinals let him go. He’s a good athlete so the Twins took a shot, signing him to a free agent contract.

Austin Diemer – He was the Twins 28th round pick after his career as a centerfielder at Cal State-Fullerton. He is a good athlete.

Max Murphy – Another Minnesota native, Murphy was the Twins 9th round pick this year out of Bradley University. Another guy drafted as a centerfielder, he will get a chance to play around the outfield. He is from Robbinsdale, MN.


Josh Burris – RHP
JT Chargois – RHP
Jorge Fernandez – C
Carson Goldsmith – RHP
Jake Proctor – OF
Tyler Stirewalt – RHP
Ryan Tufts – OF

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