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Twins Minor League Hitter of the Month - July 2019

That trade deadline has passed. August marks the final month of the minor league season. In July, there were a lot of great offensive performances. For the first time, we include players from the Twins short-season, rookie league affiliates. Before we get to our Top 5 Twins prospects, there is a list of a dozen Honorable Mentions.

This month’s group of Twins minor leaguers is quite diverse. There are players represented from all six affiliates in the States. There are 18-year-old players and there are 30-year-old players.There are even a couple of people who aren’t in the Twins organization in this month’s awards.

Previous 2019 Hitters of the Month:

April - Trey Cabbage
May - Lewin Diaz
June - Brent Rooker
July - Keep Reading (or just look at the graphic of this article…)
Image courtesy of Seth Stohs, Twins Daily (graphics by Finn Pearson)
Let’s take a look at the Top 5 hitters for the month of July, but first here are some players deserving of honorable mention.


HONORABLE MENTION
  • Jimmy Kerrigan - Rochester Red Wings/Pensacola Blue Wahoos - 25-103, .243/.259/.534 (.793) with 6 doubles, 8 home runs and 16 RBI.
  • Drew Maggi - Rochester Red Wings - 28-91, .308/.427/.484 (.911) with 3 doubles, 2 triples, 3 home runs and 15 RBI.
  • Ronald Torreyes - Rochester Red Wings - 33-105, .314/.345/.524 (.869) with 5 doubles, 1 triple, 5 home runs and 16 RBI.
  • Lewin Diaz - Ft. Myers Miracle/Pensacola Blue Wahoos - 23-79, .291/.352/.557 (.909) with 9 doubles, 4 homers and 17 RBI.
  • Royce Lewis - Ft. Myers Miracle/Pensacola Blue Wahoos - 25-94, .266/.330/.457 (.788) with 6 doubles, 4 homers and 12 RBI.
  • Gabe Snyder - Cedar Rapids Kernels - 30-104, .288/.361/.538 (.900) with 5 doubles, 7 homers and 16 RBI.
  • Spencer Steer - Elizabethton Twins/Cedar Rapids Kernels - 32-101, .317/.423/.485 (.908) with 7 doubles, 2 triples, 2 homers, 11 RBI.
  • Albee Weiss - Elizabethton Twins/Cedar Rapids Kernels - 21-86, .244/.272/581 (.853) with 3 doubles, 1 triple, 8 home runs and 21 RBI.
  • Alex Isola - Eliabethton Twins/Cedar Rapids Kernels - 14-54, .259/.317/.481 (.798) with 3 doubles, 3 homers and 11 RBI.
  • Willie Joe Garry, Jr. - Elizabethton Twins - 26-93, .280/.356/.473 (.829) with 5 doubles, 2 triples, 3 homers and 13 RBI.
  • Max Smith - Elizabethton Twins - 26-85, .306/.344/.576 (.921) with 6 doubles, 1 triple, 5 homers and 13 RBI.
  • Wander Valdez - GCL Twins - 21-59, .356/.415/.593 (1.009) with 2 doubles, 4 homers and 11 RBI.
THE TOP FIVE HITTERS

Number 5 - Elizabethton Twins – OF Matt Wallner - 30-104, .288/.393/.500 (.893) with 14 doubles, 1 triple, 2 home runs, 17 RBI.

Wallner was born in Forest Lake, MN, which is where he graduated from high school and was named Mr. Baseball. He was set to go to the University of North Dakota but the school dropped its baseball program. Instead, he went to Southern Mississippi where he became an All-American. The Twins used the 39th overall pick in this June’s draft to select him. While he was a dominant reliever in college, the Twins will use him as a power-hitting outfielder. As you can see from his first full month in professional baseball, he has a chance to hit, and rack up a lot of extra-base hits.


Number 4 - Rochester Red Wings - SS Nick Gordon - 39-112, .348/.402/.536 (.937), 13 doubles, 1 triple, 2 home runs, 18 RBI.

Gordon’s introduction to Triple-A and the International League didn’t go so smoothly in 2018. His 2019 began on the injured list. However, Nick Gordon has been a doubles machine this season for the Red Wings. He’s hit for average, been able to get on base, and he’s displaying extra-base power. If the Twins have a need in the infield, he could get that call. Or, he could be a September call-up to provide depth.

Number 3 – Cedar Rapids Kernels - OF Gilberto Celestino - 38-103, .369/.430/.563 (.993) with 7 doubles, 2 triples, 3 home runs, 14 RBI.

Young Gilberto Celestino made his first appearance for a full-season affiliate and was also introduced to the early-season weather in the Midwest League. Celestino struggled. However, he made some adjustments and had a huge month in July. Celestino was a big international signing of the Astros and came to the Twins last July in the Ryan Pressly trade. He is very athletic and a good outfielder. He’s got speed and is very strong.

Number 2 - Rochester Red Wings – C/1B/DH Wilin Rosario - 33-78, .423/.472/.744 (1.215) with 7 doubles, 6 home runs, ss RBI.

The 30-year-old Rosario spent parts of the 2011-2015 seasons with the Colorado Rockies. He hit 83 doubles and 71 home runs in 447 games. Since then, he has played in Japan and Korea. The Twins signed him to a minor league deal over the winter. While he has mostly DHd for the Red Wings this year, he’s caught and played first base 16 times this year as well. He has been providing power throughout the season and had a huge month in July. He, and Tomas Telis, are providing strong catcher depth for the Twins in Rochester.


And the Twins Minor League Hitter of the Month is:

Rochester Red Wings – OF Jaylin Davis - 39-106, .368/.442/.755 (1.196) with 8 doubles, 11 homers, 27 RBI.


Since his mid-June promotion to the Rochester Red Wings, Jaylin Davis has not stopped hitting. The hashtag #HasJaylinDavisHomeredYet became a thing. Well, I mean, I started it and did it a few times because the answer was usually Yes.


Sure, the Triple-A baseballs probably don’t hurt, but Davis also made some adjustments this season, He hit 10 home runs in 58 games in Pensacola. After the promotion, he hit 15 homers in 41 games for the Red Wings.


But he wasn’t “just” hitting for power. He has had a much better approach at the plate. He has cut down on the strikeouts. He hit for average. Some have told me that he is using the whole field better. Most of his Red Wings homers have been hit to center and right center.


Jaylin Davis was well on his way toward the Twins Daily Minor League HItter of the Year award. And for his efforts, he was traded to the Giants as part of the July 31st deadline as part of a package that brought Sam Dyson to the Twins. And that may have been the best thing for Davis. The Giants have been looking for outfielders most of this season. In his first game for Sacramento, the Giants’ AAA affiliate, on Friday night. He went 3-for-3 with a walk and two doubles.


We would like to congratulate Jaylin Davis, Twins Daily’s choice for Minor League Hitter of the Month for July 2019. Feel free to share your thoughts and ask questions.

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21 Comments

Well, at least for the first two days of the trade, looks like the Giants won it.

    • mikelink45, Dman, MNT1996 and 1 other like this

I am going to miss Davis but you can't keep them all.He had some tough years but the Twins stuck with him.I really think he is ready for the Majors so I agree the trade is really good for him and the Giants. 

    • glunn, big dog and DannySD like this

 

I am going to miss Davis but you can't keep them all.He had some tough years but the Twins stuck with him.I really think he is ready for the Majors so I agree the trade is really good for him and the Giants. 

 

Yep. And as much as it will hurt if he ends up having a great career, the Twins played it right in selling high on a non-top 30 for an immediate (and desperate) need.

    • Danchat, big dog, goulik and 4 others like this

 

Yep. And as much as it will hurt if he ends up having a great career, the Twins played it right in selling high on a non-top 30 for an immediate (and desperate) need.

 

Well I don't think the Twins can say they played it right yet. That will be determined by how far they get in postseason. As of right now, it looks like the Twins got played by the Giants.

    • jz7233 likes this

Well I don't think the Twins can say they played it right yet. That will be determined by how far they get in postseason. As of right now, it looks like the Twins got played by the Giants.


That's like saying you should have hit at 19 in blackjack because the next card ended up being a deuce.

They don't have a crystal ball.
They don't know if Dyson is going to perform below, at, or above his established talent level.
They don't know how his teammates are going to perform in the postseason.
They needed bullpen help, and Davis was a fair price to pay for it. They didn't get played, no matter how the results turn out.
    • glunn, Mike Sixel, SD Buhr and 3 others like this

 

Well I don't think the Twins can say they played it right yet. That will be determined by how far they get in postseason. As of right now, it looks like the Twins got played by the Giants.

Don't forget that they have another year of control over Dyson in 2020, which I imagine was a big factor in the price of the trade. I also find it hard to "get played" when a team gives up 3 non top-30 prospects. Davis might become a good MLB player, but with Kepler, Buxton, Rosario, and Rooker, Kiriloff, and Larnach on the way, there wasn't room for him.

    • glunn, goulik, mikelink45 and 1 other like this
I don't know, that honorable mention list looks pretty good.

Awesome to see what Gordon has done this season. Two straight seasons with a second half fade have been disconcerting. I remain a little leary about that still as his season started late. Has time, growth and continued physical maturation put that concern aside? Or could it still be a concern? Here is hoping for the former. Very encouraged not only by his hitting, but his OB and increased power.

I think Arreaz is the 2B next season. And he might just be a fixture there. But in no way should Gordon be dismissed simply because he didn't progress and reach the ML level as quickly as hoped. Not so long ago, it seemed the Twins were not only thin, but borderline desperate for infield help. Suddenly we have Polanco, Arraez, Gonzalez, Adrianza, Gordon and even a young journeyman in Torreyes who has some ML experience and we haven't even had to consider him this season.
    • glunn likes this
Very pleased by the early success of Wallner. Just wish he was going to spend the last month at CR. It would seem a natural progression and end to the year for him.
    • glunn and Dman like this
Photo
drivlikejehu
Aug 03 2019 06:03 PM

Kinda funny that Kerrigan got an honorable mention, but most of his time was in AAA and his offensive performance there (despite the 6 HRs) was actually around average for the league.

 

Don't forget that they have another year of control over Dyson in 2020, which I imagine was a big factor in the price of the trade. I also find it hard to "get played" when a team gives up 3 non top-30 prospects. Davis might become a good MLB player, but with Kepler, Buxton, Rosario, and Rooker, Kiriloff, and Larnach on the way, there wasn't room for him.

 

With Buxton being on the IL every other week it sure would've been nice to have Jaylin right now. There's room for him now. I bet he would've done better than what Cave has shown the Twins this year.

With Buxton being on the IL every other week it sure would've been nice to have Jaylin right now. There's room for him now. I bet he would've done better than what Cave has shown the Twins this year.


Don't the Giants have him playing at AAA?
    • goulik likes this

Very encouraged to see Celestino third on this list.He was a big part of the Pressley trade so I am hoping he turns into a special player.He has had a really good month.Hopefully he has figured some things out and continues to improve and move up.

    • glunn and DannySD like this

With Buxton being on the IL every other week it sure would've been nice to have Jaylin right now. There's room for him now. I bet he would've done better than what Cave has shown the Twins this year.


Despite his great season, he was still way down the organizational depth chart and would not have appeared in a Twins uniform before multiple others also needing 40 man roster spots.
    • ashbury likes this
Wait a minute... The Twins just traded the hottest hitter in the minors, and you guys are OK with that?? Lol!! Maybe this explains WHY we haven't won the World Series since 1991. Btw..Davis just went yard again. That's 2 HR in 3 games with Sacramento. Smdh

 

Well, at least for the first two days of the trade, looks like the Giants won it.

 

I guess based on today's developments, the Giants are winning this trade in a romp- for at least half of August....

Nice to see Gordon hitting well in AAA.For everyone that keeps dropping him down the prospect lists, it is interesting if you look at his career.He has moved up the levels slow and steady, similar to Aaron Hicks, not comparing in any other fashion than both had slow learning curve per level.  

 

Not sure what Gordon's defense has been looking like, but offense wise he will be demanding a MLB spot next year.The question is with what team.Twins have SS and 2nd pretty locked up next year, barring injury, with Polonco and Aarriz.3rd is possibly open, depending on what they do with Sano and 1st base.  

 

I bet Gordon gets dealt during off season now that he is looking MLB ready.If his defense at SS is holding well, he should draw some good attention from rebuilding teams with controlled starting pitching that are not ready to compete.  

Davis hit home runs in his next two games in the PCL. Still crushing and I hope he's called up for the Giants soon! He landed in a great spot.

Wait a minute... The Twins just traded the hottest hitter in the minors, and you guys are OK with that?? Lol!! Maybe this explains WHY we haven't won the World Series since 1991. Btw..Davis just went yard again. That's 2 HR in 3 games with Sacramento. Smdh

The Twins Minor league system has had plenty of players tear things up, arrive at the majors, and then get their butts kicked. Remember Yohan Pino, AJ Achter, Adam Brett Walker? No?

Jaylin Davis may go on to be a good 4th OF, but calling up hot prospects doesn’t win championships. Jake Cave was crushing AAA as well and check out his stat line!
    • Mike Sixel likes this

 

The Twins Minor league system has had plenty of players tear things up, arrive at the majors, and then get their butts kicked. Remember Yohan Pino, AJ Achter, Adam Brett Walker? No?

Jaylin Davis may go on to be a good 4th OF, but calling up hot prospects doesn’t win championships. Jake Cave was crushing AAA as well and check out his stat line!

Also worth maintaining some perspective on where Davis was doing what he was doing. Rochester's team OPS is .829...and Jake Cave was OPS'ing .984.

 

In his 250+ PA at Pensacola this season, Davis was still very good, but the numbers/results were not stupid like we're seeing in AAA this year. At Pensacola, his results were basically the same as Travis Blankenhorn's this year. Relative to Blankenhorn, Davis showed slightly LESS power and slightly more BB/OBP...(and fwiw, Blankenhorn is two years younger than Davis).

 

Still, it seems obvious Davis has hit a new level in his development. He will be an interesting one to watch. I hope he does well...he's earned the opportunity.

    • Mike Sixel, Danchat and Faucet like this
With all due respect, I don't think anyone in the front office KNOWS what it takes to win a championship. The Twins haven't won the pennant since 1991. 1991!!

Jaylin Davis is 3 home runs shy of 30! This isn't about comparing one prospect vs another. This is about providing the team with every tool necessary to make a run at it. He should've been called up to see what he can do before trading him.

I'm pretty sure SF will call him up before Sept 1st. And based on their track record, I think they know what it takes to win a ring.
With all due respect, I don't think anyone in the front office KNOWS what it takes to win a championship. The Twins haven't won the pennant since 1991. 1991!!

Jaylin Davis is 3 home runs shy of 30! This isn't about comparing one prospect vs another. This is about providing the team with every tool necessary to make a run at it. He should've been called up to see what he can do before trading him.

I'm pretty sure SF will call him up before Sept 1st. And based on their track record, I think they know what it takes to win a ring.