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The Rays got their man at the deadline. Arggggh!

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Twins Minor League Report (6/11): Miracle Clinch, Turtle Power

In the years of writing the minor league report, one message has remained true: A winning tradition starts in an organization’s minor leagues. Twins fans are seeing the results of a winning tradition at the big-league level. Multiple players on the big-league roster were parts of winning clubs on their way to Target Field. That winning tradition continued Tuesday night.
Image courtesy of Linwood Ferguson, Captive Photons (Ryan Jeffers)
RED WINGS REPORT
Rochester 4, Columbus 3
Box Score
On Sunday night, I wrote about Willians Astudillo not wanting to be in Rochester. He has been trying to hit his way back to Minnesota. He’s had 11 at-bats in Rochester so far and he has collected eight hits. I’ll let that sink in a little. Tonight, he clocked the go-ahead home run in the sixth inning. Talk about Turtle Power!

Jake Cave also continued his hot hitting ways. He reached base three times including his 12th double along with scoring a run. Nick Gordon got the scoring started early with a first inning solo home run. Brent Rooker reached base three times including his ninth double.

On the mound, Devin Smeltzer went five strong innings, striking out seven and walking one. He allowed three runs, all of which came off two home runs. Rochester’s bullpen picked up the slack as they allowed one hit in the final four innings. Cody Stashak struck out three in two shutout innings. Gabriel Moya and Fernando Romero combined to strikeout three over the final two innings.

BLUE WAHOO BITES
Pensacola 0, Biloxi 6
Box Score
The Blue Wahoos struggled to find any offense in this game. Travis Blankenhorn and Taylor Grzelakowski had the team’s only hits and both players reached base two times. Pensacola struck out 16 time against Shuckers pitchers. Overall, the club went 0-for-4 with runners in scoring position and left six men on base.

Andro Cutura started and pitched five innings. He allowed four runs on four hits with seven strikeouts and two walks. His seven strikeouts were a season high. Adam Bray took over for Cutura and he tried to make it through the rest of the game. He ran into some trouble in the bottom of the eighth as two men crossed the plate. He lasted 2 2/3 innings while striking out three and walking one. Jordan Gore recorded the last out and allowed one hit.

MIRACLE MATTERS
Ft. Myers 6, Tampa 1 (Game 1- 7 Innings)
Box Score
With the first-half division title on the line, Ryan Jeffers and Giancarlo Stanton got into a home run battle. Spoiler alert… Jeffers comes out on top. In Game 1 of the double-header, Jeffers cracked a pair of two-run home runs to help the Miracle. Trevor Larnach also helped the cause as he went 3-for-3 and scored two runs. Michael Helman added a two-run double to help stretch the lead.

Tyler Watson pitched into the fifth inning and held Tampa to one earned run, a home run to Stanton. He struck out four and walked one in 4 2/3 innings. Joe Record pitched 2 1/3 scoreless frames to put the Miracle in position to clinch a first-half title. He struck out two and limited the Tarpons to one hit.

Ft. Myers 7, Tampa 2 (Game 2- 7 Innings)
Box Score
Royce Lewis got things started in the first inning as he singled and moved to second on a throwing error on a pickoff attempt. Lewin Diaz moved him to third on a groundout before a wild pitch allowed Lewis to scamper home.

Fort Myers kept it going in the second as the first four batters reached base. Mark Contreras singled and Trey Cabbage followed with a walk. Ernie De La Trinidad singled to load the bases and then Ryan Costello stepped to the plate. His sixth double of the season scored two runs to put the Miracle up 3-0.

That would be more than enough for Melvi Acosta. He started for the Miracle and tossed five shutout innings. He limited Tampa to four hits while adding three strikeouts. It was his first time making it through five innings since May 5. Alex Phillips allowed two runs during the final two innings, but Fort Myers had more than enough to clinch the first half title.






KERNELS NUGGETS
Cedar Rapids 4, Wisconsin 1
Box Score
Cedar Rapids waited until the fifth inning to get their bats going, but the club was able to push across runs in three consecutive frames to come out on top. Austin Schulfer was in control on the mound. He limited Wisconsin to one hit over six innings. He struck out eight and walked two on the way to his first win since May 22.

Carlos Suniaga earned his first hold as he struck out the side in the seventh inning. Derek Molina picked up his eighth save and like many of his other appearances this year, he was asked to get more than three outs. Over two innings, he didn’t allow a hit, struck out two, and walked one.

Gabe Snyder provided most of the offensive punch. He went 2-for-3 with a pair of home runs. His three RBIs were the difference in the game. Jared Akins added his seventh home run, a solo shot in the sixth inning.

TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY
TD Pitcher of the Day- Austin Schulfer, Cedar Rapids (6.0 IP, 1 ER, 1 H, 8 K, 3 BB)
TD Hitter of the Day- Ryan Jeffers, Fort Myers (2-for-6, 2 HR, 4 RBI, BB, 2 R, K)

PROSPECT SUMMARY
Here’s a look at how the Twins Daily Top 20 Twins Prospects performed:

#1 - Royce Lewis (Ft. Myers) – 3-8, R, RBI, K
#2 - Alex Kirilloff (Pensacola) – Injured list
#3 - Brusdar Graterol (Pensacola) – Injured list (shoulder)
#4 - Trevor Larnach (Ft. Myers) – 4-7, 2 R
#5 - Wander Javier (Cedar Rapids) – 0-4
#6 - Brent Rooker (Rochester) – 1-2, 2B, R, RBI, 2 BB
#7 - Jhoan Duran (Ft. Myers) – Did not pitch
#8 - Lewis Thorpe (Rochester) – Did not pitch
#9 - Blayne Enlow (Ft. Myers) – Did not pitch
#10 - Akil Baddoo (Ft. Myers) – Injured List (Tommy John surgery)
#11 - Nick Gordon (Rochester) – 1-4, HR, R, RBI, 2 K
#12 - Stephen Gonsalves (Rochester) – Injured list (elbow)
#13 - Ryan Jeffers (Ft. Myers) – 2-6, 2 HR, 4 RBI, BB, 2 R, K
#14 - Ben Rortvedt (Pensacola) – 0-3, BB, K
#15 - Yunior Severino (Cedar Rapids) – Injured List (thumb)
#16 - Gilberto Celestino (Cedar Rapids) – 0-4
#17 - Zack Littell (Rochester) – Did not pitch
#18 - LaMonte Wade (Rochester) – 1-3, RBI, K
#19 - Jorge Alcala (Pensacola) – Did not pitch
#20 - Jose Miranda (Ft. Myers) – 0-3

WEDNESDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS
Rochester vs. Columbus (6:05 CST) – LHP Lewis Thorpe (3-3, 5.95 ERA)
Pensacola vs. Tennessee (6:35 CST) – LHP Bryan Sammons (4-1, 2.29 ERA)
Fort Myers @ Tampa (5:30 CST) – TBD
Cedar Rapids vs. Wisconsin (12:05 CST) – LHP Kody Funderburk (0-0, 0.00 ERA)

Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss Tuesday’s games.

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35 Comments

Thing I'm actually most excited about from these box scores you ask?

 

Rooker....taken them walks (he'll always hit home runs and strike out, but if he adds consistent walks to his repertoire.....a major leaguer he could be....

    • h2oface, Dman, DocBauer and 5 others like this

I'm not even sure what to think about AAA stats anymore. With the offensive spike, most hitters are crushing the ball and the average ERA is around 5.00, so it's harder to see how guys are going to transition to the majors. But you have to be pretty confident in your backups in case any position player gets hurt. You've got Arraez, Astudillo, Cave, and possibly even Gordon and Wiel in the wings - that's some solid depth!

    • mikelink45 and DocBauer like this

Rooker seems to be turning the corner at AAA... Look out! Including tonight's game, he's had an even 50 PA since June 1st. In those 50 PA he's struck out only 12 times, drawn 12 walks (24%), and hit .429/.540/.629!

    • Steve Lein, jokin, h2oface and 6 others like this

Misael Urbina update:

 

 

    • mikelink45, Dman, rdehring and 1 other like this
What's the story on akins? He's been hitting a lot of homers since coming up to cedar rapids

We got some stars in Fort Myers dont we? That's gonna be fun to watch those guys mature.

    • Seth Stohs and dbminn like this

Astudillo wouldn't be in Rochester if he was always 8-11. How many hits were by swinging at balls in the zone? That is probably what will get him another shot. That, or one of the catchers going on the IL.

    • Cap'n Piranha, jokin and DocBauer like this

The boxes have Lewis 2/9 with 4 strikeouts and the homer, a bit different than the summary, which is 3/8. Plus, he finishes game 1 hitting .222, and then he goes 1/5 in game 2, and raises his average to .228. That is some fuzzy math.

What fun and yes - I am still an Astudillo fan!

    • Dman likes this
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Old Twins Cap
Jun 12 2019 05:46 AM

I am glad that I am not an announcer and don't need to say Tampa Tarpons three times fast.

 

 

    • DocBauer, PDX Twin, dbminn and 2 others like this
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clutterheart
Jun 12 2019 06:28 AM
FSL all star game is this weekend?
Hope to see some promotions after.
Maybe
Diaz
Larnach
Duran
Jeffers
    • d-mac likes this

Your opening paragraph, Cody, is something those of us who follow these teams closely have been praying for the last five or six years.  

 

Congrats to the Miracle, but can the Kernels also sneak into the playoffs after a truly ugly start to their season?They are one game behind Burlington for the second playoff slot.Expect there are only a couple games left, will they make it?

 

Hopefully, Lewis Thorpe will throw his hat into the ring for a Twins debut by pitching a great game tonight.

 

 

    • dbminn and MN_ExPat like this
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Taildragger8791
Jun 12 2019 07:04 AM

 

Rooker seems to be turning the corner at AAA... Look out! Including tonight's game, he's had an even 50 PA since June 1st. In those 50 PA he's struck out only 12 times, drawn 12 walks (24%), and hit .429/.540/.629!

 

After an initial adjustment period (something we've seen from Rooker at every level), he's been putting up good numbers for almost 2 months now:

 

.323/.447/.559 in 114 plate appearances. 15% walk rate, but still carrying a 35% strikeout rate over that stretch. The strikeout rate has been dropping as the season goes along though, so that's positive.

 

His BABIP is off the charts at .532, so there's some regression coming in there. But otherwise his stat line looks like a Sano 2.0. I'm not sure the TD forums could handle a lineup with TWO Sanos in it...

    • 70charger, Dman, d-mac and 1 other like this
When is Ramon Borrego going to let Ben Rortvedt actually catch? He's arguably the best catching prospect in the system but has only caught once in last 8-9 games. Being DH is almost like not being in the game, some players need to actually be in the game defensively to hit well. I think Ben is like that. He has thrown out 16 of 26, none of the other catcher's are even close to that. Plus he's a pitchers catcher; frames well, blocks well, calls pitches well...and keeps teams from thinking about stealing. Jeffers is more of a DH type then Rortvedt down the road.
    • rdehring likes this
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terrydactyls1947
Jun 12 2019 08:05 AM

When is Ramon Borrego going to let Ben Rortvedt actually catch? He's arguably the best catching prospect in the system but has only caught once in last 8-9 games. Being DH is almost like not being in the game, some players need to actually be in the game defensively to hit well. I think Ben is like that. He has thrown out 16 of 26, none of the other catcher's are even close to that. Plus he's a pitchers catcher; frames well, blocks well, calls pitches well...and keeps teams from thinking about stealing. Jeffers is more of a DH type then Rortvedt down the road.


Maybe Jeffers is being showcased as a possible trade chip?

 

When is Ramon Borrego going to let Ben Rortvedt actually catch? He's arguably the best catching prospect in the system but has only caught once in last 8-9 games. Being DH is almost like not being in the game, some players need to actually be in the game defensively to hit well. I think Ben is like that. He has thrown out 16 of 26, none of the other catcher's are even close to that. Plus he's a pitchers catcher; frames well, blocks well, calls pitches well...and keeps teams from thinking about stealing. Jeffers is more of a DH type then Rortvedt down the road.

 

Rortvedt's been hitting well enough since his promotion but it is a little concerning for him not to be catching, unless he's got a bit of a nagging injury he's working through. That said, Jeffers is not the issue, because they're playing on different clubs...

 

Hopefully this is when we see Royce Lewis go on a tear.

 

Rooker is on a great run. He seems to have made the adjustments he needs to be successful at AAA. We really shouldn't be surprised; he was a great hitter in the SEC, at Rookie Ball, was good enough to skip low A and club the snot out of the ball at Ft. Myers...really the only hiccup was at AA and it's not like he was bad last year, just wasn't elite. But the power performance is back to where we thought he'd be, the BA is back to where he'd been in other minor league stops, and he's starting to draw walks in a way that makes him very dangerous.

 

Rooker is an asset and is looking like a guy who will either be a contributor next year or a worthy trade asset this year.

    • birdwatcher, Dman and rdehring like this
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puckstopper1
Jun 12 2019 09:36 AM

Cody states: "On the mound, Devin Smeltzer went five strong innings, striking out seven and walking one. He allowed three runs, all of which came off two home runs."

 

Sorry, but I'm not sure I agree with the "strong" qualifier...

Added video:

    • luckylager and rdehring like this

 

Maybe Jeffers is being showcased as a possible trade chip?

 

OK, I think the lone thing I don't like about the Twins being potential BUYERS this next month is the fact that any time a minor leaguer has a good game so many seem to want to make them a "trade chip." They're all trade chips... but I just hate the phrase... 

 

Maybe Jeffers is playing great and putting his name in the 2020 Twins catching plans?

    • Danchat and rdehring like this

 

Astudillo wouldn't be in Rochester if he was always 8-11. How many hits were by swinging at balls in the zone? That is probably what will get him another shot. That, or one of the catchers going on the IL.

 

The two HR highlights I've seen were pretty much right down the middle.I think the bigger question is how much is he swinging at stuff outside the zone.MLB pitchers just threw him progressively worse and worse pitches and he never stopped swinging at them.Hopefully he was laying off of pitches outside the zone before those homers, if AAA pitchers are just throwing him more stuff in the zone then I'm not sure how much work he's getting on the thing he needs to improve most.

 

As a third catcher he's still a pretty great asset to have though.

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mendozaline
Jun 12 2019 10:27 AM

 

The boxes have Lewis 2/9 with 4 strikeouts and the homer, a bit different than the summary, which is 3/8. Plus, he finishes game 1 hitting .222, and then he goes 1/5 in game 2, and raises his average to .228. That is some fuzzy math.

Noticed this too and then realized it's an old box score. Looks like it's from 5/28.

    • h2oface likes this
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Halsey Hall
Jun 12 2019 10:29 AM
Empty stadium to see Miracle win.
    • scottz likes this
A good day for the system and more and more guys are progressing and developing.

Is it crazy that the highlight for me is a couple good IP from Moya and Romero at Rochester?
    • rdehring likes this

 

OK, I think the lone thing I don't like about the Twins being potential BUYERS this next month is the fact that any time a minor leaguer has a good game so many seem to want to make them a "trade chip." They're all trade chips... but I just hate the phrase... 

 

Maybe Jeffers is playing great and putting his name in the 2020 Twins catching plans?

So, you're saying the Twins should look to trade Rortvedt?

    • 70charger likes this
Seeing who the losing pitcher was in the Fort Myers tweet about the game I just have to....You pitch Junk, you get junk....