Twins Minor League Report (7/4): Free Baseball On 4th Of July
Image courtesy of Seth Stohs, Twins Daily (photo of Jonathan Rodriguez)To find out who the standouts on the Fourth of July were in the minors, and just how many extra innings those teams played, keep reading!
Before we get into the games, there were a few Independence Day transactions.
In Rochester, Justin Haley was sent on a rehab assignment to the Red Wings and made the start in their game. Outfielder Ryan Strausborger was promoted from Chattanooga and Kennys Vargas was optioned to AAA.
The Lookouts also got a pitcher on a rehab assignment, theirs in the form of Zack Jones, who also started the game for Chattanooga though under different circumstances than Haley.
RED WINGS REPORT
Pawtucket 3, Rochester 5
The Red Wings got another multi-hit effort from Zack Granite, who went 2-4 with three RBI. He scored one of those with a single in the second inning, and his fourth inning single scored the other two and gave Rochester a 4-2 lead. They extended their lead to three in the fifth on a wild-pitch that allowed Mitch Garver to scamper home from third.
Justin Haley made the start for the Red Wings and went the first three innings in his first rehab appearance. He allowed a two-run home run in the third and four hits total while striking out three. Nik Turley came on in relief and went the next five innings. He allowed no runs on two hits and a walk, and added three K’s. Jake Reed pitched the ninth inning and picked up his second save for Rochester. He did allow a solo home run for the final score of 5-3, but also struck out the last two hitters of the game. It was Reed’s first run allowed at AAA.
Niko Goodrum scored two runs with a 1-2 day that included a walk. Bengie Gonzalez picked up the other RBI for the Red Wings with a single in the second inning that scored Kennys Vargas.
Tennessee 5, Chattanooga 6 (14 innings)
Chattanooga jumped out to a 5-1 lead after five innings, but weren’t able to keep the Smokies at bay. They scored those five runs thanks to a T.J. White RBI single in the second inning, a Jonathan Rodriguez two-run homer in the fourth, and a two-RBI single off the bat of LaMonte Wade in the fifth.
Starter Kohl Stewart gave up a run in the top of the first after a giving up a one-out double, but that would be it for the Smokies against him. He went five innings, allowing four hits and one walk. He struck out one.
Relievers Matt Tracy and Paul Clemens each threw two innings, but the Smokies also tagged each of them for two runs to tie the game at five in the top of the eighth. Tracy’s runs came on three walks and double while Clemens’ came on four hits including three doubles. Both relievers also struck out two. Randy Rosario took over in the tenth, and went the next three scoreless and perfect innings while picking up two K’s. Luke Bard came on for the thirteenth inning and pitched a one-two-three frame.
Chattanooga had an opportunity in the bottom of the thirteenth as three two-out walks loaded the bases, but Levi Michael grounded out to end the inning.
Bard came back out in the fourteenth and again had a one-two-three inning, striking out the final two hitters of this one. Over his last eleven appearances and 17.2 innings pitched, Bard has allowed just one run on twelve hits and six walks, while striking out 30. #FreeBard
The Lookouts got another bases-loaded opportunity in the fourteenth after a Nick Gordon single and walks to Edgar Corcino and LaMonte Wade with two outs, and this time the day’s hero came through. Designated hitter Rodriguez knocked his fourth hit of the game, a single to score Gordon and walk it off after a long day. Rodriguez finished 4-6 with two runs scored, two doubles, his tenth home run, a walk, and three runs batted in.
Fort Myers 1, Tampa 2 (14 innings)
Fort Myers fell behind 1-0 in the second inning when starter David Fischer gave up a solo home run. He was pretty good otherwise in his four innings however, allowing just one other hit with one strikeout. Michael Theofanopoulos went the next three scoreless innings, allowing just one hit and a walk, with six K’s.
The Miracle tied the game at one in the top of the ninth inning thanks to an RBI single from Mitchell Kranson. His hit scored Jermaine Palacios who had singled to lead off the inning.
Sam Clay came on for Theofanopoulos in the eighth and brought the game into extra innings. He finished four scoreless innings and allowed one hit, walked three and struck out two. Position Player Pitcher Alert: Catcher Kevin Garcia was the next arm brought on to pitch and he made it two plus innings. He had the first two outs of the bottom of the fourteenth, but a solo home run ended the game for Fort Myers.
The Miracle lineup, despite the five extra frames, had just two at-bats in the entire contest with runners in scoring position and went 1-2. They had six singles after nine innings, and added three more singles for nine total hits on the game after fourteen innings. Max Murphy, Palacios and Kranson all had two hits.
Wisconsin 2, Cedar Rapids 1
Cedar Rapids scored the first run of the game in the bottom of the first inning thanks to a sacrifice fly from Lewin Diaz, but that’s all the offense they would push across for the game as this one also turned into a pitcher’s duel.
Eduardo Del Rosario made the start for the Kernels and went seven strong innings. He allowed just one run on a solo home run, three hits total, walked none and struck out six. The game was tied 1-1 when he left after those seven innings, and Max Cordy pitched a scoreless eighth before a leadoff walk in the ninth allowed the Timber Rattlers to manufacture the go-ahead run.
The lineup for Cedar Rapids collected just six hits and was led by Diaz (2-3, RBI) and Ben Rortvedt (2-3, 2B) who each had two. Lean Marrero added a triple in the fifth inning but was left stranded. As a team they were 0-4 with runners in scoring position and left only five men on base.
Princeton 6, Elizabethton 2
Twins Daily’s 2016 Short Season Pitcher of the Year, Huascar Ynoa, made the start for the Twins and went the first five innings. They were of the scoreless variety as he allowed just three hits and a walk while striking out three.
Elizabethton scored the first run of the game in the second inning when Andrew Cosgrove singled in Andrew Bechtold, who had picked up his first double of the year a batter earlier. The Twins made the score 2-0 for their starter in the bottom of the fifth when Jose Miranda led off the inning with his second Appalachian League home run.
Bryan Sammons came on in relief of Ynoa for the sixth inning, and an error led to an unearned run to make the score 2-1. Sammons added a scoreless seventh inning and struck out three in his outing.
In the eighth, Blair Lakso was summoned to keep the lead but it wasn’t meant to be. With one out there was an errant throw on a steal attempt, then a walk, single, wild pitch, two-run double, and RBI single ended his outing with the score 5-2 Princeton. Jared Finkel came on and got the last out of the inning with a K and he finished the game with another frame, but gave up an insurance run in the ninth on three singles.
Down 6-2 in the bottom of the ninth, the Twins did their best to mount a comeback by loading the bases with two-outs for Brent Rooker. Unfortunately his ground ball to third didn’t find a hole and dropped Elizabethton to 8-5 on the season.
Miranda finished his day 2-5 with the home run, Bechtold was 1-3 with a double, a run scored, and walk, and Matt Albanese added a double to lead the offensive effort. As a team they were 2-8 with runners in scoring position and left ten men on base.
GCL TWINS TAKES
GCL Twins 6, GCL Rays 4 (10 innings)
The GCL Twins jumped out to a 2-0 lead after the first inning thanks to a Benjamin Rodriguez triple that scored Akil Baddoo and Victor Tademo who had reached base via a walk and hit by pitch, respectively. They made it 3-0 in the third as Royce Lewis drew a walk to lead off the frame and stole second base before Rodriguez singled him in. In the fifth Rodriguez delivered again with a single to score Alex Robles, who had doubled earlier in the inning.
The Twins would need all those Rodriguez runs batted in as the Rays finally got to the bullpen of the Twins in the eighth inning. Zack Jones had started the game for his first rehab appearance, and stuck out two in the first inning. Jordan Balazovic then came on and went the next five scoreless innings. He allowed three hits and two walks while striking out six. Matt Jones pitched a scoreless seventh inning before running into a heap of trouble after a strike three got away from the catcher and put a runner on. Four more singles and a hit batter scored four runs to tie the game before Austin Bizzle came one and struck out the two hitters he faced to end the threat. Jose Burmudez brought the game into extra innings with two scoreless frames, including the tenth which started with a runner on second base under the new rules.
In the bottom of the tenth, Lewis started on second base for the Twins as he was the last out of the ninth inning. He didn’t have to do much running, as Baddoo launched his first home run of the season in walk-off fashion to give the Twins the 6-4 win and bring on the fireworks.
Despite just six hits as a team, thanks to Rodriguez and Baddoo the Twins made the most of them by getting four of those with runners in scoring position.
TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY
Pitcher of the Day – Eduardo Del Rosario, Cedar Rapids Kernels (7.0IP, ER, 3 H’s, 6 K’s)
Hitter of the Day – Jonathan Rodriguez, Chattanooga Lookouts (GW-single in fourteenth inning. 4-6, 2 R’s, 2 2B’s, HR, BB, 3 RBI)
WEDNESDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS
Pawtucket @ Rochester, Game 1 (3:35PM CST) – RHP Dillon Gee (0-0, 0.00 ERA)
Pawtucket @ Rochester, Game 2 (TBD) - TBD
Tennessee @ Chattanooga (6:15PM CST) - TBD
Fort Myers @ Tampa (6:00PM CST) – RHP Sean Poppen (0-0, -.-- ERA)
Wisconsin @ Cedar Rapids (6:35PM CST) – LHP Evan Sanders (0-1, 11.25 ERA)
Princeton @ Elizabethton (6:00PM CST) – RHP Moises Gomez (0-0, 14.29 ERA)
GCL Twins @ GCL Rays (11:00AM CST) - TBD
Please feel free to ask questions and discuss Tuesday’s games!