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Twins Minor League Report (8/14): Prospects in Pensacola

It was a good night for the Twins top four prospects, each of who plays for Pensacola. Royce Lewis, Alex Kirilloff and Trevor Larnach combined to go 8-for-14 with four runs and three RBIs, and Brusdar Graterol recorded the first save of his professional career.
Image courtesy of Seth Stohs, Twins Daily (photos of Trevor Larnach, Royce Lewis, Alex Kirilloff)
Find out everything that happened happened in the Twins system on Wednesday, starting with the transactions of the day.

TRANSACTIONS
  • RHP Ryan Eades was DFAd by the Twins and claimed by the Baltimore Orioles.
  • RHP DJ Baxendale was activated by the Red Wings, and RHP Cody Stashak returned from the Twins.
  • C Ben Rortvedt was placed on the Pensacola injured list. C/1B Taylor Grzelakowski returned to the Blue Wahoos from Ft. Myers.
  • RHP Jose Martinez was activated from the IL. RHP Alex Schick went on the IL with a hamstring injury.
RED WINGS REPORT
Rochester 3, Indianapolis 5
Box Score

Griffin Jax made his second start for the Red Wings. He gave up five runs (three earned) on seven hits in four innings. He gave up runs in three of the four innings he pitched. He did not walk or strike out anyone.

Preston Guilmet and Ryan O’Rourke each tossed two scoreless innings. Guilmet gave up two hits, walked one and struck out three. O’Rourke gave up one hit and struck out three.

Wynston Sawyer returned and led the offense. He went 4-for-4 in the game. Zander Wiel hit his 21st home run of the season in the ninth inning, but the rally came up short.

BLUE WAHOOS BITES
Pensacola 9, Chattanooga 7
Box Score

Pensacola put up big, crooked numbers in two of the innings and held on when the Lookouts had one big inning.

Alex Kirilloff led the way. He went 3-for-5 and hit his eighth home run in the first inning to put the Wahoos on the scoreboard. He also stole his sixth base. Trevor Larnach went 3-for-4. Royce Lewis went 2-for-5 and stole his third base. Jimmy Kerrigan was 2-for-5 and stole his 13th base. Caleb Hamilton was 1-for-2 with two walks.



Lefty Bryan Sammons started and gave up two runs on six hits over the first six innings. He walked two and struck out five batters. Tom Hackimer started the seventh inning. He recorded just one out and was charged with four runs on two hits and two walks. Jorge Alcala came on and gave up one run on two hits and a walk in 1 1/3 innings. Brusdar Graterol came on and got the final out of the eighth inning. He walked the leadoff batter in the ninth inning, but picked him off. He then walked a second batter before getting the three outs. It was the first save of Graterol’s professional career.



Seth Aside (because I get asked a lot): I have no doubt that Brusdar Graterol will be called up on the last day of August, if not sooner, assuming he remains healthy.

MIRACLE MATTERS
Ft. Myers 2, St. Lucie 1
Box Score

The Miracle put together a well-pitched game, and a couple of Florida State League “Firsts” helped them to the win.

Tyler Watson started and gave up just one run on six hits over six innings. He walked two and struck out six. Johan Quezada came in and got out outs. Moises Gomez got the final five outs of the game, four on strikeouts.

The Miracle got on the board in the third inning. Jacob Pearson knocked his first home run for the Miracle. He went 3-for-4 in the game and also stole his sixth base. In the seventh inning, Yeltsin Encarnacion crushed his first Miracle home run, and it proved to be the game-winner.

KERNELS NUGGETS
Cedar Rapids 2, Wisconsin 3
Box Score

The Kernels fell behind early, but runs in the eighth and ninth innings tied the score. However, they fell on an infield hit in the bottom of the ninth.

In the eighth inning, a Wander Javier single scored Daniel Ozoria. Then in the top of the ninth inning, Trevor Casanova lofted a fly ball deep enough to score Spencer Steer with the tying run.

Ozoria led the offense. He went 2-for-2 and was hit by a pitch. He stole his 10th and 11th bases.

Kody Funderburk started for the Kernels. The left-hander started with four scoreless innings before giving up two runs in the fifth frame. In his 4 2/3 innings, he gave up the two runs on four hits and three walks. He struck out five. Jose Martinez gave up two hits but no runs over the next 1 1/3 innings. He struck out two. Dylan Thomas tossed two scoreless innings. Nate Hadley came in for the ninth inning, but with two outs, he gave up an infield single that scored the winning run.

E-TWINS E-NOTES
E-Twins
Box Score

No Game Scheduled.

GCL TWINS TAKES
GCL Twins, GCL Braves
Box Score

The GCL Twins were postponed by rain… again. The two teams are scheduled to play two games on Thursday.

TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY

Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day - Tyler Watson, Ft. Myers Miracle
Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Alex Kirilloff, Pensacola Blue Wahoos

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

#1 - Royce Lewis (Pensacola) - 2-5, R, K, SB(3)
#2 - Alex Kirilloff (Pensacola) - 3-5, HR(8), 2 R, 2 RBI, K, SB(6)
#3 - Brusdar Graterol (Pensacola) - 1.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 0 K (13 pitches, 5 strikes)
#4 - Trevor Larnach (Pensacola) - 3-4, R, RBI, K, SF
#5 - Wander Javier (Cedar Rapids) - 1-3, BB, RBI, K
#13 - Ryan Jeffers (Pensacola) - 0-4, BB, R, 2 K
#18 - Jorge Alcala (Pensacola) - 1.1 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 1 K (25 pitches, 17 strikes)
#19 - Misael Urbina (DSL Twins) - 2-5, 3B(5), R, RBI, K, CS

THURSDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS
Rochester @ Indianapolis (6:05 CST) - LHP Charlie Barnes (0-0, 8.31 ERA)
Chattanooga @ Pensacola (6:35 CST) - RHP Edwar Colina (3-0, 2.52 ERA)
St. Lucie @ Ft. Myers (6:00 CST) - RHP Jordan Balazovic (6-3, 2.76 ERA)
Cedar Rapids @ Wisconsin (7:05 CST) - RHP Luis Rijo (4-7, 2.84 ERA)
Elizabethton @ Danville (5:30 CST) - RHP Sawyer Gipson-Long (0-1, 5.65 ERA)
GCL Twins @ GCL Braves (DH @ 9:00 CST) - TBD, TBD

Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss the Wednesday games or any other minor league topics you would like.

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17 Comments

Will the Twins want Graterol to get a stop at Rochester before he gets called up to the Twins?

 

Will the Twins want Graterol to get a stop at Rochester before he gets called up to the Twins?

No need - they just need his heater!

 

    • Monkeypaws, Tomj14 and MNT1996 like this

So nice to see so many prospects having a good day on the same day! We need that to offset the worry that is inherent in being a Twins fan.

    • NapoleonComplex likes this
Not really concerned about whether or not Gratrol is up in September or not.

It’s looking like we may be the second wildcard by that point. As a fan, I’m a little miffed about it. This Graterol “plan” is just insulting. It’ll just be pointed to in the press conferences after the season as evidence of going all-in. They should’ve made some real moves while they had the chance (namely, during the off-season).

Additionally, the way the Twins entire pitching staff is going/has gone down in flames, do we really want our top pitching prospect in that atmosphere working with those coaches? Is here anyone left who thinks the major league staff is highly competent (relative to other playoff clubs)?
    • SF Twins Fan likes this

 

Will the Twins want Graterol to get a stop at Rochester before he gets called up to the Twins?

 

Nope. I don't see any need for it. Just needs to get some innings under his belt, throw strikes and stay healthy.

    • glunn likes this
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Cast of Thousands
Aug 15 2019 07:30 AM

 

Nope. I don't see any need for it. Just needs to get some innings under his belt, throw strikes and stay healthy.

13 pitches, 5 strikes.  Yikes.  Gonna have to do better than that to see action with the big league club.

    • jkcarew and EPEZRider like this

 

Not really concerned about whether or not Gratrol is up in September or not.

It’s looking like we may be the second wildcard by that point. As a fan, I’m a little miffed about it. This Graterol “plan” is just insulting. It’ll just be pointed to in the press conferences after the season as evidence of going all-in. They should’ve made some real moves while they had the chance (namely, during the off-season).

Additionally, the way the Twins entire pitching staff is going/has gone down in flames, do we really want our top pitching prospect in that atmosphere working with those coaches? Is here anyone left who thinks the major league staff is highly competent (relative to other playoff clubs)?

 

Pretty sure there is no tie between what was done in July (trade deadline) and Graterol (potentially) coming up. And yes, I want the Twins to have their best pitchers pitching down the stretch, even if this one is 20. I'm not as high on Wes Johnson as seemingly most, but I am completely fine with Graterol working with Johnson and Hefner. 

    • Danchat, JW24, mikelink45 and 1 other like this

Not really concerned about whether or not Gratrol is up in September or not.
It’s looking like we may be the second wildcard by that point. As a fan, I’m a little miffed about it. This Graterol “plan” is just insulting. It’ll just be pointed to in the press conferences after the season as evidence of going all-in. They should’ve made some real moves while they had the chance (namely, during the off-season).
Additionally, the way the Twins entire pitching staff is going/has gone down in flames, do we really want our top pitching prospect in that atmosphere working with those coaches? Is here anyone left who thinks the major league staff is highly competent (relative to other playoff clubs)?


The Twins ERA is 8th best in the majors. And I’m pretty sure we don’t have the 8th most talented pitching staff. So yes I do believe that the pitching coaches are competent.
    • TNTwinsFan, Jaykay, PDX Twin and 4 others like this

Nice day for Lewis, Kirilloff, and Larnach. Hope all three finish the year strong and healthy at AA and go into next year pushing to make the big club. (my way too early prediction: none of them make the team out of spring training, but all see time with the club in 2020, with Kirilloff hitting his way on to the team first and sticking the fastest.)

 

I think all three are going to be in good shape if they stay healthy and can get all the AA ABs they can handle.

    • Tomj14 likes this

 

The Twins ERA is 8th best in the majors. And I’m pretty sure we don’t have the 8th most talented pitching staff. So yes I do believe that the pitching coaches are competent.

agree to disagree,

I think Berrios, Gibson, Ordo, Pineda and I hate to say Perez, hold up against all but a couple of starting staffs in the majors as far a talent and for that matter success this year.

You could be correct on the bullpen, but again 4 of those guys have been DFA'd.

Now I am not willing to say they should be fired but I think the jury is still out.

(they looked like magicians the first half and impostures the second)

 

 

Pretty sure there is no tie between what was done in July (trade deadline) and Graterol (potentially) coming up. And yes, I want the Twins to have their best pitchers pitching down the stretch, even if this one is 20. I'm not as high on Wes Johnson as seemingly most, but I am completely fine with Graterol working with Johnson and Hefner. 

You could say the "tie" was that he was still in the system after the July deadline?Because he isn't coming up if he was used to help the rotation and bullpen in a trade.

 

It seems like many championship teams get some key performances from a new arrival down the stretch, much like the Twins have gotten from Arraez in the middle of the season. The unexpected success boosts team morale and gives everyone a bit more confidence.

 

Now that arrivals cannot come from late waiver deadline trades, they have to be promotions. Could Graterol be the guy who comes up and keys 2-3 wins in the final month?

    • glunn likes this

 

13 pitches, 5 strikes.  Yikes.  Gonna have to do better than that to see action with the big league club.

What confuses me is the low (relatively) K% given he throws 100 mph at the AA level.

 

His K% at Pensacola this year is 24.6%....slightly behind Bryan Sammons. Here are the Twins pitchers with a higher K% at the major-league level this year....Odorizzi, Rogers, May, Duffey, Poppen. Kyle Gibson is at 22.6%. Something isn't adding up quite yet. Lack of high-quality secondary pitch where everyone can sit on the FB? Poor command, tending to throw the FB over the middle of the plate? Some of each? He's 20...got plenty of time to figure that out. But, right now I'm not counting on him to come up and blow people away.

    • glunn, Oldgoat_MN and TNTwinsFan like this

Who gets to the big leagues first, Kirloff or Larnach? The way they've been hitting, especially Larnach, I wouldn't be surprised to see them in Minnesota next spring

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FormerMinnasotan
Aug 15 2019 02:02 PM
So, is this it on grooming Graterol to be a starter? If so that’s disappointing since we don’t really have any real high end arms to join the rotation any time soon. Duran looks terrible against AA hitting and unless he improves a bunch next season it looks like his best role will also be in the bullpen, and Balazovic might be legit however he needs to continue to show improvement not regression in Ft Myers. Other than those two I don’t think we have a top rotational prospect in the minors unless Graterol is still on track as a starter.

Since there is not much minor league baseball in September, sans playoffs, I don't see any development issues with him sitting on the major bench the last month. He could be short relief or he could be in that long relief rotation getting used to the major leagues. Sounds reasoable to me.

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strumdatjaguar
Aug 15 2019 04:13 PM
Crazy to bring up Graterol in a year where the Twins are in the second tier behind the Dodgers and Astros. He just spent time injured. Moreover, his stats would have to be near perfect to justify bringing him up as a 20 year old and immediately putting him in pennant race snd playoff meat grinder. I don’t think this year is a one-off and the Twins should try to handle their roster and prospects to build an even better team to consistently win in future years too This year doesn’t have to be the peak.