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From MinnCentric


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Twins Minor League Starting Pitcher of the Month - August

Hopefully everyone is enjoying their Labor Day weekend!! The Twins certainly enjoyed their doubleheader sweep in Kansas City on Saturday against the Royals. I know I look forward to the first start of Esmerling Vasquez’s big league career this afternoon.
[PRBREAK][/PRBREAK]
Yesterday, I posted the August relief pitchers of the month, and today, I’m back to present for you the August Twins minor league starting pitchers of the month. There are a couple of new names, but it’s been nice to see some names show up on these monthly reports consistently.

Below, you will find my rankings of the Top 5 starting pitchers in the Twins farm system in the month of August, along with a couple of honorable mentions. Be sure to vote for your choice and discuss the nominees in the comments.

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Honorable Mention:

  • Beloit – LHP Taylor Rogers – 7 G, 3 GS, 2-1, 2.30 ERA, 1.17 WHIP, 27.1 IP, 26 H, 6 BB, 31 K
  • New Britain – RHP BJ Hermsen – 3-1, 3.29 ERA, 1.30 WHIP, 6 GS, 38.1 IP, 43 H, 7 BB, 20 K

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Number 5 – Beloit – LHP David Hurlbut - 4 GS, 1-1, 2.88 ERA, 0.92 WHIP, 25.0 IP, 21 H, 2 BB, 18 K


Hurlbut was the pitcher of the month just a couple of months ago and has quietly put together a very solid season for the Snappers. The lefty doesn’t throw hard, but as you can see, he doesn’t walk many at all.


Number 4 – GCL Twins – LHP Randy Rosario – 4 G, 3 GS, 1-1, 0.50 ERA, 0.94 WHIP, 18.0 IP, 9 H, 8 BB, 19 K


Another lefty, Rosario is young and has a long way to go in terms of development, but he is certainly intriguing. He already throws consistently at 92-93 mph and touches 94 and 95. He can strikeout batters now, but as is normal with many hard-throwing young pitchers, he has to work on finding the strike zone more consistently.


Number 3 – Rochester – RHP Esmerling Vasquez – 5 G, 3 GS, 4-1, 0.88 ERA, 0.98 WHIP, 30.2 IP, 17 H, 13 BB, 31 K


Vasquez has split his time between the bullpen and the rotation this season in Rochester. Although he made just three starts in August, one of his relief appearances came following a PJ Walters rehab start. Vasquez came in with two outs in the first inning and left after getting an out in the 9th, his longest outing of the season. He throws hard. Control has always been his downfall, but he’s been much better when starting.


Number 2 – Rochester – Liam Hendriks - 4 GS, 2-1, 1.61 ERA, 0.89 WHIP, 28.0 IP, 18 H, 7 BB, 21 K


Hendriks continued his mastery of AAA hitters in August. Maybe he should be higher on this list if we include his complete game, 1-0 loss to Felix Hernandez and the Seattle Mariners.


And the Twins Minor League Starting Pitcher of the Month is:

GCL/Elizabethton Twins – RHP JO (Jose) Berrios - 4 GS, 2-0, 1.62 ERA, 0.78 WHIP, 16.2 IP, 11 H, 2 BB, 28 K


The numbers are pretty similar to Hendriks’ numbers in August, but Berrios walked less and struckout more, giving him the edge for pitcher of the month. The Twins first supplemental first round selection this June has been remarkable in every one of his appearances. He made one start for the GCL Twins in August before he and top pick Byron Buxton were promoted to Elizabethton where he has been even better. Add to the above numbers his Game 1 playoff win and his numbers are even better. He threw six shutout innings against Danville, allowing one hit, walking one and hitting one while striking out seven. And, if the E-Twins can get a Game 2 win against Burlington tonight, it will be Berrios starting Game 3 for the Appalachian League championship.


What do you think? There have been a few months where I’ve only mentioned four starters instead of five. This month, I referenced seven pitchers. The relievers have been pretty strong all year, and wait until tomorrow when you see the impressive August output from many hitters, including some of the top prospects.

Attached Image: Jose_BerriosCard.jpg


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