Twins Minor League Starting Pitcher Of The Month - July 2017
- Edwar Colina - Elizabethton - 5 GS, 24.2 IP, 1-2, 2.19 ERA, 1.22 WHIP, 20 H, 10 BB, 29 K
- Stephen Gonsalves - Chattanooga - 6 GS, 32.2 IP, 3-0, 3.31 ERA, 1.32 WHIP, 32 H, 11 BB, 36 K
- Brusdar Graterol - GCL/Elizabethton - 5 G, 3 GS, 19.1 IP, 2-0, 2.33 ERA, 1.03 WHIP, 13 H, 7 BB, 23 K.
- David Hurlbut - Rochester - 5 G, 4 GS, 29.2 IP, 3-1, 3.03 ERA, 1.01 WHIP, 29 H, 4 BB, 24 K.
- Griffin Jax - Elizabethton/Cedar Rapids - 4 GS, 26.1 IP, 2-1, 2.39 ERA, 0.99 WHIP, 19 H, 7 BB, 13 K.
- Bryan Sammons - Elizabethton - 5 G, 3 GS, 21.0 IP, 2-0, 1.29 ERA, 0.81 WHIP, 11 H, 6 BB, 25 K.
#6 - Fernando Romero - Chattanooga Lookouts - 6 GS, 3-1, 1.67 ERA, 1.22 WHIP, 27.0 IP, 22 H, 11 BB, 36 K
Romero was the Twins Daily #1 Twins Prospect coming into the season. He’s pitched like it through most of the season. Over the last six starts, he has been limited to five innings per start, and as you can see from the July numbers, he’s been very good. His fastball is consistently 96-99 mph. He’s got a good, sharp slider. His changeup is his pitch that needs work, but reports are that it continues to improve. It will be interesting to see how he is used the rest of this season.
July was a good month for Romero, but he’s been good all year. He’s 11-6 with a 2.60 ERA with 115 strikeouts in 110.2 innings.
#5 - Clark Beeker - Cedar Rapids Kernels - 5 GS, 3-1, 0.84 ERA, 0.78 WHIP, 32.0 IP, 22 H, 3 BB, 23 K
Beeker has been a regular in these monthly reports this season. He was the Twins 33rd-round pick in 2016 out of Davidson. In July, batters hit just .190/.230/.241 (.471) off of him. An ERA under 1.00. A WHIP under 1.00. You can’t ask a starter to do that, but Beeker’s been doing it while still providing a lot of innings. Last week, he tossed a complete game shutout. On the year, Beeker is now 11-3 with a 2.31 ERA and a 0.97 WHIP. He’s got tremendous control, having walked just 14 batters in 113 innings.
#4 - Eduardo Del Rosario - Cedar Rapids/Ft. Myers Miracle - 4 GS, 1-2, 1.33 ERA, 0.74 WHIP, 27.0 IP, 15 H, 5 BB, 17 K
Del Rosario was the Kernels Opening Day starter, and he was their first starter coming back after the All-Star break. At the end of July, he was finally promoted to the Miracle. In his final start of July, his first start with the Miracle, he gave up just an unearned run and one hit over eight innings. For the full month, opponents hit just .165/.232/.275 (.507) against him. He’s not a big guy, but he’s wiry, and throws with a whip-like action. On the season, he is now 7-6 with a 4.39 ERA. He’s got 90 strikeouts in 98.1 innings.
#3 - Tim Melville - Rochester Red Wings - 5 GS, 1-3, 1.89 ERA, 0.99 WHIP, 33.1 IP, 25 H, 8 BB, 28 K
Melville was the Royals fourth-round pick in 2008 out of high school in Missouri. He was very highly-touted, but he struggled right away. He stayed in the Royals organization through the 2014 season. He pitched for Detroit’s AAA affiliate in 2015. He went to the Reds in 2016 and received a three-game, 11 inning big league debut. Following the season, he was not signed by anyone. So he went to the independent Atlanta League where he was a teammate for Twins legend Lew Ford with the Long Island Ducks.
The Twins came calling, and since joining the Red Wings, Melville has been quite good. In nine games (eight starts), he is 3-3 with a 2.72 ERA. In July, batters hit just .205/.263/.279 (.542) off of him. Reports indicate that the still-just-27-year-old is sitting between 93 and 96 with his fastball, and he’s got a good breaking ball too. He might be a guy given an opportunity if the front office doesn’t believe that the AA guys are ready yet this year.
#2- Charlie Barnes - Elizabethton Twins - 6 G, 5 GS, 2-0, 0.37 ERA, 1.03 WHIP, 24.1 IP, 17 H, 8 BB, 26 K
I mean, what can Charlie Barnes possibly do in his second month of pro ball after a debut like this. He gave up two runs in 2.1 innings in his pro debut (which came in June). In his next start, he gave up one run, the only run he gave up in 24.1 innings over the whole month. Opponents hit just .183/.255/.215 (.470) off him. Drafted in the fourth round out of Clemson this year, Barnes was touted as a changeup artist. It was no surprise that he was quickly promoted to Cedar Rapids where he threw four shutout innings to keep the streak going.
And the Twins Minor League Starting Pitcher of the Month is:
Rochester Red Wings - RHP Aaron Slegers - 5 GS, 5-0, 0.99 ERA, 0.83 WHIP, 36.1 IP, 26 H, 4 BB, 22 K
For the second month this season, Aaron Slegers is our choice for Twins Minor League Starting Pitcher of the Month. He was also the choice in May. Slegers made five starts in July and won all five of them. He gave up three runs in the first start. Over the last four starts, he gave up one run in 29.2 innings. Opponents hit just .202/.226/.240 (.466) off of him in July.
The 24-year-old was the Twins fifth-round draft pick in 2014 out of Indiana. He wasn’t protected from the Rule 5 draft which made a lot of people in the organization nervous. When he wasn’t selected, he received an invitation to big league camp. He made a strong impression on the coaches and has taken some of the things he learned and put them to use this season.
His five straight wins in July extends his streak to eight straight starts with a win. In that stretch, he is 8-0 with a 1.73 ERA. Overall on the season, Slegers has made 19 starts. He is 12-4 with a 3.13 ERA and a 1.23 WHIP. In 118 innings, he has walked just 25 and struck out just 85 (6.5 K/9).
Slegers isn’t a flame thrower. Opponents get hits off of him. But what he does is not hurt himself with walks, and he keeps the ball in the yard. His fastball sits in the low 90s, but he’s been known to touch 94 and even 95 at times. He’s got a good pitch mix and knows how to pitch. He should gets an opportunity to make starts for the Twins before season’s end.
Congratulations to our Twins Daily Minor League Starting Pitcher of the Month of July, Rochester starter Aaron Slegers.
Feel free to agree or disagree with the order, if you like. It wasn’t as easy a decision as you might think. There were several solid starters in July, and several really stood out.
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