Twins Minor League Starting Pitcher Of The Month: June 2016
- LHP Andrew Albers (Rochester) - 6 GS, 3-1, 2.63 ERA, 1.22 WHIP, 37.2 IP, 42 H, 4 BB, 25 K
- LHP Logan Darnell (Rochester) - 6 GS, 3-2, 2.84 ERA, 1.29 WHIP, 38.0 IP, 37 H, 12 BB, 24 K
- RHP DJ Baxendale (Chattanooga/Rochester) - 5 G/3GS, 1-2, 2.60 ERA, 1.27 WHIP, 17.1 IP, 17 H, 5 BB, 12 K
Number 5 – Chattanooga – RHP Ryan Eades - 5 GS, 3-1, 2.89 ERA, 0.96 WHIP, 28.0 IP, 20 H, 7 BB, 19 K
If not for his fourth start of the month of June, Eades would likely be much higher on this list. The right-hander gave up seven earned runs in his June 24th start and yet still is in this top five. In his first three starts of the month (coming back from the DL), he worked 17 innings and gave up just one run. He ended the month with a quality start in which he gave up just one run over six innings in his final start. The former 2nd-round pick has been inconsistent at times this year, but he is also often able to be more consistent with his pitches from inning to inning. He won’t turn 25 until December, so he has plenty of time to keep working on these things.
Number 4 - Chattanooga – RHP Aaron Slegers - 5 GS, 4-0, 2.16 ERA, 1.02 WHIP, 33.1 IP, 22 H, 12 BB, 25 K
Aaron Slegers rarely gets placed on prospect lists, but he just quietly has been very productive throughout his pro career. He throws a lot of strikes and generally doesn’t walk many. In fact his June walk rate is as high as you will see it. But Slegers had a strong month, not only with that perfect record but with a low ERA and a low WHIP. He doesn’t strike out a ton, but he can get one when he needs one. He should spend the rest of the season in Chattanooga before jumping up to Rochester in 2017.
Number 3 – Cedar Rapids/Ft. Myers – RHP Fernando Romero - 5 GS, 3-1, 2.70 ERA, 0.97 WHIP, 30.0 IP, 25 H, 4 BB, 26 K
Romero missed two seasons after having Tommy John surgery in 2014 and then knee surgery in 2015. Seeing him this spring, his arm sure looked strong, but the team wisely kept him in extended spring training for about a month. He made just five starts in Cedar Rapids before a mid-month promotion to Ft. Myers where he has continued to pitch well. Still just 21, Romero is a flame-thrower. He often hits 98 mph with his fastball. He has a good breaking ball too and an improving change-up. His prospect status nationally should rise quickly this offseason. He came in at #7 in Seth’s Midseason Prospect Rankings.
Number 2 - Rochester – RHP Jose Berrios - 5 GS, 4-1, 2.02 ERA, 0.73 WHIP, 35.2 IP, 16 H, 10 BB, 38 K
It took him awhile, but at this point, JO Berrios is ready for the big leagues, or at least he is ready for another opportunity in the big leagues. While he still doesn’t quite have his control, he has shown much better command. In reality, his stuff is also very good as shown by the miniscule number of hits he has allowed. Berrios gave up five earned runs in his second start of the month. Since then, he has put together four straight terrific starts. He should spend the second half of the season with the big league club.
And the Twins Minor League Starting Pitcher of the Month is:
Ft. Myers – RHP Felix Jorge - 5 GS, 5-0, 1.59 ERA, 0.91 WHIP, 34.0 IP, 29 H, 2 BB, 31 K
For the third straight month, a starting pitcher from the Ft. Myers Miracle is the winner of the monthly starting pitching award. In April, it was Stephen Gonsalves, and Tyler Jay was our choice for the award in May. Meanwhile, Felix Jorge has arguably been the best and most consistent starter the Miracle have had all year. Following his seven shutout innings on Tuesday night he is now 9-3 with a remarkable 1.55 ERA.
He has wins in each of his last seven starts during which he has given up six runs in 48 innings. Only once in his 14 starts this season has he failed to complete six innings. He has completed five or more innings in all 14 starts. That continues a trend that he started last year in Cedar Rapids when he completed six innings in 20 of his 22 starts and completed five innings in each of his starts.
The 6-2, 170 pound right-hander sits in the low-90s, hitting 94 at times. He has three good pitches and mixes speeds well. He attacks the strike zone, always keeping his walk rate very low. He works fast and gets ground balls. He controls the game. While he may not strike out a lot, there are people who believe that as he continues to grow, he could add more missed bats as well.
Jorge has been terrific all year, but he has been at his best the last seven starts. In June, he also started the Florida State League All-Star Game and worked a scoreless inning.
Jorge’s stock as a prospect has risen significantly over the past year-and-a-half. I had him in my top ten Twins prospects at mid season and he is likely to continue to rise. Will he get that call to Chattanooga soon? He should. He was not added to the 40-man roster last offseason. There is no way he isn’t added this coming offseason.
While we chose Felix Jorge as our starting pitcher of the month for June, there were some other strong candidates. Discuss below. Feel free to agree or disagree with the order, if you like, but congratulations these individuals on a terrific month.
Congratulations to the June Twins Daily Minor League Starting Pitcher of the Month for 2016, Felix Jorge.
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