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Front Page: Can the Twins Become the New Astros? Part 1

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 01:07 PM
After recently reading both Ben Reiter’s Astroball and The MVP Machine by Ben Lindbergh and Travis Shawchik, both highly recommended, I f...
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Front Page: Twins Trade Targets: 4 Potential Starting Pit...

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 12:46 PM
The Minnesota Twins are in store for a starting rotation overhaul this offseason with only Jose Berrios and Martin Perez under contract....
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Front Page: Twins Daily 2019 Award: Pitcher of the Year

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 12:42 PM
For most of the past decade, the Minnesota Twins have had one of the worst pitching staffs in baseball. Pick a meaningful statistic for p...
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Front Page: Handing a Qualifying Offer to Michael Pineda

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 11:25 AM
The Minnesota Twins are going to be looking at filling a starting rotation that has just one guaranteed arm for 2020. A top-tier talent o...
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2019/2020 Twins Minor League Coaching Changes

Twins Minor League Talk Today, 11:15 AM
http://www.startribu...tes/562941602/    According to the Star Tribune, the Rochester Red Wings will have a new coaching staff in 20...
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Twins Minor League Report (6/23): Sands Strong in Return from IL

The Twins ended an up-and-down week with a tough loss in Kansas City. Luckily, there was some good news from down on the pond. Cole Sands came off the injured list and pitched very well. Nick Gordon added another multi-hit game and this time they were both for extra bases. Cedar Rapids found themselves in a back-and-forth contest, but would they have enough to come back in the end?

All that and more in this edition of the Twins Daily Minor League Report.
Image courtesy of Seth Stohs, Twins Daily (Cole Sands)
RHP Cole Sands reinstated from the IL with Fort Myers.

The Twins announced their weekly Hitter and Pitcher of the Week:
  • Hitter of the Week: Brent Rooker, Rochester
Rooker played seven games for the Red Wings this week, hitting .429 (9-for-21) with two doubles, three home runs, 10 RBIs, four walks and a 1.488 OPS. He was drafted 35th overall by the Twins in the 2017 first-year player draft.
  • Pitcher of the Week: Ryley Widell, Elizabethton
Widell pitched in one game this week, Wednesday against Bluefield, allowing just two runs (1 earned) on two hits, with no walks and six strikeouts in 4.0 innings. He was drafted by the Twins in the seventh round of the 2017 Draft.

Rochester 1, Toledo 7
Box Score
Rochester fell into an early hole as Lewis Thorpe allowed three first inning runs. He was able to settle in from there and put up zeros in the second, third and fourth innings. In the fifth, he ran into a little more trouble and he couldn’t finish the frame. Overall, he allowed five runs on eight hits with six strikeouts and two walks.

Jake Reed took over for Thorpe and finished out the fifth. He ran into his own trouble in the sixth as he allowed a walk, a two-out single, and a wild pitch to see a runner score. Reed has allowed runs in his last two appearances and three of his last five. Preston Guilmet pitched the final two innings and allowed one run on four hits.

Offensively, Nick Gordon continued his recent hot streak with another multi-hit game. This time both hits were doubles. Over his last 10 games, he has four multi-hit games and six games where he has reached base at least two times. Drew Maggi went 2-for-5 with his ninth double. Brent Rooker didn’t get a hit, but he reached base twice on walks.

Pensacola 1, Jacksonville 7
Box Score
Adalberto Mejia continued to work his way back to the Twins as the Blue Wahoos used him as an opener in this contest. He pitched a hitless first inning and struck out two. Jorge Alcala failed to get through five innings for the second time in his last three appearances. In 4 2/3 innings, he allowed seven earned runs on eight hits with six strikeouts and two walks. In his Double-A debut, Hector Lujan finished the game strong. He collected the final seven outs and didn’t allow a run. He struck out two and didn’t walk any.

Pensacola’s hits were few and far between. As a club, they could only manage three hits and two of the three came in the ninth when the game was out of reach. Travis Blankenhorn started the frame with a single and moved to second on a ground out. With two-outs, Lewin Diaz cracked a double to bring in Blankenhorn. Aaron Whitefield went 1-for-3 and had the only other hit for the Blue Wahoos.

Ft. Myers 4, Jupiter 0
Box Score
Fort Myers road a strong start from Cole Sands in his first appearance since coming off the injured list. Sands didn’t allow a hit in five shutout innings while striking out six. He allowed only one base runner via walk. He faced the minimum and made it through five in just 60 pitches. It was his first High-A win. Johan Quezada and Derek Molina kept the shutout rolling. Each pitcher tossed two scoreless frames and they both struck out three batters.

Ryan Costello got the scoring start in the second with his sixth home run of the season. In the fourth inning, Michael Helman increased the lead to 2-0 with an RBI single. Trevor Larnach added his league-leading 25th double in the fifth as he pushed the lead to 3-0. Ryan Jeffers followed Larnach with an RBI single.

Cedar Rapids 8, Peoria 6
Box Score
Cedar Rapids need four ninth-inning runs to put themselves in position to win. Both teams had multiple two-runs leads throughout the course of this back-and-forth contest. Andrew Cabezas pitched into the sixth inning for the first time since May 15. He held Peoria to two runs (one earned) on six hits with six strikeouts and no walks. He would allow the only earned run of the day as the other five runs were unearned.

Trailing 2-0 in the fourth, Gilberto Celestino and Gabe Snyder used back-to-back doubles to score the Kernels first run. With two outs, Jacob Pearson singled to tie the game. Cedar Rapids took their first lead in the seventh after three straight hits and a sacrifice fly put them up 4-2.

With one out in the eighth inning, Petru Balan allowed a one-out single and then walked a batter. After a mound visit, he was able to get the second out on a fly out to center. However, Yeltsin Encarnacion committed a fielding error that loaded the bases. Balan would be pulled for Carlos Suniaga who gave up a grand slam that put Peoria up 6-4.

Encarnacion would be redeemed in the ninth. His two-out triple scored the first run of a big inning. He later scored on a wild pitch. After walks from Celestino and Snyder, Ben Rodriguez collected his ninth double to score both runs and cap a terrific comeback.

Elizabethton 12, Kingsport 6
Box Score
Elizabethton exploded for 12 runs on 14 hits including two innings where the team scored four runs or more. What might be more impressive is the fact the club collected 12 walks with five batters having multiple free passes. Every batter in the line-up had at least one hit and seven batters reached base multiple times.

Max Smith reached base five times including three hits, the most on the team. Albee Weiss and Tyler Webb had the team’s only extra-base hits as they both collected doubles. Spencer Steer and Seth Gray both reached base four times including three walks each.

Elizabethton pitchers didn’t have to do much to keep this game in check. Cody Laweryson, the organization’s 14th-round pick this year, made his professional debut. He tossed two scoreless innings and struck out three. Erik Cha picked up his second victory in as many appearances after allowing one run on three hits over two innings.

TD Pitcher of the Day- Cole Sands, Fort Myers (5.0 IP, 0 ER, 0 H, 6 K, BB)
TD Hitter of the Day- Max Smith, Elizabethton (3-for-4, 2 R, 2 RBI, 2 BB)

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

#1 - Royce Lewis (Ft. Myers) – 1-4, R, K
#2 - Alex Kirilloff (Pensacola) – 0-4, 2 K
#3 - Brusdar Graterol (Pensacola) – Injured list
#4 - Trevor Larnach (Ft. Myers) – 1-4, 2B, R, RBI, K
#5 - Wander Javier (Cedar Rapids) – Did not play
#6 - Brent Rooker (Rochester) – 0-2, 2 BB
#7 - Jhoan Duran (Ft. Myers) – Did not pitch
#8 - Lewis Thorpe (Rochester) – 4.1 IP, 5 ER, 8 H, 6 K, 2 BB
#9 - Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) – Did not pitch
#10 - Akil Baddoo (Ft. Myers) – Tommy John surgery, out for the year
#11 - Nick Gordon (Rochester) – 2-5, 2 2B, R, 3 K
#12 - Stephen Gonsalves (Rochester) – Injured list
#13 - Ryan Jeffers (Ft. Myers) – 2-4, R, RBI
#14 - Ben Rortvedt (Pensacola) – 0-4, K
#15 - Yunior Severino (Cedar Rapids) – Injured List
#16 - Gilberto Celestino (Cedar Rapids) – 1-4, RBI, BB, K
#17 - Zack Littell (Minnesota) – 1.0 IP, 0 ER, H
#18 - LaMonte Wade (Rochester) – 1-3, 2B, RBI, BB, K
#19 - Jorge Alcala (Pensacola) – 4.2 IP, 7 ER, 8 H, 6 K, 2 BB
#20 - Jose Miranda (Ft. Myers) – Temporary inactive list

Rochester vs. Scranton/WB (6:05 CST) – RHP Sean Poppen (6-3, 2.97 ERA)
Pensacola @ Jacksonville (6:05 CST) – RHP Griffin Jax (2-2, 1.92 ERA)
Fort Myers – Scheduled Off-Day
Cedar Rapids – Scheduled Off-Day

Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss Sunday’s games.

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I'm still hoping for Alcala to be moved to the bullpen. I think that's where he's going to make his dough in the majors.

    • milldam, Dman, ChrisKnutson and 1 other like this
Jun 24 2019 04:09 AM

when does the GCL start?

Got a question.Are Rooker and Gordon maximizing their value at a time when the Twins need to become active in the trade market?


I was so hopeful that Thorpe would settle in and have a great year.Still lot of time left in the season, but he isn't trending in the right direction.With his ability to strike out lots of hitters, is it possible he could become a shut down reliever?His arm seems to talented to not get a valuable piece for a future Twins pitching staff.


Great start by Sands.I know he was shut down last year after being over used in college.Was his recent injury something to be concerned about long term?  ecurring?Or 

    • blindeke likes this

when does the GCL start?

In 86 minutes. :).

    • glunn and EPEZRider like this
Jun 24 2019 09:00 AM
That's the way one should come off the IL. Amazing really.
Jun 24 2019 10:13 AM

In 86 minutes. :).



Bottom of the second, 0-0, GCL Twins are hitless through their two innings. This has been your Circus Boy game thread Update. :)

    • glunn likes this

Looking like a lost season for Gonsalves. That's too bad.


Gordon doing a nice job to regain some of his prospect luster this season. If Gordon wasn't dinged up to start the year and if Arraez hadn't knocked the cover off the ball when given the opportunity in MLB I think we might have seen him get a shot in the majors this year. Now his fate is a bit more up in the air, but you have to think he's become more interesting as a trade prospect.

    • glunn likes this
I’m not ready to say Gordon is back on track. He is known to fall off a cliff in the second half. If he can put together a reasonable second half, I’ll pay some attention.

It looks like Lewin Diaz is ready to reappear in the prospect rankings. Pretty good story.