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  • Twins Minor League Report: Berrios Debuts

    It's April 22 and we're experiencing another snowstorm. The Twins were postponed and will play a split-doubleheader tomorrow (hopefully; I wouldn't bet on it). And despite having a day-off Wednesday, there won't be a game because the Marlins have 20 straight days with games beginning Thursday, so they can't play Wednesday.

    Only three affiliates were in action today, let's see how they did:


    Cedar Rapids Kernels 8, Burlington Bees 4
    Box Score

    Jose Berrios made his highly-anticipated full-season debut tonight. Berrios joined the team after spending some time stretching out in Fort Myers after being used sparingly by the Puerto Rican National Team in the World Baseball Classic (where he struck out Robinson Cano). Had Berrios been on the Opening Day roster, he would have been the 9th-youngest player (and 4th-youngest pitcher) in the Midwest League.

    He had a solid performance, but appeared to have some nerves early. He gave up runs in each of his first two innings and misplayed a bunt (that was generously ruled a hit) before settling down. He had a final line of five innings, seven hits, two walks, five strikeouts and the aforementioned runs. Reports from the field had him sitting in the low-90s, but touching as high as 96.

    JD Williams led the offense with two doubles and a home run. He also drew a walk, scored twice and drove in three runs. Oh, and he stole a base too. He calls himself part of the "Soul Patrol" with Byron Buxton and Niko Goodrum, but he might be rejoining Miguel Sano and Eddie Rosario if he keeps it up.

    Adam Walker had a triple and showed off his big-time power with a long home run.

    Byron Buxton went 1-for-4 with a stolen base. When he was 0-for-3 tonight, his average dropped to .392. The single got it back up to .404.

    Manuel Soliman walked three in two scoreless innings. Chris Mazza had to be relieved after giving up two runs and leaving the bases loaded in the 9th. Tim Atherton relieved him and closed the game with three strikeouts with the bases loaded.

    LP Brett Lee (0-0, 0.00), who has been quite impressive in his eight innings of limited work, takes the mound tomorrow at 11:30 am. (The forecast isn't good, so make sure you check the weather before you drive from the Cities.)

    Congrats to Taylor Rogers on his promotion to Fort Myers.

    Rochester Red Wings 2, Pawtucket Red Sox 8
    Box Score

    Liam Hendriks again failed to channel his AAA dominance of a year ago, instead showing glimpses of his major league-self. In particular, it took Hendriks 97 pitches (63 strikes) to pitch 5.2 innings. His line was not bad though: eight hits, a walk, two runs and five strikeouts. While his demotion was somewhat puzzling at the time, he has been able to make two starts for Rochester. Meanwhile Pedro Hernandez (and basically the entire staff) hasn’t pitched at all due to the ridiculous weather we’ve been having in the Upper Midwest.

    The first wave of the bullpen did a great job keeping the Red Wings in the game. Mike O’Connor and Tim Wood combined for 2.1 scoreless innings. And then Manager Glynn turned a tied ball game over to Anthony Slama.

    For all of you who supported the #FreeSlama campaign, you may get your wish soon. Tonight’s one-out effort included three hits, two walks and five runs. He’s now dropped to 0-4 with an ERA of 18.47. It was reported, postgame, that Slama was suffering from a stiff back.

    Daniel Turpen got the final two outs and allowed another run, but the damage was already done.

    The Red Wings offense managed only seven hits. A double by Chris Herrmann and two singles by Evan Bigley were the offensive highlights. Bigley (who just joined Rochester) is batting .400. Chris Colabello (.333) and Clete Thomas (.326) are the only regulars batting over .200. Scary, and sad.

    While there is no scheduled starter listed at this time, it would appear to be Virgil Vasquez’s turn in the rotation. Vasquez (2-1, 4.80) has pitched pretty well in his three starts to date.

    Fort Myers Miracle 4, Palm Beach Cardinals 7
    Box Score

    A day after losing to Palm Beach in extra innings, the Miracle drop their third straight. Tonight’s loss was the result of a blown save in the 7th inning.

    Starting pitcher Matt Summers allowed ten hits in four innings. Those hits, and a walk, resulted in three runs. He struck out three. Cole Johnson pitched two scoreless innings.

    Chad Rogers, who came out to open the seventh innings, only recorded two outs, but allowed four runs (one earned).

    Adrian Salcedo struck out three among his four outs.

    Miguel Sano kept it simple today. He singled twice and stole a base (his first of the year). Kyle Knudson added two hits. Kennys Vargas had a double. Eddie Rosario added a triple.

    AJ Pettersen, now batting .352 and playing SS almost every day, has extended his hitting streak to seven games.

    Tomorrow’s scheduled starter, Madison Boer, was placed on the 7-day DL with a broken hand. RP Ryan O’Rourke was also placed on the 7-day DL. The Miracle will play at 6:35 pm ET with newly-promoted Taylor Rogers getting the start.

    New Britain Rock Cats had an off-day today.

    Trevor May (0-1, 3.14) will be back on the mound tomorrow at New Hampshire at 6:35 pm ET. May, who is rivaling teammate Alex Meyer to be the organizational strikeout king, will look to limit his free passes. He has already issued 10 walks in 14.1 innings. He’s also allowed three home runs in three starts.

    RP Marty Popham was released to make room for SP B.J. Hermsen prior to yesterday’s game.

    If you have any questions or comments, please post below. You can also find me on Twitter @jeremynygaard.
    This article was originally published in blog: Twins Minor League Report: Berrios Debuts started by Jeremy Nygaard
    Comments 10 Comments
    1. Don't Feed the Greed Guy's Avatar
      Don't Feed the Greed Guy -
      Atherton inherits sacks full of baserunners from Chris Mazza in the ninth, with nobody out. So, he strikes out the next three batters to earn the save, and the "Large Cajones Award."

      Slamma suffers from whiplash, I mean a stiff neck... or a stiff back, after surrendering "three hits, two walks and five runs."

      Call it "A Tale of Two Closers."
    1. ashburyjohn's Avatar
      ashburyjohn -
      Turpen did Slama no favors by giving up a bases clearing triple. Without that, Slama might have escaped with a mere three runs.
    1. clutterheart's Avatar
      clutterheart -
      Atherton did very well last year with 59 SO for Beliot
      I am really uncertain to as why he started the year at CR. He seems old enough and gets strike outs.
    1. pioneers3's Avatar
      pioneers3 -
      Atherton can be really good and he can also look like a high school kid who has no clue where the ball is going. If he ever figure's out how to repeat his delivery he has a chance to be very good. His cutter is the best pitch he throws, when he is on, it has late life and misses barrel's. Guess he was on last night.

      Berrios, had some nerves early, but settled in later, I expect him to be much better his next start at home, which I believe will be Monday the 29th, if all games are played. Burlington is getting lots of rain right now so game may be PPD again, which would push guys back.

      I guess Walkers HR was an just crushed, a LD ball that just kept going. Will be catching a few games on this upcoming home stand so looking forward to seeing Duff and Berrios pitch.
    1. spycake's Avatar
      spycake -
      Atherton's control was pretty suspect last year in Beloit: 6.6 BB/9. If he gets that under control, he should see some pretty fast promotions as a reliever.
    1. spycake's Avatar
      spycake -
      Holy cow, I just realized Slama is 29 years old. And he's been pitching in AAA for parts of 5 seasons now.
    1. nicksaviking's Avatar
      nicksaviking -
      Something about him reminds me of Michael Strahan....
    1. nicksaviking's Avatar
      nicksaviking -
      Ha, I did a Google image search for Jose Berrios and this one came up:



      Do we have firm confirmation that this isn't our phenom pitcher? I think whoever has the Berrios Adopt-a-Prospect page for him needs to update it with this regardless.
    1. DAM DC Twins Fans's Avatar
      DAM DC Twins Fans -
      I have the Brett Lee prospect page--so I checked the scoreboard and the Kernels game has been postponed. Lee actually hasnt pitched in a week. His record is 2-0. Key stat--O (nada, zilch) BB in 3 games.

      Hopefully he will pitch tomorrow so I can make an update...
    1. Madre Dos's Avatar
      Madre Dos -
      Quote Originally Posted by nicksaviking View Post
      Ha, I did a Google image search for Jose Berrios and this one came up:



      Do we have firm confirmation that this isn't our phenom pitcher? I think whoever has the Berrios Adopt-a-Prospect page for him needs to update it with this regardless.
      NOPE - that doesn't look like the Jose that I was trying to put weight on while he lived here last season. I believe Jose would be a little to shy to pose like that.
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