Minnesota Twins News & Rumors Forum
  • Who's Got Next?

    There has been plenty of speculation the last week or two about which Twins starter would be replaced in the rotation, and by whom. First, it was Kevin Correia, and now he has had two straight terrific starts including last night’s 1-0 loss to the Red Sox. Sam Deduno has had two very poor starts in a row, and now the discussion is about who will take his spot in the rotation starting on Thursday.

    The Rochester Red Wings starting rotation has been very impressive which means that speculation of who will make Deduno’s start on Thursday can lead in several directions. We’ll try to clarify that today, or at least arm you with what you need to know as it relates to the Twins decision.

    While we are at it, we’ll take a look at some of the other players (relievers and hitters) in Rochester who deserve at least consideration for a call up to the Minnesota Twins.

    RED WINGS STARTERS

    We’ve been informed via Chris Fee that Sean Gilmartin has been called up to the Red Wings and will start on Tuesday. Yohan Pino will now start on Wednesday. Alex Meyer has been pushed to Thursday. Logan Darnell follows Meyer in the Red Wings rotation. Trevor May pitched on Monday night, and Kris Johnson pitched on Sunday. So, here’s a look at the Red Wings starters and their promotion credentials.

    Alex Meyer – Meyer is the top prospect, the guy that we are all waiting for. He has been solid with the Red Wings this year. Meyer has a record of 4-3, with a 3.62 ERA. In 64.2 innings, he has given up 56 hits, walked 30 and struck out 76. We love the strikeout rate. We love the big fastball, and the fact that he has four pitches that most evaluators believe will make him a top of the rotation starter. That said, if you’re walking 4.2 per nine innings in AAA, that isn’t very good. It is his career high.

    He is coming off of his worst start of the year. He went just two innings on Friday and gave up three runs on five hits and two walks. He threw 55 pitches before being removed. The start before that he threw six shutout innings and gave up just four hits and a walk while striking out eight. The game before that, four runs in five innings. Consistency is a legit concern at this point for the 24-year-old, but there’s little question he can be a good big league starter.

    Yohan Pino – The Twins signed Pino in 2004. He was traded to Cleveland in the Carl Pavano trade in 2009. Since then, he’s been between AA and AAA but never made it to the big leagues. The 30-year-old right-hander is at least putting his name on the map as a possible call up. He is 9-1 with a 1.92 ERA and a 0.93 WHIP. Though he doesn’t throw very hard, he has been racking up strikeouts. In 61 innings, he has 61 strikeouts to go with just 16 walks. He has pitched out of the bullpen and as a starter and done well in either role.



    Kris Johnson – Johnson came to the Twins this offseason in a trade for Duke Welker, who was the player to be named later in the Justin Morneau trade to Pittsburgh. Last year, he led the International League with a 2.39 ERA. He’s doing just as well this year. He is 6-3 with a 2.60 ERA. He has 62 strikeouts and 28 walks in 72.2 innings. He did make one start for the Twins earlier in the season and went five innings. Johnson has struggled in two of his last three starts. Most recently, he gave up three runs on five hits and three walks in 5.2 innings. The start before that, he gave up two runs in eight innings. Three starts ago, he gave up five runs on four hits and three walks in five innings.

    Logan Darnell – The 25-year-old had a nice ten-day stint with the Twins earlier this season when the Twins needed a bullpen guy who could eat multiple innings. In his one appearance, he was very impressive in three shutout innings. With the Red Wings, he is 2-4 with a 2.75 ERA and a 1.37 WHIP. In 55.2 innings, he has 53 strikeouts, but he also has walked 24 (3.9 BB/9 IP). On June 8, he gave up four runs on eight hits and three walks in 5.1 innings. In his most recent start, he threw five innings and gave up only an unearned run. He gave up just three hits, but he uncharacteristically walked five. His spot in the rotation comes up on Thursday, making him the starter who is in line to start in Deduno’s spot without altering his schedule.

    Trevor May – The speculation was that the 24-year-old might be the guy to come up to replace Deduno. Some of that may be because he was on the same schedule as Kevin Correia who two starts ago looked to be on his last leg. May made his scheduled start on Monday night. He wasn’t on a pitch count limit, to be sure. He threw 120 pitches and pitched in the ninth inning and gave up just one run. Control was his biggest issue earlier in his career, but his walk rate has drop from 4.7/9 innings in 2012 to 4.0/9 innings in 2013. After last night’s start, his walk rate is at 3.5 per nine. Like Meyer, May has the “stuff” and the prospect status that people believe will give him a shot to succeed in the big leagues.

    Let’s just compare the stats of these five starters. Try your best not to look at the name and especially their ages when evaluating who has been the best, or is the most deserving of the promotion.

    Pitcher W-L ERA WHIP H/9 BB/9 K/9
    Alex Meyer 4-3 3.62 1.33 7.8 4.2 10.6
    Logan Darnell 2-4 2.75 1.37 8.4 3.9 8.6
    Kris Johnson 6-3 2.60 1.20 7.3 3.5 7.7
    Yohan Pino 9-1 1.92 0.93 6.0 2.4 9.0
    Trevor May 7-4 2.77 1.11 6.5 3.5 9.4


    There is no statistical analysis that can look at the above numbers and say that Yohan Pino is not deserving of an opportunity. However, that’s where the statistical world and the scouting world will butt heads. Many will say that Pino doesn’t have the stuff to get big league hitters out. That may very well be true. However, my opinion (and maybe mine alone) is that when you put up those kinds of numbers at the highest level below the big leagues, you deserve an opportunity just to see. That said, if any of these five guys got called up, or get called up later in the season, it will have been earned.

    If you believe Trevor May should be the one promoted, they can do so creatively. They could have Darnell start for the Twins on Thursday, in his normal spot, and then after the game send him down. At that point, there could be a shifting of the rotation such that May would start on Sunday or Monday for the Twins as well. It can happen if they choose to go in that direction. That said, if it is Logan Darnell, he’s earned the opportunity and it would be nice to see him get a handful of starts.

    THE BULLPEN OPTIONS

    Real quickly I wanted to point out that there are a couple of good options in Rochester if the Twins needed a bullpen arm (and didn’t just move a starter there). AJ Achter and Michael Tonkin both have pitched well for the Red Wings. Tonkin has the name, and he’s on the 40 man roster, and he throws pretty hard. Achter is not on the 40 man roster, doesn’t throw as hard, but has consistently put up remarkable numbers. If they were to want or need a left-hander, Aaron Thompson should be considered.

    Pitcher W-L ERA WHIP H/9 BB/9 K/9
    AJ Achter 2-2 1.38 0.61 3.6 1.9 8.5
    Michael Tonkin 1-0 1.93 1.00 7.1 1.9 9.0
    Aaron Thompson 1-2 2.67 1.15 6.7 3.7 8.3


    HITTERS

    Chris Colabello and Josmil Pinto were a big part of the Twins offense early in the season. They are each working their way back in Rochester, but a few other names are worth getting to know.

    Deibinson Romero made a strong impression with his bat in spring training, and he has continued to rake in Rochester. He is now hitting .312/.407/.468 (.875) with 17 doubles and five home runs. He does already have 15 errors at third base, but his bat may be able to play in the big leagues.

    While Romero is the hitter, the Twins have a couple of glove-first guys in Rochester who would have to be considered if the Twins need another utility infielder (they have several already). We saw Doug Bernier last year. He has been playing all over the diamond this year, and he’s hitting .288/.369/.412 with 10 doubles and three home runs. James Beresford has been the Red Wings second baseman. He’s hitting .293/.343/.360 (.703) with 11 doubles, a triple and a homer.

    Eric Farris got one at-bat in 2011 with the Milwaukee Brewers. In 2012, he went 1-8 with the Brewers. He came to the Twins a year ago and split time between New Britain and Rochester. He’s been the primary centerfielder for the Red Wings this year. He has hit .289/.328/.362 (.690).

    So, there may not be as many hitters as pitchers putting up big numbers, but it’s always nice to know who could be next should a need arise.
    Comments 67 Comments
    1. Tuba's Avatar
      Tuba -
      Lets just take a second to appreciate that we aren't choosing between Cole De Vries, PJ Walters, and Pedro Hernandez.
    1. twinstalker's Avatar
      twinstalker -
      Quote Originally Posted by Tuba View Post
      Lets just take a second to appreciate that we aren't choosing between Cole De Vries, PJ Walters, and Pedro Hernandez.
      Amen, brother.
    1. h2oface's Avatar
      h2oface -
      I find it interesting that a starter in AAA is "struggling" when they pitch to a line of "three runs on five hits and three walks in 5.2 innings" (Johnson - one out away from what is touted as a quality start for the Twins, and the same line would get a nice headline and it would be reported that they "gave the team a chance to win"). I also think that Pino and Achter will get the Slama treatment and never really get a shot with the Twins, but make for good politics and a winning AAA team for the Rochester fans.

      Do Twins' fans really want to see anyone other than Meyer and May? Is the front office going to wait until they are at the end of their pitch count for the year or give them an opportunity with fresher young arms?
    1. blindeke's Avatar
      blindeke -
      Quote Originally Posted by h2oface View Post
      I also think that Pino and Achter will get the Slama treatment and never really get a shot with the Twins, but make for good politics and a winning AAA team for the Rochester fans.
      [Sigh] Yeah, I see this happening too.
    1. kblack1011's Avatar
      kblack1011 -
      The problem for Pino and Achter is not being on the 40 man roster. They have competition that are putting up similar stats and are already on the roster, so it make it difficult for them to get call up.
    1. Thrylos's Avatar
      Thrylos -
      The starting rotation has been very impressive
      I think that the most accurate statement is: Phil Hughes has been very impressive.

      Including Hughes, as a collective the rotation has been mediocre to bad (4.86 ERA, 1.436 WHIP, 5.3 K/9, a .286/.336/.443 opponent batting line etc). I know that mediocre to bad is a step up from hideous to awful that was the last few seasons, but by no means it is "impressive" or "solid".

      I'd replace Deduno and Correia with May and Meyer right away, Burton and Guerrier with Pino (yes, I still see him as a reliever) and Achter, Theilbar with Kris Johnson and maybe Swarzak with Correia (or Darnell)
    1. Thrylos's Avatar
      Thrylos -
      Quote Originally Posted by kblack1011 View Post
      The problem for Pino and Achter is not being on the 40 man roster. They have competition that are putting up similar stats and are already on the roster, so it make it difficult for them to get call up.
      Nobody is putting stats similar to Pino or Achter. I suspect that Dedudo's, Burton's, Guerrier's spots (to begin with, not to mention the Colabellos of the world) would be enough
    1. bobonewsome's Avatar
      bobonewsome -
      Meter is still on a pitch count, according to his manager. I think he said 85 when he was on 1500 espn
    1. TKGuy's Avatar
      TKGuy -
      Quote Originally Posted by Tuba View Post
      Lets just take a second to appreciate that we aren't choosing between Cole De Vries, PJ Walters, and Pedro Hernandez.
      Just that statement alone says progress
    1. Shane Wahl's Avatar
      Shane Wahl -
      Quote Originally Posted by Thrylos View Post
      I think that the most accurate statement is: Phil Hughes has been very impressive.

      Including Hughes, as a collective the rotation has been mediocre to bad (4.86 ERA, 1.436 WHIP, 5.3 K/9, a .286/.336/.443 opponent batting line etc). I know that mediocre to bad is a step up from hideous to awful that was the last few seasons, but by no means it is "impressive" or "solid".

      I'd replace Deduno and Correia with May and Meyer right away, Burton and Guerrier with Pino (yes, I still see him as a reliever) and Achter, Theilbar with Kris Johnson and maybe Swarzak with Correia (or Darnell)
      Pretty much agree with your moves here, though we know Meyer has only about 90 or so innings left and I wouldn't want him to just be done in mid-August.

      I like that Correia's ERA is down to 5.29 and we note progress, somehow.
    1. Seth Stohs's Avatar
      Seth Stohs -
      Quote Originally Posted by Thrylos View Post
      I think that the most accurate statement is: Phil Hughes has been very impressive.

      Including Hughes, as a collective the rotation has been mediocre to bad (4.86 ERA, 1.436 WHIP, 5.3 K/9, a .286/.336/.443 opponent batting line etc). I know that mediocre to bad is a step up from hideous to awful that was the last few seasons, but by no means it is "impressive" or "solid".

      I'd replace Deduno and Correia with May and Meyer right away, Burton and Guerrier with Pino (yes, I still see him as a reliever) and Achter, Theilbar with Kris Johnson and maybe Swarzak with Correia (or Darnell)
      I just edited the sentence you were disagreeing with to clarify that I was referring to the Red Wings pitching staff being very impressive.
    1. tobi0040's Avatar
      tobi0040 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Thrylos View Post
      I think that the most accurate statement is: Phil Hughes has been very impressive.

      Including Hughes, as a collective the rotation has been mediocre to bad (4.86 ERA, 1.436 WHIP, 5.3 K/9, a .286/.336/.443 opponent batting line etc). I know that mediocre to bad is a step up from hideous to awful that was the last few seasons, but by no means it is "impressive" or "solid".

      I'd replace Deduno and Correia with May and Meyer right away, Burton and Guerrier with Pino (yes, I still see him as a reliever) and Achter, Theilbar with Kris Johnson and maybe Swarzak with Correia (or Darnell)
      The future is now. May and Meyer are upgrades now and into the future. I agree, they should replace Deduno and KC. Achter needs to get a shot as well. Johnson is 29 and Pino is 30, so they should be viewed as relief or starter depth, i.e. come up if we have a rash of injuries for a game or two, double-headers, etc.

      I don't really see where KC fits. If we can't get anything in return for him, we should DFA him. He is not helping us in the rotation blocking someone younger and better.

      I think Swarzak is perfect where we have him. A long reliever/pen guy with a 3.28 ERA last year and 3.85 this year is a useful piece.
    1. Seth Stohs's Avatar
      Seth Stohs -
      It is funny that even after giving up just one run over his last two starts (admittedly against a couple of teams from the weak AL East) that people still want Correia replaced. I'm not saying I think it'll last but it should hold off for right now and resume when he's pitching poorly again.
    1. SD Buhr's Avatar
      SD Buhr -
      Yeah rushing to release Correia just when he's starting to pitch well makes no sense at all. Even if the plan is to bring up Meyer and/or May mid-year, why would you release a veteran starting pitcher just when he's beginning to build some trade value?
    1. Lakeside's Avatar
      Lakeside -
      Quote Originally Posted by Thrylos View Post
      I think that the most accurate statement is: Phil Hughes has been very impressive.

      Including Hughes, as a collective the rotation has been mediocre to bad (4.86 ERA, 1.436 WHIP, 5.3 K/9, a .286/.336/.443 opponent batting line etc). I know that mediocre to bad is a step up from hideous to awful that was the last few seasons, but by no means it is "impressive" or "solid".

      I'd replace Deduno and Correia with May and Meyer right away, Burton and Guerrier with Pino (yes, I still see him as a reliever) and Achter, Theilbar with Kris Johnson and maybe Swarzak with Correia (or Darnell)
      I don't think it needs to be this wholesale. How about May for Deduno now. Trade Correia to a NL contender in July and get something for him while at that time bringing up Meyer. That puts your rotation at Hughes, Nolasco, Gibson, May, and Meyer going into August/September. If we can be within 3-4 games at that time we will have a shot.

      Relievers. . . I'm of the opinion Burton just doesn't have the movement anymore. Replace him with Achter or Tonkin. While Guerrier has experience, maybe Pino would be better. Finally, I beleive that Swarzak still has it and will find it. . .if not, then maybe Pino, Johnson, or Darnell replace him in the long spot.

      Players. . . I also think the offense will need a little more pop in the stretch. How about Rosario stepping into CF full time with Santana at short?
    1. beyondclarity's Avatar
      beyondclarity -
      Quote Originally Posted by h2oface View Post

      Do Twins' fans really want to see anyone other than Meyer and May?

      Yes, Darnell. Let's not forget he's a lefty and was a 6th round pick.
    1. mike wants wins's Avatar
      mike wants wins -
      I agree with Seth....let's ride KC while he's hot. The KC situation will settle itself sometime in the next month or so. Either they are in or out of contention. Either he has pitched well, or not. The combination of those two things will determine what happens with him.

      Deduno, otoh, this should be his last shot. If the AAA guys aren't better than what Deduno is doing right now, then they aren't really all that, are they?

      I also don't get the Achter treatment. ONE of the reasons to use young players as RP is to have the freedom to send them up and down, and not be paranoid about losing them.....but the Twins just don't seem to trust young RP at all (or maybe they've just not developed any).
    1. tobi0040's Avatar
      tobi0040 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Seth Stohs View Post
      It is funny that even after giving up just one run over his last two starts (admittedly against a couple of teams from the weak AL East) that people still want Correia replaced. I'm not saying I think it'll last but it should hold off for right now and resume when he's pitching poorly again.
      Kevin has 3 k's in those 11 IP over his last two starts. That type of BABIP is not sustainable and we know what Kevin is at this point. His ERA on the year is 5.29, career 4.53 mostly NL. He is 33 now and not part of the future. The only thing we could hope for is a trade, but the market for him as a free agent was not a booming market and I am guessing we made phone calls after his 4.29 ERA last year with no one that would bite, even with only one year and $5M left on his contract.

      I personally believe May and Meyer over KC will help this team win more games now, and obviously Kevin will not be part of this team next year. So it is inevitable at this point. We may as well accept it and move on.
    1. SD Buhr's Avatar
      SD Buhr -
      Yeah and just think of how much fun it will be around here after the Twins release Correia and he gets picked up and is productive for another team down the stretch while the Twins got nothing for him. Just reading all the "Twinss FO is stupid" comments is always so entertaining.
    1. John Bonnes's Avatar
      John Bonnes -
      3.6 H/9?

      3.6?!!!!?

      Are we sure Achter is throwing a regulation baseball?
©2014 TwinsCentric, LLC. All Rights Reserved.
Interested in advertising with Twins Daily? Click here.