Tuesday Notes From Ft. Myers
by, 03-18-2014 at 02:46 PM (334 Views)
Overcast skies in the morning gave way to a bright sun, and this Tuesday has turned into a beautiful one here in Ft. Myers, where the Twins are getting set to face off against the Orioles in a couple hours.
To tide you over until then, here are a few notes gathered from wandering around the complex this morning and afternoon:
* Phil Hughes got his work in on the side fields earlier today, facing off against Orioles minor-leaguers under the watchful eye of his manager, who viewed the action from his perch on a tower that sits in the middle of the minor-league fields.
It's difficult to judge the performance of a veteran big-leaguer facing minor-league hitters -- particularly the High-A bunch that Hughes was matching up against -- but the right-hander looked good. In six innings of work, he allowed only four hits, and two of those were ground ball singles.
Hughes struck out seven, ringing up three hitters on called third strikes with the breaking ball. As Parker has pointed out, mastering that curve will be a major key for Hughes this season.
* Vance Worley sat quietly at his clubhouse stall this afternoon while many of his teammates milled around, chatted and played cards. He starts tonight, and he knows it's a big one.
In what is essentially a three-player race for the fifth rotation spot, Worley entered the spring third in line based on last year's results, and he remains there based on his results in Grapefruit League play.
In eight innings spread across two starts, Worley has allowed nine earned runs on 11 hits (two homers) while walking three and striking out only four.
It's widely believed that between Samuel Deduno, Scott Diamond and Worley, two will make the club -- one as a starter and one as a reliever. Deduno has been extremely impressive this spring and Diamond was rock solid in his last outing. Time is running out for Worley to make up ground. He needs to show something tonight.
* Pedro Florimon's official spring debut was delayed by last night's rainout, so he'll get his first chance tonight at Hammond. He's trying to hold off Eduardo Escobar, who has enjoyed a good spring and was spotted taking a lengthy session in the cage today, swinging extensively from both sides.
* Had a chance to chat with Glen Perkins, who's a lot of fun to talk ball with. We discussed his increasing K-rates, his new contract and the race for the final spot in the Twins rotation. He called out Kyle Gibson as a dark horse contender, adding that the young righty is "throwing great."
Perkins is also looking forward to retiring as a Twin, though he joked that the team's success might dictate his career timeline.
"If we aren't good by then," he said, referring to 2018 when his new extension expires, "I'll probably just quit."
* Tune into the @TwinsDaily Twitter account for insights and observations from this evening's game.