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Jeremy Nygaard

Twins Minor League Report (4/14): Miracle Explosion/Kernels Walk-off

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The Twins enjoyed an off day today. Tomorrow is Jackie Robinson Day around baseball and the Twins kick off a three-game series with the Blue Jays.

On the farm, it was a big day for multiple former first-round picks.
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Make sure you're checking out the other stories featured on the front page and if you're so inclined, join Seth and I tomorrow night on the latest edition of Twins Hangouts.


RED WINGS REPORT
Rochester 5, Pawtucket 9
Box Score

The Wings dropped a rain-shortened game to the PawSox tonight (at least it appeared like it was going to be rain-shortened when they pulled the tarp in the top of the 9th).

Trevor May couldn't build off the gem he had last game and was only able to retire one batter in the 5th inning of tonight's game. He gave up four runs on five hits and two walks. He struck out four and threw 84 pitches (54 strikes).

Brooks Raley, who currently holds the belt as the 40th man on the 40-man, gave up five hits, a walk and three runs in one inning.

Edgar Ibarra and A.J. Achter didn't do much better, both allowing runs in their innings-plus of work.

Danny Santana was the offensive highlight, with his two triples and three total hits. Eduardo Nunez added a double and Eric Fryer had a two-hit game.

ROCK CATS REVIEW
New Britain 2, New Hampshire 3
Box Score

The highlight of this game was likely the debut of former (and potentially future Twin) Matt Guerrier. Matt Guerrier was recently activated from Rochester’s DL and sent to New Britain. He pitched one innings, throwing 20 pitches, 16 for strikes. He struck out two.

Pat Dean made the start and allowed one run in four innings. He struck out one and was removed after only 60 pitches. The weather was not great, with a 35-minute delay likely playing into the short start.

Dan Turpen took the loss in his season debut. He allowed two runs in two innings. Jim Fuller pitched a hitless final frame.

The offense turned in a pretty dismal performance. Reynaldo Rodriguez proved two of the team’s four hits, including a home run. Brandon Waring added a double and Kennys Vargas drove in the team’s other run.

To make room for Matty G., the Rock Cats removed B.J. Hermsen from the roster and sent him to Extended Spring Training.

MIRACLE MATTERS
Ft. Myers 7, Charlotte 3
Box Score

The Miracle improved to 7-4 with a convincing win over Charlotte Stone Crabs.

The story of tonight’s game was the start of Alex Wimmers. I was clearly excited about Wimmers getting back into the rotation, as the following message I sent to Seth last night shows:

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As always, Seth the Optimist shared my enthusiasm.

It got off to a bit of rocky start when Wimmers allowed a double to the first batter he faced and then balked that runner over the third. Of course, the former Big Ten Pitcher of the Year has faced his share of adversity over the last handful of years, so he barely blinked… and then retired the next 18 (!) batters he faced. His final line of six innings looked fantastic: 6 IP, H, 6 K. He was sitting in the high-80s, but throwing his changeup and curveball effectively. If you remember, as an amateur he could dial it up to the mid-90s and had a silly changeup. He’s starting to piece it all back together, so don’t sleep on Wimmers as a prospect yet.

Matt Tomshaw picked up the three-inning save despite giving up three runs on three hits. He struck out four.

The offense came to play tonight too. Despite slow starts by both Max Kepler (0-for-5, now batting .094) and Adam Walker (0-for-5 and batting a powerful .205), the Miracle offense has still shown life. Tonight’s 18-hit, 7-extra-base-hit performance was solid proof of that.

Travis Harrison, batting 8th, went 5-for-5 with two runs, a double and an RBI. He’s now batting .286. He was 5-for-30 (.167) with a double and an RBI for the season before the game. Levi Michael is showing some prospect-life too. Tonight, he provided a 4-for-5 night with two runs, a double and a walk.

Jorge Polanco drove in two runs and is now batting .400 after a two-hit game including a double. Dalton Hicks came up a home-run short of the cycle. He also walked twice and drove in three. (But somehow failed to score a run.) Niko Goodrum also had two hits and is still batting a robust .325.


KERNELS NUGGETS
Cedar Rapids 5, South Bend 4
Box Score

The Kernels improved to 8-3, winning their sixth straight, with a walk-off win tonight on a chilly night in Cedar Rapids.

Aaron Slegers made the start and allowed four runs in five innings. He walked one and struck out three. The bullpen combo of Brandon Bixler (2 IP, BB, 3 K) and Hudson Boyd (2 IP, BB, 2 K, Win) closed the game out with four hitless innings.

Bryan Haar led the offense (again) with three hits, including a triple. Mitch Garver also added three hits, his last an infield hit to the pitcher that scored the winning run. Tanner Vavra had two hits (one double).

The Kernels entered the ninth inning down two runs. The winning sequence started with a Joel Licon walk. Logan Wade advanced Licon to second on a pinch-hit single. Jeremias Pineda failed to advance the runners on a bunt attempt before flying out. Jason Kanzler drove in Licon with a single. Tanner Vavra followed that with another single to load the bases. That brought Zack Larson, who has been the Kernels most dangerous hitter. Larson coaxed a walk to tie the game. Finally, Garver drove in Kanzler to win the game.

TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY
Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Alex Wimmers, Fort Myers Miracle
Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Travis Harrison, Fort Myers Miracle

MONDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS
Pawtucket @ Rochester (6:05 CST) – Scott Diamond (Listen)
New Britain @ New Hampshire (4:35 CST) – D.J. Baxendale (Listen)
Ft. Myers @ Charlotte (5:30 CST) – Jason Wheeler (Listen)
South Bend @ Cedar Rapids (6:35 CST) – Ryan Eades (Listen)

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