Previous Relief Pitchers of the Month for 2018:
April 2018: Nick Anderson, Rochester Red Wings
May 2018: Todd Van Steensel, Chattanooga Lookouts
June 2018: Jovani Moran, Cedar Rapids Kernels
July 2018: Well, just keep reading (if you happened to not look at the graphic that you clicked on to read this story.)Before we share our choices for the Twins Minor League Top Five Relievers for July, here are some terrific bullpen performances that just missed the cut.
- Erik Cha- GCL Twins, 7 G, 1.64 ERA, 0.82 WHIP, 11.0 IP, 8 H, 1 BB, 8 K
- Ryan Eades - Chattanooga Lookouts, 6 G, 2.19 ERA, 0.73 WHIP, 12.1 IP, 9 H, 0 BB, 12 K
- Regi Grace - GCL Twins, 3 G, 0.00 ERA, 0.96 WHIP, 8.1 IP, 6 H, 2 BB, 7 K
- Ryne Harper - Chattanooga Lookouts/Rochester Red Wings, 8 G, 1.42 ERA, 1.03 WHIP, 12.2 IP, 11 H, 2 BB, 15 K
- Zach Neff - Elizabethton Twins, 9 G, 2.70 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, 13.1 IP, 11 H, 5 BB, 18 K
- Derek Molina - Elizabethton Twins/Cedar Rapids Kernels, 7 G, 1.42 ERA, 1.18 WHIP, 12.2 IP, 3 H, 12 BB, 22 K
- Andrew Vasquez - Chattanooga Lookouts, 9 G, 2.16 ERA, 1.02 WHIP, 16 H, 1 BB, 29 K
#5 - Jose Martinez - Cedar Rapids Kernels - 8 G, 1.20 ERA, 0.87 WHIP, 15.0 IP, 9 H, 4 BB, 16 K
You may not have heard of Jose Martinez, but this is his sixth season in the Twins organization. Signed in 2013 out of Venezuela by Jose Leon, Martinez spent the 2014 and 2015 seasons in the Dominican Summer League. He spent the last two seasons in Elizabethton. He has spent this entire season with the Kernels in Cedar Rapids.In 28 total games, he has worked 53 2/3 innings. He’s got a 4.53 ERA. He has 50 strikeouts and 21 walks. He was very good in July and ended the month with six scoreless outings covering 11 1/3 innings. He recorded a save in three of his final four outings during the month.
#4 - Jake Reed - Rochester Red Wings - 8 G, 2.03 ERA, 0.68 WHIP, 13.1 IP, 4 H, 5 BB, 11 K
Reed was the Twins fifth-round draft pick in 2014 out of the University of Oregon. He flew up the system, pitching in the Arizona Fall League that year and starting the 2015 season in Chattanooga. However, he has fought some injuries and still has yet to receive the call up. However, if his past two months are any indication, just maybe it will come this year. In July, opponents hit just .095/.224/.143 (.367) against him. Reed has a fastball in the mid-90s that runs in on a right-hander, and he compements it with a mid-80s slider that darts away from a right-hander.
#3 - Adam Bray - Ft. Myers Miracle - 9 G, 0.98 ERA, 0.71 WHIP, 18.1 IP, 8 H, 5 BB, 19 K
Adam Bray had a fantastic baseball career if he had just quit playing after a high school state championship and a national championship with his American Legion team. He went to South Dakota State and then was drafted by the Dodgers. This March, he was acquired by the Twins in a trade. He didn’t join the Miracle until the end of June. As you can see from his numbers, he pitched a lot, and he pitched quite well. Opponents hit just .136/.212/.220 (.432) off of him during the month, and he struck out more than a batter per inning. Get to know a little more about Adam Bray from this story.
#2 - Cody Stashak - Chattanooga Lookouts - 9 G, 0.00 ERA, 0.82 WHIP, 13.1 IP, 7 H, 2 BB, 16 K
Stashak was drafted as a starting pitcher out of St. Johns in the 13th round of the 2015 draft. He was a pretty solid, underrated starter. In 2016, he posted a 2.80 ERA between Cedar Rapids and Ft. Myers. Last year, he posted a 3.60 ERA between Ft. Myers and Chattanooga. This year, the move was made to the bullpen and it has been successful. In 43 2/3 innings so far this year for the Lookouts, he has a 3.09 ERA and 60 strikeouts to go with just 13 walks. In July, he didn’t give up a run, earned or unearned. Opponents hit just .179/.220/.256 (.476) against him during the month. At 6-2 and thin, Stashak throws in the low 90s with a good pitch mix. He’s got good control and command.
And the Twins Minor League Relief Pitcher of the Month is:
Ft. Myers Miracle – LHP Jovani Moran - 8 G, 1.13 ERA, 0.56 WHIP, 16.0 IP, 8 H, 1 BB, 22 K
Moran is the choice for Minor League Relief Pitcher of the Month for the second straight month. The difference, of course, is that he was a member of the Cedar Rapids Kernels throughout the month of June. At the end of the month, Moran was promoted to Ft. Myers and hasn’t missed a beat.
The 2015 seventh-round pick from Puerto Rico has pitched in different roles in his short time with the Miracle, averaging two innings per outing. In July, opponents hit just .148/.164/.204 (.367) against him. In large part, the 22:1 strikeout to walk ratio helps with that.
The 21-year-old missed the 2016 season after having surgery to remove bone spurs from his elbow. He returned strong in 2017, and he was the Twins Daily short-season Minor League Pitcher of the Year. For Elizabethton, he gave up just one run in 24 2/3 innings (0.36 ERA), and had just six walks to go with 45 strikeouts.
Moran is not a big guy .He stands 6-foot-1 and weighs in at about 170 pounds. He’s got a good whip action and some deception in his delivery. His fastball reaches into the low-90s, and he’s got a good slider and changeup. He really just needs to keep working and developing, and gaining strength could help him add a little more velocity. He’s a really good athlete who fields the position well.There were several strong relief pitcher performances in July throughout the Twins minor league system. It was a good month for each of these pitchers mentioned today, but for the second straight month, Congratulations to Jovani Moran. He is the Twins Daily Minor League Relief Pitcher of the Month for July 2018.
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