It has been more than 24 hours since the last time the Twins lost, which is a pretty big deal here in Twins territory. The Twins MiLB affiliates went 1-3 on the day but they had a couple of nice performances to make up for the poor results.
Continue reading to find out more detail about Thursday in the Twins farm system:
RED WINGS REPORT
Gwinnett Braves @ Rochester
Byron Buxton, heard of him? He hit leadoff for the Wings and was 2-5 with a run scored and a strike out. He also stole a base. Speed kills, you guys. James Beresford had himself a day, 3-4 with a double and a run scored. Buck Britton, who, I assume, is hoping to capitalize on the excellent alliteration that he shares with Byron Buxton, was 2-4 with a double and a run scored, the only other Rochester hitter with multiple hits. As a squad, the Red Wings struck out six times and walked three times.
Rochester starter David Martinez (who?! 2005 international free agent signee by the Astros, bounced to the Texas Rangers MiLB system in 2015 before joining the Twins in 2016) fell behind early, giving up a pair of runs in the first, another in the third, and a fourth in the fifth (which proved to be the game winner) before being lifted. Martinez finished with four runs, all earned, on nine hits, a walk, a dinger, and he struck out five. The bullpen was dominant behind Martinez, giving up just one hit over the next four innings, with 1.1 innings from Dan Runzler, 1.2 from Alex Wimmers, and a scoreless ninth from Buddy Boshers. Boshers now owns a 1.15 ERA and could be the next man up if the Twins bullpen continues to struggle.
Final: Braves 4, Red Wings 3
Pensacola Blue Wahoos @ Chattanooga
The Lookouts dealt with a mid-game rain delay in the sixth inning, then turned in a strong bullpen performance and nearly put the game into extra innings, making the final out with the game-tying run in scoring position.
'Nooga took an early lead in the bottom of the first on a Ryan Walker RBI single that scored Zach Granite, but they fell behind the Blue Wahoos after surrendering a run each in the second and third innings and they never regained the lead. Chattanooga managed eight hits and five walks, but just didn't have enough to overcome that early deficit. Zach Granite (2-5, with a run scored) and Stuart Turner (3-4 with a solo home run) were the only Lookouts hitters with multiple hits. Shannona Wilkerson had a solo home run of his own as well, hitting in the nine-spot.
Aaron Slegers was the pitcher of record for the Lookouts, he started and went 4.1 innings with four earned runs off of six hits. He also walked four and struck out three. In the middle of the fifth, Mike Strong took over for Slegers and induced a double play to get the Lookouts out of a jam, but then gave up a run in the sixth, to put Chattanooga down 5-3. Luke Westphal then pitched three scoreless innings of one-hit baseball, giving up a walk and striking out four. Westphal now owns a 1.80 ERA.
Final: Blue Wahoos 5, Lookouts 4
Bradenton Marauders @ Fort Myers
The Miracle used a three-run seventh inning to secure a victory, despite being outhit 14-10. Of the 10 Miracle hits, 5 were clustered between just two hiiters, Edgar Corcino (2-4 with a double and a run scored) and Max Murphy (3-3 with a double and a walk). No other Miracle hitter had multple hits. As a team, Fort Myers struck out twelve times and walked just twice, so they're clearly learning from the Big League club!
Miracle Starter Keaton Steele pitched six innings of two-run baseball but left without a decision, despite earning a quality start. Brandon Peterson vultured a W to move to 2-0 thanks to that big seventh inning. Brian Gilbert came on to start the eighth and laid an egg, giving up a run and two hits, and walking a pair without recording a single out. Todd Van Steensel came in to save the day with a two inning save, his third of the year. Van Steensel gave up just one hit and struck out three, facing the minimum thanks to a pitcher-friendly double play.
Final: Marauders 3, Miracle 4
Cedar Rapids @ Wisconsin Timber Rattlers
It does not seem fair to say that a team of young men working as hard as they can to win a game don't deserve a victory, but it sure felt like the Kernels tried their best to give this game away. Up 5-4 in the bottom of the ninth, the Kernels gave up a leadoff home run to the Rattlers' cleanup hiiter and then gave up the game winner an inning later to lose in walk-off fashion.
The Kernels tallied 12 hits on Thursday evening, two each from Luis Arraez and Sean Miller, and three from J.J. Fernandez, who had the best night in the system (3-4, two doubles, two runs scored, a walk and a strike out).
On the bump, the Kernels went with a bullpen game, giving two innings to "starter" Andro Cutura, who walked three and struck out three but kept Wisconsin off the board. Kuo Hua Lo gave up three runs, all UNEARNED, over 2.2 innings, but he walked four along with the four strike outs he recorded. Sam Gibbons was then charged with a blown save (his first of the year) giving up a run before turning the game over to C.K. Irby. Irby, ever the competitor, made sure to outdo Gibbons, and Irby picked up both a blown save and the loss, giving up a run in the ninth and tenth innings to lose the game. Irby struke out five, walked one and gave up three hits.
TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS OF THE DAY
Hitter of the Day - J.J. Fernandez - Cedar Rapids Kernels
Pitcher of the Day - Todd Van Steensel - Fort Myers Miracle
Syracuse Chiefs @ Rochester (6:05pm) - A.J. Cole vs. Jason Wheeler (1-1, 1.80)
Pensacola Blue Wahoos @ Chattanooga (6:15pm) - Amir Garrett vs. Ryan Eades (1-2 5.70)
Fort Myers @ St. Lucie Mets (5:30pm) - Felix Jorge (2-2, 1.38) vs. Scarlyn Reyes
Cedar Rapids @ Wisconsin Timber Rattlers (6:35pm) - Sam Clay (2-1, 0.95) vs. Miguel Diaz
Please ask questions and discuss the Thursday games.