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Twins Minor League Report (7/1): Walkoffs in Minneapolis and St. Paul

The Twins weren't the only walkoff-winner in the organization on Friday night. Find out everything that happened throughout the organization on Friday. 





The Twins had an exciting, Byron Buxton walk-off win over the Baltimore Orioles in Game 1 of their three-game series at Target Field. Just three minutes earlier, 10-ish miles east at CHS Field, the St. Paul Saints had an unlikely comeback that resulted in a walkoff win as well. 


Most of the Twins affiliates fell behind early and attempted comeback. Find out if any of the others were able to complete that comeback. 

Let’s get to the report. As always, please feel free to discuss and ask questions. 


  • The Twins selected the contract of RHP Juan Minaya.
  • The Twins DFAd RHP Tyler Thornburg
  • RHP Casey Legumina was placed on the IL in Wichita. 
  • RHP Pierce Banks was added to the Cedar Rapids roster. He had signed with the Twins out of the United Shores Professional Baseball League (USPBL) about a month ago and had pitched a couple of games for the FCL Twins. 

St. Paul 4, Omaha 3 
Box Score

Just moments before the Byron Buxton provided the Twins with a walk-off win, the Saints were celebrating a four-run ninth inning and a walk-off win of their own. 

The ninth inning began with a single from Spencer Steer. Jake Cave stayed hot and hit his ninth homer of the season to cut the Saints’ deficit to just 3-2.



One batter later, Mark Contreras hit a double. Michael Helman followed with an RBI double of his own.



Roy Morales followed with a single to left, but Helman was thrown out at home. Morales advanced to second on the throw. He was replaced on the bases by John Andreoli. After Curtis Terry was intentionally walked, Jermaine Palacios pinch hit and drew a walk to load the bases. Newcomer Braden Bishop lined a single to left that scored Andreoli with the winning run. 



Not only were the Saints down 3-0 going into the ninth inning, but they had just one hit and two walks. In their four-run ninth, they had six hits and two walks. Cave led the offense going 2-for-4 with the homer and two RBI. 

Ronny Henriquez had an Henriquez-like start in this one. The diminutive right-hander, gave up two runs over 4 2/3 innings. He gave up just three hits. However, he also walked three batters. But his stuff can be absolutely electric and his night ended with seven strikeouts. 

Evan Sisk came on and gave up a run on three hits over 1 1/3 innings. Jake Petricka tossed a scoreless inning. Wladmir Pinto earned the Win with two scoreless innings. 

Wichita 1, Springfield 5  
Box Score 

The Wind Surge fell behind quickly when Sawyer Gipson-Long gave up three runs in the first inning. In total, the Twins #20 prospect gave up five runs on seven hits and a walk over four innings. He struck out five batters. Steven Cruz struck out four batters over two perfect innings, and Andrew Cabezas struck out one batter over two scoreless innings. More fun, Blayne Enlow was ejected, even though he wasn’t pitching. 

Wichita had just six hits and six walks on the night. The top two hitters, Matt Wallner and Edouard Julien, each walked twice. Julien added a single. Chris Williams and DaShawn Keirsey Jr each had 2-for-4 nights. Keirsey hit his 14th doubles and stole his 20th base of the season. He also made a great diving catch in center field. 


On the other side, Austin Martin showed incredible range on a pop up behind second base, but he came out of the game with what appeared to be a hand or wrist, or some kind of arm injury. Hopefully he isn’t out for very long. 


Cedar Rapids 9, Wisconsin 12
Box Score

I think it’s fair to say that this game did not start out well for Bradley Hanner and the Kernels. The right-hander, who has been terrific this season, posting a 4-2 record with a 2.03 ERA, all out of the bullpen, was asked to start this game. He faced seven batters and gave up seven runs on four hits and three walks before exiting the game. Miguel Rodriguez came on and allowed two of Hanner’s runners to score before giving up two more runs on four hits over 2 1/3 innings. 


Matthew Swain got the final out of the third frame. However, he gave up three runs in the fourth inning on two hits and two walks before being replaced by Tyler Palm. He tossed 2 1/3 scoreless innings and Derek Molina got the final five outs without any more damage. Catcher Frank Nigro walked two and struck out two batters in the eighth innings without allowing a run. 

Down 12-2 after just four innings, the Kernels scored four in the fifth inning and three more in the ninth inning but fell shy in their comeback attempt. The Kernels scored nine runs on seven hits. In addition, they had 10 walks and a whopping six hit by pitches. (Might be interesting to see Saturday and Sunday’s games!). Unfortunately, the Kernels went just 3-for-15 with runners in scoring position and left 13 runners on base. 

Yunior Severino went 2-for-4 and was hit by two pitches. Seth Gray had two hits, including his first triple of the season. Kyler Fedko went 0-for-3, but he had a walk and twice drove in runs by being hit by a pitch with the bases loaded. Jake Rucker had three RBI on a bases-clearing triple. 

Fort Myers 5, Dunedin 8
Box Score  

The Mussels fell behind early. They mounted a power-filled comeback late, but it was a bit too late. 

Lefty Jaylen Nowlin started and gave up five earned runs on five hits over 2 2/3 innings. He walked three and struck out two batters. All five runs came in the top of the third frame. Jonathan Lavallee gave up a hit and three walks over two innings, but he did not allow a run to score, other than one of three inherited runners in the third. John Wilson worked the next 2 1/3 innings. He gave up two runs on two hits and a walk. Malik Barrington gave up one run on one hit and one walk in 1 1/3 innings. He struck out two batters. Jackson Hicks came on to get the final two outs, but not before allowing an inherited runners to score the Blue Jays final run of the night. 

Down 7-0 going into the seventh inning, Mikey Perez hit his sixth homer before LaRon Smith hit his first Florida State League long ball. In the eighth inning, Zach Huffins hit his first homer for the Mussels, a two-run home run. In the ninth, Dillon Tatum added a solo homer, his fourth of the season. Tatum went 2-for-4, the lone multi-hit game of the night. Huffins added a walk to his homer. 

FCL Twins 3, FCL Red Sox 0
Box Score

Starting Pitcher: Luis Rijo (3 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 3 K, 2 HBP) 
Multi-Hit Games: Misael Urbina (2-for-3, R, RBI, 2B, HBP) 
2B: Breilin Ramirez (1), Misael Urbina (2), Ricardo Olivar (3)
Rehab Players: Rijo, Jon Olsen (1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K), Alex Phillips (1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K), Jeferson Morales (1-for-4, RBI, K) 
Top Prospects: Urbina, Danny De Andrade (0-for-4). 

Rehabbing righties Rijo, Olsen and Phillips combined for five scoreless innings. Tomas Cleto came on and slammed the door! He worked four perfect innings and struck out seven batters to earn his second save of the season. 

Misael Urbina played in his fifth game since his Visa issues were worked out and he was able to get to Ft. Myers. In the fifth inning, he drilled a double to score Breilin Ramirez. Jefferson Morales singled to score Urbina, who will likely join the Mighty Mussels soon. In the sixth inning, Ricardo Olivar scored on a wild pitch. 

DSL Twins 2, DSL Giants Black 3
Box Score

Starting Pitcher: Cristian Jimenez (5 IP, 7 H, 3 R, 0 BB, 7 K)
Multi-Hit Games: None
2B: Yilber Herrera (2) 
Top Prospects: Bryan Acuna (0-for-2, RBI, SF, K), Yasser Mercedes (0-for-4, RBI, 2 K)

Down in the Dominican, the Twins fell behind 3-0 after two innings. In the sixth inning, the Twins got an RBI ground out by Mercedes that scored Luis Rodriguez. Acuna followed with a sacrifice fly to score Herrera. That was it, and the game ended after seven innings played. 

Pitcher of the Day – Tomas Cleto (FCL Twins) - 4 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 7 K
Hitter of the Day – Jake Cave (St. Paul) - 2-for-4, R, 2 RBI, HR (9) 

Check out the Prospect Tracker for much more on the new Twins Top 20 prospects after seeing how they did on Tuesday. With the turning of the calendar to July, Twins Daily has updated its Top 20 Prospect rankings.  

#2 - Austin Martin (Wichita) - 0-for-1, (played SS, injured) 
#6 - Spencer Steer (St. Paul) - 1-for-4, R 
#8 - Noah Miller (Ft. Myers) -  0-for-4, K
#12 - Matt Wallner (Wichita) - 0-for-3, RBI, 2 BB, K 
#13 - Blayne Enlow (Wichita) - Did Not Pitch, ejected
#14 - Edouard Julien (Wichita) - 1-for-3, 2 BB
#15 - Ronny Henriquez (St. Paul) - 4 2/3 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 7 K
#20 - Sawyer Gipson-Long (Wichita) - 4 IP, 7 H, 5 ER, 1 BB, 5 K (83 pitches, 54 strikes)

Omaha @ St. Paul (6:07 PM CST) - RHP Ariel Jurado (0-1, 5.40 ERA) 
Wichita @ Arkansas (1:35 PM CST) - RHP Blayne Enlow (0-2, 5.25 ERA)
Cedar Rapids @ South Bend (1:05 PM CST) - RHP John Stankiewicz (2-4, 6.55 ERA) 
Dunedin @ Fort Myers (6:00 PM CST) - RHP Mike Paredes (3-2, 2.29 ERA)

Please feel free to ask questions and discuss Friday’s games! 


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Nice summary, Seth. Three thoughts. First, many people are down on Cave but I respect him for going down and playing his butt off (and doing well) to try to get back to the bigs. It shows character. Second, Helman is quietly putting together a good year. He is another one off those under the radar prospects who works hard to improve and has. Finally, I agree that Henriquez has great stuff. I have seen him once live, and on MiLB TV and if he can harness his control and find his spots, he could be special. After all, he is only 22 years old pitching at AAA, so he has some time to put all the pieces together. 

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I was at the Kernels game. The T-Rs took out their starter in the fifth inning. His team had scored 8 runs in the first, he had given up ZERO HITS, and he didn't get the W. The walks and HBP were astonishing, It was like watching a little league game. I believe the Kernels had 6 runs and 2 hits at one point.

And despite having the catcher pitch (incredible changeups, BTW), they still managed to have the tying run at the plate in the ninth inning.

The all-you-can-eat tropical food buffet for Margaritaville Night was good- not great, but good. Very depressed that the beer you could get with the two drink coupons was either Miller Light or Coors Lite, which does not qualify as beer anywhere but wedding receptions. Fun game, great atmosphere, nice fireworks. Catch a game if you are in Appleton, WI looking for something to do.

Big Dog reporting.

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