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  • Minor League Report (7/31): A New Prospect Approaches


    Matt Braun

    The Twins saw the first impact of their recent trades on Saturday as Drew Strotman made his St. Paul debut on Saturday. Read all about that and more in this edition of the minor league report. 

    Image courtesy of Rob Thompson, St. Paul Saints

    TRANSACTIONS

    • RHP Ryan Mason promoted to AAA St. Paul
    • LHP Evan Sisk added to AA Wichita (received from St. Louis in the J.A. Happ trade)
    • RHP Simeon Woods Richardson added to AA Wichita and placed on the Temporary Inactive list (he is pitching for team USA in the Tokyo Olympics)
    • RHP Alex Scherff added to AA Wichita and placed on the IL
    • OF Gilberto Celestino optioned to AAA St. Paul as Luis Arraez was activated from the IL

     

    Saints Sentinel
    St. Paul 5, Indianapolis 6
    Box Score
    Drew Strotman: 4 ⅓ IP, 3 H, 4 ER, 2 BB, 1 K
    HR: None
    Multi-hit games: Mark Contreras (2-for-5, 2B, 2 RBI)

    A much anticipated prospect made his Saints debut on Saturday.

    RHP Drew Strotman, one of the pitchers received by the Twins in the Nelson Cruz trade, started for St. Paul for the first time. It was not smooth sailing for Strotman who gave up four runs while striking out just a single batter. It was not the best of first impressions, but Strotman will certainly have more opportunities to impress in the future.

    The Saints offense did its best to back Strotman. The 1-2 punch of Jose Miranda and Mark Contreras combined for two runs and three RBIs as both players bugged Indianapolis’ pitching staff all night. Oh, and Miranda is casually chilling with a AAA batting average in the .350’s. Just FYI.

    A few notable relievers threw scoreless outings on Saturday. Ian Hamilton tossed 1 ⅔  innings with no earned runs, Jovani Moran threw 1 ⅓ IP with no earned runs, and Yennier Cano, uh, hurled a single inning without any earned runs. At least one (if not all) of those players will certainly be on the Twins sometime soon.

     

    Wind Surge Wisdom
    Wichita 4, NW Arkansas 8
    Box Score
    Adam Lau: 2 ⅔ IP, 1 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 4 K
    HR: B.J. Boyd (7), Jermaine Palacios (13)
    Multi-hit games: B.J. Boyd (2-for-4, HR, R, RBI), Jermaine Palacios (2-for-3, HR, 2B, 3 RBI)

    Wichita could not hold on to the lead on Saturday. 

    B.J. Boyd kicked off the scoring quickly by blasting a lead-off homerun before fans could even reach their seats. It was Boyd’s seventh homer of the season and the hit, yet again, has proved Boyd to be a worthy and useful addition to the Twins’ minor league system.

    Boyd was not the only hitter to get in on the homer fun. Jermaine Palacios continued on his path of destruction by sending his 13th shot of the year over the wall in the 4th inning. Last week, I wrote about Palacios as one of, if not the single most pleasantly surprising player in the minor league system. Today was no exception. 

    Unfortunately, Boyd and Palacios were essentially the entire Wind Surge offense. Trey Cabbage was the only other player to net a hit in the game, and all four RBIs were the result of either Boyd or Palacios. 

    It was no more smooth for Wichita on the pitching side of the equation. All four of their pitchers allowed at least one earned run, with Zach Neff acting as the guiltiest culprit (four earned runs allowed over seven outs). All in all, it was a rather forgettable night for the Wind Surge as they are waiting until the massive prospect reinforcements finally reach Kansas. Evan Sisk, acquired in the J.A. Happ/John Gant trade, made his debut in the Twins organization. He gave up one run over two innings. 

     

    Kernels Nuggets
    Cedar Rapids 2, Wisconsin 12
    Box Score
    Cody Laweryson: ⅔ IP, 2 H, 3 ER, 0 BB, 1 K
    HR: None
    Multi-hit games: Yunior Severino (2-for-3, 2B, R, BB), DaShawn Kiersey (2-for-3, 3B)

    Things could have gone better for Cedar Rapids on Saturday.

    The first sign that today would not end up being the day for the Kernels occurred in the very first inning. Cody Laweryson was unable to finish his first frame of work due to an apparent injury and had to be replaced by Tyler Palm. Wisconsin took advantage of the unpredicted short start by plating seven runs in the first two innings.

    That more or less stood to be the end of the Kernels’ odds of winning. They were able to plate two runs in an attempt to regain something of a lead, but it was to no avail. 

    For the sake of having some food news, Breckin Williams and Ryan Shreve combined to allow just a single earned run over three innings of relief. In total, they struck out seven batters.

     

    Mussel Matters

    The game between Fort Myers and Clearwater was canceled as Clearwater has been struck by a COVID-19 outbreak. Tomorrow’s match between the two teams has been canceled as well.

    Complex Chronicles
    FCL Twins 6, FCL Red Sox 4
    Box Score
    Juan Mendez: 3  IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 1 K
    HR: None
    Multi-hit games: Kala’i Rosario (2-for-3, R, RBI, BB), Yonardy Soto (3-for-4, RBI)

    The FCL Twins turned around their luck and beat the FCL Red Sox on Saturday.

    Juan Mendez did his job by holding the Red Sox in check over his 3 2/3 innings of work. Yeah, walking more than you strike out is not generally ideal, but zero earned runs is zero earned runs. You take those.

    Samuel Perez was even more impressive as he pitched for four innings to finish off the game, and struck out five while allowing just two baserunners. Now that is a well-earned win.

    The win was actually well within hand for the Red Sox. They had put up a four-spot in the 6th inning while holding the Twins scoreless up until that point. However, the Twins broke out for a pair of runs in the 7th, and followed that up with their own four-spot in the 8th. Somehow, they ended up with six runs off of just one extra-base hit.

     

    TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY
    Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Samuel Perez
    Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Jermaine Palacios

     

    PROSPECT SUMMARY
    Here’s a look at how the Twins Daily Top 20 Twins Prospects performed:

    #1 – Royce Lewis (Rehab) – Out for season (torn ACL)
    #2 – Jhoan Duran (St. Paul) – Injured List (elbow strain)
    #3 – Jordan Balazovic (Wichita) – Did not pitch
    #4 – Matt Canterino (Cedar Rapids) – Injured List (right elbow strain)
    #5 – Jose Miranda (St. Paul) - 1-5, 2 R, 2 K
    #6 – Keoni Cavaco (Fort Myers) – No game
    #7 – Gilberto Celestino (St. Paul) – Did not play
    #8 – Josh Winder (St. Paul) – Did not pitch
    #9 – Aaron Sabato (Fort Myers) – No game
    #10 – Matt Wallner (Cedar Rapids) – Did not play

    #11 – Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) – Out for Season (Tommy John surgery)
    #12 – Bailey Ober (Minnesota) – 4 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 6 K
    #13 – Cole Sands (Wichita) – Did not pitch
    #14 – Brent Rooker (Minnesota) – 1-5, 2 R, K
    #15 – Misael Urbina (Fort Myers) – No game
    #16 – Spencer Steer (Wichita) – 0-2, 2 BB
    #17 – Wander Javier (Cedar Rapids) – 0-4, 2 K
    #18 – Alerick Soularie (Complex) – N/A (foot injury)
    #19 – Edwar Colina (Rehab) – Injured List (elbow)
    #20 – Chris Vallimont (Wichita) – Did not pitch

     

    SUNDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS
    Cedar Rapids @ Wisconsin (12:05 PM) RHP Tyler Beck
    Indianapolis @ St. Paul (1:05 PM) RHP Chandler Shephard 
    Wichita @ NW Arkansas (1:05 PM) TBD 
    Fort Myers @ Clearwater Canceled 

     

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    For a free agent pickup, BJ Boyd is hitting pretty darn well, .289/.363 (.818 OPS). Not bad for a guy who hasn't played since 2018.

    I keep seeing Kala'i Rosario's name pop up here, and he's hitting really well .301/.352 (.882 OPS). He's at the bottom of my prospects spreadsheet, but I think he's a guy who could definitely jump up the rankings if he keeps playing well as he ages. 

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    Bring up Miranda - he deserves it and the Twins need a jolt - I would also reward Contreras with some MLB time.  Cave is not the future, use his spot for some young players.   Bring up the Saint's bullpen trio and let's see if they can be the answer to next year.

    I just look at the posts on TD today and it feels like the trade deadline was the end of the season for the team.  Understandable.  It would have been nice if Strotman had pitched great and gave us a boost, but this is reality and it did not happen.  

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    9 hours ago, Danchat said:

    For a free agent pickup, BJ Boyd is hitting pretty darn well, .289/.363 (.818 OPS). Not bad for a guy who hasn't played since 2018.

    I keep seeing Kala'i Rosario's name pop up here, and he's hitting really well .301/.352 (.882 OPS). He's at the bottom of my prospects spreadsheet, but I think he's a guy who could definitely jump up the rankings if he keeps playing well as he ages. 

    With the season Boyd has produced combined with the FACT that he's accumulated 2800+ ABs in his minor league career since being drafted by OAK in 2012, he deserves a September call up as a reward.  In this lost season, Twins mgmt should do the right thing and bring him up to 'The Show'

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    We'll see where Strotman ends up at the close of the year. They've got some work to do with him, but Ryan was the better piece in that trade to my mind. Looking forward to him joining after the Olympics.

    Palacios is a great story. He's getting a bit old for AA but has done a nice job in rebuilding his confidence at the plate after 2 very rough years in the TB system. Is he really a prospect or organizational depth? Probably still a little unclear, but he should contend for a spot on the 40 man and might be a nice INF option to have in AAA next year. Would love to know more about his defense?

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    The biggest news today/yesterday was that the FCL Twins win, the FCL Twins win!!!

    Not a great first outing for Strotman.  I understand that he had TJ surgery, was it last year or at the end of 2019?  Did he get back on the field at the start of this season?  Expect having been on the sideline for over a year could have an effect on what we see the rest of the year.  In any case, he is not one of the top prospects joining the Twins last week.  In my opinion, the three top prospects would be Martin and the two pitchers in Tokyo.  If any of that trio don't make serious contributions to future Twins teams, I will be disappointed.

    Rosario had another excellent game in the FCL Twins win.  Twins may have found a good one in last year's draft.  Sabato is the only other 2020 pick playing, right?  I know Soularie is injured, what about the young pitcher from West Texas? 

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    I went to CHS last night to see Strotman. He looked good in the 1, 2 and 4th innings (even with the HR in the 2nd). In the 3rd and 5th, he had no idea where his pitches were going. I thought he might throw a bit harder but his fastball was alive at the top of the zone.

    A fun night until the smoke rolled in. The llamas were enjoyed by all and the dogs in attendance were well behaved. The only negative was the atrociously long concession lines. I got spoiled when attendance was limited.

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    2 hours ago, jmlease1 said:

    ...Palacios is a great story. He's getting a bit old for AA but has done a nice job in rebuilding his confidence at the plate after 2 very rough years in the TB system. Is he really a prospect or organizational depth? Probably still a little unclear, but he should contend for a spot on the 40 man and might be a nice INF option to have in AAA next year. Would love to know more about his defense?

    Palacios is definitely a prospect which has rebuilt a lot of his value in my opinion. He's average age for the competition in AA this year at 24, but he's overdue for a promotion to AAA. I'd like to see him in MLB this year. He has more plate appearances in 2021 than the last 2 years combined. His walk rate is way up, and the past couple years (with not many plate appearances) showed some really horrible BABIP luck. If Palacios can hit .700 OPS at the MLB level, he can fill in at shortstop until Lewis or Martin is ready (if they make it). If Palacios can hold a .725 OPS, he could very well be a legitimate MLB shortstop.

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    Can somebody remind me what are the rules for the September call-ups now? I know last year changed but I don't remember what changes were for just last year, and what changes stayed. How many players can be called-up? Thanks

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    8 hours ago, darwin22 said:

    With the season Boyd has produced combined with the FACT that he's accumulated 2800+ ABs in his minor league career since being drafted by OAK in 2012, he deserves a September call up as a reward.  In this lost season, Twins mgmt should do the right thing and bring him up to 'The Show'

    They can't call up many guys any more.... Sure would in the old rules though

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    1 minute ago, Mike Sixel said:

    They can't call up many guys any more.... Sure would in the old rules though

    I realize roster size is limited to 28 after September 1st.  Saying that, is it impossible for Boyd (or Drew Maggi) to get a call up in September as a reward for their achievements this season?  Would be a 'feel good' story for both to get at least 1 AB in 'the Show' after they've combined for over 6000 minor league ABs in their careers.

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    On 8/1/2021 at 6:16 PM, darwin22 said:

    I realize roster size is limited to 28 after September 1st.  Saying that, is it impossible for Boyd (or Drew Maggi) to get a call up in September as a reward for their achievements this season?  Would be a 'feel good' story for both to get at least 1 AB in 'the Show' after they've combined for over 6000 minor league ABs in their careers.

    My assumption is they would have to be on the 40 man roster, and by my math there is 39 players on that, not sure if any of the players on the 10 day could be moved to the 60 day to open up a few more spots, but my guess is that is one of the reason we aren't seeing any of the AAA relief pitchers in MN, not enough room on the 40.

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