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  • Twins Minor League Week in Review: One Week To Go

    Seth Stohs

    The Mighty Mussels and Kernels each had really good weeks. The Kernels and the Saints had some great offensive performers. As we begin the final week of the minor league regular season (for Double-A and A-Ball), find out who is ending the season strong and what lies ahead for each team. 

    Image courtesy of Seth Stohs, Twins Daily

    Be sure to read Nick’s Twins Week in Review from yesterday, and then jump into the minor league week. 

    Before we get started, let’s check out the organization’s transactions and the  FCL Twins game from Monday. 

    There were several announced transactions on Monday’s minor league off day. 

    • With Brent Rooker going on the Paternity List, the Twins called up RHP Kyle Barraclough
    • Also, for Tuesday’s Twins double-header, LHP Charlie Barnes will be called up to start Game 2 after Joe Ryan starts Game 1. 
    • RHP Melvi Acosta promoted from Cedar Rapids to Wichita. 
    • RHP Casey Legumina promoted from Ft. Myers to Cedar Rapids. 
    • SS Wander Javier placed on the IL. 
    • RHP Ryan Shreve sent to Ft. Myers to begin a rehab assignment. 
    • RHP Jackson Hicks has been promoted from the FCL Twins to Ft. Myers. He was signed in July out of the USPBL. 
    • 2021 draft picks, RH Pierson Ohl and LHP Jaylen Nowlin were assigned to the FCL Twins… and they made their pro debuts on Monday in the below game.  

    FCL Twins Talk
    FCL Twins 4, FCL Pirates 10 
    Box Score 

    The Twins fell behind 3-0 before they scored four runs in the top of the fifth frame. Luis Gomez walked with the bases loaded. Rubel Cespedes and Dillon Tatum scored on a fielder’s choice and error on a ground ball. Luis Baez then singled in one run. That was it for the Twins scoring. Their three and four hitters (Emmanuel Rodriguez and Kala’i Rosario) combined to go 0-for-8 with eight strikeouts. 

    Niklas Rimmel made a start. He was charged with an unearned run on one hit. Pierson Ohl gave up three runs on five hits over 1 2/3 innings in his pro debut. He was replaced by Jaylen Nowlin making his debut. He gave up four runs (3 earned) on two hits, two walks and a hit batter. Elipidio Perez gave up two runs on three hits and a walk in two innings. Danny Moreno pitched one perfect inning. 

    With that, let’s look at Week 19 in the Twins minor leagues: 

    Triple-A: St. Paul Saints: Week (3-3, hosting Omaha), overall (58-56)
    Double-A: Wichita Wind Surge: Week (3-3, hosting NW Arkansas), overall (65-40)
    High-A: Cedar Rapids Kernels: Week (4-2, @ Wisconsin), overall (63-51)
    Low-A: Ft. Myers Mighty Mussels: Week (5-1, hosting Palm Beach), overall (57-53) 
    Complex League FCL Twins: Week (2-4), overall (19-35)

    Triple-A East Midwest: Toledo 67-47, Omaha 64-40, St. Paul 58-56. 
    Double-A Central North: Wichita 65-49, Arkansas 62-52, NW Arkansas 60-53.
    High-A Central West: Quad Cities 73-39, Cedar Rapids 63-51, Wisconsin 54-59.
    Low-A Southeast: Tampa 72-40, Bradenton 70-43, Ft. Myers 57-53. 

    Here are the week’s Twins minor league-related articles. 

    We will start with the Twins choices for the organizational hitter and pitcher of the week, and then mention several other Twins prospects who had good Week 19 performances

    Twins Player of the Week: Alex Isola, Cedar Rapids Kernels   
    Alex Isola had a huge week for the Cedar Rapids Kernels. Over his six games in Wisconsin, he hit .286/.333/.714 (1.048) with four homers. In 93 games on the season, he has hit .247/.351/.435 (.786) with 13 doubles, 17 home runs and 51 RBI. He has caught 43 games and played 29 games at first base. He has also DHd 21 times. 

    Isola was the Twins 29th round pick in 2019 from Texas Christian. He played at Utah in 2017 and at a junior college in 2018. 

    Twins Pitcher of the Week: Cade Povich, Ft. Myers Mighty Mussels            
    Cade Povich made his second Mighty Mussel start. He gave up just one hit (and a hit batter), or three scoreless innings. He struck out five batters. Over his two starts for Ft. Myers, he has a 1.50 ERA and a 0.83 WHIP. In six innings, he has given up four hits, walked one and struck out 11 batters. Before that, he made one appearance in the FCL. 

    Povich was the Twins third-round pick in July out of the University of Nebraska. This season, he went 6-1 with a 3.11 ERA. In 15 starts and 81 innings, he walked 22 and struck out 88 batters. 

    Other Strong Performances this Week

    St. Paul Saints
    The highlight for the offense was setting the high-water mark for runs scored in a game on Saturday when they scored 21 runs against Omaha. And while it was just one game, the Saints had a lot of strong offensive performances this week! 

    JT Riddle has had a tough year, but this week, he hit two homers, drove in seven and posted a 1.203 OPS. Tomas Telis played six games and hit .407/.448/.704 (1.152) with two doubles and two homers. Gilberto Celestino hit .444/.500/.630 (1.130) with two doubles and a homer. Jose Miranda hit .421/.421/.632 (1.053) with a double and a homer. Drew Maggi hit .278/.381/.611 (.992) with two homers. David Banuelos played in two games. In one of those games, he had three hits, including two home runs, one of which was a grand slam. (1.569 OPS) Sherman Johnson hadn’t had a hit since August 26th (0-for-17) until Saturday night when he hit a home run. Now, that was his only hit of the week, in just six at bats, but the incredible thing is that he still managed a 1.282 OPS because he walked seven times to go along with the homer. Mark Contreras hit two doubles and two homers including a 461 foot blast! 

    Charlie Barnes, Robinson Leyer and Nick Vincent each gave up one run on two hits over 3 1/3 innings this past week. Barnes did so in a shortened-start so that he can make the Game 2 start for the Twins on Tuesday night. Leyer over two appearances, and Nick Vincent did that over three outings. Yennier Cano threw twice and gave up a total of one run on two hits in 5 1/3 innings. Derek Law had a scoreless, one-hit three inning appearance. Jovani Moran pitched two scoreless innings in his outing last week, and then had the highlight of the week for any player. He was called up to the big leagues and made his MLB debut. 

    I was at CHS Field on Friday and Saturday nights. On Saturday, the Saints had a tremendous pregame show that culminated with three former Navy Seals parachuting into the stadium. 


    Wichita Wind Surge
    His season has been filled with ups and downs, but Jordan Balazovic’s outing this week earned him the league’s pitcher of the week honors. He tossed six no-hit innings. He gave up an unearned run and walked two batters while striking out five batters. Cole Sands was also really, really good in his two starts last week. He tossed 12 innings and gave up only an unearned run on five hits and four walks. He struck out ten batters. Jordan Gore worked twice and gave up only one hit over 2 1/3 scoreless innings. Evan Sisk gave up only an unearned run on two hits over 3 2/3 innings. Austin Schulfer threw 4 1/3 scoreless innings in his start. He gave up two hits and struck out six, despite walking five batters.

    DJ Burt finally got some more playing time recently, and he has done quite well. Last week, he played all six games and hit .458/.480/.833 (1.313) with three doubles and two homers.  

    Cedar Rapids Kernels
    Cody Laweryson had arguably his best start of the season. He struck out nine batters over six shutout innings. He gave up three hits and two walks. Andrew Cabezas worked twice out of the bullpen and gave up just one run on four hits over 6 2/3 innings. He struck out eight batters. Osiris German struck out five batters over 3 2/3 scoreless innings over his two outings. Denny Bentley struck out four batters over 2 2/3 shutout innings. 

    It was a really good week for the Kernels’ hitters. Edouard Julien played six games and went .391/.576/.783 (1.358) with three homers. He also walked 10 of his 23 plate appearances. Anthony Prato played in just two games, but he went 4-for-8 (.500) with a double, two walks and a game-winning single. Matt Wallner hit .320/.433/.760 (1.193) with two doubles, three homers and nine RBI. Michael Helman hit .346/.393/.654 (1.047) with a double, two triples and a homer. He also stole five bases. Jeferson Morales hit .353/.476/.529 (.1006). Aaron Sabato hit .300/.400/.600 (1.000) with two homers. DaShawn Keirsey played four games in his return from the IL and hit .313/.368/.563 (.931) with a double and a homer. 

    Also, the Kernels played in Wisconsin and got to face the TimberRattlers wearing one of their alternate uniforms, which are fantastic! 

    Ft. Myers Might Mussels
    Regi Grace made his second start since returning from the IL. He tossed three scoreless innings. He struck out three, walked one and gave up two hits. Juan Pichardo struck out four batters over three scoreless innings. Casey Legumina gave up just one run on two hits and a walk over 5 2/3 innings. He struck out six and was rewarded with a promotion to Cedar Rapids.  

    Charles Mack played in three games and hit .417 (5-for-12) with a double and two home runs (1.417 OPS). Mikey Perez moved up to the Mussels quick, and he responded by hitting .529/.600/.706 (1.306) with three doubles. Christian Encarnacion-Strand’s 15-game hitting streak ended, but for the week, he hit .391/.462/.478 (.940) with a triple. Will Holland hit .300/.462/.450 (.912) with a home run. Jake Rucker hit .450/.458/.450 (.908). Alerick Soularie hit .273/.448/.455 (.903) with a double, a homer and seven walks. 

    FCL Twins 

    Wander Valdez played in five games and hit .400/.500/.733 (1.233) with two doubles and a home run. Noah Miller also played five games. He hit .400/.455/.650 (1.105) with a triple and a homer. Carlos Aguiar had a two-homer game. 

    Top pick Chase Petty made his pro debut on Friday. He tossed two scoreless innings. He gave up two hits, walked none and struck out two batters while showing really good stuff.  


    We are talking about small samples for these six-game weeks, so it’s important not to make any big decisions or develop a full impression on a player from this small size. It’s just a reminder of the fact that baseball is hard, and all players have good and bad stretches.  

    St. Paul Saints
    Jason Garcia was the starting pitcher in the 21-4 win against Omaha. Unfortunately, he gave up four runs on five hits and two walks and went just three innings. 

    Caleb Hamilton went 0-for-7 for the week. 

    Wichita Wind Surge
    It was a highlight in last week’s report that Simeon Woods Richardson made his first appearance in the organization. It was a lowlight that he only went 1 1/3 innings. He had control issues, but didn’t give up any runs. This week, Woods Richardson is just in this list. In his second start, he gave up six runs on three hits and three walks over just 1 2/3 innings. Chris Vallimont had another rough start. He gave up nine runs (7 earned) on nine hits (3 HR) and two walks in 2 1/3 innings. Zach Neff gave up two runs on two hits and a walk and got just two outs in his outing this week. 

    Catchers Chris Williams and Stevie Berman each had one hit in seven plate appearances. Jermaine Palacios and Austin Martin were each 3-for-17 (.176). Leobaldo Cabrera went 4-for-23 (.174). 

    Cedar Rapids Kernels

    A week after being the Twins minor league pitcher of the week, Sawyer Gipson-Long had a tough start. He gave up six runs on three hits and three walks and only recorded one outs. He needed 38 pitches. He left with the bases loaded and all three runs scored. Tyler Watson gave up four runs on three hits (2 HR), three walks and a hit batter in three innings. 

    Gabriel Maciel and Yunior Severino each played just two games. Severino went 1-for-8 (.125) and Maciel went 1-for-9 (.111). 

    Ft. Myers Might Mussels

    Kole McKinnon went 1-for-11 (.091) with seven strikeouts. Willie Joe Garry went 2-for-16 (.125) with seven strikeouts. Patrick Winkel went 3-for-16 (.188). 

    This Prospect Summary shows our updated Twins Top 20 Prospect Rankings. 

    #1 - Royce Lewis (Wichita) - Out for Season (torn ACL)
    #2 - Austin Martin (Wichita) - 31 games, .243/.385/.374 (.759) with 6 doubles, 3 home runs, 19 RBI, 17 BB, 27 K.
    #3 - Jordan Balazovic (Wichita) – 19 GS, 93.1 IP, 94 H, 34 BB, 97 K, 3.38 ERA, 1.37 WHIP
    #4 - Simeon Woods-Richardson (Wichita) - 2 GS, 3.0 IP, 0 H, 6 BB, 4 K, 18.00 ERA, 3.00 WHIP.
    #5 - Jhoan Duran (St. Paul) – 5 G, 4 GS, 16.0 IP, 16 H, 13 BB, 22 K, 5.06 ERA, 1.81 WHIP (on IL with a right forearm strain) 
    #6 - Jose Miranda (St. Paul) – 111 games, .337/.397/.560 (.957) with 26 doubles, 26 homers, 78 RBI, 39 BB, 71 K
    #7 - Joe Ryan (Minnesota) - St. Paul (2 GS, 9.0 IP, 5 H, 2 BB, 17 K, 2.00 ERA, 0.78 WHIP), Minnesota (2 GS, 12.0 IP, 4 H, 1 BB, 9 K, 2.25 ERA, 0.42 WHIP)
    #8 - Matt Canterino (Cedar Rapids) – 5 GS, 21.0 IP, 10 H, 4 BB, 43 K, 0.86 ERA, 0.67 WHIP (IL, elbow strain)
    #9 - Chase Petty (Complex) - 1 GS, 2.0 IP, 2 H, 0 BB, 2 K, 0.00 ERA, 1.00 WHIP.
    #10 - Keoni Cavaco (Ft. Myers) – 60 games, .233/.296/.301 (.597) with 6 doubles, 2 triples, 2 homers, 24 RBI, 18 BB, 89 K, 5 SB (Temporary Inactive List)

    #11 - Josh Winder (St. Paul) - 14 GS, 72.0 IP, 55 H, 13 BB, 80 K, 2.63 ERA, 0.94 WHIP (IL, shoulder impingement)
    #12 - Matt Wallner (Cedar Rapids) – 60 games, .260/.349/.506 (.855) with 13 doubles, 2 triples, 14 homers, 44 RBI, 26 BB, 91 K.
    #13 - Gilberto Celestino (St. Paul) – Wichita (21 games, .250/.344/.381 (.725) with 5 doubles, 2 homers. 11 BB, 24 K), St. Paul (34 games, .313/.401/.508 (.909) with 10 doubles, 5 homers, 24 RBI, 18 BB, 29 K), Minnesota (22 games, .140/.183/.298 (.482) with 3 BB, 13 K)
    #14 - Drew Strotman (St. Paul) - 7 GS, 31.2 IP, 38 H, 16 BB, 26 K, 7.39 ERA, 1.71 WHIP.
    #15 - Noah Miller (Complex) - 18 games, .275/.346/.435 (.781) with 3 doubles, 1 triple, 1 homer, 13 RBI, 7 BB, 19 K
    #16 - Brent Rooker (Minnesota) – St. Paul (58 games, .239/.368/.566 (.934) with 8 doubles, 1 triple, 19 homers, 37 BB, 74 K), Minnesota (44 games, .203/.291/.392 (.683) with 8 doubles, 7 homers, 13 RBI, 12 BB, 56 K)
    #17 - Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) – 3 GS, 14.2 IP, 13 H, 6 BB, 23 K, 1.84 ERA, 1.30 WHIP (underwent Tommy John surgery on June 9th)
    #18 - Misael Urbina (Ft. Myers) – 97  games, .192/.299/.288 (.587) with 11 doubles, 4 triples, 5 homers, 51 RBI, 52 BB, 78 K, 13 SB)
    #19 - Cole Sands (Wichita) – 18 G, 17 GS, 75.1 IP, 56 H, 32 BB, 92 K, 2.63 ERA, 1.17 WHIP
    #20 - Spencer Steer (Wichita) - 104 games, .258/.354/.489 (.843) with 16 doubles, 3 triples, 23 homers, 58 RBI, 53 BB, 100 K) 

    Tampa @ Ft. Myers: (John Stankiewicz, TBD, TBD, Regi Grace, Brent Headrick, TBD):
    Cedar Rapids @ Peoria: (Cody Laweryson, Louie Varland, Sean Mooney, Sawyer Gipson-Long, Aaron Rozek, Tyler Watson):
    Arkansas @ Wichita: (Simeon Woods-Richardson, Jordan Balazovic, Chris Vallimont, Cole Sands, Austin Schulfer, Simeon Woods-Richardson):
    St. Paul @ Indianapolis: (Drew Strotman, Beau Burrows, Andrew Albers, Jason Garcia, Bryan Sammons, Drew Strotman):

    Feel free to ask any questions you like.



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    I know Duran, Canterino and Wilder are on the IL, but where are they at health wise? Are the Twins hoping rest and rehab will keep them away from the knife? Been a painful year for the top pitching prospects.

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    18 minutes ago, HrbieFan said:

    I know Duran, Canterino and Wilder are on the IL, but where are they at health wise? Are the Twins hoping rest and rehab will keep them away from the knife? Been a painful year for the top pitching prospects.

    Canterino and Duran have elbow stuff... and both are on a throwing program in Ft. Myers. Winder is a shoulder thing, and he's also in Ft. Myers. I doubt any of the three will pitch in a game this year. And yeah, I'm sure they are trying everything to avoid surgery. 

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    Thanks for the report, Seth.  That video of the Seals landing at CHS Field is amazing.  The flag shows that it was also very windy, making any type of jump tricky.

    Must question the Twins pick of Povich as Pitcher of the Week, seeing he pitched only 3 innings.  Seems more suspect after looking at Balazovic and Sands performance(s) in Wichita. 

    Great seeing those numbers from the trio with the Mussels, Encarnacion-Strand, Rucker and Perez, as well as Valdez and Miller for the FCL Twins.  Took note of Javier going on the IL.  With all the rule changes the past year, not certain if he has the six years required to be a MiLB free agent.  Do you know if he does?  If so, he may have played his last game for the Twins.  Bloody shame this kid was never able to put it together, both with his bat and health.  Remain fearful that he will figure it out and become a star with another team.

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