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  • Twins Minor League Report (7/26): Wind Surge and Kernels Powered to Wins


    Steve Lein

    Tuesday saw the return of a pair of top pitching prospects in Double-A, but it was power from the lineups for Cedar Rapids and Wichita that led their teams to victories.

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    TRANSACTIONS
    There were a slew of transactions in the system leading into Tuesday’s games.

    • RHP Tyler Viza was released from the St. Paul Saints roster, and RHP Daniel Gosset was assigned from the Wind Surge in his place..
    • In Double-A, RHP Francis Peguero was assigned to Wichita from Cedar Rapids, RHP Simeon Woods Richardson, and RHP Blayne Enlow were activated from the injured list. SS Kevin Merrell was released, and RHP Melvi Acosta was placed on the development list.
    • In Fort Myers, LHP Ryan Horstman was sent on a rehab assignment with the FCL Twins, and LHP Jesus Toledo was released.

    SAINTS SENTINEL
    Iowa 6, St. Paul 2
    Box Score

    Devin Smeltzer took the hill for the Saints on Tuesday and was solid through his five innings. He allowed just one run on four hits and a walk while punching out six Cubs hitters. Despite that effort, he wasn’t in line for a win as his offense struggled just as much against the opposing pitchers.

    They did manage to tie the game at one in the bottom of the fifth by stringing together three singles, the third of which was the RBI variety off the bat of Tim Beckham.

    Drew Strotman was summoned for the sixth inning and allowed a hit, a walk, and an unearned run for the Cubs to retake the lead. Juan Minaya came on for the seventh and delivered a scoreless inning.

    In the bottom half, the Saints put together a two-out rally, started by a Spencer Steer walk. Jake Cave then brought him home with a double to tie the game at two.

    Back out for the eighth, Minaya ran into trouble and a fielders choice grounder allowed another go-ahead run to score for the Cubs. Minaya finished 1 1/3, striking out one. 

    With rain and lightning rearing its head by this point, the game was at risk of being suspended at any point. They made it into the top of the ninth inning and Evan Sisk had recorded three outs by that point, including two K’s, but a single and a walk in the ninth came before being delayed. 

    When play resumed, Wladamir Pinto was brought in to pitch, and it didn’t go well. A double, walk, and sac fly resulted in three more runs for the Cubs, and a 6-2 lead.

    A pair of walks to start the bottom of the ninth gave some good vibes, but they were quickly erased by a double-play ball from Steer, and a strikeout from Cave to end the game.

    The Saints got multi-hit efforts from Beckham (2-for-4, RBI, K) and Jermaine Palacios (2-for-4, 2 K). As a team, they were 1-for-9 with runners in scoring position and left nine men on base.

    WIND SURGE WISDOM
    NW Arkansas 3, Wichita 9
    Box Score

    Wichita took the lead early and never looked back in this one, putting it well out of reach late.

    Blayne Enlow was given the start after being activated from the injured list and pitched the first two innings. He faced the minimum and allowed just a walk, and struck out one. Simeon Woods Richardson joined him on the return from the IL, and went the next two innings, allowing one hit and striking out two.

    The Wind Surge had taken a 2-0 lead in the first inning thanks to a two-run home run from Chris Williams, his 18th of the season. The game was relatively quiet from there until the seventh, when Wichita extended their lead to 5-0 thanks to a three-run bomb from Cole Sturgeon.

    They tacked on four more in the eighth thanks to a two-run single from Christian Encarnacion-Strand, sac fly from Williams, and RBI double from Andrew Bechtold

    After Enlow and Woods Richardson were done, Cody Laweryson (3 IP, 4 H, BB, 2 K), Alex Phillips (2/3 IP, 3 H, ER, BB, K), and Denny Bentley (1 1/3 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, BB, K) finished off the win for Wichita.

    Encarnacion-Strand (2-for-4, 2 R, 2 RBI, K), Sturgeon (2-for-3, R, HR, 3 RBI, 2 BB), Bechtold (2-for-4, 2B, RBI, BB, K), and Nash Knight (2-for-3, R, BB, K) each had two hits in the win. Out of the leadoff spot, Edouard Julien went 1-for-4, scored two runs, and drew a walk.

    KERNELS NUGGETS
    Cedar Rapids 10, Wisconsin 4
    Box Score

    The Kernels fell behind 4-1 through four innings in this one but came back big late to take care of the Timber Rattlers.

    John Stankiewicz made the start and completed three innings, allowing two earned runs on four hits and two walks, while striking out two. While warming up for the fourth inning, he appeared to suffer an injury and had to leave the game. Tyler Palm replaced him and went the next two innings. He allowed two runs of his own on two hits and two walks.

    Cedar Rapids got on the scoreboard first in the opening frame, when Yunior Severino doubled, and a relay throw got away from the shortstop allowing Aaron Sabato, who had drawn a walk, to scamper home. They didn’t score again until the sixth, and that’s when the tides began to turn.

    They closed the gap to 4-3 thanks to a Severino two-run homer. They tied it at four in the seventh on a sac fly from Will Holland to score Wander Javier, who had led off the inning with a double. They took a 5-4 lead in the eighth when, you guessed it, Severino added another RBI double to his ledger.

    Orlando Rodriguez (2 IP, 3 H, 2 K), Hunter McMahon (1 IP, 2 K), and Jon Olsen (1 IP, 2 K) combined to shutout Wisconsin after the fourth inning.

    In the ninth, the Kernels blew it wide open thanks to some wild pitching, and a big blast from one of their sluggers. Javier led off with a single, then a pair of walks and a hit by pitch scored the first run, and left the bases loaded for Sabato. He cleared them on a 3-1 pitch, sending a 436-foot blast out of the stadium in dead center to put an exclamation on the win.

    Sabato finished 1-for-3, but reached base three times and scored three runs, in addition to the grand slam. Severino drove in four with his 3-for-5 night, including two doubles and a home run of his own. Javier also chipped in two hits, including a double, drew a walk, and scored two runs (don’t look now, but Javier has an .870 OPS since the start of June).

    MUSSEL MATTERS
    Tampa 7, Fort Myers 2 (10 innings)
    Box Score

    Jaylen Nowlin took the mound for the Mighty Mussels and was solid over his five innings. He allowed two runs on five hits and one walk while striking out five. Both runs came in the third inning, in which he allowed three singles. Jackson Hicks pitched two scoreless innings of relief, walking one and striking out three. He was followed by John Wilson who got them to extra innings with two scoreless frames. Back out for the tenth, however, he was charged with three earned runs on two hits and two walks, striking out one in his 2 2/3 innings.

    The Fort Myers lineup was actually being no-hit through six innings, but Noah Miller finally led off the seventh with a single to end that bid. He was caught stealing during the next at-bat, but Keoni Cavaco added a single of his own and two players were hit by pitches to load the bases, but they weren’t able to cash in.

    In the bottom of the ninth, it was again Miller getting a rally started, as he drew a leadoff walk. Cavaco and Kala’i Rosario then each followed with a single to get the Mighty Mussels on the board, before a pair of groundouts were enough to get Cavaco home to tie the game and send it to extra innings.

    But it unraveled pretty quickly for Wilson on the mound, and Johnathan Lavallee wasn’t able to limit the damage either, allowing two hits, a walk, and two runs (one earned) of his own as they fell behind 7-2.

    Cavaco’s two hits led the offense, who had just four hits on the night as a team. They were 1-for-9 with runners in scoring position and left only six men on base for the game.

    COMPLEX CHRONICLES
    FCL Braves 2, FCL Twins 5 (6+ innings)
    Box Score

    There were several games in the Florida Complex League on Tuesday that were affected by rain, and the Twins game was called official after being suspended in the top of the seventh.

    Brayan Medina pitched the first four innings, allowing two runs on a homer in the first inning, but didn’t allow any other damage after that, retiring 11 to finish his outing. He walked none and struck out four. Ryan Horstman (1 IP, K), Zaquiel Puentes (1 IP, 2 BB), and Yon Landaeta (2 BB) made appearances out of the bullpen.

    The Twins tied the game in the second inning, thanks to a two-run double from Ismael Perez. In the third, Danny De Andrade put them in front for good with a solo home run, his second of the season. Perez added another RBI double in the fourth, then a sac fly in the sixth to cap the scoring before the game was called. 

    Perez (2-for-2, 2 2B, 4 RBI) and Gregory Duran (2-for-2, R, BB) each had two hits in the win.

    DOMINICAN DAILIES
    DSL Twins 3, DSL Colorado 6
    Box Score

    The Twins got a solid start from right-hander Miguel Olivares, who finished five scoreless innings and left with his team-leading 3-0. He allowed just one hit, walked two, and struck out three. Relievers Oscar Paredes (2 IP, 2 H, 2 ER, BB, K) and Leonardo Lugo (2/3 IP, 2 H, 4 ER, 2 BB, K) combined to allow six runs and Colorado to come back. Jose Brito got the last out of the game for the Twins.

    Leading the lineup was Jose Rodriguez, who went 2-for-4 including a two-run home run, his ninth of the season. Bryan Acuna also had two hits, including a double, and stole a base.

    TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS OF THE DAY
    Pitcher of the Day - Devin Smeltzer, St. Paul Saints (5 IP, 4 H, ER, BB, 6 K)
    Hitter of the Day - Yunior Severino, Cedar Rapids Kernels (3-for-5, R, 2 2B, HR, 4 RBI, K)

    PROSPECT SUMMARY
    #4 - Simeon Woods Richardson (Wichita) - 2 IP, H, 2 K
    #6 - Spencer Steer (St. Paul) - 1-for-4, R, BB
    #8 - Noah Miller (Fort Myers) - 1-for-3, R, BB, K
    #12 - Matt Wallner (St. Paul) - 1-for-4, 2 K
    #13 - Blayne Enlow (Wichita) - 2 IP, BB, K
    #15 - Edouard Julien (Wichita) - 1-for-4, 2 R, BB
    #16 - Christian Encarnacion-Strand (Wichita) - 2-for-4, 2 R, 2 RBI, K

    WEDNESDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS
    Iowa @ St. Paul (1:07 PM CDT) - RHP Aaron Sanchez (3-1, 4.50 ERA)
    NW Arkansas @ Wichita (7:05 PM CDT) - RHP Casey Legumina
    Cedar Rapids @ Wisconsin (12:10 PM CDT) - TBD
    Tampa @ Fort Myers, Game 1 (3:30 PM CDT) - RHP Pierson Ohl (4-5, 4.37 ERA)
    Tampa @ Fort Myers, Game 2 - TBD
    DSL Cardinals @ DSL Twins (10:00 AM CDT) - TBD

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

     

     

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    Short but nice returns from the IL for Enlow and SWR. CES just hits, at every level. Great game from Severino as well. 

    Should be a lot of changes to these rosters in August - trades, moves to cover holes from trades, and maybe some draft picks being assigned but it seems the Twins really ease these players in slowly.

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    Exciting day seeing both Enlow and SW-R back on the hill for Wichita, with solid results.

    Also great seeing some production from two former first round picks, Sabato and Cavaco, following their more than disappointing beginnings to their careers.  Likewise, great seeing Acuna hitting very well down in the DSL after a rough first month or so.

    Saw in the Strib that 16 of the Twins 19 draft picks have signed.  The only three that haven't were the Alabama pitcher taken in the 19th round and the two high school kids drafted late.  Didn't comment on who received what bonuses or if the Twins were over their dollar pool.  Its a bit disappointing that the Draft Tracker here at Twins Daily went away the other day and we can't find this information on Twins Daily...or at least I can't find it.

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    Some observations from the saints game :

    Sisk’s delivery is pretty weird, and fun to watch

    Hellman is tiny! His shoulders are so narrow. 
     

    Palacios can really field making a great diving catch. Him and Beckham look really good at the plate. 
     

    saints really do out on a good show

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    11 minutes ago, roger said:

    Saw in the Strib that 16 of the Twins 19 draft picks have signed.  The only three that haven't were the Alabama pitcher taken in the 19th round and the two high school kids drafted late.  Didn't comment on who received what bonuses or if the Twins were over their dollar pool.  Its a bit disappointing that the Draft Tracker here at Twins Daily went away the other day and we can't find this information on Twins Daily...or at least I can't find it.

    You can find the tracker under the triple-bar menu and "Twins Resources" sub-menu.  Not the most accessible, there ought to be some more prominent way to get there.  I'm personally much more interested in concrete information vs trade rumors that mostly end up being meaningless.

    At any rate, the tracker has the first 18 of 20 picks signing, and it also states that the last two already announced their intentions to go/go back to school.  So the signings are done, just mostly not announced.  

    There are only 5 bonuses listed so far, the widely reported $5,675k for Lee, $1,825k for Prielipp, $1,002k for Schobel, $250k for Ortega, and $140k for Lewis.  The last two make up about $100k of the $400k+ overslot for the first two picks.  I think the rest are expected to be at or below slot, and they are already less than 5% overslot, so anything else under slot is really just to reduce the tax.

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    I've been trying to figure out what has made Laweryson so effective this year, and I think hitters must have trouble picking the ball up out of his hand.  He's got a funky delivery with his glove flicking up in front of him, and the ball probably comes out from right behind the glove.

    Otherwise his fastball is only 89-92, though he gets some swings and misses on it probably in large part due to deception, and I think he was featuring a low 80s curve and low 80s changeup last night.  He also did benefit from two nice throwing plays from his defense last night and very likely would have given up at least a run otherwise.

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    40 minutes ago, 2wins87 said:

    You can find the tracker under the triple-bar menu and "Twins Resources" sub-menu.  Not the most accessible, there ought to be some more prominent way to get there.  I'm personally much more interested in concrete information vs trade rumors that mostly end up being meaningless.

    At any rate, the tracker has the first 18 of 20 picks signing, and it also states that the last two already announced their intentions to go/go back to school.  So the signings are done, just mostly not announced.  

    There are only 5 bonuses listed so far, the widely reported $5,675k for Lee, $1,825k for Prielipp, $1,002k for Schobel, $250k for Ortega, and $140k for Lewis.  The last two make up about $100k of the $400k+ overslot for the first two picks.  I think the rest are expected to be at or below slot, and they are already less than 5% overslot, so anything else under slot is really just to reduce the tax.

    Thanks a lot 2wins87, really appreciate it.  Was able to find the draft tracker and depending on the difference between Prielipp's tweet and the amounts listed as slot they appear to be less than $400k over.  Assuming neither of the catchers taken 11 and 12 are over $125k, they should be able to get the overage down to minimal or even under the pool when all the bonuses become known.  

    With that said, very interesting draft.  Personally see the top two picks as two young men who can make a difference several years down the road...a big difference.  I will restate what I said the other day that I remain hopeful that Prielipp becomes the Twins version of Chris Sale.  Don't have a clue about the rest of the group taken between the fourth and tenth rounds, but if one or two someday plays in the big leagues that isn't all that different than had they drafted players ranked around where they picked.  Thanks again for the road map on how to find this information.

    Would also like to comment that I am shocked that Prielipp signed for less than $2M.  Considering how highly he was thought of pre-injury, believed it would take more than $2M, way more, to get him signed.  On the other hand, Tomah is so close to the Twins Cities and more than $1.8M in his checking account is sure as heck nice for a 21 year old kid...you know the old "bird in the hand" theory.

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