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Matt Braun

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  1. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from operation mindcrime for an article, The Twins Shouldn't Spend (Much) On Starting Pitching This Offseason   
    (For the record, I did not intend for this to be a pseudo-response to Nick Nelson’s article from the other day, but it worked out like that.)
    In all likelihood, Kenta Maeda’s Tommy John surgery has ended any chance he has of pitching to any significant degree in 2022. There remains an outside chance that he can return in nine months, but even that heavily optimistic prediction shortens his 2022 season. Because of this, the potential Twins starting rotation in 2022 as of this very moment will consist solely of players with little MLB playing time and John Gant. And John Gant is not a starter. You, yes, you, my good reader, have about as much playing time as any of these other guys. Sure, Bailey Ober has flashed some ability; but the names after him are either questionable or dreadful. It is an unsustainable rotation. The natural thought would be then to sign an entire stable of starters. Just line up pitchers and send them through in such rapid fashion that FDR’s 100 days would appear to have run at a snail’s pace. 
    But this would not be a good idea. First, which teams have built a successful starting rotation on such short notice? Yes, the Giants have found success this season with this method, but they are the exceptions. Look down the list of the top rotations by fWAR. Almost every team has a foundation of starters who were either developed internally or acquired before this last off-season. Teams like the Giants are relatively rare in building a starting rotation; most great units require a more solid base. The Twins, by comparison, would have to sign four starters (or three and pray that someone fixed Randy Dobnak) and assume that Bailey Ober will be available for 160+ quality innings next season. Not a great plan.
    Secondly, let’s think big picture. What good would a patchwork rotation be in 2022? There remain significant questions regarding the stability of this current core of players. The central nucleus of names is getting older. Considering that this same group of players has struggled early in 2021, why should we believe the situation will suddenly be any better? Will Miguel Sanó abruptly learn plate discipline? Will Max Kepler’s BABIP finally go above .250? I think not. The moves made by the front office signal to me that they do not plan on seriously competing until 2023. They traded José Berríos, a starter under control for 2022, for prospects. Yes, it was also because the deal was great for them, but the main driver, I believe, was a fundamental belief that this team, as currently constructed, will come up short in any effort in 2022 without heavenly intervention. Why else would they also peddle core players like Byron Buxton and Kepler? 
    One of the other main tenants in the belief of a 2022 surrender is the prospect situation. It isn’t the lack of quality of prospects; they have those. It’s when they should make their MLB debuts. According to MLB.com, nine of their top 10 prospects will likely debut this year or next year. According to Fangraphs, it is nine of 11. Neither of these lists includes Alex Kirilloff and Trevor Larnach, who, while no longer prospects, will become long-term players in their own right who can (and will) replace current names. These soon-to-be-Twins reflect a conscious effort to have 2022 be a messy season in which the Twins can figure out which players will contribute in 2022 and beyond. Call up all the kids, see what they can do, then decide from there. There will be no competing next season.
    Now, while this should prevent the Twins from going all-in on starters, they should not utterly abstain from signing. They should target a younger long-term arm like Jon Gray, Eduardo Rodriguez, or even a more prominent name like Marcus Stroman. These players can bring an essential veteran presence while not presenting the same risks that an older (but probably better) pitcher like Zack Greinke or Justin Verlander will have. If the team wants to sign a player of that magnitude, it makes more sense to do so after 2022, when the genetic makeup of the team makes more sense. 
    This line of thought does raise one more important question. If the team only signs one major starter, where does the rest of the money go? Their theoretical spending limit will be significant after this season. While I would love to give Mr. Pohlad a chance to purchase another absurd yacht or buy off a state senator or something, I don’t believe that money should go to waste. Perhaps the team could look towards signing one of the many All-Star shortstops available this off-season or decide to hand out an early extension to one of their numerous pre-arb players. I know that advocating for minimal movement on the rotation front while inking a high-caliber position player to a long-term deal seems like a strange idea, and it is. The key phrase is “long-term”; I’m thinking about building a better 2023 team, not a better 2022 team, and a burnt contract year is just the cost of investing. 
    I get it, though. This team has not won a playoff game since the Bush administration, and it feels that it may be asking the world of some to hold off another season before diving headfirst back into the fray. No one wants to do that. This idea comes from the same desire that every other Twins fan possesses; we want this team to succeed. We want to finally shed the pressure that is years of unmatched playoff ineptitude. All I am asking is that the team realizes the poor situation that 2022 will likely be and instead decide to take a better-calculated shot at playoff success with a more solid foundation underneath them. What good will one more poorly constructed hopeful playoff run do? Plan for a better future. 
  2. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from ToddlerHarmon for an article, The Twins Shouldn't Spend (Much) On Starting Pitching This Offseason   
    (For the record, I did not intend for this to be a pseudo-response to Nick Nelson’s article from the other day, but it worked out like that.)
    In all likelihood, Kenta Maeda’s Tommy John surgery has ended any chance he has of pitching to any significant degree in 2022. There remains an outside chance that he can return in nine months, but even that heavily optimistic prediction shortens his 2022 season. Because of this, the potential Twins starting rotation in 2022 as of this very moment will consist solely of players with little MLB playing time and John Gant. And John Gant is not a starter. You, yes, you, my good reader, have about as much playing time as any of these other guys. Sure, Bailey Ober has flashed some ability; but the names after him are either questionable or dreadful. It is an unsustainable rotation. The natural thought would be then to sign an entire stable of starters. Just line up pitchers and send them through in such rapid fashion that FDR’s 100 days would appear to have run at a snail’s pace. 
    But this would not be a good idea. First, which teams have built a successful starting rotation on such short notice? Yes, the Giants have found success this season with this method, but they are the exceptions. Look down the list of the top rotations by fWAR. Almost every team has a foundation of starters who were either developed internally or acquired before this last off-season. Teams like the Giants are relatively rare in building a starting rotation; most great units require a more solid base. The Twins, by comparison, would have to sign four starters (or three and pray that someone fixed Randy Dobnak) and assume that Bailey Ober will be available for 160+ quality innings next season. Not a great plan.
    Secondly, let’s think big picture. What good would a patchwork rotation be in 2022? There remain significant questions regarding the stability of this current core of players. The central nucleus of names is getting older. Considering that this same group of players has struggled early in 2021, why should we believe the situation will suddenly be any better? Will Miguel Sanó abruptly learn plate discipline? Will Max Kepler’s BABIP finally go above .250? I think not. The moves made by the front office signal to me that they do not plan on seriously competing until 2023. They traded José Berríos, a starter under control for 2022, for prospects. Yes, it was also because the deal was great for them, but the main driver, I believe, was a fundamental belief that this team, as currently constructed, will come up short in any effort in 2022 without heavenly intervention. Why else would they also peddle core players like Byron Buxton and Kepler? 
    One of the other main tenants in the belief of a 2022 surrender is the prospect situation. It isn’t the lack of quality of prospects; they have those. It’s when they should make their MLB debuts. According to MLB.com, nine of their top 10 prospects will likely debut this year or next year. According to Fangraphs, it is nine of 11. Neither of these lists includes Alex Kirilloff and Trevor Larnach, who, while no longer prospects, will become long-term players in their own right who can (and will) replace current names. These soon-to-be-Twins reflect a conscious effort to have 2022 be a messy season in which the Twins can figure out which players will contribute in 2022 and beyond. Call up all the kids, see what they can do, then decide from there. There will be no competing next season.
    Now, while this should prevent the Twins from going all-in on starters, they should not utterly abstain from signing. They should target a younger long-term arm like Jon Gray, Eduardo Rodriguez, or even a more prominent name like Marcus Stroman. These players can bring an essential veteran presence while not presenting the same risks that an older (but probably better) pitcher like Zack Greinke or Justin Verlander will have. If the team wants to sign a player of that magnitude, it makes more sense to do so after 2022, when the genetic makeup of the team makes more sense. 
    This line of thought does raise one more important question. If the team only signs one major starter, where does the rest of the money go? Their theoretical spending limit will be significant after this season. While I would love to give Mr. Pohlad a chance to purchase another absurd yacht or buy off a state senator or something, I don’t believe that money should go to waste. Perhaps the team could look towards signing one of the many All-Star shortstops available this off-season or decide to hand out an early extension to one of their numerous pre-arb players. I know that advocating for minimal movement on the rotation front while inking a high-caliber position player to a long-term deal seems like a strange idea, and it is. The key phrase is “long-term”; I’m thinking about building a better 2023 team, not a better 2022 team, and a burnt contract year is just the cost of investing. 
    I get it, though. This team has not won a playoff game since the Bush administration, and it feels that it may be asking the world of some to hold off another season before diving headfirst back into the fray. No one wants to do that. This idea comes from the same desire that every other Twins fan possesses; we want this team to succeed. We want to finally shed the pressure that is years of unmatched playoff ineptitude. All I am asking is that the team realizes the poor situation that 2022 will likely be and instead decide to take a better-calculated shot at playoff success with a more solid foundation underneath them. What good will one more poorly constructed hopeful playoff run do? Plan for a better future. 
  3. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from alphanumeric for an article, The Twins Shouldn't Spend (Much) On Starting Pitching This Offseason   
    (For the record, I did not intend for this to be a pseudo-response to Nick Nelson’s article from the other day, but it worked out like that.)
    In all likelihood, Kenta Maeda’s Tommy John surgery has ended any chance he has of pitching to any significant degree in 2022. There remains an outside chance that he can return in nine months, but even that heavily optimistic prediction shortens his 2022 season. Because of this, the potential Twins starting rotation in 2022 as of this very moment will consist solely of players with little MLB playing time and John Gant. And John Gant is not a starter. You, yes, you, my good reader, have about as much playing time as any of these other guys. Sure, Bailey Ober has flashed some ability; but the names after him are either questionable or dreadful. It is an unsustainable rotation. The natural thought would be then to sign an entire stable of starters. Just line up pitchers and send them through in such rapid fashion that FDR’s 100 days would appear to have run at a snail’s pace. 
    But this would not be a good idea. First, which teams have built a successful starting rotation on such short notice? Yes, the Giants have found success this season with this method, but they are the exceptions. Look down the list of the top rotations by fWAR. Almost every team has a foundation of starters who were either developed internally or acquired before this last off-season. Teams like the Giants are relatively rare in building a starting rotation; most great units require a more solid base. The Twins, by comparison, would have to sign four starters (or three and pray that someone fixed Randy Dobnak) and assume that Bailey Ober will be available for 160+ quality innings next season. Not a great plan.
    Secondly, let’s think big picture. What good would a patchwork rotation be in 2022? There remain significant questions regarding the stability of this current core of players. The central nucleus of names is getting older. Considering that this same group of players has struggled early in 2021, why should we believe the situation will suddenly be any better? Will Miguel Sanó abruptly learn plate discipline? Will Max Kepler’s BABIP finally go above .250? I think not. The moves made by the front office signal to me that they do not plan on seriously competing until 2023. They traded José Berríos, a starter under control for 2022, for prospects. Yes, it was also because the deal was great for them, but the main driver, I believe, was a fundamental belief that this team, as currently constructed, will come up short in any effort in 2022 without heavenly intervention. Why else would they also peddle core players like Byron Buxton and Kepler? 
    One of the other main tenants in the belief of a 2022 surrender is the prospect situation. It isn’t the lack of quality of prospects; they have those. It’s when they should make their MLB debuts. According to MLB.com, nine of their top 10 prospects will likely debut this year or next year. According to Fangraphs, it is nine of 11. Neither of these lists includes Alex Kirilloff and Trevor Larnach, who, while no longer prospects, will become long-term players in their own right who can (and will) replace current names. These soon-to-be-Twins reflect a conscious effort to have 2022 be a messy season in which the Twins can figure out which players will contribute in 2022 and beyond. Call up all the kids, see what they can do, then decide from there. There will be no competing next season.
    Now, while this should prevent the Twins from going all-in on starters, they should not utterly abstain from signing. They should target a younger long-term arm like Jon Gray, Eduardo Rodriguez, or even a more prominent name like Marcus Stroman. These players can bring an essential veteran presence while not presenting the same risks that an older (but probably better) pitcher like Zack Greinke or Justin Verlander will have. If the team wants to sign a player of that magnitude, it makes more sense to do so after 2022, when the genetic makeup of the team makes more sense. 
    This line of thought does raise one more important question. If the team only signs one major starter, where does the rest of the money go? Their theoretical spending limit will be significant after this season. While I would love to give Mr. Pohlad a chance to purchase another absurd yacht or buy off a state senator or something, I don’t believe that money should go to waste. Perhaps the team could look towards signing one of the many All-Star shortstops available this off-season or decide to hand out an early extension to one of their numerous pre-arb players. I know that advocating for minimal movement on the rotation front while inking a high-caliber position player to a long-term deal seems like a strange idea, and it is. The key phrase is “long-term”; I’m thinking about building a better 2023 team, not a better 2022 team, and a burnt contract year is just the cost of investing. 
    I get it, though. This team has not won a playoff game since the Bush administration, and it feels that it may be asking the world of some to hold off another season before diving headfirst back into the fray. No one wants to do that. This idea comes from the same desire that every other Twins fan possesses; we want this team to succeed. We want to finally shed the pressure that is years of unmatched playoff ineptitude. All I am asking is that the team realizes the poor situation that 2022 will likely be and instead decide to take a better-calculated shot at playoff success with a more solid foundation underneath them. What good will one more poorly constructed hopeful playoff run do? Plan for a better future. 
  4. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from operation mindcrime for an article, Minor League Report 8/28 Offensive Explosions and A Curfew-ed Game   
    TRANSACTIONS
    RHP Miguel Rodriguez reinstated from 7-day IL at A Fort Myers
    RHP Ramon Pineda transferred from FCL Twins to A Fort Myers
    Saints Sentinel
    St. Paul 9, Toledo 9 (Paused game)
    Box Score
    Drew Strotman: 2 2/3 IP, 3 H, 6 ER, 6 BB, 2 K
    HR: None
    Multi-hit games: 
    Well, I had a write-up here, but apparently the game ran so late that it was paused due to a curfew. I'll leave the box score link so that people can check it out as they please, but know that the game is not technically finished. Also know that this is the first time I have ever seen something like this happen in a minor league game. Weird stuff.
    Wind Surge Wisdom
    Wichita 13, Tulsa 4
    Box Score
    Cole Sands: 3 IP, 6 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 3 K
    HR: Leobaldo Cabrera (8), Andrew Bechtold (16), Austin Martin (2), Spencer Steer (13)
    Multi-hit games: Spencer Steer (2-for-4, HR, 2B, 4 R, 2 RBI, BB), Austin Martin (3-for-5, HR, 2 R, 3 RBI), 
    Wichita gave Tulsa the business on Saturday.
    ...Oh, I need to say more? (Editor's Note: Yes, please.)
    Here are a few questions: Is it a good thing when eight out of nine of your batters get a hit? Is it a good thing when six different hitters earn an RBI? Is it a good thing when your 1-2 hitters combine for six runs? I’m not a baseball expert, but I tend to think that the answer to all of those questions is yes.
    Tulsa actually had the first lead of the game but a homer by Leobaldo Cabrera put the lead firmly in Wichita’s grasp. They would not let go. With five runs already on the board, Andrew Bechtold demolished a three-run homerun to make it a cruel seven-run lead. With a nine-run lead, Austin Martin clobbered a homer to make it an evil 11-run lead. Finally, with 12 runs on the board, Spencer Steer obliterated a solo shot to add a cherry on top of this battered cake. Tulsa actually out-hit the Wind Surge on Saturday which is objectively hilarious. 
    Cabrera:
    Bechtold:
    Martin:
    Steer:
    Cole Sands allowed only one run over three innings but was inefficient as he tossed 80 pitches in order to do so. From there the combination of Kody Funderburk, Zach Neff, and Hector Lujan took Wichita to the finish line on Saturday.
    Kernels Nuggets
    Cedar Rapids 1, Beloit 6
    Box Score
    Ben Gross: 5 IP, 10 H, 6 ER, 0 BB, 8 K
    HR: None
    Multi-hit games: Daniel Ozoria (2-for-3, RBI)
    Cedar Rapids had the lone offensive dud on Saturday.
    Ben Gross brought the strikeouts, but the Snappers proved resilient, and dropped 10 hits on the starter. It was an all-or-nothing approach that netted Beloit six extra-base hits off of Gross en route to a lead that would never really be challenged.
    The lone Kernels run came thanks to a Daniel Ozoria infield single in the 5th inning. The team put together just six hits on the night, but oddly enough, three of those hits were doubles. 
    In another odd turn, both teams had matching one walk, 14 strikeout performances by their respective pitching staffs (and lineups, technically). But, Beloit bunching their extra-base hits proved to be a wise strategy as they easily beat Cedar Rapids on Saturday.
    Mussel Matters
    Fort Myers 6, Bradenton 8 
    Box Score
    Miguel Rodriguez: 1 IP, 4 H, 4 ER, 3 BB, 0 K
    HR: Jesus Feliz (7)
    Multi-hit games: Jake Rucker (2-for-5, 3 R), Will Holland (3-for-4, 2B, R, RBI)
    Fort Myers was unable to recover from a 4-0 deficit on Saturday.
    Starter Miguel Rodriguez had one to forget. The righty was activated just before the game and more than a bit rusty on Saturday. Allowing three walks over just a single inning more or less speaks for itself. Let’s hope that Rodriguez can get back on the horse the next time he’s called upon.
    To their credit, the Mighty Mussels did not lie down and let the Marauders win this game without a fight. They were down by a score of 7-1 before a burning offensive spirit took hold across the dugout. 
    Jesus Feliz kicked off the rebuttal with a solo homer in the 7th while Will Holland doubled home a run later in the inning. This would be just the first attack. Kyler Fedko unloaded the bases in the 8th with a double that was followed by the classic double error on the part of the Marauders. Unfortunately, the fight would end there. Bradenton plated one more run in the 9th, and Fort Myers fell narrowly short of a victory.
    Casey Legumina provided a strong effort in the loss. He was able to siphon off the bleeding over five strong innings of one-run ball in relief of Rodriguez.
    Complex Chronicles
    The FCL Twins game was suspended in the 8th inning on Saturday. Nash will have the update for you on this game when it is completed on Sunday.
    TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY
    Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Casey Legumina
    Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Spencer Steer 
    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 – Austin Martin (Wichita) - 3-5, HR, 2 R, 3 RBI, K
    #3 – Jordan Balazovic (Wichita) - Did not pitch
    #4 – Simeon Woods Richardson (Wichita) - Did not pitch
    #5 – Jhoan Duran (St. Paul) - Injured List (Right Elbow Strain)
    #6 – Jose Miranda (St. Paul) - Suspended game
    #7 – Joe Ryan (St. Paul) - Did not pitch
    #8 – Matt Canterino (Cedar Rapids) - Injured List (Right Elbow Strain)
    #9 – Chase Petty (Complex) - 
    #10 – Keoni Cavaco (Fort Myers) - Did not play
    #11 – Josh Winder (St. Paul) - Injured List (Right Shoulder Impingement)
    #12 – Matt Wallner (Cedar Rapids) - Did not play
    #13 – Gilberto Celestino (St. Paul) - Suspended game
    #14 – Drew Strotman (St. Paul) - 2 2/3 IP, 3 H, 6 ER, 6 BB, 2 K
    #15 – Noah Miller (FCL Twins) - 1-3, RBI, BB, 2 K
    #16 – Brent Rooker (Minnesota) - 0-1, R, BB, K
    #17 – Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) - Out for Season (Tommy John surgery)
    #18 – Misael Urbina (Fort Myers) - 1-3, 2 BB
    #19 – Cole Sands (Wichita) - 3 IP, 6 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 3 K
    #20 – Spencer Steer (Wichita) - 2-4, HR, 2B, 4 R, 2 RBI, BB
    SUNDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS
    Bradenton @ Fort Myers (10:00 AM) RHP Landon Leach
    St. Paul @ Toledo (12:05 PM) RHP Beau Burrows
    Tulsa @ Wichita (12:05 PM) RHP Austin Schulfer
    Cedar Rapids @ Beloit (1:05 PM) TBD
  5. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from mikelink45 for an article, Getting Jhoan Duran Back on Track   
    The team has not yet announced that Duran will miss the rest of 2021, but, given the nature of elbow strains, I find it difficult to see him returning to the mound in any meaningful way. There's just no decent reason to push him. Now, 2022 will be about rebuilding (essentially) two years of missed time while juggling playing time at both the AAA and major league levels. That sounds like quite a challenge. Fortunately, there is another player that the Twins can mimic in how they build Duran back up. Unfortunately, that player is on a rival squad.
    Michael Kopech; you probably know him. The White Sox brought him over with Yoán Moncada when they traded scissors-enthusiast Chris Sale to Boston as a kick-start to their rebuild. Kopech debuted in 2018 with mild success-barely any walks, but a ton of homers-and emerged as something of a budding ace. The following two years were less kind. Kopech missed all of 2019 with Tommy John surgery, and then he opted out of the 2020 season for 'personal reasons'. Kopech was still more-or-less as talented as when he debuted, but he faced an uphill climb in 2021 to build back the stamina needed to be a successful starter. What has been the plan?
    Use him as a reliever, of course. Kopech has started just three games against 27 relief appearances as of August 23rd. Oddly enough, Chicago immediately threw Kopech into the heat of battle-eight of his first ten appearances lasted longer than one inning-before reining him in afterward. Since May 18th, he has thrown multiple innings just three times, with none of those outings lasting longer than two innings. 
    Perhaps part of that is caution. MLB teams are notorious for treating young pitchers like buried treasure, but I think there's a somewhat different philosophy at play here. Yes, the White Sox want to be careful with Kopech, but they want to get him cheap playing time. Relief pitchers are much easier to command because the manager can control the situations they find themselves in. Do you want to avoid using a guy in a high-leverage context? Then don't. Do you want to get him multiple innings? Go right ahead. The reliever moniker allows the team to be flexible in a way that starters cannot be.
    I believe that the Twins should follow suit with Duran. His lack of innings perfectly mirrors the situation Kopech was in, and the 2021 season has been fantastic for Chicago's righty (I wrote this sentence before he gave up five earned runs in one inning, whoops.) The team should use Duran as a sort of swingman or as a piggybacker at the major league level as soon as they can. Forcing Duran to burn time at AAA in a vain effort to build back his stamina will only cause the team to avoid utilizing one of their most exciting pitching prospects.
    "But Matt," you say, "why not just keep him as a starter in AAA? Why force him into the bullpen? What difference does it make?" These are fair questions. 
    The Twins will strongly limit Duran in 2022. My guess is 80 innings-it could be more but likely not by much. Why, then, should Duran waste innings at AAA when he could instead get accustomed to major league talent while also building back his innings? The team will not be competitive in 2022, so Duran taking his occasional licks will hurt no one.
    Keep in mind that Duran will be 24 when the 2022 season begins, and if they keep him as a starter that season, he likely will not be up in any significant fashion until 2023, when he's 25. That's far from old, but he's getting to the point where his prospect status needs to become actual tangible major league ability. The Twins should be looking solely to prep Duran for 2023, and I see a spot in the major league bullpen as a better alternative than more time at AAA.
  6. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from wabene for an article, Getting Jhoan Duran Back on Track   
    The team has not yet announced that Duran will miss the rest of 2021, but, given the nature of elbow strains, I find it difficult to see him returning to the mound in any meaningful way. There's just no decent reason to push him. Now, 2022 will be about rebuilding (essentially) two years of missed time while juggling playing time at both the AAA and major league levels. That sounds like quite a challenge. Fortunately, there is another player that the Twins can mimic in how they build Duran back up. Unfortunately, that player is on a rival squad.
    Michael Kopech; you probably know him. The White Sox brought him over with Yoán Moncada when they traded scissors-enthusiast Chris Sale to Boston as a kick-start to their rebuild. Kopech debuted in 2018 with mild success-barely any walks, but a ton of homers-and emerged as something of a budding ace. The following two years were less kind. Kopech missed all of 2019 with Tommy John surgery, and then he opted out of the 2020 season for 'personal reasons'. Kopech was still more-or-less as talented as when he debuted, but he faced an uphill climb in 2021 to build back the stamina needed to be a successful starter. What has been the plan?
    Use him as a reliever, of course. Kopech has started just three games against 27 relief appearances as of August 23rd. Oddly enough, Chicago immediately threw Kopech into the heat of battle-eight of his first ten appearances lasted longer than one inning-before reining him in afterward. Since May 18th, he has thrown multiple innings just three times, with none of those outings lasting longer than two innings. 
    Perhaps part of that is caution. MLB teams are notorious for treating young pitchers like buried treasure, but I think there's a somewhat different philosophy at play here. Yes, the White Sox want to be careful with Kopech, but they want to get him cheap playing time. Relief pitchers are much easier to command because the manager can control the situations they find themselves in. Do you want to avoid using a guy in a high-leverage context? Then don't. Do you want to get him multiple innings? Go right ahead. The reliever moniker allows the team to be flexible in a way that starters cannot be.
    I believe that the Twins should follow suit with Duran. His lack of innings perfectly mirrors the situation Kopech was in, and the 2021 season has been fantastic for Chicago's righty (I wrote this sentence before he gave up five earned runs in one inning, whoops.) The team should use Duran as a sort of swingman or as a piggybacker at the major league level as soon as they can. Forcing Duran to burn time at AAA in a vain effort to build back his stamina will only cause the team to avoid utilizing one of their most exciting pitching prospects.
    "But Matt," you say, "why not just keep him as a starter in AAA? Why force him into the bullpen? What difference does it make?" These are fair questions. 
    The Twins will strongly limit Duran in 2022. My guess is 80 innings-it could be more but likely not by much. Why, then, should Duran waste innings at AAA when he could instead get accustomed to major league talent while also building back his innings? The team will not be competitive in 2022, so Duran taking his occasional licks will hurt no one.
    Keep in mind that Duran will be 24 when the 2022 season begins, and if they keep him as a starter that season, he likely will not be up in any significant fashion until 2023, when he's 25. That's far from old, but he's getting to the point where his prospect status needs to become actual tangible major league ability. The Twins should be looking solely to prep Duran for 2023, and I see a spot in the major league bullpen as a better alternative than more time at AAA.
  7. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from DocBauer for an article, Getting Jhoan Duran Back on Track   
    The team has not yet announced that Duran will miss the rest of 2021, but, given the nature of elbow strains, I find it difficult to see him returning to the mound in any meaningful way. There's just no decent reason to push him. Now, 2022 will be about rebuilding (essentially) two years of missed time while juggling playing time at both the AAA and major league levels. That sounds like quite a challenge. Fortunately, there is another player that the Twins can mimic in how they build Duran back up. Unfortunately, that player is on a rival squad.
    Michael Kopech; you probably know him. The White Sox brought him over with Yoán Moncada when they traded scissors-enthusiast Chris Sale to Boston as a kick-start to their rebuild. Kopech debuted in 2018 with mild success-barely any walks, but a ton of homers-and emerged as something of a budding ace. The following two years were less kind. Kopech missed all of 2019 with Tommy John surgery, and then he opted out of the 2020 season for 'personal reasons'. Kopech was still more-or-less as talented as when he debuted, but he faced an uphill climb in 2021 to build back the stamina needed to be a successful starter. What has been the plan?
    Use him as a reliever, of course. Kopech has started just three games against 27 relief appearances as of August 23rd. Oddly enough, Chicago immediately threw Kopech into the heat of battle-eight of his first ten appearances lasted longer than one inning-before reining him in afterward. Since May 18th, he has thrown multiple innings just three times, with none of those outings lasting longer than two innings. 
    Perhaps part of that is caution. MLB teams are notorious for treating young pitchers like buried treasure, but I think there's a somewhat different philosophy at play here. Yes, the White Sox want to be careful with Kopech, but they want to get him cheap playing time. Relief pitchers are much easier to command because the manager can control the situations they find themselves in. Do you want to avoid using a guy in a high-leverage context? Then don't. Do you want to get him multiple innings? Go right ahead. The reliever moniker allows the team to be flexible in a way that starters cannot be.
    I believe that the Twins should follow suit with Duran. His lack of innings perfectly mirrors the situation Kopech was in, and the 2021 season has been fantastic for Chicago's righty (I wrote this sentence before he gave up five earned runs in one inning, whoops.) The team should use Duran as a sort of swingman or as a piggybacker at the major league level as soon as they can. Forcing Duran to burn time at AAA in a vain effort to build back his stamina will only cause the team to avoid utilizing one of their most exciting pitching prospects.
    "But Matt," you say, "why not just keep him as a starter in AAA? Why force him into the bullpen? What difference does it make?" These are fair questions. 
    The Twins will strongly limit Duran in 2022. My guess is 80 innings-it could be more but likely not by much. Why, then, should Duran waste innings at AAA when he could instead get accustomed to major league talent while also building back his innings? The team will not be competitive in 2022, so Duran taking his occasional licks will hurt no one.
    Keep in mind that Duran will be 24 when the 2022 season begins, and if they keep him as a starter that season, he likely will not be up in any significant fashion until 2023, when he's 25. That's far from old, but he's getting to the point where his prospect status needs to become actual tangible major league ability. The Twins should be looking solely to prep Duran for 2023, and I see a spot in the major league bullpen as a better alternative than more time at AAA.
  8. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from Dman for an article, Getting Jhoan Duran Back on Track   
    The team has not yet announced that Duran will miss the rest of 2021, but, given the nature of elbow strains, I find it difficult to see him returning to the mound in any meaningful way. There's just no decent reason to push him. Now, 2022 will be about rebuilding (essentially) two years of missed time while juggling playing time at both the AAA and major league levels. That sounds like quite a challenge. Fortunately, there is another player that the Twins can mimic in how they build Duran back up. Unfortunately, that player is on a rival squad.
    Michael Kopech; you probably know him. The White Sox brought him over with Yoán Moncada when they traded scissors-enthusiast Chris Sale to Boston as a kick-start to their rebuild. Kopech debuted in 2018 with mild success-barely any walks, but a ton of homers-and emerged as something of a budding ace. The following two years were less kind. Kopech missed all of 2019 with Tommy John surgery, and then he opted out of the 2020 season for 'personal reasons'. Kopech was still more-or-less as talented as when he debuted, but he faced an uphill climb in 2021 to build back the stamina needed to be a successful starter. What has been the plan?
    Use him as a reliever, of course. Kopech has started just three games against 27 relief appearances as of August 23rd. Oddly enough, Chicago immediately threw Kopech into the heat of battle-eight of his first ten appearances lasted longer than one inning-before reining him in afterward. Since May 18th, he has thrown multiple innings just three times, with none of those outings lasting longer than two innings. 
    Perhaps part of that is caution. MLB teams are notorious for treating young pitchers like buried treasure, but I think there's a somewhat different philosophy at play here. Yes, the White Sox want to be careful with Kopech, but they want to get him cheap playing time. Relief pitchers are much easier to command because the manager can control the situations they find themselves in. Do you want to avoid using a guy in a high-leverage context? Then don't. Do you want to get him multiple innings? Go right ahead. The reliever moniker allows the team to be flexible in a way that starters cannot be.
    I believe that the Twins should follow suit with Duran. His lack of innings perfectly mirrors the situation Kopech was in, and the 2021 season has been fantastic for Chicago's righty (I wrote this sentence before he gave up five earned runs in one inning, whoops.) The team should use Duran as a sort of swingman or as a piggybacker at the major league level as soon as they can. Forcing Duran to burn time at AAA in a vain effort to build back his stamina will only cause the team to avoid utilizing one of their most exciting pitching prospects.
    "But Matt," you say, "why not just keep him as a starter in AAA? Why force him into the bullpen? What difference does it make?" These are fair questions. 
    The Twins will strongly limit Duran in 2022. My guess is 80 innings-it could be more but likely not by much. Why, then, should Duran waste innings at AAA when he could instead get accustomed to major league talent while also building back his innings? The team will not be competitive in 2022, so Duran taking his occasional licks will hurt no one.
    Keep in mind that Duran will be 24 when the 2022 season begins, and if they keep him as a starter that season, he likely will not be up in any significant fashion until 2023, when he's 25. That's far from old, but he's getting to the point where his prospect status needs to become actual tangible major league ability. The Twins should be looking solely to prep Duran for 2023, and I see a spot in the major league bullpen as a better alternative than more time at AAA.
  9. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from Dave The Dastardly for an article, Getting Jhoan Duran Back on Track   
    The team has not yet announced that Duran will miss the rest of 2021, but, given the nature of elbow strains, I find it difficult to see him returning to the mound in any meaningful way. There's just no decent reason to push him. Now, 2022 will be about rebuilding (essentially) two years of missed time while juggling playing time at both the AAA and major league levels. That sounds like quite a challenge. Fortunately, there is another player that the Twins can mimic in how they build Duran back up. Unfortunately, that player is on a rival squad.
    Michael Kopech; you probably know him. The White Sox brought him over with Yoán Moncada when they traded scissors-enthusiast Chris Sale to Boston as a kick-start to their rebuild. Kopech debuted in 2018 with mild success-barely any walks, but a ton of homers-and emerged as something of a budding ace. The following two years were less kind. Kopech missed all of 2019 with Tommy John surgery, and then he opted out of the 2020 season for 'personal reasons'. Kopech was still more-or-less as talented as when he debuted, but he faced an uphill climb in 2021 to build back the stamina needed to be a successful starter. What has been the plan?
    Use him as a reliever, of course. Kopech has started just three games against 27 relief appearances as of August 23rd. Oddly enough, Chicago immediately threw Kopech into the heat of battle-eight of his first ten appearances lasted longer than one inning-before reining him in afterward. Since May 18th, he has thrown multiple innings just three times, with none of those outings lasting longer than two innings. 
    Perhaps part of that is caution. MLB teams are notorious for treating young pitchers like buried treasure, but I think there's a somewhat different philosophy at play here. Yes, the White Sox want to be careful with Kopech, but they want to get him cheap playing time. Relief pitchers are much easier to command because the manager can control the situations they find themselves in. Do you want to avoid using a guy in a high-leverage context? Then don't. Do you want to get him multiple innings? Go right ahead. The reliever moniker allows the team to be flexible in a way that starters cannot be.
    I believe that the Twins should follow suit with Duran. His lack of innings perfectly mirrors the situation Kopech was in, and the 2021 season has been fantastic for Chicago's righty (I wrote this sentence before he gave up five earned runs in one inning, whoops.) The team should use Duran as a sort of swingman or as a piggybacker at the major league level as soon as they can. Forcing Duran to burn time at AAA in a vain effort to build back his stamina will only cause the team to avoid utilizing one of their most exciting pitching prospects.
    "But Matt," you say, "why not just keep him as a starter in AAA? Why force him into the bullpen? What difference does it make?" These are fair questions. 
    The Twins will strongly limit Duran in 2022. My guess is 80 innings-it could be more but likely not by much. Why, then, should Duran waste innings at AAA when he could instead get accustomed to major league talent while also building back his innings? The team will not be competitive in 2022, so Duran taking his occasional licks will hurt no one.
    Keep in mind that Duran will be 24 when the 2022 season begins, and if they keep him as a starter that season, he likely will not be up in any significant fashion until 2023, when he's 25. That's far from old, but he's getting to the point where his prospect status needs to become actual tangible major league ability. The Twins should be looking solely to prep Duran for 2023, and I see a spot in the major league bullpen as a better alternative than more time at AAA.
  10. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from ToddlerHarmon for an article, Getting Jhoan Duran Back on Track   
    The team has not yet announced that Duran will miss the rest of 2021, but, given the nature of elbow strains, I find it difficult to see him returning to the mound in any meaningful way. There's just no decent reason to push him. Now, 2022 will be about rebuilding (essentially) two years of missed time while juggling playing time at both the AAA and major league levels. That sounds like quite a challenge. Fortunately, there is another player that the Twins can mimic in how they build Duran back up. Unfortunately, that player is on a rival squad.
    Michael Kopech; you probably know him. The White Sox brought him over with Yoán Moncada when they traded scissors-enthusiast Chris Sale to Boston as a kick-start to their rebuild. Kopech debuted in 2018 with mild success-barely any walks, but a ton of homers-and emerged as something of a budding ace. The following two years were less kind. Kopech missed all of 2019 with Tommy John surgery, and then he opted out of the 2020 season for 'personal reasons'. Kopech was still more-or-less as talented as when he debuted, but he faced an uphill climb in 2021 to build back the stamina needed to be a successful starter. What has been the plan?
    Use him as a reliever, of course. Kopech has started just three games against 27 relief appearances as of August 23rd. Oddly enough, Chicago immediately threw Kopech into the heat of battle-eight of his first ten appearances lasted longer than one inning-before reining him in afterward. Since May 18th, he has thrown multiple innings just three times, with none of those outings lasting longer than two innings. 
    Perhaps part of that is caution. MLB teams are notorious for treating young pitchers like buried treasure, but I think there's a somewhat different philosophy at play here. Yes, the White Sox want to be careful with Kopech, but they want to get him cheap playing time. Relief pitchers are much easier to command because the manager can control the situations they find themselves in. Do you want to avoid using a guy in a high-leverage context? Then don't. Do you want to get him multiple innings? Go right ahead. The reliever moniker allows the team to be flexible in a way that starters cannot be.
    I believe that the Twins should follow suit with Duran. His lack of innings perfectly mirrors the situation Kopech was in, and the 2021 season has been fantastic for Chicago's righty (I wrote this sentence before he gave up five earned runs in one inning, whoops.) The team should use Duran as a sort of swingman or as a piggybacker at the major league level as soon as they can. Forcing Duran to burn time at AAA in a vain effort to build back his stamina will only cause the team to avoid utilizing one of their most exciting pitching prospects.
    "But Matt," you say, "why not just keep him as a starter in AAA? Why force him into the bullpen? What difference does it make?" These are fair questions. 
    The Twins will strongly limit Duran in 2022. My guess is 80 innings-it could be more but likely not by much. Why, then, should Duran waste innings at AAA when he could instead get accustomed to major league talent while also building back his innings? The team will not be competitive in 2022, so Duran taking his occasional licks will hurt no one.
    Keep in mind that Duran will be 24 when the 2022 season begins, and if they keep him as a starter that season, he likely will not be up in any significant fashion until 2023, when he's 25. That's far from old, but he's getting to the point where his prospect status needs to become actual tangible major league ability. The Twins should be looking solely to prep Duran for 2023, and I see a spot in the major league bullpen as a better alternative than more time at AAA.
  11. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from 4twinsJA for an article, Getting Jhoan Duran Back on Track   
    The team has not yet announced that Duran will miss the rest of 2021, but, given the nature of elbow strains, I find it difficult to see him returning to the mound in any meaningful way. There's just no decent reason to push him. Now, 2022 will be about rebuilding (essentially) two years of missed time while juggling playing time at both the AAA and major league levels. That sounds like quite a challenge. Fortunately, there is another player that the Twins can mimic in how they build Duran back up. Unfortunately, that player is on a rival squad.
    Michael Kopech; you probably know him. The White Sox brought him over with Yoán Moncada when they traded scissors-enthusiast Chris Sale to Boston as a kick-start to their rebuild. Kopech debuted in 2018 with mild success-barely any walks, but a ton of homers-and emerged as something of a budding ace. The following two years were less kind. Kopech missed all of 2019 with Tommy John surgery, and then he opted out of the 2020 season for 'personal reasons'. Kopech was still more-or-less as talented as when he debuted, but he faced an uphill climb in 2021 to build back the stamina needed to be a successful starter. What has been the plan?
    Use him as a reliever, of course. Kopech has started just three games against 27 relief appearances as of August 23rd. Oddly enough, Chicago immediately threw Kopech into the heat of battle-eight of his first ten appearances lasted longer than one inning-before reining him in afterward. Since May 18th, he has thrown multiple innings just three times, with none of those outings lasting longer than two innings. 
    Perhaps part of that is caution. MLB teams are notorious for treating young pitchers like buried treasure, but I think there's a somewhat different philosophy at play here. Yes, the White Sox want to be careful with Kopech, but they want to get him cheap playing time. Relief pitchers are much easier to command because the manager can control the situations they find themselves in. Do you want to avoid using a guy in a high-leverage context? Then don't. Do you want to get him multiple innings? Go right ahead. The reliever moniker allows the team to be flexible in a way that starters cannot be.
    I believe that the Twins should follow suit with Duran. His lack of innings perfectly mirrors the situation Kopech was in, and the 2021 season has been fantastic for Chicago's righty (I wrote this sentence before he gave up five earned runs in one inning, whoops.) The team should use Duran as a sort of swingman or as a piggybacker at the major league level as soon as they can. Forcing Duran to burn time at AAA in a vain effort to build back his stamina will only cause the team to avoid utilizing one of their most exciting pitching prospects.
    "But Matt," you say, "why not just keep him as a starter in AAA? Why force him into the bullpen? What difference does it make?" These are fair questions. 
    The Twins will strongly limit Duran in 2022. My guess is 80 innings-it could be more but likely not by much. Why, then, should Duran waste innings at AAA when he could instead get accustomed to major league talent while also building back his innings? The team will not be competitive in 2022, so Duran taking his occasional licks will hurt no one.
    Keep in mind that Duran will be 24 when the 2022 season begins, and if they keep him as a starter that season, he likely will not be up in any significant fashion until 2023, when he's 25. That's far from old, but he's getting to the point where his prospect status needs to become actual tangible major league ability. The Twins should be looking solely to prep Duran for 2023, and I see a spot in the major league bullpen as a better alternative than more time at AAA.
  12. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from operation mindcrime for an article, Minor League Report 8/21 You Have The Right To Be A Hitting Machine   
    TRANSACTIONS
    RHP Matt Canterino placed on the 7-day IL at A+ Cedar Rapids (right elbow strain)
    RHP Breckin Williams placed on the 7-day IL at A+ Cedar Rapids (right shoulder strain)
    LHP Bryan Sammons promoted to AAA St. Paul
    RHP Randy Dobnak assigned to A Fort Myers for a rehab assignment 
    Saints Sentinel
    St. Paul 7, Iowa 4
    Box Score
    Bryan Sammons: 4 2/3 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 3 BB, 2 K
    HR: Jose Miranda (12)
    Multi-hit games: Jose Miranda (4-for-5, HR, 2 R, 2 RBI), Tomás Telis (2-for-4, R)
    Jose Miranda.
    Yeah, usually I begin with the pitcher, but this one is going to be different. Jose Miranda dropped four hits on Saturday, including a home run, and I’m left wondering what in the world he possibly needs to do in order to get called up. I mean, he’s having one of the best minor league seasons these eyes have seen, and the major league team is not doing much of anything at the moment. Figure it out. 
    Speaking of guys that need to be called up, Jovani Moran pitched 2 1/3 innings in relief with one earned run and three strikeouts. He will certainly be up at some point, but whenever that time comes, it’ll already be overdue. 
    Beyond Miranda, the Saints found the 5th inning to be the perfect time to strike. Mark Contereras singled home a run, Drew Maggi brought another run in with a groundout, and a wild pitch scored the final run of the inning. All-in-all, the Saints had six runs on the board.
    Ian Hamilton brought us all home with two clean innings to end the game. Yeah, maybe he walked a guy, but he was just keeping the hitters on their toes. It appears that it worked. 
    Wind Surge Wisdom
    Wichita 2, Springfield 0
    Box Score
    Jordan Balazovic: 6 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 5 BB, 6 K
    HR: None
    Multi-hit games: None
    Wichita’s pitching took care of business on Saturday.
    Jordan Balazovic had an interesting day on the mound. He held the Cardinals scoreless, which is good; but then he walked five batters, which is not good. This is one of those times we just say “we take those” and move on. Details don’t matter.
    Wichita did not score much, but they didn’t need to. Austin Martin plated the first run of the game with an 8th inning single, and Andrew Bechtold brought home the final run with a single of his own in the 9th inning. Honestly, that was it.
     
    But that was all that was needed. After Balazovic’s six innings of work, Adam Lau took the team to the ninth and Erik Manoah Jr. ended it. Those three pitchers combined to allow just five hits total in the entire game. That’ll work. Funny enough, the Wind Surge actually only had four hits. 
    Kernels Nuggets
    Cedar Rapids 5, Wisconsin 12
    Box Score
    Cody Laweryson: 4 2.3 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 0 BB, 7 K
    HR: Matt Wallner (11), Michael Helman (15)
    Multi-hit games: Edouard Julien (2-for-3, 2B, 2 R, 2 BB), Matt Wallner (2-for-5, HR, 2B, 2 R, 2 RBI), Daniel Ozoria (2-for-4)
    The Kernels were unable to come back on Saturday.
    Cody Laweryson put forth an impressive effort with half of his outs coming via the K. He was bogged down by some 4th inning shenanigans that saw a double error play score a run. This was actually not even the only double error play of the game by the Kernels; the 7th inning saw a similar effort that ended up plating a pair of runs. As you will read later, it was not a great day for defense in the system. I hope Laweryson’s fielders bought him one of those real cheesy Hallmark apology cards after the game.
    Despite scoring just three runs, Cedar Rapids brought some firepower. Matt Wallner deposited his 11th homer of the year over the fence while Michael Helman, who suddenly has been possessed by the spirit of Hank Aaron, blasted his 15th home run. The problem was that both of these blasts came without a runner on base.
    Edouard Julien reached base four times because of course he did. I find myself more shocked when he doesn’t get on base multiple times than when he does. I assume that his season OBP is still .600 or something like that. 
    Mussel Matters
    Fort Myers 3, Dunedin 4
    Box Score
    Randy Dobnak: 3 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 K
    HR: None
    Multi-hit games: Charles Mack (2-for-4)
    Well, Randy Dobnak sure came to play on Saturday. The right-hander emerged from his long slumber (or injury) and took the mound for the first time in two months. Using his major league success as well as his right hand, Dobnak completely shut down the Dunedin lineup in just 32 pitches. It’s good to see Dobnak back on the mound; his return will hopefully be a relief for a depleted major league pitching staff.
    On the offensive side of things, Jesus Feliz carried the team. He broke the 0-0 tie in the 5th with a solo homer, before then putting a ball into play in the 7th that brought home two off of an error. That must have been one impressive error. 
    It appears that defense was the Achilles heel for Fort Myers on Saturday. The team had five errors in total (Keoni Cavaco had his 17th error of the year), and it was a Charles Mack throwing error that sent the game-winning runner to third base in the 9th inning. That run was then brought home off an infield single. Hopefully the team can clean it up on Sunday.
    Complex Chronicles
    FCL Twins 5, FCL Red Sox 11
    Box Score
    Develson Aria: 1 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 3 K
    HR: Endy Rodriguez (1)
    Multi-hit games: None
    The FCL Twins lost a rough one to the FCL Red Sox on Saturday.
    A certain swear for poop hit the fan quickly in this effort as the Red Sox plated two runs before fans could even find their seats. Top draft pick, Marcelo Mayer, dropped an RBI single while Bryan Gonzalez singled home another run. In fact, the Red Sox scored 10 times before the Twins plated a single run. 
    In the 5th, Mayer then blasted his first career professional home run. This is far from the first time that we’ve seen a Mayer have multiple hits.
    Alright, let’s get back to talking about the Twins. The team responded to the 10-0 deficit with an impressive gusto. A 6th inning rally brought three runs home while individual runs were then scored in the 7th and 8th, respectively. That 8th inning run came due to Endy Rodriguez’s first home run of the season; so congrats to Rodriguez. The run of, well, runs, was not enough, and the team fell to the Red Sox on Saturday.
    TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY
    Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Jordan Balazovic
    Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Jose Miranda
    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 – Austin Martin (Wichita) - 1-4, RBI
    #3 – Jordan Balazovic (Wichita) – 6 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 5 BB, 6 K
    #4 – Simeon Woods Richardson (Wichita) - Did not pitch
    #5 – Jhoan Duran (St. Paul) - Injured List (Right Elbow Strain)
    #6 – Jose Miranda (St. Paul) - 4-5, HR, 2 R, 2 RBI
    #7 – Joe Ryan (St. Paul) - Did not pitch
    #8 – Matt Canterino (Cedar Rapids) - Injured List (Right Elbow Strain)
    #9 – Chase Petty (Complex) - 
    #10 – Keoni Cavaco (Fort Myers) - 1-5, 3 K
    #11 – Josh Winder (St. Paul) - Injured List (Right Shoulder Impingement)
    #12 – Matt Wallner (Cedar Rapids) - 2-4, HR, 2B, 2 R, 2 RBI, 2 K
    #13 – Gilberto Celestino (St. Paul) - 0-3
    #14 – Drew Strotman (St. Paul) - Did not pitch
    #15 – Noah Miller (FCL Twins) - 1-3, RBI, BB, 2 K
    #16 – Brent Rooker (Minnesota) - Did not play
    #17 – Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) - Out for Season (Tommy John surgery)
    #18 – Misael Urbina (Fort Myers) - 1-4
    #19 – Cole Sands (Wichita) - Did not pitch
    #20 – Spencer Steer (Wichita) - Did not play
    SUNDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS
    Fort Myers @ Dunedin (11:00 AM) RHP Bobby Milacki
    Wisconsin @ Cedar Rapids (1:05 PM) TBD
    Iowa @ St. Paul (1:05 PM) RHP Drew Strotman
    Wichita @ Springfield (4:05 PM) RHP Chris Vallimont
  13. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from operation mindcrime for an article, Twins Minor League Report (8/14): Clean Sweep (But Not In A Good Way)   
    TRANSACTIONS
    INF Anthony Prato added to A+ Cedar Rapids following rehab assignment
    RHP Matt Canterino activated from IL at A+ Cedar Rapids
    RHP Ralph Garza Jr. recalled by Minnesota Twins
    Saints Sentinel
    St. Paul 4, Indianapolis 7
    Box Score
    Starter: Beau Burrows: 3 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 5 K
    HR: Tomás Telis (8), Nick Gordon (3)
    Multi-hit games: Nick Gordon (2-for-4, HR, R, 3 RBI), Tomás Telis (2-for-4, HR, R, RBI), Damek Tomscha (2-for-4, R)
    St. Paul lost their momentum on Saturday.
    It began with some Beau on Beau action as both starting pitchers were named “Beau” (seriously). Burrows (or BB, as the cool kids call him), held Indianapolis scoreless over his three innings of work with five strikeouts. Burrows then passed the baton to Jovani Moran who, as usual, shut it down. He struck out three over two innings of work, and could be heard muttering “what else did I have to do to get called up?*”
    *I cannot confirm this.
    Offensively, St. Paul jumped out in front first. Tomás Telis plopped his eighth homer of the year in the first inning to give the Saints a quick 1-0 lead. Nick Gordon was not to be outdone, and he sent his third home run of the year over the right field wall.
    Now, usually I don’t point out defense in these games because, well, who cares. But Nick Gordon played at third base while Jose Miranda played in left field. I assume that this was done out of necessity, but if both players can play at those positions in just a passable manner, then their value to the major league club will be just that much more.
    This game revealed one of the problems that can arise in a bullpen game. Burrows and Moran did their part well, but Ryan Mason struggled and it allowed Indianapolis to tie the game in the 7th inning. Indianapolis then jumped on Ian Hamilton in the 8th with a bases-clearing double, and that ended up being all she wrote.
    Wind Surge Wisdom
    Wichita 2, Tulsa 5 
    Box Score
    Starter: Cole Sands: 5 2/3 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 10 K
    HR: B.J. Boyd 2 (11, 12)
    Multi-hit games: B.J. Boyd (2-for-4, 2 HR, 2 R, 2 RBI), Ernie De La Trinidad (2-for-3, BB)
    The Wind Surge lost on Saturday.
    ...But not due to Cole Sands. The righty was on his game on Saturday. Of the 17 outs he netted, 10 came via strikeouts. Yeah, that’ll work. It was his first start of the season with double-digit punch outs, and it was also his seventh start allowing one or fewer walks.
    They also did not lose because of B.J. Boyd. The free agent signee has been nothing short of elite in his time with Wichita. His OPS on the season is now above .900, and I imagine that one more game like this will finally force Wichita to build a statue in his honor.
    It was not enough to top the Drillers, though. Tulsa took out their frustration on Erik Manoah Jr., and put the game out of reach after the 7th inning. Oddly enough, Tulsa only had one more hit than Wichita. 
    Kernels Nuggets
    Cedar Rapids 3, Peoria 7 
    Box Score
    Starter: Sawyer Gipson-Long: 5 IP, 8 H, 4 ER, 1 BB, 9 K
    HR: None
    Multi-hit games: Edouard Julien (2-for-4, 2 R)
    The Kernels lost to a rehabbing major leaguer on Saturday.
    Miles Mikolas started for the Chiefs and was excellent. He held the Kernels to three runs over seven innings of work with eight strikeouts to boot. Come on man, go pick on players your own age (I’m sure he will soon).
    Sawyer Gipson-Long’s line is misleading. Two of his earned runs came via a two-run homer, while another run scored due to a throwing error by his catcher (not sure why it counts as an earned run, actually). No matter the runs, striking out nine batters over five innings of work is impressive. 
    The bats were a bit quiet on Saturday. Every run was scored off the bat of Matt Wallner (a first inning DP, and a 6th inning two-run single), and Edouard Julien was the only batter to net multiple hits. Of course it was Julien. I swear he gets on base twice every time I check the box score.
    The game slipped away in the 7th inning as the Chiefs ambushed Osiris German to the tune of three earned runs. Much like how the Saints lost, this proved to be too back-breaking for the Kernels to overcome. 
    Mussel Matters
    Fort Myers 1, Bradenton 2
    Box Score
    Starter: Bobby Milacki: 4 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 6 K
    HR: Aaron Sabato (10)
    Multi-hit games: Misael Urbina (2-for-5, 2B)
    Fort Myers lost in extra-innings on Saturday.
    Bobby Milacki started the Mighty Mussels off right with an excellent start on Saturday. His six strikeouts tied a personal single-game record, and it was his sixth outing in 2021 that ended without a walk. Not bad for a 38th round pick who the Twins signed out of independent ball.
    John Stankiewicz, Zaquiel Puentes, and Aaron Rozek carried the weight the rest of the way with five combined innings, and just a single hit allowed. They struck out three in total.
    Offensively, things were a bit tough. Misael Urbina was the lone hitter to drop in multiple hits, and just one other batter had an extra-base hit.
    But that one batter was Aaron Sabato who, unsurprisingly now, bopped his 10th homer of the year. He had just four home runs coming into the month of August.
    It has been great to see Sabato turn the corner like this. No prospect dropped as much as him when we at Twinsdaily updated our top prospect list, and a monster August to cap off his season would go a long way towards regaining his old 1st-round pick status. Will he do it? I suppose we shall see. 
    Unfortunately, the Mighty Mussels got Manfred-ed and the very first opposing batter in the bottom of the 10th singled home a run to end the game. I’m sure that they didn’t mind getting out of the way of the tropical storm, though. 
    Complex Chronicles
    The FCL Twins game was suspended on Saturday, and will be finished on Sunday. A quick scan of the box score reveals that Zander Wiel was in the starting lineup working through a rehab assignment.
    TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY
    Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Cole Sands
    Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – B.J. Boyd
    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 – Austin Martin (Wichita) - 0-3, 2 K
    #3 – Jordan Balazovic (Wichita) – Did not pitch
    #4 – Simeon Woods Richardson (Wichita) - Did not pitch
    #5 – Jhoan Duran (St. Paul) - Injured List (Right Elbow Strain)
    #6 – Jose Miranda (St. Paul) - 1-3, BB
    #7 – Joe Ryan (St. Paul) - Did not pitch
    #8 – Matt Canterino (Cedar Rapids) - Did not pitch
    #9 – Chase Petty (Complex) - 
    #10 – Keoni Cavaco (Fort Myers) - 1-5, K
    #11 – Josh Winder (St. Paul) - Injured List (Right Shoulder Impingement)
    #12 – Matt Wallner (Cedar Rapids) - 1-4, 2 RBI, K
    #13 – Gilberto Celestino (St. Paul) - 0-3
    #14 – Drew Strotman (St. Paul) - Did not pitch
    #15 – Noah Miller (Complex) - 
    #16 – Brent Rooker (Minnesota) - 2-4, HR, 2B, 2 R, 2 RBI
    #17 – Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) - Out for Season (Tommy John surgery)
    #18 – Misael Urbina (Fort Myers) - 2-5, 2B
    #19 – Cole Sands (Wichita) - 5 ⅔ IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 10 K
    #20 – Spencer Steer (Wichita) - Did not play
    SUNDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS
    St. Paul @ Indianapolis (11:35 AM) LHP Andrew Albers
    Wichita @ Tulsa (12:05 PM) RHP Jordan Balazovic 
    Cedar Rapids @ Peoria (12:35 PM) RHP Matt Canterino
    Fort Myers will not play on Sunday in anticipation of Tropical Storm Fred.
  14. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from nclahammer for an article, Twins Minor League Report (8/14): Clean Sweep (But Not In A Good Way)   
    TRANSACTIONS
    INF Anthony Prato added to A+ Cedar Rapids following rehab assignment
    RHP Matt Canterino activated from IL at A+ Cedar Rapids
    RHP Ralph Garza Jr. recalled by Minnesota Twins
    Saints Sentinel
    St. Paul 4, Indianapolis 7
    Box Score
    Starter: Beau Burrows: 3 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 5 K
    HR: Tomás Telis (8), Nick Gordon (3)
    Multi-hit games: Nick Gordon (2-for-4, HR, R, 3 RBI), Tomás Telis (2-for-4, HR, R, RBI), Damek Tomscha (2-for-4, R)
    St. Paul lost their momentum on Saturday.
    It began with some Beau on Beau action as both starting pitchers were named “Beau” (seriously). Burrows (or BB, as the cool kids call him), held Indianapolis scoreless over his three innings of work with five strikeouts. Burrows then passed the baton to Jovani Moran who, as usual, shut it down. He struck out three over two innings of work, and could be heard muttering “what else did I have to do to get called up?*”
    *I cannot confirm this.
    Offensively, St. Paul jumped out in front first. Tomás Telis plopped his eighth homer of the year in the first inning to give the Saints a quick 1-0 lead. Nick Gordon was not to be outdone, and he sent his third home run of the year over the right field wall.
    Now, usually I don’t point out defense in these games because, well, who cares. But Nick Gordon played at third base while Jose Miranda played in left field. I assume that this was done out of necessity, but if both players can play at those positions in just a passable manner, then their value to the major league club will be just that much more.
    This game revealed one of the problems that can arise in a bullpen game. Burrows and Moran did their part well, but Ryan Mason struggled and it allowed Indianapolis to tie the game in the 7th inning. Indianapolis then jumped on Ian Hamilton in the 8th with a bases-clearing double, and that ended up being all she wrote.
    Wind Surge Wisdom
    Wichita 2, Tulsa 5 
    Box Score
    Starter: Cole Sands: 5 2/3 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 10 K
    HR: B.J. Boyd 2 (11, 12)
    Multi-hit games: B.J. Boyd (2-for-4, 2 HR, 2 R, 2 RBI), Ernie De La Trinidad (2-for-3, BB)
    The Wind Surge lost on Saturday.
    ...But not due to Cole Sands. The righty was on his game on Saturday. Of the 17 outs he netted, 10 came via strikeouts. Yeah, that’ll work. It was his first start of the season with double-digit punch outs, and it was also his seventh start allowing one or fewer walks.
    They also did not lose because of B.J. Boyd. The free agent signee has been nothing short of elite in his time with Wichita. His OPS on the season is now above .900, and I imagine that one more game like this will finally force Wichita to build a statue in his honor.
    It was not enough to top the Drillers, though. Tulsa took out their frustration on Erik Manoah Jr., and put the game out of reach after the 7th inning. Oddly enough, Tulsa only had one more hit than Wichita. 
    Kernels Nuggets
    Cedar Rapids 3, Peoria 7 
    Box Score
    Starter: Sawyer Gipson-Long: 5 IP, 8 H, 4 ER, 1 BB, 9 K
    HR: None
    Multi-hit games: Edouard Julien (2-for-4, 2 R)
    The Kernels lost to a rehabbing major leaguer on Saturday.
    Miles Mikolas started for the Chiefs and was excellent. He held the Kernels to three runs over seven innings of work with eight strikeouts to boot. Come on man, go pick on players your own age (I’m sure he will soon).
    Sawyer Gipson-Long’s line is misleading. Two of his earned runs came via a two-run homer, while another run scored due to a throwing error by his catcher (not sure why it counts as an earned run, actually). No matter the runs, striking out nine batters over five innings of work is impressive. 
    The bats were a bit quiet on Saturday. Every run was scored off the bat of Matt Wallner (a first inning DP, and a 6th inning two-run single), and Edouard Julien was the only batter to net multiple hits. Of course it was Julien. I swear he gets on base twice every time I check the box score.
    The game slipped away in the 7th inning as the Chiefs ambushed Osiris German to the tune of three earned runs. Much like how the Saints lost, this proved to be too back-breaking for the Kernels to overcome. 
    Mussel Matters
    Fort Myers 1, Bradenton 2
    Box Score
    Starter: Bobby Milacki: 4 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 6 K
    HR: Aaron Sabato (10)
    Multi-hit games: Misael Urbina (2-for-5, 2B)
    Fort Myers lost in extra-innings on Saturday.
    Bobby Milacki started the Mighty Mussels off right with an excellent start on Saturday. His six strikeouts tied a personal single-game record, and it was his sixth outing in 2021 that ended without a walk. Not bad for a 38th round pick who the Twins signed out of independent ball.
    John Stankiewicz, Zaquiel Puentes, and Aaron Rozek carried the weight the rest of the way with five combined innings, and just a single hit allowed. They struck out three in total.
    Offensively, things were a bit tough. Misael Urbina was the lone hitter to drop in multiple hits, and just one other batter had an extra-base hit.
    But that one batter was Aaron Sabato who, unsurprisingly now, bopped his 10th homer of the year. He had just four home runs coming into the month of August.
    It has been great to see Sabato turn the corner like this. No prospect dropped as much as him when we at Twinsdaily updated our top prospect list, and a monster August to cap off his season would go a long way towards regaining his old 1st-round pick status. Will he do it? I suppose we shall see. 
    Unfortunately, the Mighty Mussels got Manfred-ed and the very first opposing batter in the bottom of the 10th singled home a run to end the game. I’m sure that they didn’t mind getting out of the way of the tropical storm, though. 
    Complex Chronicles
    The FCL Twins game was suspended on Saturday, and will be finished on Sunday. A quick scan of the box score reveals that Zander Wiel was in the starting lineup working through a rehab assignment.
    TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY
    Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Cole Sands
    Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – B.J. Boyd
    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 – Austin Martin (Wichita) - 0-3, 2 K
    #3 – Jordan Balazovic (Wichita) – Did not pitch
    #4 – Simeon Woods Richardson (Wichita) - Did not pitch
    #5 – Jhoan Duran (St. Paul) - Injured List (Right Elbow Strain)
    #6 – Jose Miranda (St. Paul) - 1-3, BB
    #7 – Joe Ryan (St. Paul) - Did not pitch
    #8 – Matt Canterino (Cedar Rapids) - Did not pitch
    #9 – Chase Petty (Complex) - 
    #10 – Keoni Cavaco (Fort Myers) - 1-5, K
    #11 – Josh Winder (St. Paul) - Injured List (Right Shoulder Impingement)
    #12 – Matt Wallner (Cedar Rapids) - 1-4, 2 RBI, K
    #13 – Gilberto Celestino (St. Paul) - 0-3
    #14 – Drew Strotman (St. Paul) - Did not pitch
    #15 – Noah Miller (Complex) - 
    #16 – Brent Rooker (Minnesota) - 2-4, HR, 2B, 2 R, 2 RBI
    #17 – Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) - Out for Season (Tommy John surgery)
    #18 – Misael Urbina (Fort Myers) - 2-5, 2B
    #19 – Cole Sands (Wichita) - 5 ⅔ IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 10 K
    #20 – Spencer Steer (Wichita) - Did not play
    SUNDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS
    St. Paul @ Indianapolis (11:35 AM) LHP Andrew Albers
    Wichita @ Tulsa (12:05 PM) RHP Jordan Balazovic 
    Cedar Rapids @ Peoria (12:35 PM) RHP Matt Canterino
    Fort Myers will not play on Sunday in anticipation of Tropical Storm Fred.
  15. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from nclahammer for an article, TD Top Twins Prospect Rankings (Post Draft and Trade Deadline): 15-11   
    15. Noah Miller - INF
    Age: 18
    ETA: 2025
    2021 Stats: n/a
    2021 Mid-Season Ranking: n/a
    There is little to say about Noah Miller considering the fact that he is just 18, and has not played a game of professional baseball yet. The Twins decided to select Miller with the final pick in the 1st round of the 2021 MLB Draft as they believe in his immense potential as a switch-hitting, athletic shortstop. Oh, and also because he hit .608 as a high school senior. No, that is not a typo. Miller will certainly require a significant amount of time to develop, but the end result could be a truly dynamic middle-infielder who could anchor the top of a lineup for years. Just make sure to keep his name tucked away for future reference.
    14. Drew Strotman - RHSP
    Age: 24
    ETA: 2021
    2021 Stats: 67 ⅔ IP, 3.59 ERA, 1.40 WHIP, 4.14 FIP, 22.8 K%, 13.1 BB%
    2021 Mid-Season Ranking: n/a
    Drew Strotman is perhaps the most polarizing prospect the Twins received at the trade deadline. Fangraphs has him placed optimistically as the team’s 7th best prospect (and on the edge of the top 100 prospect list), while MLB.com ranked him as the franchise's 15th best prospect-a number much closer to what we decided. At any rate, Strotman is an exciting combination of talent and seasoning. A brand new cutter has deepened what was already an intriguing repertoire of major league quality. He has already been added to the 40-man roster so his promotion to the major league club is simply a formality at this point. The walks are high, but Eric Longenhagen wrote that Strotman is “likely a big league starter”. Lord knows that the Twins need as many of those as they can get.
    13. Gilberto Celestino - OF
    Age: 22
    ETA: 2021
    2021 Stats: (MLB): .136 AVG, .177 OBP, .288 SLG, 23 wRC+ (AA/AAA): .259 AVG, .338 OBP, .431 SLG, 107 WRC+
    2021 Mid-Season Ranking: 7
    Gilberto Celestino is the only player from this part of the list to play at the major league level and, well, he certainly seemed overwhelmed. The young outfielder was acquired by the Twins in the Ryan Pressly trade three years ago (holy bleep, it’s been three years already?), and it is quite clear that, while Celestino possesses quality tools, he needs more seasoning before he can succeed in the show. But fear not. Celestino is still just 22 years old and, as we all have seen over the past few years, toolsy center fielders often require an extended amount of time to realize their full potential. Celestino will play out the rest of 2021 at AAA (where he owns a 130 wRC+ in a small sample) and will be better prepared to potentially etch out a role on the 2022 Twins. 
    12. Matt Wallner - OF
    Age: 23
    ETA: 2022
    2021 Stats (A+): .281 AVG, .338 OBP, .548 SLG, 135 wRC+
    2021 Mid-Season Ranking: 10
    Matt Wallner was plucked from the backwoods of Minnesota by the Twins with the 39th overall pick of the 2019 draft. Well, that is not entirely accurate as the Twins neither physically plucked him, like one would with an apple, nor was he taken directly from the state (he played college ball at the University of Southern Mississippi), but the sentence sounds cool so it shall stay. (Editor's Note: Ummmm....) Anyways, Wallner was drafted as a high-strikeout guy with “light tower power,” and so far in his minor league career he has played… like a high strikeout guy with light tower power. He has been frustratingly limited to just over 30 games in 2021 due to a pesky wrist injury that proved to be more serious than previously believed. He had surgery on his hamate bone. But in the time he has played, Wallner has mashed. His nine homers over 148 plate appearances gives him about a 36 home run pace over 600 plate appearances (a typical full season), while his .548 slugging percentage would make him the 11th best qualified major leaguer by that stat. Simply put, a healthy Wallner can absolutely crush. 
    11. Josh Winder - RHSP
    Age: 24
    ETA: 2022
    2021 Stats (AA/AAA): 72 IP, 2.63 ERA, 0.94 WHIP, 3.41 FIP, 29.1 K%, 4.7 BB%
    2021 Mid-Season Ranking: 8
    Perhaps no prospect throughout the Twins’ system has seen his stock rise higher in 2021 than Josh Winder. Even the noted, uh, “strong opinion-holder”, Keith Law, admitted that he was anticipating watching Winder pitch in 2021. So far, Winder has not disappointed. He saw a tangible uptick in velocity while working out in 2020, and the upgrade has rippled throughout his entire pitch mix. The result was an utterly dominant stint at AA Wichita that saw him strike out more than 30% of the hitters he faced, walk less than 5% of them, and earn a trip to the MLB Futures Game. Batters hit a paltry .207 against him, and I can only imagine that hitters in the AA-Central North division threw an absolute rager of a party to celebrate his promotion to AAA. A shoulder injury has cut Winder’s playtime in AAA to just four meager starts, and it appears that the team is in no rush to bring Winder back in 2021; a mix of injuries and a desire to limit his innings total is the culprit here. In any case, Winder should be on everyone's radar as a starter who will make an impact in 2022. 
     
  16. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from ToddlerHarmon for an article, TD Top Twins Prospect Rankings (Post Draft and Trade Deadline): 15-11   
    15. Noah Miller - INF
    Age: 18
    ETA: 2025
    2021 Stats: n/a
    2021 Mid-Season Ranking: n/a
    There is little to say about Noah Miller considering the fact that he is just 18, and has not played a game of professional baseball yet. The Twins decided to select Miller with the final pick in the 1st round of the 2021 MLB Draft as they believe in his immense potential as a switch-hitting, athletic shortstop. Oh, and also because he hit .608 as a high school senior. No, that is not a typo. Miller will certainly require a significant amount of time to develop, but the end result could be a truly dynamic middle-infielder who could anchor the top of a lineup for years. Just make sure to keep his name tucked away for future reference.
    14. Drew Strotman - RHSP
    Age: 24
    ETA: 2021
    2021 Stats: 67 ⅔ IP, 3.59 ERA, 1.40 WHIP, 4.14 FIP, 22.8 K%, 13.1 BB%
    2021 Mid-Season Ranking: n/a
    Drew Strotman is perhaps the most polarizing prospect the Twins received at the trade deadline. Fangraphs has him placed optimistically as the team’s 7th best prospect (and on the edge of the top 100 prospect list), while MLB.com ranked him as the franchise's 15th best prospect-a number much closer to what we decided. At any rate, Strotman is an exciting combination of talent and seasoning. A brand new cutter has deepened what was already an intriguing repertoire of major league quality. He has already been added to the 40-man roster so his promotion to the major league club is simply a formality at this point. The walks are high, but Eric Longenhagen wrote that Strotman is “likely a big league starter”. Lord knows that the Twins need as many of those as they can get.
    13. Gilberto Celestino - OF
    Age: 22
    ETA: 2021
    2021 Stats: (MLB): .136 AVG, .177 OBP, .288 SLG, 23 wRC+ (AA/AAA): .259 AVG, .338 OBP, .431 SLG, 107 WRC+
    2021 Mid-Season Ranking: 7
    Gilberto Celestino is the only player from this part of the list to play at the major league level and, well, he certainly seemed overwhelmed. The young outfielder was acquired by the Twins in the Ryan Pressly trade three years ago (holy bleep, it’s been three years already?), and it is quite clear that, while Celestino possesses quality tools, he needs more seasoning before he can succeed in the show. But fear not. Celestino is still just 22 years old and, as we all have seen over the past few years, toolsy center fielders often require an extended amount of time to realize their full potential. Celestino will play out the rest of 2021 at AAA (where he owns a 130 wRC+ in a small sample) and will be better prepared to potentially etch out a role on the 2022 Twins. 
    12. Matt Wallner - OF
    Age: 23
    ETA: 2022
    2021 Stats (A+): .281 AVG, .338 OBP, .548 SLG, 135 wRC+
    2021 Mid-Season Ranking: 10
    Matt Wallner was plucked from the backwoods of Minnesota by the Twins with the 39th overall pick of the 2019 draft. Well, that is not entirely accurate as the Twins neither physically plucked him, like one would with an apple, nor was he taken directly from the state (he played college ball at the University of Southern Mississippi), but the sentence sounds cool so it shall stay. (Editor's Note: Ummmm....) Anyways, Wallner was drafted as a high-strikeout guy with “light tower power,” and so far in his minor league career he has played… like a high strikeout guy with light tower power. He has been frustratingly limited to just over 30 games in 2021 due to a pesky wrist injury that proved to be more serious than previously believed. He had surgery on his hamate bone. But in the time he has played, Wallner has mashed. His nine homers over 148 plate appearances gives him about a 36 home run pace over 600 plate appearances (a typical full season), while his .548 slugging percentage would make him the 11th best qualified major leaguer by that stat. Simply put, a healthy Wallner can absolutely crush. 
    11. Josh Winder - RHSP
    Age: 24
    ETA: 2022
    2021 Stats (AA/AAA): 72 IP, 2.63 ERA, 0.94 WHIP, 3.41 FIP, 29.1 K%, 4.7 BB%
    2021 Mid-Season Ranking: 8
    Perhaps no prospect throughout the Twins’ system has seen his stock rise higher in 2021 than Josh Winder. Even the noted, uh, “strong opinion-holder”, Keith Law, admitted that he was anticipating watching Winder pitch in 2021. So far, Winder has not disappointed. He saw a tangible uptick in velocity while working out in 2020, and the upgrade has rippled throughout his entire pitch mix. The result was an utterly dominant stint at AA Wichita that saw him strike out more than 30% of the hitters he faced, walk less than 5% of them, and earn a trip to the MLB Futures Game. Batters hit a paltry .207 against him, and I can only imagine that hitters in the AA-Central North division threw an absolute rager of a party to celebrate his promotion to AAA. A shoulder injury has cut Winder’s playtime in AAA to just four meager starts, and it appears that the team is in no rush to bring Winder back in 2021; a mix of injuries and a desire to limit his innings total is the culprit here. In any case, Winder should be on everyone's radar as a starter who will make an impact in 2022. 
     
  17. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from MN_ExPat for an article, TD Top Twins Prospect Rankings (Post Draft and Trade Deadline): 15-11   
    15. Noah Miller - INF
    Age: 18
    ETA: 2025
    2021 Stats: n/a
    2021 Mid-Season Ranking: n/a
    There is little to say about Noah Miller considering the fact that he is just 18, and has not played a game of professional baseball yet. The Twins decided to select Miller with the final pick in the 1st round of the 2021 MLB Draft as they believe in his immense potential as a switch-hitting, athletic shortstop. Oh, and also because he hit .608 as a high school senior. No, that is not a typo. Miller will certainly require a significant amount of time to develop, but the end result could be a truly dynamic middle-infielder who could anchor the top of a lineup for years. Just make sure to keep his name tucked away for future reference.
    14. Drew Strotman - RHSP
    Age: 24
    ETA: 2021
    2021 Stats: 67 ⅔ IP, 3.59 ERA, 1.40 WHIP, 4.14 FIP, 22.8 K%, 13.1 BB%
    2021 Mid-Season Ranking: n/a
    Drew Strotman is perhaps the most polarizing prospect the Twins received at the trade deadline. Fangraphs has him placed optimistically as the team’s 7th best prospect (and on the edge of the top 100 prospect list), while MLB.com ranked him as the franchise's 15th best prospect-a number much closer to what we decided. At any rate, Strotman is an exciting combination of talent and seasoning. A brand new cutter has deepened what was already an intriguing repertoire of major league quality. He has already been added to the 40-man roster so his promotion to the major league club is simply a formality at this point. The walks are high, but Eric Longenhagen wrote that Strotman is “likely a big league starter”. Lord knows that the Twins need as many of those as they can get.
    13. Gilberto Celestino - OF
    Age: 22
    ETA: 2021
    2021 Stats: (MLB): .136 AVG, .177 OBP, .288 SLG, 23 wRC+ (AA/AAA): .259 AVG, .338 OBP, .431 SLG, 107 WRC+
    2021 Mid-Season Ranking: 7
    Gilberto Celestino is the only player from this part of the list to play at the major league level and, well, he certainly seemed overwhelmed. The young outfielder was acquired by the Twins in the Ryan Pressly trade three years ago (holy bleep, it’s been three years already?), and it is quite clear that, while Celestino possesses quality tools, he needs more seasoning before he can succeed in the show. But fear not. Celestino is still just 22 years old and, as we all have seen over the past few years, toolsy center fielders often require an extended amount of time to realize their full potential. Celestino will play out the rest of 2021 at AAA (where he owns a 130 wRC+ in a small sample) and will be better prepared to potentially etch out a role on the 2022 Twins. 
    12. Matt Wallner - OF
    Age: 23
    ETA: 2022
    2021 Stats (A+): .281 AVG, .338 OBP, .548 SLG, 135 wRC+
    2021 Mid-Season Ranking: 10
    Matt Wallner was plucked from the backwoods of Minnesota by the Twins with the 39th overall pick of the 2019 draft. Well, that is not entirely accurate as the Twins neither physically plucked him, like one would with an apple, nor was he taken directly from the state (he played college ball at the University of Southern Mississippi), but the sentence sounds cool so it shall stay. (Editor's Note: Ummmm....) Anyways, Wallner was drafted as a high-strikeout guy with “light tower power,” and so far in his minor league career he has played… like a high strikeout guy with light tower power. He has been frustratingly limited to just over 30 games in 2021 due to a pesky wrist injury that proved to be more serious than previously believed. He had surgery on his hamate bone. But in the time he has played, Wallner has mashed. His nine homers over 148 plate appearances gives him about a 36 home run pace over 600 plate appearances (a typical full season), while his .548 slugging percentage would make him the 11th best qualified major leaguer by that stat. Simply put, a healthy Wallner can absolutely crush. 
    11. Josh Winder - RHSP
    Age: 24
    ETA: 2022
    2021 Stats (AA/AAA): 72 IP, 2.63 ERA, 0.94 WHIP, 3.41 FIP, 29.1 K%, 4.7 BB%
    2021 Mid-Season Ranking: 8
    Perhaps no prospect throughout the Twins’ system has seen his stock rise higher in 2021 than Josh Winder. Even the noted, uh, “strong opinion-holder”, Keith Law, admitted that he was anticipating watching Winder pitch in 2021. So far, Winder has not disappointed. He saw a tangible uptick in velocity while working out in 2020, and the upgrade has rippled throughout his entire pitch mix. The result was an utterly dominant stint at AA Wichita that saw him strike out more than 30% of the hitters he faced, walk less than 5% of them, and earn a trip to the MLB Futures Game. Batters hit a paltry .207 against him, and I can only imagine that hitters in the AA-Central North division threw an absolute rager of a party to celebrate his promotion to AAA. A shoulder injury has cut Winder’s playtime in AAA to just four meager starts, and it appears that the team is in no rush to bring Winder back in 2021; a mix of injuries and a desire to limit his innings total is the culprit here. In any case, Winder should be on everyone's radar as a starter who will make an impact in 2022. 
     
  18. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from wsnydes for an article, TD Top Twins Prospect Rankings (Post Draft and Trade Deadline): 15-11   
    15. Noah Miller - INF
    Age: 18
    ETA: 2025
    2021 Stats: n/a
    2021 Mid-Season Ranking: n/a
    There is little to say about Noah Miller considering the fact that he is just 18, and has not played a game of professional baseball yet. The Twins decided to select Miller with the final pick in the 1st round of the 2021 MLB Draft as they believe in his immense potential as a switch-hitting, athletic shortstop. Oh, and also because he hit .608 as a high school senior. No, that is not a typo. Miller will certainly require a significant amount of time to develop, but the end result could be a truly dynamic middle-infielder who could anchor the top of a lineup for years. Just make sure to keep his name tucked away for future reference.
    14. Drew Strotman - RHSP
    Age: 24
    ETA: 2021
    2021 Stats: 67 ⅔ IP, 3.59 ERA, 1.40 WHIP, 4.14 FIP, 22.8 K%, 13.1 BB%
    2021 Mid-Season Ranking: n/a
    Drew Strotman is perhaps the most polarizing prospect the Twins received at the trade deadline. Fangraphs has him placed optimistically as the team’s 7th best prospect (and on the edge of the top 100 prospect list), while MLB.com ranked him as the franchise's 15th best prospect-a number much closer to what we decided. At any rate, Strotman is an exciting combination of talent and seasoning. A brand new cutter has deepened what was already an intriguing repertoire of major league quality. He has already been added to the 40-man roster so his promotion to the major league club is simply a formality at this point. The walks are high, but Eric Longenhagen wrote that Strotman is “likely a big league starter”. Lord knows that the Twins need as many of those as they can get.
    13. Gilberto Celestino - OF
    Age: 22
    ETA: 2021
    2021 Stats: (MLB): .136 AVG, .177 OBP, .288 SLG, 23 wRC+ (AA/AAA): .259 AVG, .338 OBP, .431 SLG, 107 WRC+
    2021 Mid-Season Ranking: 7
    Gilberto Celestino is the only player from this part of the list to play at the major league level and, well, he certainly seemed overwhelmed. The young outfielder was acquired by the Twins in the Ryan Pressly trade three years ago (holy bleep, it’s been three years already?), and it is quite clear that, while Celestino possesses quality tools, he needs more seasoning before he can succeed in the show. But fear not. Celestino is still just 22 years old and, as we all have seen over the past few years, toolsy center fielders often require an extended amount of time to realize their full potential. Celestino will play out the rest of 2021 at AAA (where he owns a 130 wRC+ in a small sample) and will be better prepared to potentially etch out a role on the 2022 Twins. 
    12. Matt Wallner - OF
    Age: 23
    ETA: 2022
    2021 Stats (A+): .281 AVG, .338 OBP, .548 SLG, 135 wRC+
    2021 Mid-Season Ranking: 10
    Matt Wallner was plucked from the backwoods of Minnesota by the Twins with the 39th overall pick of the 2019 draft. Well, that is not entirely accurate as the Twins neither physically plucked him, like one would with an apple, nor was he taken directly from the state (he played college ball at the University of Southern Mississippi), but the sentence sounds cool so it shall stay. (Editor's Note: Ummmm....) Anyways, Wallner was drafted as a high-strikeout guy with “light tower power,” and so far in his minor league career he has played… like a high strikeout guy with light tower power. He has been frustratingly limited to just over 30 games in 2021 due to a pesky wrist injury that proved to be more serious than previously believed. He had surgery on his hamate bone. But in the time he has played, Wallner has mashed. His nine homers over 148 plate appearances gives him about a 36 home run pace over 600 plate appearances (a typical full season), while his .548 slugging percentage would make him the 11th best qualified major leaguer by that stat. Simply put, a healthy Wallner can absolutely crush. 
    11. Josh Winder - RHSP
    Age: 24
    ETA: 2022
    2021 Stats (AA/AAA): 72 IP, 2.63 ERA, 0.94 WHIP, 3.41 FIP, 29.1 K%, 4.7 BB%
    2021 Mid-Season Ranking: 8
    Perhaps no prospect throughout the Twins’ system has seen his stock rise higher in 2021 than Josh Winder. Even the noted, uh, “strong opinion-holder”, Keith Law, admitted that he was anticipating watching Winder pitch in 2021. So far, Winder has not disappointed. He saw a tangible uptick in velocity while working out in 2020, and the upgrade has rippled throughout his entire pitch mix. The result was an utterly dominant stint at AA Wichita that saw him strike out more than 30% of the hitters he faced, walk less than 5% of them, and earn a trip to the MLB Futures Game. Batters hit a paltry .207 against him, and I can only imagine that hitters in the AA-Central North division threw an absolute rager of a party to celebrate his promotion to AAA. A shoulder injury has cut Winder’s playtime in AAA to just four meager starts, and it appears that the team is in no rush to bring Winder back in 2021; a mix of injuries and a desire to limit his innings total is the culprit here. In any case, Winder should be on everyone's radar as a starter who will make an impact in 2022. 
     
  19. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from nclahammer for an article, Minor League Report 8/7 Walk-Off Winners   
    TRANSACTIONS
    C Jeferson Morales promoted to A+ Cedar Rapids  RHP Luis Rijo placed on 7-day IL at A+ Cedar Rapids (right elbow sprain) C Allante Hall transferred to A Fort Myers LHP Sean Gilmartin placed on 7-day IL at AA Wichita  C Jair Camargo placed on 7-day IL at A+ Cedar Rapids retroactive to August 6th (right hamstring strain) RHP Josh Winder placed on 7-day IL at AAA St. Paul retroactive to July 22nd (right shoulder impingement) Saints Sentinel
    St. Paul 4, Louisville 2
    Box Score
    Ian Hamilton: 3 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 4 K
    HR: None
    Multi-hit games: None
    St. Paul was nearly no-hit on Saturday.
    Bo Takahashi held the squad hitless while he was on the mound but the team was able to pounce on rehabbing reliever Tejay Antone for their first hit, and their first run of the game.
    The run tied the game; a fact aided in no small part by the Saints pitching staff on Saturday. It was a bullpen game and Ian Hamilton drew the first straw. Hamilton was able to shed his previous issues with command, and staunchly allowed no Reds hitter to reach base via the walk. All in all, Hamilton tossed three quality innings.
    The game was even at one headed into the 9th inning. Ryan Mason ran into some trouble, and before anyone could even realize it, the bases were loaded. The Bats plated a run but nearly scored another if Jimmy Kerrigan did not hose the runner at home with a great play:
    It looked as if Louisville was going to walk away with a win, but Mark Contreras had other plans. He sent a ball to what was previously an undocumented dimension with his game-tying blast:
    Édgar García ran into some trouble in the top half of the 10th inning, but was able to escape any real damage. In the bottom half of the inning, Ben Rortvedt was called upon to pinch hit for J.T. Riddle and send the home crowd into a frenzy with a walk-off two-run bomb:
    Wind Surge Wisdom
    Wichita 5, Midland 4
    Box Score
    SP: Austin Schulfer: 5 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 6 K
    HR: Caleb Hamilton (7), Jermaine Palacios (16)
    Multi-hit games: Caleb Hamilton (2-for-3, HR, 2B, R, 4 RBI)
    The Wind Surge won a thriller on Saturday.
    Austin Schulfer carried the squad early with yet another wonderful start. The right-hander has been workhorse-like in 2021 with nearly 80 innings on the year; an impressive total considering the non-existent 2020 minor league season.
    Caleb Hamilton backed his starter quickly with a 2nd inning, two-run homer. The 26-year-old is now creeping up on his career-high in homers for a season (9) which he set in 2017. 
    In the least surprising news since the election of George Washington, Jermaine Palacios crushed his 16th homer of the year on Saturday. The blast moved Palacios into the top 10 for homeruns among all minor league shortstops. Yes, all of them. His new-found power is real and, if you happen to be the unfortunate soul pitching to him, terrifying.
    The game was knotted at three headed into the 9th inning. The Rockhounds inched ahead thanks to a Jonah Bride homer, but the Wind Surge refused to end quietly. With the bases loaded, Caleb Hamilton sent everyone home with a sacrifice fly that scored not one, but two runs. Take a look for yourself:
    Kernels Nuggets
    Cedar Rapids 1, Quad Cities 4
    Box Score
    SP: Tyler Beck: 6 IP, 5 H, 4 ER, 1 BB, 5 K
    HR: None
    Multi-hit games: None
    The Kernels lost a clean game on Saturday.
    Tyler Beck’s line looks uglier than reality. Four runs is poor no matter how it’s sliced, but Beck’s runs came in the form of a duo of two-run shots. The sudden nature of home runs reflects a pitcher who was more unlucky than poor. Two pitches made the difference between four earned runs and a potentially better outing.
    In any case, the Kernels offense did little to help Beck. Wander Javier’s 7th inning triple was the lone extra-base hit by Cedar Rapids in the game. In total, only four base hits came off the bats of Kernels hitters on Saturday. 
    For an inkling of good news from this game, Breckin Williams and Andrew Cabezas combined for three perfect innings of relief. The two righties punched out four batters in total.
    Mussel Matters
    Fort Myers 5, Dunedin 3
    Box Score
    SP: Miguel Rodriguez: 3 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 4 K
    HR: None
    Multi-hit games: Jesus Feliz (2-for-4, 2B, R, RBI), Willie Joe Garry Jr. (2-for-4, R)
    Fort Myers won a (somewhat) close one on Saturday.
    Despite falling down into a quick 1-0 pit, the Mighty Mussels easily rebounded. In the 2nd inning, Ruben Santana grounded home a run and Misael Urbina walked home another to steal the lead from Dunedin. Jesus Feliz singled home a third run in the 3rd inning, and a wild pitch in the 5th plated the final two runs scored by Fort Myers on the night. One has to unleash a truly reckless pitch to score two baserunners. If only the play was televised.
    Both Charles Mack and Nick Anderson reached base four times on Saturday. They combined for enough walks to challenge an old-persons home. 
    But that’s enough for the offense. Let’s honor the pitchers who paved the path for the Mighty Mussels on Saturday. Beyond Miguel Rodriguez, whose great performance was self-evident, Zarion Sharpe held the Blue Jays scoreless for four crucial innings. Combining both of their pitching lines gives you one singular starter who gave up just one run over seven innings of work. That will play.
    Originally, I had written that the Mighty Mussels “won a comfortable one on Saturday”, but that became false in the 9th inning. Steven Cruz was called upon to guard a four-run lead. He would end the game with a two-run lead. But hey, the size of the lead does not matter at all as long as it holds. 
    Complex Chronicles
    Game one: FCL Twins 5, FCL Red Sox 11
    Box Score
    SP: Erasmo Moreno: 3 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 1 K
    R: Emmanuel Rodriguez (5)
    Multi-hit games: Emmanuel Rodriguez (3-for-4, HR, 2B, 2 R, RBI)
    This game was a continuation of the battle that began yesterday, but was suspended. Perhaps the FCL Twins would have preferred it if the matchup was just canceled instead.
    FCL Twins pitchers were struck well and often by the FCL Red Sox offense. No Twin escaped the endeavor without a wounded ERA with the lone exception of John Wilson. 
    There was good news on the offensive front, however. Emmanuel Rodriguez knocked around a pair of extra-base hits, and Alerick Soularie finally graced a baseball diamond as a member of the Twins. Other than that, it is best to leave this game to the history books.
    Game two: FCL Twins 5, FCL Red Sox 1
    Box Score
    SP: Develson Aria: 3 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 4 K
    HR: Alerick Soularie (1), Ricardo Oliver (1)
    Multi-hit games: Alerick Soularie (2-for-2, HR, 2 R, 2 RBI), Alexander Pena (2-for-4, RBI)
    While the first game was considerably unremarkable, game two was anything but. This type of glow-up has not been seen since George Gordon Meade took over command of the Army of the Potomac.
    In a level of irony well-suited for Alanis Morissette, the FCL Twins scored as many runs in this game as they had in the previous encounter. Alerick Soularie demanded that his presence be acknowledged as he blasted his first career homer in the first inning of the game. In all, three runs would be scored before three outs were netted.
    All three pitchers for the FCL Twins left the game with a clean slate. Develson Aria proved that he is more than just a phenomenal name, and he held the Red Sox scoreless in his start. Danny Moreno and Samuel Perez were called upon to relieve Aria, and both players evaded allowing any earned runs.
    TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY
    Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Austin Schulfer
    Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Caleb Hamilton
    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) - 0-3
    #6 – Keoni Cavaco (Fort Myers) – 0-4, 2 K
    #7 – Gilberto Celestino (St. Paul) – 1-4, R, K
    #8 – Josh Winder (St. Paul) – Injured List (Right Shoulder Impingement)
    #9 – Aaron Sabato (Fort Myers) – Did not play
    #10 – Matt Wallner (Cedar Rapids) – 0-4, K
    #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) – 0-4, BB, K
    #16 – Spencer Steer (Wichita) – 0-4, K
    #17 – Wander Javier (Cedar Rapids) – 1-4, 3B, 2 K
    #18 – Alerick Soularie (FCL Twins) – 2-5, HR, 2 R, 2 RBI, BB, K
    #19 – Edwar Colina (Rehab) – Injured List (elbow)
    #20 – Chris Vallimont (Wichita) – Did not pitch
    SUNDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS
    Dunedin @ Fort Myers (10:00 AM) RHP Sawyer Gipson-Long
    Midland @ Wichita (12:05 PM) RHP Cole Sands 
    Quad Cities @ Cedar Rapids (1:05 PM) RHP Cody Laweryson
    Louisville @ St. Paul (1:05 PM) LHP Lewis Thorpe 
     
  20. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from operation mindcrime for an article, Minor League Report 8/7 Walk-Off Winners   
    TRANSACTIONS
    C Jeferson Morales promoted to A+ Cedar Rapids  RHP Luis Rijo placed on 7-day IL at A+ Cedar Rapids (right elbow sprain) C Allante Hall transferred to A Fort Myers LHP Sean Gilmartin placed on 7-day IL at AA Wichita  C Jair Camargo placed on 7-day IL at A+ Cedar Rapids retroactive to August 6th (right hamstring strain) RHP Josh Winder placed on 7-day IL at AAA St. Paul retroactive to July 22nd (right shoulder impingement) Saints Sentinel
    St. Paul 4, Louisville 2
    Box Score
    Ian Hamilton: 3 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 4 K
    HR: None
    Multi-hit games: None
    St. Paul was nearly no-hit on Saturday.
    Bo Takahashi held the squad hitless while he was on the mound but the team was able to pounce on rehabbing reliever Tejay Antone for their first hit, and their first run of the game.
    The run tied the game; a fact aided in no small part by the Saints pitching staff on Saturday. It was a bullpen game and Ian Hamilton drew the first straw. Hamilton was able to shed his previous issues with command, and staunchly allowed no Reds hitter to reach base via the walk. All in all, Hamilton tossed three quality innings.
    The game was even at one headed into the 9th inning. Ryan Mason ran into some trouble, and before anyone could even realize it, the bases were loaded. The Bats plated a run but nearly scored another if Jimmy Kerrigan did not hose the runner at home with a great play:
    It looked as if Louisville was going to walk away with a win, but Mark Contreras had other plans. He sent a ball to what was previously an undocumented dimension with his game-tying blast:
    Édgar García ran into some trouble in the top half of the 10th inning, but was able to escape any real damage. In the bottom half of the inning, Ben Rortvedt was called upon to pinch hit for J.T. Riddle and send the home crowd into a frenzy with a walk-off two-run bomb:
    Wind Surge Wisdom
    Wichita 5, Midland 4
    Box Score
    SP: Austin Schulfer: 5 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 6 K
    HR: Caleb Hamilton (7), Jermaine Palacios (16)
    Multi-hit games: Caleb Hamilton (2-for-3, HR, 2B, R, 4 RBI)
    The Wind Surge won a thriller on Saturday.
    Austin Schulfer carried the squad early with yet another wonderful start. The right-hander has been workhorse-like in 2021 with nearly 80 innings on the year; an impressive total considering the non-existent 2020 minor league season.
    Caleb Hamilton backed his starter quickly with a 2nd inning, two-run homer. The 26-year-old is now creeping up on his career-high in homers for a season (9) which he set in 2017. 
    In the least surprising news since the election of George Washington, Jermaine Palacios crushed his 16th homer of the year on Saturday. The blast moved Palacios into the top 10 for homeruns among all minor league shortstops. Yes, all of them. His new-found power is real and, if you happen to be the unfortunate soul pitching to him, terrifying.
    The game was knotted at three headed into the 9th inning. The Rockhounds inched ahead thanks to a Jonah Bride homer, but the Wind Surge refused to end quietly. With the bases loaded, Caleb Hamilton sent everyone home with a sacrifice fly that scored not one, but two runs. Take a look for yourself:
    Kernels Nuggets
    Cedar Rapids 1, Quad Cities 4
    Box Score
    SP: Tyler Beck: 6 IP, 5 H, 4 ER, 1 BB, 5 K
    HR: None
    Multi-hit games: None
    The Kernels lost a clean game on Saturday.
    Tyler Beck’s line looks uglier than reality. Four runs is poor no matter how it’s sliced, but Beck’s runs came in the form of a duo of two-run shots. The sudden nature of home runs reflects a pitcher who was more unlucky than poor. Two pitches made the difference between four earned runs and a potentially better outing.
    In any case, the Kernels offense did little to help Beck. Wander Javier’s 7th inning triple was the lone extra-base hit by Cedar Rapids in the game. In total, only four base hits came off the bats of Kernels hitters on Saturday. 
    For an inkling of good news from this game, Breckin Williams and Andrew Cabezas combined for three perfect innings of relief. The two righties punched out four batters in total.
    Mussel Matters
    Fort Myers 5, Dunedin 3
    Box Score
    SP: Miguel Rodriguez: 3 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 4 K
    HR: None
    Multi-hit games: Jesus Feliz (2-for-4, 2B, R, RBI), Willie Joe Garry Jr. (2-for-4, R)
    Fort Myers won a (somewhat) close one on Saturday.
    Despite falling down into a quick 1-0 pit, the Mighty Mussels easily rebounded. In the 2nd inning, Ruben Santana grounded home a run and Misael Urbina walked home another to steal the lead from Dunedin. Jesus Feliz singled home a third run in the 3rd inning, and a wild pitch in the 5th plated the final two runs scored by Fort Myers on the night. One has to unleash a truly reckless pitch to score two baserunners. If only the play was televised.
    Both Charles Mack and Nick Anderson reached base four times on Saturday. They combined for enough walks to challenge an old-persons home. 
    But that’s enough for the offense. Let’s honor the pitchers who paved the path for the Mighty Mussels on Saturday. Beyond Miguel Rodriguez, whose great performance was self-evident, Zarion Sharpe held the Blue Jays scoreless for four crucial innings. Combining both of their pitching lines gives you one singular starter who gave up just one run over seven innings of work. That will play.
    Originally, I had written that the Mighty Mussels “won a comfortable one on Saturday”, but that became false in the 9th inning. Steven Cruz was called upon to guard a four-run lead. He would end the game with a two-run lead. But hey, the size of the lead does not matter at all as long as it holds. 
    Complex Chronicles
    Game one: FCL Twins 5, FCL Red Sox 11
    Box Score
    SP: Erasmo Moreno: 3 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 1 K
    R: Emmanuel Rodriguez (5)
    Multi-hit games: Emmanuel Rodriguez (3-for-4, HR, 2B, 2 R, RBI)
    This game was a continuation of the battle that began yesterday, but was suspended. Perhaps the FCL Twins would have preferred it if the matchup was just canceled instead.
    FCL Twins pitchers were struck well and often by the FCL Red Sox offense. No Twin escaped the endeavor without a wounded ERA with the lone exception of John Wilson. 
    There was good news on the offensive front, however. Emmanuel Rodriguez knocked around a pair of extra-base hits, and Alerick Soularie finally graced a baseball diamond as a member of the Twins. Other than that, it is best to leave this game to the history books.
    Game two: FCL Twins 5, FCL Red Sox 1
    Box Score
    SP: Develson Aria: 3 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 4 K
    HR: Alerick Soularie (1), Ricardo Oliver (1)
    Multi-hit games: Alerick Soularie (2-for-2, HR, 2 R, 2 RBI), Alexander Pena (2-for-4, RBI)
    While the first game was considerably unremarkable, game two was anything but. This type of glow-up has not been seen since George Gordon Meade took over command of the Army of the Potomac.
    In a level of irony well-suited for Alanis Morissette, the FCL Twins scored as many runs in this game as they had in the previous encounter. Alerick Soularie demanded that his presence be acknowledged as he blasted his first career homer in the first inning of the game. In all, three runs would be scored before three outs were netted.
    All three pitchers for the FCL Twins left the game with a clean slate. Develson Aria proved that he is more than just a phenomenal name, and he held the Red Sox scoreless in his start. Danny Moreno and Samuel Perez were called upon to relieve Aria, and both players evaded allowing any earned runs.
    TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY
    Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Austin Schulfer
    Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Caleb Hamilton
    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) - 0-3
    #6 – Keoni Cavaco (Fort Myers) – 0-4, 2 K
    #7 – Gilberto Celestino (St. Paul) – 1-4, R, K
    #8 – Josh Winder (St. Paul) – Injured List (Right Shoulder Impingement)
    #9 – Aaron Sabato (Fort Myers) – Did not play
    #10 – Matt Wallner (Cedar Rapids) – 0-4, K
    #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) – 0-4, BB, K
    #16 – Spencer Steer (Wichita) – 0-4, K
    #17 – Wander Javier (Cedar Rapids) – 1-4, 3B, 2 K
    #18 – Alerick Soularie (FCL Twins) – 2-5, HR, 2 R, 2 RBI, BB, K
    #19 – Edwar Colina (Rehab) – Injured List (elbow)
    #20 – Chris Vallimont (Wichita) – Did not pitch
    SUNDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS
    Dunedin @ Fort Myers (10:00 AM) RHP Sawyer Gipson-Long
    Midland @ Wichita (12:05 PM) RHP Cole Sands 
    Quad Cities @ Cedar Rapids (1:05 PM) RHP Cody Laweryson
    Louisville @ St. Paul (1:05 PM) LHP Lewis Thorpe 
     
  21. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from glunn for an article, Minor League Report 8/7 Walk-Off Winners   
    TRANSACTIONS
    C Jeferson Morales promoted to A+ Cedar Rapids  RHP Luis Rijo placed on 7-day IL at A+ Cedar Rapids (right elbow sprain) C Allante Hall transferred to A Fort Myers LHP Sean Gilmartin placed on 7-day IL at AA Wichita  C Jair Camargo placed on 7-day IL at A+ Cedar Rapids retroactive to August 6th (right hamstring strain) RHP Josh Winder placed on 7-day IL at AAA St. Paul retroactive to July 22nd (right shoulder impingement) Saints Sentinel
    St. Paul 4, Louisville 2
    Box Score
    Ian Hamilton: 3 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 4 K
    HR: None
    Multi-hit games: None
    St. Paul was nearly no-hit on Saturday.
    Bo Takahashi held the squad hitless while he was on the mound but the team was able to pounce on rehabbing reliever Tejay Antone for their first hit, and their first run of the game.
    The run tied the game; a fact aided in no small part by the Saints pitching staff on Saturday. It was a bullpen game and Ian Hamilton drew the first straw. Hamilton was able to shed his previous issues with command, and staunchly allowed no Reds hitter to reach base via the walk. All in all, Hamilton tossed three quality innings.
    The game was even at one headed into the 9th inning. Ryan Mason ran into some trouble, and before anyone could even realize it, the bases were loaded. The Bats plated a run but nearly scored another if Jimmy Kerrigan did not hose the runner at home with a great play:
    It looked as if Louisville was going to walk away with a win, but Mark Contreras had other plans. He sent a ball to what was previously an undocumented dimension with his game-tying blast:
    Édgar García ran into some trouble in the top half of the 10th inning, but was able to escape any real damage. In the bottom half of the inning, Ben Rortvedt was called upon to pinch hit for J.T. Riddle and send the home crowd into a frenzy with a walk-off two-run bomb:
    Wind Surge Wisdom
    Wichita 5, Midland 4
    Box Score
    SP: Austin Schulfer: 5 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 6 K
    HR: Caleb Hamilton (7), Jermaine Palacios (16)
    Multi-hit games: Caleb Hamilton (2-for-3, HR, 2B, R, 4 RBI)
    The Wind Surge won a thriller on Saturday.
    Austin Schulfer carried the squad early with yet another wonderful start. The right-hander has been workhorse-like in 2021 with nearly 80 innings on the year; an impressive total considering the non-existent 2020 minor league season.
    Caleb Hamilton backed his starter quickly with a 2nd inning, two-run homer. The 26-year-old is now creeping up on his career-high in homers for a season (9) which he set in 2017. 
    In the least surprising news since the election of George Washington, Jermaine Palacios crushed his 16th homer of the year on Saturday. The blast moved Palacios into the top 10 for homeruns among all minor league shortstops. Yes, all of them. His new-found power is real and, if you happen to be the unfortunate soul pitching to him, terrifying.
    The game was knotted at three headed into the 9th inning. The Rockhounds inched ahead thanks to a Jonah Bride homer, but the Wind Surge refused to end quietly. With the bases loaded, Caleb Hamilton sent everyone home with a sacrifice fly that scored not one, but two runs. Take a look for yourself:
    Kernels Nuggets
    Cedar Rapids 1, Quad Cities 4
    Box Score
    SP: Tyler Beck: 6 IP, 5 H, 4 ER, 1 BB, 5 K
    HR: None
    Multi-hit games: None
    The Kernels lost a clean game on Saturday.
    Tyler Beck’s line looks uglier than reality. Four runs is poor no matter how it’s sliced, but Beck’s runs came in the form of a duo of two-run shots. The sudden nature of home runs reflects a pitcher who was more unlucky than poor. Two pitches made the difference between four earned runs and a potentially better outing.
    In any case, the Kernels offense did little to help Beck. Wander Javier’s 7th inning triple was the lone extra-base hit by Cedar Rapids in the game. In total, only four base hits came off the bats of Kernels hitters on Saturday. 
    For an inkling of good news from this game, Breckin Williams and Andrew Cabezas combined for three perfect innings of relief. The two righties punched out four batters in total.
    Mussel Matters
    Fort Myers 5, Dunedin 3
    Box Score
    SP: Miguel Rodriguez: 3 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 4 K
    HR: None
    Multi-hit games: Jesus Feliz (2-for-4, 2B, R, RBI), Willie Joe Garry Jr. (2-for-4, R)
    Fort Myers won a (somewhat) close one on Saturday.
    Despite falling down into a quick 1-0 pit, the Mighty Mussels easily rebounded. In the 2nd inning, Ruben Santana grounded home a run and Misael Urbina walked home another to steal the lead from Dunedin. Jesus Feliz singled home a third run in the 3rd inning, and a wild pitch in the 5th plated the final two runs scored by Fort Myers on the night. One has to unleash a truly reckless pitch to score two baserunners. If only the play was televised.
    Both Charles Mack and Nick Anderson reached base four times on Saturday. They combined for enough walks to challenge an old-persons home. 
    But that’s enough for the offense. Let’s honor the pitchers who paved the path for the Mighty Mussels on Saturday. Beyond Miguel Rodriguez, whose great performance was self-evident, Zarion Sharpe held the Blue Jays scoreless for four crucial innings. Combining both of their pitching lines gives you one singular starter who gave up just one run over seven innings of work. That will play.
    Originally, I had written that the Mighty Mussels “won a comfortable one on Saturday”, but that became false in the 9th inning. Steven Cruz was called upon to guard a four-run lead. He would end the game with a two-run lead. But hey, the size of the lead does not matter at all as long as it holds. 
    Complex Chronicles
    Game one: FCL Twins 5, FCL Red Sox 11
    Box Score
    SP: Erasmo Moreno: 3 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 1 K
    R: Emmanuel Rodriguez (5)
    Multi-hit games: Emmanuel Rodriguez (3-for-4, HR, 2B, 2 R, RBI)
    This game was a continuation of the battle that began yesterday, but was suspended. Perhaps the FCL Twins would have preferred it if the matchup was just canceled instead.
    FCL Twins pitchers were struck well and often by the FCL Red Sox offense. No Twin escaped the endeavor without a wounded ERA with the lone exception of John Wilson. 
    There was good news on the offensive front, however. Emmanuel Rodriguez knocked around a pair of extra-base hits, and Alerick Soularie finally graced a baseball diamond as a member of the Twins. Other than that, it is best to leave this game to the history books.
    Game two: FCL Twins 5, FCL Red Sox 1
    Box Score
    SP: Develson Aria: 3 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 4 K
    HR: Alerick Soularie (1), Ricardo Oliver (1)
    Multi-hit games: Alerick Soularie (2-for-2, HR, 2 R, 2 RBI), Alexander Pena (2-for-4, RBI)
    While the first game was considerably unremarkable, game two was anything but. This type of glow-up has not been seen since George Gordon Meade took over command of the Army of the Potomac.
    In a level of irony well-suited for Alanis Morissette, the FCL Twins scored as many runs in this game as they had in the previous encounter. Alerick Soularie demanded that his presence be acknowledged as he blasted his first career homer in the first inning of the game. In all, three runs would be scored before three outs were netted.
    All three pitchers for the FCL Twins left the game with a clean slate. Develson Aria proved that he is more than just a phenomenal name, and he held the Red Sox scoreless in his start. Danny Moreno and Samuel Perez were called upon to relieve Aria, and both players evaded allowing any earned runs.
    TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY
    Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Austin Schulfer
    Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Caleb Hamilton
    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) - 0-3
    #6 – Keoni Cavaco (Fort Myers) – 0-4, 2 K
    #7 – Gilberto Celestino (St. Paul) – 1-4, R, K
    #8 – Josh Winder (St. Paul) – Injured List (Right Shoulder Impingement)
    #9 – Aaron Sabato (Fort Myers) – Did not play
    #10 – Matt Wallner (Cedar Rapids) – 0-4, K
    #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) – 0-4, BB, K
    #16 – Spencer Steer (Wichita) – 0-4, K
    #17 – Wander Javier (Cedar Rapids) – 1-4, 3B, 2 K
    #18 – Alerick Soularie (FCL Twins) – 2-5, HR, 2 R, 2 RBI, BB, K
    #19 – Edwar Colina (Rehab) – Injured List (elbow)
    #20 – Chris Vallimont (Wichita) – Did not pitch
    SUNDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS
    Dunedin @ Fort Myers (10:00 AM) RHP Sawyer Gipson-Long
    Midland @ Wichita (12:05 PM) RHP Cole Sands 
    Quad Cities @ Cedar Rapids (1:05 PM) RHP Cody Laweryson
    Louisville @ St. Paul (1:05 PM) LHP Lewis Thorpe 
     
  22. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from operation mindcrime for an article, Minor League Report (7/31): A New Prospect Approaches   
    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 ⅔ 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 
     
  23. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from dbminn for an article, Trade Deadline Preview: The Seattle Mariners   
    What's Their Situation?
    When writing the title for this article, I thought to add a question mark after the word "Mariners." Such a thing would have served two purposes. The first would have reflected the surprise some may have when they realize that the Seattle Mariners are in wild card contention (1.0 games out as of Tuesday morning), with the second being the enigmatic future of the team. Will they buy? Will they sell? Quite honestly, I am not even sure that Jerry Dipoto knows. On Tuesday, they swung their first major deal in an odd swap with the Astros that, according to Dipoto, will make sense once all of their planned deals have been completed. The team was also in on Adam Frazier before San Diego, as per usual, swooped in to pick him up. In the dead of night on Tuesday, Tyler Anderson was swiped from under the Phillies nose. Knowing Dipoto’s love of deals, we are in for some truly wild stuff.
    What Do They Need?
    Bats, and a lot of them. The team has just a 91 wRC+ as a whole as their team batting average infamously dipped below the Mendoza line for a portion of the year. They have somewhat rebounded as their wRC+ since the start of June is 100, but holes still exist at significant positions. 
    Second base has been a particularly nasty position for them as either Dylan Moore or Shed Long Jr. have participated there this season with little success. They also have no significant prospects at the position. 
    Beyond that, there is no real clear-cut need in the lineup. Many of the Mariners' position players are either in flux due to injuries or are just warming the spot of a significant prospect. Even with their poorly performing players, I find it challenging to put together a trade because the team is in such a major transition. Perhaps they usurp one of those prospects with an unexpected deal, but I do not see that happening. Again, I must stress that nothing is out of question with Dipoto, to the point that them bringing in Miguel Sanó or Max Kepler would not be out of the question.
    Their starting rotation, however, is more apparent as a point of concern. Yusei Kikuchi has been outstanding, and Logan Gilbert looks to be the real deal, but the rest is uninspiring. Chris Flexen is hilariously overperforming, Marco Gonzales has regressed, and Justin Dunn and Justus Sheffield have been flimsy during their time in the majors. They have prospects to fill these spots, but most of them will not be ready until 2022 or beyond. They did fill a need by acquiring Anderson.
    Which Twins Are The Best Fit?
    In a beautiful twist, the best fit may be an ex-Mariner.
    Michael Pineda would be a consistent presence in a rotation full of youthful arms. He could provide the exact type of 5-6 inning guarantee that few other pitchers on their roster can promise. Depending on the price, the team may add him for a more negligible cost than what other, more major names may net.
    A shocking trade for José Berríos may not be out of play. The Mariners have well learned that pitching prospects are far from promises, and Jerry Dipoto is an absolute madman, so a move for an established arm could be in their plans. Still, Berríos looks to depart after 2022, and that kind of uncertainty will probably turn off a team looking towards the future.
    If you squint hard enough, then a surprising deal for Luis Arraez also may be in the cards. The second base position has been a black hole for the team, and they could use a long-term player with the ability to play third as Kyle Seager is unlikely to return following the end of the season. The team knows this as well-they tried to acquire Frazier, as mentioned earlier, and other second baseman have been connected to them Still, the Twins' asking price for Arraez and the Mariners' willingness to meet that mark are probably on two separate continents. 
    Beyond them, the team may look to add a bullpen depth piece like Tyler Duffey. Originally I had written Hansel Robles in here as well, but his performance on Tuesday reflects a player who is anything but valuable.
    Do you like pitching prospects? Good. Their top 7 or so prospects are likely untouchable, but beyond them, they have:
    Wyatt Mills: A 26-year-old pure reliever with enough funk to make George Clinton proud. Eric Longenhagen wrote that Mills' "combo of repertoire depth (though he's been exclusively fastball/slider so far in the big leagues) and command are both rare for a reliever." Yes, a pure reliever prospect is not the most exciting option, but he would satisfy a desperate need. 
    Sam Carlson: A 22-year-old Minnesota boy with upside. Carlson is almost entirely unknown as a prospect as a combination of Tommy John surgery and an absent minor league season in 2020 forced him to go four years between throwing a pitch in a professional setting. In any case, Carlson's pedigree as a 2nd round pick reflects an arm with potential.
    Matt Brash: A more typical hard-throwing righty with quality stuff. Brash is a prototypically modern pitching prospect who possesses great ability with questionable command. If he reigns it in, he's an All-Star; if not, he's a reliever. He can be yet another lotto ticket in the Twins farm.
    Review:
    Quite frankly, a trade with the Mariners made much more sense a week ago-when this article was first written. The Cruz trade and the Anderson deal have thrown any predictions out the window. All I can really say now is "be prepared for something weird from this team."
    The Mariners are genuinely in the great unknown as a team. All signs point towards them selling, but their record so far has gifted them a chance to become soft buyers in the hope that other franchises crash and burn around them. Players like Duffey, Pineda, and potentially Robles may be of interest to them. The partnership is certainly odd, but it would not be all too surprising if the two teams find a way to make a deal with each other. Remember, the Twins did trade Zach Duke to the Mariners in 2018, so a prior relationship does exist.
  24. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from operation mindcrime for an article, Game Score: Angels 6, Twins 2   
    Box Score
    Bailey Ober: 5 ⅓ IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 4 K (67.7% strikes)
    HR: Max Kepler (13), Brent Rooker (2)
    Bottom 3 in WPA: Miguel Sanó (-0.236), Jorge Alcala (-0.149), Danny Coulombe (-0.109)
    Win Probability Chart (via Fangraphs)

    Early Offense
    Saturday night was characterized by a distinct lack of hitting ability, but Sunday quickly proved to be a different story. Max Kepler continued his hot streak by blasting a lead-off homer to kick off the scoring. In the time it took this author to inform his mom of what Kepler did, Brent Rooker, the breaker of no-hitters, absolutely launched a titanic bomb that landed somewhere in Canada. 
    Coming into the game, Kepler had been slugging .597 since July 4th (date chosen for no particular reason). A streak of good health has been a blessing for the outfielder who has been inconsistent since his 2019 breakout. For Rooker, the opportunity is golden. The DH spot is wide open now that Nelson Cruz is on the Rays, and Rooker must impress in a speedy manner if he wishes to be a mainstay in 2022 and beyond. Blasting a ball like that off of a righty is an excellent start.
    A Familiar Face Returns
    Jake Cave made his first start for the Twins since May 12th. The added depth is much welcomed as the team has run through approximately 1053 different center fielders in 2021. Cave can provide relief for a struggling Gilberto Celestino. This is more of a result of improper seasoning than an indictment on Celestino’s upside, which simply needs more time to be seen. At any rate, it’s good to see Cave back off the IL.
    Ober The Hills And Far Away
    The oak-like rookie made another impressive start on Sunday. Ober punched out four while allowing a pair of earned runs in what is now his longest career start (5 ⅓ IP). Ober could have gone longer, but the team has been especially careful in limiting his innings in 2021 since he did not get to pitch in games in 2020. His xFIP of 4.19 on the year places him among names like Zack Greinke, Aaron Civale, and Casey Mize.
    Ober may only make a handful of starts down the stretch, though. Sunday’s affair brought him to 59 ⅓ innings pitched split between St. Paul and Minnesota in 2021. His previous high mark came in 2019 when Ober threw 78 ⅔ innings between three levels of the minors. It is unclear just how many more innings the team will allow him to throw-either in an effort to match his career high or lightly pass it-but it can be solidly predicted that the team will be conservative in his workload going forward. Enjoy watching him while you can!
    Where Did The Momentum Go?
    Despite getting off to a fast 2-0 start, the Twins let their lead slowly slip away. Max Stassi proved to be an especially pesky enemy as he tripled and homered to bring the game to a tie. With the game tied, the unrivaled Shohei Ohtani took one look at a hanging Danny Coulombe slider and bazooka’d it out of right field. 
    After Rooker’s homerun, the Twins offense let Jamie Barria settle into a groove. The righty put the homers behind him, and cruised through seven innings of work with just four baserunners allowed after the homers. None of the two Twins hits after the 1st went for extra bases. The inability of the Twins to push more runs across after getting off to such a hot start has been an issue the entire season and, once again, put a dent in their chances of winning on Sunday.
    It was a close 3-2 game headed into the top of the 9th. The game was still well within grasp for the Twins even if they did not have the strongest part of the lineup set up for the bottom of the inning. But, things got messy. Jorge Alcala gave up a single, a double, and another single in succession, and the Angels notched two more runs. Los Angeles would have six runs on the board when it was all said and done. 
    Postgame Interviews
     
    Bullpen Usage Spreadsheet 
      TUE WED THU FRI SAT SUN TOT Colomé 26 22 0 11 0 10 69 Alcala 24 0 0 0 10 24 58 Duffey 0 38 0 0 0 0 38 Thielbar 17 16 0 0 16 0 49 Coulombe 5 0 32 0 0 18 55 Rogers 0 0 0 18 0 0 18 Robles 7 0 0 0 0 0 7 Minaya 0 0 0 20 0 0 20 MORE FROM TWINS DAILY
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  25. Like
    Matt Braun got a reaction from nclahammer for an article, Minor League Report (7/24): Some Strong Corn   
    TRANSACTIONS
    INF Tzu-Wei Lin transferred from 7-day IL to 60-day IL
    Saints Sentinel
    St. Paul 3, Omaha 1
    Box Score
    Andrew Albers: 5 ⅔ IP, 6 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 6 K
    HR: Drew Maggi (11)
    Multi-hit games: Tomás Telis (2-for-4, 2 RBI)
    The Saints took down the Omaha powerhouse on Saturday.
    Andrew Albers was brilliant in his start. The 35-year-old lefty almost completely shut down an offense powered by some serious prospect talent. I hope that some grateful teammates took him out for a nice steak dinner afterwards.
    Drew Maggi continued his power surge as he blasted his 11th homer of the year in the 6th inning. The blast gave him a new career high in home runs in any given season over his extensive minor league career. He may end up with the Twins if (when) Andrelton Simmons is traded.
    The big hit of the night came off the bat of Tomás Telis. His 7th inning single added two extra-crucial runs for the Saints. 
    Jovani Moran threw a pair of scoreless innings with three strikeouts. It’s difficult to imagine a scenario where he is not pitching for the Twins by September at the latest.
    Wind Surge Wisdom
    Wichita 5, Arkansas 4
    Box Score
    Adam Lau: 3 ⅔ IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 6 K
    HR: Jermaine Palacios (12)
    Multi-hit games: Roy Morales (2-for-5, R, RBI), Andrew Bechtold (2-for-4), D.J. Burt (2-for-4)
    Wichita played an absolute dog fight of a game on Saturday. 
    Adam Lau kicked off the game with an impressive start. He was not meant to get many outs, but the ones he got were efficient. It’s hard to criticize a guy who allowed just two baserunners over 11 outs.
    The offense was there for Wichita early as Roy Morales singled home the first run of the game in the 3rd inning and Jermaine Palacios bashed a three-run homer in the 5th. 
    If Palacios is not the outright most surprising minor leaguer of the year, he’s at least in the conversation. He quietly returned to the Twins after the Rays were unable to work their magic on him. 2021 has been nothing but a rake fest as he came into Saturday with a 120 wRC+. It has been a good year for Palacios.
    It was looking like Wichita could set the game to cruise control on their way to an easy W, but things did not shake out that way. Some shenanigans in the 7th inning by Arkansas knotted the game and suddenly upped the stakes.
    The game went into extras where the Wind Surge were able to take advantage of Manfredball an honest runner in scoring position with a sacrifice fly by Aaron Whitefield. Zach Neff and Ryan Mason combined forces to hold the Travelers scoreless in the bottom of the inning, and Wichita was able to walk away with a win. 
    Kernels Nuggets
    Cedar Rapids 10, Beloit 4
    Box Score
    Ben Gross: 5 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 8 K
    HR: Michael Helman (9), Matt Wallner (6)
    Multi-hit games: Matt Wallner (3-for-5, HR, 2 R, RBI), Michael Helman (3-for-4, HR, 2B, 4 R, RBI, BB), Kyle Schmidt (3-for-5, R), Gabriel Maciel (3-for-4, 2B, R, 3 RBI, BB), Daniel Ozoria (2-for-5, RBI)
    Something, something, beware the 7th inning, something, something.
    Ben Gross, was, uhh, gross in his start on Saturday. The righty struck out eight batters over five shutout innings and was generally the man in charge. I mean, how can a pitcher not succeed when he has such an appropriate last name? He proves the theory of nominative determinism.
    The Kernels supported Gross early as Gabriel Maciel knocked home the first run of the game in the 2nd inning, and Michael Helman added on in the 5th frame with a solo shot.
    Oh, but did things ever get wacky after that.
    The Snappers responded in the 7th inning with four runs off a sacrifice fly and a bases-clearing double. Suddenly, the game was tilted four to two in favor of Beloit.
    The Kernels were having none of it. In the bottom half of the inning, a wild pitch brought the game to within a run. Maciel then doubled home two runs to gain the lead before Edouard Julien doubled home two more runs for posterity sake. 
    Matt Wallner  homered in the 8th inning just for giggles (and for scoring, I guess). Daniel Ozoria singled home yet another run, and Julien walked in the tenth (and final) run for good measure. Eight hitters for the Kernels reached base multiple times on Saturday.
    Mussel Matters
    Fort Myers 1, Daytona 4
    Box Score
    Orlando Rodriguez: 5 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 7 K
    HR: None
    Multi-hit games: Yunior Severino (2-for-3, RBI, BB)
    Fort Myers attempted a tribute to the Twins on Saturday, as they also could not find much offense on the day.
    Starter Orlando Rodriguez did his job well as he allowed just a pair of earned runs over his five innings of work. He walked three, which is a bit much, but he also struck out seven batters, which is also a bit much. So it evened out in the end.
    The offense just could not find anything, however. Will Holland and Nick Anderson were both able to work a pair of walks, and Yunior Severino got on base three times. Outside of them, the box score is quite dusty. Aaron Sabato and Misael Urbina both had especially rough games as they combined for seven strikeouts without a hit. You tend not to win many games when your three and four hitters put up lines like that. 
    Matthew Swain and Steven Cruz combined for three shutout innings in relief of Rodriguez.
    Complex Chronicles
    FCL Twins 4, FCL Red Sox 7
    Box Score
    Juan Mendez: 3 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 3 K
    HR: Kala’i Rosario (2)
    Multi-hit games: None
    The FCL Twins lost on Saturday, but not without a vicious comeback attempt. 
    The game was even through four as Juan Mendez did his best to support his team on the mound. He would end with the best line of any FCL Twins pitcher on Saturday.
    A double by what I can only assume is someone’s superhero alter-ego, a man named Blaze Jordan, kicked off a run of, well, runs for the Red Sox. They would plate seven over three innings in what ended up being the dagger. 
    The FCL Twins did not go gentle into that good night. Kala’i Rosario blasted a 9th inning grand slam that, while awesome, was not enough to turn the game around. 
    TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY
    Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Ben Gross
    Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Michael Helman
    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, R, K
    #6 – Keoni Cavaco (Fort Myers) – 0-4
    #7 – Gilberto Celestino (Minnesota) – 0-3, 3 K
    #8 – Josh Winder (St. Paul) – Did not pitch
    #9 – Aaron Sabato (Fort Myers) – 0-3, BB, 3 K
    #10 – Matt Wallner (Cedar Rapids) – 3-5, HR, 2 R, RBI
    #11 – Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) – Out for Season (Tommy John surgery)
    #12 – Bailey Ober (Minnesota) – Did not pitch
    #13 – Cole Sands (Wichita) – Did not pitch
    #14 – Brent Rooker (Minnesota) – 1-4, 3 K
    #15 – Misael Urbina (Fort Myers) – 0-4, 4 K
    #16 – Spencer Steer (Wichita) – 0-1, K
    #17 – Wander Javier (Cedar Rapids) – Did not play
    #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
    Daytona @ Fort Myers (10:00 AM) LHP Zarion Sharpe
    Beloit @ Cedar Rapids (1:05 PM) RHP Cody Laweryson 
    Wichita @ Arkansas (1:10 PM) RHP Jordan Balazovic 
    St. Paul @ Omaha (4:05 PM) RHP Griffin Jax
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