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Seth Stohs

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  1. Like
    Seth Stohs got a reaction from Ncgo4 in Article: Twins Minor League Starting Pitcher of July 2014   
    Yesterday, we looked at the top relief pitchers for the month of July. There were a lot of great bullpen performances and many honorable mentions as well. It’s much of the same today as we look at the Minnesota Twins top starting pitchers in July.
     
    This list is a mix of top prospects and pitchers who deserve much more recognition.Honorable Mention
     
    • RHP – JO Berrios – Ft. Myers/New Britain – 5 GS, 2-3, 3.51 ERA, 1.05 WHIP, 25.2 IP, 20 H, 7 BB, 17 K (.220/.290/.319)
    • RHP – Alex Meyer – Rochester – 5 GS, 2-0, 1.55 ERA, 1.17 WHIP, 29.0 IP, 17 H, 17 BB, 34 K (.175/.298/.227)
    • LHP – Sean Gilmartin – Rochester – 6 GS, 1-2, 3.89 ERA, 1.22 WHIP, 37.0 IP, 33 H, 12 BB, 31 K (.244/.311/.356)
    • RHP – Felix Jorge – Elizabethton – 5 GS, 2-1, 2.63 ERA, 1.28 WHIP, 27.1 IP, 27 H, 8 BB, 27 K (.255/.319/.321)
    • LHP – Brandon Easton – GCL Twins – 5 GS, 1-1, 2.45 ERA, 1.14 WHIP, 22.0 IP, 19 H, 6 BB, 15 K (.235/.292/.370)
     
    ---
     
    Number 5 – GCL Twins – RHP Alexis Tapia – 6 G, 4 GS, 3-0, 1.80 ERA, 0.84 WHIP, 25.0 IP, 17 H, 4 BB, 20 K
     
    The Twins signed Tapia out of Venezuela in September of 2012. Less than two years later, he made his debut in the States and doing a very good job in the GCL. Last year in the DSL, he went 2-1 with a 2.13 ERA in 11 games (seven starts). In 42.1 innings, he gave up 32 hits, walked five and struck out 31. He has continued that with the GCL Twins, giving up less than a hit per inning, minimizing walks and getting decent strikeout numbers. In July, opponents hit .193/.240/.284 (.524) against him.
     
    Number 4 – GCL/Elizabethton – LHP Mat Batts – 5 G, 4 GS, 2-0, 1.80 ERA, 0.76 WHIP, 25.0 IP, 15 H, 4 BB, 27 K
     
    The Twins used their 17th round pick this year on this four-year college senior out of UNC-Wilmington. He is also a former intern at Baseball America. However, it is what he has done on the mound since being drafted that has the 23-year-old on this list. He made just three appearances in the GCL before there was a need at Elizabethton. He then made four starts at Elizabethton. At the end of July, he was promoted to Cedar Rapids where he had a very good first start. In July, opponents hit just .179/.225/.286 (.510). He is not a hard-thrower, but he is a pitcher. He’s got the “Twins Pitcher” profile: throws strikes, mixes pitches, knows how to pitch.
     
    Number 3 - Cedar Rapids – RHP Aaron Slegers - 6 GS, 2-2, 1.96 ERA, 0.90 WHIP, 36.2 IP, 28 H, 5 BB, 31 K
     
    At 6-10, Aaron Slegers has the ability to stand out in a crowd. After a strong start in Cedar Rapids this year, he struggled for a couple months. However, he figured some things out in July and posted his best month. Opponents hit just .224/.267/.328 (.595) off him. He gained control and command of his pitches. In fact, the 21-year-old was promoted to Ft. Myers and made his first start on Monday night. Slegers has a low-90s fastball, and as you would expect, a good, downward angle on his pitches. The Twins 5th round pick in 2013 out of Indiana, he will require some patience, but there is reason to be excited about his potential.
     
    Number 2 – New Britain – Tyler Duffey - 6 GS, 5-0, 3.10 ERA, 0.96 WHIP, 40.2 IP, 34 H, 5 BB, 34 K
     

     
    Duffey was the Twins 2012 fifth-round draft pick out of Rice University where he shared closer duties with Twins 2nd round pick JT Chargois. In 2013, he was moved into the starting rotation, and he has been very solid. He certainly has had some ups and downs as a starter, but when he’s on, he gives the feeling that he could pitch in the big leagues. His fastballs come in anywhere from 90 to 95 mph. He has a very good curveball, and his changeup remains his biggest question mark. Things were working well in July when opponents hit just .228/.259/.396 (.655) against him.
     
    And the Twins Minor League Starting Pitcher of the Month is:
     
    Cedar Rapids – RHP Chih-Wei Hu - 6 GS, 5-0, 1.25 ERA, 0.72 WHIP, 36.0 IP, 20 H, 6 BB, 38 K
     
    The Twins outbid several teams for Hu’s services after he had a very impressive amateur career. He was a star in high school as well as in international competitions. The Twins signed him for $220,000 in August of 2012. He spent 2013 in the GCL, and he began 2014 in Elizabethton. In July, he made one start in Elizabethton before a promotion to the Kernels. In each of his six starts, he went six innings. Opponents hit just .156/.206/.195 against him. He has a fastball that can touch 95. He has a good curveball and a solid changeup. He even throws a palm ball. At 6-1 and 215 pounds, the 20-year-old has a sturdy frame. He has an advanced knowledge of pitching and has a chance to be very good.
     
    So there you have it. The top pitchers in the Minnesota Twins farm system in July. What do you think? How would you rank these starting pitchers?
     
    Click here to view the article
  2. Like
    Seth Stohs got a reaction from GoGonzoJournal in Article: Twins Minor League Relief Pitcher of July 2014   
    Would be nice to see Deolis Guerra come up this year. He's really been pretty good the last few years (minus missing a year with a blood clot in his shoulder). He was tremendous this spring and shows a good FB/CU mix. Could be a good 7th inning type guy for 5-6 years. 
  3. Like
    Seth Stohs got a reaction from GoGonzoJournal in Article: Should the Twins Consider a Six-Man Rotation?   
    The following question is asked in jest. Well, maybe in jest. Alright, maybe it is a legitimate question. Is the AAA Rochester starting rotation better than the Minnesota Twins starting rotation?
     
    Right now, the Twins rotation is in a state of flux.Phil Hughes was tremendous from mid-April until mid-June, but he has really struggled the last month. Kyle Gibson has had a solid first, full season in the big leagues, alternating very good performances with some really rough ones. Ricky Nolasco is on the disabled ist after being brutal for the season’s first two-and-a-half months. Mike Pelfrey went on the disabled list early and won’t be back in 2014. Kevin Correia has been pretty good over the course of his last dozen starts after nearly pitching himself out of the rotation. Yohan Pino has been adequate, if mediocre, in his half-dozen starts after ten seasons in the minor leagues. Logan Darnell made his first MLB start opposite Chris Sale, and gets to do the same tonight in Chicago.
     
    Meanwhile, down in Rochester, Trevor May appears ready for a shot in the big leagues. Alex Meyer has had terrible control and command most of the year and yet has put up very strong strikeout numbers and ERA. Sean Gilmartin was promoted to the Red Wings where he has been fine. Kris Johnson is one of the best pitchers in the International League. Mark Hamburger is a former big leaguer who has worked his way back to AAA and is getting an opportunity to start and is doing well.
     
    On Thursday, the Twins acquired lefty Tommy Milone from the A’s in exchange for outfielder Sam Fuld. He has had a sub-4.00 ERA in his 70+ big league starts over the past four seasons yet found himself in the A’s minor leagues because of their ace acquisitions in the last month.
     
    As the news of the trade sunk in, I have had one prevailing thought running through my mind. Could the Twins employ a six-man starting rotation? And, who would be in it? And, how would the bullpen look?
     
    Let’s just consider a few of these variables.
     
    Until rosters expand on September 1st, rosters can have just 25 men. We would not want a 14-man pitching staff . That would require a three-man bench. With 13 pitchers, the bullpen would still have just seven members and the bench would have just four options.
     
    Let’s start with the current starters in the rotation. Here are the candidates:
    Phil Hughes – currently in the rotation, has a big contract through 2016. Kevin Correia – currently in the rotation, couldn’t be traded by deadline. Could be dealt (or DFA'd) in August, though his ability to eat innings could prove important. Kyle Gibson – currently in the rotation, would like to finish the season strong and add innings. Yohan Pino – currently in the rotation, earned MLB debut at age 30, has been adequate. Logan Darnell – currently in the rotation, 25-year-old lefty has been solid at Rochester much of the season. Here are some of the other starting pitching options:Ricky Nolasco – currently on the disabled list, could soon be sent on a two-game rehab stint before returning to rotation. Mike Pelfrey – out for the year after surgery. Kris Johnson – one of the best pitchers in the International League, has struggled in three big league starts. Trevor May – Assume he would be up with the Twins by now if not for his calf injury. Threw 77 pitches on Wednesday. Could make one more AAA start to build to 100 pitches. Alex Meyer – Has a good ERA and leads the IL in strikeouts this year, but he is walking too many and at times is inefficient with his pitches. Throw hard. Has the pitches to be great. Tommy Milone – Has spent parts of four seasons in the big leagues. Is 32-22 with a sub-4.00 ERA. Doesn’t throw hard at all, but he has made it work in the majors. In my opinion, now that the Twins are not contending and we’re into August, it is important that the remainder of the season be about evaluation of certain players. For some, it is about whether they should remain on the 40 man roster in the off-season. For some, it is determining if they can be a big league starter or more likely be moved to the bullpen. For others, it’s just about keeping them strong and healthy the rest of the way. 
    I humbly submit this pitching staff for August:
     
    Starters: Phil Hughes, Kevin Correia, Kyle Gibson, Tommy Milone, Trevor May, Yohan Pino
    Relievers: Glen Perkins, Casey Fien, Brian Duensing, Caleb Thielbar, Anthony Swarzak, Ryan Pressly, Sam Deduno
     
    Conspicuously absent from the bullpen is Jared Burton. Ideally, he could be traded in August, even if the Twins pick up the amount of his buyout. If not, he could be DFA'd. With six starters, it’s important to have a few guys who can eat two or more innings. Duensing, Pressly, Swarzak and Deduno can do that. Later in the month, it would be great to see Kevin Correia traded (or DFA'd) to open up a roster spot. (Note that it would be great for Twins fans, not so much for Correia, of course.)
     
    Then in September:
     
    Starters: Phil Hughes, Kyle Gibson, Tommy Milone, Trevor May, Ricky Nolasco, Logan Darnell
    Relievers: Glen Perkins, Casey Fien, Brian Duensing, Anthony Swarzak, Alex Meyer, Ryan Pressly, Sam Deduno, Michael Tonkin, Yohan Pino, Kris Johnson (Jared Burton, Kevin Correia – if they are still there)
     
    By September, Ricky Nolasco should be back. It will be important to get him a handful of starts to go into the offseason strong and comfortable that he can succeed again. As you can see, I’d move Pino to the bullpen as another long relief option. You could, with the expanded rosters, have Darnell and Meyer piggyback each other in starts, maybe each throwing four innings, as both are part of the future. Kris Johnson’s role as a big leaguer could be in the bullpen at this point, and it would be good to see him in that role for a few weeks to determine if that is a real option for him.
     
    I am certainly not advocating a six-man rotation throughout a big league season as a rule. I’m saying that now that the Twins are not contending, it’s important to protect some arms while also getting to see some other arms in roles. It’s much more difficult to do in August when the roster is limited to 25, but in September, I think it makes the world of sense.
     
    I believe in giving guys opportunities, not just the top prospects, but also the guys who have paid their dues. I think September will be an important evaluation time for the front office on several players and that they need to use that month and the expanded rosters to find out what they have. It will be just a part of the evaluation, but an important part.
     
    What do you think? Is a six-man rotation feasible? What would you do?
     
    Click here to view the article
  4. Like
    Seth Stohs got a reaction from Oxtung in Article: Should the Twins Consider a Six-Man Rotation?   
    Just to make sure... I don't think a 6-man rotation is something that the Twins should do all year long. I'm just saying maybe in August and I think certainly in September. 
     
    Also above someone mentioned shutting down Nolasco and then trying to trade him. The only way anyone would even consider trading for him is if he pitches, and pitches effectively in late August and September. Of course, if he pitches well then, why trade him?
     
    And yes, 40 man rosters can easily be made available when necessary.
  5. Like
    Seth Stohs got a reaction from James in Article: Twins Minor League Report (7/29): Berrios Injured   
    This morning, he's fine. No pain, no tightness. No further medical evaluation planned.
  6. Like
    Seth Stohs got a reaction from James in Article: Gary Lucas On Jo Berrios   
    Plus fastball, plus curveball, and now plus changeup. that's pretty good.
  7. Like
    Seth Stohs got a reaction from Willihammer in Article: Gary Lucas On Jo Berrios   
    Recently, I had the chance to chat with Gary Lucas, former big league pitcher and currently the pitching coach of the Ft. Myers Miracle. When asked to write about JO Berrios a few weeks ago, I thought Lucas would be the perfect person to talk to. The following gets into the mind of a man who have been in and around the game of baseball for a long time.Recently, I had the chance to chat with Gary Lucas, former big league pitcher and currently the pitching coach of the Ft. Myers Miracle. When asked to write about JO Berrios a few weeks ago, I thought Lucas would be the perfect person to talk to. The following gets into the mind of a man who have been in and around the game of baseball for a long time.
     
    Lucas is in his first year as the Miracle pitching coach. Last year, he was the pitching coach in Cedar Rapids. He has played a large role in the development of JO Berrios over these last two seasons. I talked to him before the Futures Game about the Twins pitching prospect.
     
    As a 19-year-old last year in Cedar Rapids, Berrios performed admirably. He went 7-7 with a 3.99 ERA. In 103.2 innings, he gave up 105 hits, walked 40 and struck out 100. This year, in 16 starts with the Miracle, he went 9-3 with a 1.96 ERA. In 96.1 innings, he gave up just 78 hits, walked just 23 and struck out 109. A significant, and dominating performance even before considering that he only turned 20 years old in late May.
     
    Lucas said there are many reasons for the improvement in Berrios’s performance including his maturity and what he learned last year. However, he highlighted a couple of specific things that he has worked on.
     
    “For the last month, he was pitching, for the most part, on four days’ rest. We've had a six man rotation here. I just thought a little less rest helped him to go out there on a more regular basis and have a more regular schedule and he didn't miss too many starts. I think it allowed him to get into a groove. I think the six man rotation is fine, and there are certainly some great reasons for it. I just think in his case, he had a little better feel for all his pitches when he was pitching a little more often.” Lucas continued, “So often, if you have a six man rotation between rain outs and off days, it could be seven days before you pitch. Now a lot of college guys are used to that, when they only pitch once a week, but for Jose being so young in the development stage, I think he reaped the benefit of working more often. We watched his workload in between starts and certainly tried to work on some things to better himself, but I just thought that was one of the major reasons.”
     
    There was obviously more to it than just pitching on a regular basis. Lucas also says that it was usage and confidence in another pitch.
     
    “The second reason I think that he progressed so well is he committed to using his changeup a little bit more. I think we've got a kid that mixed his pitches really well. He probably threw 60-to-70 percent fastballs most of the time in his starts. He probably threw 15-to-20 percent curveballs and 15-to-20 percent changeups, and it got to the point where the changeup wasn't just to get them off his fastball, it was an out pitch. He got a lot of swing and misses on all three, but I noticed he was getting a lot of swing and misses on his changeup in two-strike situation.”
     
    So, is the success of the changeup due to deception or movement?
     
    “This kid has some savvy. I noticed to right-handed hitters, he would throw it low-middle and it would dive in the dirt between the plate and the catcher. He got a lot of good results, some off balance swings when it went low-middle. Then he has the ability to turn it over to left-handed hitters, and some really good, off balance swings from left-handers when the ball would sink down and away to left-handers. He's certainly got touch and feel for that pitch so in essence, by throwing it a little bit more he got a feel for when to use it and how to use it.”
     
    So pitching on a regular basis and the development and usage of the changeup have been very important for Berrios. He has also put up number which, according to Lucas has “helped his confidence go sky high.”
     
    Download attachment: JO Berrios 5.JPG
     
    Berrios gave up five runs in five innings in his AA debut two weeks ago. In two starts since then, he has given up a total of two runs on seven hits in 13 innings. He’s walked one and struck out nine. I talked to Lucas just before he made his first AA start and asked if he believed that Berrios was ready for this jump.
     
    “I do think he's ready for this Double-A jump. I think he's done most everything, in my guess, that you would want a young prospect to do at the A ball level in two years; certainly in innings, certainly with improvement on usage of pitches, mix of his pitches, command of his pitches, results. I think it's time to be tested. I don't think there's a reason to hold him back. We have to find out if the hitters who are better and more experienced are going to lay off stuff that is out of the zone, and if he'll make an adjustment and get it back in the zone, and get hitters out in the zone. You know, if you're a good Major League pitcher, you have to get outs in the zone. You can't get a lot of hitters to chase. You certainly have to have pitches that look like strikes and get the hitters to swing and miss at times, but I think you also have to be ready to challenge hitters in the strike zone. So, I think that's the next step, to see if he's got enough stuff in the zone that produces results. The better hitters know themselves. They chase less. They wait him out, and then we see what we've got. He makes quick adjustments. I saw enough legitimate strikes here that he wasn't getting all of his results out of the zone. He was in the zone with enough pitches here to merit the move up. We just need to see if experienced hitters react to him in any different way, so yes, I do think he's ready for this move.”
     
    There is a likelihood that he could still miss a start at some point this season, likely fairly soon.
     
    “I think he could benefit from a rest. I know there was some talk before he went up that we should rest his arm at some point, and I’m sure after the Futures Game, it'll probably be discussed of where to skip a start, and that'll be beneficial. 100 innings last year, and I'm sure he's on track to get 150 or more, and that's pretty good for a 20-year-old trying to be a guy for us in the big leagues eventually and pitch that 200 innings that we'd all like to see. But he's so young that you want to protect that arm and that's one thing I think they'd have to consider.”
     
    The Futures Game was a big deal for Berrios, according to Lucas.
     
    “I think it is. I think he looks back, playing for the WBC team. I think that gave him a taste of what he is capable of doing, to get that accolade. We have to do, as Twins pitching coaches, a half-year progress report on each pitcher, and I sat down with Jose like the others about mid-May and went over his goals, what he wanted to accomplish this year. Right away, without hesitation, he rattled off his three goals, and one of them was to be elected and pitch in the Futures Game along with making our All Star team in the Florida State League and hopefully getting moved up to AA.”
     
    Check. Check. Check.
     
    Lucas continued, “For such a young age, he is mature beyond his years. He has a mission that he is on. You can see that he is keeping his focus to stay on that path, and these are some goals he's reached. I know staying healthy would be another one. This is a big, big deal for him, I think, that he's accomplished this.”
     
    Berrios is not a finished product, which should really be exciting for Twins fans. “I still think he's got a lot of things to work on, to improve on. At his age, who wouldn't? He's not in the big leagues yet, but he's certainly made some huge strides in a quick period of time.”
     
    Gary Lucas, and the entire Twins organization, is excited about Berrios and what he could become. “We're just tickled in the organization that we have a young man of his stature and makeup and talent that's progressing, so it's really, really good for the Twins organization to have a pitcher of this caliber in our minor leagues.”
     
    Twins fans are excited too about a rotation that potentially could include the likes of Alex Meyer, Trevor May, Kyle Gibson and JO Berrios. The thing is, with how Berrios has performed, and with his work ethic, it may happen sooner than anyone might have guessed.
     
    Click here to view the article
  8. Like
    Seth Stohs got a reaction from gunnarthor in Article: Gary Lucas On Jo Berrios   
    Recently, I had the chance to chat with Gary Lucas, former big league pitcher and currently the pitching coach of the Ft. Myers Miracle. When asked to write about JO Berrios a few weeks ago, I thought Lucas would be the perfect person to talk to. The following gets into the mind of a man who have been in and around the game of baseball for a long time.Recently, I had the chance to chat with Gary Lucas, former big league pitcher and currently the pitching coach of the Ft. Myers Miracle. When asked to write about JO Berrios a few weeks ago, I thought Lucas would be the perfect person to talk to. The following gets into the mind of a man who have been in and around the game of baseball for a long time.
     
    Lucas is in his first year as the Miracle pitching coach. Last year, he was the pitching coach in Cedar Rapids. He has played a large role in the development of JO Berrios over these last two seasons. I talked to him before the Futures Game about the Twins pitching prospect.
     
    As a 19-year-old last year in Cedar Rapids, Berrios performed admirably. He went 7-7 with a 3.99 ERA. In 103.2 innings, he gave up 105 hits, walked 40 and struck out 100. This year, in 16 starts with the Miracle, he went 9-3 with a 1.96 ERA. In 96.1 innings, he gave up just 78 hits, walked just 23 and struck out 109. A significant, and dominating performance even before considering that he only turned 20 years old in late May.
     
    Lucas said there are many reasons for the improvement in Berrios’s performance including his maturity and what he learned last year. However, he highlighted a couple of specific things that he has worked on.
     
    “For the last month, he was pitching, for the most part, on four days’ rest. We've had a six man rotation here. I just thought a little less rest helped him to go out there on a more regular basis and have a more regular schedule and he didn't miss too many starts. I think it allowed him to get into a groove. I think the six man rotation is fine, and there are certainly some great reasons for it. I just think in his case, he had a little better feel for all his pitches when he was pitching a little more often.” Lucas continued, “So often, if you have a six man rotation between rain outs and off days, it could be seven days before you pitch. Now a lot of college guys are used to that, when they only pitch once a week, but for Jose being so young in the development stage, I think he reaped the benefit of working more often. We watched his workload in between starts and certainly tried to work on some things to better himself, but I just thought that was one of the major reasons.”
     
    There was obviously more to it than just pitching on a regular basis. Lucas also says that it was usage and confidence in another pitch.
     
    “The second reason I think that he progressed so well is he committed to using his changeup a little bit more. I think we've got a kid that mixed his pitches really well. He probably threw 60-to-70 percent fastballs most of the time in his starts. He probably threw 15-to-20 percent curveballs and 15-to-20 percent changeups, and it got to the point where the changeup wasn't just to get them off his fastball, it was an out pitch. He got a lot of swing and misses on all three, but I noticed he was getting a lot of swing and misses on his changeup in two-strike situation.”
     
    So, is the success of the changeup due to deception or movement?
     
    “This kid has some savvy. I noticed to right-handed hitters, he would throw it low-middle and it would dive in the dirt between the plate and the catcher. He got a lot of good results, some off balance swings when it went low-middle. Then he has the ability to turn it over to left-handed hitters, and some really good, off balance swings from left-handers when the ball would sink down and away to left-handers. He's certainly got touch and feel for that pitch so in essence, by throwing it a little bit more he got a feel for when to use it and how to use it.”
     
    So pitching on a regular basis and the development and usage of the changeup have been very important for Berrios. He has also put up number which, according to Lucas has “helped his confidence go sky high.”
     
    Download attachment: JO Berrios 5.JPG
     
    Berrios gave up five runs in five innings in his AA debut two weeks ago. In two starts since then, he has given up a total of two runs on seven hits in 13 innings. He’s walked one and struck out nine. I talked to Lucas just before he made his first AA start and asked if he believed that Berrios was ready for this jump.
     
    “I do think he's ready for this Double-A jump. I think he's done most everything, in my guess, that you would want a young prospect to do at the A ball level in two years; certainly in innings, certainly with improvement on usage of pitches, mix of his pitches, command of his pitches, results. I think it's time to be tested. I don't think there's a reason to hold him back. We have to find out if the hitters who are better and more experienced are going to lay off stuff that is out of the zone, and if he'll make an adjustment and get it back in the zone, and get hitters out in the zone. You know, if you're a good Major League pitcher, you have to get outs in the zone. You can't get a lot of hitters to chase. You certainly have to have pitches that look like strikes and get the hitters to swing and miss at times, but I think you also have to be ready to challenge hitters in the strike zone. So, I think that's the next step, to see if he's got enough stuff in the zone that produces results. The better hitters know themselves. They chase less. They wait him out, and then we see what we've got. He makes quick adjustments. I saw enough legitimate strikes here that he wasn't getting all of his results out of the zone. He was in the zone with enough pitches here to merit the move up. We just need to see if experienced hitters react to him in any different way, so yes, I do think he's ready for this move.”
     
    There is a likelihood that he could still miss a start at some point this season, likely fairly soon.
     
    “I think he could benefit from a rest. I know there was some talk before he went up that we should rest his arm at some point, and I’m sure after the Futures Game, it'll probably be discussed of where to skip a start, and that'll be beneficial. 100 innings last year, and I'm sure he's on track to get 150 or more, and that's pretty good for a 20-year-old trying to be a guy for us in the big leagues eventually and pitch that 200 innings that we'd all like to see. But he's so young that you want to protect that arm and that's one thing I think they'd have to consider.”
     
    The Futures Game was a big deal for Berrios, according to Lucas.
     
    “I think it is. I think he looks back, playing for the WBC team. I think that gave him a taste of what he is capable of doing, to get that accolade. We have to do, as Twins pitching coaches, a half-year progress report on each pitcher, and I sat down with Jose like the others about mid-May and went over his goals, what he wanted to accomplish this year. Right away, without hesitation, he rattled off his three goals, and one of them was to be elected and pitch in the Futures Game along with making our All Star team in the Florida State League and hopefully getting moved up to AA.”
     
    Check. Check. Check.
     
    Lucas continued, “For such a young age, he is mature beyond his years. He has a mission that he is on. You can see that he is keeping his focus to stay on that path, and these are some goals he's reached. I know staying healthy would be another one. This is a big, big deal for him, I think, that he's accomplished this.”
     
    Berrios is not a finished product, which should really be exciting for Twins fans. “I still think he's got a lot of things to work on, to improve on. At his age, who wouldn't? He's not in the big leagues yet, but he's certainly made some huge strides in a quick period of time.”
     
    Gary Lucas, and the entire Twins organization, is excited about Berrios and what he could become. “We're just tickled in the organization that we have a young man of his stature and makeup and talent that's progressing, so it's really, really good for the Twins organization to have a pitcher of this caliber in our minor leagues.”
     
    Twins fans are excited too about a rotation that potentially could include the likes of Alex Meyer, Trevor May, Kyle Gibson and JO Berrios. The thing is, with how Berrios has performed, and with his work ethic, it may happen sooner than anyone might have guessed.
     
    Click here to view the article
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