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  1. In the past, the beginning of the short-season, rookie leagues was right near the time of the MLB Draft. However, now that the draft has been pushed back to July, Opening Day of the short-season leagues came up in a hurry. On Monday, the Florida Complex League and the Dominican Summer League seasons began. At Twins Daily, we will be providing reports on those teams in our daily Minor League Reports. Below you can see how the two Twins affiliates played on Monday. If you missed it, read Nick's Twins Week in Review after you've read about the minor league week. TRANSACTIONS With no Monday Minor League Report, here are the transactions from later on Sunday and on Monday: RHP Ian Hamilton, RHP Jharel Cotton and OF Mark Contreras back to St. Paul. IF Daniel Robertson began rehab stint with FCL Twins. Twins signed RHP Aaron Sanchez to minor-league deal and assigned him to St. Paul. IF Ernie Yake was placed on the Wichita Injured List. RESULTS Previous Week in Review (5/24-5/30):Mighty Mussels Out-Muscle Marauders Tuesday: Another No-No in Ft. Myers and Stranger Things for St. Paul Wednesday: Offensive Fireworks in Cedar Rapids and Emmanuel Rodriguez is On Fire Thursday: Rodriguez Rakes as Mussels Mount Comeback Friday: Prato Paces the Kernels, Strong Pitching Turned In Saturday: Alerick Soularie Hits For the Cycle! Wind Surge Win in Walk-off! Sunday: Steer, Kirilloff, Hamilton Power Home Run Record for Saints MORE TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE CONTENT Prospect Retrospective: Jermaine Palacios Twins Minor League Hitter of the Month - May 2022 Twins Minor League Starting Pitcher of the Month - May 2022 Twins Minor League Relief Pitcher of the Month - May 2022 Reviewing the Jose Berrios Trade SHORT-SEASON RESULTS It was opening day in the short-season leagues on Monday as both the Dominican Summer League Twins and the Florida Complex League Twins played the first game of their seasons. We are going to include these teams in our daily Minor League Reports. FCL Twins 2, FCL Pirates 7 Box Score Starting Pitcher: Develson Aria (3 IP, 5 H, 4 ER, 2 BB, 6 K) Multi-Hit Games: Alexander Pena (2-for-2, R, 2 RBI), Ismael Perez (2-for-3, R, SB) 2B: Alexander Pena (1) HR: Alexander Pena (1) Rehab Players: Daniel Robertson (0-for-2, K) Top Prospects: Danny De Andrade (0-for-4), Fredy Michel (0-for-3, 1 BB, 2 K, SB). DSL Twins 5, DSL Rockies 6 Box Score Starting Pitcher: Julio Bonilla (3 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 1 ER, 3 BB, 4 K) Multi-Hit Games: Anderson Nova (2-for-4, RBI, K), Daniel Pena (2-for-4, R, RBI, K), Javier Roman (2-for-2, HBP) XBH: None. Top Prospects: Bryan Acuna (0-4) WEEK IN REVIEW Triple-A: St. Paul Saints: Week: 4-2, @ Iowa Season: 24-29 overall, 9th place out of ten teams in the International League West. They are 10 games behind Nashville. After putting up 49 runs in seven games the previous week, the Saints scored 57 runs in six games. Three times the Saints scored more than a dozen runs in a game. The Saints pitching staff gave up 50 runs in seven games the previous week. Last week, they gave up 41 runs in the six games. The Saints hit 18 home runs including a franchise-record seven homers on Sunday afternoon. Seven hitters had an OPS over .960. It was a good week for the Saints, and now they head home to take on the former Twins Triple-A affiliate, the best team in the whole International League. Get your tickets here! Alex Kirilloff was named the Twins Minor League Player of the Week and the International League Hitter of the Week. In four games, he went 8-for-17 and hit .471/.571/1.353 (1.924) with three doubles, four homers, and eight RBI. He walked four times with just three strikeouts. Caleb Hamilton played in three games and went 4-for-8. He hit .500/.667/1.375 (2.042) with a double, two home runs, and six RBI. He also had four walks. Tim Beckham finally made his way to St. Paul. He played in four games and went 8-for-17. He hit .471/.526/.882 (1.408) with a double, two homers, and seven RBI. Spencer Steer was one of two Saints to play in all six games. He went 7-for-30 and hit .233/.303/.700 (1.003) with two doubles, four homers, and 11 RBI. Jake Cave played in five games and went 8-for-22. He hit .364/.440/.682 (1.122) with two doubles, a triple, a homer, and three RBI. Elliot Soto went 4-for-16 in five games. He hit .250/.400/.563 (.963) with two doubles and a home run. He also walked four times. Michael Helman was the second Saint who played in all six games. He went 7-for-26 and hit .269/.367/.462 (.829) with two doubles, a home run and three RBI. The best start for a Saints pitcher last week came from Mario Sanchez. He gave up two runs on five hits over an impressive 7 2/3 innings. He walked one and struck out two and deserves bonus points from the whole team and front office for getting through that many innings. Tyler Viza pitched in three games, and finished two of them. He gave up one run on two hits over five innings. He struck out six batters without a walk. Austin Schulfer worked 3 2/3 innings over two appearances. He allowed an unearned run on two hits. He walked two and struck out four batters. What’s Next? #OldFriend ALERT! The Rochester Red Wings, the long-time Twins Triple-A affiliate, will be making their first appearance at CHS FIeld to take on the Saints this week. The 35-19 Red Wings are managed by former Twins C/DH Matthew LeCroy. Pitching Probables (RHP Daniel Gossett, RHP Aaron Sanchez, RHP Ronny Henriquez, TBD, TBD, TBD) Double-A Wichita Wind Surge Week: 4-2, hosting Frisco Season: 30-19 overall, 1st place in the Texas League North Division. They remain just 1 1/2 game ahead of Tulsa (28-20). The Wind Surge continue to win and find different ways to do it. Sometimes they score. Sometimes they pitch. This week, the games were mostly low scoring, but Wichita had another winning week. Over the six games, they outscored Frisco 23-17. The pitching staff was fantastic. They gave up more than three runs only once during the week. Here are some of the top performances for the Wind Surge this past week: Matt Canterino tossed 3 2/3 scoreless innings. He gave up two hits, walked four and struck out four. Steven Cruz and Osiris German each pitched twice and worked 3 1/3 innings. German gave up just one hit and struck out five batters. Cruz gave up two unearned runs and struck out four batters. Kody Funderburk pitched twice, including one start. In six innings, he gave up just one run on four hits. He walked two and struck out six bases. Matt Wallner played in all six games. He went 8-for-22 and hit .364/.417/.545 (.962) with a double and a home run. He stole two bases. Jair Camargo played in three games before going on the IL. He went 3-for-12 (.250) with a double, two homers and five RBI. Likewise, Alex Isola went on the IL after just one game last week. He had a double and a homer, and he walked once. Chris Williams had just three hits and batted .188, but he had a double and two homers. 2021 draft pick Ernie Yake went 3-for-9 (.333) and hit two doubles, including a huge bases-clearing double on Sunday against Frisco. What’s Next? The Wind Surge travel to Arkansas for six games against the Mariners’ affiliate. The Travelers are 27-24 and in third place in the North Division. Pitching Probables (RHP Blayne Enlow, RHP Matt Canterino, RHP Casey Legumina, RHP Louie Varland, RHP Simeon Woods Richardson, RHP Blayne Enlow) High-A: Cedar Rapids Kernels Week: 4-2, @ Lansing Season: 33-18 overall, 1st place in the Midwest League West Division, 2.0 games ahead of Wisconsin (31-20). They are 5.0 games ahead of South Bend (28-23). In the first half of the week, the Kernels went 1-2, though their win was by a score of 10-2. They went on to win the final three games of the series and scored eight or more runs in each game. Overall, they outscored the Lugnuts 39-28 and were able to increase their division lead by a game. Several Kernels’ hitters had big weeks. Pitching wasn’t quite as strong, but you just have to see what Sean Mooney did. Alerick Soularie has had a tough start to his 2022 season, but he had a big week last week. In five games, he went 6-for-17 and hit .353/.560/.882 (1.442) with a double, a triple, two homers, and six RBI. He also walked eight times. He hit for the cycle on Saturday. Aaron Sabato was named the Midwest League Hitter of the Week. He played in five games and went 8-for-16. He hit .500/.619/.813 (1.432) with two doubles, a homer, and five RBI. He also walked four times. Christian Encarnacion-Strand played in all six games. He went 8-for-27 and hit .296/.387/.704 (1.091) with five doubles, two homers, and four RBI. Yunior Severino returned to the field from the IL. In four games, he went 6-for-16 and hit .375/.474/.563 (.1.037) with a double and a triple. He also walked three times. Anthony Prato played in three games for the Kernels before being promoted to Wichita. In that time, he went 4-for-15 (.267) and had a double, triple, home run and four RBI. He also stole two bases. Sawyer Gipson-Long had the top start of the week for the Kernels. He gave up one run on three hits with two walks over six innings. He struck out three batters. Sean Mooney was the piggyback arm in one game. He tossed four shutout innings. He did not give up a hit. He walked one and struck out ten batters. Cody Laweryson also worked once out of the bullpen. In 2 2/3 scoreless innings, he gave up one hit, walked two and struck out three batters. What’s Next? The Kernels will travel to South Bend to take on the Cubs. Pitching Probables (RHP Sawyer Gipson-Long, RHP John Stankiewicz, RHP David Festa, LHP Brent Headrick, LHP Aaron Rozek, LHP Cade Povich) Low-A: Ft. Myers Mighty Mussels Week: 4-2, hosting Tampa Season: 34-16 overall, 1st place in the Florida State League West, 8.0 games ahead of Clearwater (26-24). Ft. Myers was able to increase their lead in the division with a 4-2 week. The Mussel bats outscored the Tarpons 33-17 on the week. It was a terrific week for the pitchers as well, with the team’s second no-hitter of the season on Tuesday. And Emmanuel Rodriguez put together arguably the greatest week of production that I can recall! Emmanuel Rodriguez had a huge week. In five games, he went 7-for-12 and hit .583/.700/1.500 (2.200) with a double, two triples, two homers, and six RBI. He also had seven walks to go with just one strikeout! And he stole a base. No surprise he was named the Florida State League Hitter of the Week. Luis Baez played in five games. He went 4-for-9 and hit .444/.545/.444 (.989) with two walks. He also stole two bases. Kala’i Rosario played in five games and went 6-for-16. He hit .375/.474/.500 (.974) with two doubles and two walks. Mike Paredes was named the Florida State League Pitcher of the Week. In his start, he tossed six scoreless innings. He gave up no hits, walked two, and struck out five batters. Pierson Ohl made a start and threw three scoreless innings. He gave up three hits and walked two batters. All nine outs he recorded came on strikeouts. Ariel Jurado made his first start, a rehab appearance after having Tommy John surgery. He gave up no runs on one hit. He walked two and struck out four batters. Hunter McMahon pitched two games and three innings. He gave up just one hit, walked two and struck out seven batters. Juan Mendez pitched twice and threw two perfect innings. Five of the six outs came on strikeouts. Matt Swain made two appearances with the Mussels before his late-week promotion to Cedar Rapids. In two innings, he struck out four batters. Travis Adams gave up one run in five innings in his start. He struck out eight batters without issuing a walk. What’s Next? The Mighty Mussels make the long trek to Daytona (19-31) for a six-game series. Pitching Probables (LHP Steve Hajjar, TBD, LHP Jaylen Nowlin (vs Chase Petty), TBD, TBD, TBD) PROSPECT SUMMARY This Prospect Summary shows our current Twins Top 20 Prospect Rankings and how they performed last week. The Prospect Tracker will be updated on the first of each month throughout the season. Notice that these pages now include stats and splits, as well as past article links, video and more. #1 - Royce Lewis (St. Paul) - Did Not Play (Season: 34 G, .313/.405/.534 (.940), 12-2B, 1-3B, 5-HR, 30 R, 14 RBI, 18 BB, 32 K) #1 - Royce Lewis (Minnesota) - Did Not Play (.000), 0-2B, 0-HR, 1 RBI, 0 BB, 0 K (Season: 12 G, .300/.317/.550 (.867), 4-2B, 0-3B, 2-HR, 5 R, 5 RBI, 1 BB, 5 K) #2 - Austin Martin (Wichita) - 6 G, 4-for-23 (.174), 0-2B, 1-3B, 0-HR, 0 RBI, 1 BB, 3 K (Season: 46 G, .247/.361/.324 (.685), 7-2B, 2-3B, 1-HR, 34 R, 14 RBI, 23 BB, 28 K, 21 SB, 2 CS) #3 - Jose Miranda (St. Paul) - In MLB (Season: 21 G, .256/.295/.442 (.737), 10-2B, 2-HR, 10 R, 12 RBI, 5 BB, 14 K) #3 - Jose Miranda (Minnesota) - 5 G, 5-for-18 (.278), 1-2B, 2-HR, 4 RBI, 1 BB, 8 K (Season: 25 G, .202/.237/.405 (.641), 6-2B, 4-HR, 8 R, 11 RBI, 3 BB, 22 K) #4 - Jordan Balazovic (St. Paul) - 1 GS, 3.1 IP, 3 R, 2 ER, 5 H, 4 BB, 5 K (Season: 5 GS, 16.1 IP, 21 R, 16 ER, 27 H, 12 BB, 17 K, 0-2, 8.82 ERA, 2.39 WHIP, 6.6 BB/9, 9.4 K/9) #5 - Simeon Woods Richardson (Wichita) - 2 GS, 6.1 IP, 2 ER, 8 H, 3 BB, 8 K (Season: 10 GS, 48.0 IP, 17 R, 16 ER, 37 H, 17 BB, 50 K, 2-2, 3.00 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 3.2 BB/9, 9.4 K/9) #6 - Matt Canterino (Wichita) - 1 GS, 3.2 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 4 BB, 4 K (Season: 11 G, 10 GS, 34.1 IP, 8 R, 7 ER, 17 H, 22 BB, 50 K, 0-1, 1.83 ERA, 1.14 WHIP, 5.8 BB/9, 13.1 K/9) #7 - Spencer Steer (Wichita) - (Season: 35 G, .307/.385/.591 (.976), 13-2B, 1-3B, 8-HR, 27 R, 30 RBI, 14 BB, 23 K) #7 - Spencer Steer (St. Paul) - 6 G, 7-for-30 (.233), 2-2B, 4-HR, 11 RBI, 2 BB, 8 K (Season: 13 G, .255/.349/.636 (.986), 3-2B, 0-3B, 6-HR, 13 R, 15 RBI, 6 BB, 11 K) #8 - Emmanuel Rodriguez (Ft. Myers) - 5 G, 7-for-12 (.583), 1-2B, 2-3B, 2-HR, 6 RBI, 7 BB, 2 K (Season: 45 G, .280/.495/.568 (1.063), 5-2B, 3-3B, 9-HR, 35 R, 25 RBI, 54 BB, 51 K) #9 - Noah Miller (Ft. Myers) - 6 G, 1-for-22 (.045), 1-2B, 0-3B, 0-HR, 1 RBI, 3 BB, 7 K (Season: 45 G, .256/.387/.357 (.744), 7-2B, 2-3B, 2 HR, 33 R, 12 RBI, 34 BB, 51 K) #10 - Marco Raya (Ft. Myers) - 1 GS, 3.2 IP, 4 R, 3 H, 3 BB, 4 K (Season: 8 G, 7 GS, 32.2 IP, 15 R, 12 ER, 26 H, 12 BB, 35 K, 3-1, 3.31 ERA, 1.16 WHIP, 3.3 BB/9, 9.6 K/9) #11 - Cade Povich (Cedar Rapids) - 1 GS, 4.1 IP, 2 R, 3 H, 4 BB, 6 K (Season: 8 GS, 37.0 IP, 19 R, 17 ER, 30 H, 13 BB, 52 K, 3-4, 3.65 ERA, 1.16 WHIP, 3.2 BB/9, 12.6 K/9) #12 - Louie Varland (Wichita) - 1 GS, 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 H, 2 BB, 9 K (Season: 10 G, 9 GS, 52.1 IP, 24 R, 21 ER, 43 H, 24 BB, 62 K, 4-1, 3.61 ERA, 1.28 WHIP, 4.1 BB/9, 10.7 K/9) #13 - Ronny Henriquez (St. Paul) - 1 GS, 4.1 IP, 5 ER, 10 H, 1 BB, 5 K (Season: 8 G, 6 GS, 29.0 IP, 26 R, 37 H, 13 BB, 30 K, 0-2, 8.07 ERA, 1.72 WHIP, 4.0 BB/9, 9.3 K/9) #14 - Blayne Enlow (Wichita) - 1 G, 2.2 IP, 0 ER, 2 H, 3 BB, 4 K (Season: 4 G, 3 GS, 13.1 IP, 10 R, 9 ER, 15 H, 7 BB, 19 K, 0-0, 6.08 ERA, 1.65 WHIP, 4.7 BB/9, 12.8 K/9) #15 - Matt Wallner (Wichita) - 6 G, 8-for-22 (.364), 1-2B, 1-HR, 3 RBI, 2 BB, 7 K (Season: 46 G, .273/.387/.527 (.914), 9-2B, 0-3B, 1-HR, 33 R, 39 RBI, 30 BB, 68 K) #16 - Edouard Julien (Wichita) - 5 G, 5-for-19 (.263), 0-2B, 1-HR, 1 RBI, 2 BB, 7 K (Season: 29 G, .269/.417/.398 (.815), 4-2B, 1-3B, 2-HR, 17 R, 11 RBI, 25 BB, 28 K) #17 - Cole Sands (St. Paul) - Did Not Pitch (Season: 6 G, 5 GS, 18.2 IP, 15 R, 23 H, 6 BB, 21 K, 0-4, 7.23 ERA, 1.55 WHIP, 2.9 BB/9, 10.1 K/9) #17 - Cole Sands (Minnesota) - 1 GS, 4.0 IP, 4 R, 5 H, 4 BB, 4 K (Season: 3 G, 1 GS, 8.0 IP, 7 ER, 9 H, 4 BB, 10 K K, 0-1, 7.88 ERA, 1.63 WHIP, 4.5 BB/9, 11.3 K/9) #18 - Christian Encarnacion-Strand (Cedar Rapids) - 6 G, 8-for-27 (.296), 5-2B, 0-3B, 2-HR, 4 RBI, 3 BB, 7 K (Season: 49 G, .303/.368/.551 (.919), 13-2B, 3-3B, 10-HR, 33 R, 43 RBI, 19 BB, 55 K) #19 - Steve Hajjar (Ft. Myers) - 1 GS, 4.1 IP, 1 ER, 2 H, 2 BB, 7 K (Season: 1 G, 4.1 IP, 1 ER, 2 H, 2 BB, 7 K, (Season: 8 GS, 33.1 IP, 10 R, 8 ER, 17 H, 19 BB, 57 K, 2-1, 2.16 ERA, 1.08 WHIP, 5.1 BB/9, 15.4 K/9) #20 - David Festa (Ft. Myers) - (Season: 2 G, 4.0 IP, 3 ER, 4 H, 0 BB, 6 K, (Season: 0-0, 6.75 ERA, 1.00 WHIP, 0.0 BB/9, 13.5 K/9) #20 - David Festa (Cedar Rapids) - 1 GS, 5 IP, 2 R, 5 H, 2 BB, 5 K (Season: 3 G, 1 GS, 13.2 IP, 4 ER, 10 H, 3 BB, 14 K, 3-0, 2.63 ERA, 0.95 WHIP, 2.0 BB/9, 9.2 K/9) PLAYERS OF THE WEEK Hitter of the Week: Outfielder Emmanuel Rodriguez, Ft. Myers Mighty Mussels This is the second consecutive, and third overall player of the week honor for Rodriguez this season. He was the choice for Hitter of the Month in April. He was solid again in May, and he has started June on fire. Two weeks ago, he went 0-for-12 for the week, but he walked 10 times, continuing to show his much-improved strike zone management. In the two weeks since then, he has played in ten games. He had gone 13-for-30 and hit .433/.591/1.000 (1.591) with a double, two triples, four home runs and 11 RBI. He has also walked 13 times and struck out ten times. Rodriguez played in five games last week at Hammond Stadium against Tampa. He went 7-for-12 and hit .583/.700/1.500 (2.200) with a doubles, two triples, two home runs, and six RBI. He also had seven walks to go with just two strikeouts. Those numbers are just crazy! Overall, he has played in 45 games for Ft. Myers in the pitcher-friendly Florida State League. He has hit .280/.495/.568 (1.063) with five doubles, three triples, nine home runs, and 25 RBI. He is also 11-for-15 in stolen base attempts, and plays a solid center field. Rodriguez signed with the Twins in July 2019 for $2.5 million out of Santiago. He was unable to make his debut until 2021. Last year, in 37 FCL Twins games, he hit .214/346/.524 (.870) with five doubles, two triples, and 10 home runs. He also stole nine bases. Pitcher of the Week: RHP Mike Paredes, Ft. Myers Mighty Mussels Mike Paredes was the Twins 18th round draft pick in 2021 out of San Diego State University. He went to college about 10 miles from where he went to high school, San Diego High School where he was a strong two-way player. As a freshman, he worked mostly out of the bullpen and struck out 56 batters in 51 innings. He also went 1-for-2 with an RBI double. He made four starts in the shortened 2020 season. In 2021, he went 4-0. Upon signing, he pitched in two games for the FCL Twins. He gave up one run on one hit and one walk in four innings. He struck out six batters. This season, he began the season in the Ft. Myers bullpen. Gradually he got extended and then did some piggybacking before entering the team’s rotation. He has made four starts now. Overall, he is 2-1 with a 2.30 ERA. In 31 1/3 innings, he has walked just five batters while striking out 31 batters. In his start last week against Tampa, he struck out five batters over six scoreless, hitless innings. He walked two. Hunter McMahon got the final three outs to keep the no-hitter, the Mussels third no-no over the past nine months, and second this season. In his four starts, he has gradually worked more and more. In his first start, he threw three no-hit innings. In his second start, he threw four, one-hit innings. He went five innings in his third start (two runs on three hits). And, six innings of no-hit ball in his fourth start. What is next for the 21-year-old right-hander? Please feel free to ask questions and discuss the players and the teams in the COMMENTS below.
  2. TRANSACTIONS St. Paul Saints RHP Ariel Jurado was assigned to Low-A Fort Myers on Minor League Rehab assignment SAINTS SENTINEL St. Paul 16, Iowa 7 Box score SP: JC Ramirez - 2 IP, 3 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 1 K HR: Spencer Steer 3 HR (6), Alex Kirilloff 2 HR (6), Caleb Hamilton 2 HR (5), Tim Beckham (2) Multi-Hit Games: Steer (3-4, 5 R, 3 HR (6), 5 RBI (15), BB, HBP), Kirilloff (2-5, 2 R, 2 HR, 4 RBI (20), BB, 2 K), Beckham (2-5, 2 R, HR, RBI (7), BB, K), Michael Helman (3-4, 2 R, SB (1), BB, HBP), Hamilton (3-4, 2 R, 2 HR, 5 RBI (19), BB, K) Putting the month of May behind them, the Saints chose a good day to opt for a bullpen game with pitching as the bats, more importantly, Spencer Steer, Alex Kirilloff, and catcher Caleb Hamilton, combined for seven home runs to give the Saints a 3-2 record for June. Steer’s first home run of the afternoon came right away as he worked a 2-2 count and then hammered a lead off home run to left field to make it a 1-0 game. Before the inning was over, Tim Beckham hit his second home run, a solo shot, to extend the lead to 2-0. In the top of the second, Hamilton hit his first home run of the afternoon, a two-run shot that scored Michael Helman and gave the Saints a 4-0 lead. Before the inning was over, Steer recorded his only RBI of the afternoon not from a home run. Steer hit a sacrifice groundout that scored John Andreoli to give the Saints a 5-0 lead. On the mound for the first two innings for the Saints was JC Ramirez. Ramirez was in for his 11th appearance, the second start, for the Saints and gave up three runs on three hits and two walks. Ramirez totaled 34 pitches in his 2 innings of work and left with the Saints still in the lead 5-3. The Saints would not score again until the top of the fourth, when Steer hit his second home run of the afternoon, this time to center field, to extend the lead to 6-3. In the bottom of the fifth, the Cubs would bring themselves within a run of tying the game as they scored two off of Tyler Thornburg, who made his first appearance with the Saints for the 2022 season. The two runs Thornburg allowed went unearned and the game was at a 6-5 score going into the top of the sixth. In the top of the sixth, Hamilton hit his second home run of the day, another solo shot, and later in the inning, Kirilloff hit his first of the afternoon, a two-run homer that scored Steer extending the lead to 9-5 over the Cubs. The final home run of the afternoon for Steer came in the top of the eighth with Elliot Soto on base and put the Saints up 12-6 at the time. The third and final home run of the afternoon for Steer was his first ever three home run game of his professional career. Kirilloff’s final homer was in the top of the ninth as he hit another two-run home run that brought home Steer for his fifth run of the game and put the Saints up 16-6. The Saints will return home for a six game series for their first ever match up against the Twins former Triple AAA affiliate, the Rochester Red Wings. First game of the series is Tuesday night with first pitch scheduled for 7:07 p.m. CT. WIND SURGE WISDOM Wichita 5, Frisco 3 Box Score SP: Simeon Woods Richardson - 5 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 7 K HR: Chris Williams (4) Multi-Hit Games: None Wichita completed a six-game homestand with the Frisco RoughRiders Sunday afternoon and pulled away with a series victory in their 5-3 win. Simeon Woods Richardson was on the mound for the Wind Surge Sunday afternoon making his ninth start of the season. The Twins second highest pitching prospect according to Twins Daily recovered from a shortened start against the RoughRiders on Tuesday, a game that ended up being suspended due to inclement weather. Woods Richardson completed five innings for the Wind Surge on Sunday and although he allowed eight base runners on six hits and two walks. Woods Richardson only allowed two runs, both earned, and struck out seven RoughRider batters. Woods Richardson improved his season ERA to an even 3.00 on the season and his strikeout total now stands at 50 in 48 innings. The RoughRiders did get the first two runs of the game in the top of the second and later the top of the third. Being down 2-0 in the bottom of the third, Wichita was able to score their first run thanks to an Anthony Prato sacrifice fly that scored Edouard Julien making it a 2-1 RoughRider lead. The Wind Surge were able to tie the game up in the bottom of the fourth thanks to first baseman Chris Williams fourth home run of the year. With the game still remained tied in the bottom of the sixth at 2-2. Ernie Yake found himself in a 2-2 count with the bases loaded. On the fifth pitch of the at-bat, Yake laced a ball down the right field line for a bases-clearing double that gave the Wind Surge the three runs they needed to complete their 5-3 victory. The Wind Surge begin their next series on the road Tuesday for their second road series against the Arkansas Travelers, the Seattle Mariners Double AA affiliate. First pitch is scheduled for 6:35 p.m. CT KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 9, Lansing 3 Box Score SP: Aaron Rozek 4 IP, 3 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 5 K HR: Christian Encarnacion-Strand (10), Will Holland (4), Kennie Taylor (1), Aaron Sabato (7) Multi-Hit Games: Encarnacion-Strand (3-5, 3 R, 2 2B, HR, RBI (43), 2 K), Sabato (3-5, 2 R, 2B, HR, 3 RBI (32), K), Yunior Severino (2-4, R, BB), Jeferson Morales (2-5, 2B, RBI (18), 2 K), Taylor (2-3, R, HR, 2 RBI (3), BB, K) Cedar Rapids completed their road series in Lansing, Michigan with a banger on Sunday, crushing the Lugnuts in a 9-3 victory. Aaron Rozek was on the mound for the Kernels Sunday afternoon making his seventh start of the season. Rozek completed 4 innings for the Kernels but surrendered three runs on two home runs, a two-run home run from Lugnuts right fielder Lawrence Butler and a solo shot by center fielder Austin Beck. Aside from the home runs, Rozek only allowed two additional base runners on a single and a walk and struck out five batters in his 4 innings of work. The bats came swinging for the Kernels all afternoon. Leading the offense for the Kernels was prospect sensation Christian Encarnacion-Strand as he went 3-5 with three extra base hits including his tenth home run of the season at High-A. Kernels first baseman Aaron Sabato had one of his best games of the season at the plate, he was also 3-5 with a home run and three runs batted in. Having his best game of the season so far was Kernels right fiedler Kennie Taylor, who went 2-3 with his first home run of 2022 and drove in two runs. The Kernels victory over the Lugnuts on Sunday gave them a 4-2 series victory over Lansing and improved them to 33-18 overall on the season. The 33-18 record for the Kernels is the best in the Midwest Western division and only second to the Dayton Dragons, the Reds High-A affiliate, who have a 35-15 record on the season. Next series for the Kernels begins on the road against the South Bend Cubs on Tuesday night with first pitch scheduled for 6:35 p.m. CT. MUSSEL MATTERS Game 1 Fort Myers 5, Tampa 6 Box Score SP: Ariel Jurado 4 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 4 K HR: Emmanuel Rodriguez (9) Multi-Hit games: Rubel Cespedes (2-4, K) The Mighty Mussels played two on Sunday afternoon as the Mussels had a rescheduled rain out game with the Tampa Tarpons from June 3. The first game featured Ariel Jurado on the mound for his first rehab start with the Mussels. Jurado went 4 innings for the Mussels in game one showing signs of strength in his first game of 2022. Jurado allowed only three base runners off of two walks and one hit and struck out four Tarpon hitters without surrendering any runs. Fort Myers was the first to score in this game as it remained scoreless going into the bottom of the fourth inning. That first run came from an Emmanuel Rodriguez solo home run putting the Mighty Mussels up 1-0. The Mussels came up with three more runs their next time at the plate in the bottom of the fifth inning. The first run came from a Nelson Roberto RBI single that scored Mikey Perez, that was followed up with an RBI triple to center field form Jake Rucker scoring Roberto and making the score 3-0 Mussels. Finally, Noah Miller laced a ground-rule double over the left field fence to score Rucker and give the Mussels a 4-0 lead. In the top of the sixth, the Tarpons began to mount their comeback against the Mussels as the Yankees number three overall prospect, Jasson Dominguez, hit a two-run home run for his sixth of the season making it a 4-2 ballgame. The Tarpons then added two more runs in the top of the seventh inning to tie the game up 4-4 and with the Mussels unable to pick up runs of their own in the bottom of the seventh, the game went to extras. The Tarpons completed their comeback as they scored two more runs in the top of the eighth making it a 6-4 game in their favor. Fort Myers responded with a singular run from a Mikey Perez sacrifice fly, but came up short in game one of the doubleheader losing 6-5. Game 2 Fort Myers 7, Tampa 1 Box Score SP: Pierson Ohl 3 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 9 K HR: None Multi hit Games: Mikey Perez (2-3, R, 2 2B, 3 RBI (26), SB (20)), Luis Baez (2-3, 2 R, SB (6)) Fort Myers recovered in the second game of the doubleheader against the Tampa Tarpons as the bats came out the gate swinging in the bottom of the first. The Mighty Mussels put up five runs in the bottom of the first off of a walk, an error and four hits, the biggest hit coming from Mikey Perez’s RBI double that scored two. Perez wasn’t done performing when he had his second at-bat in the bottom of the second as he had another RBI double that only scored one but gave the Mighty Mussels a 6-0 lead. On the mound for the start for Fort Myers was Pierson Ohl. Ohl was making his eighth start for the Mighty Mussels and even though it was shortened, it was one of his most impressive yet as Ohl recorded all nine of his outs via strikeout while allowing five baserunners. Following an explosive first two innings of runs, the Mighty Mussels only scored one more insurance run in the bottom of the sixth thanks to a Jake Rucker single. Juan Mendez closed out the game in the top of the seventh for the Mussels to give them their 7-1 victory and a split doubleheader. The Mighty Mussels travel to Daytona Beach Tuesday for a six game series against the Reds Low-A affiliate the Daytona Tortugas with first pitch scheduled for 6:05 p.m. CT. TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS OF THE DAY Pitcher of the Day – Simeon Woods Richardson (Wichita) - 5 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 7 K Hitter of the Day – Spencer Steer (St. Paul) - 3-4, 5 R, 3 HR (6), 5 RBI (15), BB, HBP PROSPECT SUMMARY We will again keep tabs on the Twins top prospects. You’ll probably read about them in the team sections, but if they aren’t there, you’ll see how they did here. Here’s a look at how the current Twins Daily Top 20 performed: #2 - Austin Martin (Wichita) - 0-3, BB #3 - Jose Miranda (Minnesota) - 2-5, RBI #5 - Simeon Woods Richardson (Wichita) - 5 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 7 K #7 - Spencer Steer (St. Paul) - 3-4, 5 R, 3 HR (6), 5 RBI (15), BB, HBP #8 - Emmanuel Rodriguez (Ft. Myers) - Game 1: 1-2, R, HR, RBI, 2 BB Game 2: Did not play #9 - Noah Miller (Ft. Myers) - Game 1: 1-3, 2B, RBI, BB Game 2: 0-4, R #15 - Matt Wallner (Wichita) - 1-2, R, SB (6), 2 BB #16 - Edouard Julien (Wichita) - 1-4, R, SB (6) #18 - Christian Encarnacion-Strand (Cedar Rapids) - 3-5, 3 R, 2 2B, HR, RBI (43), 2 K TUESDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS All Twins Minor League Affiliates are off on Monday and will resume their games on Tuesday, June 7. The only Monday in which there will be minor-league games is July 4th (and some for the Saints in September). Rochester @ St. Paul (7:07 PM CST) - TBD Wichita @ Arkansas (6:35 PM CST) - TBD Cedar Rapids @ South Bend (6:05 PM CST) - TBD Fort Myers @ Daytona (6:05 PM CST) - TBD Please feel free to ask questions and discuss Sunday’s games
  3. Transactions: RHP Tyler Thornburg signed by Minnesota and assigned to St. Paul OF Mark Contreras recalled by Minnesota RHP Jharel Cotton selected by Minnesota RHP Chi Chi Gonzalez selected by Minnesota RHP Ian Hamilton selected by Minnesota INF Daniel Ozoria transferred to Wichita INF Rubel Cespedes assigned to Fort Myers SAINTS SENTINEL St. Paul 8, Iowa 7 Box Score With the big league club headed into Canada and needing warm bodies, plenty of roster moves impacted the St. Paul Saints on Friday. Ronny Henriquez drew the start and went 4 1/3 while allowing five runs on ten hits. He struck out five and walked just one. Roy Morales started the scoring for St. Paul in the top half of the 1st inning when his single drove in Jake Cave. After Iowa tied it in the 2nd inning, St. Paul jumped back up in the 3rd inning. Solo shots by Elliot Soto and Alex Kirilloff made it a 3-1 score. Iowa drew back within one during the bottom of the 3rd inning, but Michael Helman answered with his first Triple-A home run, a two-run blast scoring Cole Sturgeon, in the 4th inning to push the lead up to three. In the 5th inning Kirilloff contributed again, this time with a double plating Soto and making it a 6-3 game. After Iowa scored in both the 5th and 6th innings to take the lead 7-6, St. Paul rallied. Morales ripped a double in the 9th inning to score Kirilloff and push things to extras. In the 10th inning Caleb Hamilton used a fielder’s choice to score Helman. In the bottom half of the frame Sturgeon uncorked a dart to home plate nailing the would-be game-tying run and ending the game. Kirilloff had a three-hit game with a pair of extra-base hits. Morales and Soto both had multi-hit efforts of their own. WIND SURGE WISDOM Frisco 2, Wichita 1 Box Score Wichita turned the ball to Casey Legumina and was rewarded with 5 2/3 innings of strong work. Legumina allowed just two runs on two hits and two walks while striking out seven. The lone damage against him came on a 4th inning big fly. Playing a tight contest the night before, Wichita looked for more run support in this one. DaShawn Keirsey Jr. roped his 10th double in the bottom of the 2nd inning to score Matt Wallner. That got the Wind Surge on the board, but that’s where the run production would end. After winning a game 2-1 on Thursday, they dropped this contest by the same score. Four hits from the starting lineup wasn’t enough to get it done. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 8, Lansing 5 Box Score David Festa was tonight’s starting pitcher for the Kernels and he continued to turn in strong outings. Working five innings, Festa gave up just two runs on five hits and two walks while striking out five. His ERA at High-A now sits at 2.63 on the year. Lansing jumped out to a 1-0 lead after the first inning, but that was erased by Aaron Sabato in the 3rd inning. A single to right field scored Anthony Prato and Christian Encarnacion-Strand giving Cedar Rapids the lead. Things were knotted once again by the end of the inning, but the Kernels jumped back out ahead in the 5th inning. Prato singled to right pushing Charles Mack across the plate, and then Prato was able to score later after stealing third and scoring on a throwing error. The Lugnuts continued to charge back, coming within one in the 7th inning, but Cedar Rapids again had an answer. Mack singled to score Jeferson Morales before Prato ripped his 5th triple to plate Will Holland and Mack. A wild pitch then allowed Prato yet another opportunity to cross the plate. Lansing tired to make a comeback, but the hole was too deep and the 9th inning rally ended with just two runs being made up. Sabato had a strong three-hit evening while Prato, Mack, and Wander Javier all contributed two hits apiece. MUSSEL MATTERS The Mighty Mussels and Tarpons were postponed on Friday due to inclement weather. They square off again on Saturday evening. TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS OF THE DAY Pitcher of the Day – Casey Legumina (Wichita) - 5.2 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 7 K Hitter of the Day – Anthony Prato (Cedar Rapids) - 2-4, 3 R, 3 RBI, BB, 3B PROSPECT SUMMARY We will again keep tabs on the Twins top prospects. You’ll probably read about them in the team sections, but if they aren’t there, you’ll see how they did here. Here’s a look at how the current Twins Daily Top 20 performed: #1 - Royce Lewis (Minnesota) - Injured List #2 - Austin Martin (Wichita) - 1-4, K #3 - Jose Miranda (Minnesota) - Did Not Play #4 - Jordan Balazovic (St. Paul) - Did Not Pitch #5 - Simeon Woods Richardson (Wichita) - Did Not Pitch #6 - Matt Canterino (Wichita) - Did Not Pitch #7 - Spencer Steer (St. Paul) - 0-6, 3 K #8 - Emmanuel Rodriguez (Ft. Myers) - Postponed #9 - Noah Miller (Ft. Myers) - Postponed #10 - Marco Raya (Ft. Myers) - Did Not Pitch #11 - Cade Povich (Cedar Rapids) - Did Not Pitch #12 - Louie Varland (Wichita) - Did Not Pitch #13 - Ronny Hendriquez (St. Paul) - 4.1 IP, 10 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 1 BB, 5 K #14 - Blayne Enlow (Wichita) - Did Not Pitch #15 - Matt Wallner (Wichita) - 1-4, R, 2B #16 - Edouard Julien (Wichita) - 0-4, 2 K #17 - Cole Sands (St. Paul) - Did Not Pitch #18 - Christian Encarnacion-Strand (Cedar Rapids) - 2-5, R, 2 K, 2 B #19 - Steve Hajjar (Ft. Myers) - Did Not Pitch #20 - David Festa (Cedar Rapids) - 5.0 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 5 K SATURDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS St. Paul @ Iowa (6:08PM CST) - RHP Jacob Faria Frisco @ Wichita (6:05PM CST) - RHP Louie Varland Cedar Rapids @ Lansing (6:05PM CST) - RHP Brent Headrick Tampa @ Fort Myers (5:00 PM CST) - TBD Please feel free to ask questions and discuss Friday’s games! It sure is exciting to have all four Twins full-season affiliates back and playing.
  4. TRANSACTIONS OF Willie Joe Garry Jr. placed on IL for A+ Cedar Rapids RHP Yennier Cano optioned to AAA St. Paul LHP Jovani Moran recalled by Minnesota Twins RHP Juan Minaya contract selected by Minnesota Twins INF Tim Beckham assigned to Low-A Fort Myers on minor league rehab Saints Sentinel St. Paul 4, Indianapolis 7 Box Score Ronny Henriquez: 4 2/3 IP, 7 H, 5 ER, 1 BB, 8 K HR: Spencer Steer (2), Jake Cave, (3) Multi-hit games: Mark Contreras (2-for-4) The Saints lost a winnable game on Saturday. Indianapolis jumped all over Ronny Henriquez, scoring five runs before the young starter could complete five innings. Henriquez continues to own great strikeout numbers since joining the Twins organization, but his ERA has yet to follow suit. We shall see which budges first. Spencer Steer continued his assault on baseballs. The high-flying prospect has no desire to stay at AAA and is surprisingly banging on the door of the majors thanks to a .306/.392/.599 slash-line that hints at a rare OBP/power combination oddly reminiscent of Jose Miranda's 2021 season. Of all the prospect risers in the system, few have shot as highly as Steer. Jake Cave also homered, but the total offensive effort was not enough on Saturday. The Saints gave up seven runs but also struck out 15 batters, flashing some punch out upside available in the high minors. Ian Hamilton descended again, lowering his season ERA to 0.84. The soon-to-be 27-year-old has reigned in command issues that plagued him in 2021, walking batters at a passable 9.1% clip while striking them out 36.4% of the time. Wind Surge Wisdom Wichita 13, Corpus Cristi 14 Box Score Casey Legumina: 3 1/3 IP, 7 H, 7 ER, 3 BB, 2 K HR: Leobaldo Cabrera (4), Matt Wallner, (10), Dennis Ortega (2) Multi-hit games: Austin Martin (2-for-6, RBI), Michael Helman (2-for-5, 2 R), DaShawn Kiersey (2-for-4, 2B, 2 R, 2 RBI), Leobaldo Cabrera (2-for-3, HR, 2 R, 4 RBI), Ernie Yake (2-for-5, R, 2 RBI) Wichita lost a heartbreaker on Saturday. A true barn-burner, no lead was safe on Saturday, as both teams traded blows like Muhammad Ali fighting against Joe Frazier; Leobaldo Cabrera was the big winner with his early-game grand slam. Matt Wallner and Dennis Ortega were the other big blasters of the night. It was a tough night for Wind Surge pitchers. Every arm allowed at least two runs, and the team ended up walking more hitters than they struck out, a bad outcome no matter how you slice it. Perhaps something was in the water, or maybe the vibes were off, but Wichita pitchers will undoubtably look to forget their outings on Saturday. Offensively, the 7-9 hitters found an incredible amount of success, with each batter scoring at least two runs and two hits. Usually, the top of the order sets up the middle section, but Saturday proved the opposite, as those bottom hitters wrecked havoc all night long. Kernels Nuggets Cedar Rapids 8, Wisconsin 3 Box Score Brent Headrick: 4 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 3 K HR: Aaron Sabato (6), Alerick Soularie (3) Multi-hit games: Aaron Sabato (2-for-4, HR, R, 3 RBI), Will Holland (2-for-4, 3B, 2 R, 2 RBI) The Kernels won handily on Saturday. Brent Headrick took the mound and had a rather mortal outing. The lefty had previously well-established himself as a breakout arm, but his start here was forgettable, allowing more baserunners than innings pitched while striking just three. David Festa followed with four quality innings of work, including three strikeouts and one earned run allowed. The offense stole the show on Saturday. Will Holland brought home the earliest runs with a bases-clearing little-league homer that brought the game to a 3-0 advantage for the Kernels. Wisconsin eventually knotted the game, but Aaron Sabato gave Cedar Rapids a massive lead thanks to a three-run homer in the 5th. Alerick Soularie homered and brought home a final run with a sacrifice fly. Mussel Matters Fort Myers 9, Bradenton 2 Box Score Jaylen Nowlin: 4 IP, 1 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 9 K HR: Emmanuel Rodriguez (7), Tim Beckham (1) Multi-hit games: Emmanuel Rodriguez (2-for-3, HR, R, RBI, 2 BB), Kala’i Rosario (2-for-4, R, 2 RBI), Luis Baez (2-for-4, R, RBI) Fort Myers won a blowout on Saturday. It was one of those games that could have ended just about as soon as it began. Emmanuel Rodriguez blasted a solo homer in the first inning before the Mighty Mussels put up a five-spot in the following frame. Tim Beckham hit the home run in that inning. Fort Myers scored three more runs in the game, but it hardly mattered. Jaylen Nowlin had the start of the night, striking out nine batters over his four innings of work. Yes, he allowed two runs as well, but acquiring 75% of one’s outs via the strikeout is a far more impressive task. Matt Mullenbach, Juan Mendez, and Niklas Rimmel combined to hold Bradenton scoreless in relief of Nowlin. Although Mendez and Rimmel walked more batters than either pitcher probably cared to, the extra base-runners never came around to score. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Jaylen Nowlin Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Leobaldo Cabrera PROSPECT SUMMARY Here’s a look at how the Twins Daily Top 20 Twins Prospects performed: #1 – Austin Martin (Wichita) - 2-for-6, RBI #2 – Royce Lewis (St. Paul) - 1-for-5, R, 2 K (played LF) #12 – Matt Wallner (Wichita) - 1-for-2, HR, 4 R, RBI, 2 BB, K #15 – Emmanuel Rodriguez (Fort Myers) - 2-for-3, HR, R, RBI, 2 BB #16 – Ronny Henriquez (St. Paul) - 4 2/b IP, 7 H, 5 ER, 1 BB, 8 K #18 – Spencer Steer (St. Paul) - 1-for-3, HR, R, 2 RBI, BB, 2 K SUNDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Indianapolis @ St. Paul (5:07 PM) - RHP Cole Sands Wichita @ Corpus Christi (6:05 PM) - RHP Louie Varland Wisconsin @ Cedar Rapids (2:05 PM) - RHP Sean Mooney Fort Myers @ Bradenton (11:00 AM) - TBD
  5. Transactions: OF Cole Sturgeon promoted from Double-A Wichita to Triple-A St. Paul INF Ernie Yake promoted from Single-A Fort Myers to Triple-A St. Paul OF Jake Cave placed on temporary inactive list (paternity leave) SAINTS SENTINEL St. Paul 6, Iowa 3 Box Score It was Chi Chi Gonzalez making the start tonight for St. Paul and he turned in five innings of three-run ball. Avoiding extra damage while giving up nine hits, Gonzalez walked just one and fanned two. Iowa took an early lead with a run in the third inning, and then they added single tallies in the 4th and 5th innings as well. As the game got late, the Saints came alive. Jermaine Palacios opened the scoring for the good guys in the 7th inning. A ground out to third base scored Mark Contreras and the Saints made their way into the run column. Jose Godoy then singled to drive in Elliot Soto and drew the home team within one. Still trailing by one in the 8th inning, Curtis Terry ripped his 8th double of the season to score Royce Lewis and knot the game at three. With the bases loaded, Soto brought everyone home on his first triple of the season and the 6-3 lead would hold through the final frame. Contreras and Godoy were the lone hitters with multi-hit evenings. Alex Kirilloff may have been playing in his final rehab game, and went 0-for-3 with a strikeout. Daniel Gossett was amazing in relief working three innings of no-hit baseball while punching out four and walking just one. WIND SURGE WISDOM Postponed For the third straight night Wichita saw the matchup with the Varland brothers be postponed. Now set to face off for a doubleheader on Friday, the hope would be that Mother Nature finally cooperates. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 5, Quad Cities 3 Box Score Sean Mooney took the ball to start this one and worked three innings while giving up three unearned runs. He walked and struck out four batters apiece. Recently promoted John Stankiewicz came on in relief and was dominant. Pitching five scoreless, Stankiewicz gave up just a single hit and no walks while striking out seven. Quad Cities plated a first inning run to take the lead, but Cedar Rapids had a quick answer. Seth Gray drove in Christian Encarnacion-Strand with a single and the score was even after one. The Kernels then jumped ahead in the second with Wander Javier scoring on a fielding error. Battling back from a two-run third inning that put the River Bandits back on top, Cedar Rapids plated a pair of their own on an Aaron Sabato ground out and another error. With just a one-run lead after the third inning, Sabato gave the Kernels more breathing room when he blasted a solo shot to left field for his third dinger of the season. Anthony Prato contributed two hits out of the leadoff spot tonight, and he was joined by both Sabato and Gray. MUSSEL MATTERS Fort Myers 7, Lakeland 6 Box Score Fort Myers gave the ball to Travis Adams tonight and he turned in a solid performance allowing just two runs on three hits over five innings. Adams recorded four strikeouts and walked none. The Mighty Mussels scored the first run of the evening on a Noah Cardenas ground out. A throwing error by Lakeland allowed Noah Miller to scamper home. After getting behind in the 2nd inning, Emmanuel Rodriguez ripped a single in the third inning allowing Jake Rucker to score. Stretching the lead further, Keoni Cavaco roped a 4th inning double driving in Kyle Schmidt before Mikey Perez homered in the 6th inning plating Kala’i Rosario on the two-run shot. Lakeland drew back within two on a homer of their own, but Schmidt erased it scoring Rodriguez on a 7th inning sacrifice fly. The game got way too dicey when the Flying Tigers tied things in the 8th inning, and neither team could push across a run in the 9th. Utilizing the runner on second in the 10th inning, Rosario ripped his second double of the season to score Cavaco and give Fort Myers the lead they’d need to hold onto. Fort Myers tallied 11 hits on the evening and Noah Miller accounted for four of them going 4-for-4. Rosario was the only other batter to join him with a multi-hit effort. TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS OF THE DAY Pitcher of the Day – John Stankiewicz (Cedar Rapids) - 5.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 7 K Hitter of the Day – Noah Miller (Fort Myers) - 4-4, R, BB, 2B PROSPECT SUMMARY We will again keep tabs on the Twins top prospects. You’ll probably read about them in the team sections, but if they aren’t there, you’ll see how they did here. Here’s a look at how the current Twins Daily Top 20 performed: #2 - Royce Lewis (St. Paul) - 1-3, R, BB, K #3 - Jose Miranda (Minnesotal) - 1-3, K #7 - Jhoan Duran (Minnesota) - 0.2 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 0 BB, 0 K #10 - Noah Miller (Ft. Myers) - 4-4, R, BB, 2B #15 - Emmanuel Rodriguez (Ft. Myers) - 1-2, R, RBI, 3 BB FRIDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Iowa @ St. Paul (6:37PM CST) - RHP Jacob Faria Tulsa @ Wichita (5:05PM CST) Game 2 TBD - RHP Louie Varland/RHP Matt Canterino Quad Cities @ Cedar Rapids (6:35PM CST) - RHP Aaron Rozek Fort Myers @ Lakeland (5:30PM CST) - RHP Pierson Ohl Please feel free to ask questions and discuss Thursday’s games! It sure is exciting to have all four Twins full-season affiliates back and playing.
  6. TRANSACTIONS The Twins announced Sunday morning that pitchers Sonny Gray and Jordan Balazovic were assigned to Low-A affiliate Fort Myers for rehab assignments and are available to pitch Sunday. In addition, Marco Raya was activated by Ft. Myers. he is scheduled to start on Tuesday. SAINTS SENTINEL St. Paul and Nashville were postponed due to Weather. The Saints were unable to play their series finale against the Nashville Sounds on Sunday due to wet grounds at CHS Field. The makeup game has yet to be rescheduled for a later date. WIND SURGE WISDOM Wichita 4, Arkansas 3 Box Score SP: Chris Vallimont - 4 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 4 BB, 4 K HR: Cole Sturgeon (3), Alex Isola (3) Multi-hit games: Isola (3-4, R, 2B, HR, 2 RBI) The Wind Surge completed their series victory over the Travelers Sunday afternoon in a 4-3 victory that gave the Wind Surge a 5-1 series win. Chris Vallimont was on the mound for his fifth start of the season for the Wind Surge. Vallimont had a strong first inning but struggled in the second and third giving up two runs in the second on a bases-clearing double by Travelers catcher Jake Anchia. Vallimont allowed the Travelers third and final run to score on a wild pitch in the bottom of the third. Vallimont cooled off in the fourth inning but was taken out for the day afterward. Alex Isola carried the Wind Surge lineup to victory with his 3-for-4 performance at the plate coming a triple short of the cycle. Isola also hit the game-winning home run in the top of the sixth that gave the Wind Surge their 4-3 lead. Cole Sturgeon hit his third home run of the season in the fifth inning against Travelers starter George Kirby. The Wind Surge will be returning home for their next series starting Tuesday against the Tulsa Drillers. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 6, Beloit 13 Box Score SP: Cade Povich 4.1 IP, 8 H, 6 ER, 2 BB, 6 K HR: Aaron Sabato (2), Jeferson Morales (1) Multi-hit games: Anthony Prato (2-3, R, 2B, RBI (14) 2 BB), Jair Camargo (2-4, R, BB, K) The Kernels completed their final game against the Beloit Sky Carp with a loss that split the six-game series between the two teams. The 13-6 loss is the largest for the Kernels on the season so far. Kernels starter Cade Povich made his third start of the season but was roughed up over 4 1/3 innings pitched. The Sky Carp scored three runs against him in the second and three more to knock him out in the fifth inning. Povich still did have three strong innings. throwing scoreless first, third, and fourth innings. The Kernels offense did their best to keep up but fell short in the later innings as the Sky Carp tagged on three insurance runs in the bottom of the seventh and four more in the bottom of the eighth. Kernels left fielder Anthony Prato and catcher Jair Camargo both had strong games at the plate, but it was first baseman Aaron Sabato’s two-run homer in the top of the ninth that brought the Kernels back into the game. Even though they fell short and lost 13-6 The Kernels will be returning home for their next series against the Quad City River Bandits which will be their second series against them for the season. MUSSEL MATTERS Fort Myers 4, Clearwater 4: Suspended in the top of the 11th Box Score SP: Sonny Gray 3 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 K HR: None Multi hit games: Noah Miller (2-3, R, BB), Kyler Fedko (2-4, R, RBI (14), BB, K) The Mighty Mussels game against the Clearwater Threshers was suspended in the top of the 11th due to rain. The suspended game will resume during the Mighty Mussels next match up against the Threshers the week of May 16. Both Sonny Gray and Jordan Balazovic pitched for the Mighty Mussels during Sunday’s game. Gray made his rehab start and nearly three perfect innings for Fort Myers save for a fielding error in the top of the first and a single in the top of the second. Gray did not allow any walks and struck out five in his appearance. Balazovic came into the game right after Gray for two innings. Balazovic did not have as strong a performance as Gray as he gave up four runs on four hits and two walks in his first appearance for the 2022 season. He has been rehabbing a knee injury. The Mussels will begin their next series on Tuesday night at home against the Cardinals Single-A affiliate, the Palm Beach Cardinals. TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS OF THE DAY Pitcher of the Day – Sonny Gray (Fort Myers) - 3 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 K Hitter of the Day – Alex Isola (Wichita) - 3-4, R, 2B, HR, 2 RBI PROSPECT SUMMARY We will again keep tabs on the Twins top prospects. You’ll probably read about them in the team sections, but if they aren’t there, you’ll see how they did here. #2 - Austin Martin (Wichita) - 1-2, R, 2B, K #5 - Jordan Balazovic (Fort Myers, Rehab) - 2 IP 4 H, 4 ER, 2 BB, K #7 - Josh Winder (Minnesota) - 6 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 7 K (1st career MLB Win) #11 - Noah Miller (Ft. Myers) - 2-3, R, BB #13 - Cole Sands (Minnesota) - 2 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 2 K #16 - Spencer Steer (Wichita) - 0-3, R, BB #17 - Cade Povich (Cedar Rapids) - 4.1 IP, 8 H, 6 ER, 2 BB, 6 K #18 - Christian Encarnacion-Strand (Cedar Rapids) - 0-3, RBI (24), BB, K #19 - Edouard Julien (Wichita) - 1-4, 2B, 2 K TUESDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS All Twins Minor League Affiliates are off on Monday and will resume their games on Tuesday, May 3. The only Monday in which there will be minor-league games is July 4th (and some for the Saints in September). Iowa @ St. Paul (6:37 PM CST) - TBD Tulsa @ Wichita (7:05 PM CST) - TBD Quad Cities @ Cedar Rapids (6:35 PM CST) - TBD Fort Myers @ Lakeland (5:30 PM CST) - RHP Marco Raya Please feel free to ask questions and discuss Sunday’s games as the second weekend of the Minor and Major League seasons has concluded.
  7. For draft lovers, this week is going to be a focus on just a couple pieces of information that came out since our last update. Last Friday, Baseball America published their second mock draft of the spring. If you recall (or to save you from checking), they mocked the Twins selecting James Madison outfielder Chase DeLauter in their first version. DeLauter really struggled in the season’s first series against good competition, though he has seemed to right the ship (against lesser competition). He has dropped in the newest projection. Version 2.0 now has the Twins selecting Jacob Berry, a corner infielder from LSU. That would be an excellent value pick, considering he’s viewed as one of the top two college hitters in the draft (along with Cal Poly’s Brooks Lee). The current regime has placed an emphasis on college bats, so a potential Berry pick - which may frustrate some - would fall in line with what we’ve seen with picks like Aaron Sabato and Trevor Larnach. Speaking of Brooks Lee… Keith Law posted some scouting notes earlier this week at The Athletic. He really likes the aforementioned Lee, calling him “one of the safest bets at the top of the draft this year” though he offers the caveat that Lee doesn’t “offer the upside of the high school players in that same echelon.” Law also writes about Kevin Parada of Georgia Tech. Parada has gotten plenty of pub at Twins Daily in the last month and Law sees him as a “top 10 (pick) if the draft were held today, with a chance to get into the top five.” Jumping into my Top 10 this week are two new names: Jackson Holliday, a prep SS from Oklahoma who’s committed to Oklahoma State. He’s the son of Matt Holliday, the hitting coach at Oklahoma State, under head coach Robin Ventura. Daniel Susac, a catcher from Arizona. Jamie Cameron did a great job introducing him in his college baseball notebook earlier this week. Jeremy's Top 10 MLB Draft Prospects 1.) Druw Jones, OF, Georgia prep (Vanderbilt commit) 2.) Termarr Johnson, 2B, Georgia prep 3.) Elijah Green, OF, Florida prep (Miami commit) (Baseball America breaks down his game.) 4.) Brooks Lee, SS, Cal Poly 5.) Dylan Lesko, SP, Georgia prep (Vanderbilt commit) (Baseball America breaks down his game.) (previously: 7) 6.) Jacob Berry, 3B, LSU (previously: 5) 7.) Kevin Parada, C, Georgia Tech (previously: 8.) Jace Jung, 3B, Texas Tech (previously: 6) 9.) Andrew Susac, C, Arizona (previously unranked) 10.) Jackson Holliday, SS, Oklahoma prep (Oklahoma State commit) OUT: Chase DeLauter, cOF, James Madison (previously: 9); Robert Moore, 2B, Arkansas (previously: 10) MOCK DRAFTS / PROSPECT BOARDS Baseball America - v2.0 (4/1/22) / v1.0 (2/10/22) / Top 200 (3/14/22) MLB.com - Callis - Top 10 (12/15/21), Mayo - Top 20 (7/20/21) / Top 100 The Athletic - Law Top 30 (3/10/22) ESPN - Early Draft Rankings (7/26/21) ($$$ - ESPN+) / McDaniel’s Draft Rankings (2/24/22) Fangraphs - The Board / 2022 MLB Draft Rankings and Offseason List Primer (11/30/21) Just Baseball v1.0 (2/10/22) My MLB Draft (1/18/22) Prospects Live v1.0 (1/4/22)
  8. In 2021, the Cedar Rapids Kernels found their way back to the playoffs as they have each season since the Twins have been their big-league club in 2013. Brian Dinkelman returns for his fourth season as the Kernels manager, and several of his players return to the roster from last year. That said, there are some exciting prospects in this group at each position. The lineup should be strong, and the pitching staff could be really good. Here we will introduce you to the 2022 Cedar Rapids Kernels Opening Day roster with a tweet-length bio. For much more on each player, click the hyperlink with the name and see all of the Twins Daily stories in which each player is tagged. There are some terrific prospects on this roster, and there are some great stories as well. COACHING STAFF Manager: Brian Dinkelman Hitting Coach: Jairo Rodriguez, Shawn Schlechter Pitching Coaches: Mark Moriarity, Richard Salazar PITCHERS Melvi Acosta (26) - Veteran right-hander has worked a lot as both a starter and a relief pitcher. Likely fulfills that same role, eating innings. Split 2021 between Kernels and Wind Surge. Denny Bentley (23) - 33rd round pick in 2018, Bentley broke out with a strong showing in Ft. Myers in 2021. Had 68 strikeouts in 44 1/3 innings. He had nine saves but often worked more than one inning. Andrew Cabezas (25) - Twins 18th round pick in 2018 from Miami, Cabezas spent 2021 with the Kernels working mostly as a long-reliever. Went 4-1 with a 3.57 ERA and had 82 strikeouts in 70 2/3 innings. Osiris German (23) - signed back in 2016 out of the Dominican Republic, German impressed with the Mighty Mussels in 2021. He had 49 strikeouts in 31 2/3 innings. He moved up to Cedar Rapids, struggled a bit, but also struck out 41 batters in 27 2/3 innings. Great changeup. Sawyer Gipson-Long (24) - Started 2021 slow, but after 14 starts in Ft. Myers and six starts in Cedar Rapids, the 2019 sixth-round pick had 134 strikeouts in 97 innings. Big, strong righty with a strong pitch mix. Bradley Hanner (23) - Hard-thrower, the 21st round pick from 2019 posted a 7.13 ERA in Ft. Myers last year. Had 49 strikeouts, but 34 walks, in 41 2/3 innings. Brent Headrick (24) - Ninth round pick in 2019, he made 14 starts in Ft. Myers in 2021 and posted a 3.82 ERA. The lefty had 86 strikeouts and 33 walks in 61 1/3 innings. Missed some time with a shoulder issue. Cody Laweryson (23) - Twins 14th round pick in 2019, he joined the Kernels last season and struck out 73 batters, with just 19 walks, in 58 2/3 innings. The Maine native pitched in the Arizona Fall League after the season and participated in the Fall Stars game. Casey Legumina (24) - He was the Twins eighth-round pick in 2019 after having Tommy John surgery early in the 2019 college season. He made his pro debut in 2021. He went 4-2 with a 3.02 ERA in 14 games (8 starts) with the Mighty Mussels. 56 strikeouts, and 14 walks) in 44 2/3 innings. Made one start for Kernels at the end of the season. Definitely, he is one to watch. Bobby Milacki (25) - After being drafted by the Nationals, the Twins signed Milacki in 2021 out of independent ball. For Ft. Myers, he posted a 3.86 ERA in 42 innings. He throws mid-90s fastballs and struck out a batter per inning while walking just seven. Derek Molina (24) - 14th round pick in 2017 out of Merced College where he played shortstop and pitched out of the bullpen. A great athlete, he went 7-1 with a 4.65 ERA last year with the Kernels, but he had 81 strikeouts in 62 innings. Sean Mooney - Twins 12th round pick in 2019, he also had Tommy John surgery that year, so he spent 2020 rehabbing. They were cautious with his innings last year, but with Ft. Myers, he posted a 1.24 ERA and in 29 innings, he struck out 52 batters. He then made three starts in Cedar Rapids and struck out 19 batters in 13 innings. Matt Mullenbach (25) - The Twins signed Mullenbach out of the independent Frontier League early last year. He jumped all over, pitching nine games in the FCL, seven games with the Mighty Mussels, and even one game at Triple-A St. Paul. Jon Olsen (24) - The Twins selected him from UCLA in the 12th round in 2018. He also had Tommy John surgery early that year. He’s had some other surgeries since, and in 2021, he finally was able to make his pro debut. In 16 games with the Kernels (13 starts), he posted a 4.03 ERA in 67 innings. Tyler Palm (27) - signed out of the USPBL in 2018, the 6-9 Palm spent the 2021 season in the Kernels bullpen after making 17 starts for them in 2019. Cade Povich (21) - Povich was the Twins' 3rd round pick in 2021 from Nebraska. Not a Twins Daily top 20 prospects, he ranks 12th in my personal rankings. In three games with the Mussels last year, he gave up one earned run in eight innings. He walked two and struck out 16 batters. The southpaw impressed at Instructs, touching 97 at times, and he’s got a good slider and changeup too. Miguel Rodriguez (23) - signed from Venezuela in 2017, he spent a year each in the DSL and GCL before missing the 2020 season. Last year in Ft. Myers, he went 3-5 with a 4.50 ERA. In 52 innings, he struck out 58 batters but also walked 26. Aaron Rozek (26) - Burnsville native went to Minnesota State, Mankato, and has bounced around independent leagues in recent years. The Twins signed him early in the year, and he pitched in the FCL, for Ft. Myers, for Cedar Rapids, and even made a start in Wichita. He doesn’t throw hard, but he can mix things up and eat a lot of innings. CATCHERS Jair Camargo (22) - Colombia native spent the 2021 season with the Kernels, often hitting in the cleanup spot. In 71 games, he hit .236/.279/.418 (697) with seven doubles and 13 homers. Charles Mack (22) - Twins sixth-round pick in 2018 out of high school in western New York, he has moved up one level each year. During the lost 2020 season, he was transitioning to being a catcher. Last year with the Mighty Mussels, he hit .229/.370/.368 (.738) with seven doubles and seven home runs. His defense also came along nicely. Jeferson Morales (22) - Morales signed with the Twins in 2016 out of Venezuela. He began 2021 with 71 games in Ft. Myers where he hit .237/.377/.407 (.784) with 19 doubles and seven homers. In 25 games with the Kernels, he hit .301/.350/.516 (.866) with five doubles and five homers. Will also play in the outfield. INFIELDERS Christian Encarnacion-Strand (22) - Twins 4th round pick last year from Oklahoma State where he learned from Robin Ventura and Matt Holliday. He hit in 21 of 22 games with the Mussels after signing. He hit .391/.424/.598 (1.022) with two doubles, two triples, and four homers. Can play both corner infield spots. Seth Gray (23) - 4th round pick in 2019 from Wright State, Gray hit .212/.321/.333 (.655) with 13 doubles and 11 home runs in 113 games with the Kernels last year. Has played both corner infield positions. Will Holland (23) - Twins 5th round pick in 2019 from Auburn, he is one of the fastest players in the organization. He hit .214/.336/.401 (.736) with 15 doubles and 10 home runs in 76 games with Ft. Myers last year. He also stole 19 bases. Has played both shortstop and second base, as well as center field. Wander Javier (23) - Big year for Javier who will become a free agent at the end of the year if not added to the 40-man roster. He is a plus-defensive shortstop, but in 96 games with the Kernels last year, he hit .225/.280/.413 (.693) with 15 doubles, ten triples, and 12 home runs last year. Anthony Prato (23) - 7th rounder in 2019, he started last season with 28 games in Ft. Myers. After missing over two months with a broken hamate, he moved up to Cedar Rapids and finished the season with 14 games. Posted a .774 OPS with the Kernels. Aaron Sabato (22) - The Twins drafted the burly first baseman with the 27th overall pick in 2020. He began his career by hitting .189/.365/.357 (.722) over 85 games in Ft. Myers. He did have 15 doubles and 11 homers. But after a few good games, he moved up to Cedar Rapids where, in 22 games, he hit .253/.402/.613 (1.015) with three doubles and eight homers. Yunior Severino (22) - Severino joined the Twins organization after the 2017 season. In 2021, he played 63 games in Ft. Myers and hit .245/.347/.393 (.740) with 17 doubles and five homers. In 35 games with the Kernels, he hit .321/.414/.493 (.907) with 12 doubles and three homers. OUTFIELDERS Willie Joe Garry, Jr. (21) - Twins ninth-round pick in 2018 out of high school, Garry spent 2021 with the Mighty Mussels. In 95 games, he hit .197/.298/.303 (.601) with seven doubles, six triples, and four homers. He also stole 24 bases. A strong defensive outfielder, Garry is a great athlete with a ton of talent. He just needs to keep playing. Alerick Soularie (22) - Soularie was the Twins 2nd round pick in 2020 out of Tennessee where he hit .336/.448/.586 (1.034) with 14 doubles and 16 homers in 76 games over two seasons. Last spring, he had all kinds of foot problems. He ended the season with 28 games in Ft. Myers and hit .219/.344/.324 (.668) with three doubles and two homers. He stole nine bags. Can play second base as well. Kennie Taylor (25) - He was the 14th round pick of the Mets in 2019 from Duke. In 2021, he played in the Mariners system last year, mostly at High-A, but 13 games in Triple-A. He signed with the Twins before spring training. Overall last year, he hit .277/.350/.400 (.750) with 10 doubles and four homers. A few themes appear on this roster. First, the Twins aren’t afraid to draft pitchers who have had Tommy John surgery. Second, they certainly like strikeouts from their pitchers and this staff can rack them up. As for position players, there are a lot of players who can play multiple positions. Also, you can see that What are your thoughts on this roster? Who will move up quickly? Who will jump up the prospect rankings?
  9. Projected Starter: Gary Sánchez Likely Backup: Miguel Sanó Depth: Luis Arraez, Brent Rooker Prospects: Aaron Sabato, Christian Encarnacion-Strand THE GOOD A few weeks ago, I figured the team's plan was to have Mitch Garver split time between catcher and designated hitter, with Ryan Jeffers getting primary reps behind the plate and other players rotating through the DH spot when Garver caught or sat. That's the kind of flexibility you gain from losing a fixture in Nelson Cruz. The scenario I envisioned has since been flipped upside down by a flurry of disruptive moves, and as the sum result, Gary Sánchez will essentially be filling the same role I saw for Garver. He'll have the smaller end of a catching timeshare, with plenty of time at DH to maximize the impact of his powerful right-handed bat. Although Sánchez has been worse than Garver of late, his overall track record is much more impressive: Rookie of the Year runner-up in 2016, two-time All-Star, owner of an .804 career OPS and 138 home runs by age 29. We've got Sánchez pegged as the starter at DH because he seems lined up for the most time there early on, but things are fluid at this position by design. Rocco Baldelli can play match-ups and maximize his best bats by taking advantage of the open reins. Plenty of candidates will be vying for opportunities. Miguel Sanó should see a good amount of time at DH, since the Twins seem to (justifiably) much prefer Alex Kirilloff's defense at first base. Luis Arraez lacks a firm starting position, so DH is an easy way to get his bat into the lineup against righties. (I wouldn't be surprised to see him there on Opening Day, even against a lefty.) Those three alone should be able to account for a bulk of the ABs in April. From there, the Twins can keep an open mind. Brent Rooker, the former first-round pick with an .874 OPS in the minors, could be a factor. Aaron Sabato, a more recent first-rounder coming off a roller-coaster pro debut, may not be far behind if his emergence at Cedar Rapids was legit. Christian Encarnacion-Strand is very intriguing to me – the 2021 fourth-rounder mashed to a 1.022 OPS in pitcher-friendly Ft. Myers last summer after starring for Oklahoma State. Like Sabato, he's 22. Plenty of potential bats in the pipeline. But the real dark horse here is José Miranda. I don't have him listed among the prospects or depth at this position because he's got enough glove to not be considered a long-term DH candidate, but Miranda's bat may force the issue. If he's raking in St. Paul while the various timeshare partners aren't inspiring for the Twins, the reigning Minor League Player of the Year is a mere shuttle away. A nice little ace in the hole. THE BAD Most of Minnesota's future DH impact is entirely theoretical, representing a stark change from the very reliable and material impact of Cruz. Sánchez is a nice piece there if he's mashing like he did early in his career. But between 2020 and '21 he slashed .187/.291/.406. Yeesh. Arraez, for as much as we all love him, was not a great offensive player last year. His punchless .294 average and .357 OBP yielded a 105 OPS+, meaning he was 5% better than average. You need more from a designated hitter. With Garver gone, Sanó is probably the most dependable impact bat the Twins can use at DH. For all the grief he gets, he was second on the team in home runs and RBIs last year, and he's only posted a below-average OPS once in seven seasons. I think I lost everyone when I used "Sanó" and "dependable" in the same sentence so I'll just move onto the next paragraph. It would be awesome to see Rooker grab the job and take hold of it. This is his moment. He's 27 and the raw power is special. His defensive shortcomings suggest that any major-league future will be at DH. Unfortunately, the Twins basically gave him everyday playing time after trading Cruz last year and Rooker did little to impress, slashing .219/.317/.425 with a 57-to-14 K/BB rate in 183 plate appearances. He's got an uphill battle for anything resembling regular tread. He might not even make it to Opening Day on the 40-man roster. Miranda, as amazing as he looked in the high minors last year, remains a theoretical big-league asset in his own right. Sabato and Encarnacion-Strand even more so. THE BOTTOM LINE The Twins face an uncertain future at designated hitter after parting ways with one of the best to ever do it. Expect to see plenty of Sánchez, Sanó and Arraez early on, with an open-ended roadmap after that. Catch Up on the Rest of Our 2022 Previews: Position Analysis: Catcher Position Analysis: First Base Position Analysis: Second Base Position Analysis: Third Base Position Analysis: Shortstop Position Analysis: Left Field Position Analysis: Center Field Position Analysis: Right Field
  10. On Saturday, the Twins sent four of their hitting prospects to minor-league camp. Royce Lewis was optioned to Triple-A St. Paul. In addition, Austin Martin, Aaron Sabato and Spencer Steer were reassigned to minor-league camp. In case you were wondering, the distinction is that Lewis is on the 40-man roster, so this is his first option year. The others are not on the 40-man roster so they don't need to be optioned yet. For Lewis, it's been a good chance to just get back on the field again. As has been greatly documented, he was at the Twins alternate site in St. Paul in the 2020 pandemic-lost season. Last year, he arrived at spring training only to learn that he had a torn ACL and missed the full season. He played in four spring games at went 1-for-8 with a stolen base. He also did a nice job at shortstop. While Lewis was technically optioned to St. Paul, that does not necessarily mean that he will start the season with the Saints. It could still be determined that he begin the season in Double-A Wichita. Either way, it is good to see Lewis back on the field and on the path upward. Martin played in five games for the Twins this spring. He went 3-for-9 with a home run. He walked twice and struck out five times. It will be interesting to see where the Twins assign Martin. He spent his pro debut at the Double-A level. Could he get another month or two there before jumping up to St. Paul? Spencer Steer went 0-for-5 in his limited spring appearances, but it is clear that the organization really likes the versatile slugger. He should begin the 2022 season where he ended 2021, with the Wind Surge in Wichita. Aaron Sabato played in six spring games and went 0-for-9 with six strikeouts. He is likely to begin the 2022 season with the Cedar Rapids Kernels where he finished 2021 with 22 games. The Twins spring roster now consists of 49 players. There are 24 pitchers (7 non-roster), five catchers (2 non-roster), 11 infielders (4 non-roster), and nine outfielders (3 non-roster). With the season less than two weeks away, the team will need to make several more transactions to get down to the 28-man Opening Day roster.
  11. Scouts and front office personnel use a 20-80 scale to evaluate a player’s tools. This ranking system is also used to project how those tools will improve as the player continues to develop. Below you will see the top five Twins prospects regarding current and future power potential. 5. Keoni Cavaco, SS Current Power/Future Power: 55/60 Cavaco’s power hasn’t fully shown up in-game action, but scouting reports have his raw power having some of the best potential in the system. Last season at Low-A, he posted a .598 OPS, which was 128 points higher than his professional debut. Cavaco added muscle to his frame during the canceled 2020 season, but that hasn’t shown up in-game action. Now he needs to prove he can make consistent contact to showcase his power on a more regular basis. He will be entering his age-21 season this year, and his stock has fallen in relation to prospect rankings. His power might make him a candidate to bounce back in 2022. 4. Jose Miranda, 3B Current Power/Future Power: 55/55 Miranda is coming off one of the best offensive seasons in Twins history, and he is on the verge of breaking into the big leagues. Minnesota’s front office has been touting Miranda’s potential for multiple offseasons, and he was finally able to put it all together in 2021. Between Double- and Triple-A, he hit 32 doubles and 30 home runs on his way to being named the Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Year. He’s proven his power potential in the upper minors, and he needs to prove that he can transition that power to the big-league level. His 2021 campaign clearly puts him in the team’s long-term plans. 3. Royce Lewis, SS/OF Current Power/Future Power: 60/70 Like Cavaco, Lewis has seen his stock drop over the last two years, but that’s directly related to the fact that he hasn’t been on the field. One of the reasons for optimism surrounding his power potential is the amount of time he has been able to add weight to his already athletic frame. When the Twins drafted him, he weighed 185 pounds, but now he has added at least 30 pounds to his 6-foot-1 frame. There are many questions about what version of Lewis will be on the field this season, especially with his previous swing concerns. 2. Aaron Sabato, 1B/DH Current Power/Future Power: 60/60 Sabato was an intriguing choice by the Twins when they took him in the first round of the 2020 MLB Draft. He crushed the ball in college with a 1.158 OPS in 85 games. A player with his skillset needs to see that power transition to his professional career because he adds minimal defensive value. Last season at Low-A, he struggled to make consistent contact as he struck out 117 times in 85 games. However, he improved as the season progressed and played his final 22 games at High-A. Overall, he hit .253/.402/.613 (1.105) with eight home runs after the promotion. In 2022, he needs to prove that his power surge wasn’t a mirage. 1. Matt Wallner, OF Current Power/Future Power: 70/70 Scouts considered Wallner’s power some of the best in the 2019 draft class, and he has proven his power potential throughout his professional career. He posted an .854 OPS at High-A last season, but he missed time with a broken hamate. After the season, Minnesota sent him to the AFL, and he compiled a 1.011 OPS. There are still questions about Wallner’s future defensive position, but his bat has enough power to make him a dangerous option no matter where he is on the field. He struck out 100 times in 66 games last season, so his strikeout rate will be something to watch as he continues to move up the organizational ladder. Who do you think has the best power in the Twins system? Should someone else make the list? Leave a COMMENT and start the discussion. MORE FROM TWINS DAILY — Latest Twins coverage from our writers — Recent Twins discussion in our forums — Follow Twins Daily via Twitter, Facebook or email
  12. Several players had to switch their lockers from the minor league clubhouse to the clubhouse at Hammond Stadium. That is certainly not a 'normal' thing to happen. Normally big league camp starts several weeks before minor league spring training begin, but due to the lockout things are different. Twelve of the 18 non-roster invites have spent time in the big leagues previously. Here is a look at the players invited to camp. Pitchers LHP Danny Coulombe LHP Devin Smeltzer RHP Jake Faria RHP Ian Hamilton RHP Trevor Megill RHP Juan Minaya Catchers David Banuelos Caleb Hamilton Infielders Tim Beckham Austin Martin Jermaine Palacios Daniel Robertson Aaron Sabato Spencer Steer Curtis Terry Outfielder Jake Cave Derek Fisher Kyle Garlick There are a lot of familiar names among these players. With so many free agents remaining still, it is very possible that the Twins add players to this list. This means 58 players are in Twins major-league spring training. The depth will be helpful, especially once games start, but also remember that the Twins will be able to bring more players from minor-league camp to play in spring games too. Maeda Arrives Sunday was mandatory report day for spring training. Among those reporting was Kenta Maeda who told media that things are going fine in his rehab, but he isn't ready to say when he will be able to return. Feel free to discuss the non-roster invites. Which of them do you think have a legitimate opportunity to make the Twins Opening Day roster? Leave your Comments below.
  13. Looking beyond the top 20 illustrates the depth of the organization. These Twins Daily rankings are comprised of the votes of 11 Twins Daily writers who covered the Twins farm system in 2021. The voters followed the system nearly daily over the past season. Many watched a lot of video. Some attended some games at the Twins affiliates. In 2019, Luis Arraez and Jordan Balazovic appeared in this list. Two years ago, names such as Randy Dobnak, LaMonte Wade, Jorge Alcala, Bailey Ober were outside the Top 20. (maybe I shouldn’t mention that Akil Baddoo was a 2020 Honorable Mention.) Last year’s Honorable Mention group contains several players who have moved up the rankings Many of the prospects you’ll read about today could be, and maybe should be, in the Top 20 in one year. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if a couple of these players are Top 10 prospects one year from now. Before we start, the following players are no longer “prospects” according to Baseball-Reference: Alex Kirilloff, Ryan Jeffers, Brent Rooker, Trevor Larnach, Ben Rortvedt, Nick Gordon, Bailey Ober, and Ralph Garza, Jr. FIRST-ROUND FEATURES If anyone in the top 20 is unable to fulfill their duties, well, the #21 prospect is 2020 first-round pick Aaron Sabato. The first baseman struggled in his professional debut. We have reviewed and replayed his statistics, the low batting average, lots of strikeouts. But, he also has a very good eye at the plate, and his final couple weeks in Ft. Myers and during his time in Cedar Rapids, Sabato reminded us of the power potential that he possesses. Likewise, 2019 first-round pick Keoni Cavaco falls out of the top 20. While he still has immense tools, speed, power, and arm strength, he continued to struggle at the plate in Ft. Myers, especially as the season went along. He also fought some injuries including a concussion. Cavaco was one of the Twins prospects who was most hurt by the lost 2020 season. He remained young for the Low-A level and certainly had less pro experience than most. But often, talent and athleticism work out and Cavaco remains very intriguing. ALREADY DEBUTED Jovani Moran was drafted in 2015 and in 2021, he finally made his MLB debut in September. The lefty has put up huge strikeout numbers throughout his minor league career. He dominated at Double-A and then Triple-A before spending the final month with the Twins. He could be a big part of the Twins bullpen for years to come. ON THE 40 ALREADY A couple of very hard-throwing right-handers on the 40-man roster fell just outside the Top 20. Drew Strotman came to the Twins from Tampa in the Nelson Cruz trade. He’s got a four-pitch mix that includes a fastball that can touch 98 mph. He struggled in his time with the Saints, but he should help the Twins in 2022. Even after Tommy John surgery, the Rays had added Strotman to the 40-man roster. Chris Vallimont came to the Twins from the Marlins in the Lewin Diaz trade in 2019. Another starter with a big fastball, Vallimont sits 94 to 96 and touched 97. He was very inconsistent in 2021, especially with his control. Too many walks. However, he was a strikeout machine and his stuff is so good the Twins put him on their 40-man roster after the season. ARM STRENGTH The 2019 Twins draft included a lot of college pitchers, and several of them have made an impression already, even with the lost 2020 season. Casey Legumina didn’t pitch after that 2019 draft as he was recovering from Tommy John surgery, so 2021 was his professional debut. Sawyer Gipson-Long began the season with a rough start, but he proved durable and unlike many, he became an innings eater. At the same time, he too recorded a lot of strikeouts. WE HARDLY KNOW YE We already mentioned Aaron Sabato above, but all four of the Twins 2020 draft picks received votes, but not enough to get into the Top 20. Frankly, we just haven’t seen enough of them yet for various reasons. Alerick Soularie put up big offensive numbers at Tennessee before the Twins made him their second round pick. Unfortunately in spring training, he had a foot injury, so he didn’t get into games until the second half of the season. Marco Raya was the team’s 4th round pick in 2020, and with a minor injury, he did not pitch at all in 2021 either, so he is yet to make his professional debut. Yet, reports out of instructional league mentioned that he was hitting 97 mph with his fastball. When he was drafted, it was for things like control, a strong pitch mix. To add velocity to that is really exciting. Kala’i Rosario was their fifth and final pick of the 2020 draft. He was one of the most powerful prep bats in that draft. His pro debut came in the FCL and he was named the Twins Daily Short-Season Minor League Hitter of the Year. Of course, we also didn’t see a lot of the 2021 draft picks, but a few of them have already made an impression. No 2021 draft pick made a bigger impression than fourth-round pick Christian Encarnacion-Strand. He hit in 21 of 22 games played and posted a .391/.424/.598 (1.022) with four homers. Third-round pick Cade Povich also was impressive. The southpaw from Nebraska pitched in just 10 innings in his pro debut, but he had 19 strikeouts in that time. And again, reports from the instructional league noted that he was hitting 97 mph fairly consistently. Yasser Mercedes received a $1.7 million signing bonus from the Twins just a month ago. An athletic outfielder, Mercedes is just 16-years-old but obviously an intriguing talent. In 2018, Misael Urbina received a $2.75 million signing bonus from the Twins as a 16-year-old international free agent. A week into the 2021 season, Urbina moved up to the Mighty Mussels. He was one of the younger players in the league and struggled, hitting under-.200 and yet he held his own and showed a good plate approach. Yunior Severino came on strong after he was promoted from Ft. Myers to Cedar Rapids. After hitting .245 in 63 games with Ft. Myers, he hit .321 in 35 games for the Kernels. Combined, he was second in the organization with 29 doubles. As I look at this group of Honorable Mentions, it is incredibly exciting. There are five or six pitchers that are very intriguing in this list with big velocity and the ability to get strikeouts. There are a few hitters that have big power potential. As I said in the beginning, many of these players could move up the rankings in 2022. That is a lot of talent, and those are guys who rank outside of the Twins Daily Top 20 prospects. Check back over the next two weeks to see who our 2021 Top 20 Twins Prospects are.
  14. On June 23, 2020, the Minnesota Twins selected Aaron Sabato, a bat-first first baseman out of the University of North Carolina with the 27th overall pick of the MLB draft, and signed him to an over-slot bonus of $2.75M. In his final full season at North Carolina prior to the draft, Sabato hit .343/.453/.696 with 18 home runs in 64 games. Sabato immediately found himself as a top-8 prospect in the Twins organization with optimism around that huge bat. Then came his debut in the pros, when things went south for the big man. In his first season as a professional in 2021, Sabato hit just .202 while striking out in 32% of his plate appearances across his time with Fort Myers and Cedar Rapids. As a result of his poor play, Sabato has crashed hard down prospect boards. On MLB.com, Sabato moved from the 8th ranked Twins prospect prior to the 2021 season down to 18th, where he found himself at the end of the season. While Sabato certainly had a disappointing debut season in pro ball, there are reasons for optimism for the right-handed slugger. First of all, Sabato showed that his plate discipline is legit. In 464 plate appearances in 2021, Sabato walked 19.8% of the time. To put that in perspective, only Juan Soto posted a higher BB% in the MLB last season. The high BB% contributed to Sabato still posting an on-base percentage of .373 despite the low batting average of .202. Additionally, Sabato improved quite a bit following his promotion from Fort Myers to Cedar Rapids. The Low-A Southwest League (Formerly the Florida State League) is notorious for being a league that is tough on batters, and Sabato suffered from that during his time there. However, after he was moved up to High-A Cedar Rapids on August 25, Sabato showed improvement. During his 22 games with the Kernels, Sabato posted a batting line of .253/.402/.613 (1.015 OPS) with eight home runs in 97 plate appearances, after hitting 11 home runs in 367 plate appearances in Low-A. While Sabato maintained a high K% of 33% in High-A, his improved home run rate allowed him to improve his overall slash line greatly. Over the last 23 games of his 2021 season, Sabato crushed nine home runs. His home runs weren’t wall scrapers either, Sabato showed time and time again down the stretch that his power is absolutely legitimate, including center field and opposite-field power. Aaron Sabato has a lot to improve on if he wants to carve out a career as a big leaguer. As a bat-first first baseman with little defensive ability, Sabato will need to be exceptional with the bat in order to stick, and his low batting average and sky-high strikeout percentage weren’t that. At just 22-years-old, though, and still possessing all of that pedigree as a first-round pick, Sabato shouldn’t yet be counted out as a legitimate prospect. Especially with the ability that the right-hander showed down the stretch with plus-plus power and an exceptional ability to draw walks. Sabato certainly needs to cut down on the strikeouts, but the talent is absolutely still there. Let’s not give up yet on Aaron Sabato.
  15. In today’s rankings, there are some interesting names. There are a few college draft picks that had some ups and downs throughout the season, but their tool set remains quality and clear. There is a former highly ranked international free agent who came to the team in a trade and made his unexpected debut in 2021. And there is a young player that hasn’t spent a lot of time in the organization yet but who is really exciting. Here are my choices for the 6-10 hitting prospects in the Minnesota Twins organization. #10 1B Aaron Sabato 2021 STATS: .202/.373/.410, 18 2B, 19 HR, 57 RBI, 32.1 K%, 19.8 BB%, 1/1 SB Aaron Sabato was the Twins first-round draft pick (27th overall) out of the University of North Carolina in 2020. Over 83 college games, he hit .332/.459/.698 (1.158) with 31 doubles and 25 homers. He was added to the Twins depth camp at 2021 spring training and then began the season with Low-A Ft. Myers. It was certainly a struggle for him, especially in the first half of the season. Only one player in all of minor league baseball had more walks than Sabato, but he also struck out a lot more than was expected. However, late in the summer he started showing a little more power. In 85 games with the Mussels, he hit .189/.365/.357 (.722) with 15 doubles and 11 homers. He was promoted to Cedar Rapids and played in 22 games. He hit .253/.402/.613 (1.015) with eight homers. He had 92 walks and 149 strikeouts on the season, certainly more than was expected from a strong college bat. But, getting out of the former Florida State League and experiencing the success in Iowa reminds us of the immense power potential that he does have. #9 IF Edouard Julien 2021 STATS: .266/.434/.480, 28 2B, 1 3B, 18 HR, 72 RBI, 28.0 K%, 21.4 BB%, 34/39 SB Edouard Julien grew up in Quebec. Out of high school, the Phillies drafted him in the 37th round in 2017. He declined and went to Auburn where he (and teammate Will Holland) led Auburn to the 2019 College World Series. The Twins took him in the 18th round of the 2019 draft. While he really wanted to go back to Auburn, the Twins gave up fourth-round money and he decided to sign. Unfortunately, he went to Peru for the Can-Am Games but hurt his elbow and needed Tommy John surgery. He likely would have missed at least half of a 2020 season either way. So, his professional debut came in May in Ft. Myers. He played 47 games and hit .299/490/.456 (.946) with 12 doubles, three homers and 21 steals (in 23 attempts). Yes, a .490 on-base percentage. He moved up to Cedar Rapids for 65 more games. He hit .247/.397/.494 (.891) with 16 doubles, 15 home runs and 13 more stolen bases. On the season, he struck out 144 times, but he led minor league baseball with 110 walks. In college, he was a power hitter and upon joining the Kernels, he showed that again. But he added the speed dimension back to his game. He’s got a great eye and with those things combined, he becomes a very intriguing prospect. We just don’t know where he is going to play. #8 IF Spencer Steer 2021 STATS: .254/.348/.484, 18 2B, 3 3B, 24 HR, 66 RBI, 21.5 K%, 11.3 BB%, 8/12 SB A southern California native, Spencer Steer headed north to the University of Oregon despite being drafted by Cleveland in the 29th round of the 2016 draft. He was a starter all three years in Eugene. He hit .349/.456/.502 (.958) with 20 extra base hits as a junior, and the Twins selected him with their third round pick. He played 20 games in Elizabethton before ending with 44 games in Cedar Rapids. Following the lost 2020 season, Steer was a late addition to the Twins depth camp during spring training in 2021. He homered in a game against the Atlanta Braves. It was a sign of things to come. In an interview with Twins Daily following the 2019 season, Steer said, “I’m not the most powerful guy, but I think I can be a guy who drives in runs. For that reason you can stick me at the top of the order and I’ll find ways on base and draw a lot of walks. I think at this level, I’m more of a top of the order guy, but that can always change as I get older and put on more weight.” He began the season with High-A Cedar Rapids and hit .274/.409/.506 (.915) with seven doubles and ten home runs in 45 games. He was promoted to Wichita where he hit .241/.304/.470 (.773) with 11 doubles and 14 more homers. As Torii Hunter would have said, his man-muscles arrived. Defensively, he played 46 games at second base, 38 games at third base and 15 games at shortstop. Asked early in the year if Steer was a future utility player, Kernels manager Brian Dinkelman said no. He thinks he can be an everyday second baseman, but they will continue playing him around the infield. Steer should start 2022 with the Wind Surge, but he could get a chance to play in St. Paul in the season’s second half. He just turned 24 in December. #7 OF Gilberto Celestino 2021 STATS: .277/.371/.423, 18 2B, 7 HR, 31 RBI, 21.8 K%, 11.4 BB%, 4/5 SB 2021 MLB STATS: .136/.177/.288, 3 2B, 2 HR, 3 RBI, 22.2 K%, 4.8 BB%, 0/0 SB First and foremost, Twins fans need to realize that what they saw from Gilberto Celestino isn’t necessarily the player that he is or certainly will become. Frankly, the 22-year-old looked like a guy who had only played eight games of High-A baseball in 2019, missed all of 2020 and had just 21 games in Double-A before being called up to the big leagues. What we saw late in the year in St. Paul. We saw a guy who takes good plate appearances and is willing to walk. He can hit for some average, and he does have a little pop in his bat. Defensively, despite some nervous issues in his first stint with the Twins, he is a plus defensive outfielder, fully capable of play centerfield well. He has good (though not great) speed. He typically takes good routes, and he has a strong and generally accurate arm. Expect that he will spend most of the 2022 season at age 23 and in St. Paul. He should mostly play in centerfield, but with Byron Buxton locked in, he really should play all three outfield spots and be ready when needed. #6 OF Kala’i Rosario 2021 STATS: .277/.341/.452, 10 2B, 4 3B, 5 HR, 40 RBI, 31.7 K%, 9.1 BB%, 4/4 SB There were just five rounds in the 2020 draft due to the lockout. The Twins drafted Kala’i Rosario from Waiakea High School in Hawaii with their fifth round pick. It was noted that, along with Red Sox early pick Blaze Jordan, Rosario had as much power as any prep player from that draft. He signed, but of course, there was no season for him to report to Ft. Myers. In 2021, he stayed at the complex and then played most everyday for the FCL Twins once their season. With solid all-around offensive numbers, Rosario was named the Twins Daily short-season Minor League Hitter of the Year. He played in 51 games and showed off the extra base power. He also walked at a decent clip. Clearly he will need to keep working and try to reduce that strikeout rate, but the bat is legit and the power is legit. Defensively, he will be a corner outfielder. He spent about 75% of his innings in right field and the rest in left field. He also still has work to do with the glove and arm, but he does have the potential to an average corner outfielder. Obviously he has several levels to work through on his way up the organizational ladder. He’s going to be fun to watch. Presumably, he will spend the majority of the 2022 season in Ft. Myers again, this time with the Mighty Mussels. If he is able to show much power in that league (he’ll turn 20 in July) next year, his prospect status should go up even further. And if he doesn’t, but he shows an improved eye and produces more contact, it will be very exciting to see how he does when he moves up to Cedar Rapids. I think this is another interesting group. The first three listed above are college bats. Sabato certainly had his struggles early, but he came on late and his power is legit. Julien showed off all of his skills, his ability to know the strike zone and get on base, use his speed and also hit for a lot of power. Steer’s power certainly arrived and has moved up quickly. Celestino remains really young, and certainly was not at all ready for the big leagues when he was called up, but he has upside both offensively and defensively. Finally, Rosario is very young, and a long way from the big leagues, but he has a lot of potential with his bat that will be fun to watch. So there are hitting prospects 6-10. What do you think of this group? Please feel free to discuss and ask questions. And also try to guess how the Top 5 will be ranked when that is posted later this week. Previous Rankings Hitters Part 1: 26-30 Hitters Part 2: 21-25 Hitters Part 3: 16-20 Hitters Part 4: 11-15 Hitters Part 5: 6-10 Pitchers Part 1: 26-30 Pitchers Part 2: 21-25 Pitchers Part 3: 16-20 Pitchers Part 4: 11-15 Pitchers Part 5: 6-10
  16. Entering the 2021 season, it's not as if Miranda was a completely unknown commodity. Minnesota selected him in the second-round pack in 2016, and his first two professional seasons were spent in the rookie leagues, where he posted a .722 OPS. In 2018, most of his season was at Low-A as Miranda combined for a .760 OPS. Before the pandemic, he played at High-A and was limited to a .663 OPS. Minnesota eventually left him unprotected in the Rule 5 Draft, but he luckily stayed in the organization. Miranda's 2021 production is what an organization hopes can happen as a player develops through their system. He was a surprise player that produced big power numbers in the minor's upper levels. Here are three prospects that can follow Miranda's footsteps this year for various reasons. Power Production: Austin Martin One of the knocks against Martin throughout his professional career has been his lack of power. When the Blue Jays drafted him, he was coming off a collegiate career where he posted a 1.007 OPS. Last season, he made his professional debut and played the entire season at Double-A. In 93 games, he combined for a .796 OPS with 25 extra-base hits. Before his 30 home run explosion, there were questions about Miranda's power development. After 2021, Miranda's power concerns have been put to rest, and Minnesota hopes for the same kind of transformation from Martin in 2022. Surprise Production: Yunior Severino Initially, the Braves signed him, but MLB granted his free agency after Atlanta was punished for illegal infractions on the international market. Atlanta's loss was Minnesota's gain. Like Miranda, Minnesota left Severino unprotected from the Rule 5 Draft. Last season, he hit .273/.372/.430 (.802) between Low- and High-A. He was younger than the average age of the competition at both levels. Next season, he will be 22-years-old, and he should reach Double-A. There is a chance a team selects him in the Rule 5 Draft, but it's tough to imagine him sticking as a big-league utility player for the entire 2022 season. Upper-Level Production: Aaron Sabato Things didn't go perfectly for Sabato in his first professional season. Minnesota selected him with their first-round pick in 2020, so expectations for him entering the year were high. At Low-A, he hit .189/.365/.357 (.722) with a 117 to 73 strikeout to walk ratio in 85 games. After being promoted to High-A, he posted a 1.015 OPS with 11 extra-base hits in 22 games. Based on his college experience, Sabato should be penciled in to spend the bulk of 2022 in the upper-levels of the minors. Can Sabato duplicate his production from Cedar Rapids as he moves up the organizational ladder? Which player do you think will be this year's Miranda? Are there other players that should be on the list? Leave a COMMENT and start the discussion. MORE FROM TWINS DAILY — Latest Twins coverage from our writers — Recent Twins discussion in our forums — Follow Twins Daily via Twitter, Facebook or email
  17. 6-10: 10. LHP Jovani Morán 9. LHP Steve Hajjar 8. RHP Marco Raya 7. RHP Chris Vallimont 6. OF Kala’i Rosario 5. RHP Simeon Woods Richardson Predicting a breakout for a global top-100 prospect seems odd. For Woods Richardson, you could describe it as more of a bounce back. The Twins received the tall, well-regarded right-hander and Austin Martin in the blockbuster that sent José Berríos to Toronto last July. Woods Richardson had a forgettable season, posting a 5.91 ERA and 14% walk rate in just over 53 innings at Double-A. Even with those numbers, Woods Richardson used his (fluctuating) mid-90s fastball and sharp slider to strike out 77 of the 240 batters he faced. He just turned 21, and his future remains bright. 4. LF/OF Alerick Soularie The Twins picked Soularie in the 2nd round of the 2020 draft after he hit a remarkable .336/.448/.586 in 76 games at Tennessee. Soularie’s 1.068 OPS in 2019 was the third-highest mark in the SEC, behind only JJ Bleday (Marlins No. 5 prospect) and future teammate Austin Martin. Soularie’s future position is questionable, and he’ll likely fill multiple spots as he moves up the system. He was limited with a broken foot early in 2021 but returned to hit .240/.367/.360 in 34 games, mainly for Fort Myers. I’ll take the over on Soularie’s projected impact for 2022. 3. 1B Aaron Sabato It was a rough professional start for Sabato, whom the Twins selected with their first-round pick during the COVID-19 shutdown. The slugging Sabato hit just .189 for Fort Myers but buoyed it with a .365 On-Base Percentage, walking in nearly 20% of his plate appearances. The Twins promoted Sabato despite his shoddy numbers, and he responded hugely. The former North Carolina star hit .253/.402/.613 for an OPS over 1.000 in 97 plate appearances for the Kernels. He bashed eight homers in just 22 games, finally taking advantage of strikes he received for getting ahead in the count. He has a chance to move up quickly in 2022. 2. RHP Jhoan Duran Duran was undoubtedly on his way to Minnesota before an elbow injury derailed his season. Standing 6-foot-5 and 230 pounds, Duran is an imposing presence with the stuff to boot. He reaches 100 MPH with his fastball and pairs it with a devastating “splinker” hybrid, a pitch that should help him get both lefties and righties out in the majors. The Twins have a slew of potential threes or fours in their system. They only have a few who possess the repertoire to become a true No. 1 starter. Duran fits that bill, and it’s not out of the question that he could operate a spot in the Twins’ rotation as early as mid-2022. 1. OF Emmanuel Rodríguez It’s ill-advised to project teenagers as future stars, but if there’s one player in the Twins’ system who could warrant that excitement, it’s Rodríguez. Signed as an international free agent in 2019, Rodríguez quickly established himself during his first professional season. The 18-year-old left-handed swinger slugged .524 in 37 games for the FCL Twins. Rodríguez posted an .870 OPS despite striking out in nearly 40% of his plate appearances. More consistent contact and an adapted approach would turn Rodríguez, who plays a strong centerfield, into a true force. That could happen in 2022. Who are you most excited about? Comment below! MORE FROM TWINS DAILY — Order the Offseason Handbook — Latest Twins coverage from our writers — Recent Twins discussion in our forums — Follow Twins Daily via Twitter, Facebook or email
  18. Current First Baseman: Miguel Sano In his seventh big-league season, Sano played over 120 games for the first time in his career. Offensively, he hit at least 28 or more home runs for the third time, and he has posted an OPS+ of 105 or higher in six of his seven seasons at the MLB level. For his career, Sano has a 119 OPS+ and an .819 OPS. Last season, he made major-league history by becoming the fastest to 1,000 career strikeouts, which broke the record by 86 games. At first base, Sano is one of the worst defenders in baseball. In 2021, he posted a -5.6 SDI, and only Boston's Bobby Dalbec ranked lower than him among AL first basemen. With Nelson Cruz gone, it seems likely for Minnesota to shift to a rotational system at DH, which includes Sano getting more time at that position. 40-Man Roster Options Last season, the Twins used three different players at first base besides Sano. Alex Kirilloff and Mitch Garver both seem like logical options to get more reps at first base. Kirilloff is likely the Twins' long-term solution at first base as he should be a cornerstone of the team's line-up for years to come. In fact, Kirilloff ranked as the third-best defensive first baseman through the middle of last season. If Garver hits like last season, the Twins need him in the line-up more often, and playing him at first base allows that to happen. On the Farm Options Not all of the players listed below are guaranteed to be on the team's roster at the start of next season. Still, it offers some insight into the organization's first base depth. Minnesota has multiple first base options populating the rosters in the upper minors. The Twins signed Curtis Terry to a minor league deal in November. He'll play at Triple-A. Last season, he made his big-league debut with the Rangers and went 4-for-45 with two doubles. He has posted an OPS of .882 or higher in his last three minor league seasons while averaging over 20 home runs per season. Besides Terry, Minnesota also has a variety of catchers in the high minors that see some time at first base, including some names below. There is a trio of first base options at Double-A. Roy Morales signed out of independent baseball in March 2021, and last year he posted a .379 OPS but didn't have much power. Gabe Snyder was a 21st round pick back in 2018, and he was limited to 46 games last season as he dealt with a broken hamate. Alex Isola, a 22-year-old, split time between catcher and first base at High-A. He was younger than the average age of the competition at his level, and he hit .243/.342/.425 with 32 extra-base hits in 98 games. Aaron Sabato is probably the most highly-regarded prospect among the first base prospects because he was a former first-round pick. He struggled to start the year in his professional debut. He had just a .679 OPS at the end of June. In his final 59 games, however, he posted a .877 OPS with 17 home runs and ten doubles while also being promoted to High-A. He only played 22 games in Cedar Rapids, so he seems likely to start at that level. Like Sabato, Christian Encarnacion-Strand is another college masher with a lot of pop in his bat. Minnesota selected him in the fourth round of the 2021 MLB Draft, and he made his debut at Low-A. In 22 games, he hit .391/.424/.598 (1.022) with eight extra-base hits. These totals are very similar to what he produced at Oklahoma State, so he will be a player to watch in the years to come. Overall, Minnesota may have a new first baseman at the MLB level with a few prospects to watch during the 2022 campaign. What do you think about the organization's depth at first base? Leave a COMMENT and start the discussion. OTHER POSTS IN THE SERIES — Catcher
  19. All three of these players currently don't rank in the team's top-10 prospects. Selecting them as a breakout prospect means they have a shot at being ranked in the team's top-10 by the end of next season. Drew Strotman, RHP Current TD Prospect Rank: 14 Minnesota acquired Strotman along with Joe Ryan from Tampa in exchange for two months of Nelson Cruz. Fans saw Ryan's impact in 2021, and now they can hope for Strotman to impact the rotation in 2022. As a 24-year-old, he pitched all of 2021 at the Triple-A level, where he was three years younger than the average age of the competition. After being traded to the Twins, his ERA rose over four runs, but he pitched more than double the number of innings he had thrown in any other professional season as he returned from Tommy John surgery. Scouting reports have him with three-four pitches ready for the big leagues, which is one of the biggest reasons the Twins targeted him. Spencer Steer, INF Current TD Prospect Rank: 20 Minnesota drafted Steer in the third round back in 2019 out of the University of Oregon. During the 2019 season, he hit .280/.385/.424 (.809) with 25 extra-base hits in 64 games. As a 23-year old, he spent time at High- and Double-A this season and a hit combined .254/.348/.484 (.833) with 45 extra-base hits in 110 games. The Twins' front office has focused on college bats in previous drafts. During the 2022 season, projections have him playing at Double- and Triple-A, putting him on the doorstep to the big leagues. Both of those levels are where Miranda found success this season, and Steer will look for a similar jump next season. Aaron Sabato, 1B Current TD Prospect Rank: 22 Sabato, a 2020 first-round pick, struggled at the beginning of 2021 as he got his first taste of professional baseball. In 85 games at Low-A, he hit .189/.365/.357 (.722) with 26 extra-base hits. Also, he was over half a year older than the average age of the competition in his league. Based on his college experience, Minnesota wasn't afraid to be aggressive with him in the second half. After being promoted to High-A Cedar Rapids, he posted a 1.015 OPS with 11 extra-base hits in 22 games. Minnesota drafted him because he was known for his powerful swing, and there were signs he was starting to put it together at the end of 2021. Can he carry those changes over to 2022? Which of these prospects stands out the most to you? Who do you think will have a breakout 2022 campaign? Leave a COMMENT and start the discussion. MORE FROM TWINS DAILY — Latest Twins coverage from our writers — Recent Twins discussion in our forums — Follow Twins Daily via Twitter, Facebook or email
  20. SAINTS SENTINEL Saints 4, Cubs 3 Box Score Drew Strotman: 6 IP, 8 H, 3 R/ER, BB, 3 K HR: None Multi-hit games: None The Saints willed their way to victory Friday after being out-hit by the Iowa Cubs. St. Paul scored twice via hit-by-pitch, sandwiched between a Jimmy Kerrigan RBI single. The Saints recorded zero extra-base hits but walked four times and went 7-for-30 at the dish. Drew Strotman started and worked around eight hits and a walk en route to a quality start and win. It was Strotman’s second quality starts in his last three outings. Jason García, Chris Nunn and Vinny Nittoli combined for three scoreless innings and three strikeouts. St. Paul has a chance to take four-of-five from Iowa with a win Sunday. Andrew Albers will make the start. KERNELS NUGGETS River Bandits 2, Kernels 1 Box Score Sawyer Gipson-Long: 4 2/3 IP, 3 H, R/ER, 2 BB, 9 K HR: Aaron Sabato (1) Multi-hit games: Edouard Julien (2-for-5), Jair Camargo (2-for-4) This outstanding Championship Series continued with another tight ballgame Friday. The Kernels led this series 2-1 and had plenty of opportunities to pull away and win it all in Game Four. Sawyer Gipson-Long was absolutely fantastic, striking out nine and allowing just one run on an double in the fifth. Osiris German followed that up with five strikeouts in three innings of scoreless relief. The staff gave the Kernels every chance to win. Aaron Sabato blasted a solo homer to take a 1-0 lead, but the Kernels left 23 runners on base, failing to score more than the lone run. In the bottom of the ninth, Logan Porter hit a walk-off homer to left off Zach Featherstone to force a decisive game five Sunday. TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS OF THE DAY Pitcher of the Day - Sawyer Gipson-Long (4 2/3 IP, 3 H, R/ER, 2 BB, 9 K) Hitter of the Day - Aaron Sabato (1-for-5, HR) PROSPECT SUMMARY #6 - Jose Miranda (St. Paul) - 1-for-3, R, BB #12 - Matt Wallner (Cedar Rapids) - 0-for-3, BB #13 - Gilberto Celestino (St. Paul) - 1-for-3, R, BB #16 - Brent Rooker (Minnesota) - IN PROGRESS (0-for-2) SUNDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Iowa @ St.Paul (12:05 p.m.) - LHP Andrew Albers Cedar Rapids @ Quad Cities (6:30 p.m.) - TBD
  21. If you missed it, read Nick's Twins Week in Review after you've read about the minor league week. Is it just me, or was that season quick. Twenty weeks of minor league ball complete. The Saints have a couple of weeks to go, to match the Twins schedule. Wichita and Cedar Rapids begin their playoff runs on Tuesday. The Mighty Mussels and FCL Twins seasons are complete, but Tuesday also begins Instructional League. But, before we get to any of that, let's look back at Week 20 in the Twins minor leagues: RESULTS Triple-A: St. Paul Saints: Week (3-3, @ Indianapolis), overall (61-59) Double-A: Wichita Wind Surge: Week (4-2, hosting Arkansas), overall (69-51) High-A: Cedar Rapids Kernels: Week (4-2, @ Peoria), overall (67-53) Low-A: Ft. Myers Mighty Mussels: Week (3-1, hosting Tampa), overall (60-54) Complex League FCL Twins: Week (2-3), overall (21-38) STANDINGS Triple-A East Midwest: Toledo 69-51, Omaha 66-54, St. Paul 61-59. Double-A Central North: Wichita 69-51, NW Arkansas 64-55, Arkansas 64-56. High-A Central West: Quad Cities 77-41, Cedar Rapids 67-53, Wisconsin 59-60. Low-A Southeast: Tampa 73-43, Bradenton 71-48, Ft. Myers 60-54. IN CASE YOU MISSED IT Here are the week's Twins minor league-related articles. Twins Minor League Week in Review: One Week To Go Baseball Down Under: The Unique Journey of Aaron Whitefield Tuesday: Woods Richardson Deals, Saints Come Marching In Wednesday: Varland Does it Again Thursday: Wichita Surges Into Playoffs, Kernels Playoff Push Friday: Kernels Edge Closer Twins 2020 Rule 5 Rewind A 32-Year-Old Rookie, Twins Promote Drew Maggi Saturday: A No-Hitter?!* Kernels Klinch with Huge Win Highlights We will start with the Twins choices for the organizational hitter and pitcher of the week and mention several other Twins prospects who had good Week 20 performances. Twins Player of the Week: Aaron Sabato, Cedar Rapids Kernels Aaron Sabato has had an up and down season, but the 22-year-old has been much improved since the beginning of August, especially with the power numbers. In the final regular-season week, Sabato hit .333/.500/.833 (1.333) with three homers. He also walked seven times and had just four strikeouts. He was terrific over the final weekend when the team needed to win. In his first pro season since the Twins made him their first-round pick in the 2020 draft out of North Carolina, he began in Ft. Myers. In 85 games, he hit .189/.365/.357 (.722) with 15 doubles and 11 home runs. In just 22 games with the Kernels, he has hit .253/.402/.613 (1.015) with three doubles and eight home runs. Overall, in 464 plate appearances, he has 92 walks and 149 strikeouts. Twins Pitcher of the Week: Louie Varland, Cedar Rapids Louie Varland was terrific again this week. The 23-year-old from St. Paul struck out 11 batters in six innings in his start this week. He gave up just two runs (1 earned) on four hits and did not issue a walk. Varland was the team's 15th round pick in 2019 out of Concordia University in St. Paul. Varland began the season in Ft. Myers, where he pitched 47 1/3 innings over ten games (8 starts). He went 4-2 with a 2.09 ERA and a 1.20 WHIP. He was promoted to Cedar Rapids, where he's made ten starts. He is 6-2 with a 2.10 ERA and a 0.99 WHIP. In 103 total innings, he has struck out 142 batters while walking just 30. Other Strong Performances this Week St. Paul Saints The Saints had some really strong performances, especially from bullpen types. Robinson Leyer, Ryan Mason, Vinny Nittoli, and Chris Nunn each tossed three scoreless innings over two outings. Jason Garcia tossed four innings of shutout ball in his start. Derek Law made the first start of his professional career, and he gave up just one hit and struck out six batters over four shutout innings. Also, Beau Burrows had his best start since joining the Twins organization. He gave up just one run on four hits over 6 1/3 innings. He struck out six batters. Damek Tomscha had not been playing much recently, but this past week, he played in all six games and responded by hitting .375/.400/.708 (1.108) with three doubles, a triple, and a home run. Drew Stankiewicz also played more. In five games, he hit .385/.438/.615 (1.053) with a homer. Of course, Jose Miranda had another excellent week. He played six games and hit .357/.357/.643 (1.000) with two doubles, two homers, and eight RBI. Jimmy Kerrigan hit .400/.423/.560 (.983) with four doubles. Wichita Wind Surge The week's highlight has to be that the Wichita team clinched a playoff spot and the best record in the Double-A Central Division. They begin their championship series on Tuesday. The individual highlight probably is the performance of Simeon Woods Richardson. After two rough, unintentionally short outings, he made two appearances. He made one start and tossed three scoreless innings. On Sunday, he worked two scoreless innings out of the bullpen to prepare for the playoffs. Chris Vallimont had a nice start this week. He gave up one run on two hits over 5 2/3 innings. Cole Sands was terrific again. He tossed five scoreless innings in his start. In his past three starts, he has given up only an unearned run over 17 innings. Right-hander Hector Lujan became a first-time father, and he got four outs in a perfect outing. Melvi Acosta gave up zero earned runs on one hit over three innings. Erik Manoah pitched some big innings and was terrific. He allowed just one hit and one walk over 3 1/3 innings. He struck out five batters. Trey Cabbage had another solid week. Over five games, he hit .429/.500/.714 (1.214) with a double and a home run. Ernie de la Trinidad hit .308/.400/.615 (1.015) with a double and a big home run. Aaron Whitefield played five games and hit .375/.474/.438 (.911) with a double, three walks, and six stolen bases. Austin Martin hit .316/.480/.421 (.901) with two doubles. He also walked six times. Andrew Bechtold played in six games and hit .294/.357/.417 (898) with a double and a home run. I'm guessing a personal highlight for him was getting to catch a game. The day after the Wind Surge clinched their playoff spot and the top seed, Bechtold found himself behind the plate for a game. It is something that he has been working on throughout the season, trying to give himself more versatility. He caught the game that Cole Sands threw. There were no passed balls or wild pitches, and Sands tossed five scoreless innings. He must have done just fine. Cedar Rapids Kernels Not only did the Kernels have to finish with the second-best record in the High-A Central League, but they also had to win that spot by a game because Lake County and Great Lakes had the tiebreakers. The Kernels came up big and won their final three games to make the playoffs for the eighth time in eight seasons as a Twins affiliate. On Sunday, Aaron Rozek made the start, and the team couldn't have asked for more. He worked five shutout innings and gave up only a hit and a walk. Sean Mooney was outstanding too. He gave up one run on two walks and a hit batter over five innings. He did not allow a hit and struck out seven batters. Zach Featherstone worked in three games and had a big save. He worked 3 2/3 scoreless, hitless innings. He walked two and struck out seven batters. Osiris German also was crucial. He came into two big situations and gave up only one hit over four scoreless innings. He struck out six batters without issuing a walk. Carlos Suniaga and Tyler Watson each had a save as well. Edouard Julien hit just .231, but he posted a .964 OPS with two doubles and three home runs. DaShawn Keirsey had two home runs in Sunday's playoff clincher and three home runs this week. Matt Wallner went 7-for-23 (.304) with a double and a home run. Ft. Myers Might Mussels Fair to say that the highlight of the week was Saturday night's combined no-hitter. Regi Grace worked the first three innings. Landon Leach followed with two innings before Bradley Hanner and Matthew Swain each worked a hitless inning. Swain blew fastballs by the three hitters he struck out in the final inning. Regi Grace struck out four batters in his three innings. Since returning from the shoulder impingement, he has worked nine scoreless innings over three appearances. Brent Headrick struck out seven batters over three scoreless innings in his final start of the season. Cade Povich struck out five batters over two innings in his outing. He gave up an unearned run. John Stankiewicz had a strong start. In six innings, he gave up one run on five hits and a walk. He struck out six batters. Charlie Mack played in three games. He went just 2-for-6 (.333), but he walked five times (.636 OBP) and had a big triple. Patrick Winkel went 3-for-8 (.375) with two doubles and two walks to give him a 1.170 OPS. Mikey Perez has been fantastic since debuting a couple of weeks ago. In four games this week, he hit .444/.500/.667 (1.167) with two doubles. Willie Joe Garry hit .385/.385/.769 (1.154) with a triple and a home run. FCL Twins The FCL Twins concluded their season on Saturday morning. The highlight(s) of the week involved more players getting just a taste of pro ball before the end of the season. 2021 draft picks, right-handed pitchers Christian McLeod, Travis Adams, and Johnathan Lavallee made their pro debuts. Righty Hunter McMahon returned to the mound for a rehab appearance and struck out four batters in two scoreless innings. Mike Paredes, another 2021 pick, made another appearance and struck out five batters over two perfect innings. Wilker Reyes gave up just one hit over three scoreless innings. Kala'i Rosario ended his season strong. He went 4-for-10 (.400) with a double and a home run. Rubel Cespedes and LaRon Smith each hit a homer during the week. Lowlights St. Paul Saints Bryan Sammons struggled in his start. He was charged with seven runs on seven hits (2 HR) and three walks in 3 1/3 innings. Ian Hamilton gave up four runs on five hits and four walks over 2 2/3 innings (though he did strike out six of the eight batters he got out). Yennier Cano gave up three runs on four hits and four walks over 2 1/3 innings. Tomas Telis has been terrific again for the Saints this season. In five games last week, however, he hit .136/.208/.136 (.345). BJ Boyd hit .150/.190/.200 (.390) in five games. Wichita Wind Surge Ben Gross made two appearances, one out of the bullpen and then his first Double-A start on Sunday. Combined, he gave up nine runs (8 earned) on 11 hits and six walks in just 5 2/3 innings. Jordan Balazovic gave up four runs on four hits and four walks in 3 2/3 innings. Zach Neff pitched once, but he gave up five runs (4 earned) on three hits and two walks. No player with more than five plate appearances had an OPS under .619. Cedar Rapids Kernels Cody Laweryson gave up six runs on eight hits, a walk, and a hit batter over 5 1/3 innings. Denny Bentley gave up two runs on five hits and got just four outs. Seth Gray had a tough week overall. He had two hits in 20 at-bats (.100) in six games. However, his home run on Saturday night gave the Kernels a 7-6 lead in the ninth inning. Anthony Prato went 2-for-14 (.143). Alex Isola as 4-for-22 (.182). Ft. Myers Might Mussels Jake Rucker went 0-for-9 for the week. Alerick Soularie went 1-for-14 (.071). Misael Urbina went 2-for-13 (.154), though he did have a double. PROSPECT SUMMARY This Prospect Summary shows our updated Twins Top 20 Prospect Rankings. #1 - Royce Lewis (Wichita) - Out for Season (torn ACL) #2 - Austin Martin (Wichita) - 37 games, .254/.399/.381 (.779) with 8 doubles, 3 home runs, 19 RBI, 23 BB, 30 K. #3 - Jordan Balazovic (Wichita) – 20 GS, 97.0 IP, 98 H, 38 BB, 102 K, 3.62 ERA, 1.40 WHIP #4 - Simeon Woods-Richardson (Wichita) - 4 G, 3 GS, 8.0 IP, 6 H, 8 BB, 10 K, 6.75 ERA, 1.75 WHIP. #5 - Jhoan Duran (St. Paul) – 5 G, 4 GS, 16.0 IP, 16 H, 13 BB, 22 K, 5.06 ERA, 1.81 WHIP (on IL with a right forearm strain) #6 - Jose Miranda (St. Paul) – 117 games, .338/.394/.565 (.959) with 28 doubles, 28 homers, 86 RBI, 39 BB, 72 K #7 - Joe Ryan (Minnesota) - St. Paul (2 GS, 9.0 IP, 5 H, 2 BB, 17 K, 2.00 ERA, 0.78 WHIP), Minnesota (3 GS, 17.0 IP, 7 H, 2 BB, 14 K, 2.12 ERA, 0.53 WHIP) #8 - Matt Canterino (Cedar Rapids) – 5 GS, 21.0 IP, 10 H, 4 BB, 43 K, 0.86 ERA, 0.67 WHIP (IL, elbow strain) #9 - Chase Petty (Complex) - 2 G, 1 GS, 5.0 IP, 6 H, 1 BB, 6 K, 5.40 ERA, 1.40 WHIP. #10 - Keoni Cavaco (Ft. Myers) – 60 games, .233/.296/.301 (.597) with 6 doubles, 2 triples, 2 homers, 24 RBI, 18 BB, 89 K, 5 SB (Temporary Inactive List) #11 - Josh Winder (St. Paul) - 14 GS, 72.0 IP, 55 H, 13 BB, 80 K, 2.63 ERA, 0.94 WHIP (IL, shoulder impingement) #12 - Matt Wallner (Cedar Rapids) – 66 games, .264/.350/.508 (.858) with 14 doubles, 2 triples, 15 homers, 47 RBI, 28 BB, 98 K. #13 - Gilberto Celestino (St. Paul) – Wichita (21 games, .250/.344/.381 (.725) with 5 doubles, 2 homers. 11 BB, 24 K), St. Paul (39 games, .310/.405/.490 (.894) with 11 doubles, 5 homers, 24 RBI, 20 BB, 33 K), Minnesota (22 games, .140/.183/.298 (.482) with 3 BB, 13 K) #14 - Drew Strotman (St. Paul) - 10 GS, 47.0 IP, 55 H, 25 BB, 38 K, 7.28 ERA, 1.70 WHIP. #15 - Noah Miller (Complex) - 22 games, .238/.316/.369 (.685) with 3 doubles, 1 triple, 2 homers, 14 RBI, 9 BB, 26 K #16 - Brent Rooker (Minnesota) – St. Paul (58 games, .239/.368/.566 (.934) with 8 doubles, 1 triple, 19 homers, 37 BB, 74 K), Minnesota (46 games, .206/.294/.413 (.707) with 9 doubles, 8 homers, 15 RBI, 13 BB, 58 K) #17 - Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) – 3 GS, 14.2 IP, 13 H, 6 BB, 23 K, 1.84 ERA, 1.30 WHIP (underwent Tommy John surgery on June 9th) #18 - Misael Urbina (Ft. Myers) – 101 games, .191/.299/.286 (.585) with 12 doubles, 4 triples, 5 homers, 52 RBI, 54 BB, 82 K, 16 SB) #19 - Cole Sands (Wichita) – 19 G, 18 GS, 80.1 IP, 59 H, 35 BB, 96 K, 2.46 ERA, 1.17 WHIP #20 - Spencer Steer (Wichita) - 110 games, .254/.348/.484 (.833) with 18 doubles, 3 triples, 24 homers, 66 RBI, 55 BB, 105 K) LOOKING AHEAD Ft. Myers Season is Complete. High-A Central League Championship Series: Cedar Rapids vs. Quad Cities: (Louie Varland, Sean Mooney, Casey Legumina, Sawyer Gipson-Long, TBD) Double-A Central League Championship Series: Wichita vs. NW Arkansas: (Jordan Balazovic, Cole Sands, Austin Schulfer, TBD, TBD): Iowa @ St. Paul: (Derek Law, Bryan Sammons, Beau Burrows, Drew Strotman, Andrew Albers): Also, Instructional League/camp starts on Tuesday in Ft. Myers for some players, particularly those who have lost time due to injury. Good luck to the Wind Surge and the Kernels this week!
  22. TRANSACTIONS INF Drew Maggi selected by Twins from AAA St. Paul Saints Sentinel St. Paul 5, Indianapolis 9 Box Score Bryan Sammons: 3 1/3 IP, 7 H, 7 ER, 3 BB, 4 K HR: None Multi-hit games: Tomás Telis (3-for-5), Drew Stankiewicz (2-for-4, RBI) The Saints lost on Saturday. Bryan Sammons had a rough day at the office. He allowed seven runs as Indianapolis put up back-to-back four-run efforts in the 3rd and 4th innings. The score was close at times. The Saints originally took the lead in the 2nd inning thanks to singles by Sherman Johnson and Drew Stankiewicz, but that lead did not last for long. Indianapolis instantly responded with five runs over the next two innings; runs that were capped off with a bases-clearing double from Taylor Davis. Damek Tomscha brought the game within striking distance with a triple and eventually came around thanks to a balk. The good news ends there as Indianapolis piled on four more runs in the 4th inning and essentially ended the game there. Mitch Garver went 1-4 with a single and a strikeout in his rehab appearance. Wind Surge Wisdom Wichita 3, Arkansas 5 Box Score Austin Schulfer: 5 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 3 K HR: None Multi-hit games: None The Wind Surge lost a close one on Saturday. Offensively, Wichita was limited to only singles and walks, but the team was able to scrap themselves to a few runs. Austin Martin, Aaron Whitefield, Jermaine Palacios, and Leobaldo Cabrera all stole a base on Saturday (and Palacios stole two). The steals directly to the three runs the Wind Surge scored. Three runs would not be enough to win. Austin Schulfer allowed two runs in his start, but Evan Sisk matched that total in relief of Schulfer. The Travelers tacked on another run, but that proved to just be unnecessary breathing room. Wichita put together a rally in the 9th inning as Palacios and Trey Cabbage both took walks, but Whitefield and Andrew Bechtold were unable to bring any more runners home. Kernels Nuggets Cedar Rapids 6, Peoria 3 Box Score Sawyer Gipson-Long: 6 1/3 IP, 7 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 8 K HR: Edouard Julien (14), Aaron Sabato (8) Multi-hit games: Alex Isola (2-for-4) The Kernels won a close game on Saturday. Sawyer Gipson-Long continued his ridiculous strikeout streak by punching out eight Chiefs. He now has 134 punchies on the season, which, by my count, is pretty darn good. Gipson-Long might still fly under the radar on prospect lists, but he certainly is a name that should be kept track of. Offensively, the Kernels dominated. Only one hitter had multiple hits but that was because every other hitter was too busy taking walks. The team walked eight times with Aaron Sabato leading the way with three free passes on top of his homerun. Let’s talk about his homer. Sabato’s 5th inning shot was his eighth in 92 plate appearances with the Kernels. Over a 600 plate appearance season (a traditional full year of play), that would be good for 52 blasts. I don’t think you need me to tell you how good that is. Not to be outdone, Edouard Julien blasted his 14th homer with the Kernels in the 3rd inning. Julien has seen a dramatic boost in home runs since his promotion (three with Fort Myers, 14 with Cedar Rapids over a comparable amount of playing time), and the new power is quite intriguing. If he can find the perfect mix of discipline and power, then we may be looking at a great hitter for the Twins. Osiris German and Tyler Watson combined to end the game for Cedar Rapids with 2 2/3 clean innings of work between the two pitchers. Mussel Matters Fort Myers 5, Tampa 6 (7 innings) Box Score Jackson Hicks: 0 IP, 1 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 0 K HR: Willie Joe Garry Jr. (4) Multi-hit games: Willie Joe Garry Jr. (2-for-3, HR, R, 2 RBI) The Fort Myers Miracle lost their paused game on Saturday. Cade Povich took over for Jackson Hicks and performed admirably. He struck out five batters over his two innings of work without allowing an earned run. Povich now has 16 strikeouts over eight innings with Fort Myers, not a bad start at all. Fort Myers held the lead late in the game thanks to Willie Joe Garry Jr’s. two-run homer, Misael Urbina’s double, and some early-inning shenanigans from Christian Encarnacion-Strand and Kole McKinnon. The 6th inning proved to be the back-breaker, though. A single from Tyler Hardman, with the aid of a Garry Jr. error, scored the game-ending go-ahead run. The Mighty Mussels had three total errors in the game. The three errors, along with going 1-9 with RISP, proved to be too much for Fort Myers to overcome. Game two: Fort Myers 3, Tampa 0 Box Score Regi Grace: 3 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 4 K HR: None Multi-hit games: None The Mighty Mussels threw a no-hitter* in game two. ...Kind of. MLB already established that a seven-inning no-hitter does not technically count, but I find that to be lame, so Fort Myers threw a no-hitter on Saturday (as declared by Matt Braun.) Regi Grace was astonishingly efficient in his start. Landon Leach, Bradley Hanner, and Matthew Swain combined to complete the game in relief of Grace. In total, the Mighty Mussels struck out 11 batters, allowed no hits (duh), and walked just one batter. That lone walk proved to be the sole blemish on the night. The Fort Myers offense, to their credit, did their part as well. Will Holland doubled home a run, Jake Rucker brought in another with a sacrifice fly, and Patrick Winkel added on with a run-scoring double. Those three runs were more than enough for the Mighty Mussels in game two. Quotes following the game: Matthew Swain, who struck out the side in the ninth inning, said, "I just focused and took it pitch-by pitch. Just trying to get strike one and eliminate hitters. Just wanted to finish out the season strong, on a good note. I had a little chip on my shoulder this game." Tonight's starter, Regi Grace, said of the group, "It's just our organizational philosophy; throw nasty (stuff) in the zone. I guess all four of us were all a little extra nasty tonight." Catcher Patrick Winkel said, "(Manager) Brian (Meyer) told us before the week, this might be the last time you guys play together, so try to have fun with it, and that's exactly what we're doing. That just comes through on the field, the level of energy and the focus we have. We're just trying to enjoy these last few days as a group. We don't know if or when we'll ever play together again. Just trying to go out on a good note." Winkel said of his pitchers, "Regi was dominating with his fastball and then going to his curveball, keeping them off balance. Leach came out and was working really fast, not giving them a chance to breathe and catching them off guard. Working down and away. Putting the ball where he wanted to put it. Hanner came in and had great energy and focus. He didn't back down. He had the top of the order, some of the best hitters in this league, and obviously Swain came in and closed the door by just blew fastballs by them." Hanner said, "I just wanted to end the season on a high note, and I can't think of a better way to do it." Complex Chronicles FCL Twins 4, FCL Red Sox 3 (7 innings) Box Score Mike Paredes: 2 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 K HR: Kala’i Rosario (5) Multi-hit games: Kala’i Rosario (2-for-3, HR, 2 R, 2 RBI), Gregory Duran (2-for-3, 2B) The FCL Twins won their paused game on Saturday. Technically, Kala’i Rosario kicked off the game yesterday with a monstrous first-inning home run. But, because the game did not end until today, I am commandeering the content for today’s write-up. Here it is: Mike Paredes mowed through the FCL Red Sox offense to begin the game before Chase Petty took over to carry the torch. His second professional outing resulted in three earned runs over his three innings of work-not the best performance on the surface, but he also struck out four batters. Those three earned runs turned the tide of the game against the FCL Twins as they now found themselves down by a run. The team was not finished, though. A 6th inning double-steal brought home the tying run, and a 7th inning single from Ricardo Olivar ended the game for good. The Twins and Red Sox were supposed to play a second game, but that game was canceled. Today was also the last day of the season for the FCL and it appears that the team will not make up the game on Sunday. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Sawyer Gipson-Long Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Aaron Sabato 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, 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) - 1-5, 2B #7 – Joe Ryan (Minnesota) - Did not pitch #8 – Matt Canterino (Cedar Rapids) - Injured List (Right Elbow Strain) #9 – Chase Petty (Complex) - 3 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 4 K #10 – Keoni Cavaco (Fort Myers) - Did not play #11 – Josh Winder (St. Paul) - Injured List (Right Shoulder Impingement) #12 – Matt Wallner (Cedar Rapids) - 1-5, R, 2 K #13 – Gilberto Celestino (St. Paul) - 0-3, 2 R, K #14 – Drew Strotman (St. Paul) - Did not pitch #15 – Noah Miller (FCL Twins) - 1-3, RBI, BB, 2 K #16 – Brent Rooker (Minnesota) - 0-3, BB, K #17 – Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) - Out for Season (Tommy John surgery) #18 – Misael Urbina (Fort Myers) - 1-6, R, RBI, 2B, BB, K #19 – Cole Sands (Wichita) - Did not pitch #20 – Spencer Steer (Wichita) - 0-4, 2 K SUNDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Tampa @ Fort Myers (10:00 AM) LHP Zarion Sharpe St. Paul @ Indianapolis (11:35 AM) RHP Drew Strotman Arkansas @ Wichita (12:05 PM) RHP Simeon Woods Richardson Cedar Rapids @ Peoria (12:35 PM) TBD
  23. Transactions Minnesota Twins select the contract of RHP Nick Vincent from Triple-A St. Paul Minnesota Twins option LHP Andrew Albers to Triple-A St. Paul Minnesota Twins sent C Mitch Garver on a rehab assignment to Triple-A St. Paul Minnesota Twins promote IF Ernie Yake to Triple-A St. Paul from Twins Complex SAINTS SENTINEL Indianapolis 2, St. Paul 0 Box Score The Saints' never got in gear in this one, spoiling a solid pitching performance across the board. Jason Garcia got the start for Saint Paul and was effective over four full innings. He allowed four hits and walked one but did not allow a run and struck out one. Unfortunately, the Saints’ bats struggled early as well and this contest stayed scoreless until the fifth, when Indianapolis got on the board first. Now facing reliever Edgar Garcia, Indianapolis grabbed a run in the fifth off a Bligh Madris double and another in the sixth from an Ethan Paul single. Those turned out to be the only runs of the game, spurring Indianapolis to a 2-0 win. The Saints only managed multiple base runners in the first and ninth innings and didn’t score in either inning. Miguel Yajure sailed through six against St. Paul before turning it over to the bullpen that was just as effective. Gilberto Celestino had a big 3-for-3 night, but he was the only Saints hitter with more than one knock. Chris Nunn pitched a scoreless seventh and eighth innings but the damage was done during Edgar Garcia’s outing. WIND SURGE WISDOM Wichita 2, Arkansas 1 Box Score Fresh off clinching a spot in the playoff, Wichita gave the ball to Cole Sands and Twins Daily’s #19 prospect was dominant, as he and Kody Funderburk keyed a pitcher’s duel victory. Sands went five full innings and only allowed three hits while striking out four. He did allow three walks but did not allow any of them to score. In fact he, didn’t allow anyone to score. From there, Funderburk took over and it was as if nothing changed. Kody cruised through three hitless innings, and though he ran into some trouble and allowed a run in the ninth, he still closed out the win. On the offensive end, the Surge didn’t do a lot, but it was just enough. The first run of the game came in the second, when a Jermaine Palacios single finished off a rally that brought Leobaldo Cabrera to the plate. Hours of scoreless baseball later, Ernie De La Trinidad blasted a shot into the bullpen to grab Wichita’s second run of the game. Those runs proved to be all the Surge needed, thanks to the dominant pitching. D.J Burt and Ernie De La Trinidad had the only multi-hit games for Wichita. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 7, Peoria 6 Box Score With a playoff berth very much in the balance, Cedar Rapids turned to Casey Legumina tonight for his debut start for the Kernels. Legumina allowed three runs and struck out seven in 4 ⅔ innings, keeping the Kernels in it and allowing their late offensive explosion to carry the day. The Kernels didn’t wait to take the lead in this one as Michael Helman came to the plate on a throwing error from Peoria third baseman Jacob Buchberger. Peoria answered in the bottom of the third with a run coming in on a Jhon Torres double, but the Kernels took their lead right back off a massive solo homer from Aaron Sabato. Unfortunately, the Chiefs took the lead for themselves in the fifth with two runs, with Torres and Pedro Pages registering RBI singles. Cedar Rapids still trailed 3-2 heading in the eighth inning, but then they decided they’d had enough of that. The offense blasted three homers in the inning for four runs to take a strong three-run lead. The bombs came from Edouard Julien, Michael Helman, and Aaron Sabato for his second of the night. However, the Chiefs took that punch and responded with one of their own in their half of the eighth. They strung together four straight hits and put up three runs to tie the game, with RBI going to Tommy Jew (2) and Tyler Reichenborn. But, as if to spit in the face of Peoria’s comeback, Seth Gray hit a go-ahead bomb to dead center to lead off the ninth inning. And, though the bottom of the ninth inning didn't go smoothly for Cedar Rapids, no runs were scored and the Kernels secured a massive win. Coming into this game, the Kernels were tied with Lake County for the second playoff spot in High-A Central and both teams were just one game up on Great Lakes with three to play. With losses tonight from both of their playoff rivals, this Kernels win gives them a one-game lead over Lake County. Cedar Rapids trails both Lake County and Great Lakes in the playoff tiebreaker, so that one-game lead is crucial as they'll need it to secure a spot against Quad Cities in the playoff. MUSSEL MATTERS Tampa 0, Fort Myers 0 (postponed top first) Box Score The Mussels were scheduled to finish last night’s postponed game against Tampa tonight. Unfortunately, the rain continued to create problems in Fort Myers and no baseball could be played today. The game that had been scheduled for today has been cancelled and will not be rescheduled. The Mussels and Tarpons will play a doubleheader tomorrow, weather permitting. COMPLEX CHRONICLES Game 1: FCL Red Sox 10, FCL Twins 2 Box Score It’s Friday, so you already know that the FCL Twins lost to the Red Sox. In the first half of a scheduled doubleheader the Twins struggled on both sides of the ball, losing 10-2. The Twins only managed four hits in this one and no hitter had a multi-hit game. The runs scored on two solo homers, one from LaRon Smith in the second, and the other from Rubel Cespedes in the fifth. The Red Sox offense scored runs in all but two innings and built their substantial lead with a four-run second inning and a three-run second. On the mound for the Twins, Giovahniey German started the game and struggled, allowing five runs (four earned) in less than two innings. Control was an issue for German, as he walked three batters and allowed a run to score on a wild pitch. Danny Moreno took over from German and was better, allowing a run and striking out three in two innings of work. Cole Bellair’s 2 ⅔ innings was the longest outing of the night, though he was touched for four earned runs during his time on the bump. Ricardo Velez took care of the seventh and was the only Twins pitcher to not allow a run. Game 2: FCL Twins 2, FCL Red Sox 0 (postponed, bottom second) Box Score TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS OF THE DAY Pitcher of the Day - Cole Sands (Wichita) - 5.0 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 3 BB, 4 K Hitter of the Day - Aaron Sabato (Cedar Rapids) - 2-for-4, 2 R, 2 RBI, 2 HR (7) PROSPECT SUMMARY #1 - Royce Lewis (rehab) - Out for season (torn ACL) #2 - Austin Martin (Wichita) - 1-for-4 #3 - Jordan Balazovic (Wichita) - Did not pitch #4 - Simeon Woods Richardson (Wichita) - Did not pitch #5 - Jhoan Duran (St. Paul) - Injured List (elbow strain) #6 - Jose Miranda (St. Paul) - 1-for-4 #7 - Joe Ryan (Minnesota) - Did not pitch #8 - Matt Canterino (Cedar Rapids) - Injured List (right elbow strain) #9 - Chase Petty (Complex) - Did not pitch #10 - Keoni Cavaco (Fort Myers) - Temporarily Inactive List #11 - Josh Winder (St. Paul) - Injured List (right shoulder impingement) #12 - Matt Wallner (Cedar Rapids) - 0-for-5, 3 K #13 - Gilberto Celestino (St. Paul) - 3-for-3, BB, 2B #14 - Drew Strotman (St. Paul) - Did not pitch #15 - Noah Miller (Complex) - Did not play #16 - Brent Rooker (Minnesota) - 2-for-4, R, 2 RBI, 2B, HR (8) #17 - Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) - Out for season (Tommy John surgery) #18 - Misael Urbina (Fort Myers) - Rained Out #19 - Cole Sands (Wichita) - 5.0 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 3 BB, 4 K #20 - Spencer Steer (Wichita) - 0-for-3, BB, K SATURDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS St. Paul @ Indianapolis (6:05 PM CST) - LHP Bryan Sammons (1-2, 5.49 ERA) Arkansas @ Wichita (6:05 PM CST) - RHP Austin Schulfer (6-7, 4.37 ERA) Cedar Rapids @ Peoria (6:35 PM CST) - RHP Sawyer Gipson-Long (2-3, 4.63 ERA) Tampa @ Fort Myers, Doubleheader (Game 1: 3:30 PM CST, Game 2 to follow) - TBD Please feel free to ask questions and discuss Friday’s games!
  24. TRANSACTIONS No transactions today. SAINTS SENTINEL Omaha 6, St. Paul 3 Box Score Omaha touched St. Paul for four homers in this one and led wire-to-wire, taking the game 6-3. Bobby Witt Jr. got the game started for the Storm Chasers with a solo homer in the first frame, and Ryan McBroom matched his teammate three innings later to make it 2-0. Omaha added on in the sixth and Witt was involved again. The Royals’ top prospect doubled in a run and later scored on an M.J. Melendez sacrifice fly. The Saints offense finally got off the mark in the sixth, when a Gilberto Celestino double started a rally that scored two and featured an RBI each from Mark Contreras and Jimmy Kerrigan. The Saints’ momentum stopped there, though, as Robinson Leyer gave up a solo bomb to the first batter of the next inning to make it 5-2, and a second McBroom homer in the eighth stretched the Omaha lead one notch further. Tomas Telis homered in the eighth to cut the deficit to 6-3, but the Saints went down quietly in the ninth and lose to that score. Charlie Barnes got the start for the Saints tonight and made just the one mistake to Bobby Witt Jr. over 3 ⅓ innings. Barnes’ early hook didn’t seem to serve any purpose for the Saints in this game, but manager Toby Gardenhire may still have taken him out for a reason: As Seth noted in his tweet, Chandler Shepherd took over from there, but he struggled, allowing three runs in 1 ⅔ innings. Leyer allowed just a solo homer in his two innings, as did Nick Vincent in his only inning of work. Chris Nunn took the ninth and was the only Saint pitcher to not allow a run. Telis and Celestino were the Saints with multi-hit games tonight. WIND SURGE WISDOM Wichita 5, NW Arkansas 3 Box Score Jordan Balazovic did a lot to confirm his title as the Twins’ top pitching prospect with a truly special outing on the mound that keyed tonight’s victory for Wichita. Balazovic allowed a run on an RBI groundout in the third, but he went six full innings, struck out five, and, most notably, did not allow a hit. Balazovic, who had thrown 88 pitches when he left the game, was showing no signs of slowing down, but manager Ramon Borrego evidently didn’t see the benefit in stretching his top asset’s limits. Still, enjoy Balazovic’s six innings of dominance: Meanwhile, the Surge offense was having quite the interesting game as well. Wichita got their first two runs in the third, thanks to Austin Martin. The Wichita star shortstop came to the plate with men on first and second and poked a weak grounder to right side, but he busted out of the box and forced an overthrow (allowing one to score), and then got in a rundown that allowed the second run to score. Just watch: In the fifth, Trey Cabbage (who else?) also drove in two runs, but in a very, very different way: The Surge added another run in the fifth off a Roy Morales single that scored Chris Williams. The Naturals got their first hits of the game in the eighth off Zach Neff, and they scored two as well. Clay Dungan doubled in Kevin Merrell and later scored on a Vinnie Pasquantino sac fly to cut the lead to 5-3. Jordan Gore was rock solid in the ninth inning, though, and put away the two-run W. After Balazovic’s six no-hit innings, Adam Lau pitched a no-hit inning of his own, though he did walk two batters. Neff allowed the two runs (and the Naturals’ only two hits) in the eighth and only managed to get two outs. Gore grabbed the last four outs of the game without allowing a base runner. Cabbage and Roy Morales had multi-hit games for the Surge. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids X, Wisconsin X Box Score This game was an absolute nail-biter until it wasn't: the Kernels explode for four runs in the ninth to take it 7-3. Matt Wallner and Aaron Sabato struck first for the Kernels with back-to-back solo homers in the top of the first: However, Sean Mooney allowed that lead to slip away immediately by allowing a three-run shot to Joey Wiemer in the bottom of the inning. In the third though, Alex Isola pumped a homer of his own well over the fence in the left center to tie the game for Cedar Rapids. Both teams built and squandered numerous chances over the middle innings of this game, but it stayed tied at three into the late innings. Like they had in the fifth, the Timber Rattlers loaded the bases with one out in the eighth, and, just like the fifth, they couldn't bring even one run across. And, unlike in the fifth, this time Wisconsin's lack of clutch hitting really hurt them. While the Timber Rattlers were likely still cursing their failures in the eighth inning, Aaron Sabato came up with a man on and blasted his second bomb of the night to give the Kernels a two-run lead. Then, not to be outdone, Isola followed up with his second homer of the night, and the Kernels still weren't done. Gabriel Maciel ripped an RBI single up the middle to make the score 7-3 and effectively seal the game for Cedar Rapids. However, seemingly just to torture themselves, the Timber Rattlers loaded the bases one more time in the bottom of the ninth, and, one more time, they failed to score. But hey, it's hard to be that upset when you're dressed like this: Other than his three-run mistake, Sean Mooney hung tough on the mound for Cedar Rapids. Those were the only runs he allowed in four innings of work and he struck out six, though he did walk three. Denny Bentley was rock solid again in his 2 ⅔ innings of work, striking out four and working around three hits and two walks. Zach Featherstone got the Kernels into trouble with three walks in the eighth, but Osiris German got them out of the eighth. German went out for the ninth, too and got two outs but was removed from the game with two runners on. Melvi Acosta came on for the last out, and walk the bases loaded before finally closing out the game. MUSSEL MATTERS Palm Beach 2, Fort Myers 0 Box Score The Fort Myers’ arms, led by Cade Povich in his second Single-A start, were excellent in this game. However, the Palm Beach pitchers were two runs better and the Mussels drop this one, 2-0. Povich, the Twins’ latest third round draft pick, was very impressive in his three innings to start this game, allowing only one hit and no runs, while striking out five Cardinal batters. Miguel Rodriguez took the middle three innings of the game, and only allowed one run, a home run off the bat of Ryan Holgate in the fourth inning. Zaquiel Puentes took over from there and allowed only one run over the seventh and eighth innings, as he, too, fell victim to Holgate, this time through an RBI single. Bradley Hanner hurled a scoreless ninth inning to finish off a solid outing from the Mussels pitching staff. Still, despite the successes of their pitchers, Fort Myers never looked like winning this game because their offense fell flat. They did get seven hits – and even loaded the bases in the fifth – but they couldn’t string knocks together and their clutch hitting was atrocious. Alerick Soularie and Mikey Perez got multi-hit games, but the Mussels’ hitters might owe the pitching staff dinner after this 2-0 loss. COMPLEX CHRONICLES FCL Red Sox 16, FCL Twins 10 Box Score The bats came out to play for the FCL Twins tonight, but unfortunately, they came out in greater force for the FCL Red Sox and Minnesota’s complex leaguers drop this one 16-10. Leading the offense for the Twins was Carlos Aguiar, who bopped two homers for a total of four RBI, and Kala’i Rosario, who was 3-for-5 with three runs, two RBI, and a homer of his own. The Twins scored two in the top of the first, but never had the lead again despite plating seven runs over the fifth, sixth, and seventh innings. They added one in the ninth, but fell well short of the offensive output from the Red Sox. Other than Aguiar and Rosario, Wander Valdez was the only other Twin with a multi-hit game. It goes without saying that it was a struggle on the mound for the FCL Twins tonight. Giovahniey German started the game and allowed seven runs (six earned) over 2 ⅓ innings. His outing was low-lighted by three different wild pitches and five walks. John Wilson replaced German and was the most effective pitcher for the Twins, allowing only two runs (one earned) in 2 ⅔ innings of work. Danny Moreno followed Wilson, but followed more in German’s footsteps as he was touched for five runs in an inning and a third. Rafael Feliz finished the game by allowing two earned run in 1 ⅔ innings. TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS OF THE DAY Pitcher of the Day - Jordan Balazovic (Wichita) - 6.0 IP, R, ER, 0 H, 2 BB, 5 K Hitter of the Day - Aaron Sabato (Cedar Rapids) - 2-for-4, 2 R, 3 RBI, 2 HR, BB, K PROSPECT SUMMARY #1 - Royce Lewis (rehab) - Out for season (torn ACL) #2 - Austin Martin (Wichita) - 1-for-4 #3 - Jordan Balazovic (Wichita) - 6.0 IP, R, ER, 0 H, 2 BB, 5 K #4 - Simeon Woods Richardson (Wichita) - Did not pitch #5 - Jhoan Duran (St. Paul) - Injured List (elbow strain) #6 - Jose Miranda (St. Paul) - 1-for-4, K #7 - Joe Ryan (Minnesota) - Did not pitch #8 - Matt Canterino (Cedar Rapids) - Injured List (right elbow strain) #9 - Chase Petty (Complex) - Did not pitch #10 - Keoni Cavaco (Fort Myers) - Did not play #11 - Josh Winder (St. Paul) - Injured List (right shoulder impingement) #12 - Matt Wallner (Cedar Rapids) - 1-for-3, 2 R, RBI, HR, 2 BB, K #13 - Gilberto Celestino (St. Paul) - 2-for-4, R, 2B, K #14 - Drew Strotman (St. Paul) - Did not pitch #15 - Noah Miller (Complex) - 1-for-5, 2 K #16 - Brent Rooker (Minnesota) - 0-for-5, 3 K #17 - Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) - Out for season (Tommy John surgery) #18 - Misael Urbina (Fort Myers) - Did not play #19 - Cole Sands (Wichita) - Did not pitch #20 - Spencer Steer (Wichita) - 0-for-4, K SATURDAY'S PROBABLE STARTERS Omaha @ St. Paul (6:05 PM CST) - TBD NW Arkansas @ Wichita (6:05 PM CST) - RHP Chris Vallimont (5-6 5.75 ERA) Cedar Rapids @ Wisconsin (1:05 PM CST) - LHP Aaron Rozek (0-1, 4.38 ERA) Palm Beach @ Fort Myers (6:00 PM CST) - RHP Regi Grace (1-0, 3.47 ERA) Feel free to comment and discuss tonight’s games!
  25. Be sure to read Nick’s Twins Week in Review from yesterday, and then jump into the minor league week. Before we get started, let’s check out the organization’s transactions and the FCL Twins game from Monday. TRANSACTIONS There were several announced transactions on Monday’s minor league off day. RHP Jason Garcia was promoted from Wichita to St. Paul. Catcher Kyle Schmidt was promoted from Cedar Rapids to St. Paul. RHP Ben Gross was promoted from Cedar Rapids to Wichita. RHP Sean Mooney was promoted from Ft. Myers to Cedar Rapids. RHP Regi Grace was activated from Ft. Myers’ Injured List. LHP Cade Povich was moved from the Complex to the Ft. Myers roster. RHP Steven Cruz was placed on the 7-Day IL. (right middle finger injury) FCL Twins Talk FCL Twins 3, FCL Pirates 8 Box Score The big story on the positive side in this game was another home run for outfield prospect Emmanuel Rodriguez, his ninth of the season. Rubel Cespedes hit his second triple. Noah Cardenas had a single and a walk in his two plate appearances. Wilker Reyes gave up three runs on two hits over three innings. He walked three and struck out three batters. Jackson Hicks worked the next three innings. He gave up four runs on five hits and a walk. He struck out three. Elipidio Perez gave up one run on two hits and a walk in two innings. He struck out four batters. With that, let’s look at Week 17 in the Twins minor leagues: RESULTS Triple-A: St. Paul Saints: Week (0-6, @ Toledo), overall (53-49) Double-A: Wichita Wind Surge: Week (3-3, hosting Tulsa), overall (60-42) High-A: Cedar Rapids Kernels: Week (3-3, @ Beloit), overall (56-46) Low-A: Ft. Myers Mighty Mussels: Week (3-4, hosting Bradenton), overall (50-48) Complex League FCL Twins: Week (3-2), overall (15-27) IN CASE YOU MISSED IT Here are the week’s Twins minor league-related articles. Twins Minor League Week in Review: Debuts, Promotions and Lots of Wins Predicting Minnesota’s Next 4 Top Prospects to Debut Tuesday: Saints Begin Battle for Division Lead Wednesday: Ryan Cruises, Sabato’s Kernels Debut Thursday: Pitching, Hitting, and Everything in Between Getting Jhoan Duran Back on Track Friday: Blowouts and Pitcher’s Duels Jordan Balazovic’s Development is Critical Scouting Twins Prospects: RHP Sawyer Gipson-Long Saturday: Offensive Explosions and a Curfew-ed Game Sunday: First-Place Surge Find a Way HIGHLIGHTS We will start with the Twins choices for the organizational hitter and pitcher of the week, and then mention several other Twins prospects who had good Week 17 performances Twins Player of the Week: Trey Cabbage, Wichita Wind Surge For the second time this season, Trey Cabbage is the hitter of the week. He played all six games and hit .263/.462/.579 (1.040) with two homers and seven walks. He has had a powerful month of August and now has a combined 25 homers between Cedar Rapids and Wichita. Cabbage was the Twins fourth-round pick in 2015 out of high school in Tennessee. He has slowly worked up the organizational ladder and is currently breaking out as the power hitter that he has always had the potential to become. Twins Pitcher of the Week: Sawyer Gipson-Long, Cedar Rapids Kernels Gipson-Long was the choice for pitcher of the week for the second time this season. The first came when he was in Ft. Myers. He was recently promoted to Cedar Rapids and has continued to pitch well. Last week, Gipson-Long went six shutout innings in his start. He gave up six hits and struck out nine without issuing a walk. Other Strong Performances this Week St. Paul Saints When the team goes 0-6 for the week, it’s hard to find too many positives. However, there were a couple. Lefty Andrew Vasquez pitched 4 2/3 scoreless innings over two games. He gave up just one hit, though he hit two batters. He struck out five batters. Chandler Shepherd gave up one run on two hits over 5 1/3 innings in two relief appearances. Joe Ryan gave up one run on four hits in his start. He also walked one and struck out eight batters. He now has 17 strikeouts in nine innings as a Saints starter. Randy Dobnak made a rehab start for the Saints. He gave up one run on five hits and four walks in 4 2/3 innings. Not a great performance, but on Sunday, Rocco Baldelli said that Dobnak’s next appearance will be in the big leagues. Later, it was announced that Dobnak will start on Friday for the Twins. Drew Maggi continues to be very productive and sure would be a fun story to see him called up to the Twins in September. In five games last week, he hit .429/.500/.571 (1.071) with a triple. Wichita Wind Surge First highlight is that Twins Photographer Brace Hemmelgarn spent some time in Wichita last week and got some great photos! Jordan Gore continues to impress. Last week, he pitched in three games. In four innings, he gave up no runs, no hits, walked none and struck out five. He was 2-for-2 in save opportunities. Adam Lau pitched three scoreless innings over two appearances. He gave up no hits, walked none and struck out three. Evan Sisk had a good week. He tossed 3 2/3 scoreless innings. He gave up one hit, walked one and struck out three. He may not play a lot, but Leobaldo Cabrera had another impressive week. In three games, he went 3-for-7 with a triple, two homers and five walks. His OPS for the 12 plate appearances was a fun 2.238. Austin Martin played in all six games and hit .280/.333/.600 (.933) with two doubles, two homers and seven RBI. Cedar Rapids Kernels Denny Bentley, Andrew Cabezas, Osiris German, and Tyler Palm each threw two scoreless innings. In four innings, Melvi Acosta gave up two unearned runs on just one hit in four innings. He struck out four. Ryan Shreve gave up an unearned run over 3 1/3 innings.. He also recorded a save. Cody Laweryson gave up one run on four hits and a walk in five innings. Wander Javier played in four games and hit .462/.500/1.000 (1.500) with a double and two home runs. Yunior Severino hit .294/.429/.529 (.958) with two doubles and a triple. Aaron Sabato played in five games. He had four hits, two doubles and two home runs and a 1.000 OPS. Alex Isola started the week 0-for-11, but his 5-for-5 performance on Sunday included a home run. Ft. Myers Might Mussels Casey Legumina made two appearances. He gave up one run on two hits over six innings. He walked three and struck out seven batters. Sean Mooney struck out ten batters in four innings. He gave up one earned run and just two hits. John Stankiewicz gave up just one hit over four scoreless innings in his start. He walked one and struck out five batters. Will Holland played six games and hit .444/.524/.556 (1.079) with two doubles. Christian Encarnacion-Strand played his first six games as a pro ballplayer. He hit. 292 with a double and two home runs. FCL Twins Lefty Samuel Perez pitched twice. In 4 1/3 scoreless innings, he gave up two hits, walked none and struck out four batters. 2021 draft picks Cade Povich and David Festa made their pro debuts. Each gave up one hit over two scoreless innings. Danny Moreno gave up only a hit and a walk over 2 1/3 shutout innings. Elipidio Perez struck out eight batters in five innings. He gave up one run on three hits and three walks. LOWLIGHTS We are talking about small samples for these six-game weeks, so it’s important not to make any big decisions or develop a full impression on a player from this small size. It’s just a reminder of the fact that baseball is hard, and all players have good and bad stretches. St. Paul Saints Lefty Chris Nunn pitched twice. He recorded four outs and gave up five runs (4 earned) on three hits and five walks. Drew Strotman went 2 2/3 innings in his start. He gave up six runs on three hits and six walks. Ian Hamilton also pitched twice during the week and recorded four outs. He gave up four runs (3 earned) on four hits and two walks. Beau Burrows made two starts. In eight innings, he gave up ten runs on six hits (3 HR) and eight walks. BJ Boyd spent his first week with the Saints. He played in five games, a couple of times as a pinch hitter. He went 1-for-16 (.063). Jimmy Kerrigan played in all six games and hit .182/.217/.172 (.399) with 11 strikeouts in 23 plate appearances. Trevor Larnach went 2-for-14 (.143). Ben Rortvedt went 3-for-16 (.188) with eight strikeouts, though he was also promoted to the Twins on Sunday to back up Ryan Jeffers while Mitch Garver is on the IL. Wichita Wind Surge Lefty Zach Neff pitched 3 2/3 innings over two appearances. He gave up five runs on six hits (2 HR), hit two and walked two batters. DJ Burt played in five games and went 1-for-15 (.067) with seven strikeouts. Cedar Rapids Kernels Zach Featherstone had a rough week. He pitched twice and gave up three runs on two hits, both home runs, in 1 2/3 innings. He walked two also. Ben Gross gave up six runs on ten hits in five innings. Jair Camargo went 1-for-10 (.100) on the week. Matt Wallner went 2-for-19 (.105). Jeferson Morales had just two hits in 16 at bats (.125), but both hits were home runs. Aaron Sabato had a 1.000 OPS and four extra base hits. He also had 11 strikeouts in 18 at bats. Ft. Myers Might Mussels Juan Pichardo recorded four outs in his appearance. He gave up seven runs on six hits and two walks. Miguel Rodriguez returned from the IL to make a start. In one inning, he gave up four runs on four hits and three walks. Landon Leach was charged with nine runs (4 earned) on four hits, two hit batters and four walks in 2 2/3 innings. In two appearances, Matt Mullenbach gave up seven runs (6 earned) on 13 hits in five innings. Keoni Cavaco played in four games and went 1-for-14 (.071) with six strikeouts. Kyler Fedko went 1-for-11 (.091) with a double. Charles Mack went 2-for-13 (.154) with eight strikeouts in 13 at bats. TRENDING STORYLINE Originally, the minor leagues were not going to have any playoffs in 2021. Because the minor league regular season started a month later, the thought was that all teams being able to play two or three more weeks of games, rather than just a few teams getting a few extra games. Soon after the season started, minor league baseball reversed course. Low-A, High-A and Double-A will all have Best of 5 playoff series between the top two teams in each league, regardless of division. There will be no playoffs in Triple-A this year. The Triple-A teams will continue their normal schedule so that players can continue to play games and be ready for a call-up if needed. At Double-A, Wichita is currently five games ahead of Arkansas and Tulsa atop the division. In the High-A Central, Cedar Rapids is currently in second place, 12 games behind Quad Cities. However, they are eight games ahead of third-place Beloit. In the Low-A Southeast West Division, the Mighty Mussels are 16 games behind first place Tampa, and 11 games behind second-place Bradenton. PROSPECT SUMMARY This Prospect Summary shows our updated Twins Top 20 Prospect Rankings. #1 - Royce Lewis (Wichita) - Out for Season (torn ACL) #2 - Austin Martin (Wichita) - 23 games, .267/.417/.442 (.858) with 6 doubles, 3 home run, 17 RBI, 14 BB, 25 K. #3 - Jordan Balazovic (Wichita) – 16 GS, 77.0 IP, 79 H, 30 BB, 83 K, 3.62 ERA, 1.42 WHIP #4 - Simeon Woods-Richardson (Wichita) - Has not pitched since the Olympics. #5 - Jhoan Duran (St. Paul) – 5 G, 4 GS, 16.0 IP, 16 H, 13 BB, 22 K, 5.06 ERA, 1.81 WHIP (on IL with a right forearm strain) #6 - Jose Miranda (St. Paul) – 101 games, .336/.397/.572 (.969) with 25 doubles, 25 homers, 75 RBI, 37 BB, 66 K #7 - Joe Ryan (St. Paul) - 2 GS, 9.0 IP, 5 H, 2 BB, 17 K, 2.00 ERA, 0.78 WHIP #8 - Matt Canterino (Cedar Rapids) – 5 GS, 21.0 IP, 10 H, 4 BB, 43 K, 0.86 ERA, 0.67 WHIP #9 - Chase Petty (Complex) - Has yet to pitch. #10 - Keoni Cavaco (Ft. Myers) – 58 games, .236/.295/.306 (.600) with 6 doubles, 2 triples, 2 homers, 24 RBI, 17 BB, 84 K, 5 SB #11 - Josh Winder (St. Paul) - 14 GS, 72.0 IP, 55 H, 13 BB, 80 K, 2.63 ERA, 0.94 WHIP #12 - Matt Wallner (Cedar Rapids) – 49 games, .260/.338/.505 (.843) with 10 doubles, 2 triples, 11 homers, 35 RBI, 19 BB, 73 K. #13 - Gilberto Celestino (St. Paul) – Wichita (21 games, .250/.344/.381 (.725) with 5 doubles, 2 homers. 11 BB, 24 K), St. Paul (23 games, .289/.385/.506 (.891) with 6 doubles, 4 homers, 17 RBI, 12 BB, 19 K), Minnesota (22 games, .140/.183/.298 (.482) with 3 BB, 13 K) #14 - Drew Strotman (St. Paul) - 6 GS, 26.2 IP, 31 H, 16 BB, 20 K, 7.09 ERA, 1.76 WHIP. #15 - Noah Miller (Complex) - 10 games, .243/.310/.378 (.688) with two doubles, 1 homer, 6 RBI, 4 BB, 12 K #16 - Brent Rooker (St. Paul) – St. Paul (58 games, .239/.368/.566 (.934) with 8 doubles, 1 triple, 19 homers, 37 BB, 74 K), Minnesota (32 games, .200/.273/.408 (.681) with 7 doubles, 6 homers, 10 RBI, 8 BB, 41 K) #17 - Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) – 3 GS, 14.2 IP, 13 H, 6 BB, 23 K, 1.84 ERA, 1.30 WHIP (underwent Tommy John surgery on June 9th) #18 - Misael Urbina (Ft. Myers) – 88 games, .188/.293/.287 (.580) with 9 doubles, 4 triples, 5 homers, 49 RBI, 46 BB, 69 K, 12 SB) #19 - Cole Sands (Wichita) – 15 G, 14 GS, 58.1 IP, 47 H, 26 BB, 78 K, 2.93 ERA, 1.25 WHIP #20 - Spencer Steer (Wichita) - 92 games, .261/.361/.511 (.872) with 15 doubles, 2 triples, 23 homers, 56 RBI, 48 BB, 84 K) LOOKING AHEAD Ft. Myers @ Daytona: (AJ Labas, Bullpen Game, John Stankiewicz, Casey Legumina, Cade Povich, Regi Grace): Quad Cities @ Cedar Rapids: (Louie Varland, Sawyer Gipson-Long, Cody Laweryson, Sean Mooney, Aaron Rozek, Tyler Watson): Wichita @ Arkansas: (Jordan Balazovic, Chris Vallimont, Cole Sands, TBD, TBD, Jordan Balazovic) St. Paul @ Columbus: (Jason Garcia, Joe Ryan, Chandler Shepherd, Drew Strotman, Beau Burrows, Charlie Barnes): Feel free to ask any questions you like.
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