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  1. RED WINGS REPORT Buffalo Bisons @ Rochester Red Wings Box Score The Red Wings were out-hit 11-8, but came out victorious thanks to a couple of solo home runs and holding the Bisons to just 1 for 11 with runners in scoring position. Taylor Rogers gave up ten hits in 6.2 innings but managed to give up just three runs (two earned). Rogers walked one, and struck out three batters. Rogers picked up a win to move to 9-10 with an ERA of 3.85, nearly a run higher than it was ten starts ago when he was 7-4 with a 2.97 ERA. Over his last 10 Rogers is just 2-6 with a 5.14 ERA with a 1.522 WHIP and a 2.35/1 strikeout to walk ratio. Rogers' Monday night start was the first time since June 24 that he gave up two earned runs or fewer in a start. Rogers turned things over to the bullpen in the seventh and Cole Johnson pitched two-thirds of an inning spanning the seventh and the eighth, striking out one and giving up no runs, hits, or walks. Aaron Thompson finished the eighth in scoreless fashion and Michael Tonkin fanned two of the three batters he faced in the ninth to pick up his thirteenth save of the year. Xavier Avery hit a solo home run in the second inning to give the Red Wings an early lead. The Bisons came stampeding back and were up 3-1 when a Reynaldo Rodriguez single in the fifth inning evened the score. In the sixth inning Jose Martinez homered to left field, giving the Red Wings the lead and Rogers and the bullpen kept the Bisons bats silent the rest of the evening. Kennys Vargas started at designated hitter in the three hole and was 0-4 with a strike out. Vargas is 6-23 with five strikeouts and seven walks with more multi-walk games than multi-strikeout games since an August 11 promotion back to Rochester. Final: Bisons 3, Red Wings 4 LOOKOUTS LOOK-IN SCHEDULED OFF DAY MIRACLE MATTERS Charlotte Stone Crabs @ Fort Myers Miracle POSTPONED DUE TO RAIN KERNELS KORNER SCHEDULED OFF DAY E-TWINS E-NOTES Danville Braves @ Elizabethton Twins Box Score Andro Cutura pitched six strong innings for the E-Twins, giving up no runs on just three hits. He walked two and struck out four. His ERA is now 1.08 over his first nine starts for Elizabethton. Cutura, a Slidell, Louisiana native, was drafted by the Twins in the seventh round of the 2014 draft out of Southeastern Louisiana University. After Cutura's exit, Anthony Mciver pitched two scoreless, giving up a hit, a walk, and he struck out three. Alex Robinson pitched the ninth, giving up a hit and earning a strikeout to preserve the victory for the Twins. E-Town's ninth hitter, second basemen Manuel Guzman had one of the best games of his young career, 4-4 with two doubles, two RBI, and a run scored. Catcher A.J. Murray had a nice game as well, going 3-4 with a double, an RBI, a run scored and a strikeout. Final: Braves 0, Twins 6 GCL Twins GCL Orioles @ GCL Twins Box Score The GCL Twins gave up a pair of runs in the first, second and sixth innings and a single run in the seventh to fall by a score of 7-3 to the GCL Orioles. Starter Jovani Moran was making just the fourth start of his career, drafted in the seventh round of the 2015 draft out of the Carlos Beltran Baseball Academy in Puerto Rico. Jovani has yet to pitch more than four innings in a start, and Monday night was no exception. Moran gave up four hits, four runs, and two walks. He struck out just one of the fifteen batters he faced. Reliever Matz Schutte didn't fare much better, giving up a pair of runs in the sixth before being lifted for Rich Condeelis. Condeelis gave up a run on three hits, but struck out three and walked one in two innings. Andrew Vasquez pitched a scoreless ninth, but worked harder than he needed to, giving up a two-out single, then throwing a wild pitch before walking the next batter. Vasquez then struck out the final batter of the game to end the suffering for Twins pitchers. Leadoff hitter Christian Cavaness was 2-4 and first basemen Bryant Hayman was 2-4 with a double, the only hitters with more than one hit. The Twins did rack up four doubles, half of their eight hits on the night. In addition to Hayman's double, Blake Schmit, Robert Molina and Roberto Gonzalez also added two baggers. Final: Orioles 7, Twins 3 TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS OF THE DAY Hitter of the Day - Manuel Guzman, Elizabethton Twins Pitcher of the Day - Andro Cutura, Elizabethton Twins FRIDAY'S PROBABLES Buffalo @ Rochester - Jeff Francis vs. Logan Darnell (2-1, 1.54) Chattanooga @ Pensacola - Greg Peavey (6-4, 4.40) vs. Daniel Wright Charlotte @ Fort Myers (Double Header) - Buddy Borden vs. Stephen Gonsalves (5-1, 2.34), Greg Harris vs. TBD Kane County @ Cedar Rapids - Josh Taylor vs. Keaton Steele (4-3, 3.65) Danville @ Elizabethton - TBD vs. Josh Stashak (4-1, 1.80) Gulf Coast Twins @ Gulf Coast Orioles - TBD vs TBD
  2. The Twins started an important road trip with a frustrating extra inning loss to the Evil Empire (New York Yankees). Let's take a look down into the Twins' farm system to see if better things are on the way to Minnesota. RED WINGS REPORT Buffalo Bisons @ Rochester Red Wings Box Score The Red Wings were out hit 11-8, but came out victorious thanks to a couple of solo home runs and holding the Bisons to just 1 for 11 with runners in scoring position. Taylor Rogers gave up ten hits in 6.2 innings but managed to give up just three runs (two earned). Rogers walked one, and struck out three batters. Rogers picked up a win to move to 9-10 with an ERA of 3.85, nearly a run higher than it was ten starts ago when he was 7-4 with a 2.97 ERA. Over his last 10 Rogers is just 2-6 with a 5.14 ERA with a 1.522 WHIP and a 2.35/1 strikeout to walk ratio. Rogers' Monday night start was the first time since June 24 that he gave up two runs or fewer in a start. Rogers turned things over to the bullpen in the seventh and Cole Johnson pitched two-thirds of an inning spanning the seventh and the eighth, striking out one and giving up no runs, hits, or walks. Aaron Thompson finished the eighth in scoreless fashion and Michael Tonkin fanned two of the three batters he faced in the ninth to pick up his thirteenth save of the year. Xavier Avery hit a solo home run in the second inning to give the Red Wings an early lead. The Bisons came stampeding back and were up 3-1 when a Reynaldo Rodriguez single in the fifth inning evened the score. In the sixth inning Jose Martinez homered to left field, giving the Red Wings the lead and Rogers and the bullpen kept the Bisons bats silent the rest of the evening. Kennys Vargas started at designated hitter in the three hole and was 0-4 with a strike out. Vargas is 6-23 with five strike outs and seven walks with more multi-walk games than multi-strike out games since an August 11 promotion back to Rochester. Final: Bisons 3, Red Wings 4 LOOKOUTS LOOK-IN SCHEDULED OFF DAY MIRACLE MATTERS Charlotte Stone Crabs @ Fort Myers Miracle POSTPONED DUE TO RAIN KERNELS KORNER SCHEDULED OFF DAY E-TWINS E-NOTES Danville Braves @ Elizabethton Twins Box Score Andro Cutura pitched six strong innings for the E-Twins, giving up no runs on just three hits. He walked two and struck out four. His ERA is now 1.08 over his first nine starts for Elizabethton. Cutura, a Slidell, Louisiana native, was drafted by the Twins in the seventh round of the 2014 draft out of Southeastern Louisiana University. After Cutura's exit, Anthony Mciver pitched two scoreless, giving up a hit, a walk, and he struck out three. Alex Robinson pitched the ninth, giving up a hit and earning a strike out to preserve the victory for the Twins. E-Town's ninth hitter, second basemen Manuel Guzman had one of the best games of his young career, 4-4 with two doubles, two RBI, and a run scored. Catcher A.J. Murray had a nice game as well, 3-4 with a double, an RBI, a run scored and a strike out. Final: Braves 0, Twins 6 GCL Twins GCL Orioles @ GCL Twins Box Score The GCL Twins gave up a pair of runs in the first, second and sixth innings, and a single run in the seventh to fall by a score of 7-3 to the GCL Orioles. Starter Jovani Moran was making just the fourth start of his career, drafted in the seventh round of the 2015 draft out of the Carlos Beltran Baseball Academy in Puerto Rico. Jovani has yet to pitch more than four innings in a start, and Monday night was no exception. Moran gave up four hits, four runs, and two walks. He struck out just one of the fifteen batters he faced. Reliever Matz Schutte didn't fare much better, giving up a pair of runs in the sixth before being lifted for Rich Condeelis. Condeelis gave up a run on three hits, but struck out three and walked just one in two innings. Andrew Vasquez pitched a scoreless ninth, but worked harder than he needed to, giving up a two-out single, then throwing a wild pitch before walking the next batter. Vasquez then struck out the final batter of the game to end the suffering for Twins pitchers. Leadoff hitter Christian Cavaness was 2-4 and first basemen Bryant Hayman was 2-4 with a double, the only hitters with multi hit gams. The Twins did rack up four doubles, half of their eight hits on the night. In addition to Hayman's double, Blake Schmit, Robert Molina and Roberto Gonzalez also added two baggers. Final: Orioles 7, Twins 3 TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS OF THE DAY Hitter of the Day - Manuel Guzman, Elizabethton Twins Pitcher of the Day - Andro Cutura, Elizabethton Twins FRIDAY'S PROBABLES Buffalo @ Rochester - Jeff Francis vs. Logan Darnell (2-1, 1.54) Chattanooga @ Pensacola - Greg Peavey (6-4, 4.40) vs. Daniel Wright Charlotte @ Fort Myers (Double Header) - Buddy Borden vs. Stephen Gonsalves (5-1, 2.34), Greg Harris vs. TBD Kane County @ Cedar Rapids - Josh Taylor vs. Keaton Steele (4-3, 3.65) Danville @ Elizabethton - TBD vs. Josh Stashak (4-1, 1.80) Gulf Coast Twins @ Gulf Coast Orioles - TBD vs TBD
  3. The Minnesota Twins bullpen has been a problem for the last couple of months. Finding a bridge from the Twins starters to All-Star closer Glen Perkins has been a challenge. As the July trade deadline is now one week away, we are likely to hear lots of rumors involving relievers, but there are a few guys in the minor leagues who warranty consideration for a big league bullpen gig, including right-handed starter Tyler Duffey.Duffey began the 2014 season with four starts in Ft. Myers. He moved up to Double-A and then ended his season with three starts in Triple-A Rochester. He earned an invitation to big league camp, but then he began this season back in Double-A, this time with Chattanooga. He had to be disappointed, but he handled it well. He made eight starts and went 2-2 with a 2.56 ERA in 52.2 innings. He earned a promotion back to Triple-A Rochester. In his first four starts for the Red Wings, he went 0-4 with a 5.64 ERA and a 1.34 WHIP in just 22.1 innings. Opponents hit .312/.340/.387 (.727) against him. However, he has made some adjustment and in his seven starts since then he is 4-1 with a 0.74 ERA and a 0.64 WHIP over 48.1 innings. Opponents have hit just .174/.230/.236 (.466). While with Chattanooga, he had a streak of 16.2 innings without allowing a run. With the Red Wings, he had a streak of 33.2 innings without allowing an earned run. In most recent Twins seasons, Duffey would likely already be making starts in Minnesota. However, the Twins starting rotation has been strong this season. Even if the Twins were to remove a starter from their current rotation, Trevor May would be the guy who would jump back into the starting rotation. No offense to Taylor Rogers or JO Berrios (who had another strong start on Thursday), but if the Twins needed a starter from Rochester, Duffey would have to be the choice. That brings us back to the Twins struggling bullpen. Is it time for the Twins to give Tyler Duffey an opportunity in their bullpen? Duffey has been primarily a starter in the Twins minor league system. You recall, however, that the Twins drafted Duffey in the fifth round of the 2012 draft. At Rice University, he was a reliever. He was a co-closer with JT Chargois (current closer in Chattanooga). In other words, the bullpen role would not be unfamiliar to him. If the Twins were to call up Duffey in the next couple of weeks to pitch out of their bullpen, it wouldn’t have to mean that he would need to remain a reliever. Depending on the Twins offseason, he could be moved back to the starting role in the 2016 season if that makes sense. It would be a move to help them in their hopes to make the playoffs in 2015. That isn’t to say that you call him up and immediately throw him into the eighth inning. The goal would simply be for him to help bridge the gap from starter to Perkins. There are games when they need a guy to finish the sixth or pitch a couple of innings. Duffey can do that. His transition to starter happened in the Twins minor leagues in 2013, his first full pro season. As he told Twins Daily in a spring training interview, “Except for a summer when I went to the Cape and somebody got sick and I made a couple of starts, but other than that, I was a closer/second-inning panic guy to come in and throw four innings.” His stuff is ready for the big leagues as a starter. As a starter, he works with a fastball in the low-90s. His best pitch is his 12-6 curveball. He also has a decent change-up. In his limited time in pro ball when he has worked out of the bullpen, his fastball has touched 97. He said that one of the keys to his success has been his sinker. He is a ground ball pitcher. Duffey is not currently on the Twins 40-man roster. He would need to be added, though I’m sure the Twins could find someone to remove from the roster if a move were needed. There are relievers in Rochester who have pitched well in AAA and deserve an opportunity as well. Michael Tonkin has been back and forth between the Red Wings and Twins for the last three years. At some point, they just have to give him an opportunity and stick with him for an extended period of time. He is out of options in 2016. If there is a most-deserving reliever in Rochester, it has to be AJ Achter. The former 46th round draft pick has been consistently terrific since being moved to the bullpen before the 2012 season. He debuted last September with the Twins. With the Red Wings this year, he is 4-2 with a Twins minor league-leading 14 saves. He has a 2.81 ERA and a 0.89 WHIP in 41.2 innings for the Red Wings. He’s walked just 2.6 per nine innings while striking out 9.3 per nine innings. Starter Taylor Rogers, a southpaw, has limited left-handed AAA hitters to just a .189/.206/.197 (.403) line this year. With Brian Duensing improved of late and Ryan O’Rourke doing very well in his two weeks with the Twins, particularly against lefties, Rogers should continue to start for Rochester. However, he should also be a strong consideration for September recall. JO Berrios is certainly the top prospect in Rochester. The 21-year-old dropped his AAA ERA from 5.60 to 4.01 with seven shutout innings on Thursday. He has very good stuff and will likely be considered for a promotion in August as well. He doesn’t need to be added to the Twins 40-man roster until after the 2016 season, but if the Twins believe he can help them win in 2015, they won’t hesitate to promote him. AJ Achter should already be in the Twins bullpen. Tyler Duffey should be strongly considered as a bullpen arm down the stretch for the Minnesota Twins. If you’ve endured the past four seasons as a Twins fan, this dilemma – plenty of deserving candidates for promotion to the Twins – is more than welcomed! 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  4. Duffey began the 2014 season with four starts in Ft. Myers. He moved up to Double-A and then ended his season with three starts in Triple-A Rochester. He earned an invitation to big league camp, but then he began this season back in Double-A, this time with Chattanooga. He had to be disappointed, but he handled it well. He made eight starts and went 2-2 with a 2.56 ERA in 52.2 innings. He earned a promotion back to Triple-A Rochester. In his first four starts for the Red Wings, he went 0-4 with a 5.64 ERA and a 1.34 WHIP in just 22.1 innings. Opponents hit .312/.340/.387 (.727) against him. However, he has made some adjustment and in his seven starts since then he is 4-1 with a 0.74 ERA and a 0.64 WHIP over 48.1 innings. Opponents have hit just .174/.230/.236 (.466). While with Chattanooga, he had a streak of 16.2 innings without allowing a run. With the Red Wings, he had a streak of 33.2 innings without allowing an earned run. In most recent Twins seasons, Duffey would likely already be making starts in Minnesota. However, the Twins starting rotation has been strong this season. Even if the Twins were to remove a starter from their current rotation, Trevor May would be the guy who would jump back into the starting rotation. No offense to Taylor Rogers or JO Berrios (who had another strong start on Thursday), but if the Twins needed a starter from Rochester, Duffey would have to be the choice. That brings us back to the Twins struggling bullpen. Is it time for the Twins to give Tyler Duffey an opportunity in their bullpen? Duffey has been primarily a starter in the Twins minor league system. You recall, however, that the Twins drafted Duffey in the fifth round of the 2012 draft. At Rice University, he was a reliever. He was a co-closer with JT Chargois (current closer in Chattanooga). In other words, the bullpen role would not be unfamiliar to him. If the Twins were to call up Duffey in the next couple of weeks to pitch out of their bullpen, it wouldn’t have to mean that he would need to remain a reliever. Depending on the Twins offseason, he could be moved back to the starting role in the 2016 season if that makes sense. It would be a move to help them in their hopes to make the playoffs in 2015. That isn’t to say that you call him up and immediately throw him into the eighth inning. The goal would simply be for him to help bridge the gap from starter to Perkins. There are games when they need a guy to finish the sixth or pitch a couple of innings. Duffey can do that. His transition to starter happened in the Twins minor leagues in 2013, his first full pro season. As he told Twins Daily in a spring training interview, “Except for a summer when I went to the Cape and somebody got sick and I made a couple of starts, but other than that, I was a closer/second-inning panic guy to come in and throw four innings.” His stuff is ready for the big leagues as a starter. As a starter, he works with a fastball in the low-90s. His best pitch is his 12-6 curveball. He also has a decent change-up. In his limited time in pro ball when he has worked out of the bullpen, his fastball has touched 97. He said that one of the keys to his success has been his sinker. He is a ground ball pitcher. Duffey is not currently on the Twins 40-man roster. He would need to be added, though I’m sure the Twins could find someone to remove from the roster if a move were needed. There are relievers in Rochester who have pitched well in AAA and deserve an opportunity as well. Michael Tonkin has been back and forth between the Red Wings and Twins for the last three years. At some point, they just have to give him an opportunity and stick with him for an extended period of time. He is out of options in 2016. If there is a most-deserving reliever in Rochester, it has to be AJ Achter. The former 46th round draft pick has been consistently terrific since being moved to the bullpen before the 2012 season. He debuted last September with the Twins. With the Red Wings this year, he is 4-2 with a Twins minor league-leading 14 saves. He has a 2.81 ERA and a 0.89 WHIP in 41.2 innings for the Red Wings. He’s walked just 2.6 per nine innings while striking out 9.3 per nine innings. Starter Taylor Rogers, a southpaw, has limited left-handed AAA hitters to just a .189/.206/.197 (.403) line this year. With Brian Duensing improved of late and Ryan O’Rourke doing very well in his two weeks with the Twins, particularly against lefties, Rogers should continue to start for Rochester. However, he should also be a strong consideration for September recall. JO Berrios is certainly the top prospect in Rochester. The 21-year-old dropped his AAA ERA from 5.60 to 4.01 with seven shutout innings on Thursday. He has very good stuff and will likely be considered for a promotion in August as well. He doesn’t need to be added to the Twins 40-man roster until after the 2016 season, but if the Twins believe he can help them win in 2015, they won’t hesitate to promote him. AJ Achter should already be in the Twins bullpen. Tyler Duffey should be strongly considered as a bullpen arm down the stretch for the Minnesota Twins. If you’ve endured the past four seasons as a Twins fan, this dilemma – plenty of deserving candidates for promotion to the Twins – is more than welcomed!
  5. To see if the Twins’ affiliates came out on top in those games, read on! TRANSACTIONS Before we get to the games, a few quick transaction updates: Wilkin Ramirez was sent to the disabled list for the Rochester Red Wings, and they activated Nate Hanson in his place. Pitcher Keaton Steele was also activated from the disabled list for Cedar Rapids, and started Monday's game for the Kernels. RED WINGS REPORT Gwinnett 6, Rochester 3 Box Score Lefthander Taylor Rogers kept the Rochester Red Wings in the game for most of it, but was unable to finish his day on high note. Rochester got out to an early 1-0 lead in the second, when Reynaldo Rodriguez led off the inning with his ninth home run of the season. In the top of the third the lead was handed to the Braves when they got to Rogers for three singles, resulting in two runs. The score remained that way through the sixth, with Rogers finishing that inning with only the two runs allowed on four hits and a walk, along with three strikeouts, but it unraveled for him in the seventh. Consecutive singles, a sac bunt, and intentional walk to load the bases started the inning, then two more singles and a sac fly brought in four runs to make it 6-1 before Cole Johnson came on in relief and escaped the jam. The Red Wings tried to get back in the game in the bottom half of the seventh, as Rodriguez and Bernier drew walks to put runners on with two outs, and Eric Farris delivered his first triple of the season to drive them in and make the score 6-3. Johnson recorded one out in the eighth before his own troubles brought in Mark Hamburger to wiggle out his jam with runners on second and third. Hamburger came back out for the ninth to pitch a scoreless inning, allowing a single and striking out two, but the Red Wings went down one-two-three in the ninth. Rochester was outhit 11-5 on the game, and didn’t get many chances as they were just 1-5 with runners in scoring position and left only five men on base. Rodriguez was the only Red Wings player with multiple hits, going 2-3 with two runs scored and the solo home run. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Mississippi 1, Chattanooga 4 Box Score The Lookouts were rained out yesterday, but continued their slight turnaround from a rough start to the month. After starting July 3-9 in their first twelve games, they are 5-1 over their last six. Starter David Hurlbut did much of the work for Chattanooga, pitching six shut out frames. He scattered five hits and two walks, while striking out two to improve to 6-4 on the season. He left the game with a 3-0 lead thanks to a single run in the fifth and two in the sixth from the home team. Travis Harrison scored the first run of the game in the fifth, when he led off the inning with a walk and scored on a Stuart Turner double. In the sixth, Max Kepler drew a walk and trotted home on Adam Brett Walker’s twenty-fifth home run of the season to make it 3-0. J.T. Chargois relieved Hurlbut for the seventh and pitched a scoreless inning, walking one and striking out one. Mississippi got their only run of the game in the eighth off reliever Alex Muren, when consecutive errors from Muren and Kennys Vargas allowed the leadoff man to circle home-to-home in just those two batters. Niko Goodrum added an insurance run in the eighth with a solo home run, his third of the season with the Lookouts and seventh total. Stuart Turner had two hits on the night including the RBI double. Walker had a typical day with the big home run, but also struck out twice. Kepler (1-3, R, BB) and Vargas (1-3, BB) each reached base twice in the game. MIRACLE MATTERS Jupiter 1, Fort Myers 2 Box Score It was a pitcher’s duel at Hammond Stadium on Monday night, with the Miracle’s Aaron Slegers facing off against the rehabbing Henderson Alvarez of the Miami Marlins. Slegers got the best of him with seven strong innings. He walked none and allowed just five hits and one run while striking out five. Fort Myers got to Alvarez in the third inning, and ended his night with two unearned runs after Alex Swim reached base on an error to start the inning. Swim moved to second on a passed ball, and a single from Mitch Garver and a walk to Brett Doe loaded the bases for consecutive sacrifice flies from Ryan Walker and T.J. White. Those two runs would be just enough, as the Hammerhead’s Drew Steckenrider held the Miracle lineup at bay for the rest of the game. Todd Van Steensel picked up his twelfth save with Fort Myers with two innings of relief to finish the game. He allowed one hit and struck out one. White was the only batter with multiple hits for the Miracle, going 2-3 with an RBI, and Swim added a double to the effort. The Miracle improved to 14-11 in the second half of the FSL season, and 52-43 overall. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 5, Quad Cities 14 Box Score Things got ugly early in this one for the Kernels and if it were a Minnesota Baseball Association Town Team game, would have ended a bit early in the eighth inning due to the mercy rule. Starting pitcher Keaton Steele, fresh off the DL, got through the first two innings unscathed, but recorded just one out in the third as the first four men reached base via single or walk, scoring the first two runs of the game in the process. They tacked on three more to Steele’s line before Jared Wilson escaped later with the bases still loaded. The River Bandits continued to fill the scoreboard against Wilson in the fourth (two runs), Michael Theofanopoulos in the fifth (four runs) and Cameron Booser in the sixth (one run), before they finally got a damage free and one-two-three seventh from Randy LeBlanc. He was not immune either though, as they’d get him for two more runs in the eighth, both unearned, as Kernels shortstop Sean Miller committed errors on consecutive ground balls to bring the score to 14-4 and the mercy conditions. Cedar Rapids scored their first run of the game in the sixth inning, as Zack Larson singled in Tanner English who had led off the inning with a walk. In the seventh, a triple from Austin Diemer and a double from Miller brought a little bit of life to the game, but three runs on the Kernels scoreboard weren’t much help. They added a fifth run in the top of the ninth, when English connected for his third home run of the season, making the final score of 14-5. Edgar Corcino (2-4, BB) and Miller (2-4, R, 2B) each had two hits to lead Cedar Rapids, and as team they were 1-9 with runners in scoring position and left eight men on base. E-TOWN E-NOTES Elizabethton 12, Burlington 1 Box Score The Elizabethton lineup scored early often and late often on Monday, leading to a 12-1 blowout of the Burlington Royals. They were aided by another stellar performance from starter Dereck Rodriguez, who continues to impress early in his transition to a pitcher with Elizabethton. The Twins racked up nineteen hits, and went a combined 8-21 with runners in scoring position. Though normally you might see fourteen men left on base as a bad thing, combined with the twelve runs on the scoreboard you can see how many chances they gave themselves. They jumped out to a 3-0 lead after the first inning, primarily due to the bat of newly signed first baseman Zander Wiel of Vanderbilt. His first professional home run was a two-run shot to make it 3-0 and Elizabethton would need no other insurance, though they took out a pretty large policy the rest of the game. They added two more in the second inning, and single runs in each of the third and fourth. They were held in check for the next two innings, before adding three to board in the seventh, and single runs again in each of the eighth and ninth. Rodriguez retired the first eleven Royals of the game before a single in the fourth with two outs finally got a runner on base for the home team. They got just one more single off Rodriguez in the fifth, and he faced the minimum over his final three innings, including retiring the final seven Royals he faced. He didn’t walk a single batter, and picked up three strikeouts along the way to improve his Appalachian League record to 3-0 in five starts. Alex Robinson came on in relief to finish the final two innings, allowing one run on one hit, a double in the ninth and two walks. Rainis Silva was 4-4 in the game and got on base in all five plate appearances for Elizabethton, scoring three runs in the process as he doubled and homered to drive in three. Kamran Young was 2-5 with a double, run scored and a walk. Leftfielder Chris Paul had three hits including a double, scored three runs and drove in one. Weil was 2-4 with three RBI’s and a walk to go along with his first pro home run. Travis Blankenhorn notched three hits and a walk, scoring one and driving in one. Ariel Montesino also joined the multiple-hit parade, going 2-4 with a walk, double, run scored and RBI. All nine starters for the Twins had at least one hit and Amaurys Minier was the only starter not to score a run. The win brought Elizabethton’s record to 12-13, and they shoot for .500 at home against the Princeton Rays tomorrow. GCL TWINS TAKES GCL Orioles 0, Elizabethton 1 Box Score Pitching was again the name of the game here, and Twins pitchers had a combined no-hitter through the first seven innings. Eduardo Del Rosario went the first five to get it started, walking two and striking out five. Max Cordy walked one and struck out two in the sixth, and Stephen Pryor struck out two in a perfect seventh. Next up in the eighth was John Curtiss, who got the first batter on a ground out to bring the team to 7.1 no-hit innings, but a walk to the next batter would be as far as he could bring them. The Orioles Jack Graham was up next, and was the first to get lucky, sneaking a ground ball through the right side for a base hit and putting a runner in scoring position. Obviously disappointed and perhaps angry the hit got through, Curtiss proceeded to strike out the next two hitters and keep the 1-0 Twins lead. The Twins got that run in the second inning, as singles from Jermaine Palacios, Ruar Verkerk and Kerby Camacho brought Palacios around to score with two outs. Johan Quezada was brought in for the save opportunity, and fared much like Curtiss. He got a groundout to start the inning, but then a walk and single put the game-tying runner on second base again. After a pinch-runner and pinch-hitter substitution, Quezada got a ground ball to third to end the game and pick up the save. Rosario improved to 2-0 in the Gulf Coast League in five starts and lowered his ERA to 1.96 with the five no-hit frames. On offense, the Twins got multiple hits from Luis Arraez (2-3, BB), Palacios (2-3, R) and Verkerk (2-3) and eight hits as a team. Because they were all singles however, they were just 1-5 with runners in scoring position and left only five men on base. TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS OF THE DAY Pitcher of the Day – Dereck Rodriguez, Elizabethton Twins (W, 7.0 IP, 2 H’s, 0 ER’s, 0 BB’s, 3 K’s) Hitter of the Day – Rainis Silva, Elizabethton Twins (4-4, 3 R’s, 2B, HR, BB, 2 RBI) TUESDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Gwinnet @ Rochester (6:05 PM CST) – RHP Tyler Duffey (4-4, 2.24 ERA) Montgomery @ Chattanooga (10:15 AM CST) – TBD Jupiter @ Fort Myers (6:05 PM CST) – RHP Chih-Wei Hu (5-2, 2.20 ERA) Wisconsin @ Cedar Rapids (6:35 PM CST) –RHP Felix Jorge (4-3, 2.06 ERA) Princeton @ Elizabethton (6:00 PM CST) – RHP Alex Tapia (1-1, 2.95 ERA) GCL Twins @ GCL Orioles (11:00 AM CST) – TBD Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss Monday’s games.
  6. The Twins had the day off on Monday as they travel down the West Coast of California from Oakland to Los Angeles to face the Angels of Anaheim on Tuesday. Kyle Gibson will make the start and look to get Minnesota back in the win column after the drubbing yesterday. But in the minors on Monday, it was a full slate of games with each affiliate in action. There were several strong starting pitching performances including a late bid for a combined-no-hitter, a big home run from a familiar name in these reports, and a couple of blowouts in the lower levels.To see if the Twins’ affiliates came out on top in those games, read on! TRANSACTIONS Before we get to the games, a few quick transaction updates: Wilkin Ramirez was sent to the disabled list for the Rochester Red Wings, and they activated Nate Hanson in his place. Pitcher Keaton Steele was also activated from the disabled list for Cedar Rapids, and started Monday's game for the Kernels. RED WINGS REPORT Gwinnett 6, Rochester 3 Box Score Lefthander Taylor Rogers kept the Rochester Red Wings in the game for most of it, but was unable to finish his day on high note. Rochester got out to an early 1-0 lead in the second, when Reynaldo Rodriguez led off the inning with his ninth home run of the season. In the top of the third the lead was handed to the Braves when they got to Rogers for three singles, resulting in two runs. The score remained that way through the sixth, with Rogers finishing that inning with only the two runs allowed on four hits and a walk, along with three strikeouts, but it unraveled for him in the seventh. Consecutive singles, a sac bunt, and intentional walk to load the bases started the inning, then two more singles and a sac fly brought in four runs to make it 6-1 before Cole Johnson came on in relief and escaped the jam. The Red Wings tried to get back in the game in the bottom half of the seventh, as Rodriguez and Bernier drew walks to put runners on with two outs, and Eric Farris delivered his first triple of the season to drive them in and make the score 6-3. Johnson recorded one out in the eighth before his own troubles brought in Mark Hamburger to wiggle out his jam with runners on second and third. Hamburger came back out for the ninth to pitch a scoreless inning, allowing a single and striking out two, but the Red Wings went down one-two-three in the ninth. Rochester was outhit 11-5 on the game, and didn’t get many chances as they were just 1-5 with runners in scoring position and left only five men on base. Rodriguez was the only Red Wings player with multiple hits, going 2-3 with two runs scored and the solo home run. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Mississippi 1, Chattanooga 4 Box Score The Lookouts were rained out yesterday, but continued their slight turnaround from a rough start to the month. After starting July 3-9 in their first twelve games, they are 5-1 over their last six. Starter David Hurlbut did much of the work for Chattanooga, pitching six shut out frames. He scattered five hits and two walks, while striking out two to improve to 6-4 on the season. He left the game with a 3-0 lead thanks to a single run in the fifth and two in the sixth from the home team. Travis Harrison scored the first run of the game in the fifth, when he led off the inning with a walk and scored on a Stuart Turner double. In the sixth, Max Kepler drew a walk and trotted home on Adam Brett Walker’s twenty-fifth home run of the season to make it 3-0. J.T. Chargois relieved Hurlbut for the seventh and pitched a scoreless inning, walking one and striking out one. Mississippi got their only run of the game in the eighth off reliever Alex Muren, when consecutive errors from Muren and Kennys Vargas allowed the leadoff man to circle home-to-home in just those two batters. Niko Goodrum added an insurance run in the eighth with a solo home run, his third of the season with the Lookouts and seventh total. Stuart Turner had two hits on the night including the RBI double. Walker had a typical day with the big home run, but also struck out twice. Kepler (1-3, R, BB) and Vargas (1-3, BB) each reached base twice in the game. MIRACLE MATTERS Jupiter 1, Fort Myers 2 Box Score It was a pitcher’s duel at Hammond Stadium on Monday night, with the Miracle’s Aaron Slegers facing off against the rehabbing Henderson Alvarez of the Miami Marlins. Slegers got the best of him with seven strong innings. He walked none and allowed just five hits and one run while striking out five. Fort Myers got to Alvarez in the third inning, and ended his night with two unearned runs after Alex Swim reached base on an error to start the inning. Swim moved to second on a passed ball, and a single from Mitch Garver and a walk to Brett Doe loaded the bases for consecutive sacrifice flies from Ryan Walker and T.J. White. Those two runs would be just enough, as the Hammerhead’s Drew Steckenrider held the Miracle lineup at bay for the rest of the game. Todd Van Steensel picked up his twelfth save with Fort Myers with two innings of relief to finish the game. He allowed one hit and struck out one. White was the only batter with multiple hits for the Miracle, going 2-3 with an RBI, and Swim added a double to the effort. The Miracle improved to 14-11 in the second half of the FSL season, and 52-43 overall. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 5, Quad Cities 14 Box Score Things got ugly early in this one for the Kernels and if it were a Minnesota Baseball Association Town Team game, would have ended a bit early in the eighth inning due to the mercy rule. Starting pitcher Keaton Steele, fresh off the DL, got through the first two innings unscathed, but recorded just one out in the third as the first four men reached base via single or walk, scoring the first two runs of the game in the process. They tacked on three more to Steele’s line before Jared Wilson escaped later with the bases still loaded. The River Bandits continued to fill the scoreboard against Wilson in the fourth (two runs), Michael Theofanopoulos in the fifth (four runs) and Cameron Booser in the sixth (one run), before they finally got a damage free and one-two-three seventh from Randy LeBlanc. He was not immune either though, as they’d get him for two more runs in the eighth, both unearned, as Kernels shortstop Sean Miller committed errors on consecutive ground balls to bring the score to 14-4 and the mercy conditions. Cedar Rapids scored their first run of the game in the sixth inning, as Zack Larson singled in Tanner English who had led off the inning with a walk. In the seventh, a triple from Austin Diemer and a double from Miller brought a little bit of life to the game, but three runs on the Kernels scoreboard weren’t much help. They added a fifth run in the top of the ninth, when English connected for his third home run of the season, making the final score of 14-5. Edgar Corcino (2-4, BB) and Miller (2-4, R, 2B) each had two hits to lead Cedar Rapids, and as team they were 1-9 with runners in scoring position and left eight men on base. E-TOWN E-NOTES Elizabethton 12, Burlington 1 Box Score The Elizabethton lineup scored early often and late often on Monday, leading to a 12-1 blowout of the Burlington Royals. They were aided by another stellar performance from starter Dereck Rodriguez, who continues to impress early in his transition to a pitcher with Elizabethton. The Twins racked up nineteen hits, and went a combined 8-21 with runners in scoring position. Though normally you might see fourteen men left on base as a bad thing, combined with the twelve runs on the scoreboard you can see how many chances they gave themselves. They jumped out to a 3-0 lead after the first inning, primarily due to the bat of newly signed first baseman Zander Wiel of Vanderbilt. His first professional home run was a two-run shot to make it 3-0 and Elizabethton would need no other insurance, though they took out a pretty large policy the rest of the game. They added two more in the second inning, and single runs in each of the third and fourth. They were held in check for the next two innings, before adding three to board in the seventh, and single runs again in each of the eighth and ninth. Rodriguez retired the first eleven Royals of the game before a single in the fourth with two outs finally got a runner on base for the home team. They got just one more single off Rodriguez in the fifth, and he faced the minimum over his final three innings, including retiring the final seven Royals he faced. He didn’t walk a single batter, and picked up three strikeouts along the way to improve his Appalachian League record to 3-0 in five starts. Alex Robinson came on in relief to finish the final two innings, allowing one run on one hit, a double in the ninth and two walks. Rainis Silva was 4-4 in the game and got on base in all five plate appearances for Elizabethton, scoring three runs in the process as he doubled and homered to drive in three. Kamran Young was 2-5 with a double, run scored and a walk. Leftfielder Chris Paul had three hits including a double, scored three runs and drove in one. Weil was 2-4 with three RBI’s and a walk to go along with his first pro home run. Travis Blankenhorn notched three hits and a walk, scoring one and driving in one. Ariel Montesino also joined the multiple-hit parade, going 2-4 with a walk, double, run scored and RBI. All nine starters for the Twins had at least one hit and Amaurys Minier was the only starter not to score a run. The win brought Elizabethton’s record to 12-13, and they shoot for .500 at home against the Princeton Rays tomorrow. GCL TWINS TAKES GCL Orioles 0, Elizabethton 1 Box Score Pitching was again the name of the game here, and Twins pitchers had a combined no-hitter through the first seven innings. Eduardo Del Rosario went the first five to get it started, walking two and striking out five. Max Cordy walked one and struck out two in the sixth, and Stephen Pryor struck out two in a perfect seventh. Next up in the eighth was John Curtiss, who got the first batter on a ground out to bring the team to 7.1 no-hit innings, but a walk to the next batter would be as far as he could bring them. The Orioles Jack Graham was up next, and was the first to get lucky, sneaking a ground ball through the right side for a base hit and putting a runner in scoring position. Obviously disappointed and perhaps angry the hit got through, Curtiss proceeded to strike out the next two hitters and keep the 1-0 Twins lead. The Twins got that run in the second inning, as singles from Jermaine Palacios, Ruar Verkerk and Kerby Camacho brought Palacios around to score with two outs. Johan Quezada was brought in for the save opportunity, and fared much like Curtiss. He got a groundout to start the inning, but then a walk and single put the game-tying runner on second base again. After a pinch-runner and pinch-hitter substitution, Quezada got a ground ball to third to end the game and pick up the save. Rosario improved to 2-0 in the Gulf Coast League in five starts and lowered his ERA to 1.96 with the five no-hit frames. On offense, the Twins got multiple hits from Luis Arraez (2-3, BB), Palacios (2-3, R) and Verkerk (2-3) and eight hits as a team. Because they were all singles however, they were just 1-5 with runners in scoring position and left only five men on base. TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS OF THE DAY Pitcher of the Day – Dereck Rodriguez, Elizabethton Twins (W, 7.0 IP, 2 H’s, 0 ER’s, 0 BB’s, 3 K’s) Hitter of the Day – Rainis Silva, Elizabethton Twins (4-4, 3 R’s, 2B, HR, BB, 2 RBI) TUESDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Gwinnet @ Rochester (6:05 PM CST) – RHP Tyler Duffey (4-4, 2.24 ERA) Montgomery @ Chattanooga (10:15 AM CST) – TBD Jupiter @ Fort Myers (6:05 PM CST) – RHP Chih-Wei Hu (5-2, 2.20 ERA) Wisconsin @ Cedar Rapids (6:35 PM CST) –RHP Felix Jorge (4-3, 2.06 ERA) Princeton @ Elizabethton (6:00 PM CST) – RHP Alex Tapia (1-1, 2.95 ERA) GCL Twins @ GCL Orioles (11:00 AM CST) – TBD Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss Monday’s games. Click here to view the article
  7. The Minnesota Twins’ bullpen has been a mess for the last six weeks. For the first six weeks of the season, guys like Blaine Boyer and Aaron Thompson were incredible, helping the Twins to a great month of May. They could do no wrong. Did the clock strike midnight on them? Did they get over-used, and over-exposed? Quite possibly. Following their walk-off win on Monday night, the Twins announced that Thompson had been optioned to AAA-Rochester and the contract of lefty Ryan O’Rourke had been selected. He was the first guy on my list of possible left-handed relievers called up to replace Thompson or Duensing. So yes, there could still be another left-hander added. And they could use right-handers.The Twins made one move on Monday night, but the bullpen is still full of questions. Today, I’m going to write about the internal options for the Twins bullpen should they go that direction. Left-Handed Relief Pitchers RYAN O’ROURKE O’Rourke, the 27-year-old from Massachusetts absolutely dominated same-sided hitters in 2014 at New Britain. He has done very well again in 2015 against left-handers in AAA. Right-handed bats have hit him very well, so O’Rourke should be considered a LOOGY. Of the 36 lefties he’s faced this year, he has struck out 20 of them. (O’Rourke was added to the 40-man roster on Monday night and will join the Twins at Target Field on Tuesday.) CALEB THIELBAR After spending all of 2014 and the final four months of 2013 in the Twins bullpen, Thielbar began the 2015 season in Rochester. He did come up for a six-game stint, but he is back with the Red Wings. He has struggled. In 26 innings, he has walked 17 and struck out just 13. Lefties have posted a .548 OPS on him this year. He remains on the 40-man roster. LOGAN DARNELL Darnell made four starts and three relief appearances for the Twins in 2014. This spring, he was moved to the bullpen exclusively. He has worked 30 innings over 23 appearances and has a 2.40 ERA despite a 1.57 WHIP. However, since May 19, he has given up an earned run in just one out of 11 outings including 23 strikeouts in 19 innings. Left-handers are hitting .306/.364/.306 (.670) against him. He is on the 40-man roster. Right-Handed Relief Pitchers AJ ACHTER Coming into Monday night, Achter had a 2.15 ERA and a 0.69 WHIP. In 37.2 innings, he had just ten walks and 38 strikeouts. He was 13 for 13 in save opportunities. On Monday night, he gave up four runs on five hits in one inning, but that was really his first clunker of the year. Achter has been the most consistent relief pitcher in the Twins minor leagues since moving to the bullpen in 2012. He pitched in 11 innings over seven games last year with the Twins. All he does is get people out. He remains on the 40-man roster. MICHAEL TONKIN If anyone would benefit from frequent flyer miles, it’s Tonkin. He has been up and down from Minnesota to Rochester a dozen times over the last three seasons. In 50 big league games, he has a 3.92 ERA and a 1.43 WHIP. He also has walked too many and given up the long ball too often. In 17.2 innings at Rochester this year, he has walked three and struck out 27. At some point, the Twins need to just let him pitch in the big leagues and see what they have. He will be out of options in 2016, so they do need to figure out if he can produce in the big leagues. He is on the 40-man roster. ALEX MEYER The progression of Meyer has been well documented here in the pages of Twins Daily. After just nine games in the bullpen, the Twins called him up. It didn’t go well. His struggles with control of the strike zone were apparent. He was sent back to Rochester to continue to work from the bullpen. As a starter, opponents had an OPS of .845. As a reliever, it’s been .672. It’s clear how much movement he gets from his fastball and slider. The Twins can be patient with him. He is on the 40-man roster. MARK HAMBURGER Hamburger was one of the bigger stories of spring training. He made it to the final week of big league camp before being sent to Rochester where he began the season as a starter. After four starts, he had an ERA of 6.30 in 20 innings. He has made 22 appearances out of the bullpen since then and has a 3.47 ERA. He is not on the 40-man roster. SCOTT ATCHISON Over the weekend, the Twins quietly signed 39-year-old Atchison a few days after he was released by Cleveland. He has been placed on the Chattanooga roster for now. He pitched in the big leagues in parts of nine seasons between 2004 and 2015. He is a good reminder of the nature of most relievers. In 2014 with Cleveland, he posted a 2.75 ERA and a 1.02 WHIP in 72 innings over 70 games. In 23 games (19.2 innings) this season he posted a 6.86 ERA and a 1.37 WHIP. Most likely, he has an opt-out date and will have to be called up or lost. He is not on the 40-man roster. LESTER OLIVEROS After missing all of 2013 because of Tommy John surgery, he returned and was cautiously used in 2014. He ended the season with the Twins. He wasn’t 100% in spring training and began the season in Rochester. He got off to a fast start, but his performance has leveled off. Overall, he has a 3.79 ERA and a 1.46 WHIP in 35.2 innings. He has walked just 13 and struck out 46. Opponents posted an OPS of .947 off of him in June, and he missed seven days because he was suspended for throwing at an opposing batter’s head. He is not on the 40-man roster. STEPHEN PRYOR Pryor came to the Twins from the Mariners last August in exchange for Kendrys Morales. He didn’t get a September call-up. He was invited to big league spring training. However, he has been on the disabled list all season. Over the weekend, he began a rehab stint in the GCL. He has made two appearances and would likely go to Rochester (or even Chattanooga) before going further. He is not on the 40-man roster. Starting Pitchers TAYLOR ROGERS Rogers has been a starter since he was drafted in the 11th round out of Kentucky. In four seasons, he is 33-21 with a 2.96 ERA. More relevant to the here and now, he is 7-5 with a 3.04 ERA and a 1.22 WHIP with Rochester. With so much starting pitching depth, the bullpen is an option for Rogers. A quick look at his AAA splits this year shows that he has been really dominant against lefties. They are hitting .178/.197/.186 (.383). He has given up no home runs, two walks and 36 strikeouts. Right-handers have hit .296/.352/.423 (.775) with six home runs, 25 walks and 41 strikeouts. He is not on the 40-man roster, but he will need to be added following the season, so if he continues to pitch well, he could find himself In the Twins bullpen. TYLER DUFFEY Duffey has been the one example of drafting a college reliever and trying to make him into a starter can be successful. He was a co-closer at Rice with JT Chargois. Since going pro, he has primarily started. He began this season with eight starts in Chattanooga and posted a 2.56 ERA and a 1.10 WHIP. He now has made eight starts in Rochester and has a 2.44 ERA and a 1.14 WHIP. He’s got good control, throws strikes, and has a good mix of pitches. However, as a reliever, he can hit 97 which would make his secondary pitches look even better. Again, due to the Twins starter depth, Duffey may need to come up as a reliever. Like Rogers, he was a spring training invite and would need to be added to the 40-man roster following the season. He could come up before that. JOSE BERRIOS Berrios was recently promoted from AA to AAA. After 15 starts, an 8-3 record, a 3.27 ERA and a 1.14 WHIP with the Lookouts, he moved up to Rochester where he made his first start on Friday. He is clearly the Twins top starting pitcher prospect. He has great stuff, fastball, change-up and breaking pitches. He could come in out of the bullpen (which would be short-term) if the Twins remain in the pennant race. A September call up may be less likely as he doesn’t need to be added to the 40-man roster until after the 2016 season. So there you have it, the internal options that are there should the Twins decide to make more changes in the bullpen without trading away prospects and talent. We’ll be back later in the week to talk more about the Twins bullpen. Click here to view the article
  8. The Twins made one move on Monday night, but the bullpen is still full of questions. Today, I’m going to write about the internal options for the Twins bullpen should they go that direction. Left-Handed Relief Pitchers RYAN O’ROURKE O’Rourke, the 27-year-old from Massachusetts absolutely dominated same-sided hitters in 2014 at New Britain. He has done very well again in 2015 against left-handers in AAA. Right-handed bats have hit him very well, so O’Rourke should be considered a LOOGY. Of the 36 lefties he’s faced this year, he has struck out 20 of them. (O’Rourke was added to the 40-man roster on Monday night and will join the Twins at Target Field on Tuesday.) CALEB THIELBAR After spending all of 2014 and the final four months of 2013 in the Twins bullpen, Thielbar began the 2015 season in Rochester. He did come up for a six-game stint, but he is back with the Red Wings. He has struggled. In 26 innings, he has walked 17 and struck out just 13. Lefties have posted a .548 OPS on him this year. He remains on the 40-man roster. LOGAN DARNELL Darnell made four starts and three relief appearances for the Twins in 2014. This spring, he was moved to the bullpen exclusively. He has worked 30 innings over 23 appearances and has a 2.40 ERA despite a 1.57 WHIP. However, since May 19, he has given up an earned run in just one out of 11 outings including 23 strikeouts in 19 innings. Left-handers are hitting .306/.364/.306 (.670) against him. He is on the 40-man roster. Right-Handed Relief Pitchers AJ ACHTER Coming into Monday night, Achter had a 2.15 ERA and a 0.69 WHIP. In 37.2 innings, he had just ten walks and 38 strikeouts. He was 13 for 13 in save opportunities. On Monday night, he gave up four runs on five hits in one inning, but that was really his first clunker of the year. Achter has been the most consistent relief pitcher in the Twins minor leagues since moving to the bullpen in 2012. He pitched in 11 innings over seven games last year with the Twins. All he does is get people out. He remains on the 40-man roster. MICHAEL TONKIN If anyone would benefit from frequent flyer miles, it’s Tonkin. He has been up and down from Minnesota to Rochester a dozen times over the last three seasons. In 50 big league games, he has a 3.92 ERA and a 1.43 WHIP. He also has walked too many and given up the long ball too often. In 17.2 innings at Rochester this year, he has walked three and struck out 27. At some point, the Twins need to just let him pitch in the big leagues and see what they have. He will be out of options in 2016, so they do need to figure out if he can produce in the big leagues. He is on the 40-man roster. ALEX MEYER The progression of Meyer has been well documented here in the pages of Twins Daily. After just nine games in the bullpen, the Twins called him up. It didn’t go well. His struggles with control of the strike zone were apparent. He was sent back to Rochester to continue to work from the bullpen. As a starter, opponents had an OPS of .845. As a reliever, it’s been .672. It’s clear how much movement he gets from his fastball and slider. The Twins can be patient with him. He is on the 40-man roster. MARK HAMBURGER Hamburger was one of the bigger stories of spring training. He made it to the final week of big league camp before being sent to Rochester where he began the season as a starter. After four starts, he had an ERA of 6.30 in 20 innings. He has made 22 appearances out of the bullpen since then and has a 3.47 ERA. He is not on the 40-man roster. SCOTT ATCHISON Over the weekend, the Twins quietly signed 39-year-old Atchison a few days after he was released by Cleveland. He has been placed on the Chattanooga roster for now. He pitched in the big leagues in parts of nine seasons between 2004 and 2015. He is a good reminder of the nature of most relievers. In 2014 with Cleveland, he posted a 2.75 ERA and a 1.02 WHIP in 72 innings over 70 games. In 23 games (19.2 innings) this season he posted a 6.86 ERA and a 1.37 WHIP. Most likely, he has an opt-out date and will have to be called up or lost. He is not on the 40-man roster. LESTER OLIVEROS After missing all of 2013 because of Tommy John surgery, he returned and was cautiously used in 2014. He ended the season with the Twins. He wasn’t 100% in spring training and began the season in Rochester. He got off to a fast start, but his performance has leveled off. Overall, he has a 3.79 ERA and a 1.46 WHIP in 35.2 innings. He has walked just 13 and struck out 46. Opponents posted an OPS of .947 off of him in June, and he missed seven days because he was suspended for throwing at an opposing batter’s head. He is not on the 40-man roster. STEPHEN PRYOR Pryor came to the Twins from the Mariners last August in exchange for Kendrys Morales. He didn’t get a September call-up. He was invited to big league spring training. However, he has been on the disabled list all season. Over the weekend, he began a rehab stint in the GCL. He has made two appearances and would likely go to Rochester (or even Chattanooga) before going further. He is not on the 40-man roster. Starting Pitchers TAYLOR ROGERS Rogers has been a starter since he was drafted in the 11th round out of Kentucky. In four seasons, he is 33-21 with a 2.96 ERA. More relevant to the here and now, he is 7-5 with a 3.04 ERA and a 1.22 WHIP with Rochester. With so much starting pitching depth, the bullpen is an option for Rogers. A quick look at his AAA splits this year shows that he has been really dominant against lefties. They are hitting .178/.197/.186 (.383). He has given up no home runs, two walks and 36 strikeouts. Right-handers have hit .296/.352/.423 (.775) with six home runs, 25 walks and 41 strikeouts. He is not on the 40-man roster, but he will need to be added following the season, so if he continues to pitch well, he could find himself In the Twins bullpen. TYLER DUFFEY Duffey has been the one example of drafting a college reliever and trying to make him into a starter can be successful. He was a co-closer at Rice with JT Chargois. Since going pro, he has primarily started. He began this season with eight starts in Chattanooga and posted a 2.56 ERA and a 1.10 WHIP. He now has made eight starts in Rochester and has a 2.44 ERA and a 1.14 WHIP. He’s got good control, throws strikes, and has a good mix of pitches. However, as a reliever, he can hit 97 which would make his secondary pitches look even better. Again, due to the Twins starter depth, Duffey may need to come up as a reliever. Like Rogers, he was a spring training invite and would need to be added to the 40-man roster following the season. He could come up before that. JOSE BERRIOS Berrios was recently promoted from AA to AAA. After 15 starts, an 8-3 record, a 3.27 ERA and a 1.14 WHIP with the Lookouts, he moved up to Rochester where he made his first start on Friday. He is clearly the Twins top starting pitcher prospect. He has great stuff, fastball, change-up and breaking pitches. He could come in out of the bullpen (which would be short-term) if the Twins remain in the pennant race. A September call up may be less likely as he doesn’t need to be added to the 40-man roster until after the 2016 season. So there you have it, the internal options that are there should the Twins decide to make more changes in the bullpen without trading away prospects and talent. We’ll be back later in the week to talk more about the Twins bullpen.
  9. We begin with a few players deserving of mention. Chattanooga RHP JO Berrios – 5 GS, 2-1, 3.62 ERA, 0.99 WHIP, 27.1 IP, 20 H, 7 BB, 12 K Chattanooga RHP Alex Wimmers – 5 GS, 3-1, 2.97 ERA, 1.25 WHIP, 30.1 IP, 26 H, 12 BB, 27 K Ft. Myers RHP Ryan Eades – 4 GS, 1-0, 2.70 ERA, 1.24 WHIP, 26.2 IP, 28 H, 5 BB, 21 K Ft. Myers LHP Mat Batts – 5 GS, 2-2, 2.63 ERA, 1.17 WHIP, 27.1 IP, 29 H, 3 BB, 25 K TOP 5 STARTING PITCHERS IN JUNE Number 5 – Ft. Myers – RHP Aaron Slegers - 4 GS, 1-1, 2.13 ERA, 1.11 WHIP, 25.1 IP, 21 H, 7 BB, 20 K The 6'-10" Slegers was the Twins fifth-round pick in 2013 out of the University of Indiana where he had been named the Big 10 Pitcher of the Year that season. He went 7-7 with a 4.54 ERA in 20 starts for Cedar Rapids a year ago before ending his season with three starts with the Miracle. In 14 starts with the Miracle this year, he is 5-4 with a 3.21 ERA and a 1.14 WHIP in 84 innings. He has terrific control. His 1.8 BB/9 this year is actually higher than his overall pro average of 1.6 BB/9. Slegers was primed to be high on the May starting pitcher ranking until he had a big clunker, but he has responded from his one bad start with a strong June. He doesn’t throw hard, sitting between 90 and 92, but he has a good slider. Number 4 – Cedar Rapids – RHP Felix Jorge - 4 GS, 0-1, 2.28 ERA, 0.87 WHIP, 27.2 IP, 17 H, 7 BB, 18 K Jorge was signed from the Dominican Republic in 2010 for $250,000. He has pitched well at each level. He began the 2014 season in Cedar Rapids but really struggled. He went down to Elizabethton and was named the Appy League Pitcher of the Year. In his second shot in the Midwest League this spring, he has been terrific. He has made 13 starts and is 3-3 with a 2.20 ERA and a 0.90 WHIP. In his second start of this season, he struck out nine in five innings. He has not pitched less than six innings in any other start this year. He has been very consistent. Still just 21-years-old, Jorge has certainly reclaimed a place among Twins top starting pitching prospects. Number 3 – Chattanooga/Rochester – RHP Greg Peavey - 5 GS, 2-2, 2.56 ERA, 0.85 WHIP, 31.2 IP, 24 H, 3 BB, 17 K Greg Peavey was the Twins minor league Rule 5 selection in December from the Mets organization. He began the season in AA with the Lookouts and it wasn’t pretty. In his first five starts, he went just 22.1 innings and posted a 10.48 ERA and a 2.24 WHIP. Doug Mientkiewicz stuck by him. He made eight more starts for the Lookouts and in that time, he went 5-1 with a 2.12 ERA. In those 51 innings, he gave up just 37 hits and walked eight. Following that run, he was promoted to Rochester where he made two more starts and gave up a combined six runs in 11.1 innings. The Scott Boras client was the sixth-round pick of the Mets in 2010. He did a Q&A with Twins Daily shortly after the Rule 5 draft. Number 2 – Rochester – RHP Tyler Duffey - 5 GS, 3-2, 2.45 ERA, 1.09 WHIP, 33.0 IP, 31 H, 5 BB, 29 K Duffey was the Twins fifth-round draft pick in 2012 out of Rice University. He was the co-closer there with JT Chargois. Since signing with the Twins, he has worked primarily as a starter. In 2014, he made 25 starts at three different levels. He was invited to big league spring training, but he was sent back to AA – this time to Chattanooga – to start the season. He responded well. He made eight starts with the Lookouts and went 2-2 with a 2.56 ERA and a 1.10 WHIP. In mid-May, he returned to Rochester. On June 11, he made his second straight start against Scranton/Wilkes Barre and gave up seven runs. He pitched against them six days later and struck out nine over eight shutout innings. In two starts since then, he has not given up an earned run. In his seven starts with Rochester, he is 3-4 with a 2.82 ERA and a 1.14 WHIP. Duffey should debut with the Twins in 2015. If not, he’s almost a given to be added to the 40-man roster following the season. (Read the Get To Know Tyler Duffey story from Spring Training.) And the Twins Minor League Starting Pitcher of the Month is: Rochester Red Wings – LHP Taylor Rogers – 6 G, 5 GS, 3-1, 2.40 ERA, 1.04 WHIP, 41.1 IP, 36 H, 7 BB, 24 K Taylor Rogers was the Twins 11th round pick in 2012 out of the University of Kentucky. He split time that season between Elizabethton and Beloit and posted a 2.27 ERA in 63.1 innings after a solid college season. He began the 2013 season in Cedar Rapids but made just three starts before being promoted to Ft. Myers. There, he went 11-6 with a 2.55 ERA and was named the 2013 Twins Daily Minor League Starting Pitcher of the Year. In 2014, he moved up to AA New Britain. After a slow start in the first month, Rogers ended the season 11-6 with a 3.29 ERA. He finished third in the 2014 Twins Daily Minor League Starting Pitcher of the Year. He went to the Arizona Fall League where he was hit by a line drive in his first outing. It cost him most of that season, though he did return late in the Salt River Rafters’ championship run. (His twin brother Tyler represented the Giants organization in the AFL as well.) The success earned him a spring training invite this year, an experience he enjoyed. “The spring training invite was great. I was honored to be there and just wanted to watch and see how everyone prepared for their season.” He began this season in the rotation for the Rochester Red Wings. In all, he is 7-4 with a 2.96 ERA and a 1.21 WHIP. He has already thrown 103.1 innings. He has walked just 27 and struck out 71. He has made 15 starts, and he is credited with one relief appearance. Actually, he “started” a rain-suspended game from earlier in the season and worked the remaining seven innings. The transition to AAA has gone well for Rogers and yet it hasn’t been easy. “I think the biggest difference is the quality of the lineups. Everybody can hit and pitch. It's so much fun to compete out there every day.” Rogers has a strong three-pitch mix of fastball, curveball and change up, though he’s continuing to work on the latter. “I’ve been working on using the change up more often and effectively. It's a work in progress so far.” His out pitch? “Usually my curve is more of the out pitch, but situation dependent, it could be anything well executed.” The Twins already have a difficult decision to make. Whose spot in the rotation will Ervin Santana take? Having strong starting pitching depth is unusual in the Twins recent history. Consider there are six or seven options for five starting rotation spots right now, and that doesn’t factor in Taylor Rogers, Tyler Duffey, Greg Peavey and Jose Berrios who are all now in the Rochester rotation. The bullpen is certainly an option for Rogers as Twins left-handed relievers in the big leagues have been struggling mightily of late. Rogers has dominated left-handed batters in AAA to the tune of a .174/.193/.183 (.376) slash line, including two walks against 35 lefty at-bats. He would not be against a call-up to the Twins bullpen. “I think having depth in the organization is a strength of ours. And, anyone will tell you a lot of people are deserving of a call. It will happen when it’s supposed to happen.” Rogers can only control himself and he reminds himself, “I just have to stay in the moment.” One thing is for certain, Taylor Rogers had terrific 2013 and 2014 seasons, and he’s impressing with his strong first half in AAA. In fact, today he was named to the International League All-Star roster. Rogers could be a call up during the 2014 season. If not, he’s a guarantee to be added to the team’s 40-man roster following the season. Please feel free to post your comments on Taylor Rogers, Tyler Duffey and the rest of the Twins minor league starting pitchers who pitched well in June. How do you feel about the rankings? We’ll be back tomorrow with the Minor League Hitter of the Month of June.
  10. On Sunday, Byron Buxton made his major league debut, the goal of every single minor league player. There were a lot of strong hitting performances on the day, lots of three-hit games. A few of the Twins top pitching prospects were on the mound Sunday. Two of them didn’t get through the fourth inning, but one had a tremendous start. To find out who performed well, you’ll just have to keep reading.RED WINGS REPORT Rochester 2, Scranton/Wilkes Barre 1 Box Score Taylor Rogers has continued to move up the farm system at a steady pace. At each level, he has had a couple of clunkers, but for the most part, he has been very good for the Red Wings. On Sunday, he posted one of his best starts of the year. The southpaw went eight innings. He gave up one run on six hits. He walked none and struck out eight. He improved to 6-4 and reduced his ERA to 3.23. He needed just 92 pitches and 63 of them were strikes. AJ Achter came on for the ninth and retired the three batters he faced to record his tenth save of the season. The Red Wings needed that performance as the offense didn’t provide much support. They had just four hits in the game. The big hit came from Danny Ortiz in the fourth inning. He drove in two runs with his 17th double of the season. Argenis Diaz recorded his sixth double. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 4, Birmingham 3 Box Score There was a scary moment in the bottom of the third inning. JO Berrios started for the Lookouts and had given up just one hit over three shutout innings. On the final out of that third inning, he took a liner to the shin. He made the play, but he left the game with a leg contusion. Reports following the game indicated that he was fine and wouldn’t miss any time. DJ Baxendale went to the mound and threw the next two innings. He gave up one run on one hit and two walks, though he did strike out five. Madison Boer gave up two unearned runs on two hits and two walks in 1.2 innings. He struck out two. Jake Reed got the next four outs in order. JT Chargois recorded his third save since his call up to Chattanooga. He struck out two in an inning. Mike Gonzales went 2-4, but Max Kepler had the big hit. Kepler went 1-2 with two walks and a two-run homer. It was his third homer of the year. Jorge Polanco led off and went 0-1, but he walked three times. Niko Goodrum made the start in center field for the Lookouts. MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers 5, Bradenton 6 (11 innings) Box Score Yet another extra innings game for the Miracle, and this one unfortunately ended in a loss. Stephen Gonsalves had a rough one in his second FSL start. In just 3.2 innings, he gave up three runs on five hits. He walked three and struck out two. Before he left the game, he issued two straight bases-loaded walks. He was replaced by Matt Summers who gave up two runs (one earned) on three hits. He walked one and struck out one. Corey Williams came on and got the next seven outs without allowing a run. Todd Van Steensel struck out two over his two scoreless innings. Luke Westphal gave up a run on three hits in the bottom of the 11th to take the loss. Mitch Garver led the offense. He went 3-4 with his ninth double. Alex Swim went 2-5. Marcus Knecht’s tenth double drove in two runs. Bryan Haar added a double, his thirteenth. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 8, Lansing 3 Box Score Good things come in threes, right? Well, four Kernels hitters had three hits in this game to help the team to a nice win on Sunday afternoon. Sam Gibbons got the start and got through seven innings. He gave up two runs on four hits and two walks. Mike Theofanopoulos gave up a run in his inning. He struck out two. Trevor Hildenberger struck out one in a perfect inning. Leadoff man Edgar Corcino went 3-4. Alex Real went 3-3 with a walk and his third double. Rafael Valera was 3-3 with a walk. Tanner English led the way. He went 3-4 with his sixth triple and his second home run. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Taylor Rogers, Rochester Red Wings Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Tanner English, Cedar Rapids Kernels MONDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Rochester – No Game Scheduled Chattanooga @ Birmingham (11:30 am CST) – RHP Greg Peavey Daytona @ Ft. Myers (6:05 CST) – LHP Mat Batts Lansing @ Cedar Rapids (12:05 CST) – RHP Jared Wilson Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss the Sunday games. Click here to view the article
  11. RED WINGS REPORT Rochester 2, Scranton/Wilkes Barre 1 Box Score Taylor Rogers has continued to move up the farm system at a steady pace. At each level, he has had a couple of clunkers, but for the most part, he has been very good for the Red Wings. On Sunday, he posted one of his best starts of the year. The southpaw went eight innings. He gave up one run on six hits. He walked none and struck out eight. He improved to 6-4 and reduced his ERA to 3.23. He needed just 92 pitches and 63 of them were strikes. AJ Achter came on for the ninth and retired the three batters he faced to record his tenth save of the season. The Red Wings needed that performance as the offense didn’t provide much support. They had just four hits in the game. The big hit came from Danny Ortiz in the fourth inning. He drove in two runs with his 17th double of the season. Argenis Diaz recorded his sixth double. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 4, Birmingham 3 Box Score There was a scary moment in the bottom of the third inning. JO Berrios started for the Lookouts and had given up just one hit over three shutout innings. On the final out of that third inning, he took a liner to the shin. He made the play, but he left the game with a leg contusion. Reports following the game indicated that he was fine and wouldn’t miss any time. DJ Baxendale went to the mound and threw the next two innings. He gave up one run on one hit and two walks, though he did strike out five. Madison Boer gave up two unearned runs on two hits and two walks in 1.2 innings. He struck out two. Jake Reed got the next four outs in order. JT Chargois recorded his third save since his call up to Chattanooga. He struck out two in an inning. Mike Gonzales went 2-4, but Max Kepler had the big hit. Kepler went 1-2 with two walks and a two-run homer. It was his third homer of the year. Jorge Polanco led off and went 0-1, but he walked three times. Niko Goodrum made the start in center field for the Lookouts. MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers 5, Bradenton 6 (11 innings) Box Score Yet another extra innings game for the Miracle, and this one unfortunately ended in a loss. Stephen Gonsalves had a rough one in his second FSL start. In just 3.2 innings, he gave up three runs on five hits. He walked three and struck out two. Before he left the game, he issued two straight bases-loaded walks. He was replaced by Matt Summers who gave up two runs (one earned) on three hits. He walked one and struck out one. Corey Williams came on and got the next seven outs without allowing a run. Todd Van Steensel struck out two over his two scoreless innings. Luke Westphal gave up a run on three hits in the bottom of the 11th to take the loss. Mitch Garver led the offense. He went 3-4 with his ninth double. Alex Swim went 2-5. Marcus Knecht’s tenth double drove in two runs. Bryan Haar added a double, his thirteenth. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 8, Lansing 3 Box Score Good things come in threes, right? Well, four Kernels hitters had three hits in this game to help the team to a nice win on Sunday afternoon. Sam Gibbons got the start and got through seven innings. He gave up two runs on four hits and two walks. Mike Theofanopoulos gave up a run in his inning. He struck out two. Trevor Hildenberger struck out one in a perfect inning. Leadoff man Edgar Corcino went 3-4. Alex Real went 3-3 with a walk and his third double. Rafael Valera was 3-3 with a walk. Tanner English led the way. He went 3-4 with his sixth triple and his second home run. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Taylor Rogers, Rochester Red Wings Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Tanner English, Cedar Rapids Kernels MONDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Rochester – No Game Scheduled Chattanooga @ Birmingham (11:30 am CST) – RHP Greg Peavey Daytona @ Ft. Myers (6:05 CST) – LHP Mat Batts Lansing @ Cedar Rapids (12:05 CST) – RHP Jared Wilson Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss the Sunday games.
  12. RED WINGS REPORT Pawtucket Paw Sox @ Rochester Box Score Taylor Rogers pitched an eight-inning gem on Thursday night in front of a crowd of 4,196 at Frontier Field. Rogers earned his fifth win of the year with eight innings of six hit baseball. He walked one, struck out three, and gave up just a single run. His season ERA now sits just above three at 3.09. Michael Tonkin, fresh from an MLB stint early in the week, picked up his sixth save with a perfect ninth, including a strike out. The Red Wings struck out twelve times against Paw Sox pitching, led by a miserable 0-3 performance from Kennys Vargas that included three strikeouts. Recently demoted Oswaldo Arcia chipped in a pair of strikeouts as well en route to his 0-4 night. Josmil Pinto, the other bat Twins fans have been clamoring for, was 0-4 with two strikeouts of his own as well. What a night! IT wasn't all bad, James Beresford and Eric Fryer (hitting eighth and ninth respectively) were both 2-3 with a run scored. I have no idea how the Red Wings scored any runs, but they clustered their hits together when it mattered to pull out a victory. Final: Pawtucket 1, Red Wings 4 LOOKOUTS LOOK-IN Chattanooga @ Tennessee Smokies Box Score The Lookouts committed more errors (2) than runs scored (1) on Thursday night. They also managed to strike out nine times and walked just once, and earned just four walks. No Lookouts hitter had multiple hits. Byron Buxton continued to slide with an 0-4 night with a pair of strikeouts. Adam Brett Walker was 0-4 with two strikeouts of his own as well. Max Kepler was also 0-4, but managed just one strike- out. The lone bright spot in the Lookouts lineup came from Mike Gonzales who was 1-3 with a solo home run. On the bump, Chattanooga pitchers struck out only one Tennessee hitter over eight innings. Lookouts starter Greg Peavey pitched into the seventh, but was pulled with one out. He was charged with three runs (two earned), he did not walk a batter, and had the Lookouts' lone strikeout. Zack Jones finished the seventh for Chattanooga, but gave up a pair of runs. Time Shibuya pitched the eighth and gave up a run as well. Not much doing in a pretty quick game at Smokies Park, finished in 2:13. Final Score: Chattanooga 1, Tennessee 6 MIRACLE MATTERS Bradenton Marauders @ Fort Myers Box Score Three Miracle hitters had a multi-hit night, and the Miracle picked up ten hits as a team, but couldn't put the bat on the ball when it mattered, going just 3-13 with runners in scoring position. Bradenton, on the other hand, was 8-20 with runners in scoring position and seemed like they were able to score at will, picking up runs in six different innings. Engelb Vielma, hitting leadoff, was 2-5 with a double. Mitch Garver was 2-3 with a walk and a run scored, and Marcus Knecht was 2-4 with a double, a run scored and two RBIs to pace with Miracle. Kohl Stewart dropped to 1-4 with a five inning, ten hit, five run (four earned) performance. He walked two and struck out three. His ERA this year is 3.92. Stewart gave way to Brian Gilbert, who pitched two effective innings before turning the ball over to Corey Williams in the eighth, who gave up a run, and Luke Westphal in the ninth, who gave up another. Final score: Bradenton 7, Fort Myers 3 KERNELS KORNER Cedar Rapids @ South Bend Cubs Box Score The Kernels fell short of a come from behind victory on Thursday night in South Bend, Indiana. Starting pitcher Dereck Rodriguez, making his Midwest League debut, was tagged for four runs in the first inning, but the Kernels rallied and were within striking distance most of the evening. Rodriguez lasted just three innings, he struck out one, walked four, and gave up those four early runs. Michael Theofanopoulos also threw three innings. He fared slightly better than Rodriguez, striking out four, but giving up a pair of earned runs on four hits. Michael Caderoth pitched a clean seventh and Cameron Booser gave up a hit and recorded a strike out in the eighth. Booser's ERA is down to 0.74 after Thursday's game. The Kernels had just seven hits, but three of them went for extra bases, including a pair of doubles from Kernels' cleanup hitter Jorge Fernandez. Fernandez was 2-4 with two doubles, a run scored and a strike out. Nick Gordon had a pair of hits as well, going 2-3 with a run scored and a stolen base (his 13th of the year). The Kernels squandered a few opportunities to score runs, going just 1-8 with runners in scoring position, Final Score: Cedar Rapids 4, South Bend 6 TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS OF THE DAY Hitter of the Day - Jorge Fernandez, Cedar Rapids Kernels Pitcher of the Day - Taylor Rogers, Rochester Red Wings FRIDAY'S PROBABLES Pawtucket @ Rochester - Zeke Spurill vs. Pat Dean (5-3, 2.36) Chattanooga @ Tennessee - Brett Lee (AA Debut) vs. Ivan Pineyro Fort Myers @ Bradenton - Chih-Wei Hu (2-0, 2.29) vs. Jayson Aquino Cedar Rapids @ South Bend - Keaton Steele (2-0, 2.70) vs. Jake Stinnett
  13. Ricky Nolasco could not throw 100% in his pre-game bullpen and was placed on the disabled list, clearing the way for Tommy Milone to start Thursday's game against the Red Sox. The Twins won the game late, thanks in part to a Joe Mauer bunt (of course), and managed to escape Boston with a split. Here is a look at what happened throughout the Minnesota Twins minor league system on Thursday, June 4.RED WINGS REPORT Pawtucket Paw Sox @ Rochester Box Score Taylor Rogers pitched an eight-inning gem on Thursday night in front of a crowd of 4,196 at Frontier Field. Rogers earned his fifth win of the year with eight innings of six hit baseball. He walked one, struck out three, and gave up just a single run. His season ERA now sits just above three at 3.09. Michael Tonkin, fresh from an MLB stint early in the week, picked up his sixth save with a perfect ninth, including a strike out. The Red Wings struck out twelve times against Paw Sox pitching, led by a miserable 0-3 performance from Kennys Vargas that included three strikeouts. Recently demoted Oswaldo Arcia chipped in a pair of strikeouts as well en route to his 0-4 night. Josmil Pinto, the other bat Twins fans have been clamoring for, was 0-4 with two strikeouts of his own as well. What a night! IT wasn't all bad, James Beresford and Eric Fryer (hitting eighth and ninth respectively) were both 2-3 with a run scored. I have no idea how the Red Wings scored any runs, but they clustered their hits together when it mattered to pull out a victory. Final: Pawtucket 1, Red Wings 4 LOOKOUTS LOOK-IN Chattanooga @ Tennessee Smokies Box Score The Lookouts committed more errors (2) than runs scored (1) on Thursday night. They also managed to strike out nine times and walked just once, and earned just four walks. No Lookouts hitter had multiple hits. Byron Buxton continued to slide with an 0-4 night with a pair of strikeouts. Adam Brett Walker was 0-4 with two strikeouts of his own as well. Max Kepler was also 0-4, but managed just one strike- out. The lone bright spot in the Lookouts lineup came from Mike Gonzales who was 1-3 with a solo home run. On the bump, Chattanooga pitchers struck out only one Tennessee hitter over eight innings. Lookouts starter Greg Peavey pitched into the seventh, but was pulled with one out. He was charged with three runs (two earned), he did not walk a batter, and had the Lookouts' lone strikeout. Zack Jones finished the seventh for Chattanooga, but gave up a pair of runs. Time Shibuya pitched the eighth and gave up a run as well. Not much doing in a pretty quick game at Smokies Park, finished in 2:13. Final Score: Chattanooga 1, Tennessee 6 MIRACLE MATTERS Bradenton Marauders @ Fort Myers Box Score Three Miracle hitters had a multi-hit night, and the Miracle picked up ten hits as a team, but couldn't put the bat on the ball when it mattered, going just 3-13 with runners in scoring position. Bradenton, on the other hand, was 8-20 with runners in scoring position and seemed like they were able to score at will, picking up runs in six different innings. Engelb Vielma, hitting leadoff, was 2-5 with a double. Mitch Garver was 2-3 with a walk and a run scored, and Marcus Knecht was 2-4 with a double, a run scored and two RBIs to pace with Miracle. Kohl Stewart dropped to 1-4 with a five inning, ten hit, five run (four earned) performance. He walked two and struck out three. His ERA this year is 3.92. Stewart gave way to Brian Gilbert, who pitched two effective innings before turning the ball over to Corey Williams in the eighth, who gave up a run, and Luke Westphal in the ninth, who gave up another. Final score: Bradenton 7, Fort Myers 3 KERNELS KORNER Cedar Rapids @ South Bend Cubs Box Score The Kernels fell short of a come from behind victory on Thursday night in South Bend, Indiana. Starting pitcher Dereck Rodriguez, making his Midwest League debut, was tagged for four runs in the first inning, but the Kernels rallied and were within striking distance most of the evening. Rodriguez lasted just three innings, he struck out one, walked four, and gave up those four early runs. Michael Theofanopoulos also threw three innings. He fared slightly better than Rodriguez, striking out four, but giving up a pair of earned runs on four hits. Michael Caderoth pitched a clean seventh and Cameron Booser gave up a hit and recorded a strike out in the eighth. Booser's ERA is down to 0.74 after Thursday's game. The Kernels had just seven hits, but three of them went for extra bases, including a pair of doubles from Kernels' cleanup hitter Jorge Fernandez. Fernandez was 2-4 with two doubles, a run scored and a strike out. Nick Gordon had a pair of hits as well, going 2-3 with a run scored and a stolen base (his 13th of the year). The Kernels squandered a few opportunities to score runs, going just 1-8 with runners in scoring position, Final Score: Cedar Rapids 4, South Bend 6 TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS OF THE DAY Hitter of the Day - Jorge Fernandez, Cedar Rapids Kernels Pitcher of the Day - Taylor Rogers, Rochester Red Wings FRIDAY'S PROBABLES Pawtucket @ Rochester - Zeke Spurill vs. Pat Dean (5-3, 2.36) Chattanooga @ Tennessee - Brett Lee (AA Debut) vs. Ivan Pineyro Fort Myers @ Bradenton - Chih-Wei Hu (2-0, 2.29) vs. Jayson Aquino Cedar Rapids @ South Bend - Keaton Steele (2-0, 2.70) vs. Jake Stinnett Click here to view the article
  14. Ricky Nolasco could not throw 100% in his pre-game bullpen and was placed on the Disabled List, clearing the way for Tommy Milone to start Thursday's game against the Red Sox. The Twins won the game late, thanks in part to a Joe Mauer bunt (of course), and managed to escape Boston with a split. RED WINGS REPORT Pawtucket Paw Sox @ Rochester Box Score Taylor Rogers pitched an eight inning gem on Thursday night in front of a crowd of 4,196 at Frontier Field. Rogers earned his fifth win of the year with eight innings of six hit baseball. He walked one, struck out three, and gave up just a single run. His season ERA now sits just above three at 3.09. Michael Tonkin, fresh from a MLB stint early in the week, picked up his sixth save with a perfect ninth, including a strike out. The Red Wings struck out twelve times against Paw Sox pitching, led by a miserable 0-3 performance from Kennys Vargas that included three strike outs. Recently demoted Oswaldo Arcia chipped in a pair of strike outs as well enroute to his 0-4 night. Josmil Pinto, the other bat Twins fans have been clamoring for, was 0-4 with two strike outs of his own as well. What a night! IT wasn't all bad, James Beresford and Eric Fryer (hitting eighth and ninth respectively) were both 2-3 with a run scored. I have no idea how the Red Wings scored any runs, but they clustered their hits together when it mattered to pull out a victory. Final: Pawtucket 1, Red Wings 4 LOOKOUTS LOOK-IN Chattanooga @ Tennessee Smokies Box Score The Lookouts committed more errors (2) than runs scored (1) on Thursday night. They also managed to strike out nine times and walked just once, and earned just four walks. No Lookouts hitter had multiple hits. Byron Buxton continued to slide with an 0-4 night with a pair of strike outs. Adam Brett Walker was 0-4 with two strike outs of his own as well. Max Leper was also 0-4, but managed just one strike out. The lone bright spot in the Lookouts lineup came from Mike Gonzales who was 1-3 with a solo home run. On the bump, Chattanooga pitchers struck out only one Tennessee hitter over eight innings. Lookouts starter Greg Peavey pitched into the seventh, but was pulled with one out. He was charged with three runs (two earned), he did not walk a batter, and had the Lookouts' lone strike out. Zack Jones finished the seventh for Chattanooga, but gave up a pair of runs. Time Shibuya pitched the eighth and gave up a run as well. Not much doing in a pretty quick game at Smokies Park, finished in 2:13. Final Score: Chattanooga 1, Tennessee 6 MIRACLE MATTERS Bradenton Marauders @ Fort Myers Box Score Three Miracle hitters had multi-hit nights, and the Miracle picked up ten hits as a team, but couldn't put the bat on the ball when it mattered, just 3-13 with runners in scoring position. Bradenton, on the other hand, was 8-20 with runners in scoring position and seemed like they were able to score at will, picking up runs in six different innings. Engelb Vielma, hitting leadoff, was 2-5 with a double. Mitch Garver was 2-3 with a walk and a run scored, and Marcus Knecht was 2-4 with a double, a run scored and two RBIs to pace with Miracle. Kohl Stewart dropped to 1-4 with a five inning, ten hit, five run (four earned) performance. He walked two and struck out three. His ERA this year is 3.92. Stewart gave way to Brian Gilbert, who pitched two effective innings before turning the ball over to Corey Williams in the eighth, who gave up a run, and Luke Westphal in the ninth, who gave up another. Final score: Bradenton 7, Fort Myers 3 KERNELS KORNER Cedar Rapids @ South Bend Cubs Box Score The Kernels fell short of a come from behind victory on Thursday night in South Bend, Indiana. Starting pitcher Dereck Rodriguez, making his Midwest League debut, was tagged for four runs in the first inning, but the Kernels rallied and were within striking distance most of the evening. Rodriguez lasted just three innings, he struck out one, walked four, and gave up those four early runs. Michael Theofanopoulos also threw three innings. He faired slightly better than Rodriguez, stricking out four, but giving up a pair of earned runs on four hits. Michael Caderoth pitched a clean seventh and Cameron Booser gave up a hit and recorded a strike out in the eighth. Booser's ERA is down to .74 after Thursday's game. The Kernels had just seven hits, but three of them went for extra bases, including a pair of doubles from Kernels' cleanup hitter Jorge Fernandez. Fernandez was 2-4 with two doubles, a run scored, and a strike out. Nick Gordon had a pair of hits as well, he was 2-3 with a run scored and a stolen base (his 13th of the year). The Kernels squandered a few opportunities to score runs, going just 1-8 with runners in scoring position, Final Score: Cedar Rapids 4, South Bend 6 TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS OF THE DAY Hitter of the Day - Jorge Fernandez, Cedar Rapids Kernels Pitcher of the Day - Taylor Rogers, Rochester Red Wings FRIDAY'S PROBABLES Pawtucket @ Rochester - Zeke Spurill vs. Pat Dean (5-3, 2.36) Chattanooga @ Tennessee - Brett Lee (AA Debut) vs. Ivan Pineyro Fort Myers @ Bradenton - Chih-Wei Hu (2-0, 2.29) vs. Jayson Aquino Cedar Rapids @ South Bend - Keaton Steele (2-0, 2.70) vs. Jake Stinnett
  15. On Wednesdays, Jeremy Nygaard is responsible for the Twins Minor League Report. However, he was at the Twins game with his kids and a bunch of school kids. They got to see the Twins sweep the Boston Red Sox and move into a tie for first place with the Royals in the AL Central. They also got to help Jeremy celebrate his birthday. We won’t disclose how old Jeremy is, but it is quite a bit older than JO Berrios who celebrated his 21st birthday on Wednesday. The Ft. Myers Miracle won in extra innings on Wednesday night to improve to 23-22, the first time they’ve been over .500 since early April. That is interesting because now all four of the Minnesota Twins minor league affiliates – and the big league club – are playing over .500. There have not been many times in recent years when we could say that.With that, we were back to a full slate of games in the Twins farm system on Wednesday. Continue to read how the teams and the players did. RED WINGS REPORT Rochester 8, Durham 2 Box Score The Red Wings got good pitching, six doubles and a late home run to win a Wednesday afternoon game in North Carolina. Taylor Rogers got the starting nod. The left-hander went seven innings and gave up two runs on seven hits. He walked two and struck out three to improve to 4-3 with a 3.34 ERA on the season. Casey Fien struck out two in a rehab outing. He pitched perfect innings in back-to-back and likely will be with the Twins when they start their series at Target Field against the Blue Jays on Friday. AJ Achter came in for the ninth inning and struck out two. Jose Martinez went 3-4 with his fourth double. Reynaldo Rodriguez went 2-5 with his 10th and 11th doubles. Kennys Vargas went 2-4 with a walk and his second double. Doug Bernier went 2-4 and drove in two runs with his fourth double. Danny Ortiz added his 11th double of the year. Argenis Diaz went 1-3 with two walks. Josmil Pinto hit a late, two-run homer, his fifth of the season. It was his first hit in 19 at -bats. Coming into Wednesday, he was hitting .158/.200/.281 (.481) in his last 15 games. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 6, Biloxi 8 Box Score The Lookouts have the best record in the Southern League North Division. Biloxi has the best record in the Southern League Southern Division. The two teams began a five-game series in Chattanooga on Wednesday night and hopefully each game will be as competitive as this one. Things started out well for the Lookouts. In the bottom of the first inning, they got on the board when a Travis Harrison single scored Jorge Polanco. In the third inning, Buxton led off with a double and advanced to third. He scored one batter later on a Miguel Sano groundout. The Lookouts then scored four runs in the bottom of the fourth inning to take a commanding 6-1 lead. Adam Walker doubled off the top of the wall in left field to score Max Kepler. Walker later scored on a wild pitch. Soon after, Buxton launched a ball to deep center field. It stayed in the ballpark and instead of another triple, Buxton raced all the way around the bases for an inside-the-park home run. Unfortunately, the Lookouts were not able to add more. Alex Wimmers got the start and was charged with two runs on six hits and a walk in five innings. Cole Johnson came on and struggled mightily. He was charged with three runs on two hits and two walks in just 0.2 innings. Nick Burdi came on to get out of that inning, holding the 6-5 lead. However, he gave up a run in the seventh on two hits to tie the score at six. Jake Reed pitched a perfect eighth frame. JT Chargois came on for his Double-A debut. He got the first two batters out, but then he gave up three straight singles. Fortunately, a Walker-to-Sano-to-Kepler relay throw got the runner trying to take the lead. Madison Boer came in for the 10th inning. He walked two and both came around to score. The Lookouts were unable to tie the score in the bottom of the 10th inning, and that was the ballgame. Buxton led the way. He hit his sixth home run and his sixth double. Travis Harrison went 3-5. Stuart Turner went 2-4 with his third home run. Max Kepler had two hits, including his 14th double. Jorge Polanco also had two hits. The Lookouts are now 28-17 while the Shuckers improve to 28-18. For Biloxi, shortstop Orlando Arcia went 3-6 in the game with a double and a home run. He is now hitting .343 with 13 doubles and three home runs this season. As you may have already guessed, the 20-year-old infielder is the brother of Twins outfielder Oswaldo Arcia. MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers 6, Clearwater 5 (10 innings) Box Score Mat Batts had to wait an extra day to make his Miracle and Florida State League debut, but it didn’t faze him at all. He pitched very well. The left-hander worked seven innings and gave up just one run. He gave up six hits, walked one and struck out three. As impressive, he has a 12-to-3 groundout-to-flyout rate in the game. Batts left the game with a 4-1 lead. Ethan Mildren began the eighth inning for the Miracle. He gave up two runs on three hits and got just two outs. Todd Van Steensel came on and got the final out of the eighth inning before the tying run scored. However, he was charged with a run on two hits and three walks (one intentional) in the ninth. It tied the game at four and sent the teams to extra innings. In the top of the 10th, a Niko Goodrum single drove in two runs and gave the team a 6-4 lead. Alex Muren came on for the bottom of the tenth. He gave up an unearned run on two hits, but it was good enough to record his first save of the season. Alex Swim got on base four times. He went 2-3 with two walks. Chad Christensen had two hits including his second home run. Goodrum had two hits including the big 10th inning hit. Zach Granite had an RBI double early in the game. With the win, the Miracle are now 23-22. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 7, Wisconsin 3 Box Score For the 30th time this season, the Cedar Rapids Kernels were able to shake hands at the end of the game following a win. They fell behind 2-0 early, but after that, it was all Kernels. Felix Jorge made his eighth start of the season, and for the seventh time, he completed six innings. He was charged with three runs on five hits. He walked none and struck out five. Lefty Jose Velez came on and worked scoreless seventh and eighth innings. He gave up just one hit, walked none and struck out two. Luke Bard gave up a walk and a hit, but no runs, in the ninth inning to close out the game. Everyone contributed to the offensive output on this night. All nine hitters had at least one hit. Five players had doubles. Nick Gordon went 1-3 with two walks and his fifth double. Max Murphy went 2-3 with a walk, his ninth double and three RBI. Trey Vavra did not play after hurting his ankle on Tuesday night. He said it was swollen but not serious. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Mat Batts, Ft. Myers Miracle Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Byron Buxton, Chattanooga Lookouts THURSDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Rochester – No Game Scheduled Biloxi @ Chattanooga (6:15 CST) – LHP David Hurlbut Ft. Myers @ Clearwater (DH @ 4:00 CST) – RHP Ryan Eades, LHP Brett Lee Wisconsin @ Cedar Rapids (6:35 CST) – RHP Jared Wilson Please feel free to discuss the Twins minor league system and the games from Wednesday. Click here to view the article
  16. With that, we were back to a full slate of games in the Twins farm system on Wednesday. Continue to read how the teams and the players did. RED WINGS REPORT Rochester 8, Durham 2 Box Score The Red Wings got good pitching, six doubles and a late home run to win a Wednesday afternoon game in North Carolina. Taylor Rogers got the starting nod. The left-hander went seven innings and gave up two runs on seven hits. He walked two and struck out three to improve to 4-3 with a 3.34 ERA on the season. Casey Fien struck out two in a rehab outing. He pitched perfect innings in back-to-back and likely will be with the Twins when they start their series at Target Field against the Blue Jays on Friday. AJ Achter came in for the ninth inning and struck out two. Jose Martinez went 3-4 with his fourth double. Reynaldo Rodriguez went 2-5 with his 10th and 11th doubles. Kennys Vargas went 2-4 with a walk and his second double. Doug Bernier went 2-4 and drove in two runs with his fourth double. Danny Ortiz added his 11th double of the year. Argenis Diaz went 1-3 with two walks. Josmil Pinto hit a late, two-run homer, his fifth of the season. It was his first hit in 19 at -bats. Coming into Wednesday, he was hitting .158/.200/.281 (.481) in his last 15 games. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 6, Biloxi 8 Box Score The Lookouts have the best record in the Southern League North Division. Biloxi has the best record in the Southern League Southern Division. The two teams began a five-game series in Chattanooga on Wednesday night and hopefully each game will be as competitive as this one. Things started out well for the Lookouts. In the bottom of the first inning, they got on the board when a Travis Harrison single scored Jorge Polanco. In the third inning, Buxton led off with a double and advanced to third. He scored one batter later on a Miguel Sano groundout. The Lookouts then scored four runs in the bottom of the fourth inning to take a commanding 6-1 lead. Adam Walker doubled off the top of the wall in left field to score Max Kepler. Walker later scored on a wild pitch. Soon after, Buxton launched a ball to deep center field. It stayed in the ballpark and instead of another triple, Buxton raced all the way around the bases for an inside-the-park home run. Unfortunately, the Lookouts were not able to add more. Alex Wimmers got the start and was charged with two runs on six hits and a walk in five innings. Cole Johnson came on and struggled mightily. He was charged with three runs on two hits and two walks in just 0.2 innings. Nick Burdi came on to get out of that inning, holding the 6-5 lead. However, he gave up a run in the seventh on two hits to tie the score at six. Jake Reed pitched a perfect eighth frame. JT Chargois came on for his Double-A debut. He got the first two batters out, but then he gave up three straight singles. Fortunately, a Walker-to-Sano-to-Kepler relay throw got the runner trying to take the lead. Madison Boer came in for the 10th inning. He walked two and both came around to score. The Lookouts were unable to tie the score in the bottom of the 10th inning, and that was the ballgame. Buxton led the way. He hit his sixth home run and his sixth double. Travis Harrison went 3-5. Stuart Turner went 2-4 with his third home run. Max Kepler had two hits, including his 14th double. Jorge Polanco also had two hits. The Lookouts are now 28-17 while the Shuckers improve to 28-18. For Biloxi, shortstop Orlando Arcia went 3-6 in the game with a double and a home run. He is now hitting .343 with 13 doubles and three home runs this season. As you may have already guessed, the 20-year-old infielder is the brother of Twins outfielder Oswaldo Arcia. MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers 6, Clearwater 5 (10 innings) Box Score Mat Batts had to wait an extra day to make his Miracle and Florida State League debut, but it didn’t faze him at all. He pitched very well. The left-hander worked seven innings and gave up just one run. He gave up six hits, walked one and struck out three. As impressive, he has a 12-to-3 groundout-to-flyout rate in the game. Batts left the game with a 4-1 lead. Ethan Mildren began the eighth inning for the Miracle. He gave up two runs on three hits and got just two outs. Todd Van Steensel came on and got the final out of the eighth inning before the tying run scored. However, he was charged with a run on two hits and three walks (one intentional) in the ninth. It tied the game at four and sent the teams to extra innings. In the top of the 10th, a Niko Goodrum single drove in two runs and gave the team a 6-4 lead. Alex Muren came on for the bottom of the tenth. He gave up an unearned run on two hits, but it was good enough to record his first save of the season. Alex Swim got on base four times. He went 2-3 with two walks. Chad Christensen had two hits including his second home run. Goodrum had two hits including the big 10th inning hit. Zach Granite had an RBI double early in the game. With the win, the Miracle are now 23-22. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 7, Wisconsin 3 Box Score For the 30th time this season, the Cedar Rapids Kernels were able to shake hands at the end of the game following a win. They fell behind 2-0 early, but after that, it was all Kernels. Felix Jorge made his eighth start of the season, and for the seventh time, he completed six innings. He was charged with three runs on five hits. He walked none and struck out five. Lefty Jose Velez came on and worked scoreless seventh and eighth innings. He gave up just one hit, walked none and struck out two. Luke Bard gave up a walk and a hit, but no runs, in the ninth inning to close out the game. Everyone contributed to the offensive output on this night. All nine hitters had at least one hit. Five players had doubles. Nick Gordon went 1-3 with two walks and his fifth double. Max Murphy went 2-3 with a walk, his ninth double and three RBI. Trey Vavra did not play after hurting his ankle on Tuesday night. He said it was swollen but not serious. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Mat Batts, Ft. Myers Miracle Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Byron Buxton, Chattanooga Lookouts THURSDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Rochester – No Game Scheduled Biloxi @ Chattanooga (6:15 CST) – LHP David Hurlbut Ft. Myers @ Clearwater (DH @ 4:00 CST) – RHP Ryan Eades, LHP Brett Lee Wisconsin @ Cedar Rapids (6:35 CST) – RHP Jared Wilson Please feel free to discuss the Twins minor league system and the games from Wednesday.
  17. It was a good day in the Twins farm system on Saturday. Read below for all of the scores and highlights. RED WINGS REPORT Rochester 3, Norfolk 4 Box Score The game was knotted at three going into the bottom of the ninth inning. Veteran Doug Bernier led off the inning with a double, his second of the season. Shortstop Argenis Diaz was asked to bunt. He got the bunt down and pitcher Pedro Beato threw the ball away, allowing Bernier to score the winning run. Taylor Rogers made the start for the Red Wings. He gave up three runs (2 earned) on seven hits. In seven innings, he walked two and struck out five. He helped himself by picking off two runners as well. Logan Darnell came on for the eighth inning and got two outs. One of those came on a pickoff as well. Lester Oliveros got the final out of the eighth and three outs in the ninth to get the win. He walked one and struck one out. Diaz was 2-3. Reynaldo Rodriguez hit his sixth double. Eric Fryer hasn’t played a lot, but when he does, he has raked! In this game, he was 2-3 with a walk and two doubles, his second and third. He has played in just eight games, but he now has 12 hits in 23 at bats. His slash line is .522/.577/.652 (1.229). CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 6, Jacksonville 3 Box Score Yesterday, I wrote that Byron Buxton is officially back. That trend continued on Saturday night. He doubled in the first inning. He added a triple in his second at bat. In his final at bat, his RBI triple gave the Lookouts some insurance. He was 3-5 in the game with a double and two triples. For a little extra measure, late in the game with a runner on first base, Buxton caught a liner in left centerfield. He then threw out the runner getting back to first base for a big double play, showing off his rocket of an arm. Again, after Doug Mientkiewicz benched him for two games a week ago, Buxton was hitting .180. After today’s showing, he is now at .284. In those eight games, he is hitting .452 (14-31). It was a good day for the big prospects. Jorge Polanco had a big game. He went 2-3 with two walks and his fifth double of the season. He drove in two runs. He also stole his fifth base of the season. Miguel Sano hit his third double off the top of the wall in centerfield. On the mound, Berrios improved to 3-1 with another quality start. He gave up three earned runs on eight hits over six innings. He walked two and struck out nine batters. Cole Johnson worked the next two innings. He gave up two hits, but walked none and struck out four. Zack Jones came on for the ninth inning. He recorded his sixth save in six attempts with a 1-2-3 innings. MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers 4, Charlotte 3 (11 innings) Box Score In the 11th innings, the Miracle had nobody on and two outs. Michael Quesada walked and was replaced by Chad Christensen on the base paths. Tanner Vavra singles. Engelb Vielma then singled to left and Christensen scored to put the Miracle ahead 4-3. Todd Van Steensel came in and shut the door on the Miracle’s extra-inning win. Alex Swim led the Miracle offense. He went 4-5 in the game and is now hitting .326. Marcus Knecht went 2-4 with his fourth double. Tanner Vavra went 2-5. Ryan Eades made the start for the Miracle. He struggled with his command. He gave up three runs on two hits and five walks in five innings. He struck out four. Alex Muren came on and threw two scoreless innings. Madison Boer struck out three over three scoreless frames. Van Steensel’s save was his first of the year. He struck out one. The bullpen combined for six no-hit, no-run innings to give the team a chance. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 7, Clinton 6 (13 innings) Box Score Third baseman TJ White led off the bottom of the 13th inning with a triple. After a pop-out, Red Wing native Pat Kelly came up and hit a fly ball to left field. Fortunately for the Kernels, and the fans waiting for fireworks after the game, White was safe at home and the Kernels had a one-run win. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YG6ttraX93g&feature=youtu.be video by Steve Buhr In the 11th inning, Tanner English had tripled. Because his team had struggled to score runs in the last week, Jake Mauer sent him home but he was thrown out. Down by a run in the bottom of the 9th, it was Nick Gordon who singled in a run to send it to extra innings. Gordon led the offense. He went 3-6 in the game and drove in two runs. TJ White went 2-4 with two walks and the triple. Tyler Kuresa had two hits. Brett Doe hit his first home run. Michael Cederoth started the game for the Kernels. He gave up three unearned runs on three hits. In four innings, he walked five and struck out seven. Randy LeBlanc came in and gave up three runs on four hits and a walk in two innings. CK Irby walked one and struck out four over two scoreless innings. Cameron Booser came on and gave up one hit and two walks in two scoreless innings. He struck out three. Finally, Trevor Hildenberger struck out four batters in three scoreless innings. He gave up just one hit to get the Win. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Madison Boer, Ft. Myers Miracle Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Byron Buxton, Chattanooga Lookouts SUNDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Norfolk @ Rochester (12:35 CST) – RHP Alex Meyer Jacksonville @ Chattanooga (1:15 CST) – RHP Greg Peavey Charlotte @ Ft. Myers (3:05 CST) – LHP Brett Lee Clinton @ Cedar Rapids (2:05 CST) – RHP Felix Jorge Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss the Saturday games.
  18. The Twins reached .500 with their third straight victory over the White Sox on Saturday. Chattanooga also returned to .500 on Saturday with a big win. The Lookouts got big contributions from some major prospects including Jose Berrios, Miguel Sano, Jorge Polanco and Zack Jones. And yes, Byron Buxton’s hot streak continued. In eight games since Doug Mientkiewicz sat him for two games, Buxton is hitting .452 and his batting average has increased from .180 to .284! The Miracle won in dramatic fashion as well!It was a good day in the Twins farm system on Saturday. Read below for all of the scores and highlights. RED WINGS REPORT Rochester 3, Norfolk 4 Box Score The game was knotted at three going into the bottom of the ninth inning. Veteran Doug Bernier led off the inning with a double, his second of the season. Shortstop Argenis Diaz was asked to bunt. He got the bunt down and pitcher Pedro Beato threw the ball away, allowing Bernier to score the winning run. Taylor Rogers made the start for the Red Wings. He gave up three runs (2 earned) on seven hits. In seven innings, he walked two and struck out five. He helped himself by picking off two runners as well. Logan Darnell came on for the eighth inning and got two outs. One of those came on a pickoff as well. Lester Oliveros got the final out of the eighth and three outs in the ninth to get the win. He walked one and struck one out. Diaz was 2-3. Reynaldo Rodriguez hit his sixth double. Eric Fryer hasn’t played a lot, but when he does, he has raked! In this game, he was 2-3 with a walk and two doubles, his second and third. He has played in just eight games, but he now has 12 hits in 23 at bats. His slash line is .522/.577/.652 (1.229). CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 6, Jacksonville 3 Box Score Yesterday, I wrote that Byron Buxton is officially back. That trend continued on Saturday night. He doubled in the first inning. He added a triple in his second at bat. In his final at bat, his RBI triple gave the Lookouts some insurance. He was 3-5 in the game with a double and two triples. For a little extra measure, late in the game with a runner on first base, Buxton caught a liner in left centerfield. He then threw out the runner getting back to first base for a big double play, showing off his rocket of an arm. Again, after Doug Mientkiewicz benched him for two games a week ago, Buxton was hitting .180. After today’s showing, he is now at .284. In those eight games, he is hitting .452 (14-31). It was a good day for the big prospects. Jorge Polanco had a big game. He went 2-3 with two walks and his fifth double of the season. He drove in two runs. He also stole his fifth base of the season. Miguel Sano hit his third double off the top of the wall in centerfield. On the mound, Berrios improved to 3-1 with another quality start. He gave up three earned runs on eight hits over six innings. He walked two and struck out nine batters. Cole Johnson worked the next two innings. He gave up two hits, but walked none and struck out four. Zack Jones came on for the ninth inning. He recorded his sixth save in six attempts with a 1-2-3 innings. MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers 4, Charlotte 3 (11 innings) Box Score In the 11th innings, the Miracle had nobody on and two outs. Michael Quesada walked and was replaced by Chad Christensen on the base paths. Tanner Vavra singles. Engelb Vielma then singled to left and Christensen scored to put the Miracle ahead 4-3. Todd Van Steensel came in and shut the door on the Miracle’s extra-inning win. Alex Swim led the Miracle offense. He went 4-5 in the game and is now hitting .326. Marcus Knecht went 2-4 with his fourth double. Tanner Vavra went 2-5. Ryan Eades made the start for the Miracle. He struggled with his command. He gave up three runs on two hits and five walks in five innings. He struck out four. Alex Muren came on and threw two scoreless innings. Madison Boer struck out three over three scoreless frames. Van Steensel’s save was his first of the year. He struck out one. The bullpen combined for six no-hit, no-run innings to give the team a chance. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 7, Clinton 6 (13 innings) Box Score Third baseman TJ White led off the bottom of the 13th inning with a triple. After a pop-out, Red Wing native Pat Kelly came up and hit a fly ball to left field. Fortunately for the Kernels, and the fans waiting for fireworks after the game, White was safe at home and the Kernels had a one-run win. video by Steve Buhr In the 11th inning, Tanner English had tripled. Because his team had struggled to score runs in the last week, Jake Mauer sent him home but he was thrown out. Down by a run in the bottom of the 9th, it was Nick Gordon who singled in a run to send it to extra innings. Gordon led the offense. He went 3-6 in the game and drove in two runs. TJ White went 2-4 with two walks and the triple. Tyler Kuresa had two hits. Brett Doe hit his first home run. Michael Cederoth started the game for the Kernels. He gave up three unearned runs on three hits. In four innings, he walked five and struck out seven. Randy LeBlanc came in and gave up three runs on four hits and a walk in two innings. CK Irby walked one and struck out four over two scoreless innings. Cameron Booser came on and gave up one hit and two walks in two scoreless innings. He struck out three. Finally, Trevor Hildenberger struck out four batters in three scoreless innings. He gave up just one hit to get the Win. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Madison Boer, Ft. Myers Miracle Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Byron Buxton, Chattanooga Lookouts SUNDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Norfolk @ Rochester (12:35 CST) – RHP Alex Meyer Jacksonville @ Chattanooga (1:15 CST) – RHP Greg Peavey Charlotte @ Ft. Myers (3:05 CST) – LHP Brett Lee Clinton @ Cedar Rapids (2:05 CST) – RHP Felix Jorge Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss the Saturday games. Click here to view the article
  19. After fast starts for most of the minor league affiliates, things have come back down to earth over the last week. Cedar Rapids, Fort Myers and Chattanooga have all lost multiple games in a row, with the Lookouts in the midst of losing six of their last seven games. Top prospect Jose Berrios was on the mound to try to end that streak tonight. Rochester has been picking up some of the slack with a nice little stretch of four wins in their last five games. This includes a two-game win streak to start this week. Would this trend continue or would the Red Wings join the rest of the losing happening on the farm?RED WINGS REPORT Rochester 6, Columbus 1 Box Score A strong pitching performance from Taylor Rogers and a trio of home runs from Doug Bernier, Reynaldo Rodriguez and Brock Peterson helped Rochester push their latest winning streak to three games. Rogers allowed one earned run on two hits over eight strong frames, the first time has he reached the eighth all season. He walked four and struck out four en route to his second win. A.J. Achter finished the game with a perfect ninth, including two punch outs. The Bernier and Rodriguez homers were part of a four-run fifth inning that put Rochester up for good. Peterson's knock, his team-leading fourth of the year, was part of a two-run eighth. Eddie Rosario went 2-for-4 and scored a run. Jose Martinez led the team with three hits including his third double. Outfielder Wilkin Ramirez, who is currently on the disabled list, was with the team on Monday. He has been rehabbing from a pulled muscle injury and he will likely rejoin the team in the near future. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 5, Tennessee 3 Box Score Jose Berrios made his fourth start of the season on Monday night, and he tried to help the Lookouts get back to their winning ways. He did his best to put his team in position to win by throwing six innings of two-hit ball. The only run he allowed was on a solo home run. Berrios danced around a season-high four walks but his five strikeouts helped get out of some jams. Berrios left with 4-1 lead and things got a little dicey with Nick Burdi on the mound. The first batter he faced coaxed a walk and the next batter hit a home run. He got out of the inning with two pop outs, a single and a strikeout. Jake Reed and Zack Jones combined to pitch scoreless eighth and ninth innings to preserve the win. Stephen Wickens drove in two runs and reached base three times to help power the offense. Byron Buxton had multiple hits for the second time in the last three games. Max Kepler collected his first triple of the year and Levi Michael scored a pair of runs. Adam Brett Walker crushed his league-leading 5th home run of the season, a blast to right centerfield. MIRACLE MATTERS Fort Myers 5, Palm Beach 4 (11 innings) Box Score This was the fifth meeting between these two clubs this season and the Miracle had yet to find a way to beat the Cardinals. It took another extra-inning affair and a come-from-behind route, but the Miracle finally found a way to come out victorious. Luke Westphal made his third start and lasted four innings while giving up four runs on six hits. He struck out one and walked one. The Miracle bullpen was masterful. Alex Muren, Brian Gilbert, J.T. Chargois, and Tim Shibuya combined to toss eight shutout innings with all but Chargois throwing multiple frames. Shibuya picked up his first win of the season. Alex Swim started the rally in the 11th inning with a one-out single. The Miracle then used three consecutive walks, to Mitch Garver, Niko Goodrum and Marcus Knecht, to score the winning run. Knecht and Bryan Haar had matching 2-5 lines with a double each. Swim and Chad Christensen both collected three hits. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids- Scheduled Off Day The Kernels are in the midst of a three game losing streak in which they were swept by Kane County. Cedar Rapids entered the day with an 11-7 record. That mark was good enough for second place, two games back, in the Midwest League Western Division. Zack Granite currently leads the team in batting average (.364), OBP (.485), and OPS (.958). Trey Vavra leads the team in home runs (3) and slugging percentage (.589). Granite and Vavra are tied for the team lead with four doubles. Nick Gordon leads the team in triples (2) and RBI (15). Tanner English has stolen seven bases while Granite is not far behind with six steals. Stephen Gonsalves, Mat Batts, and Jared Wilson lead the team's starters with two wins each. Gonsalves leads starters with a 0.90 ERA and 30 strikeouts in 20 IP. Cameron Booser leads the team with two saves and an-eye popping 15 strikeouts in eight innings pitched. Felix Jorge has also been impressive with 24 strikeouts in 18 innings pitched with a 1.50 ERA. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Taylor Rogers, Rochester Red Wings Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Stephen Wickens, Chattanooga Lookouts TUESDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Rochester vs Columbus (5:35 CST) – RHP Alex Meyer Chattanooga @ Mississippi (6:05 CST)- RHP Greg Peavey Ft. Myers vs Palm Beach (6:05 CST) – RHP Aaron Slegers Cedar Rapids @ Quad Cities (11:00 am CST) - RHP Jared Wilson Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss the Monday games. Click here to view the article
  20. RED WINGS REPORT Rochester 6, Columbus 1 Box Score A strong pitching performance from Taylor Rogers and a trio of home runs from Doug Bernier, Reynaldo Rodriguez and Brock Peterson helped Rochester push their latest winning streak to three games. Rogers allowed one earned run on two hits over eight strong frames, the first time has he reached the eighth all season. He walked four and struck out four en route to his second win. A.J. Achter finished the game with a perfect ninth, including two punch outs. The Bernier and Rodriguez homers were part of a four-run fifth inning that put Rochester up for good. Peterson's knock, his team-leading fourth of the year, was part of a two-run eighth. Eddie Rosario went 2-for-4 and scored a run. Jose Martinez led the team with three hits including his third double. Outfielder Wilkin Ramirez, who is currently on the disabled list, was with the team on Monday. He has been rehabbing from a pulled muscle injury and he will likely rejoin the team in the near future. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 5, Tennessee 3 Box Score Jose Berrios made his fourth start of the season on Monday night, and he tried to help the Lookouts get back to their winning ways. He did his best to put his team in position to win by throwing six innings of two-hit ball. The only run he allowed was on a solo home run. Berrios danced around a season-high four walks but his five strikeouts helped get out of some jams. Berrios left with 4-1 lead and things got a little dicey with Nick Burdi on the mound. The first batter he faced coaxed a walk and the next batter hit a home run. He got out of the inning with two pop outs, a single and a strikeout. Jake Reed and Zack Jones combined to pitch scoreless eighth and ninth innings to preserve the win. Stephen Wickens drove in two runs and reached base three times to help power the offense. Byron Buxton had multiple hits for the second time in the last three games. Max Kepler collected his first triple of the year and Levi Michael scored a pair of runs. Adam Brett Walker crushed his league-leading 5th home run of the season, a blast to right centerfield. MIRACLE MATTERS Fort Myers 5, Palm Beach 4 (11 innings) Box Score This was the fifth meeting between these two clubs this season and the Miracle had yet to find a way to beat the Cardinals. It took another extra-inning affair and a come-from-behind route, but the Miracle finally found a way to come out victorious. Luke Westphal made his third start and lasted four innings while giving up four runs on six hits. He struck out one and walked one. The Miracle bullpen was masterful. Alex Muren, Brian Gilbert, J.T. Chargois, and Tim Shibuya combined to toss eight shutout innings with all but Chargois throwing multiple frames. Shibuya picked up his first win of the season. Alex Swim started the rally in the 11th inning with a one-out single. The Miracle then used three consecutive walks, to Mitch Garver, Niko Goodrum and Marcus Knecht, to score the winning run. Knecht and Bryan Haar had matching 2-5 lines with a double each. Swim and Chad Christensen both collected three hits. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids- Scheduled Off Day The Kernels are in the midst of a three game losing streak in which they were swept by Kane County. Cedar Rapids entered the day with an 11-7 record. That mark was good enough for second place, two games back, in the Midwest League Western Division. Zack Granite currently leads the team in batting average (.364), OBP (.485), and OPS (.958). Trey Vavra leads the team in home runs (3) and slugging percentage (.589). Granite and Vavra are tied for the team lead with four doubles. Nick Gordon leads the team in triples (2) and RBI (15). Tanner English has stolen seven bases while Granite is not far behind with six steals. Stephen Gonsalves, Mat Batts, and Jared Wilson lead the team's starters with two wins each. Gonsalves leads starters with a 0.90 ERA and 30 strikeouts in 20 IP. Cameron Booser leads the team with two saves and an-eye popping 15 strikeouts in eight innings pitched. Felix Jorge has also been impressive with 24 strikeouts in 18 innings pitched with a 1.50 ERA. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Taylor Rogers, Rochester Red Wings Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Stephen Wickens, Chattanooga Lookouts TUESDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Rochester vs Columbus (5:35 CST) – RHP Alex Meyer Chattanooga @ Mississippi (6:05 CST)- RHP Greg Peavey Ft. Myers vs Palm Beach (6:05 CST) – RHP Aaron Slegers Cedar Rapids @ Quad Cities (11:00 am CST) - RHP Jared Wilson Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss the Monday games.
  21. Three teams struggled to do anything on offense on Tuesday, but the Cedar Rapids Kernels remained hot and picked up another big win… in the snow in Wisconsin. The Red Wings played two games, each started by a pitcher from the University of Kentucky. Both pitched very well. One big streak came to an end for a Lookouts pitcher. It was a full schedule and more in the Twins farm system. Read all about it below.RED WINGS REPORT Game 1 – Rochester 0, Syracuse 1 Box Score There is no way around it. Alex Meyer really struggled in his first two starts, primarily with his control. His third start was supposed to be on Monday night, but rain postponed it until Tuesday afternoon as part of a doubleheader. Meyer struggled early. Over the first two innings, just 12 of his 25 pitches were strikes, and yet he did not allow a run. In fact, he did not allow a single run over his six innings. He gave up just two hits. He walked three and struck out a career-high 11 batters. Of his 96 pitches, 55 of them were strikes (57.3%). However, the Red Wings bats were unable to do much against Syracuse starter A.J. Cole, who threw six shutout innings. Former Twins draft pick Evan Meek tossed a scoreless seventh. The Red Wings managed just six hits in the game (double what Syracuse had). Reynaldo Rodriguez went 2-3 with his second double of the season. A.J. Achter came on in the bottom of the 7th and threw just one pitch. It was a strike, and third baseman Jason Martinson ended the first game with a solo home run. Game 2 – Rochester 2, Syracuse 0 Box Score Meyer’s former college teammate at Kentucky, Taylor Rogers, was summoned to make the Game 2 start. The lefty was very good again. He too worked six scoreless innings for the Red Wings. He gave up just four hits, walked one, hit one and struck out six. 62 of his 90 pitches were strikes (68.9%). Michael Tonkin came on for the ninth to protect a two-run lead. He walked one batter but got through the inning unscathed to record his fourth save of the year. As they did in the first game, the Red Wings had six hits. Aaron Hicks was 1-2 with a walk. Doug Bernier added a double. The two RBI came in the third innings on RBI singles from Argenis Diaz and Eddie Rosario. The split keeps the Red Wings at .500 on the season, at 6-6. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 1, Mississippi 4 Box Score Tyler Duffey started this game with three shutout innings. That gave him a career-high 16.2 scoreless innings. However, he gave up a single run each of the next four innings. In totally, he was charged with four runs on eight hits and two walks in seven innings. He struck out two. Nick Burdi came on for the eighth inning. He got the first two batters out. He then gave up two hits and a walk before ending the inning with a strikeout. Unfortunately, the Lookouts were not able to do anything on offense. They had just two hits, doubles by Miguel Sano and Carlos Paulino. Dalton Hicks and Byron Buxton each walked twice. The Lookouts are now have a 6-5 record. MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers 0, Palm Beach 4 Box Score Kohl Stewart made his third start of the year. Through six innings, he had allowed just two runs. However, he was charged with two more runs in the 7th inning. His full line reads, four runs on six hits and two walks in 6.1 innings. He struck out two. Brian Gilbert came on to get the final two outs of the seventh frame and then pitched a scoreless eighth inning. The Miracle had seven hits and six walks in the game. Logan Wade went 3-4. Marcus Knecht was 1-3 with a walk. Aderlin Mejia walked twice. The Miracle drop to 5-8 on the season. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 10, Wisconsin 1 Box Score Despite playing in sub-40 degree temperatures, the Kernels bats were hot in this game. With no score in the top of the third, Trey Vavra came to the plate with two on and belted his third home run of the year. The three-run blast was his third home run of the season. The Kernels added a single run in the sixth inning when a Brian Navarreto sacrifice fly scored T.J. White, who had doubled. In the seventh inning Zach Granite doubled and later scored on a Zack Larson single. Larson scored on a Trey Vavra triple, and Vavra scored on a TJ White single. When Nick Gordon singled in a run in the 8th inning, it gave the Kernels an 8-1 lead and also meant that all nine Kernels starters had at least one hit in the game. A Max Murphy RBI groundout followed by an RBI single off the bat of Vavra, and the Kernels had a 10-1 lead. Vavra led the offense, going 3-5 with a triple, a home run and five RBI. Larson went 3-4 with a walk. T.J .White was 2-5 with his third double. Zach Granite hit his fourth double and stole his fourth base. Of course, pitching is still a very important part of the team, and on this night the Kernels got another strong start from lefty Mat Batts. In 6.2 innings, he gave up one run on three hits. He walked one and struck out six. He left the game with two outs in the seventh and no runs allowed. Right-hander Miles Nordgren came on and hit a batter and gave up an RBI single before getting the final out of the inning. He pitched scoreless eighth and ninth innings to finish it out. And as the game finished, the temperatures were in the low-30s, and there was a wintry mix of snow, rain and sleet blowing horizontally. With the win, the Kernels improve to 9-4 on the season. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Taylor Rogers, Rochester Red Wings Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Trey Vavra, Cedar Rapids Kernels SUNDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Rochester @ Syracuse (12:05 CST) – LHP Jason Wheeler Chattanooga @Mississippi (11:00 am CST) – RHP JO Berrios Ft. Myers @ Palm Beach (5:35 CST) – RHP Aaron Slegers Cedar Rapids @ Wisconsin (6:35 CST) – RHP Zach Tillery Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss the Tuesday games. Click here to view the article
  22. RED WINGS REPORT Game 1 – Rochester 0, Syracuse 1 Box Score There is no way around it. Alex Meyer really struggled in his first two starts, primarily with his control. His third start was supposed to be on Monday night, but rain postponed it until Tuesday afternoon as part of a doubleheader. Meyer struggled early. Over the first two innings, just 12 of his 25 pitches were strikes, and yet he did not allow a run. In fact, he did not allow a single run over his six innings. He gave up just two hits. He walked three and struck out a career-high 11 batters. Of his 96 pitches, 55 of them were strikes (57.3%). However, the Red Wings bats were unable to do much against Syracuse starter A.J. Cole, who threw six shutout innings. Former Twins draft pick Evan Meek tossed a scoreless seventh. The Red Wings managed just six hits in the game (double what Syracuse had). Reynaldo Rodriguez went 2-3 with his second double of the season. A.J. Achter came on in the bottom of the 7th and threw just one pitch. It was a strike, and third baseman Jason Martinson ended the first game with a solo home run. Game 2 – Rochester 2, Syracuse 0 Box Score Meyer’s former college teammate at Kentucky, Taylor Rogers, was summoned to make the Game 2 start. The lefty was very good again. He too worked six scoreless innings for the Red Wings. He gave up just four hits, walked one, hit one and struck out six. 62 of his 90 pitches were strikes (68.9%). Michael Tonkin came on for the ninth to protect a two-run lead. He walked one batter but got through the inning unscathed to record his fourth save of the year. As they did in the first game, the Red Wings had six hits. Aaron Hicks was 1-2 with a walk. Doug Bernier added a double. The two RBI came in the third innings on RBI singles from Argenis Diaz and Eddie Rosario. The split keeps the Red Wings at .500 on the season, at 6-6. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 1, Mississippi 4 Box Score Tyler Duffey started this game with three shutout innings. That gave him a career-high 16.2 scoreless innings. However, he gave up a single run each of the next four innings. In totally, he was charged with four runs on eight hits and two walks in seven innings. He struck out two. Nick Burdi came on for the eighth inning. He got the first two batters out. He then gave up two hits and a walk before ending the inning with a strikeout. Unfortunately, the Lookouts were not able to do anything on offense. They had just two hits, doubles by Miguel Sano and Carlos Paulino. Dalton Hicks and Byron Buxton each walked twice. The Lookouts are now have a 6-5 record. MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers 0, Palm Beach 4 Box Score Kohl Stewart made his third start of the year. Through six innings, he had allowed just two runs. However, he was charged with two more runs in the 7th inning. His full line reads, four runs on six hits and two walks in 6.1 innings. He struck out two. Brian Gilbert came on to get the final two outs of the seventh frame and then pitched a scoreless eighth inning. The Miracle had seven hits and six walks in the game. Logan Wade went 3-4. Marcus Knecht was 1-3 with a walk. Aderlin Mejia walked twice. The Miracle drop to 5-8 on the season. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 10, Wisconsin 1 Box Score Despite playing in sub-40 degree temperatures, the Kernels bats were hot in this game. With no score in the top of the third, Trey Vavra came to the plate with two on and belted his third home run of the year. The three-run blast was his third home run of the season. The Kernels added a single run in the sixth inning when a Brian Navarreto sacrifice fly scored T.J. White, who had doubled. In the seventh inning Zach Granite doubled and later scored on a Zack Larson single. Larson scored on a Trey Vavra triple, and Vavra scored on a TJ White single. When Nick Gordon singled in a run in the 8th inning, it gave the Kernels an 8-1 lead and also meant that all nine Kernels starters had at least one hit in the game. A Max Murphy RBI groundout followed by an RBI single off the bat of Vavra, and the Kernels had a 10-1 lead. Vavra led the offense, going 3-5 with a triple, a home run and five RBI. Larson went 3-4 with a walk. T.J .White was 2-5 with his third double. Zach Granite hit his fourth double and stole his fourth base. Of course, pitching is still a very important part of the team, and on this night the Kernels got another strong start from lefty Mat Batts. In 6.2 innings, he gave up one run on three hits. He walked one and struck out six. He left the game with two outs in the seventh and no runs allowed. Right-hander Miles Nordgren came on and hit a batter and gave up an RBI single before getting the final out of the inning. He pitched scoreless eighth and ninth innings to finish it out. And as the game finished, the temperatures were in the low-30s, and there was a wintry mix of snow, rain and sleet blowing horizontally. With the win, the Kernels improve to 9-4 on the season. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Taylor Rogers, Rochester Red Wings Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Trey Vavra, Cedar Rapids Kernels SUNDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Rochester @ Syracuse (12:05 CST) – LHP Jason Wheeler Chattanooga @Mississippi (11:00 am CST) – RHP JO Berrios Ft. Myers @ Palm Beach (5:35 CST) – RHP Aaron Slegers Cedar Rapids @ Wisconsin (6:35 CST) – RHP Zach Tillery Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss the Tuesday games.
  23. On Saturday, the Twins farm system was complete with no-hit bids, big home runs and clutch hits, shutouts and a walkoff win. A couple of the Twins big prospects connected for their first home runs of the spring. On Sunday, the Cedar Rapids Kernels will be playing their home opener. I’ll be reporting from Cedar Rapids throughout the three-game series.Jeremy Nygaard, Cody Christie and I are excited about the start of the 2015 Minor League season and are offering the 2015 Minnesota Twins Prospect Handbook in paperback right now at a 15% discount. Get your copy today, if you haven’t already. It’s also available as an electronic book which is available for immediate download. We have had two days’ worth of Twins Daily readers participating in this year’s Adopt-A-Prospect. At this point, feel free to adopt more players – whether you have or haven’t – and start by posting their initial bio/profile in the Adopt-A-Prospect 2015 forum. Let’s get to today’s report. The Rochester Red Wings announced following their game that Pat Dean would be taking Trevor May’s spot in their rotation RED WINGS REPORT Rochester 2, Buffalo 0 Box Score After being weathered out on Friday, the Rochester Red Wings played their home opener on Saturday afternoon against Buffalo. Fans in attendance watched quite the pitcher’s duel, and then were sent home in dramatic fashion. Lefty Taylor Rogers was given the nod to start and was fantastic. He didn’t allow a hit until the fifth inning. He finished the day with seven shutout innings. He gave up six hits, walked two and struck out six. In that fifth inning, he gave up three straight singles to start the inning. On the third, he got help from Aaron Hicks who threw a runner out at the plate. The next batter hit into a double play. Ryan Pressly threw a perfect seventh and got the first two outs of the ninth inning. Caleb Thielbar recorded the final out of the top of the ninth inning, maintaining the shutout. Meanwhile, Bisons starter Scott Copeland was really dealing as well. He had a perfect game into the fifth inning when Brock Peterson walked. He gave up a single with one out in the seventh inning to lose the no-hitter. Ironically, it was an infield single by Josmil Pinto. The Red Wings did nothing in the eighth and the first two hitters of the ninth struck out. However, with two outs, Eddie Rosario walked. That brought Pinto to the plate, and he ended the game with a walk-off home run. The Red Wings are now 2-0 on the young season. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 4, Montgomery 3 Box Score Nick Burdi got another save opportunity in this one. Things got interesting, but the team was able to hang on for their second win of the season. The power bats showed up in this one too. Greg Peavey, who was the Twins minor league Rule 5 selection from the New York Mets organization, made his first start for the Lookouts. He gave up single runs in the first two innings, but provided his team with a quality start. He gave up two runs on six hits and a walk in 6.1 innings. He struck out six. Adrian Salcedo came on and got the final two outs of the seventh inning. Jake Reed was given the eighth inning. He gave up two hits and hit a batter, but he was able to get out of the inning without allowing a run. Then Nick Burdi came on for the ninth, given a two-run lead. He got the first two batters out, but then he walked the next two and gave up a run-scoring single to cut the lead to one. Fortunately, he ended the inning and the game with a strikeout, his second of the outing. In the fourth inning, Mike Gonzales hit a two-run double that tied the game. The 2-2 score remained until the seventh inning when Adam Brett Walker led off the inning with his first home run of the year, a line drive to right centerfield. Two outs later, Byron Buxton connected for his first home run of the year. Travis Harrison led the offense by collecting three hits, including a double. Miguel Sano was 1-3 with a walk and a stolen base. MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers 4, Charlotte 3 (11 innings) Box Score The Miracle needed a miracle, or at least some clutch hitting, as well as some extra innings to steal this win from Charlotte. The Miracle were down 3-0 heading into the seventh inning. Chih-Wei Hu started and was charged with two runs on three hits in five innings. He struck out six and did not issue a walk. Tim Shibuya pitched the sixth and seventh innings. He gave up one run on three hits and a walk. In the bottom of the seventh inning, Chad Christensen led off with a double. He later scored on a single off the bat of Engelb Vielma. The Miracle remained behind 3-1 until the bottom of the ninth. Down two, Michael Quesada led off with a walk, and Marcus Knecht “knechted” with a two-run, game-tying home run! Todd Van Steensel pitched a scoreless eighth inning. Brandon Peterson gave up two hits but no runs in his two innings. He struck out five. Madison Boer pitched a scoreless 11th inning for the Miracle. With one out in the bottom of the 11th inning, Marcus Knecht singled, which was followed by an Engelb Vielma single. With one out, a wild pitch advanced the runners to second and third, so Goodrum was intentionally walked. Alex Swim then singled in a run to give the Miracle the win. Knecht, a Candian outfielder signed by the Twins after he was released by the Blue Jays, went 3-4 with a walk and the home run. Vielma and Swim each had two hits. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 5, Kane County 3 Box Score The Kernels jumped to an early lead and got strong pitching to gain the three-game sweep in Kane County. They will head home and play their home opener on Sunday against Beloit. Left-hander Stephen Gonsalves made the start for the Kernels. He gave up a home run to River Falls native Marty Herum in the bottom of the first inning and then settled down. He went six innings and gave up just that one run. He gave up five hits, walked none and struck out nine for the win. Randy LeBlanc came on and threw two shutout innings, allowing two hits and striking out two. Trevor Hildenberger got the ninth. He was charged with two unearned runs but struck out two to end the game. After going 3-5 in his first game action on Friday, Jorge Fernandez had two doubles in four at-bats on Saturday. Zach Granite set the tone at the top of the order. The speedy outfielder went 2-3 with two walks. His speed came in to play. He had a hustle double. At one point, on second base. Nick Gordon tried to bunt for a base hit. He was barely thrown out at first base, but on the play Granite scored from second base easily. Gordon went 0-4 but drove in two runs. Trey Vavra hit his first double of the season in this game. He had 20 doubles in fifty games at Elizabethton last year after being drafted. T.J. White added a triple. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Taylor Rogers, Rochester Red Wings Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Marcus Knecht, Ft. Myers Miracle SUNDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Buffalo @ Rochester (12:35 CST) – LHP Jason Wheeler Chattanooga @ Montgomery (2:05 CST) – RHP DJ Baxendale Ft. Myers @ Charlotte (12:00 CST) – RHP Ethan Mildren Beloit @ Cedar Rapids (4:05 CST) – RHP Michael Cederoth Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss the Saturday games. Click here to view the article
  24. Jeremy Nygaard, Cody Christie and I are excited about the start of the 2015 Minor League season and are offering the 2015 Minnesota Twins Prospect Handbook in paperback right now at a 15% discount. Get your copy today, if you haven’t already. It’s also available as an electronic book which is available for immediate download. We have had two days’ worth of Twins Daily readers participating in this year’s Adopt-A-Prospect. At this point, feel free to adopt more players – whether you have or haven’t – and start by posting their initial bio/profile in the Adopt-A-Prospect 2015 forum. Let’s get to today’s report. The Rochester Red Wings announced following their game that Pat Dean would be taking Trevor May’s spot in their rotation RED WINGS REPORT Rochester 2, Buffalo 0 Box Score After being weathered out on Friday, the Rochester Red Wings played their home opener on Saturday afternoon against Buffalo. Fans in attendance watched quite the pitcher’s duel, and then were sent home in dramatic fashion. Lefty Taylor Rogers was given the nod to start and was fantastic. He didn’t allow a hit until the fifth inning. He finished the day with seven shutout innings. He gave up six hits, walked two and struck out six. In that fifth inning, he gave up three straight singles to start the inning. On the third, he got help from Aaron Hicks who threw a runner out at the plate. The next batter hit into a double play. Ryan Pressly threw a perfect seventh and got the first two outs of the ninth inning. Caleb Thielbar recorded the final out of the top of the ninth inning, maintaining the shutout. Meanwhile, Bisons starter Scott Copeland was really dealing as well. He had a perfect game into the fifth inning when Brock Peterson walked. He gave up a single with one out in the seventh inning to lose the no-hitter. Ironically, it was an infield single by Josmil Pinto. The Red Wings did nothing in the eighth and the first two hitters of the ninth struck out. However, with two outs, Eddie Rosario walked. That brought Pinto to the plate, and he ended the game with a walk-off home run. The Red Wings are now 2-0 on the young season. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 4, Montgomery 3 Box Score Nick Burdi got another save opportunity in this one. Things got interesting, but the team was able to hang on for their second win of the season. The power bats showed up in this one too. Greg Peavey, who was the Twins minor league Rule 5 selection from the New York Mets organization, made his first start for the Lookouts. He gave up single runs in the first two innings, but provided his team with a quality start. He gave up two runs on six hits and a walk in 6.1 innings. He struck out six. Adrian Salcedo came on and got the final two outs of the seventh inning. Jake Reed was given the eighth inning. He gave up two hits and hit a batter, but he was able to get out of the inning without allowing a run. Then Nick Burdi came on for the ninth, given a two-run lead. He got the first two batters out, but then he walked the next two and gave up a run-scoring single to cut the lead to one. Fortunately, he ended the inning and the game with a strikeout, his second of the outing. In the fourth inning, Mike Gonzales hit a two-run double that tied the game. The 2-2 score remained until the seventh inning when Adam Brett Walker led off the inning with his first home run of the year, a line drive to right centerfield. Two outs later, Byron Buxton connected for his first home run of the year. Travis Harrison led the offense by collecting three hits, including a double. Miguel Sano was 1-3 with a walk and a stolen base. MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers 4, Charlotte 3 (11 innings) Box Score The Miracle needed a miracle, or at least some clutch hitting, as well as some extra innings to steal this win from Charlotte. The Miracle were down 3-0 heading into the seventh inning. Chih-Wei Hu started and was charged with two runs on three hits in five innings. He struck out six and did not issue a walk. Tim Shibuya pitched the sixth and seventh innings. He gave up one run on three hits and a walk. In the bottom of the seventh inning, Chad Christensen led off with a double. He later scored on a single off the bat of Engelb Vielma. The Miracle remained behind 3-1 until the bottom of the ninth. Down two, Michael Quesada led off with a walk, and Marcus Knecht “knechted” with a two-run, game-tying home run! Todd Van Steensel pitched a scoreless eighth inning. Brandon Peterson gave up two hits but no runs in his two innings. He struck out five. Madison Boer pitched a scoreless 11th inning for the Miracle. With one out in the bottom of the 11th inning, Marcus Knecht singled, which was followed by an Engelb Vielma single. With one out, a wild pitch advanced the runners to second and third, so Goodrum was intentionally walked. Alex Swim then singled in a run to give the Miracle the win. Knecht, a Candian outfielder signed by the Twins after he was released by the Blue Jays, went 3-4 with a walk and the home run. Vielma and Swim each had two hits. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 5, Kane County 3 Box Score The Kernels jumped to an early lead and got strong pitching to gain the three-game sweep in Kane County. They will head home and play their home opener on Sunday against Beloit. Left-hander Stephen Gonsalves made the start for the Kernels. He gave up a home run to River Falls native Marty Herum in the bottom of the first inning and then settled down. He went six innings and gave up just that one run. He gave up five hits, walked none and struck out nine for the win. Randy LeBlanc came on and threw two shutout innings, allowing two hits and striking out two. Trevor Hildenberger got the ninth. He was charged with two unearned runs but struck out two to end the game. After going 3-5 in his first game action on Friday, Jorge Fernandez had two doubles in four at-bats on Saturday. Zach Granite set the tone at the top of the order. The speedy outfielder went 2-3 with two walks. His speed came in to play. He had a hustle double. At one point, on second base. Nick Gordon tried to bunt for a base hit. He was barely thrown out at first base, but on the play Granite scored from second base easily. Gordon went 0-4 but drove in two runs. Trey Vavra hit his first double of the season in this game. He had 20 doubles in fifty games at Elizabethton last year after being drafted. T.J. White added a triple. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Taylor Rogers, Rochester Red Wings Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Marcus Knecht, Ft. Myers Miracle SUNDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Buffalo @ Rochester (12:35 CST) – LHP Jason Wheeler Chattanooga @ Montgomery (2:05 CST) – RHP DJ Baxendale Ft. Myers @ Charlotte (12:00 CST) – RHP Ethan Mildren Beloit @ Cedar Rapids (4:05 CST) – RHP Michael Cederoth Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss the Saturday games.
  25. 40-Man Roster These players get a couple of days to report to minor league camp. Max Kepler - 1B, OF Non-Roster Invites These players are expected to head across the parking lot. In fact, several of them went right to work after learning the news, fitting into the minor league drills. Jose Berrios - RH SP Byron Buxton - Outfielder Tyler Duffey – RH SP Taylor Rogers – LH SP Ryan O’Rourke – LH RP Heiker Meneses – Infielder Mitcher Garver - Catcher Stuart Turner - Catcher The Twins spring training roster is now at 52 players. UPDATE - With the four additional moves, the Twins roster is now at 48 and just 11 of them are non-roster players.
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