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  1. Plenty of offensive firepower was on display tonight throughout the Twins farm system. Both the Wind Surge and Kernels put up double-digits with multi players having gaudy stat lines. Aaron Rozek was the standout arm and Cedar Rapids continued its torrid start to the season. Transactions: RHP Cole Sands added to Minnesota as 27th man OF Kennie Taylor promoted to Double-A Wichita OF Kyle Fedko promoted to High-A Cedar Rapids OF Luis Baez transferred to Single-A Fort Myers SAINTS SENTINEL Columbus 7, St. Paul 4 Box Score Jacob Faria made the start for the afternoon tilt today. St. Paul got four innings of work from their starter and Faria allowed three runs, only one earned, on five hits while striking out four and walking one. Down early after a three-run 2nd inning for the Clippers, St. Paul knotted things in the 5th inning. Caleb Hamilton scored on an Ernie Yake ground out before Elliot Soto singled in both Yake and Jermaine Palacios. Giving a run back immediately in the bottom half of the 5th inning, the Saints saw the gap widen to four before answering with a run of their own in the 9th inning. Roy Morales drove in Kevin Merrell with a single, but that’s all the rally amounted to. Palacios was the lone Saints hitter to record two hits on the day, one of which was his fifth double. WIND SURGE WISDOM Wichita 3, NW Arkansas 0 Box Score Following the fun outing against his brother last time out, Louie Varland was back for a more normal contest. He cruised through the first few innings before running into trouble in the 5th inning. In total, Varland worked six innings allowing seven hits and four runs. He picked up seven strikeouts and walked no one. Scoreless through the first two frames, the Wind Surge got their first run following a steal of third base by DaShawn Keirsey. With the ball getting away on the throw, he was able to move up ninety feet for the game’s first run. Matt Wallner then continued his hot stretch with a laced double to right scoring both Edouard Julien and Spencer Steer. Although Austin Martin hasn’t hit for Wichita this season, middle infielder Spencer Steer absolutely has. Crushing a solo blast in the 5th inning, Steer picked up his fifth of the season. Watching their lead be wiped out by the 6th inning, the Wind Surge got back to adding. In the 7th inning Alex Isola drove in Julien with a single before Andrew Bechtold added a double to plate Isola. Dennis Ortega followed with a double of his own to drive in Wallner and Bechtold, and then Leobaldo Cabrera cleared the bases with his second dinger of the season. Steven Cruz was great in relief of Varland giving the Wind Surge two scoreless innings allowing just one hit and picking up three strikeouts. Isola, Wallner, Cabrera, and Kerisey all had two hits tonight for Wichita. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 13, Peoria 1 Box Score It was Aaron Rozek on the bump tonight for the Kernels and he turned in nothing short of a dominant outing. Working five scoreless innings, Rozek allowed just three hits and no runs or walks while picking up nine punchouts. Backing up their starter, the Cedar Rapids bats put up a crooked number early. Seth Gray roped his fifth double of the season in the top of the 4th inning to plate Jeferson Morales and Christian Encarnacion-Strand. Wander Javier then lifted a single to right field scoring Gray on the play. Adding again in a big way, the 5th inning featured another Kernels outburst and this one was a home run party. Gray clobbered his second of the season before Jair Camargo hit his fifth, and Javier launched his second. Then Encarnacion-Strand decided he’d keep the ball in the park, driving a single to bring home both Will Holland and Anthony Prato. Cedar Rapids picked up another run in the 8th inning with Holland scoring on a wild pitch. They did give that one back on a solo shot in the bottom half. It didn’t matter much however, as the 9th inning saw a four-run explosion in the form of a Camargo single to score Willie Joe Garry Jr. and Javier’s second homer of the night. Javier lifted a three-run shot and what was a big league became a laugher. The Kernels recorded 14 hits in this one and got multi-hit efforts from Prato, Encarnacion-Strand, Gray, Camargo, and Javier. MUSSEL MATTERS Postponed Fort Myers’ game against Palm Beach was postponed on Thursday night. It will be made up as a double-header tomorrow afternoon. TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS OF THE DAY Pitcher of the Day – Aaron Rozek (Cedar Rapids) - 5.0 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 9 K Hitter of the Day – Wander Javier (Cedar Rapids) - 3-5, 2 R, 5 RBI, 2 HR(3) PROSPECT SUMMARY We will again keep tabs on the Twins top prospects. You’ll probably read about them in the team sections, but if they aren’t there, you’ll see how they did here. Here’s a look at how the current Twins Daily Top 20 performed: #1 - Austin Martin (Wichita) - #2 - Royce Lewis (Minnesota) - 1-4, K #3 - Jose Miranda (Minnesotal) - 0-4, 2 K #4 - Jordan Balazovic (St. Paul) - Did Not Pitch #5 - Joe Ryan (Minnesota) - Did Not Pitch #6 - Matt Canterino (Wichita) - Did Not Pitch #7 - Jhoan Duran (Minnesota) - Did Not Pitch #8 - Simeon Woods Richardson (Wichita) - #9 - Josh Winder (Minnesota) - 3.1 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 3 ER, 3 BB, 2 K #10 - Noah Miller (Ft. Myers) - Postponed #11 - Gilberto Celestino (Minnesota) - 0-1, K #12 - Matt Wallner (Wichita) - 2-4, R, 2 RBI, 2B, 2 K #13 - Cole Sands (Minnesota) - 2.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 4 K #14 - Louie Varland (Wichita) - 6.0 IP, 7 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 0 BB, 7 K #15 - Emmanuel Rodriguez (Ft. Myers) - Postponed #16 - Ronny Hendriquez (St. Paul) - Did Not Pitch #17 - Blayne Enlow (Wichita) - IL #18 - Spencer Steer (Wichita) - 1-3, 2 R, RBI, HR(5), 2 BB, K #19 - Edouard Julien (Wichita) - 0-2, 2 R, 3 BB, 2 K #20 - Steve Hajjar (Ft. Myers) - Postponed FRIDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS St. Paul @ Columbus (6:05PM CST) - RHP Jordan Balazovic Wichita @ NW Arkansas (7:05PM CST) - RHP Simeon Woods-Richardson Cedar Rapids @ Peoria (6:35PM CST) - RHP Cade Povich Palm Beach @ Fort Myers (3:30PM CST) - TBD/TBD Please feel free to ask questions and discuss Thursday’s games! It sure is exciting to have all four Twins full-season affiliates back and playing. View full article
  2. Transactions: RHP Cole Sands added to Minnesota as 27th man OF Kennie Taylor promoted to Double-A Wichita OF Kyle Fedko promoted to High-A Cedar Rapids OF Luis Baez transferred to Single-A Fort Myers SAINTS SENTINEL Columbus 7, St. Paul 4 Box Score Jacob Faria made the start for the afternoon tilt today. St. Paul got four innings of work from their starter and Faria allowed three runs, only one earned, on five hits while striking out four and walking one. Down early after a three-run 2nd inning for the Clippers, St. Paul knotted things in the 5th inning. Caleb Hamilton scored on an Ernie Yake ground out before Elliot Soto singled in both Yake and Jermaine Palacios. Giving a run back immediately in the bottom half of the 5th inning, the Saints saw the gap widen to four before answering with a run of their own in the 9th inning. Roy Morales drove in Kevin Merrell with a single, but that’s all the rally amounted to. Palacios was the lone Saints hitter to record two hits on the day, one of which was his fifth double. WIND SURGE WISDOM Wichita 3, NW Arkansas 0 Box Score Following the fun outing against his brother last time out, Louie Varland was back for a more normal contest. He cruised through the first few innings before running into trouble in the 5th inning. In total, Varland worked six innings allowing seven hits and four runs. He picked up seven strikeouts and walked no one. Scoreless through the first two frames, the Wind Surge got their first run following a steal of third base by DaShawn Keirsey. With the ball getting away on the throw, he was able to move up ninety feet for the game’s first run. Matt Wallner then continued his hot stretch with a laced double to right scoring both Edouard Julien and Spencer Steer. Although Austin Martin hasn’t hit for Wichita this season, middle infielder Spencer Steer absolutely has. Crushing a solo blast in the 5th inning, Steer picked up his fifth of the season. Watching their lead be wiped out by the 6th inning, the Wind Surge got back to adding. In the 7th inning Alex Isola drove in Julien with a single before Andrew Bechtold added a double to plate Isola. Dennis Ortega followed with a double of his own to drive in Wallner and Bechtold, and then Leobaldo Cabrera cleared the bases with his second dinger of the season. Steven Cruz was great in relief of Varland giving the Wind Surge two scoreless innings allowing just one hit and picking up three strikeouts. Isola, Wallner, Cabrera, and Kerisey all had two hits tonight for Wichita. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 13, Peoria 1 Box Score It was Aaron Rozek on the bump tonight for the Kernels and he turned in nothing short of a dominant outing. Working five scoreless innings, Rozek allowed just three hits and no runs or walks while picking up nine punchouts. Backing up their starter, the Cedar Rapids bats put up a crooked number early. Seth Gray roped his fifth double of the season in the top of the 4th inning to plate Jeferson Morales and Christian Encarnacion-Strand. Wander Javier then lifted a single to right field scoring Gray on the play. Adding again in a big way, the 5th inning featured another Kernels outburst and this one was a home run party. Gray clobbered his second of the season before Jair Camargo hit his fifth, and Javier launched his second. Then Encarnacion-Strand decided he’d keep the ball in the park, driving a single to bring home both Will Holland and Anthony Prato. Cedar Rapids picked up another run in the 8th inning with Holland scoring on a wild pitch. They did give that one back on a solo shot in the bottom half. It didn’t matter much however, as the 9th inning saw a four-run explosion in the form of a Camargo single to score Willie Joe Garry Jr. and Javier’s second homer of the night. Javier lifted a three-run shot and what was a big league became a laugher. The Kernels recorded 14 hits in this one and got multi-hit efforts from Prato, Encarnacion-Strand, Gray, Camargo, and Javier. MUSSEL MATTERS Postponed Fort Myers’ game against Palm Beach was postponed on Thursday night. It will be made up as a double-header tomorrow afternoon. TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS OF THE DAY Pitcher of the Day – Aaron Rozek (Cedar Rapids) - 5.0 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 9 K Hitter of the Day – Wander Javier (Cedar Rapids) - 3-5, 2 R, 5 RBI, 2 HR(3) PROSPECT SUMMARY We will again keep tabs on the Twins top prospects. You’ll probably read about them in the team sections, but if they aren’t there, you’ll see how they did here. Here’s a look at how the current Twins Daily Top 20 performed: #1 - Austin Martin (Wichita) - #2 - Royce Lewis (Minnesota) - 1-4, K #3 - Jose Miranda (Minnesotal) - 0-4, 2 K #4 - Jordan Balazovic (St. Paul) - Did Not Pitch #5 - Joe Ryan (Minnesota) - Did Not Pitch #6 - Matt Canterino (Wichita) - Did Not Pitch #7 - Jhoan Duran (Minnesota) - Did Not Pitch #8 - Simeon Woods Richardson (Wichita) - #9 - Josh Winder (Minnesota) - 3.1 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 3 ER, 3 BB, 2 K #10 - Noah Miller (Ft. Myers) - Postponed #11 - Gilberto Celestino (Minnesota) - 0-1, K #12 - Matt Wallner (Wichita) - 2-4, R, 2 RBI, 2B, 2 K #13 - Cole Sands (Minnesota) - 2.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 4 K #14 - Louie Varland (Wichita) - 6.0 IP, 7 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 0 BB, 7 K #15 - Emmanuel Rodriguez (Ft. Myers) - Postponed #16 - Ronny Hendriquez (St. Paul) - Did Not Pitch #17 - Blayne Enlow (Wichita) - IL #18 - Spencer Steer (Wichita) - 1-3, 2 R, RBI, HR(5), 2 BB, K #19 - Edouard Julien (Wichita) - 0-2, 2 R, 3 BB, 2 K #20 - Steve Hajjar (Ft. Myers) - Postponed FRIDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS St. Paul @ Columbus (6:05PM CST) - RHP Jordan Balazovic Wichita @ NW Arkansas (7:05PM CST) - RHP Simeon Woods-Richardson Cedar Rapids @ Peoria (6:35PM CST) - RHP Cade Povich Palm Beach @ Fort Myers (3:30PM CST) - TBD/TBD Please feel free to ask questions and discuss Thursday’s games! It sure is exciting to have all four Twins full-season affiliates back and playing.
  3. The Minnesota Twins farm system is replete with talent. But even so, some names haven't gotten the attention they deserve. Here are a few such names. Jair Camargo, C High-A Cedar Rapids stats: 28 PA, .333/.357/.741, 3 HR, 2 2B, .407 iso, .429 BABIP, 32.1% K-BB% Camargo is a stocky catching prospect who was originally obtained by the Twins in February 2020 along with Kenta Maeda as part of the deal that sent Brusdar Graterol to the Los Angeles Dodgers. Seen as simply a throw-in at the time, he has grown from a light-hitting teenager to a 22-year-old with legitimate pop. Prior to joining the Twins system, Camargo smacked 18 doubles in 79 games with the Dodgers Single-A affiliate in 2019, suggesting he had some power to unlock with appropriate tweaks to his swing. Well, unlock some power he has as 16 of his 27 career minor league home runs have come over his last 78 games, including three in his first seven games this season. (Note: Camargo, like all minor league athletes, did not play games during the 2020 season due to the pandemic.) His numbers are bolstered at the moment by small sample sizes and an unsustainably high BABIP, but the evolution he has displayed since joining the Twins is encouraging and suggestive of changes that will stick. However, Camargo’s game is not without its faults. His 35.7% strikeout rate is exceedingly high for the low minor leagues and his microscopic 3.6% walk rate is not only suggestive of poor discipline overall but has also prevented him from ever posting an OPS over .719. Additionally, he provides little to write home about defensively behind the plate. But among the Twins’ catching prospects, Camargo’s bat is perhaps the most exciting. Cedar Rapids Starting Pitchers LHP Aaron Rozek: 10 IP, 8 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 13 K LHP Cade Povich: 9 2/3 IP, 6 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 17 K RHP Sawyer Gipson-Long: 9 IP, 5 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 14 K LHP Brent Headrick: 9 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 16 K The Kernels starting rotation has eviscerated opponents through each of their first two starts this season. They own a combined 1.19 ERA with a 15:1 K:BB ratio and have surrendered only a single home run. And only one of them—former Nebraska Cornhusker and 2021 third round pick Cade Povich—is universally considered a top prospect. At this time last season, Rozek was pitching in Indy ball. Headrick was selected in the ninth round in 2019 out of Illinois State. Gipson-Long—who, full disclosure, I voted as the TwinsDaily preseason Minor League Pitcher of the Year—was taken in the sixth round of the same draft. The Twins minor league coaching staff has developed all four into legitimate threats to appear at Target Field one day, which is a great accomplishment for all parties involved. John Stankiewicz, RHP Low-A Fort Myers stats: 11 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 19 K Stankiewicz signed with the Twins as an undrafted free agent during the summer of 2020 and all he has done since is strike batters out. In 36 1/3 minor league innings, the former Atlantic 10 Pitcher of the Year has struck out 49 batters—he has a 47.5% K rate through his first two starts this spring—and owns a 2.48 ERA. According to Eric Longenhagen at FanGraphs, Stankiewicz owns two pitches that could play at the MLB-level. His fastball sits in the low-90s while his slider is, get this, considered a plus offering. For an undrafted free agent, Stankiewicz has already exceeded expectations. Though, if he continues to progress at his current pace, he may just blow them out of the water. Anthony Prato, INF High-A Cedar Rapids stats: 47 PA, .351/.468/.514, 1 HR, 1 2B, 1 3B, .162 iso, .480 BABIP, 6.4 K-BB% Prato’s bat doesn’t have pop. Defensively, he doesn’t necessarily do anything that stands out. However, what the 2019 7th round pick does exceptionally well is get on base and steal bases. Since beginning his minor league career, Prato has never posted an OBP below .370 and has successfully stolen 15 bases in 19 attempts. In a sense, Prato is the free version of Edouard Julien, a fellow 2019 Twins draftee who rocketed up prospect boards last summer due to his uncanny ability to reach base. Julien has more power—18 home runs and 28 doubles in his career compared to Prato’s three and 14, respectively—is a more prolific base stealer (35 steals in 40 attempts), and is a sounder glove in the field. However, Prato could act as a capable facsimile in the right situation. What are your thoughts on these unheralded prospects. Are there other Twins minor leaguers who are not getting as much attention as they should? Leave your COMMENTS below. View full article
  4. Jair Camargo, C High-A Cedar Rapids stats: 28 PA, .333/.357/.741, 3 HR, 2 2B, .407 iso, .429 BABIP, 32.1% K-BB% Camargo is a stocky catching prospect who was originally obtained by the Twins in February 2020 along with Kenta Maeda as part of the deal that sent Brusdar Graterol to the Los Angeles Dodgers. Seen as simply a throw-in at the time, he has grown from a light-hitting teenager to a 22-year-old with legitimate pop. Prior to joining the Twins system, Camargo smacked 18 doubles in 79 games with the Dodgers Single-A affiliate in 2019, suggesting he had some power to unlock with appropriate tweaks to his swing. Well, unlock some power he has as 16 of his 27 career minor league home runs have come over his last 78 games, including three in his first seven games this season. (Note: Camargo, like all minor league athletes, did not play games during the 2020 season due to the pandemic.) His numbers are bolstered at the moment by small sample sizes and an unsustainably high BABIP, but the evolution he has displayed since joining the Twins is encouraging and suggestive of changes that will stick. However, Camargo’s game is not without its faults. His 35.7% strikeout rate is exceedingly high for the low minor leagues and his microscopic 3.6% walk rate is not only suggestive of poor discipline overall but has also prevented him from ever posting an OPS over .719. Additionally, he provides little to write home about defensively behind the plate. But among the Twins’ catching prospects, Camargo’s bat is perhaps the most exciting. Cedar Rapids Starting Pitchers LHP Aaron Rozek: 10 IP, 8 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 13 K LHP Cade Povich: 9 2/3 IP, 6 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 17 K RHP Sawyer Gipson-Long: 9 IP, 5 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 14 K LHP Brent Headrick: 9 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 16 K The Kernels starting rotation has eviscerated opponents through each of their first two starts this season. They own a combined 1.19 ERA with a 15:1 K:BB ratio and have surrendered only a single home run. And only one of them—former Nebraska Cornhusker and 2021 third round pick Cade Povich—is universally considered a top prospect. At this time last season, Rozek was pitching in Indy ball. Headrick was selected in the ninth round in 2019 out of Illinois State. Gipson-Long—who, full disclosure, I voted as the TwinsDaily preseason Minor League Pitcher of the Year—was taken in the sixth round of the same draft. The Twins minor league coaching staff has developed all four into legitimate threats to appear at Target Field one day, which is a great accomplishment for all parties involved. John Stankiewicz, RHP Low-A Fort Myers stats: 11 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 19 K Stankiewicz signed with the Twins as an undrafted free agent during the summer of 2020 and all he has done since is strike batters out. In 36 1/3 minor league innings, the former Atlantic 10 Pitcher of the Year has struck out 49 batters—he has a 47.5% K rate through his first two starts this spring—and owns a 2.48 ERA. According to Eric Longenhagen at FanGraphs, Stankiewicz owns two pitches that could play at the MLB-level. His fastball sits in the low-90s while his slider is, get this, considered a plus offering. For an undrafted free agent, Stankiewicz has already exceeded expectations. Though, if he continues to progress at his current pace, he may just blow them out of the water. Anthony Prato, INF High-A Cedar Rapids stats: 47 PA, .351/.468/.514, 1 HR, 1 2B, 1 3B, .162 iso, .480 BABIP, 6.4 K-BB% Prato’s bat doesn’t have pop. Defensively, he doesn’t necessarily do anything that stands out. However, what the 2019 7th round pick does exceptionally well is get on base and steal bases. Since beginning his minor league career, Prato has never posted an OBP below .370 and has successfully stolen 15 bases in 19 attempts. In a sense, Prato is the free version of Edouard Julien, a fellow 2019 Twins draftee who rocketed up prospect boards last summer due to his uncanny ability to reach base. Julien has more power—18 home runs and 28 doubles in his career compared to Prato’s three and 14, respectively—is a more prolific base stealer (35 steals in 40 attempts), and is a sounder glove in the field. However, Prato could act as a capable facsimile in the right situation. What are your thoughts on these unheralded prospects. Are there other Twins minor leaguers who are not getting as much attention as they should? Leave your COMMENTS below.
  5. Although the Twins suffered another bad loss at the hands of the Boston Red Sox, the Twins minor-league affiliates had better games on Sunday afternoon as the Saints, Wind Surge, and Kernels all won their games. The Mighty Mussels lost but played a close game that went down to the final pitch. TRANSACTIONS There were no transactions in the Twins' minor leagues on Sunday. SAINTS SENTINEL St. Paul 5, Indianapolis 1 Box Score SP: Jake Faria - 4 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 5 K HR: None Multi-hit games: Royce Lewis (2-4, R, RBI (5)), David Banuelos (2-3, 2B, R, RBI (3)) The Saints finished their first homestand against the Indianapolis Indians winning 5-1 Sunday thanks to a strong start from Jake Faria and five scoreless innings from the bullpen. The offense cooled off from Saturday’s 16-13 victory over Indianapolis. The scoring started for the Saints with an RBI double from catcher David Banuelos in the bottom of the third driving in second baseman Elliot Soto. Two at-bats later, Royce Lewis drove in Banuelos to make it a 2-1 Saints lead. In the bottom of the sixth, the Saints were able to tack on two more runs thanks to a groundout from left fielder Jake Cave that scored Lewis. In the next at-bat, designated hitter Chance Sisco reached base on an error that scored first baseman Curtis Terry, making it a 4-1 Saints game. The final run of the game came again from the bat of Cave as he had another ground out that scored center fielder Mark Contreras, tallying the final run of the Saints 5-1 victory. Faria showed great improvement in his second start for the Saints Sunday, decreasing the number of walks he surrendered from five last Sunday against Louisville to two today. After completing four innings, Faria was once again replaced by Chi Chi Gonzalez. Gonzalez took on the next three innings for the Saints keeping Indianapolis hitless and only allowing two base runners on walks. WIND SURGE WISDOM Wichita 5, Northwest Arkansas 1 Box Score SP: Brandon Lawson - 3 2/3 IP, 7 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 1 K HR: Matt Wallner (1), Michael Helman (1) Multi-hit games: Kevin Merrell (2-4, 2 RBI (3), K) After starting the season 0-3, the Wind Surge have gone 4-2 and won this week's series against the Northwest Arkansas Naturals. The final score for the Wind Surge on Sunday was the exact same as the Saints with the 5-1 victory over the Naturals. The Wind Surge had a strong outing from starter Brandon Lawson. He provided the rotation 3 2/3 innings pitched against the Naturals allowing nine base runners but somehow giving up only one run. The Wind Surge bullpen only allowed three base runners in the remaining 5 1/3 innings of the game. On the offensive side, Wind Surge right fielder Matt Wallner and third baseman Michael Helman each hit their first home runs of the season to give the Wind Surge insurance runs. Shortstop and Wind Surge newcomer Kevin Merrell had his first multi-hit game of the season going 2-for-4 and driving in a couple of runs. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 6, Quad Cities 2 Box Score SP: Aaron Rozek 5 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 7 K HR: None Multi-hit games: Charles Mack (3-4, 2 R, 2B, RBI (5)), Anthony Prato (2-5, 2 RBI (10) 2 K), Kennie Taylor (2-3, R, 3B (1), BB, K) The Kernels took home their seventh win of the season on Sunday to finish out their series against the Quad Cities River Bandits. Aaron Rozek made his second start of the season for the Kernels and pitched a phenomenal five innings allowing only three base runners, and one unearned run while striking out seven batters. Even with Christian Encarnacion-Strand out of the lineup for the Kernels on Sunday, their bats were still able to produce a high-scoring game. The hitting surge for the Kernels was led by Charles Mack who went 3-for-4 and brought his batting average for the season up to .533 in 15 at-bats. Also keeping up his hot streak for the Kernels was Anthony Prato who had two hits and two runs batted in to bring his RBI total to ten in the Kernels' first nine games. The bullpen pitched an effective game after Rozek’s departure having four different relievers come in for an inning each. The Kernels bullpen totaled four innings pitched, four hits, one run, five strikeouts and no walks Sunday afternoon. MUSSEL MATTERS Fort Myers 3, Jupiter 4 Box Score SP: Travis Adams 5 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 7 K HR: Jake Rucker (1) Multi-hit games: Mikey Perez (2-4, R, K), Ernie Yake (2-4, R, K) The Mighty Mussels were the only Twins affiliate to drop a game on Sunday. The Mussels were trailing the Jupiter Hammerheads 4-1 going into the bottom of the ninth. They were able to score two runs and make it a close game until the final out. Mussels starter Travis Adams once again had a great start for his teammates going five innings, allowing only three base runners, and striking out seven. The Hammerheads were able to score three runs against Mussels reliever Jaylen Nowlin in his second inning of work in the top of the seventh. Coming out of the bullpen for the Mussels after Nowlin was Regi Grace who only gave up one run in his 2 1/3 innings pitched. On the offensive side Mussels' third baseman Jake Rucker hit his first home run of the season, a two-run shot in the bottom of the ninth that brought the Mussels a run away from tying the game. :Left fielder Kyler Fedko went hitless during Sunday’s game but reached base twice on walks, maintaining his OPS at 1.238 for the season. TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS OF THE DAY Pitcher of the Day – Travis Adams (Ft. Myers) - 5 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 7 K Hitter of the Day – Charles Mack (Cedar Rapids) - 3-4, 2 R, 2B, RBI (5) PROSPECT SUMMARY We will again keep tabs on the Twins' top prospects. You’ll probably read about them in the team sections, but if they aren’t there, you’ll see how they did here. Here’s a look at how the current Twins Daily Top 20 performed: #1 - Austin Martin (Wichita) - 1-5, SB (6), K #2 - Royce Lewis (St. Paul) - 2-4, R, RBI (5) #3 - Jose Miranda (St. Paul) - 0-3, BB #10 - Noah Miller (Ft. Myers) - 0-3, 2 BB, 3 K, SB (2) #12 - Matt Wallner (Wichita) - 1-3, R, HR (1), RBI (2), BB, K #18 - Spencer Steer (Wichita) - 0-4 TUESDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS All Twins Minor League Affiliates are off on Monday and will resume their games on Tuesday, April 19. The only Monday in which there will be minor-league games is July 4th (and some for the Saints in September). St. Paul @ Toledo (5:35 PM CST) - Midland @ Wichita (7:05 PM CST) - RHP Matt Canterino Peoria @ Cedar Rapids (6:35 PM CST) - Fort Myers @ Dunedin (6:30 PM CST) - Please feel free to ask questions and discuss Sunday’s games as the second weekend of the minor and major league seasons has concluded. View full article
  6. The Minnesota Twins scored just one run in a loss at Boston, marking the fourth time already this season (nine games) they’ve scored less than two runs in a game. Featured in this video are Miguel Sanó, Carlos Correa, Max Kepler, Royce Lewis, Michael Helman, Matt Wallner, Anthony Prato, Aaron Rozek and more.
  7. The Minnesota Twins scored just one run in a loss at Boston, marking the fourth time already this season (nine games) they’ve scored less than two runs in a game. Featured in this video are Miguel Sanó, Carlos Correa, Max Kepler, Royce Lewis, Michael Helman, Matt Wallner, Anthony Prato, Aaron Rozek and more. View full video
  8. TRANSACTIONS There were no transactions in the Twins' minor leagues on Sunday. SAINTS SENTINEL St. Paul 5, Indianapolis 1 Box Score SP: Jake Faria - 4 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 5 K HR: None Multi-hit games: Royce Lewis (2-4, R, RBI (5)), David Banuelos (2-3, 2B, R, RBI (3)) The Saints finished their first homestand against the Indianapolis Indians winning 5-1 Sunday thanks to a strong start from Jake Faria and five scoreless innings from the bullpen. The offense cooled off from Saturday’s 16-13 victory over Indianapolis. The scoring started for the Saints with an RBI double from catcher David Banuelos in the bottom of the third driving in second baseman Elliot Soto. Two at-bats later, Royce Lewis drove in Banuelos to make it a 2-1 Saints lead. In the bottom of the sixth, the Saints were able to tack on two more runs thanks to a groundout from left fielder Jake Cave that scored Lewis. In the next at-bat, designated hitter Chance Sisco reached base on an error that scored first baseman Curtis Terry, making it a 4-1 Saints game. The final run of the game came again from the bat of Cave as he had another ground out that scored center fielder Mark Contreras, tallying the final run of the Saints 5-1 victory. Faria showed great improvement in his second start for the Saints Sunday, decreasing the number of walks he surrendered from five last Sunday against Louisville to two today. After completing four innings, Faria was once again replaced by Chi Chi Gonzalez. Gonzalez took on the next three innings for the Saints keeping Indianapolis hitless and only allowing two base runners on walks. WIND SURGE WISDOM Wichita 5, Northwest Arkansas 1 Box Score SP: Brandon Lawson - 3 2/3 IP, 7 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 1 K HR: Matt Wallner (1), Michael Helman (1) Multi-hit games: Kevin Merrell (2-4, 2 RBI (3), K) After starting the season 0-3, the Wind Surge have gone 4-2 and won this week's series against the Northwest Arkansas Naturals. The final score for the Wind Surge on Sunday was the exact same as the Saints with the 5-1 victory over the Naturals. The Wind Surge had a strong outing from starter Brandon Lawson. He provided the rotation 3 2/3 innings pitched against the Naturals allowing nine base runners but somehow giving up only one run. The Wind Surge bullpen only allowed three base runners in the remaining 5 1/3 innings of the game. On the offensive side, Wind Surge right fielder Matt Wallner and third baseman Michael Helman each hit their first home runs of the season to give the Wind Surge insurance runs. Shortstop and Wind Surge newcomer Kevin Merrell had his first multi-hit game of the season going 2-for-4 and driving in a couple of runs. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 6, Quad Cities 2 Box Score SP: Aaron Rozek 5 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 7 K HR: None Multi-hit games: Charles Mack (3-4, 2 R, 2B, RBI (5)), Anthony Prato (2-5, 2 RBI (10) 2 K), Kennie Taylor (2-3, R, 3B (1), BB, K) The Kernels took home their seventh win of the season on Sunday to finish out their series against the Quad Cities River Bandits. Aaron Rozek made his second start of the season for the Kernels and pitched a phenomenal five innings allowing only three base runners, and one unearned run while striking out seven batters. Even with Christian Encarnacion-Strand out of the lineup for the Kernels on Sunday, their bats were still able to produce a high-scoring game. The hitting surge for the Kernels was led by Charles Mack who went 3-for-4 and brought his batting average for the season up to .533 in 15 at-bats. Also keeping up his hot streak for the Kernels was Anthony Prato who had two hits and two runs batted in to bring his RBI total to ten in the Kernels' first nine games. The bullpen pitched an effective game after Rozek’s departure having four different relievers come in for an inning each. The Kernels bullpen totaled four innings pitched, four hits, one run, five strikeouts and no walks Sunday afternoon. MUSSEL MATTERS Fort Myers 3, Jupiter 4 Box Score SP: Travis Adams 5 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 7 K HR: Jake Rucker (1) Multi-hit games: Mikey Perez (2-4, R, K), Ernie Yake (2-4, R, K) The Mighty Mussels were the only Twins affiliate to drop a game on Sunday. The Mussels were trailing the Jupiter Hammerheads 4-1 going into the bottom of the ninth. They were able to score two runs and make it a close game until the final out. Mussels starter Travis Adams once again had a great start for his teammates going five innings, allowing only three base runners, and striking out seven. The Hammerheads were able to score three runs against Mussels reliever Jaylen Nowlin in his second inning of work in the top of the seventh. Coming out of the bullpen for the Mussels after Nowlin was Regi Grace who only gave up one run in his 2 1/3 innings pitched. On the offensive side Mussels' third baseman Jake Rucker hit his first home run of the season, a two-run shot in the bottom of the ninth that brought the Mussels a run away from tying the game. :Left fielder Kyler Fedko went hitless during Sunday’s game but reached base twice on walks, maintaining his OPS at 1.238 for the season. TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS OF THE DAY Pitcher of the Day – Travis Adams (Ft. Myers) - 5 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 7 K Hitter of the Day – Charles Mack (Cedar Rapids) - 3-4, 2 R, 2B, RBI (5) PROSPECT SUMMARY We will again keep tabs on the Twins' top prospects. You’ll probably read about them in the team sections, but if they aren’t there, you’ll see how they did here. Here’s a look at how the current Twins Daily Top 20 performed: #1 - Austin Martin (Wichita) - 1-5, SB (6), K #2 - Royce Lewis (St. Paul) - 2-4, R, RBI (5) #3 - Jose Miranda (St. Paul) - 0-3, BB #10 - Noah Miller (Ft. Myers) - 0-3, 2 BB, 3 K, SB (2) #12 - Matt Wallner (Wichita) - 1-3, R, HR (1), RBI (2), BB, K #18 - Spencer Steer (Wichita) - 0-4 TUESDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS All Twins Minor League Affiliates are off on Monday and will resume their games on Tuesday, April 19. The only Monday in which there will be minor-league games is July 4th (and some for the Saints in September). St. Paul @ Toledo (5:35 PM CST) - Midland @ Wichita (7:05 PM CST) - RHP Matt Canterino Peoria @ Cedar Rapids (6:35 PM CST) - Fort Myers @ Dunedin (6:30 PM CST) - Please feel free to ask questions and discuss Sunday’s games as the second weekend of the minor and major league seasons has concluded.
  9. Sure, the Saints played their fourth game of the season tonight, but for the Wind Surge, the Kernels and the Mighty Mussels, Happy Opening Day!! The Twins played an exciting opener at Target Field, and there were some good games and strong performances in the minor leagues The daily Minor League Reports have been back for three days already, but tonight feels a little more special. It is Opening Night for the Wichita Wind Surge, the Cedar Rapids Kernels, and the Ft. Myers Mighty Mussels. There was a big-time Minnesota connection in Wichita. The Kernels had a hitter make a very strong first impression. A couple of first-rounders had big nights in Ft. Myers and they held on for a close win. Oh, and the Saints got another win as a former prospect returned to the organization and pitched well. Let’s get to the report. As always, please feel free to discuss and ask questions. TRANSACTIONS On Friday, Cedar Rapids announced that seven players have been added to their roster, but on the Injured List. Added to the 60-Day IL are right-handed pitchers Jon Olsen (Tommy John), Luis Rijo (Tommy John), and lefty Zarion Sharpe (forearm strain). Placed on the 7-Day IL are right-handed pitchers Owen Griffith (forearm strain), Francis Peguero (low back strain), Ryan Shreve (shoulder impingement), and catcher Pat Winkel (low back strain). SAINTS SENTINEL St. Paul 7, Louisville1 Box Score Derek Rodriguez officially made his return to the organization when he made his first start of the season for the St. Paul Saints. The former outfielder-turned-pitcher who spent parts of three seasons pitching for the Giants after leaving the Twins via free agency went the first four innings. He gave up just one hit, walked two and struck out five batters without allowing a run. He threw 58 pitches (32 strikes). Drew Strotman came on in his new bullpen role. He provided three innings and gave up just one run on one hit. He walked three and struck out two batters. Wladimir Pinto struck out two batters over the final two innings. Jake Cave continues to lead the Saints’ offense. He led off tonight with Jose Miranda getting the game off. Cave went 2-for-3 with two walks and a triple in this game. He is currently hitting .500 with an OPS of 1.397. Royce Lewis had a single in five at bats. Trevor Larnach recorded his first hit of the season, and he also drove in the Saints first run with a sacrifice fly. Mark Contreras provided the big hit in a three-run third inning. With the bases loaded and two outs, he hit a solid single up the middle to drive in two runs. The Saints are now 3-1. WIND SURGE WISDOM Wichita 4, Tulsa 5 Box Score Lots of Minnesota connections in this one, but let’s talk about the game first. Matt Canterino made the start for the Wind Surge. He really struggled at the start. His game started rough. He gave up a single, then walked a batter. He gave up a run on a double. Then he walked another batter to load the bases. He got a pop up and a couple of strikeouts to get out of the inning, but he needed to throw 30 pitches. He did get a second inning, and recorded a third strikeout, but that was the end to his night. Louie Varland came in to start the third inning. He got the same strike zone that Canterino and the Drillers starting pitcher got. He went 4 2/3 innings. He gave up four runs on five hits and five walks. He walked four batters. Evan Sisk got the next four outs without any more damage despite two walks. Steven Cruz pitched a scoreless ninth frame. That Drillers starter was none other than Louie’s brother Gus Varland. It had to be fun for the 19 or more family members that made the trek to Wichita. He went 4 1/3 scoreless innings and gave up just one hit. He walked four batters and struck out five. In addition, Inver Grove Heights native Michael Busch, a Dodgers top prospect, went 0-for-3 and walked twice. The Wind Surge didn’t get much offense and were unable to do much, until very late in the game. Down 5-0, the Wind Surge scored a run in the seventh inning. And in the eighth inning, outfielder Cole Sturgeon hit a three-run homer to cut the deficit to just one run. Michael Helman led the offense. He went 0-for-1 but walked three times. Forest Lake’s Matt Wallner walked twice in the game, as did Andrew Bechtold. However, in the ninth inning, the Tulsa closer struck out the side to end any walkoff hopes for the Wind Surge. Here is the Twins Spotlight episode with Louie and Gus Varland from before spring training if you missed it. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 12, Beloit 5 Box Score Pro ball is Christian Encarnacion-Strand’s world. That is all. Since the Twins selected him with their fourth-round pick last summer out of Oklahoma State, he has hit. In 22 games last year in Ft. Myers, he hit .391/.424/.598 (1.022) with two doubles, two triples, and four home runs. Now fast-forward to 2022, he is promoted to High-A Cedar Rapids, and despite freezing, cold temperatures, he went 4-for-5 with a grand slam in the seven-run fourth inning and a three-run homer in the sixth inning. He ended the game with nine RBI. Hey, guess who is going to be the minor-league hitter of the day? And how about the Kernels LED lights that they installed last season! Anthony Prato led off for the Kernels. He went 2-for-4 with a walk and three runs scored. He also stole a base. Batting ninth was Kennie Taylor went 2-for-4 with an RBI. Lefty Aaron Rozek started and went the first five innings to earn the Win in this game. He gave up three runs (2 earned) on five hits. He walked none and struck out six batters. Bradley Hanner came on and walked two over two scoreless, hitless innings. He struck out two batters. Tyler Palm worked the final two innings. He gave up two runs on four hits while striking out four batters. MUSSEL MATTERS Fort Myers 6, Clearwater 5 Box Score The Mighty Mussels got their season going with a nice win. They jumped out to a 6-2 lead through five innings and then held on for a one-run win. John Stankiewicz was the starter of the Mussels. The Fordham alum gave up two runs on two hits and two walks over five innings. He struck out eight batters and earned his first win of the season. Hunter McMahon came on and gave up three runs on three hits and a walk in two innings. He struck out two batters. Matthew Swain came on and tossed two perfect innings to record the save. The hard-throwing right-hander struck out three batters. Ft. Myers got on the board in the top of the third inning. With the bases loaded, Keoni Cavaco drilled a bases-clearing double. He went 3-for-5 in the game. In the fifth inning, Kala’i Rosario tripled in a run and then scored on a Kyler Fedko sacrifice to give the Mussels their sixth run. Noah Miller went 3-for-5 in the game as the team’s leadoff hitter. He also stole a base. Kyle Schmidt went 2-4 with the other RBI. TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS OF THE DAY Every day, we will select one hitter of the day and one pitcher of the day, and you can discuss who it should have been. Hopefully many days we will have many good options! Pitcher of the Day – John Stankiewicz (Ft. Myers) - 5 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 2 BB, 8 K Hitter of the Day – Christian Encarnacion-Strand (Cedar Rapids) - 4-5, 2 R, 9 RBI 2 HR PROSPECT SUMMARY We will again keep tabs on the Twins top prospects. You’ll probably read about them in the team sections, but if they aren’t there, you’ll see how they did here. Here’s a look at how the Twins Daily Midseason Top 20 Twins Prospects performed: #1 - Austin Martin (Wichita) - 0-5, 2 K, 2 Es #2 - Royce Lewis (St. Paul) - 1-5, R, K, SB (3) #5 - Joe Ryan (Minnesota) - 4 IP, 2 H, 2 ER, 4 BB, 4 K, 1 HBP (70 pitches, 42 strikes) #6 - Matt Canterino (Wichita) - 2 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 2 BB, 3 K (45 pitches, 26 strikes) #7 - Jhoan Duran (Minnesota) - 2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 K (31 pitches, 22 strikes) #10 - Noah Miller (Ft. Myers) - 3-5, R, SB (1) #12 - Matt Wallner (Wichita) - 0-2, 2 BB, 2 K #14 - Louie Varland (Wichita) - 4.2 IP, 5 H, 4 R, 5 BB, 4 K, (86 pitches, 49 strikes) #15 - Emmanuel Rodriguez (Ft. Myers) - 0-3, 2 BB, R, K #18 - Spencer Steer (Wichita) - 1-3, BB, K #19 - Edouard Julien (Wichita) - 1-4 SATURDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS St. Paul @ Louisville (12:05PM CST) - LHP Devin Smeltzer Tulsa @ Wichita (6:05PM CST) - RHP Simeon Woods Richardson Beloit @ Cedar Rapids (2:05 PM CST) - LHP Brent Headrick Fort Myers @ Clearwater (5:05 PM CST) - RHP David Festa Please feel free to ask questions and discuss Friday’s games! It sure is exciting to have all four Twins full-season affiliates back and playing. View full article
  10. The daily Minor League Reports have been back for three days already, but tonight feels a little more special. It is Opening Night for the Wichita Wind Surge, the Cedar Rapids Kernels, and the Ft. Myers Mighty Mussels. There was a big-time Minnesota connection in Wichita. The Kernels had a hitter make a very strong first impression. A couple of first-rounders had big nights in Ft. Myers and they held on for a close win. Oh, and the Saints got another win as a former prospect returned to the organization and pitched well. Let’s get to the report. As always, please feel free to discuss and ask questions. TRANSACTIONS On Friday, Cedar Rapids announced that seven players have been added to their roster, but on the Injured List. Added to the 60-Day IL are right-handed pitchers Jon Olsen (Tommy John), Luis Rijo (Tommy John), and lefty Zarion Sharpe (forearm strain). Placed on the 7-Day IL are right-handed pitchers Owen Griffith (forearm strain), Francis Peguero (low back strain), Ryan Shreve (shoulder impingement), and catcher Pat Winkel (low back strain). SAINTS SENTINEL St. Paul 7, Louisville1 Box Score Derek Rodriguez officially made his return to the organization when he made his first start of the season for the St. Paul Saints. The former outfielder-turned-pitcher who spent parts of three seasons pitching for the Giants after leaving the Twins via free agency went the first four innings. He gave up just one hit, walked two and struck out five batters without allowing a run. He threw 58 pitches (32 strikes). Drew Strotman came on in his new bullpen role. He provided three innings and gave up just one run on one hit. He walked three and struck out two batters. Wladimir Pinto struck out two batters over the final two innings. Jake Cave continues to lead the Saints’ offense. He led off tonight with Jose Miranda getting the game off. Cave went 2-for-3 with two walks and a triple in this game. He is currently hitting .500 with an OPS of 1.397. Royce Lewis had a single in five at bats. Trevor Larnach recorded his first hit of the season, and he also drove in the Saints first run with a sacrifice fly. Mark Contreras provided the big hit in a three-run third inning. With the bases loaded and two outs, he hit a solid single up the middle to drive in two runs. The Saints are now 3-1. WIND SURGE WISDOM Wichita 4, Tulsa 5 Box Score Lots of Minnesota connections in this one, but let’s talk about the game first. Matt Canterino made the start for the Wind Surge. He really struggled at the start. His game started rough. He gave up a single, then walked a batter. He gave up a run on a double. Then he walked another batter to load the bases. He got a pop up and a couple of strikeouts to get out of the inning, but he needed to throw 30 pitches. He did get a second inning, and recorded a third strikeout, but that was the end to his night. Louie Varland came in to start the third inning. He got the same strike zone that Canterino and the Drillers starting pitcher got. He went 4 2/3 innings. He gave up four runs on five hits and five walks. He walked four batters. Evan Sisk got the next four outs without any more damage despite two walks. Steven Cruz pitched a scoreless ninth frame. That Drillers starter was none other than Louie’s brother Gus Varland. It had to be fun for the 19 or more family members that made the trek to Wichita. He went 4 1/3 scoreless innings and gave up just one hit. He walked four batters and struck out five. In addition, Inver Grove Heights native Michael Busch, a Dodgers top prospect, went 0-for-3 and walked twice. The Wind Surge didn’t get much offense and were unable to do much, until very late in the game. Down 5-0, the Wind Surge scored a run in the seventh inning. And in the eighth inning, outfielder Cole Sturgeon hit a three-run homer to cut the deficit to just one run. Michael Helman led the offense. He went 0-for-1 but walked three times. Forest Lake’s Matt Wallner walked twice in the game, as did Andrew Bechtold. However, in the ninth inning, the Tulsa closer struck out the side to end any walkoff hopes for the Wind Surge. Here is the Twins Spotlight episode with Louie and Gus Varland from before spring training if you missed it. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 12, Beloit 5 Box Score Pro ball is Christian Encarnacion-Strand’s world. That is all. Since the Twins selected him with their fourth-round pick last summer out of Oklahoma State, he has hit. In 22 games last year in Ft. Myers, he hit .391/.424/.598 (1.022) with two doubles, two triples, and four home runs. Now fast-forward to 2022, he is promoted to High-A Cedar Rapids, and despite freezing, cold temperatures, he went 4-for-5 with a grand slam in the seven-run fourth inning and a three-run homer in the sixth inning. He ended the game with nine RBI. Hey, guess who is going to be the minor-league hitter of the day? And how about the Kernels LED lights that they installed last season! Anthony Prato led off for the Kernels. He went 2-for-4 with a walk and three runs scored. He also stole a base. Batting ninth was Kennie Taylor went 2-for-4 with an RBI. Lefty Aaron Rozek started and went the first five innings to earn the Win in this game. He gave up three runs (2 earned) on five hits. He walked none and struck out six batters. Bradley Hanner came on and walked two over two scoreless, hitless innings. He struck out two batters. Tyler Palm worked the final two innings. He gave up two runs on four hits while striking out four batters. MUSSEL MATTERS Fort Myers 6, Clearwater 5 Box Score The Mighty Mussels got their season going with a nice win. They jumped out to a 6-2 lead through five innings and then held on for a one-run win. John Stankiewicz was the starter of the Mussels. The Fordham alum gave up two runs on two hits and two walks over five innings. He struck out eight batters and earned his first win of the season. Hunter McMahon came on and gave up three runs on three hits and a walk in two innings. He struck out two batters. Matthew Swain came on and tossed two perfect innings to record the save. The hard-throwing right-hander struck out three batters. Ft. Myers got on the board in the top of the third inning. With the bases loaded, Keoni Cavaco drilled a bases-clearing double. He went 3-for-5 in the game. In the fifth inning, Kala’i Rosario tripled in a run and then scored on a Kyler Fedko sacrifice to give the Mussels their sixth run. Noah Miller went 3-for-5 in the game as the team’s leadoff hitter. He also stole a base. Kyle Schmidt went 2-4 with the other RBI. TWINS DAILY MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS OF THE DAY Every day, we will select one hitter of the day and one pitcher of the day, and you can discuss who it should have been. Hopefully many days we will have many good options! Pitcher of the Day – John Stankiewicz (Ft. Myers) - 5 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 2 BB, 8 K Hitter of the Day – Christian Encarnacion-Strand (Cedar Rapids) - 4-5, 2 R, 9 RBI 2 HR PROSPECT SUMMARY We will again keep tabs on the Twins top prospects. You’ll probably read about them in the team sections, but if they aren’t there, you’ll see how they did here. Here’s a look at how the Twins Daily Midseason Top 20 Twins Prospects performed: #1 - Austin Martin (Wichita) - 0-5, 2 K, 2 Es #2 - Royce Lewis (St. Paul) - 1-5, R, K, SB (3) #5 - Joe Ryan (Minnesota) - 4 IP, 2 H, 2 ER, 4 BB, 4 K, 1 HBP (70 pitches, 42 strikes) #6 - Matt Canterino (Wichita) - 2 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 2 BB, 3 K (45 pitches, 26 strikes) #7 - Jhoan Duran (Minnesota) - 2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 K (31 pitches, 22 strikes) #10 - Noah Miller (Ft. Myers) - 3-5, R, SB (1) #12 - Matt Wallner (Wichita) - 0-2, 2 BB, 2 K #14 - Louie Varland (Wichita) - 4.2 IP, 5 H, 4 R, 5 BB, 4 K, (86 pitches, 49 strikes) #15 - Emmanuel Rodriguez (Ft. Myers) - 0-3, 2 BB, R, K #18 - Spencer Steer (Wichita) - 1-3, BB, K #19 - Edouard Julien (Wichita) - 1-4 SATURDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS St. Paul @ Louisville (12:05PM CST) - LHP Devin Smeltzer Tulsa @ Wichita (6:05PM CST) - RHP Simeon Woods Richardson Beloit @ Cedar Rapids (2:05 PM CST) - LHP Brent Headrick Fort Myers @ Clearwater (5:05 PM CST) - RHP David Festa Please feel free to ask questions and discuss Friday’s games! It sure is exciting to have all four Twins full-season affiliates back and playing.
  11. In his three season as Twins manager, Rocco Baldelli is yet to name a closer, and that likely won't change anytime soon. But, we know which relievers get the highest-leverage situations and most of the ninth innings. It's hard to predict which pitchers will fill that role, especially in the future. However, today we consider which Twins minor leaguers mighty be strong candidates. Although most pitching prospects begin their minor league careers as starters, many of them eventually wind up in the bullpen at the MLB level. The Minnesota Twins are very familiar with how this transition can lead to a fruitful career with the likes of Joe Nathan, Glen Perkins, and, more recently, Tyler Duffey doing so under their watch. The Twins currently have a multitude of pitching prospects who are knocking on the door to the majors, but it is unlikely that all of them will stick as starters. Below are five names who could not only make the switch to the pen, but may ultimately perform well in the closer role. RHP JHOAN DURAN 2021 stats (Triple-A): 5 G, 4 GS, 16 IP, 5.06 ERA, 3.86 FIP, 22 K, 13 BB, 16.7% HR/FB Duran has, without a doubt, the most electric raw stuff in the Twins' farm system. He regularly hits 100 mph with his 4-seam fastball, which pairs well with his splitter-sinker hybrid (low-90s) and curveball (mid-80s). However, his poor command and right upper-extremity injury history may limit the overall height of his ceiling; he’s only ever thrown more than 70 innings in a season once. There are many similarities between Duran and former Twin Brusdar Graterol, so it would not be surprising to see their careers take indistinguishable paths. Graterol was solid out of the pen for the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2021, though he functioned more as a set-up man than a closer. A shift to the bullpen may be in Duran — and the Twins' — best interests in the short and long-term. RHP LOUIE VARLAND 2021 stats (Low-/High-A): 20 G, 18 GS, 103 IP, 2.10 ERA, 2.34/3.20 FIP, 142 K, 30 BB, 6.9%/5.8% HR/FB The Twins' 2021 Minor League Pitcher of the Year burst forth out of obscurity this past summer on the back of a fastball that jumped in average velocity from the low-90s while at Division II Concordia University, St. Paul to the mid- to upper-90s with above average spin. He also owns a biting curveball that plays well down in the zone, feeding off the dominance of his fastball up. However, he lacks a third pitch and, despite low walk numbers, occasionally struggles with command, particularly that of his breaking ball. Varland will likely stick in a starting role as he advances through the minor leagues, but unless he develops a third offering or cleans up his curveball, his future may be as a back of the bullpen ace. The Twins have had previous success with closers from St. Paul, after all. RHP OSIRIS GERMAN 2021 stats (Low-/High-A): 38 G, 0 GS, 4 SV, 59 1/3 IP, 3.34 ERA, 3.14/2.69 FIP, 90 K, 24 BB, 12.5%/4.5% HR/FB At just 23 years old, German is still at least a couple of years away from sniffing the majors, but it’s easy to see why he is highly thought of after watching just a couple of pitches. German has that undefinable, yet important electricity that many of the game’s best bullpen arms possess. While his fastball pops out of the hand and plays well up in the zone, it’s his breaking ball that is the star of his show. What may prevent German from reaching his potential, however, is his erraticism and high-effort delivery. German doesn’t possess good command of either his fastball or curve, often overthrowing both. From a mechanics perspective, doesn’t get enough push off from his lower extremity which causes him to rely on the whipping action of his core and shoulder to produce torque and velocity German is the perfect candidate for a tweak in his delivery as well as the development of a third pitch (perhaps a cutter?). If he can hone his command, his stuff is good enough to reach the majors. RHP COLE SANDS 2021 stats (Double-A): 19 G, 18 GS, 80 1/3 IP, 2.46 ERA, 3.55 FIP, 96 K, 35 BB, 7.2% HR/FB Sands was among the Twins’ most steady minor league starting pitchers in 2021. He consistently pitched until at least the fifth inning and racked up strikeouts with the best in the system, ranking ninth overall. The former Florida State Seminole has a three pitch mix consisting of a fastball, curve, and changeup, though only his breaking ball is currently an above average offering. (His fastball is close, and may already be there, depending on whose opinion you seek.) In many respects, Sands is a carbon copy of current Twins’ reliever Tyler Duffey, who has been among the team's more consistent bullpen arms over the past couple of seasons. Sands currently may lack an electric fastball — which is often a requirement among back of the bullpen arms — but his curveball and punch out pedigree is intriguing. HIBERNATION CANDIDATE: LHP AARON ROZEK 2021 stats (Rookie Ball through Double-A): 16 G, 7 GS, 56 1/3 IP, 2.40 ERA, 0.81/2.48/4.40/2.15 FIP, 74 K, 7 BB, 0.0%/14.3%/18.2%/0.0% HR/FB Rozek came out of nowhere during the 2021 season. The Burnsville native and Minnesota State University, Mankato alum signed with the Twins on a minor league deal in late June before proceeding to pitch to great success across four levels of play. (He had never played in the minors prior to his signing, though he did play Indy Ball during 2019.) Rozek possesses two breaking pitches — a slider and a loopier slurve — which he uses primarily as his out pitches as well as a a fastball, though it is rather mediocre. At age 26 with less than one season of MiLB experience under his belt, the likelihood Rozek ever makes it to the parent squad is slim. Add in the fact that he is left-handed and doesn’t possess an elite fastball, and the odds of him ever being a closer are nearly nil. But for an undrafted free agent from an NCAA Division II school, he displayed plenty of talent that should pique the interest of Twins’ fans. MORE FROM TWINS DAILY — Latest Twins coverage from our writers — Recent Twins discussion in our forums — Follow Twins Daily via Twitter, Facebook or email — Read more of Lucas's minor league prospect coverage here View full article
  12. Although most pitching prospects begin their minor league careers as starters, many of them eventually wind up in the bullpen at the MLB level. The Minnesota Twins are very familiar with how this transition can lead to a fruitful career with the likes of Joe Nathan, Glen Perkins, and, more recently, Tyler Duffey doing so under their watch. The Twins currently have a multitude of pitching prospects who are knocking on the door to the majors, but it is unlikely that all of them will stick as starters. Below are five names who could not only make the switch to the pen, but may ultimately perform well in the closer role. RHP JHOAN DURAN 2021 stats (Triple-A): 5 G, 4 GS, 16 IP, 5.06 ERA, 3.86 FIP, 22 K, 13 BB, 16.7% HR/FB Duran has, without a doubt, the most electric raw stuff in the Twins' farm system. He regularly hits 100 mph with his 4-seam fastball, which pairs well with his splitter-sinker hybrid (low-90s) and curveball (mid-80s). However, his poor command and right upper-extremity injury history may limit the overall height of his ceiling; he’s only ever thrown more than 70 innings in a season once. There are many similarities between Duran and former Twin Brusdar Graterol, so it would not be surprising to see their careers take indistinguishable paths. Graterol was solid out of the pen for the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2021, though he functioned more as a set-up man than a closer. A shift to the bullpen may be in Duran — and the Twins' — best interests in the short and long-term. RHP LOUIE VARLAND 2021 stats (Low-/High-A): 20 G, 18 GS, 103 IP, 2.10 ERA, 2.34/3.20 FIP, 142 K, 30 BB, 6.9%/5.8% HR/FB The Twins' 2021 Minor League Pitcher of the Year burst forth out of obscurity this past summer on the back of a fastball that jumped in average velocity from the low-90s while at Division II Concordia University, St. Paul to the mid- to upper-90s with above average spin. He also owns a biting curveball that plays well down in the zone, feeding off the dominance of his fastball up. However, he lacks a third pitch and, despite low walk numbers, occasionally struggles with command, particularly that of his breaking ball. Varland will likely stick in a starting role as he advances through the minor leagues, but unless he develops a third offering or cleans up his curveball, his future may be as a back of the bullpen ace. The Twins have had previous success with closers from St. Paul, after all. RHP OSIRIS GERMAN 2021 stats (Low-/High-A): 38 G, 0 GS, 4 SV, 59 1/3 IP, 3.34 ERA, 3.14/2.69 FIP, 90 K, 24 BB, 12.5%/4.5% HR/FB At just 23 years old, German is still at least a couple of years away from sniffing the majors, but it’s easy to see why he is highly thought of after watching just a couple of pitches. German has that undefinable, yet important electricity that many of the game’s best bullpen arms possess. While his fastball pops out of the hand and plays well up in the zone, it’s his breaking ball that is the star of his show. What may prevent German from reaching his potential, however, is his erraticism and high-effort delivery. German doesn’t possess good command of either his fastball or curve, often overthrowing both. From a mechanics perspective, doesn’t get enough push off from his lower extremity which causes him to rely on the whipping action of his core and shoulder to produce torque and velocity German is the perfect candidate for a tweak in his delivery as well as the development of a third pitch (perhaps a cutter?). If he can hone his command, his stuff is good enough to reach the majors. RHP COLE SANDS 2021 stats (Double-A): 19 G, 18 GS, 80 1/3 IP, 2.46 ERA, 3.55 FIP, 96 K, 35 BB, 7.2% HR/FB Sands was among the Twins’ most steady minor league starting pitchers in 2021. He consistently pitched until at least the fifth inning and racked up strikeouts with the best in the system, ranking ninth overall. The former Florida State Seminole has a three pitch mix consisting of a fastball, curve, and changeup, though only his breaking ball is currently an above average offering. (His fastball is close, and may already be there, depending on whose opinion you seek.) In many respects, Sands is a carbon copy of current Twins’ reliever Tyler Duffey, who has been among the team's more consistent bullpen arms over the past couple of seasons. Sands currently may lack an electric fastball — which is often a requirement among back of the bullpen arms — but his curveball and punch out pedigree is intriguing. HIBERNATION CANDIDATE: LHP AARON ROZEK 2021 stats (Rookie Ball through Double-A): 16 G, 7 GS, 56 1/3 IP, 2.40 ERA, 0.81/2.48/4.40/2.15 FIP, 74 K, 7 BB, 0.0%/14.3%/18.2%/0.0% HR/FB Rozek came out of nowhere during the 2021 season. The Burnsville native and Minnesota State University, Mankato alum signed with the Twins on a minor league deal in late June before proceeding to pitch to great success across four levels of play. (He had never played in the minors prior to his signing, though he did play Indy Ball during 2019.) Rozek possesses two breaking pitches — a slider and a loopier slurve — which he uses primarily as his out pitches as well as a a fastball, though it is rather mediocre. At age 26 with less than one season of MiLB experience under his belt, the likelihood Rozek ever makes it to the parent squad is slim. Add in the fact that he is left-handed and doesn’t possess an elite fastball, and the odds of him ever being a closer are nearly nil. But for an undrafted free agent from an NCAA Division II school, he displayed plenty of talent that should pique the interest of Twins’ fans. MORE FROM TWINS DAILY — Latest Twins coverage from our writers — Recent Twins discussion in our forums — Follow Twins Daily via Twitter, Facebook or email — Read more of Lucas's minor league prospect coverage here
  13. The Kernels clinched their eighth playoff berth in as many years with a blowout win. The Wind Surge also put up double-digit runs and the Mussels won a tight game. SAINTS SENTINEL Indianapolis 10, Saints 3 Box Score Drew Strotman: 4 IP, 8 H, 7 R/ER, 3 BB, 2 K HR: Drew Stankiewicz (2) Multi-hit games: Jimmy Kerrigan (2-for-3, 2 2B, RBI, BB), Stankiewicz (2-for-3, HR, RBI, R) Drew Strotman started allowed seven runs in four innings in the Saints’ loss Sunday. Strotman has allowed 23 runs over his last 23 innings. Yennier Cano gave up two runs in relief on two hits and two walks. Ryan Mason allowed an unearned run and Vinny Nittoli and Chris Nunn each pitched scoreless innings. Drew Stankiewicz blasted a homer in the third and added another hit from the nine-hole. Jimmy Kerrigan drove in Mitch Garver in the fourth with a double and BJ Boyd picked up an RBI with a groundout. Indianapolis recorded 13 singles and zero extra-base hits, scoring 10 runs and walking five times. The Saints fell to 61-59. WIND SURGE WISDOM Wind Surge 10, Travelers 6 Box Score Ben Gross: 4 IP, 7 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 2 BB, 4 K HR: Spencer Steer (14), Andrew Bechtold (18) Multi-hit games: Austin Martin (2-for-2, 2 2B, 3 BB, 3 R), D.J. Burt (2-for-5, 2 2B, 2 R, 3 RBI), Steer (2-for-4, 2B, HR, R, 4 RBI), Aaron Whitefield (2-for-4, 2B) Spencer Steer hit a three-run homer in the first, setting the tone for a great offensive day for the Surge. Ben Gross started and allowed five runs (four earned) in four innings of work. Austin Martin reached base five times, including two doubles and three walks. Andrew Bechtold continued his power-breakout with his 18th homer of the season. Simeon Woods Richardson pitched two scoreless innings and struck out one. Alex Phillips and Erik Manoah Jr. each threw scoreless innings. Jordan Gore allowed one run on two hits in the ninth. The Surge will compete in the playoffs next week. KERNELS NUGGETS Kernels 11, Chiefs 0 Box Score Aaron Rozek: 5 IP, 0 R/ER, BB, 4 K HR: Edouard Julien (15), Matt Wallner (15), DaShawn Keirsey 2 (7) Multi-hit games: Julien (2-for-5, HR, 2B, 2 R, 2 RBI, BB), Aaron Sabato (2-for-4, 2 R, BB), Wallner (2-for-3, HR, 2B, 2 R, 2 RBI), Alex Isola (2-for-5, RBI, R), Daniel Ozoria (2-for-2, 2B, 2 RBI, R), Keirsey (2-for-5, 2 HR, 3 RBI, 2 R) The Kernels clinched a playoff berth with a huge 11-0 win Sunday. Aaron Rozek started and dazzled with five scoreless innings. Rozek struck out four. Denny Bentley, Carlos Suniaga, Zach Featherstone, and Andrew Cabezas combined for four scoreless innings out of the Kernels’ bullpen. Edouard Julien and Matt Wallner both hit two-run homers in the third and the Kernels never looked back. DaShawn Keirsey then added a solo homer in the fourth before Michael Helman drove in a run on an RBI double. The Kernels didn’t stop. Alex Isola added an RBI double, Daniel Ozoria drove in two as a pinch-hitter, and DaShawn Keirsey hit two homers, his sixth and seventh of the season. MUSSEL MATTERS Mussels 5, Tarpons 4 Box Score Brent Headrick: 3 IP, 2 H, 0 R/ER, 0 BB, 7 K HR: None Multi-hit games: Christian Encarnacion-Strand (2-for-4, 3B, RBI), Kyler Fedko (2-for-4, R), Mikey Perez (2-for-4, 2 2B, RBI, R), Willie Joe Gary Jr. (2-for-4, 3B, RBI, R) Willie Joe Garry got things going with an RBI triple in the second and things were looking good for the Mussels early. Brent Headrick started and dominated in three innings, striking out seven. Unfortunately David Festa couldn’t hold the lead, allowing three runs (two earned) on two hits and a walk. Zarion Sharpe pitched very well in relief, striking out three in 3 1/3 one-run innings. The Mussels rallied in the eighth as Patrick Winkel and Mikey Perez added clutch hits to drive in runs. Ramon Pineda, younger brother of Twins pitcher Michael Pineda, earned the win. Fort Myers finished its season with a 60-54 record. COMPLEX CHRONICLES Season is Complete. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Aaron Rozek (5 IP, 0 R/ER, BB, 4 K) Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – DaShawn Keirsey (2-for-5, 2 HR, 3 RBI, 2 R) PROSPECT SUMMARY Here’s a look at how the Twins Daily Top 20 Twins Prospects performed: #1 – Royce Lewis (Rehab) - Out for season (torn ACL) #2 – Austin Martin (Wichita) - 2-for-2, 2 R, 3 BB #3 – Jordan Balazovic (Wichita) - Did not pitch #4 – Simeon Woods Richardson (Wichita) - 2 IP, H, 0 R/ER, 2 BB, K #5 – Jhoan Duran (St. Paul) - Injured List (Right Elbow Strain) #6 – Jose Miranda (St. Paul) - 0-for-4, K #7 – Joe Ryan (Minnesota) - Did not pitch #8 – Matt Canterino (Cedar Rapids) - Injured List (Right Elbow Strain) #9 – Chase Petty (Complex) - Did not play #10 – Keoni Cavaco (Fort Myers) - Did not play #11 – Josh Winder (St. Paul) - Injured List (Right Shoulder Impingement) #12 – Matt Wallner (Cedar Rapids) - 2-for-3, HR, 2 R, 2 RBI #13 – Gilberto Celestino (St. Paul) - 1-for-4, R #14 – Drew Strotman (St. Paul) - 4 IP, 8 H, 7 R/ER, 3 BB, 2 K #15 – Noah Miller (FCL Twins) - Did not play #16 – Brent Rooker (Minnesota) - Did not play #17 – Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) - Out for Season (Tommy John surgery) #18 – Misael Urbina (Fort Myers) - 0-for-4, R, 3 K #19 – Cole Sands (Wichita) - Did not pitch #20 – Spencer Steer (Wichita) - 2-for-4, 2B, HR, R, 4 RBI View full article
  14. SAINTS SENTINEL Indianapolis 10, Saints 3 Box Score Drew Strotman: 4 IP, 8 H, 7 R/ER, 3 BB, 2 K HR: Drew Stankiewicz (2) Multi-hit games: Jimmy Kerrigan (2-for-3, 2 2B, RBI, BB), Stankiewicz (2-for-3, HR, RBI, R) Drew Strotman started allowed seven runs in four innings in the Saints’ loss Sunday. Strotman has allowed 23 runs over his last 23 innings. Yennier Cano gave up two runs in relief on two hits and two walks. Ryan Mason allowed an unearned run and Vinny Nittoli and Chris Nunn each pitched scoreless innings. Drew Stankiewicz blasted a homer in the third and added another hit from the nine-hole. Jimmy Kerrigan drove in Mitch Garver in the fourth with a double and BJ Boyd picked up an RBI with a groundout. Indianapolis recorded 13 singles and zero extra-base hits, scoring 10 runs and walking five times. The Saints fell to 61-59. WIND SURGE WISDOM Wind Surge 10, Travelers 6 Box Score Ben Gross: 4 IP, 7 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 2 BB, 4 K HR: Spencer Steer (14), Andrew Bechtold (18) Multi-hit games: Austin Martin (2-for-2, 2 2B, 3 BB, 3 R), D.J. Burt (2-for-5, 2 2B, 2 R, 3 RBI), Steer (2-for-4, 2B, HR, R, 4 RBI), Aaron Whitefield (2-for-4, 2B) Spencer Steer hit a three-run homer in the first, setting the tone for a great offensive day for the Surge. Ben Gross started and allowed five runs (four earned) in four innings of work. Austin Martin reached base five times, including two doubles and three walks. Andrew Bechtold continued his power-breakout with his 18th homer of the season. Simeon Woods Richardson pitched two scoreless innings and struck out one. Alex Phillips and Erik Manoah Jr. each threw scoreless innings. Jordan Gore allowed one run on two hits in the ninth. The Surge will compete in the playoffs next week. KERNELS NUGGETS Kernels 11, Chiefs 0 Box Score Aaron Rozek: 5 IP, 0 R/ER, BB, 4 K HR: Edouard Julien (15), Matt Wallner (15), DaShawn Keirsey 2 (7) Multi-hit games: Julien (2-for-5, HR, 2B, 2 R, 2 RBI, BB), Aaron Sabato (2-for-4, 2 R, BB), Wallner (2-for-3, HR, 2B, 2 R, 2 RBI), Alex Isola (2-for-5, RBI, R), Daniel Ozoria (2-for-2, 2B, 2 RBI, R), Keirsey (2-for-5, 2 HR, 3 RBI, 2 R) The Kernels clinched a playoff berth with a huge 11-0 win Sunday. Aaron Rozek started and dazzled with five scoreless innings. Rozek struck out four. Denny Bentley, Carlos Suniaga, Zach Featherstone, and Andrew Cabezas combined for four scoreless innings out of the Kernels’ bullpen. Edouard Julien and Matt Wallner both hit two-run homers in the third and the Kernels never looked back. DaShawn Keirsey then added a solo homer in the fourth before Michael Helman drove in a run on an RBI double. The Kernels didn’t stop. Alex Isola added an RBI double, Daniel Ozoria drove in two as a pinch-hitter, and DaShawn Keirsey hit two homers, his sixth and seventh of the season. MUSSEL MATTERS Mussels 5, Tarpons 4 Box Score Brent Headrick: 3 IP, 2 H, 0 R/ER, 0 BB, 7 K HR: None Multi-hit games: Christian Encarnacion-Strand (2-for-4, 3B, RBI), Kyler Fedko (2-for-4, R), Mikey Perez (2-for-4, 2 2B, RBI, R), Willie Joe Gary Jr. (2-for-4, 3B, RBI, R) Willie Joe Garry got things going with an RBI triple in the second and things were looking good for the Mussels early. Brent Headrick started and dominated in three innings, striking out seven. Unfortunately David Festa couldn’t hold the lead, allowing three runs (two earned) on two hits and a walk. Zarion Sharpe pitched very well in relief, striking out three in 3 1/3 one-run innings. The Mussels rallied in the eighth as Patrick Winkel and Mikey Perez added clutch hits to drive in runs. Ramon Pineda, younger brother of Twins pitcher Michael Pineda, earned the win. Fort Myers finished its season with a 60-54 record. COMPLEX CHRONICLES Season is Complete. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Aaron Rozek (5 IP, 0 R/ER, BB, 4 K) Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – DaShawn Keirsey (2-for-5, 2 HR, 3 RBI, 2 R) PROSPECT SUMMARY Here’s a look at how the Twins Daily Top 20 Twins Prospects performed: #1 – Royce Lewis (Rehab) - Out for season (torn ACL) #2 – Austin Martin (Wichita) - 2-for-2, 2 R, 3 BB #3 – Jordan Balazovic (Wichita) - Did not pitch #4 – Simeon Woods Richardson (Wichita) - 2 IP, H, 0 R/ER, 2 BB, K #5 – Jhoan Duran (St. Paul) - Injured List (Right Elbow Strain) #6 – Jose Miranda (St. Paul) - 0-for-4, K #7 – Joe Ryan (Minnesota) - Did not pitch #8 – Matt Canterino (Cedar Rapids) - Injured List (Right Elbow Strain) #9 – Chase Petty (Complex) - Did not play #10 – Keoni Cavaco (Fort Myers) - Did not play #11 – Josh Winder (St. Paul) - Injured List (Right Shoulder Impingement) #12 – Matt Wallner (Cedar Rapids) - 2-for-3, HR, 2 R, 2 RBI #13 – Gilberto Celestino (St. Paul) - 1-for-4, R #14 – Drew Strotman (St. Paul) - 4 IP, 8 H, 7 R/ER, 3 BB, 2 K #15 – Noah Miller (FCL Twins) - Did not play #16 – Brent Rooker (Minnesota) - Did not play #17 – Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) - Out for Season (Tommy John surgery) #18 – Misael Urbina (Fort Myers) - 0-for-4, R, 3 K #19 – Cole Sands (Wichita) - Did not pitch #20 – Spencer Steer (Wichita) - 2-for-4, 2B, HR, R, 4 RBI
  15. Before we share our choices for the Twins Minor League Top Four Starters for July, there were some other solid starting performers that just missed the cut. Let’s discuss the top starting pitchers in the organization in July. HONORABLE MENTION RHP Ben Gross - Cedar Rapids Kernels - 4 G, 3 GS, 21.0 IP, 2.14 ERA, 0.86 WHIP, 14 H, 4 BB, 25 K RHP Jordan Balazovic - Wichita Wind Surge - 5 GS, 28.1 IP, 2.86 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 21 H, 11 BB, 31 K. THE TOP FOUR STARTING PITCHERS #4 - RHP Giovahniey German - FCL Twins - 5 GS, 16.2 IP, 1.62 ERA, 0.96 WHIP, 9 H, 7 BB, 19 K German was born in Massachusetts but grew up in the Dominican Republic. The Twins signed him as a 16-year-old in 2017. He spent two seasons in the DSL. After missing the 2020 season, He came to the States this spring and was placed on the FCL Twins roster. His first start was June 28th and he gave up four earned runs in four innings. In his first start of July, he gave up three earned runs in 3 1/3 innings. Since then, he has tossed 13 1/3 innings and only allowed an unearned run. In his July 13th start, he tossed five no-hit innings and allowed two walks. #3 - LHP Aaron Rozek - FCL Twins/Ft. Myers Mighty Mussels/Wichita Wind Surge - 5 G, 2 GS, 22.0 IP, 1.64 ERA, 0.82 WHIP, 16 H, 2 BB, 29 K Rozek grew up a Twins fan in Burnsville. After high school, he went to Minnesota State-Mankato. He redshirted and then pitched four seasons for the Mavericks. He also played in the Northwoods League during his summers. He went undrafted in 2018 and has played independent baseball since. Until, that is, the Twins signed him in June. It’s been an interesting month. After two appearances in the FCL, including five shutout innings on July 3rd in which he struck out 11, he was moved to the Double-A Wichita Wind Surge. He pitched three scoreless innings in relief and recorded a Win. He was then sent to Ft. Myers where he has pitched three times. He tossed five scoreless innings in his first start there and ended the month with a two-inning scoreless outing. The lefty rarely, if ever, touches 90 on a radar gun, but he mixes things up well to keep hitters off balance. #2 - LHP Tyler Watson - Cedar Rapids Kernels - 4 G, 3 GS, 19.0 IP, 0.47 ERA, 0.95 WHIP, 11 H, 7 BB, 17 K Watson spent most of the season’s first month in a piggybacking role, either starting and working three innings or coming on after the starting and working three innings. In June, he worked mostly as a more traditional relief pitcher, working two innings or less. His final appearance of June was a four-inning start, and his four outings in July were all either four or five innings. His non-start, he came into the game in the second inning and pitched until the seventh inning. On the month, he gave up just two earned runs. He limited base runners. He was very good. Overall this season, the former Nationals prospect is 2-1 with a 1.68 ERA and a 1.16 WHIP. And the Twins Minor League Starting Pitcher of the Month is (Drumroll, please...) Ft. Myers Mighty Mussels/Cedar Rapids Kernels - RHP Louie Varland - 5 GS, 27.0 IP, 1.00 ERA, 1.04 WHIP, 20 H, 8 BB, 36 K Louie Varland was a star on the diamond and on the wrestling mat in his years at North St. Paul High School. He stayed home and pitched for three years at Concordia University in St. Paul, the first two years with his brother Gus. Gus was the 14th round pick of the Oakland A’s in 2018. He was traded to the Dodgers earlier this year. Louie was the 15th round pick of the Minnesota Twins in 2019. He pitched in just three games that summer for Elizabethton. He used the 2020 summer to get healthy, get stronger and gain velocity, and he did just that, hitting 100 mph on a radar gun before spring training. But for now, the intent for Varland is to be a starter, and he’s been fantastic. He began the season with Ft. Myers where he went 4-2 with a 2.09 ERA in 10 games. In 47 1/3 innings, he walked 16 and struck out 76 batters. He made two July starts in Ft. Myers, but mid-month, he was promoted to HIgh-A Cedar Rapids. He has made three starts for the Kernels so far and is yet to allow a run. In 16 innings, he has given up just eight hits, walked seven and struck out 17 batters. His best start was in Cedar Rapids against Beloit when he gave up one hit and struck out nine batters in five scoreless innings. Overall this season, the 23-year-old is 5-2 with a 1.56 ERA and a 1.14 WHIP. In 63 1/3 innings, he has walked 23 and struck out 93 batters. Congratulations to our Twins Daily Minor League Starting Pitcher of the Month of July, Cedar Rapids RHP Louie Varland.
  16. After taking a look at the top hitters in the Twins minor leagues in July yesterday, let’s take a look at who the top starting pitchers in the organization were. There were certainly some strong candidates for the top spot. Before we share our choices for the Twins Minor League Top Four Starters for July, there were some other solid starting performers that just missed the cut. Let’s discuss the top starting pitchers in the organization in July. HONORABLE MENTION RHP Ben Gross - Cedar Rapids Kernels - 4 G, 3 GS, 21.0 IP, 2.14 ERA, 0.86 WHIP, 14 H, 4 BB, 25 K RHP Jordan Balazovic - Wichita Wind Surge - 5 GS, 28.1 IP, 2.86 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 21 H, 11 BB, 31 K. THE TOP FOUR STARTING PITCHERS #4 - RHP Giovahniey German - FCL Twins - 5 GS, 16.2 IP, 1.62 ERA, 0.96 WHIP, 9 H, 7 BB, 19 K German was born in Massachusetts but grew up in the Dominican Republic. The Twins signed him as a 16-year-old in 2017. He spent two seasons in the DSL. After missing the 2020 season, He came to the States this spring and was placed on the FCL Twins roster. His first start was June 28th and he gave up four earned runs in four innings. In his first start of July, he gave up three earned runs in 3 1/3 innings. Since then, he has tossed 13 1/3 innings and only allowed an unearned run. In his July 13th start, he tossed five no-hit innings and allowed two walks. #3 - LHP Aaron Rozek - FCL Twins/Ft. Myers Mighty Mussels/Wichita Wind Surge - 5 G, 2 GS, 22.0 IP, 1.64 ERA, 0.82 WHIP, 16 H, 2 BB, 29 K Rozek grew up a Twins fan in Burnsville. After high school, he went to Minnesota State-Mankato. He redshirted and then pitched four seasons for the Mavericks. He also played in the Northwoods League during his summers. He went undrafted in 2018 and has played independent baseball since. Until, that is, the Twins signed him in June. It’s been an interesting month. After two appearances in the FCL, including five shutout innings on July 3rd in which he struck out 11, he was moved to the Double-A Wichita Wind Surge. He pitched three scoreless innings in relief and recorded a Win. He was then sent to Ft. Myers where he has pitched three times. He tossed five scoreless innings in his first start there and ended the month with a two-inning scoreless outing. The lefty rarely, if ever, touches 90 on a radar gun, but he mixes things up well to keep hitters off balance. #2 - LHP Tyler Watson - Cedar Rapids Kernels - 4 G, 3 GS, 19.0 IP, 0.47 ERA, 0.95 WHIP, 11 H, 7 BB, 17 K Watson spent most of the season’s first month in a piggybacking role, either starting and working three innings or coming on after the starting and working three innings. In June, he worked mostly as a more traditional relief pitcher, working two innings or less. His final appearance of June was a four-inning start, and his four outings in July were all either four or five innings. His non-start, he came into the game in the second inning and pitched until the seventh inning. On the month, he gave up just two earned runs. He limited base runners. He was very good. Overall this season, the former Nationals prospect is 2-1 with a 1.68 ERA and a 1.16 WHIP. And the Twins Minor League Starting Pitcher of the Month is (Drumroll, please...) Ft. Myers Mighty Mussels/Cedar Rapids Kernels - RHP Louie Varland - 5 GS, 27.0 IP, 1.00 ERA, 1.04 WHIP, 20 H, 8 BB, 36 K Louie Varland was a star on the diamond and on the wrestling mat in his years at North St. Paul High School. He stayed home and pitched for three years at Concordia University in St. Paul, the first two years with his brother Gus. Gus was the 14th round pick of the Oakland A’s in 2018. He was traded to the Dodgers earlier this year. Louie was the 15th round pick of the Minnesota Twins in 2019. He pitched in just three games that summer for Elizabethton. He used the 2020 summer to get healthy, get stronger and gain velocity, and he did just that, hitting 100 mph on a radar gun before spring training. But for now, the intent for Varland is to be a starter, and he’s been fantastic. He began the season with Ft. Myers where he went 4-2 with a 2.09 ERA in 10 games. In 47 1/3 innings, he walked 16 and struck out 76 batters. He made two July starts in Ft. Myers, but mid-month, he was promoted to HIgh-A Cedar Rapids. He has made three starts for the Kernels so far and is yet to allow a run. In 16 innings, he has given up just eight hits, walked seven and struck out 17 batters. His best start was in Cedar Rapids against Beloit when he gave up one hit and struck out nine batters in five scoreless innings. Overall this season, the 23-year-old is 5-2 with a 1.56 ERA and a 1.14 WHIP. In 63 1/3 innings, he has walked 23 and struck out 93 batters. Congratulations to our Twins Daily Minor League Starting Pitcher of the Month of July, Cedar Rapids RHP Louie Varland. View full article
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