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  1. TRANSACTIONS RHP D.J. Baxendale reinstated from the injured list INF Adam Rosales traded to the Cleveland Indians for cash considerations RED WINGS REPORT Red Wings 10, Pawtucket 8 Box Score Lewis Thorpe: 1 IP, 6 H, 5 ER, 1 BB, 0 K, 65% strikes (26 of 40 pitches) HR: Brent Rooker (5) Multi-hit games: Nick Gordon (2-for-5, 2 R, 2 RBI), LaMonte Wade (2-for-3, R, RBI, 2 BB), Luke Raley (3-for-6, 2 R,), Zander Wiel (2-for-5, R), Jordany Valdespin (3-for-5, R, 3 RBI), Drew Maggi (2-for-5, R, RBI) Lewis Thorpe ran into trouble in the first inning and was forced to throw 40 pitches. Because of the Twins 35 pitch in an inning limit, Thorpe was forced to leave the game after the first inning. Despite being down in a hole early, the Red Wings offense took action by scoring seven unanswered runs during the second through fourth innings. Going into the ninth knotted at eight a piece, Drew Maggi hit a leadoff double which was backed up by a Nick Gordon double immediately after which gave the Red Wings the lead. Two wild pitches from Jenrry Mejia allowed Gordon to move to third and then subsequently score to give the Red Wings a 10-8 lead. Despite only getting one inning from the starter, the Red Wings bullpen, made up of efforts from D.J. Baxendale, Austin Adams, Andrew Vasquez, and Preston Guilmet, was able to fire off eight innings of two-run ball that came with 11 punchouts and probably a solid pat on the back from the manager. BLUE WAHOO BITES Pensacola 11, Biloxi 2 Box Score Randy Dobnak: 4 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 5 SO, 63.6% strikes (49 of 77 pitches) HR: Travis Blankenhorn (2), Mitchell Kranson (3) Multi-hit games: Luis Arraez (2-for-4, 3 R, RBI, BB), Alex Kirilloff (2-for-4, 2 RBI, BB) The Blue Wahoos had already made their mark by having some ridiculously good starting pitching, but now they have a hot Luis Arraez and Travis Blankenhorn, a healthy Alex Kirilloff, and backup from another up-and-coming hotshot named Miguel Sano. Good luck trying to beat that. Randy Dobnak had a solid Double-A debut outing and he would have gotten the win had he reached the five-inning mark but that honor went to Adam Bray who fired off a pair of scoreless innings to continue his absolute tear so far this year. Tyler Jay finished off the game with three scoreless innings of his own. The Blue Wahoos bats were at it all game as they scored in every inning except for the fourth and eight where they finally decided to show a bit of mercy to the Shuckers. Miguel Sano went 0-for-2 with a walk and two strikeouts along with a sacrifice fly in the fifth and he also apparently hit an absolutely monster foul ball home run. Also of note, Alex Kirilloff made his start at first base, something he had not done in his professional career yet. The Twins had talked about getting him playing there in anticipation of whenever he joins the major league club as the Twins outfield is currently pretty set in stone. https://twitter.com/billvilonaPNJ/status/1124832775788486656 https://twitter.com/billvilonaPNJ/status/1124839813667016704 https://twitter.com/billvilonaPNJ/status/1124853320458428417 MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers 7, Palm Beach 5 Box Score (https://www.milb.com/gameday/miracle-vs-cardinals/2019/05/04/572995#game_state=final,lock_state=final,game_tab=box,game=572995) Charlie Barnes: 5 1/3 IP, 9 H, 5 ER, 4 BB, 6 K, 66% strikes (62 of 94 pitches) HR: Lewin Diaz (1), Aaron Whitefield (2) Multi-hit games: Royce Lewis (2-for-4, R, BB), Trevor Larnach (3-for-5, 2 R, RBI), Lewin Diaz (2-for-3, 2 R, 3 RBI, 2 BB) Another Saturday start for Charlie Barnes, I believe this is now the third time that I have written about a game that he started this year so far, this is frankly bordering on stalking and I am going to have to ask him to pick a different day to start (I’m kidding of course. I’ll write about Charlie with glee.) Anyways, the Miracle played quite the thriller of a game this Saturday. The scoring was kicked off early by the Cardinals as they put a run across in both the first, second, and fourth innings respectively. Luckily for the Miracle, Aaron Whitefield hates baseballs as much as he hates three-run deficits, so he launched his second homer of the year in the fifth inning to make it a 3-1 game. The Cardinals answered back with two more runs in the sixth, but it could have been worse had Trevor Larnach not gunned down the hopeful third run at the plate to keep the score 5-1. The Miracle scratched two runs together in the eighth thanks to some wild pitch and passed ball shenanigans to make the game a close 5-3 affair. The top of the ninth started with a Ryan Costello single but unfortunately, the next two batters would get out. Now with two outs in the ninth, Royce Lewis would work a walk to move Costello to second. Trevor Larnach then would single him home to make it just a one-run game. Now facing a chance to tie the game, Lewin Diaz decided to give the Miracle the lead outright as he blasted a heroic three-run homer to give the Miracle a 7-5 lead that they would not relinquish. https://twitter.com/MiracleBaseball/status/1124834090337951746 KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 2, Dayton 4 Box Score (https://www.milb.com/gameday/dragons-vs-kernels/2019/05/04/577193#game_state=final,game_tab=,game=577193) Tyler Palm: 4 2/3 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 8 K, 73.2% strikes (41 of 56 pitches) HR: Jacob Pearson (2) Multi-hit games: Andrew Bechtold (2-for-3, RBI, BB) Donning some awesome Yoda jerseys, the Kernels took on the Dragons in a game that ended in the same way that an actual fight between a dragon and a kernel of corn would end. https://twitter.com/MiLBPromos/status/1124781257077022721 Despite giving up four runs, Kernels pitchers combined for 15 strikeouts, a number that gave them the higher ground over the Dragon’s pitchers who could only muster eight. Kernels pitchers also only surrendered four hits total in the game, but the Dragons were opportunistic as they took advantage of an error in the fourth and a balk in the fifth to help with their scoring. Jacob Pearson had a big day offensively as he blasted his second homer of the year and walked twice along with scoring both of the runs for the Kernels. Hopefully this game will be the launching point of his season and he starts to improve his .503 OPS on the year. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Tyler Palm Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Trevor Larnach PROSPECT SUMMARY Here’s a look at how the Twins Daily Top 20 Twins Prospects performed: #1 - Royce Lewis (Ft. Myers) - 2-for-4, R, BB, K #2 - Alex Kirilloff (Pensacola) - 2-for-4, 2B, 2 RBI, BB, K #3 - Brusdar Graterol (Pensacola) - Did not pitch #4 - Trevor Larnach (Ft. Myers) - 3-for-5, 2 R, RBI, K #5 - Wander Javier (EST) - Season has not started #6 - Brent Rooker (Rochester) - 1-for-6, HR, R, 2 RBI, 2 K #7 - Jhoan Duran (Ft. Myers) - Did not pitch #8 - Lewis Thorpe (Rochester) - 1 IP, 6 H, 5 ER, 1 BB, 0 K #9 - Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) - Did not pitch #10 - Akil Baddoo (Ft. Myers) - 0-for-5, 3 K #11 - Nick Gordon (Rochester) - 2-for-5, 2 2B, 2 R, RBI #12 - Stephen Gonsalves (Rochester) - Injured list #13 - Ryan Jeffers (Ft. Myers) - 1-for-4, 2 K #14 - Ben Rortvedt (Ft. Myers) - 1-for-4 #15 - Yunior Severino (Cedar Rapids) - Injured list #16 - Gilberto Celestino (Cedar Rapids) - 0-for-4 #17 - Zack Littell (Rochester) - Did not pitch #18 - LaMonte Wade (Rochester) - 2-for-3, R, RBI, 2 BB #19 - Jorge Alcala (Pensacola) - Did not pitch #20 - Jose Miranda (Ft. Myers) - Did not play SUNDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Rochester @ Pawtucket (12:00 P.M.) - RHP Kohl Stewart Biloxi @ Pensacola (1:05 P.M.) - RHP Griffin Jax Fort Myers @ Palm Beach (12:00 P.M.) - RHP Jordan Balazovic Dayton @ Cedar Rapids (2:05 P.M.) - RHP Cole Sands Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss Saturday’s games.
  2. A common theme among the games played today was adversity, some teams were able to overcome it and win while others could not quite dig themselves out of the metaphorical hole. Come read about how that went down in this edition of the Minor League Report.TRANSACTIONS RHP D.J. Baxendale reinstated from the injured list INF Adam Rosales traded to the Cleveland Indians for cash considerations RED WINGS REPORT Red Wings 10, Pawtucket 8 Box Score Lewis Thorpe: 1 IP, 6 H, 5 ER, 1 BB, 0 K, 65% strikes (26 of 40 pitches) HR: Brent Rooker (5) Multi-hit games: Nick Gordon (2-for-5, 2 R, 2 RBI), LaMonte Wade (2-for-3, R, RBI, 2 BB), Luke Raley (3-for-6, 2 R,), Zander Wiel (2-for-5, R), Jordany Valdespin (3-for-5, R, 3 RBI), Drew Maggi (2-for-5, R, RBI) Lewis Thorpe ran into trouble in the first inning and was forced to throw 40 pitches. Because of the Twins 35 pitch in an inning limit, Thorpe was forced to leave the game after the first inning. Despite being down in a hole early, the Red Wings offense took action by scoring seven unanswered runs during the second through fourth innings. Going into the ninth knotted at eight a piece, Drew Maggi hit a leadoff double which was backed up by a Nick Gordon double immediately after which gave the Red Wings the lead. Two wild pitches from Jenrry Mejia allowed Gordon to move to third and then subsequently score to give the Red Wings a 10-8 lead. Despite only getting one inning from the starter, the Red Wings bullpen, made up of efforts from D.J. Baxendale, Austin Adams, Andrew Vasquez, and Preston Guilmet, was able to fire off eight innings of two-run ball that came with 11 punchouts and probably a solid pat on the back from the manager. BLUE WAHOO BITES Pensacola 11, Biloxi 2 Box Score Randy Dobnak: 4 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 5 SO, 63.6% strikes (49 of 77 pitches) HR: Travis Blankenhorn (2), Mitchell Kranson (3) Multi-hit games: Luis Arraez (2-for-4, 3 R, RBI, BB), Alex Kirilloff (2-for-4, 2 RBI, BB) The Blue Wahoos had already made their mark by having some ridiculously good starting pitching, but now they have a hot Luis Arraez and Travis Blankenhorn, a healthy Alex Kirilloff, and backup from another up-and-coming hotshot named Miguel Sano. Good luck trying to beat that. Randy Dobnak had a solid Double-A debut outing and he would have gotten the win had he reached the five-inning mark but that honor went to Adam Bray who fired off a pair of scoreless innings to continue his absolute tear so far this year. Tyler Jay finished off the game with three scoreless innings of his own. The Blue Wahoos bats were at it all game as they scored in every inning except for the fourth and eight where they finally decided to show a bit of mercy to the Shuckers. Miguel Sano went 0-for-2 with a walk and two strikeouts along with a sacrifice fly in the fifth and he also apparently hit an absolutely monster foul ball home run. Also of note, Alex Kirilloff made his start at first base, something he had not done in his professional career yet. The Twins had talked about getting him playing there in anticipation of whenever he joins the major league club as the Twins outfield is currently pretty set in stone. MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers 7, Palm Beach 5 Box Score (https://www.milb.com...box,game=572995) Charlie Barnes: 5 1/3 IP, 9 H, 5 ER, 4 BB, 6 K, 66% strikes (62 of 94 pitches) HR: Lewin Diaz (1), Aaron Whitefield (2) Multi-hit games: Royce Lewis (2-for-4, R, BB), Trevor Larnach (3-for-5, 2 R, RBI), Lewin Diaz (2-for-3, 2 R, 3 RBI, 2 BB) Another Saturday start for Charlie Barnes, I believe this is now the third time that I have written about a game that he started this year so far, this is frankly bordering on stalking and I am going to have to ask him to pick a different day to start (I’m kidding of course. I’ll write about Charlie with glee.) Anyways, the Miracle played quite the thriller of a game this Saturday. The scoring was kicked off early by the Cardinals as they put a run across in both the first, second, and fourth innings respectively. Luckily for the Miracle, Aaron Whitefield hates baseballs as much as he hates three-run deficits, so he launched his second homer of the year in the fifth inning to make it a 3-1 game. The Cardinals answered back with two more runs in the sixth, but it could have been worse had Trevor Larnach not gunned down the hopeful third run at the plate to keep the score 5-1. The Miracle scratched two runs together in the eighth thanks to some wild pitch and passed ball shenanigans to make the game a close 5-3 affair. The top of the ninth started with a Ryan Costello single but unfortunately, the next two batters would get out. Now with two outs in the ninth, Royce Lewis would work a walk to move Costello to second. Trevor Larnach then would single him home to make it just a one-run game. Now facing a chance to tie the game, Lewin Diaz decided to give the Miracle the lead outright as he blasted a heroic three-run homer to give the Miracle a 7-5 lead that they would not relinquish. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 2, Dayton 4 Box Score (https://www.milb.com...ab=,game=577193) Tyler Palm: 4 2/3 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 8 K, 73.2% strikes (41 of 56 pitches) HR: Jacob Pearson (2) Multi-hit games: Andrew Bechtold (2-for-3, RBI, BB) Donning some awesome Yoda jerseys, the Kernels took on the Dragons in a game that ended in the same way that an actual fight between a dragon and a kernel of corn would end. Despite giving up four runs, Kernels pitchers combined for 15 strikeouts, a number that gave them the higher ground over the Dragon’s pitchers who could only muster eight. Kernels pitchers also only surrendered four hits total in the game, but the Dragons were opportunistic as they took advantage of an error in the fourth and a balk in the fifth to help with their scoring. Jacob Pearson had a big day offensively as he blasted his second homer of the year and walked twice along with scoring both of the runs for the Kernels. Hopefully this game will be the launching point of his season and he starts to improve his .503 OPS on the year. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Tyler Palm Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Trevor Larnach PROSPECT SUMMARY Here’s a look at how the Twins Daily Top 20 Twins Prospects performed: #1 - Royce Lewis (Ft. Myers) - 2-for-4, R, BB, K #2 - Alex Kirilloff (Pensacola) - 2-for-4, 2B, 2 RBI, BB, K #3 - Brusdar Graterol (Pensacola) - Did not pitch #4 - Trevor Larnach (Ft. Myers) - 3-for-5, 2 R, RBI, K #5 - Wander Javier (EST) - Season has not started #6 - Brent Rooker (Rochester) - 1-for-6, HR, R, 2 RBI, 2 K #7 - Jhoan Duran (Ft. Myers) - Did not pitch #8 - Lewis Thorpe (Rochester) - 1 IP, 6 H, 5 ER, 1 BB, 0 K #9 - Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) - Did not pitch #10 - Akil Baddoo (Ft. Myers) - 0-for-5, 3 K #11 - Nick Gordon (Rochester) - 2-for-5, 2 2B, 2 R, RBI #12 - Stephen Gonsalves (Rochester) - Injured list #13 - Ryan Jeffers (Ft. Myers) - 1-for-4, 2 K #14 - Ben Rortvedt (Ft. Myers) - 1-for-4 #15 - Yunior Severino (Cedar Rapids) - Injured list #16 - Gilberto Celestino (Cedar Rapids) - 0-for-4 #17 - Zack Littell (Rochester) - Did not pitch #18 - LaMonte Wade (Rochester) - 2-for-3, R, RBI, 2 BB #19 - Jorge Alcala (Pensacola) - Did not pitch #20 - Jose Miranda (Ft. Myers) - Did not play SUNDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Rochester @ Pawtucket (12:00 P.M.) - RHP Kohl Stewart Biloxi @ Pensacola (1:05 P.M.) - RHP Griffin Jax Fort Myers @ Palm Beach (12:00 P.M.) - RHP Jordan Balazovic Dayton @ Cedar Rapids (2:05 P.M.) - RHP Cole Sands Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss Saturday’s games. Click here to view the article
  3. For the second straight day, there was not a single Win in the Twins minor league system on Monday night. Not that that has any bearing on the depth of the system. Just four or five games into the season, there are no definitive takeaways at this stage and even attempting to make any grand statements based on that small a sample is fool worthy. That said, usually these reports are more fun to watch when everything is going well, right?Find out everything and more that happened happened in the Twins system on Monday, starting with the transactions of the day TRANSACTIONS The Twins acquired Des Moines native and outfield prospect Malique Ziegler from the Giants in exchange for recently-DFAd first baseman Tyler Austin. Rooker went 2-for-4 with his second home run. Adam Rosales and Ronald Torreyes each went 2-for-4 as well. BLUE WAHOO BITES Pensacola 5, Mobile 7 Box Score The Blue Wahoos attempted a comeback in the ninth, but it fell just short as the winning run came to the plate. Andro Cutura made his first Double-A start. The right-hander went 3 2/3 innings. He gave up three runs (one earned) on three hits. He walked two and struck out five batters. Sam Clay came on with runners on second and third and two outs. He allowed both runners to score and three more runs before getting out of the fourth inning. He got one out in the fifth frame before being replaced by Cody Stashak. Stashak got the next five batters out, three on strikeouts. Adam Bray got the seventh inning and gave up a run on three hits and a walk. He struck out two. Ryan Mason pitched a perfect eighth inning. Mitchell Kranson got the offense started. In the second inning, his first home run of the season gave Pensacola a two-run leave. Kranson also walked twice in the game. Luis Arraez, who turns 22 on Tuesday, went 1-for-2 with three walks and drove in a run. Jordan Gore went 3-for-5 from the leadoff spot. Down four runs in the ninth inning, Caleb Hamilton connected on a two-run homer to cut the deficit in half. The team got the go-ahead, winning run to the plate but were unable to score. MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers 1, Dunedin 4 Box Score The big news before this game was that Dunedin was sending baseball’s top prospect Vlad Guerrero, Jr., on the bus to Ft. Myers for this four-game series. The slugging third baseman went 1-for-4 with a walk. Miracle starter Charlie Barnes got Guerrero out the first two times he faced him, but the third time, Guerrero singled in a run. Barnes gave up four runs on six hits, three walks and a hit batter over 5 1/3 innings. He struck out six batters. Anthony Vizcaya came on and threw 2 1/3 scoreless innings despite giving up a hit, walking three and hitting two batters. He struck out three. Johan Quezada struck out two of the four batters he faced and got out. The Miracle managed just five hits. Travis Blankenhorn went 1-for-3 with a walk and his first home run of the year. Ben Rortvedt was 1-for-3 with a walk. Royce Lewis had a single and stole both second and third base. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 3, Kane County 9 Box Score The Kernels returned home after a two-game series in Wisconsin. Andrew Cabezas, the Twins Daily choice for short-season pitcher of the year in 2018, made his first start for the Kernels. He gave up only an unearned run over the first five innings. He gave up five hits, walked one and struck out four batters. Austin Schulfer came on in relief and gave up three runs on three hits and four walks over the next 1 2/3 innings. He struck out one batter. Carlos Suniaga came on and gave up five runs (four earned) on four hits and a walk over 1 2/3 innings. He struck out three. Jose Martinez came on and after walking the first two batters and allowing a sacrifice fly, he recorded the final out. Chris Williams, the 2018 Twins Daily short-season hitter of the year, got the Kernels on the board with his first home run of the season. Later, Trey Cabbage hit a solo homer, his second blast of the year. Williams drove in a run in the eighth inning with an RBI single. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day - Mike Morin, Rochester Red Wings Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Mitchell Kranson, Pensacola Blue Wahoos PROSPECT SUMMARY Here’s a look at how the Twins Daily Top 20 Twins Prospects performed: #1 - Royce Lewis (Ft. Myers) - 1-4, 2 SB #2 - Alex Kirilloff (Pensacola) - Injured List #3 - Brusdar Graterol (Pensacola) - Did Not Pitch #4 - Trevor Larnach (Ft. Myers) - 0-4, K #5 - Wander Javier (EST) - No Game #6 - Brent Rooker (Rochester) - 2-4, HR(2), 2 RBI, 2 K #7 - Jhoan Duran (Ft. Myers) - Did Not Pitch #8 - Lewis Thorpe (Rochester) - Did Not Pitch #9 - Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) - Did Not Pitch #10 - Akil Baddoo (Ft. Myers) - 1-4, K #11 - Nick Gordon (Rochester) - Injured List #12 - Stephen Gonsalves (Rochester) - Injured List #13 - Ryan Jeffers (Ft. Myers) - Did Not Play #14 - Ben Rortvedt (Ft. Myers) - 1-3, BB, K #15 - Yunior Severino (Cedar Rapids) - 1-4, R #16 - Gilberto Celestino (Cedar Rapids) - 0-5 #17 - Zack Littell (Rochester) - Did Not Pitch #18 - LaMonte Wade (Rochester) - 0-3, BB, 2K #19 - Jorge Alcala (Pensacola) - Did Not Pitch #20 - Jose Miranda (Ft. Myers) - 0-4, K TUESDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Rochester @ Syracuse (11:05 CST) - RHP Kohl Stewart (1-0, 1.80) Pensacola - No Game Scheduled. Dunedin @ Ft. Myers (5:30 CST) - RHP Randy Dobnak (1st start) Kane County @ Cedar Rapids (6:35 CST) - RHP Luis Rijo (1st start) Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss Monday’s games. Click here to view the article
  4. Find out everything and more that happened happened in the Twins system on Monday, starting with the transactions of the day TRANSACTIONS The Twins acquired Des Moines native and outfield prospect Malique Ziegler from the Giants in exchange for recently-DFAd first baseman Tyler Austin. https://twitter.com/maliqueziegler/status/1115322652338446339 RED WINGS REPORT Rochester 4, Syracuse 5 Box Score The Red Wings used the power game early and late, but it wasn’t quite enough to overcome their deficit to the oldest team in Triple A. Syracuse has a lineup that features former Twins outfielder Carlos Gomez, former catcher Rene Rivera, Rajai Davis, Adeiny Hechavarria. Youngster Tim Tebow was not in the Syracuse lineup on this night. The Red Wings started big league veteran Justin Nicolino. The southpaw went the first four innings and gave up four runs on seven hits and a walk. He struck out two. Tyler Duffey came on and gave up one run on two hits and two walks over two innings. Yes, he struck out two batters. Mike Morin struck out four, and walked one, over two scoreless innings. John Andreoli got the Red Wings on the scoreboard with a two-run homer in the third inning. Down three going into the ninth inning, Brent Rooker hit a two-run homer to cut the deficit to one, but they were unable to tie the game. Rooker went 2-for-4 with his second home run. Adam Rosales and Ronald Torreyes each went 2-for-4 as well. BLUE WAHOO BITES Pensacola 5, Mobile 7 Box Score The Blue Wahoos attempted a comeback in the ninth, but it fell just short as the winning run came to the plate. Andro Cutura made his first Double-A start. The right-hander went 3 2/3 innings. He gave up three runs (one earned) on three hits. He walked two and struck out five batters. Sam Clay came on with runners on second and third and two outs. He allowed both runners to score and three more runs before getting out of the fourth inning. He got one out in the fifth frame before being replaced by Cody Stashak. Stashak got the next five batters out, three on strikeouts. Adam Bray got the seventh inning and gave up a run on three hits and a walk. He struck out two. Ryan Mason pitched a perfect eighth inning. Mitchell Kranson got the offense started. In the second inning, his first home run of the season gave Pensacola a two-run leave. Kranson also walked twice in the game. Luis Arraez, who turns 22 on Tuesday, went 1-for-2 with three walks and drove in a run. Jordan Gore went 3-for-5 from the leadoff spot. Down four runs in the ninth inning, Caleb Hamilton connected on a two-run homer to cut the deficit in half. The team got the go-ahead, winning run to the plate but were unable to score. MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers 1, Dunedin 4 Box Score The big news before this game was that Dunedin was sending baseball’s top prospect Vlad Guerrero, Jr., on the bus to Ft. Myers for this four-game series. The slugging third baseman went 1-for-4 with a walk. Miracle starter Charlie Barnes got Guerrero out the first two times he faced him, but the third time, Guerrero singled in a run. Barnes gave up four runs on six hits, three walks and a hit batter over 5 1/3 innings. He struck out six batters. Anthony Vizcaya came on and threw 2 1/3 scoreless innings despite giving up a hit, walking three and hitting two batters. He struck out three. Johan Quezada struck out two of the four batters he faced and got out. The Miracle managed just five hits. Travis Blankenhorn went 1-for-3 with a walk and his first home run of the year. Ben Rortvedt was 1-for-3 with a walk. Royce Lewis had a single and stole both second and third base. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 3, Kane County 9 Box Score The Kernels returned home after a two-game series in Wisconsin. Andrew Cabezas, the Twins Daily choice for short-season pitcher of the year in 2018, made his first start for the Kernels. He gave up only an unearned run over the first five innings. He gave up five hits, walked one and struck out four batters. Austin Schulfer came on in relief and gave up three runs on three hits and four walks over the next 1 2/3 innings. He struck out one batter. Carlos Suniaga came on and gave up five runs (four earned) on four hits and a walk over 1 2/3 innings. He struck out three. Jose Martinez came on and after walking the first two batters and allowing a sacrifice fly, he recorded the final out. Chris Williams, the 2018 Twins Daily short-season hitter of the year, got the Kernels on the board with his first home run of the season. Later, Trey Cabbage hit a solo homer, his second blast of the year. Williams drove in a run in the eighth inning with an RBI single. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day - Mike Morin, Rochester Red Wings Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Mitchell Kranson, Pensacola Blue Wahoos PROSPECT SUMMARY Here’s a look at how the Twins Daily Top 20 Twins Prospects performed: #1 - Royce Lewis (Ft. Myers) - 1-4, 2 SB #2 - Alex Kirilloff (Pensacola) - Injured List #3 - Brusdar Graterol (Pensacola) - Did Not Pitch #4 - Trevor Larnach (Ft. Myers) - 0-4, K #5 - Wander Javier (EST) - No Game #6 - Brent Rooker (Rochester) - 2-4, HR(2), 2 RBI, 2 K #7 - Jhoan Duran (Ft. Myers) - Did Not Pitch #8 - Lewis Thorpe (Rochester) - Did Not Pitch #9 - Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) - Did Not Pitch #10 - Akil Baddoo (Ft. Myers) - 1-4, K #11 - Nick Gordon (Rochester) - Injured List #12 - Stephen Gonsalves (Rochester) - Injured List #13 - Ryan Jeffers (Ft. Myers) - Did Not Play #14 - Ben Rortvedt (Ft. Myers) - 1-3, BB, K #15 - Yunior Severino (Cedar Rapids) - 1-4, R #16 - Gilberto Celestino (Cedar Rapids) - 0-5 #17 - Zack Littell (Rochester) - Did Not Pitch #18 - LaMonte Wade (Rochester) - 0-3, BB, 2K #19 - Jorge Alcala (Pensacola) - Did Not Pitch #20 - Jose Miranda (Ft. Myers) - 0-4, K TUESDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Rochester @ Syracuse (11:05 CST) - RHP Kohl Stewart (1-0, 1.80) Pensacola - No Game Scheduled. Dunedin @ Ft. Myers (5:30 CST) - RHP Randy Dobnak (1st start) Kane County @ Cedar Rapids (6:35 CST) - RHP Luis Rijo (1st start) Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss Monday’s games.
  5. Labor Day always marks the final regular season minor league games. The Rochester Red Wings and Chattanooga Lookouts seasons ended. Three more Red Wings players were called up to the Twins following the game. The Kernels, whose playoff run begins on Wednesday, began six hours late. See how they did and who they will play starting Wednesday. Ft. Myers and Elizabethton had the day off as they prepare for their upcoming playoff series.Keep reading to find out more on the night in the Twins minor league system on Monday afternoon, please feel free to discuss and ask questions. TRANSACTIONS The Twins announced that RHP Chase De Jong and John Curtiss will also be recalled and in uniform for the Twins on Tuesday.Logan Morrison has been placed on the 60-day disabled list, allowing the Twins to add Gregorio Petit to the roster and promote him as well. Tyler Watson started for the Kernels. The southpaw had a Quality Start. Despite giving up nine hits, he gave up just three runs over six innings. He struck out seven batters without a walk. Calvin Faucher threw a scoreless inning as well. Ricky Ramirez struck out two in a perfect eighth inning. The Kernels took a 1-0 lead in the top of the second inning. Jacob Pearson doubled and then scored on a single from Trey Cabbage. Trevor Larnach went 2-for-4. Following his double, the Twins top 2017 pick scored on a Michael Helman single. These two teams will begin a playoff series on Wednesday, also in Beloit. E-TWINS E-TALK Elizabethton Box Score The E-Twins begin the Appalachian League championship series on Tuesday. STARS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Hitter of the Day: Kennys Vargas, Rochester Red Wings (2-3, BB, 2-2B(23)). Twins Daily Pitcher of the Day: Chase De Jong, Rochester Red Wings (5 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 7 K) PROSPECT SUMMARY Here’s a look at how the Twins Daily Midseason Top 20 Twins Prospects performed. #1 - Royce Lewis (Ft. Myers) - No Game Scheduled #2 - Alex Kirilloff (Ft. Myers) - No Game Scheduled #3 - Brusdar Graterol (Ft. Myers) - No Game Scheduled #4 - Nick Gordon (Rochester) - 0-3, BB, R, K #5 - Stephen Gonsalves (Minnesota) - Did not pitch #6 - Trevor Larnach (Cedar Rapids) - #7 - Brent Rooker (Chattanooga) - 0-4, 2 K #8 - Akil Baddoo (Cedar Rapids) - #9 -Wander Javier - out of for the season #10 - Zack Littell (Rochester) - Did not pitch #11 - Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) - Did not pitch #12 - LaMonte Wade (Rochester) - 1-5, 2 K #13 - Travis Blankenhorn (Ft. Myers) - No Game Scheduled #14 - Lewis Thorpe (Rochester) - Did not pitch #15 - Ben Rortvedt (Ft. Myers) - No Game Scheduled #16 - Yunior Severino (Elizabethton) - No Game Scheduled #17 - Lewin Diaz (Ft. Myers) - Out for the season (wrist) #18 - Ryan Jeffers (Cedar Rapids) - #19 - Jacob Pearson (Cedar Rapids) - #20 - Luis Arraez (Chattanooga) - 2-4, 2 RBI #21 - Jose Miranda (Ft. Myers) - No Game Scheduled *Since Wander Javier is out, I’d add #21 to the list. TUESDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Rochester - Season Complete Chattanooga - Season Complete Palm Beach @ Ft. Myers (5:30 CST) - RHP Andro Cutura Cedar Rapids - Playoff series starts on Wednesday Elizabethton @ Princeton (6:00 CST) - RHP Austin Schulfer (Game 1 of Appy League championship series) GCL Twins - Season Completed Please feel free to ask any questions about Monday’s games, or ask any questions you may have. Click here to view the article
  6. Keep reading to find out more on the night in the Twins minor league system on Monday afternoon, please feel free to discuss and ask questions. TRANSACTIONS The Twins announced that RHP Chase De Jong and John Curtiss will also be recalled and in uniform for the Twins on Tuesday. Logan Morrison has been placed on the 60-day disabled list, allowing the Twins to add Gregorio Petit to the roster and promote him as well. RED WINGS REPORT Rochester 2, Lehigh Valley 4 (10 innings) Box Score Through nine innings, this was a 1-1 game. Then came extra frames when the Red Wings gave up three runs and were only able to counter with one run in the bottom of the inning. The Red Wings finish their season with a record of 64-76. Chase De Jong gave up one run on four hits and a walk through the first five innings. He struck out seven. John Curtiss struck out two in his inning. Ryan Eades struck out three batters over his two scoreless innings. Ryan Harper pitched a scoreless ninth inning, but he gave up three runs (two earned) on four hits in the tenth frame. He struck out two. Luke Bard came on and got the final out. Kennys Vargas likely played his final game in the Twins organization as he can become a free agent at season’s end. He went 2-for-3 with a walk and his 22nd and 23rd doubles of the year. A night after his walk off homer, Zander Wiel added his first AAA triple. Victor Tademo made his first Red Wings appearance and had a single. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 4, Jackson 2 Box Score Sean Poppen put together another really solid, quality start, but he gets another no decision because he left the game with the Lookouts down 2-0. Down 2-0 going into the eighth inning, Jimmy Kerrigan’s sixth home run got the Lookouts on the scoreboard. In the top of the ninth, Luis Arraez came up with the bases loaded and delivered a two-run single to give the team a lead. Kerrigan came back up and provided a little insurance with a sacrifice fly. Mitchell Kranson went 2-for-3 including his ninth double in the ninth inning. Arraez went 2-for-4. Poppen gave up two runs on seven hits over 6 1/3 innings. He walked one and struck out five. Tyler Jay came on to get the final two outs of the seventh inning and worked a perfect eighth inning as well. Devin Smeltzer gave up a hit, but he struck out two in a scoreless ninth inning for his fourth save. MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers Box Score The Miracle begin their Florida State League playoff series on Tuesday night. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 2, Beloit 3 Box Score This game was scheduled for 2:00 central time. At 8:20 p.m., the game began in Beloit after a far-too-long rain delay that was necessitated by the Snappers needing a win to make the playoffs. https://twitter.com/CRKernels/status/1036774870254845952 Tyler Watson started for the Kernels. The southpaw had a Quality Start. Despite giving up nine hits, he gave up just three runs over six innings. He struck out seven batters without a walk. Calvin Faucher threw a scoreless inning as well. Ricky Ramirez struck out two in a perfect eighth inning. The Kernels took a 1-0 lead in the top of the second inning. Jacob Pearson doubled and then scored on a single from Trey Cabbage. Trevor Larnach went 2-for-4. Following his double, the Twins top 2017 pick scored on a Michael Helman single. These two teams will begin a playoff series on Wednesday, also in Beloit. E-TWINS E-TALK Elizabethton Box Score The E-Twins begin the Appalachian League championship series on Tuesday. STARS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Hitter of the Day: Kennys Vargas, Rochester Red Wings (2-3, BB, 2-2B(23)). Twins Daily Pitcher of the Day: Chase De Jong, Rochester Red Wings (5 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 7 K) PROSPECT SUMMARY Here’s a look at how the Twins Daily Midseason Top 20 Twins Prospects performed. #1 - Royce Lewis (Ft. Myers) - No Game Scheduled #2 - Alex Kirilloff (Ft. Myers) - No Game Scheduled #3 - Brusdar Graterol (Ft. Myers) - No Game Scheduled #4 - Nick Gordon (Rochester) - 0-3, BB, R, K #5 - Stephen Gonsalves (Minnesota) - Did not pitch #6 - Trevor Larnach (Cedar Rapids) - #7 - Brent Rooker (Chattanooga) - 0-4, 2 K #8 - Akil Baddoo (Cedar Rapids) - #9 -Wander Javier - out of for the season #10 - Zack Littell (Rochester) - Did not pitch #11 - Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) - Did not pitch #12 - LaMonte Wade (Rochester) - 1-5, 2 K #13 - Travis Blankenhorn (Ft. Myers) - No Game Scheduled #14 - Lewis Thorpe (Rochester) - Did not pitch #15 - Ben Rortvedt (Ft. Myers) - No Game Scheduled #16 - Yunior Severino (Elizabethton) - No Game Scheduled #17 - Lewin Diaz (Ft. Myers) - Out for the season (wrist) #18 - Ryan Jeffers (Cedar Rapids) - #19 - Jacob Pearson (Cedar Rapids) - #20 - Luis Arraez (Chattanooga) - 2-4, 2 RBI #21 - Jose Miranda (Ft. Myers) - No Game Scheduled *Since Wander Javier is out, I’d add #21 to the list. TUESDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Rochester - Season Complete Chattanooga - Season Complete Palm Beach @ Ft. Myers (5:30 CST) - RHP Andro Cutura Cedar Rapids - Playoff series starts on Wednesday Elizabethton @ Princeton (6:00 CST) - RHP Austin Schulfer (Game 1 of Appy League championship series) GCL Twins - Season Completed Please feel free to ask any questions about Monday’s games, or ask any questions you may have.
  7. It was a day full of close games and extra innings in the Twins minor league system. Two games went to extra innings. One game ended with a walk off in the bottom of the ninth inning. Alex Kirilloff and Brent Rooker continued to rake. And don’t forget you can Get To Know Elizabethton first baseman and 2018 eighth-round pick Chris Williams.Keep reading to find out more on the night in the Twins minor league system on Monday. As always, please feel free to discuss and ask questions. TRANSACTIONS Officially, Adalberto Mejia was called up to the Twins with Alan Busenitz being sent down to Rochester.Infielder Alex Perez has returned to the Chattanooga Lookouts. Also, infielder Chris Paul has been activated from the disabled list. RHP Cody Stashak was activated from the temporary Inactive List. RHP Todd Van Steensel was placed on the disabled list.RED WINGS REPORT Rochester Box Score No Game Scheduled. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 4, Pensacola 3 Box Score Down 3-2 going into the bottom of the ninth, Lookouts baseball found itself with a few heroes. Mitchell Kranson was called upon to pinch hit, and he hit a game-tying home run, his second since joining the Lookouts. Tanner English followed with a triple. After two batters were walked intentionally, Chris Paul provided the walk off single. Brent Rooker led the offense. The powerful slugger went 2-for-3 with his 18th home run of the season. Paul went 2-for-5 in the game. Jaylin Davis also went 2-for-5 on the night. It was Sam Clay’s turn to play the role of “Opener” on Monday night. He gave up one run on two hits and a walk in his inning. He struck out one. Anthony Marzi then came on and worked the next five innings. He gave up just one run despite five hits, three walks and a hit batter. He struck out four. Andrew Vasquez got five outs, two on strikeouts, and Ryne Harper struck out the one batter he faced. MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers 11, Jupiter 12 (11 innings) Box Score The Miracle began a road trip on Monday, and it was a ‘70s Road Trip… KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 0, Lansing 2 Box Score The Kernels got another quality start from righty Randy Dobnak. He gave up two runs (one earned) on seven hits and a walk over six innings. He struck out four. Melvi Acosta came on and threw two scoreless innings. He gave up two hits and walked one. Unfortunately, the Kernels managed just two hits and two walks in the game. Andrew Bechtold hit his 16th doubles while Ariel Montesino knocked his second two-bagger. E-TWINS E-TALK Elizabethton , Princeton Box Score The doubleheader at Princeton was cancelled. Obviously with a short-season, there are fewer off days to make up games, so instead of postponing, they need to cancel them. GCL TWINS TALK GCL Twins 4, GCL Rays 5 (10 innings) Box Score Another extra innings game for a Twins affiliate in Florida… Same result, unfortunately. The Twins scored two runs in the top of the 10th inning, but then gave up three runs in the bottom of the inning. Prelander Berroa started and gave up two runs on three hits over four innings. He walked four and struck out four. Niklas Rimmel, a 19-year-old from Germany, made his first pro appearance in the States. He gave up two hits over two scoreless innings. Michael Montero gave up a hit and walked one but did not allow a run over his two innings. JT Perez came on and gave up two runs (1 earned) on two hits over 1 2/3 innings. He struck out two. Osiris German came on and gave up a home run that ended the game. Gabe Snyder led the offense. He went 2-for-4 with his fourth double. LaRon Smith and Janigson Villalobos both went 1-for-3 with two walks. Smith added his first double. Hunter Lee added his first GCL double, and Willie Joe Garry, Jr., added his third double. STARS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Hitter of the Day: Alex Kirilloff, Ft. Myers Miracle (3-4, BB, 3-2B(11). Twins Daily Pitcher of the Day: Randy Dobnak, Cedar Rapids Kernels (6 IP, 7 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 4 K) PROSPECT SUMMARY Here’s a look at how the Twins Daily Top 20 Twins Prospects performed. Please note that this Prospect Summary has been updated. #1 - Royce Lewis (Ft. Myers) - 1-6, 2B(3), 3 RBI, R, K #2 - Alex Kirilloff (Ft. Myers) - 3-4, 3-2B(11), #3 - Brusdar Graterol (Ft. Myers) - Did not pitch. #4 - Nick Gordon (Rochester) - Did not play. #5 - Stephen Gonsalves (Rochester) - Did not pitch. #6 - Trevor Larnach (Elizabethton) - Did not play #7 - Brent Rooker (Chattanooga) - 2-3, 2 BB, HR(18), K, R, RBI #8 - Akil Baddoo (Cedar Rapids) - 0-3, BB, K #9 -Wander Javier - out of for the season #10 - Zack Littell (Rochester) - Did not pitch. #11 - Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) - Did not pitch. #12 - LaMonte Wade (Rochester) - Did not play. #13 - Travis Blankenhorn (Ft. Myers) - 1-5, 2 R, 2 K #14 - Lewis Thorpe (Chattanooga) - Did not pitch. #15 - Ben Rortvedt (Ft. Myers) - 1-5, R, K #16 - Yunior Severino (Elizabethton) - Did not play #17 - Lewin Diaz (Ft. Myers) - 0-2 #18 - Ryan Jeffers (Elizabethton) - Did not play. #19 - Jacob Pearson (Cedar Rapids) - Did not play. #20 - Luis Arraez (Chattanooga) - Did not play. #21 - Jose Miranda (Cedar Rapids) - 0-4 *I figured that since Wander Javier is out, I’d add #21 to the list. TUESDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Rochester @ Indianapolis (6:05 CST) - LHP Stephen Gonsalves (6-3. 3.34 ERA) Pensacola @ Chattanooga (7:05 CST) - TBD Ft. Myers @ Jupiter (5:30 CST) - LHP Charlie Barnes (4-5, 2.93 ERA) Cedar Rapids @ Lansing (6:05 CST) - RHP Blayne Enlow (1-2, 3.49 ERA) Elizabethton @ Burlington (6:00 CST) - LHP Kody Funderburk (0-0, 3.55 ERA) GCL Rays @ GCL Twins (11:00 am CST) - TBD Please feel free to ask any questions about Monday’s games, or ask any questions you may have. Click here to view the article
  8. Keep reading to find out more on the night in the Twins minor league system on Monday. As always, please feel free to discuss and ask questions. TRANSACTIONS Officially, Adalberto Mejia was called up to the Twins with Alan Busenitz being sent down to Rochester. Infielder Alex Perez has returned to the Chattanooga Lookouts. Also, infielder Chris Paul has been activated from the disabled list. RHP Cody Stashak was activated from the temporary Inactive List. RHP Todd Van Steensel was placed on the disabled list. RED WINGS REPORT Rochester Box Score No Game Scheduled. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 4, Pensacola 3 Box Score Down 3-2 going into the bottom of the ninth, Lookouts baseball found itself with a few heroes. Mitchell Kranson was called upon to pinch hit, and he hit a game-tying home run, his second since joining the Lookouts. Tanner English followed with a triple. After two batters were walked intentionally, Chris Paul provided the walk off single. Brent Rooker led the offense. The powerful slugger went 2-for-3 with his 18th home run of the season. Paul went 2-for-5 in the game. Jaylin Davis also went 2-for-5 on the night. It was Sam Clay’s turn to play the role of “Opener” on Monday night. He gave up one run on two hits and a walk in his inning. He struck out one. Anthony Marzi then came on and worked the next five innings. He gave up just one run despite five hits, three walks and a hit batter. He struck out four. Andrew Vasquez got five outs, two on strikeouts, and Ryne Harper struck out the one batter he faced. MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers 11, Jupiter 12 (11 innings) Box Score The Miracle began a road trip on Monday, and it was a ‘70s Road Trip… https://twitter.com/MiracleBaseball/status/1021415677138173954 This game went back and forth starting in the ninth. One run given up by the Miracle in the bottom of the ninth tied it up. The Miracle scored three runs in the top of the tenth inning, but then they gave up three more in the bottom of the inning. The Miracle then scored a run in the top of the 11th, but they gave up two in the bottom of the 11th to take a tough loss. Bryan Sammons made his Florida State League debut, and it was a struggle. The left-hander gave up six runs (five earned) on eight hits, two walks and a hit batter in just three innings. He struck out two. Colton Davis came on and struck out two over two scoreless, hitless innings. Clark Beeker came on in long relief. He gave up four runs (three earned) on five hits over 4 2/3 innings. He struck out three. Jovani Moran came on for the 11th inning, and he was charged with two runs (one earned) on two hits. He recorded two outs, one via the strikeout. Yes, the hitting hero for the Miracle was again Alex Kirilloff. He went 3-for-4 with a walk and three more doubles. He now has 11 with the Miracle and 31 on the season. Royce Lewis gave the Miracle an early,second-inning lead with a bases-clearing double. https://twitter.com/JTScouting/status/1021531865327525888 KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 0, Lansing 2 Box Score The Kernels got another quality start from righty Randy Dobnak. He gave up two runs (one earned) on seven hits and a walk over six innings. He struck out four. Melvi Acosta came on and threw two scoreless innings. He gave up two hits and walked one. Unfortunately, the Kernels managed just two hits and two walks in the game. Andrew Bechtold hit his 16th doubles while Ariel Montesino knocked his second two-bagger. E-TWINS E-TALK Elizabethton , Princeton Box Score The doubleheader at Princeton was cancelled. Obviously with a short-season, there are fewer off days to make up games, so instead of postponing, they need to cancel them. GCL TWINS TALK GCL Twins 4, GCL Rays 5 (10 innings) Box Score Another extra innings game for a Twins affiliate in Florida… Same result, unfortunately. The Twins scored two runs in the top of the 10th inning, but then gave up three runs in the bottom of the inning. Prelander Berroa started and gave up two runs on three hits over four innings. He walked four and struck out four. Niklas Rimmel, a 19-year-old from Germany, made his first pro appearance in the States. He gave up two hits over two scoreless innings. Michael Montero gave up a hit and walked one but did not allow a run over his two innings. JT Perez came on and gave up two runs (1 earned) on two hits over 1 2/3 innings. He struck out two. Osiris German came on and gave up a home run that ended the game. Gabe Snyder led the offense. He went 2-for-4 with his fourth double. LaRon Smith and Janigson Villalobos both went 1-for-3 with two walks. Smith added his first double. Hunter Lee added his first GCL double, and Willie Joe Garry, Jr., added his third double. STARS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Hitter of the Day: Alex Kirilloff, Ft. Myers Miracle (3-4, BB, 3-2B(11). Twins Daily Pitcher of the Day: Randy Dobnak, Cedar Rapids Kernels (6 IP, 7 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 4 K) PROSPECT SUMMARY Here’s a look at how the Twins Daily Top 20 Twins Prospects performed. Please note that this Prospect Summary has been updated. #1 - Royce Lewis (Ft. Myers) - 1-6, 2B(3), 3 RBI, R, K #2 - Alex Kirilloff (Ft. Myers) - 3-4, 3-2B(11), #3 - Brusdar Graterol (Ft. Myers) - Did not pitch. #4 - Nick Gordon (Rochester) - Did not play. #5 - Stephen Gonsalves (Rochester) - Did not pitch. #6 - Trevor Larnach (Elizabethton) - Did not play #7 - Brent Rooker (Chattanooga) - 2-3, 2 BB, HR(18), K, R, RBI #8 - Akil Baddoo (Cedar Rapids) - 0-3, BB, K #9 -Wander Javier - out of for the season #10 - Zack Littell (Rochester) - Did not pitch. #11 - Blayne Enlow (Cedar Rapids) - Did not pitch. #12 - LaMonte Wade (Rochester) - Did not play. #13 - Travis Blankenhorn (Ft. Myers) - 1-5, 2 R, 2 K #14 - Lewis Thorpe (Chattanooga) - Did not pitch. #15 - Ben Rortvedt (Ft. Myers) - 1-5, R, K #16 - Yunior Severino (Elizabethton) - Did not play #17 - Lewin Diaz (Ft. Myers) - 0-2 #18 - Ryan Jeffers (Elizabethton) - Did not play. #19 - Jacob Pearson (Cedar Rapids) - Did not play. #20 - Luis Arraez (Chattanooga) - Did not play. #21 - Jose Miranda (Cedar Rapids) - 0-4 *I figured that since Wander Javier is out, I’d add #21 to the list. TUESDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Rochester @ Indianapolis (6:05 CST) - LHP Stephen Gonsalves (6-3. 3.34 ERA) Pensacola @ Chattanooga (7:05 CST) - TBD Ft. Myers @ Jupiter (5:30 CST) - LHP Charlie Barnes (4-5, 2.93 ERA) Cedar Rapids @ Lansing (6:05 CST) - RHP Blayne Enlow (1-2, 3.49 ERA) Elizabethton @ Burlington (6:00 CST) - LHP Kody Funderburk (0-0, 3.55 ERA) GCL Rays @ GCL Twins (11:00 am CST) - TBD Please feel free to ask any questions about Monday’s games, or ask any questions you may have.
  9. Now that the 2018 Minnesota Twins Prospect Handbook is complete (order paperback or e-book), it’s time to get to know or catch up with some of those prospects. Today, we get to know Mitchell Kranson. The Twins drafted the catcher from the University of California in Berkeley with their ninth-round draft pick in 2016. He put together a solid first full season. Berkeley has become a team that the Twins draft many players from. They didn’t draft any in 2017, but in addition to Kranson, the Twins took Alex Schick (6th) and Ryan Mason (13th) from Berkeley. In 2015, the Twins took Chris Paul in the sixth round. In 2014, the Twins took Trevor Hildenberger in the 22nd round and then Michael Theofanopoulos in the 30th round.Kranson spent four years at Cal, and after the draft, he went to Elizabethton for the remainder of the 2016 season. In 2017, he began the year in Cedar Rapids. After helping the Kernels to a first-half playoff berth, he moved up to Ft. Myers for the remainder of the season. Today, we have the opportunity to get to know a little bit about Mitchell Kranson. Thank you Mitchell! Seth Stohs (SS): Growing up in California, who were some of your favorite players and teams? Do you follow other professional or college sports teams throughout the offseason? Mitchell Kranson (MK): I grew up an Oakland A's fan. I am a Golden State Warrior fan as most of my Twins teammates know since I put almost every game on the TV whenever they are on. SS: What was your recruitment as a high school athlete like for you, and what was it about Berkeley that made it the right choice for you? MK: My recruitment in high school was a lot of fun. Stressful at times, but I really enjoyed the whole process. I took my time and didn't commit to a school before I was ready. I did my research and visited many schools, but in the end, the combination of world-class academics and being able to play in the Pac 12 made my decision to go to CAL one of the best decisions of my life. SS: You played all over the field during your four college seasons. Tell us about your position history there, and do you think that has been beneficial for you as you’ve started your pro career? MK: I have always taken pride in being able to play multiple positions. I want to be in the lineup every day and if playing more positions gives me a better opportunity to be in the game, then I have no problem making sure I am ready to play all over the field. I think it has really helped me in my pro career so far! SS: What was the highlight (or two) of your time in college at Cal? Any memories that really stand out? MK: My biggest highlight of my time at CAL was hitting a walk-off home run in the 14th inning of the Texas A&M regional on ESPN. SS: What was it like for you leading up to the draft? Were there a lot of scouts, and specifically, did you speak with scouts from the Twins? MK: Leading up to the draft my senior year I had heard from nearly every team and spoken extensively with a few, including the Twins. It was a nervous yet exciting time! SS: The Twins selected you with their ninth-round pick in 2016. Was that about where you were expecting to be selected? What were your initial thoughts when it was the Twins that selected you? MK: I had a pretty good idea that I would be selected on the second day of the draft. I was extremely excited that the Twins decided to pick me and give me a chance to live out my dream of playing professional baseball SS: What was the transition to pro baseball like for you, both on and off the field? MK: I felt very prepared coming from Cal and playing in the Pac 12 for professional baseball. Nothing can completely prepare you for the grind of playing every day but after my first full season I learned it's all about preparation and sticking to a routine. SS: Your season has been done for a couple of months now. Have you had a chance to reflect on your season? In doing so, what are your thoughts on your first full season as a professional baseball player? MK: Yes, I have had a chance to reflect on my season. I was very happy with my season. I was a part of two great teams and had a bunch of great coaches make my first full season a memorable one. I have a lot to work on and that's what the off season is for so I will be ready for Spring Training. SS: You were part of a Cedar Rapids team that earned a playoff berth in the first half, and helped the Miracle to the second-half playoff spot. As a player, how do you weigh the idea of winning versus the idea of development and advancement up the organizational ladder? MK: It's always fun to be able to play for something. We were able to do that in Cedar Rapids and in Fort Myers. It was obvious that when our team was winning, our personal stats were better. It was an honor to be a part of both playoff teams. I think we have a really good group of guys. SS: What was that adjustment like for you from the Midwest League to the Florida State League? Did you notice much difference? MK: The biggest difference was the heat and humidity. Catching was tougher because you're just soaking wet of sweat. SS: What were your thoughts about playing for Tommy Watkins and Brian Dinkelman, and then Doug Mientkiewicz and Steve Singleton? Maybe some styles are different, but were you able to glean information from each of them? MK: Playing for Tommy and Dink in my first experience of full season ball was great. They were extremely loose but when it was time to turn it on, they were serious. They were great resources to have while in Cedar Rapids and with their help and knowledge of the game, they absolutely helped me get the mid season call up to Fort Myers. I loved playing for Doug. Both he and Sing really helped me with my hitting approach. It would be ridiculous to not listen to Doug after the career he had. I was all ears trying to learn as much as I could from him. SS: How would you describe yourself as a player? What are your strengths? MK: I would describe myself as someone who comes prepared to play everyday and will do whatever it takes to win. I love to hit, but I know that I have the defense to not just be a hitter. SS: What are the areas of your game that you hope to work on this offseason to improve as you look to 2018? MK: I felt pretty consistent last season hitting, but I want to keep improving on being consistent. I also have continued to improve my catching! SS: Have you been able to do to get away from baseball this offseason at all? What do you do outside of baseball for fun? MK: GOLF. and Golf a lot! SS: At what point do you not only start thinking about the 2018 season, but when do your workouts and preparation begin? Do you think you’ll do anything new or different after going through a full season? MK: After getting home, I took about a week and a half off. I think I did three weeks of pre training where I would go to gym and get my body ready for my actual training with my trainer that started October 1st. I've been in the gym since then, mostly twice a day working with my trainer getting my body ready. It really helped me last year so I have committed even more this year . SS: Did you learn anything about yourself, or did anything surprise you about working through a full season? MK: All the days seem to be the same. Some days I didn't know what day of the week it was because they all just started to blend together. With that said, I learned how to turn the switch on to be ready to compete each and every day! SS: Who are some of the people who have helped you get to this point in your career? MK: I have had a lot of people help me get to the point I am in my career. Of course, my family has helped me out with their constant support and then all of my coaches as well. They all taught me how to play the game the right way. Also, my trainer, JJ, has changed my career and my body! SS: There are probably some high school baseball players reading this. What would one piece of advice be that you would share with them, or share with a 14-year-old Mitchell? MK: I would say that when being recruited, enjoy it and take it all in, but make sure that you never give a coach a reason to cross you off his list of players for something that doesn't have to do with your baseball abilities. SS: Favorite Baseball Movie? MK: The Rookie Thank you very much to Mitchell Kranson for sharing his responses with the Twins Daily readers. Feel free to discuss or ask questions in the comments below. Click here to view the article
  10. Kranson spent four years at Cal, and after the draft, he went to Elizabethton for the remainder of the 2016 season. In 2017, he began the year in Cedar Rapids. After helping the Kernels to a first-half playoff berth, he moved up to Ft. Myers for the remainder of the season. Today, we have the opportunity to get to know a little bit about Mitchell Kranson. Thank you Mitchell! Seth Stohs (SS): Growing up in California, who were some of your favorite players and teams? Do you follow other professional or college sports teams throughout the offseason? Mitchell Kranson (MK): I grew up an Oakland A's fan. I am a Golden State Warrior fan as most of my Twins teammates know since I put almost every game on the TV whenever they are on. SS: What was your recruitment as a high school athlete like for you, and what was it about Berkeley that made it the right choice for you? MK: My recruitment in high school was a lot of fun. Stressful at times, but I really enjoyed the whole process. I took my time and didn't commit to a school before I was ready. I did my research and visited many schools, but in the end, the combination of world-class academics and being able to play in the Pac 12 made my decision to go to CAL one of the best decisions of my life. SS: You played all over the field during your four college seasons. Tell us about your position history there, and do you think that has been beneficial for you as you’ve started your pro career? MK: I have always taken pride in being able to play multiple positions. I want to be in the lineup every day and if playing more positions gives me a better opportunity to be in the game, then I have no problem making sure I am ready to play all over the field. I think it has really helped me in my pro career so far! SS: What was the highlight (or two) of your time in college at Cal? Any memories that really stand out? MK: My biggest highlight of my time at CAL was hitting a walk-off home run in the 14th inning of the Texas A&M regional on ESPN. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iuc3OpOfQek SS: What was it like for you leading up to the draft? Were there a lot of scouts, and specifically, did you speak with scouts from the Twins? MK: Leading up to the draft my senior year I had heard from nearly every team and spoken extensively with a few, including the Twins. It was a nervous yet exciting time! SS: The Twins selected you with their ninth-round pick in 2016. Was that about where you were expecting to be selected? What were your initial thoughts when it was the Twins that selected you? MK: I had a pretty good idea that I would be selected on the second day of the draft. I was extremely excited that the Twins decided to pick me and give me a chance to live out my dream of playing professional baseball SS: What was the transition to pro baseball like for you, both on and off the field? MK: I felt very prepared coming from Cal and playing in the Pac 12 for professional baseball. Nothing can completely prepare you for the grind of playing every day but after my first full season I learned it's all about preparation and sticking to a routine. SS: Your season has been done for a couple of months now. Have you had a chance to reflect on your season? In doing so, what are your thoughts on your first full season as a professional baseball player? MK: Yes, I have had a chance to reflect on my season. I was very happy with my season. I was a part of two great teams and had a bunch of great coaches make my first full season a memorable one. I have a lot to work on and that's what the off season is for so I will be ready for Spring Training. SS: You were part of a Cedar Rapids team that earned a playoff berth in the first half, and helped the Miracle to the second-half playoff spot. As a player, how do you weigh the idea of winning versus the idea of development and advancement up the organizational ladder? MK: It's always fun to be able to play for something. We were able to do that in Cedar Rapids and in Fort Myers. It was obvious that when our team was winning, our personal stats were better. It was an honor to be a part of both playoff teams. I think we have a really good group of guys. SS: What was that adjustment like for you from the Midwest League to the Florida State League? Did you notice much difference? MK: The biggest difference was the heat and humidity. Catching was tougher because you're just soaking wet of sweat. SS: What were your thoughts about playing for Tommy Watkins and Brian Dinkelman, and then Doug Mientkiewicz and Steve Singleton? Maybe some styles are different, but were you able to glean information from each of them? MK: Playing for Tommy and Dink in my first experience of full season ball was great. They were extremely loose but when it was time to turn it on, they were serious. They were great resources to have while in Cedar Rapids and with their help and knowledge of the game, they absolutely helped me get the mid season call up to Fort Myers. I loved playing for Doug. Both he and Sing really helped me with my hitting approach. It would be ridiculous to not listen to Doug after the career he had. I was all ears trying to learn as much as I could from him. SS: How would you describe yourself as a player? What are your strengths? MK: I would describe myself as someone who comes prepared to play everyday and will do whatever it takes to win. I love to hit, but I know that I have the defense to not just be a hitter. SS: What are the areas of your game that you hope to work on this offseason to improve as you look to 2018? MK: I felt pretty consistent last season hitting, but I want to keep improving on being consistent. I also have continued to improve my catching! SS: Have you been able to do to get away from baseball this offseason at all? What do you do outside of baseball for fun? MK: GOLF. and Golf a lot! SS: At what point do you not only start thinking about the 2018 season, but when do your workouts and preparation begin? Do you think you’ll do anything new or different after going through a full season? MK: After getting home, I took about a week and a half off. I think I did three weeks of pre training where I would go to gym and get my body ready for my actual training with my trainer that started October 1st. I've been in the gym since then, mostly twice a day working with my trainer getting my body ready. It really helped me last year so I have committed even more this year . SS: Did you learn anything about yourself, or did anything surprise you about working through a full season? MK: All the days seem to be the same. Some days I didn't know what day of the week it was because they all just started to blend together. With that said, I learned how to turn the switch on to be ready to compete each and every day! SS: Who are some of the people who have helped you get to this point in your career? MK: I have had a lot of people help me get to the point I am in my career. Of course, my family has helped me out with their constant support and then all of my coaches as well. They all taught me how to play the game the right way. Also, my trainer, JJ, has changed my career and my body! SS: There are probably some high school baseball players reading this. What would one piece of advice be that you would share with them, or share with a 14-year-old Mitchell? MK: I would say that when being recruited, enjoy it and take it all in, but make sure that you never give a coach a reason to cross you off his list of players for something that doesn't have to do with your baseball abilities. SS: Favorite Baseball Movie? MK: The Rookie Thank you very much to Mitchell Kranson for sharing his responses with the Twins Daily readers. Feel free to discuss or ask questions in the comments below.
  11. Let’s start with the recent transactions: Kohl Stewart was removed from the DL to pitch for the Lookouts. IF Joe Cronin, who was promoted from Cedar Rapids to Ft. Myers last week, was now promoted to Chattanooga. RHP Alex Muren was sent back to Ft. Myers IF Ariel Montesino was promoted from Elizabethton to Ft. Myers. C Jhon Alvarez was promoted from the GCL to Ft. Myers. The Twins signed IF Daniel Crespo and assigned him to the GCL. Needing players for their playoff run, the Twins have signed Crespo, who was the 34th round pick of the Yankees in 2013 out of Appalachian State. He just turned 26. He spent 2014 and 2015 in the independent Frontier League. I’m not sure where he was most recently. RED WINGS REPORT Rochester 3, Pawtucket 5 Box Score Felix Jorge was on the mound. The right-hander gave up three runs on seven hits and two walks over the first 4.1 innings. Luke Bard had an interesting outing. He walked two and struck out four in 1.2 innings. Just one of seven batters even put the ball in play off of him. Michael Kohn gave up a home run in the seventh inning. Jake Reed then gave up one run on three hits in his inning. Yohan Pino gave up a hit in a scoreless ninth inning. Byungho Park went 2-4. Levi Michael hit his first AAA double and drove in two runs. Lehigh Valley was rained out on Saturday, so the Red Wings magic number to take the IL wild card spot sits at two with two games to play. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 4, Montgomery 3 Box Score The Lookouts already had a playoff spot. They earned that in the first half. Then they went out and had an even better second half. Kohl Stewart returned from the DL to make the start in this one. He gave up two runs in the first inning but settled in after that. He gave up just those two runs on four hits and three walks in three innings. DJ Baxendale came on and was able to work the next 4.2 innings without allowing any more runs. He gave up three hits, a walk and struck out three. Todd Van Steensel gave walked one but got the final out of the eighth inning. In that time, LaMonte Wade hit a two-run homer (his seventh) to tie the game at two. In the top of the ninth, the Lookouts took the lead when Wade doubled in Edgar Corcino (who had led off with a double). Later, Max Murphy singled in Wade with the fourth run. So Nick Anderson came into the game to protect a two-run lead. He gave up one run on two hits, but he recorded his ninth save for the Lookouts. Wade led the way going 3-4 with his 22nd double, seventh home run and third RBI. Corcino went 2-4 with his 19th double. Murphy went 2-4 with his 12th double. Nelson Molina went 1-3 with a walk. MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers 4, Jupiter 1 Box Score The Miracle came into their Saturday night game against Jupiter with a magic number of two. Charlotte lost to Bradenton 5-0, dropping the magic number to one. Could the Miracle clinch a playoff spot? The answer... Yes. Lefty Lachlan Wells returned to the mound for the Miracle and was very good. He went five shutout innings. He gave up two hits, walked two and struck out seven. Tyler Jay came on for the sixth inning and allowed a run to score to tie the game at one. He worked the seventh as well. In his two innings, he struck out five. Zander Wiel had given the Miracle a 1-0 lead with his 13th home run. When the Miracle lost their lead in the sixth, they grabbed it right back in the bottom of the inning. Mitchell Kranson hit a solo homer to give the lead back to the Miracle. Kranson led the way for the Miracle offense. He went 3-4 with two doubles (eight on the season) and his fourth home run. He drove in three runs. Tanner English went 2-3 with a walk and his 29th stolen base. Ariel Montesino drove in the other run and went 2-3 with a walk. Jermaine Palacios and Sean Miller each had two singles in four at-bats. Tom Hackimer recorded his seventh Kernels save with two scoreless innings. He walked one and struck out two. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 4, Beloit 2 Box Score The start of this game was delayed by more than 90 minutes, but the teams were able to get it in. 2017 eighth-round pick Bryan Sammons made the start. He gave up only an unearned run on three hits and a walk in five innings. He struck out six. Evan Sanders came on and gave up one run on two hits and two walks over his two innings. Patrick McGuff pitched two no-hit innings to close things out and earn his first save. He struck out two and walked one. The Kernels got three of their runs in the fourth inning, which got started with a Travis Blankenhorn triple. Aaron Whitefield drove him in with a single and advanced to third on a base hit by Lewis Diaz. Trey Cabbage drew a walk and Shane Carrier delivered a bases-loaded two-run single. Whitefield, Carrier and Jordan Gore each had two hits on the night. Gore also drew a walk. E-TWINS E-NOTES Elizabethton, Greeneville (Rain - Postponed) Box Score The E-Twins were supposed to start their playoff run on Saturday, but unfortunately rains pushed the start of their postseason back a day. The two teams will play Game 1 on Sunday. GCL TWINS TAKES GCL Twins Box Score The doubleheader was cancelled due to potential for rain in Ft. Myers. The team will begin its playoff hopes on Sunday. The will play the semi-finals game on Sunday morning against the Nationals. Should they win, they’ll advance to the finals on Monday. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day - Lachlan Wells, Ft. Myers Miracle Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Mitchell Kranson, Ft. Myers Miracle SUNDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Pawtucket @ Rochester (5:05 CST) - LHP Hector Santiago Montgomery @ Chattanooga (5:15 CST) - RHP Randy LeBlanc (vs Logan Darnell) Jupiter @ Ft. Myers (10:05 am CST) - TBD Cedar Rapids @ Beloit (2:00 CST) - RHP Randy Dobnak Elizabethton @ Greeneville (5:00 CST) - RHP Edwar Colina (Playoffs - Game 1) GCL Twins @ GCL Nationals (11:00am CST) - RHP Blayne Enlow (Playoffs - Semi-finals) Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss Saturday’s games.
  12. On the first Saturday of the college football season, the Minnesota Twins topped Kansas City with a football score, 17-0. In the minor leagues, playoff spots are to be had or prepared for, and there were strides toward those spots. There have been playoff-setting transactions, and some very good performances, so enjoy today’s Minor League Report.Let’s start with the recent transactions: Kohl Stewart was removed from the DL to pitch for the Lookouts.IF Joe Cronin, who was promoted from Cedar Rapids to Ft. Myers last week, was now promoted to Chattanooga.RHP Alex Muren was sent back to Ft. MyersIF Ariel Montesino was promoted from Elizabethton to Ft. Myers.C Jhon Alvarez was promoted from the GCL to Ft. Myers.The Twins signed IF Daniel Crespo and assigned him to the GCL. Needing players for their playoff run, the Twins have signed Crespo, who was the 34th round pick of the Yankees in 2013 out of Appalachian State. He just turned 26. He spent 2014 and 2015 in the independent Frontier League. I’m not sure where he was most recently.RED WINGS REPORTRochester 3, Pawtucket 5 Box Score Felix Jorge was on the mound. The right-hander gave up three runs on seven hits and two walks over the first 4.1 innings. Luke Bard had an interesting outing. He walked two and struck out four in 1.2 innings. Just one of seven batters even put the ball in play off of him. Michael Kohn gave up a home run in the seventh inning. Jake Reed then gave up one run on three hits in his inning. Yohan Pino gave up a hit in a scoreless ninth inning. Byungho Park went 2-4. Levi Michael hit his first AAA double and drove in two runs. Lehigh Valley was rained out on Saturday, so the Red Wings magic number to take the IL wild card spot sits at two with two games to play. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 4, Montgomery 3 Box Score The Lookouts already had a playoff spot. They earned that in the first half. Then they went out and had an even better second half. Kohl Stewart returned from the DL to make the start in this one. He gave up two runs in the first inning but settled in after that. He gave up just those two runs on four hits and three walks in three innings. DJ Baxendale came on and was able to work the next 4.2 innings without allowing any more runs. He gave up three hits, a walk and struck out three. Todd Van Steensel gave walked one but got the final out of the eighth inning. In that time, LaMonte Wade hit a two-run homer (his seventh) to tie the game at two. In the top of the ninth, the Lookouts took the lead when Wade doubled in Edgar Corcino (who had led off with a double). Later, Max Murphy singled in Wade with the fourth run. So Nick Anderson came into the game to protect a two-run lead. He gave up one run on two hits, but he recorded his ninth save for the Lookouts. Wade led the way going 3-4 with his 22nd double, seventh home run and third RBI. Corcino went 2-4 with his 19th double. Murphy went 2-4 with his 12th double. Nelson Molina went 1-3 with a walk. MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers 4, Jupiter 1 Box Score The Miracle came into their Saturday night game against Jupiter with a magic number of two. Charlotte lost to Bradenton 5-0, dropping the magic number to one. Could the Miracle clinch a playoff spot? The answer... Yes. Lefty Lachlan Wells returned to the mound for the Miracle and was very good. He went five shutout innings. He gave up two hits, walked two and struck out seven. Tyler Jay came on for the sixth inning and allowed a run to score to tie the game at one. He worked the seventh as well. In his two innings, he struck out five. Zander Wiel had given the Miracle a 1-0 lead with his 13th home run. When the Miracle lost their lead in the sixth, they grabbed it right back in the bottom of the inning. Mitchell Kranson hit a solo homer to give the lead back to the Miracle. Kranson led the way for the Miracle offense. He went 3-4 with two doubles (eight on the season) and his fourth home run. He drove in three runs. Tanner English went 2-3 with a walk and his 29th stolen base. Ariel Montesino drove in the other run and went 2-3 with a walk. Jermaine Palacios and Sean Miller each had two singles in four at-bats. Tom Hackimer recorded his seventh Kernels save with two scoreless innings. He walked one and struck out two. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 4, Beloit 2 Box Score The start of this game was delayed by more than 90 minutes, but the teams were able to get it in. 2017 eighth-round pick Bryan Sammons made the start. He gave up only an unearned run on three hits and a walk in five innings. He struck out six. Evan Sanders came on and gave up one run on two hits and two walks over his two innings. Patrick McGuff pitched two no-hit innings to close things out and earn his first save. He struck out two and walked one. The Kernels got three of their runs in the fourth inning, which got started with a Travis Blankenhorn triple. Aaron Whitefield drove him in with a single and advanced to third on a base hit by Lewis Diaz. Trey Cabbage drew a walk and Shane Carrier delivered a bases-loaded two-run single. Whitefield, Carrier and Jordan Gore each had two hits on the night. Gore also drew a walk. E-TWINS E-NOTES Elizabethton, Greeneville (Rain - Postponed) Box Score The E-Twins were supposed to start their playoff run on Saturday, but unfortunately rains pushed the start of their postseason back a day. The two teams will play Game 1 on Sunday. GCL TWINS TAKES GCL Twins Box Score The doubleheader was cancelled due to potential for rain in Ft. Myers. The team will begin its playoff hopes on Sunday. The will play the semi-finals game on Sunday morning against the Nationals. Should they win, they’ll advance to the finals on Monday. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day - Lachlan Wells, Ft. Myers Miracle Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Mitchell Kranson, Ft. Myers Miracle SUNDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Pawtucket @ Rochester (5:05 CST) - LHP Hector Santiago Montgomery @ Chattanooga (5:15 CST) - RHP Randy LeBlanc (vs Logan Darnell) Jupiter @ Ft. Myers (10:05 am CST) - TBD Cedar Rapids @ Beloit (2:00 CST) - RHP Randy Dobnak Elizabethton @ Greeneville (5:00 CST) - RHP Edwar Colina (Playoffs - Game 1) GCL Twins @ GCL Nationals (11:00am CST) - RHP Blayne Enlow (Playoffs - Semi-finals) Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss Saturday’s games. Click here to view the article
  13. RED WINGS REPORT Rochester - OFF DAY At 69-52, the Red Wings are all square with Lehigh Valley in the International League Wild Card race, though the two teams will not face each other over the final 21 games on the season. The Red Wings will face the best team in the league, Scranton/WB, eight times though, so their path to the playoffs is not going to be a cakewalk. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 9, Birmingham 0 Box Score All nine batters in the lineup contributed at least one hit. Seven of the nine scored runs and six of the nine drove in runs. But Nick Gordon was clearly the star of the game and had, arguably, the best offensive showing of any Twins farmhand this season. In six at-bats, Gordon collected three singles, a double and a triple for five hits. He scored three runs and drove in two. His batting average climbed eight points to .288. Brian Navarreto was 3-5. LaMonte Wade, Andy Wilkins, Ryan Walker and Edgar Corcino all had two hits. One of Corcino’s was a triple. Jonathan Rodriguez hit his 16th home run. He had three RBI. The bullpen - in a bullpen game - pitched a shutout. D.J. Baxendale pitched the first three frames, followed by Glen Perkins. Perkins threw 21 pitches (11 strikes) on his way to a hitless, one-walk, two-strikeout performance. Yohan Pino earned the win with three innings of two-hit ball. He struck out four. Nick Anderson and Gabriel Moya each pitched a scoreless frame. The Lookouts are 35-15 in the second half and 77-43 overall. They will have a charging Montgomery team to fend off. MIRACLE MATTERS Fort Myers 6, Lakeland 5 Box Score Mitchell Kranson was the Miracle Hero on Monday night. Summoned to hit for Tanner English with the bases load and one out in the bottom of the ninth, Kranson promptly drove in the tying and winning runs, giving the Miracle a walk-off victory. https://twitter.com/MiracleBaseball/status/897484082212470784 Until that point, the Miracle had scattered hits, but failed to do a lot of damage. Sean Miller, Zander Wiel and Brian Olson all had two hits. Brandon Lopez had a triple and drove in two runs. Brent Rooker went hitless, but walked three times and struck out in his only official at-bat. Lewis Thorpe pitched six innings and did OK. He gave up two runs on five hits and four walks. He struck out three and was in line for the win. Andrew Vasquez blew his save chance, allowing three runs on five hits and a walk in two innings. Alex Robinson worked a scoreless frame and was the pitcher of record when Kranson provided his heroics, earning the win. At 23-18, the Miracle are on a six-game winning streak and have pushed their lead to five games in the FSL South. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 1, Burlington 2 Box Score Royce Lewis continued to hit the ball really well in full-season ball, collecting two more hits (but seeing his average fall to .538) and driving in a run, but it wasn’t enough. He also committed his first error as a Kernel. Caleb Hamilton and Shane Carrier provided the only other hits. Aaron Whitefield stole his 28th base of the season. Tyler Beardsley pitched five innings, allowing two runs on four hits and three walks. He struck out five. Logan Lombana also struck out five, in three scoreless innings. The Kernels are 23-27 in the second half, but have already clinched a playoff spot by way of finishing as division runners-up in the first half. They are slated to face Kane County in a three-game set. Kane County will have home-field advantage. E-TWINS E-NOTES Elizabethton 8, Johnson City 5 Box Score In a game delayed by over two and a half hours, the E-Twins were able to take an early lead and hang on. Wander Javier paced the offense with three hits. T.J. Dixon, Carson Crites and Matt Albanese all had two-hit games. Albanese’s seventh inning home run was their lone extra-base hit of the game. Nick Brown and Jared Finkel piggybacked Monday’s game. Brown took the first 4.1 innings, allowing four runs on eight hits and a walk. He struck out five. Finkel picked up the win, tossing 4.2 one-run (unearned) innings allowing only two hits while striking out four. The E-Twins are 31-21 with a 2.5 game lead over Johnson City. GCL TWINS TAKES GCL Twins 2, GCL Ray 10 Box Score Chris Heston, who has made 41 big-league appearances and threw a no-hitter against the Mets two years ago, got roughed up by a bunch of 18-year-olds. In five innings, he gave up three runs on seven hits. He struck out five. Michael Kohn, who’s also rehabbing his way back, pitched a scoreless frame. Petru Balan put on four batters and three came around to score. He recorded only one out. David Geric also gave up three runs. He got through a whole inning, but walked four. Taylor Clemensia walked three, threw three wild pitches and recorded five outs. Jean Carlos Arias drove in Emmanuel Morel, who doubled to start the game, and then scored himself, but that was it for runs. Jared Akins had the only other two hits of the game. The GCL Twins, in the midst of a cold spell, are 24-19. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Pitcher of the Day – Jared Finkel, Elizabethton Hitter of the Day – Nick Gordon, Chattanooga TUESDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Rochester at Columbus (6:05 CST) - TBA Fort Myers vs Lakeland (6:05 CST) - TBA Cedar Rapids at Burlington (6:30 CST) - LHP Bryan Sammons (1-0, 3.38 ERA) Elizabethton at Johnson City (10:30 AM CST) - RHP Edwar Colina (3-3, 2.54 ERA) GCL Twins at GCL Rays (11:00 AM CST) - TBA Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss Monday’s games.
  14. Monday was an off day for the Twins as they return home to begin a six-game homestand on Tuesday. Sports writers sometimes use the “most important week of the season” hyperbole when talking about a week such as the one upcoming, but in this instance - despite these games not counting for anything extra - it might actually be true. At least until next week’s road trip. And the following week’s three-game set before the August waiver trade deadline. You see, it will be sometime during this timespan that the front office will have to decide the “pretender vs contender” debate. But until we know exactly, we will enjoy the ride. And when that ride takes a day off - like it did on Monday - we’ll enjoy the next best thing: The Twins minor league system. On Monday, Eddie Rosario was named American League Player of the Week. Rosario batted .444 with 12 hits, nine RBI, three double and four home runs. Brent Rooker (.364/.417/.818) was also named Florida State Hitter of the Week. He hit three three-run home runs. Not a bad week for those two outfielders. Read about Monday’s action below.RED WINGS REPORT Rochester - OFF DAY At 69-52, the Red Wings are all square with Lehigh Valley in the International League Wild Card race, though the two teams will not face each other over the final 21 games on the season. The Red Wings will face the best team in the league, Scranton/WB, eight times though, so their path to the playoffs is not going to be a cakewalk. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 9, Birmingham 0 Box Score All nine batters in the lineup contributed at least one hit. Seven of the nine scored runs and six of the nine drove in runs. But Nick Gordon was clearly the star of the game and had, arguably, the best offensive showing of any Twins farmhand this season. In six at-bats, Gordon collected three singles, a double and a triple for five hits. He scored three runs and drove in two. His batting average climbed eight points to .288. Brian Navarreto was 3-5. LaMonte Wade, Andy Wilkins, Ryan Walker and Edgar Corcino all had two hits. One of Corcino’s was a triple. Jonathan Rodriguez hit his 16th home run. He had three RBI. The bullpen - in a bullpen game - pitched a shutout. D.J. Baxendale pitched the first three frames, followed by Glen Perkins. Perkins threw 21 pitches (11 strikes) on his way to a hitless, one-walk, two-strikeout performance. Yohan Pino earned the win with three innings of two-hit ball. He struck out four. Nick Anderson and Gabriel Moya each pitched a scoreless frame. The Lookouts are 35-15 in the second half and 77-43 overall. They will have a charging Montgomery team to fend off. MIRACLE MATTERS Fort Myers 6, Lakeland 5 Box Score Mitchell Kranson was the Miracle Hero on Monday night. Summoned to hit for Tanner English with the bases load and one out in the bottom of the ninth, Kranson promptly drove in the tying and winning runs, giving the Miracle a walk-off victory. Until that point, the Miracle had scattered hits, but failed to do a lot of damage. Sean Miller, Zander Wiel and Brian Olson all had two hits. Brandon Lopez had a triple and drove in two runs. Brent Rooker went hitless, but walked three times and struck out in his only official at-bat. Lewis Thorpe pitched six innings and did OK. He gave up two runs on five hits and four walks. He struck out three and was in line for the win. Andrew Vasquez blew his save chance, allowing three runs on five hits and a walk in two innings. Alex Robinson worked a scoreless frame and was the pitcher of record when Kranson provided his heroics, earning the win. At 23-18, the Miracle are on a six-game winning streak and have pushed their lead to five games in the FSL South. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 1, Burlington 2 Box Score Royce Lewis continued to hit the ball really well in full-season ball, collecting two more hits (but seeing his average fall to .538) and driving in a run, but it wasn’t enough. He also committed his first error as a Kernel. Caleb Hamilton and Shane Carrier provided the only other hits. Aaron Whitefield stole his 28th base of the season. Tyler Beardsley pitched five innings, allowing two runs on four hits and three walks. He struck out five. Logan Lombana also struck out five, in three scoreless innings. The Kernels are 23-27 in the second half, but have already clinched a playoff spot by way of finishing as division runners-up in the first half. They are slated to face Kane County in a three-game set. Kane County will have home-field advantage. E-TWINS E-NOTES Elizabethton 8, Johnson City 5 Box Score In a game delayed by over two and a half hours, the E-Twins were able to take an early lead and hang on. Wander Javier paced the offense with three hits. T.J. Dixon, Carson Crites and Matt Albanese all had two-hit games. Albanese’s seventh inning home run was their lone extra-base hit of the game. Nick Brown and Jared Finkel piggybacked Monday’s game. Brown took the first 4.1 innings, allowing four runs on eight hits and a walk. He struck out five. Finkel picked up the win, tossing 4.2 one-run (unearned) innings allowing only two hits while striking out four. The E-Twins are 31-21 with a 2.5 game lead over Johnson City. GCL TWINS TAKES GCL Twins 2, GCL Ray 10 Box Score Chris Heston, who has made 41 big-league appearances and threw a no-hitter against the Mets two years ago, got roughed up by a bunch of 18-year-olds. In five innings, he gave up three runs on seven hits. He struck out five. Michael Kohn, who’s also rehabbing his way back, pitched a scoreless frame. Petru Balan put on four batters and three came around to score. He recorded only one out. David Geric also gave up three runs. He got through a whole inning, but walked four. Taylor Clemensia walked three, threw three wild pitches and recorded five outs. Jean Carlos Arias drove in Emmanuel Morel, who doubled to start the game, and then scored himself, but that was it for runs. Jared Akins had the only other two hits of the game. The GCL Twins, in the midst of a cold spell, are 24-19. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Pitcher of the Day – Jared Finkel, Elizabethton Hitter of the Day – Nick Gordon, Chattanooga TUESDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Rochester at Columbus (6:05 CST) - TBA Fort Myers vs Lakeland (6:05 CST) - TBA Cedar Rapids at Burlington (6:30 CST) - LHP Bryan Sammons (1-0, 3.38 ERA) Elizabethton at Johnson City (10:30 AM CST) - RHP Edwar Colina (3-3, 2.54 ERA) GCL Twins at GCL Rays (11:00 AM CST) - TBA Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss Monday’s games. Click here to view the article
  15. On Tuesday afternoon, news came out that Brent Rooker had been promoted from Elizabethton to Ft. Myers. It was a strategy the Twins had mentioned after selecting the four-year college start from Mississippi State with the 35th overall pick (supplemental 1st round). He played in 22 games for Elizabethton and posted a.952 OPS with seven homers. John Bonnes tweeted the following: I hear stuff like that a lot. Many believe that the Twins aren’t aggressive enough with prospects. But for a 2017 draft pick, even a college hitter, I think that jumping to High-A ball is pretty aggressive. But honestly, I was just really curious. I needed to know.So, I went to Baseball-Reference (I know, obviously) and researched which college hitters were drafted ahead of Brent Rooker in the 2017 draft. I was curious to see where other teams had started those players and where they are now, if different. Secondly, because Rooker is a four-year college guy (the Twins actually drafted him in 2016 in the 38th round), I thought it would make sense to look at the college hitters drafted in the first round in 2016 as well. For them, I was curious where they got to by the end of 2016 as well as where they are right now, midway through the 2017 season. I’m willing to admit when I’m wrong, but I did have a couple of assumptions in my mind before doing the research. I assumed that none of the other college hitters drafted in 2017 have reached High-A yet. I did expect that a couple of the very high draft picks would be at Low A by now.I assumed that most of the college hitters drafted in 2016’s first round were at least at High-A, unless there was an injury at play or something.The College Hitters Drafted in 2017 ahead of Brent Rooker (4) Brendan McKay - Tampa Bay Rays - There were rumors that the Twins were interested in the two-way player from Louisville. To this point, McKay has played in just two games in the New York-Penn League (NYPL) which is a short-season A league. The Twins don’t have a short-season A club, but the level is between Advanced Rookie Leagues like the Appalachian League and Low-A Leagues like the Midwest League. McKay is 0-8 with 4 strikeouts, but I think that would be considered Small Sample Size. (7) Pavin Smith - Virginia - Arizona Diamondbacks - Smith has played in 20 games for the DBacks affiliate in the Northwest League. Like the NYPL, the Northwest League is a short-season A league. (8) Adam Haseley - Virginia - Philadelphia Phillies - Smith’s teammate began his pro career with three games in the GCL before moving up to the NYPL where he’s played in 14 games. (9) Keston Hiura - Milwaukee Brewers - Hiura, who was drafted out of UC-Irvine, has played in 15 games for the Brewers affiliate in the Arizona League which is similar to the Gulf Coast League (the lower short-season league), though he is hitting .435 (1.339 OPS). (11) Jake Burger - Chicago White Sox - Burger was drafted out of Missouri State. He played in four games in the Arizona League before moving up to the White Sox Low A affiliate in the South Atlantic League (Low A). (17) Evan White - Seattle Mariners - The first baseman was drafted out of Kentucky. The Mariners have had him play 14 games so far in the Northwest League (short-season A). (22) Logan Warmoth - Toronto Blue Jays - The middle infielder selected out of North Carolina began his career with five games in the GCL. He moved up to the Northwest League (short-season). (23) Jaren Kendall - Los Angeles Dodgers - The Wisconsin kid was drafted out of Vanderbilt. He signed on the final signing day, so he is yet to play in a game. (33) Kevin Merrell - Oakland A’s - Drafted out of South Florida, the A’s placed Merrell in the NYPL to start his career. SUMMARY Of nine college hitters drafted before Brent Rooker at the 35th pick, here is the quick breakdown of where they are playing right now: Low Rookie - 1 Advanced Rookie - 3 Short-season A - 3 Low A - 1 Rooker played 22 games for Elizabethton (Advanced Rookie) before playing in his first Ft. Myers Miracle (High-A) game on Tuesday night. While he is the first to play in High-A from this group, it doesn’t mean he’ll be the last. In fact, it’s likely he won’t be. He shouldn’t be as the 35th overall pick, not when there are five college hitters who were taken in the first 11 picks. And, of course, on an even bigger level, we won’t really know the value of any of these picks for another half-dozen years, at least. The College Hitters Drafted In 2016s First Round (2) Nick Senzel - Cincinnati Reds - The second overall pick in the draft out of Tennessee, Senzel reached the Midwest League last season. He began this year in the Florida State League, but he was promoted to AA where he has now played 23 games. (5) Corey Ray - Milwaukee Brewers - Drafted out of Louisville, Ray started his career with three games in Low A before being pushed to High A where he played 57 games to end the season. That is where he remains to this point in the 2017 season as well. The only difference is that the Brewers High-A affiliate is now in the Carolina League. (10) Zack Collins - Chicago White Sox - Collins was playing in the Florida State League shortly after playing in the College World Series. That is where he remains to this point in the 2017 season. (11) Kyle Lewis - Seattle Mariners - Lewis was believed by some to be a possibility as the #1 overall pick. He fell to #11 and played some in the short-season A ball league. He had a major knee injury and has just recently began to play in 2017, playing two games in High A. (16) Matt Thaiss - Los Angeles Angels - The first baseman from Virginia began his career last year in rookie ball before playing 52 games in Low A. He began 2017 in High A before being promoted to AA about a couple of weeks ago (22) Will Craig - Pittsburgh Pirates - The third baseman from Wake Forest spent his entire 2016 pro season in the NYPL. This season, he jumped straight to High-A, where he remains. (32) Will Smith - Los Angeles Dodgers - The catcher from Louisville spent about two weeks in rookie ball, 23 games in Low A and 25 games in High A in 2016. He began 2017 in High A with 72 more games in High A. He was promoted to AA about a week ago. He played one game before landing on the DL. (39) Anfernee Grier - Arizona Diamondbacks - After signing last year out of Auburn, Grier split his 2016 between two levels of the rookie leagues. He has spent the 2017 season in Low A ball. 2016 SUMMARY There were eight college hitters selected in the first round of the 2016 draft. Here is where they ended their 2016 season (First pro season): Short-season A - 2 Low A - 3 High A - 3 Here is where those eight players are right now: Low A - 1 High A - 4 AA - 3 (the three players have a combined 33 games in AA) OVERALL SUMMARY Brent Rooker was the Triple Crown winner in the SEC this year at Mississippi State. He is the first to do that since Rafael Palmiero. In other words, he should be considered an advanced hitting prospect. Hence, he was selected with the 35th overall pick a year after the Twins made him the 38th round pick. I understand that Rooker is 22, and he will turn 23 in November. While many want to push him to the big leagues in 2018 or early in 2019, I’m not even a little bit concerned about that. I want him to come up when he is ready to come up and contribute, whether that is in June of 2018 or July of 2020. The reality is that the Twins can get 6+ seasons out of a player before free agency hits. I don’t care whether those are their age 21 through 28 seasons or 25 through 32 seasons. Brian Dozier was a four-year guy. He debuted within two years of being drafted. Mitch Garver was a four-year guy. As a catcher, he’s taken a little longer to develop behind the plate. So, he’s 26, but when he comes up (hopefully soon), he will be ready to go. Trevor Hildenberger was a five-year college guy. His first pro season was spent only in the GCL. Does that matter now? We need to get rid of the stigma placed upon these guys that they are older than their level, even if it is factual. It just isn’t all that important. At the same time, I do think it is important to do a little research like this. I didn’t know what it would tell me. However, when honestly comparing where Rooker is relative to his draft class (2017) or his age class (2016 college draft picks as juniors), the Twins are certainly pushing him with this promotion to Ft. Myers. ---------------------------------------------------- BONUS CONTENT Looking at this, I was curious where some of the other college hitters that the Twins drafted and signed in recent years are now. Here’s a very quick look. 2016: (7) Matt Albanese - Bryant College (RI) - Elizabethton (debuting this season due to wrist injuries) (9) Mitchell Kranson - California - Ft. Myers (10) Brandon Lopez - Miami - Ft. Myers (14) Andre Jernigan - Xavier - Cedar Rapids (22) Hank Morrison - Mercyhurst (PA) - Cedar Rapids (23) Caleb Hamilton - Oregon State - Cedar Rapids (29) Dane Hutcheon - Montevallo (AL) - Elizabethton (down from Ft. Myers for Rooker) (31) Juan Gamez - NDSU - Elizabethton (drafted as catcher, transitioned to pitching) (34) Joe Cronin - Boston College - Cedar Rapids (39) Casey Scoggins - Tampa - Release (after spending time in Ft. Myers early this year) From 2015, Chris Paul (6), Sean Miller (10), Zander Wiel (12), and Jaylin Davis (24) are with the Miracle. LaMonte Wade (9) and Alex Perez (23) are with the Lookouts. Five other college hitter picks have been released. I show this only to show how difficult the path is to the big leagues, even for college hitters. Even for college hitters from big-time colleges in big-time conferences. Baseball is Good, but Baseball is Hard! Click here to view the article
  16. So, I went to Baseball-Reference (I know, obviously) and researched which college hitters were drafted ahead of Brent Rooker in the 2017 draft. I was curious to see where other teams had started those players and where they are now, if different. Secondly, because Rooker is a four-year college guy (the Twins actually drafted him in 2016 in the 38th round), I thought it would make sense to look at the college hitters drafted in the first round in 2016 as well. For them, I was curious where they got to by the end of 2016 as well as where they are right now, midway through the 2017 season. I’m willing to admit when I’m wrong, but I did have a couple of assumptions in my mind before doing the research. I assumed that none of the other college hitters drafted in 2017 have reached High-A yet. I did expect that a couple of the very high draft picks would be at Low A by now. I assumed that most of the college hitters drafted in 2016’s first round were at least at High-A, unless there was an injury at play or something. The College Hitters Drafted in 2017 ahead of Brent Rooker (4) Brendan McKay - Tampa Bay Rays - There were rumors that the Twins were interested in the two-way player from Louisville. To this point, McKay has played in just two games in the New York-Penn League (NYPL) which is a short-season A league. The Twins don’t have a short-season A club, but the level is between Advanced Rookie Leagues like the Appalachian League and Low-A Leagues like the Midwest League. McKay is 0-8 with 4 strikeouts, but I think that would be considered Small Sample Size. (7) Pavin Smith - Virginia - Arizona Diamondbacks - Smith has played in 20 games for the DBacks affiliate in the Northwest League. Like the NYPL, the Northwest League is a short-season A league. (8) Adam Haseley - Virginia - Philadelphia Phillies - Smith’s teammate began his pro career with three games in the GCL before moving up to the NYPL where he’s played in 14 games. (9) Keston Hiura - Milwaukee Brewers - Hiura, who was drafted out of UC-Irvine, has played in 15 games for the Brewers affiliate in the Arizona League which is similar to the Gulf Coast League (the lower short-season league), though he is hitting .435 (1.339 OPS). (11) Jake Burger - Chicago White Sox - Burger was drafted out of Missouri State. He played in four games in the Arizona League before moving up to the White Sox Low A affiliate in the South Atlantic League (Low A). (17) Evan White - Seattle Mariners - The first baseman was drafted out of Kentucky. The Mariners have had him play 14 games so far in the Northwest League (short-season A). (22) Logan Warmoth - Toronto Blue Jays - The middle infielder selected out of North Carolina began his career with five games in the GCL. He moved up to the Northwest League (short-season). (23) Jaren Kendall - Los Angeles Dodgers - The Wisconsin kid was drafted out of Vanderbilt. He signed on the final signing day, so he is yet to play in a game. (33) Kevin Merrell - Oakland A’s - Drafted out of South Florida, the A’s placed Merrell in the NYPL to start his career. SUMMARY Of nine college hitters drafted before Brent Rooker at the 35th pick, here is the quick breakdown of where they are playing right now: Low Rookie - 1 Advanced Rookie - 3 Short-season A - 3 Low A - 1 Rooker played 22 games for Elizabethton (Advanced Rookie) before playing in his first Ft. Myers Miracle (High-A) game on Tuesday night. While he is the first to play in High-A from this group, it doesn’t mean he’ll be the last. In fact, it’s likely he won’t be. He shouldn’t be as the 35th overall pick, not when there are five college hitters who were taken in the first 11 picks. And, of course, on an even bigger level, we won’t really know the value of any of these picks for another half-dozen years, at least. The College Hitters Drafted In 2016s First Round (2) Nick Senzel - Cincinnati Reds - The second overall pick in the draft out of Tennessee, Senzel reached the Midwest League last season. He began this year in the Florida State League, but he was promoted to AA where he has now played 23 games. (5) Corey Ray - Milwaukee Brewers - Drafted out of Louisville, Ray started his career with three games in Low A before being pushed to High A where he played 57 games to end the season. That is where he remains to this point in the 2017 season as well. The only difference is that the Brewers High-A affiliate is now in the Carolina League. (10) Zack Collins - Chicago White Sox - Collins was playing in the Florida State League shortly after playing in the College World Series. That is where he remains to this point in the 2017 season. (11) Kyle Lewis - Seattle Mariners - Lewis was believed by some to be a possibility as the #1 overall pick. He fell to #11 and played some in the short-season A ball league. He had a major knee injury and has just recently began to play in 2017, playing two games in High A. (16) Matt Thaiss - Los Angeles Angels - The first baseman from Virginia began his career last year in rookie ball before playing 52 games in Low A. He began 2017 in High A before being promoted to AA about a couple of weeks ago (22) Will Craig - Pittsburgh Pirates - The third baseman from Wake Forest spent his entire 2016 pro season in the NYPL. This season, he jumped straight to High-A, where he remains. (32) Will Smith - Los Angeles Dodgers - The catcher from Louisville spent about two weeks in rookie ball, 23 games in Low A and 25 games in High A in 2016. He began 2017 in High A with 72 more games in High A. He was promoted to AA about a week ago. He played one game before landing on the DL. (39) Anfernee Grier - Arizona Diamondbacks - After signing last year out of Auburn, Grier split his 2016 between two levels of the rookie leagues. He has spent the 2017 season in Low A ball. 2016 SUMMARY There were eight college hitters selected in the first round of the 2016 draft. Here is where they ended their 2016 season (First pro season): Short-season A - 2 Low A - 3 High A - 3 Here is where those eight players are right now: Low A - 1 High A - 4 AA - 3 (the three players have a combined 33 games in AA) OVERALL SUMMARY Brent Rooker was the Triple Crown winner in the SEC this year at Mississippi State. He is the first to do that since Rafael Palmiero. In other words, he should be considered an advanced hitting prospect. Hence, he was selected with the 35th overall pick a year after the Twins made him the 38th round pick. I understand that Rooker is 22, and he will turn 23 in November. While many want to push him to the big leagues in 2018 or early in 2019, I’m not even a little bit concerned about that. I want him to come up when he is ready to come up and contribute, whether that is in June of 2018 or July of 2020. The reality is that the Twins can get 6+ seasons out of a player before free agency hits. I don’t care whether those are their age 21 through 28 seasons or 25 through 32 seasons. Brian Dozier was a four-year guy. He debuted within two years of being drafted. Mitch Garver was a four-year guy. As a catcher, he’s taken a little longer to develop behind the plate. So, he’s 26, but when he comes up (hopefully soon), he will be ready to go. Trevor Hildenberger was a five-year college guy. His first pro season was spent only in the GCL. Does that matter now? We need to get rid of the stigma placed upon these guys that they are older than their level, even if it is factual. It just isn’t all that important. At the same time, I do think it is important to do a little research like this. I didn’t know what it would tell me. However, when honestly comparing where Rooker is relative to his draft class (2017) or his age class (2016 college draft picks as juniors), the Twins are certainly pushing him with this promotion to Ft. Myers. ---------------------------------------------------- BONUS CONTENT Looking at this, I was curious where some of the other college hitters that the Twins drafted and signed in recent years are now. Here’s a very quick look. 2016: (7) Matt Albanese - Bryant College (RI) - Elizabethton (debuting this season due to wrist injuries) (9) Mitchell Kranson - California - Ft. Myers (10) Brandon Lopez - Miami - Ft. Myers (14) Andre Jernigan - Xavier - Cedar Rapids (22) Hank Morrison - Mercyhurst (PA) - Cedar Rapids (23) Caleb Hamilton - Oregon State - Cedar Rapids (29) Dane Hutcheon - Montevallo (AL) - Elizabethton (down from Ft. Myers for Rooker) (31) Juan Gamez - NDSU - Elizabethton (drafted as catcher, transitioned to pitching) (34) Joe Cronin - Boston College - Cedar Rapids (39) Casey Scoggins - Tampa - Release (after spending time in Ft. Myers early this year) From 2015, Chris Paul (6), Sean Miller (10), Zander Wiel (12), and Jaylin Davis (24) are with the Miracle. LaMonte Wade (9) and Alex Perez (23) are with the Lookouts. Five other college hitter picks have been released. I show this only to show how difficult the path is to the big leagues, even for college hitters. Even for college hitters from big-time colleges in big-time conferences. Baseball is Good, but Baseball is Hard!
  17. Though only two of the Minnesota Twins affiliates were in action on Tuesday, there was plenty of excitement in the minor leagues as two of their leagues' All-Star Games were scheduled. Too bad for you and me only one of them was played due to some pesky weather. In the one that was played however, a Twins player had a big hit to put his team in the lead. In the two regular-season games that were played, one pitcher made his AAA debut while another made his first start since being drafted. Read on to find out how all of your favorite prospects who did play fared on Tuesday night!RED WINGS REPORT Buffalo 3, Rochester 4 Box Score The Red Wings scored early and held off the Bisons to win their fourth game in a row and move above .500 at 34-33 on the season. In the bottom of the first inning, RBI doubles from Mitch Garver and Byungho Park were followed by a sacrifice fly from John Ryan Murphy to jump out front 3-0. Starter Aaron Slegers kept Rochester out front through five innings before he ran into enough trouble to chase him after recording the first two outs of the sixth. In his 5.2 innings, he allowed three runs on six hits and three walks, while striking out six. With runners on first and second, Jake Reed was summoned from the bullpen for the first time at AAA, and struck out the final hitter of the sixth to keep Slegers in line for win. The offense had added the needed insurance run for their starter thanks to the speed of shortstop Engelb Vielma in the fourth inning. He reached base on a bunt single, stole second base and advanced to third on the errant throw before trotting home on a Matt Hague single. It was Vielma’s first stolen base at AAA. Reed also pitched the seventh inning, allowing a single but picking off the runner before also notching his second strikeout in a scoreless Red Wings debut. Ryan Pressly picked up the two inning save, his third with the Red Wings with two scoreless innings to finish the game. He walked one and struck out two. J.B. Shuck (2-5, R), Park (2-4, R, 2 2B’s, RBI, BB), and Niko Goodrum (2-4) each had multiple hits to pace the offense. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Southern League All-Star Break North All-Stars @ South All-Stars Unfortunately for the Southern League and host Pensacola, the All-Star Game scheduled for Tuesday was cancelled on account of Tropical Storm Cindy pounding the region with rain. As a consolation prize, I recommend you read about the “toxic” road that was taken by the Blue Wahoos franchise to reach the point of hosting the game. The Lookouts were represented on the North Division squad by pitchers Fernando Romero, Mason Melotakis (though he was promoted to Rochester this week), and John Curtiss; and position players Nick Gordon, Edgar Corcino, and LaMonte Wade. Chattanooga kicks off the second-half of the season at home on Thursday against the Blue Wahoos. MIRACLE MATTERS Fort Myers 0, Jupiter 2 Box Score Left-hander Anthony McIver made his first professional start on Tuesday night after his first 64 career appearances came as a reliever. You could say it went well, so maybe it will stick for a bit longer? He went the first 3.2 innings, allowing no runs on just one hit while striking out four. The lone hit allowed came in the fourth inning and he was removed immediately as he had likely reached his pitch limit, at 60. Tom Hackimer came on for the final out and then went two more scoreless innings. He gave up one hit and one walk, and struck out one in his 2.1 innings. Unfortunately for those two pitchers, the Miracle offense was nowhere to be found in this one, as the first eleven hitters of the game were retired by HammerHead starter Scott Squier. As a team they struck out four times and managed just three hits and one walk against him in his 6.2 innings of shutout baseball. Fort Myers did threaten in the eighth inning as they had runners on second and third with one out, but strikeouts of Max Murphy and Zander Wiel closed the door on the opportunity. David Fischer was tagged with the loss as he gave up single runs in both of the seventh and eighth innings in finishing the game for the Miracle. Those runs scored on four hits and a walk in his two innings. Fort Myers finished the game 0-2 with runners in scoring position and left only six men on base as a team. They look to pick up their first second-half win of the season on Wednesday after dropping the first two games of their three game series versus Jupiter. KERNELS NUGGETS Midwest League All-Star Break West All-Stars 5, East All-Stars 2 Box Score The Midwest League All-Star Game in Midland, Michigan (home of the Great Lakes Loons, affiliate of the Los Angeles Dodgers) was able to be played on Tuesday night and all six of the Kernels representatives played, with their four position players also starting the game. Jermaine Palacios was the shortstop, batted second in the Western division lineup, and was 1-2 with a single before being lifted in the mass substitutions in the fifth inning. Lewin Diaz batted clean-up and manned first base, and put his squad out front 2-1 in the fourth inning with a two-run home run. If not for a two-home run game from one of his all-star team mates, he might have been player of the game (he’ll have to settle for the Twins “Daily” MiLB Award) Travis Blankenhorn was at third base and batted sixth in the lineup. He flew out in both his plate appearances. Mitchell Kranson started the game as the designated hitter, but also finished the game at first base. He doubled in the fifth inning and was 1-4 on the game. Pitchers Sean Poppen and Clark Beeker both gave scoreless appearances. Poppen struck out one in a one-two-three second inning, and Beeker gave up a double in the sixth and was replaced with two outs. The Cedar Rapids Kernels get back to action on Thursday on the road against the Quad Cities River Bandits, whom the Kernels edged out for the second Western Division playoff-spot in the first half. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Pitcher of the Day – Anthony McIver, Fort Myers Miracle (3.2 IP, 2 H’s, 4 K’s) Hitter of the Day – Lewin Diaz, Cedar Rapids Kernels (1-2, HR, 2 RBI in MWL All-Star Game) WEDNESDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Buffalo @ Rochester (12:35PM CST) – LHP Hector Santiago (first rehab start) Chattanooga – No game. Southern League All-Star break. Fort Myers @ Jupiter (5:30PM CST) – RHP Cody Stashak (2-3, 4.02 ERA) Cedar Rapids – No game. Midwest League All-Star break. Please feel free to ask questions and discuss Tuesday’s games! Click here to view the article
  18. RED WINGS REPORT Buffalo 3, Rochester 4 Box Score The Red Wings scored early and held off the Bisons to win their fourth game in a row and move above .500 at 34-33 on the season. In the bottom of the first inning, RBI doubles from Mitch Garver and Byungho Park were followed by a sacrifice fly from John Ryan Murphy to jump out front 3-0. Starter Aaron Slegers kept Rochester out front through five innings before he ran into enough trouble to chase him after recording the first two outs of the sixth. In his 5.2 innings, he allowed three runs on six hits and three walks, while striking out six. With runners on first and second, Jake Reed was summoned from the bullpen for the first time at AAA, and struck out the final hitter of the sixth to keep Slegers in line for win. The offense had added the needed insurance run for their starter thanks to the speed of shortstop Engelb Vielma in the fourth inning. He reached base on a bunt single, stole second base and advanced to third on the errant throw before trotting home on a Matt Hague single. It was Vielma’s first stolen base at AAA. Reed also pitched the seventh inning, allowing a single but picking off the runner before also notching his second strikeout in a scoreless Red Wings debut. Ryan Pressly picked up the two inning save, his third with the Red Wings with two scoreless innings to finish the game. He walked one and struck out two. J.B. Shuck (2-5, R), Park (2-4, R, 2 2B’s, RBI, BB), and Niko Goodrum (2-4) each had multiple hits to pace the offense. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Southern League All-Star Break North All-Stars @ South All-Stars Unfortunately for the Southern League and host Pensacola, the All-Star Game scheduled for Tuesday was cancelled on account of Tropical Storm Cindy pounding the region with rain. As a consolation prize, I recommend you read about the “toxic” road that was taken by the Blue Wahoos franchise to reach the point of hosting the game. The Lookouts were represented on the North Division squad by pitchers Fernando Romero, Mason Melotakis (though he was promoted to Rochester this week), and John Curtiss; and position players Nick Gordon, Edgar Corcino, and LaMonte Wade. Chattanooga kicks off the second-half of the season at home on Thursday against the Blue Wahoos. MIRACLE MATTERS Fort Myers 0, Jupiter 2 Box Score Left-hander Anthony McIver made his first professional start on Tuesday night after his first 64 career appearances came as a reliever. You could say it went well, so maybe it will stick for a bit longer? He went the first 3.2 innings, allowing no runs on just one hit while striking out four. The lone hit allowed came in the fourth inning and he was removed immediately as he had likely reached his pitch limit, at 60. Tom Hackimer came on for the final out and then went two more scoreless innings. He gave up one hit and one walk, and struck out one in his 2.1 innings. Unfortunately for those two pitchers, the Miracle offense was nowhere to be found in this one, as the first eleven hitters of the game were retired by HammerHead starter Scott Squier. As a team they struck out four times and managed just three hits and one walk against him in his 6.2 innings of shutout baseball. Fort Myers did threaten in the eighth inning as they had runners on second and third with one out, but strikeouts of Max Murphy and Zander Wiel closed the door on the opportunity. David Fischer was tagged with the loss as he gave up single runs in both of the seventh and eighth innings in finishing the game for the Miracle. Those runs scored on four hits and a walk in his two innings. Fort Myers finished the game 0-2 with runners in scoring position and left only six men on base as a team. They look to pick up their first second-half win of the season on Wednesday after dropping the first two games of their three game series versus Jupiter. KERNELS NUGGETS Midwest League All-Star Break West All-Stars 5, East All-Stars 2 Box Score The Midwest League All-Star Game in Midland, Michigan (home of the Great Lakes Loons, affiliate of the Los Angeles Dodgers) was able to be played on Tuesday night and all six of the Kernels representatives played, with their four position players also starting the game. Jermaine Palacios was the shortstop, batted second in the Western division lineup, and was 1-2 with a single before being lifted in the mass substitutions in the fifth inning. Lewin Diaz batted clean-up and manned first base, and put his squad out front 2-1 in the fourth inning with a two-run home run. If not for a two-home run game from one of his all-star team mates, he might have been player of the game (he’ll have to settle for the Twins “Daily” MiLB Award) Travis Blankenhorn was at third base and batted sixth in the lineup. He flew out in both his plate appearances. Mitchell Kranson started the game as the designated hitter, but also finished the game at first base. He doubled in the fifth inning and was 1-4 on the game. Pitchers Sean Poppen and Clark Beeker both gave scoreless appearances. Poppen struck out one in a one-two-three second inning, and Beeker gave up a double in the sixth and was replaced with two outs. The Cedar Rapids Kernels get back to action on Thursday on the road against the Quad Cities River Bandits, whom the Kernels edged out for the second Western Division playoff-spot in the first half. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Pitcher of the Day – Anthony McIver, Fort Myers Miracle (3.2 IP, 2 H’s, 4 K’s) Hitter of the Day – Lewin Diaz, Cedar Rapids Kernels (1-2, HR, 2 RBI in MWL All-Star Game) WEDNESDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Buffalo @ Rochester (12:35PM CST) – LHP Hector Santiago (first rehab start) Chattanooga – No game. Southern League All-Star break. Fort Myers @ Jupiter (5:30PM CST) – RHP Cody Stashak (2-3, 4.02 ERA) Cedar Rapids – No game. Midwest League All-Star break. Please feel free to ask questions and discuss Tuesday’s games!
  19. Rain won the day at Target Field on Wednesday. All four Twins minor league affiliates played, and there were some wild games. There was a very impressive pitching performance, and there were some big offensive showings. Two hitters were a triple away from the cycle. However, we start today with a very sad news in the Twins minor league report. We learned today from the San Diego Tribune-Union that Henry Sanchez died due to synovial sarcoma, a rare form of cancer. Sanchez was a supplemental first-round pick of the Twins in 2005, known for his tremendous power. He struggled on and off the field and was let go shortly into the 2009 season.Find out everything and more that happened happened in the Twins system on Wednesday night, starting with the transactions of the day. TRANSACTIONS Check out the transactions through the minor league system on Wednesday: Chattanooga placed RHP Todd Van Steensel on the disabled list with a groin strain. Taking his place is RHP Alex Wimmers (who had been sent to extended spring training on Monday from Rochester).Because of the doubleheader Thursday, the Twins are able to call up a 26th man. That player will be RHP Drew Rucinski.RED WINGS REPORTRochester 8, Lehigh Valley 11 (11 innings) Box Score In his first four starts this season, lefty David Hurlbut gave up a total of four runs in 22.1 innings. He had his first clunker of 2017 on Wednesday night. He was charged with seven runs on nine hits (two homers) and a walk in just 3.2 innings. Alan Busenitz came on and was terrific. The hard-throwing right-hander gave up just one hit over 3.1 scoreless innings. He struck out five without issuing a walk. Michael Tonkin came in for the 8th inning, protecting a one-run lead. He gave up a solo homer to tie the game, but he then worked scoreless innings in the ninth and 10th innings. Kevin Chapman came in for the 11th frame. He gave up three runs (two earned) on three hits in the inning to take the loss. The offense provided plenty of support. Byungho Park went 3-4 with his fourth double. JB Shuck was 3-4 with a walk and his fifth double. John Ryan Murphy went 2-5 with his third homer, a three-run shot. Matt Hague and Daniel Palka each went 2-5 with a double. It was Palka’s fifth and Matt Hague’s third. In the bottom of the 10th, the Red Wings got to go through the Pat Venditte Experience. Venditte is the ambidextrous pitcher who has moved up and down from AAA to the big leagues the last few seasons. The bases were loaded, but John Ryan Murphy grounded into a double play to end the threat to end the game. For Lehigh Valley, old friend Pedro Florimon went 5-5 with a double and is hitting .349 on the season. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 6 Birmingham 8 Box Score It was an early start on Wednesday for the Lookouts. Their fifth and final game of a home series against Birmingham began at 11:15 local time. Following the game, the Lookouts headed to Biloxi for their next five-game series. Down 2-0 in the third inning, TJ White, Ryan Strausborger and Nick Gordon hit doubles to tie the score at two. Then in the bottom of the fourth inning, Levi Michael added a two-run homer to put the Lookouts on top. It was his first homer of the season. They added two more on an Edgar Corcino single. But that was it for the offense. In fact, after that fourth inning, they didn’t have another hit. The one base runner reached on a walk and was erased immediately by a double play. Felix Jorge was strong through six innings. He gave up an early two-run homer, but that was it. Until the seventh inning. He started the inning with a strikeout, but then he loaded the bases with a walk, a single and another walk. That’s when Mason Melotakis came in. Melotakis gave up a pinch-hit, grand slam and the game was tied. After recording the inning’s second out, he gave up a single which was followed by another home run. That gave the Kernels their 8-6 deficit that ended up being the final score. Melotakis worked a scoreless eighth frame. John Curtiss did pitch the ninth inning as well. He has now pitched 13 games this season, and in 14.2 innings, he is yet to allow a run. He has 19 strikeouts. However, he’s also given up nine walks to go with nine hits. TJ White was the lone Lookouts hitter with more than one hit. He went 2-4 with his first double. MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers 3, Clearwater 1 Box Score Complete games are a rarity in minor league baseball. Pitch counts are more tightly monitored, and especially in the lower levels, the pitchers are young and will be taken care of. However, on Wednesday night, lefty Lachlan Wells delivered a complete game in a Miracle win. Wells gave up a double to lead off the game. After a sacrifice bunt, the run scored on a ground ball. After that, it was eight straight shutout innings. In fact, only one more runner the whole game reached second base. He gave up the one run on four hits and two walks. He struck out four. Most important, he needed just 92 pitches (67 strikes) to complete the game and win his second game of the season and reduce his ERA to 3.51. No surprise. It was the first complete game of his career. Offensively, the Miracle offense waited an inning to do their scoring. In the bottom of the second inning, Daniel Kihle launched a three-run homer, his third of the season. That was it for the Miracle offense, at least in terms of runs scored. After hitting a walk-off home run the night before, Chris Paul added two hits on Wednesday. Rafael Valera walked twice. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 7, Peoria 4 Box Score It looked as if Wednesday’s Kernels game had the potential to be a long one. Through two innings, a combined ten runs had already been scored. However, just one more run was scored the rest of the game. The Kernels got a two-run homer from Lewin Diaz in the bottom of the first inning, his fifth of the season. Sean Poppen gave up three runs in the top of the second frame, but the Kernels put up a five-spot in the bottom of the second inning. Aaron Whitefield drove in a run with a single before Jermaine Palacios launched a three-run homer, his fourth of the year. Two batters later, Mitchell Kranson hit his third homer of the year, a solo shot. Palacios had been in a bit of a slump, seeing his average drop from .398 to .326 over the past 13 games during which he hit .196. However, on this day, he went 3-5 with his eighth double, fourth homer and he stole his sixth base. Mitchell Kranson went 3-4 with his 12th double and third home run. That’s two guys who ended the day a triple shy of the cycle. Brandon Lopez went 3-4 with his second double. Aaron Whitefield went 3-5. Ben Rortvedt went 2-4 in the game. Sean Poppen made the start. The right-hander from Harvard gave up three runs (two earned) on five hits and a walk in six innings. He struck out five. He has completed six innings in all seven of his starts this season. Zach Tillery came on for his first appearance of the year and in a year. He gave up a run on three walks in his inning. It was his first appearance since May 7, 2016, with the Kernels. He missed the year with a shoulder injury. Alex Robinson recorded his second save with two shutout innings. He struck out four. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Lachlan Wells, Ft. Myers Miracle Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Jermaine Palacios/Mitchell Kranson, Cedar Rapids Kernels THURSDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Lehigh Valley @ Rochester (12:35 CST) - LHP Jason Wheeler Chattanooga @ Biloxi (6:35 CST) - RHP Fernando Romero Clearwater @ Ft. Myers (5:35 CST) - RHP Brady Anderson Cedar Rapids @ Wisconsin (6:35 CST) - LHP Domenic Carlini IV Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss Wednesday’s games. Click here to view the article
  20. Find out everything and more that happened happened in the Twins system on Wednesday night, starting with the transactions of the day. TRANSACTIONS Check out the transactions through the minor league system on Wednesday: Chattanooga placed RHP Todd Van Steensel on the disabled list with a groin strain. Taking his place is RHP Alex Wimmers (who had been sent to extended spring training on Monday from Rochester). Because of the doubleheader Thursday, the Twins are able to call up a 26th man. That player will be RHP Drew Rucinski. RED WINGS REPORT Rochester 8, Lehigh Valley 11 (11 innings) Box Score In his first four starts this season, lefty David Hurlbut gave up a total of four runs in 22.1 innings. He had his first clunker of 2017 on Wednesday night. He was charged with seven runs on nine hits (two homers) and a walk in just 3.2 innings. Alan Busenitz came on and was terrific. The hard-throwing right-hander gave up just one hit over 3.1 scoreless innings. He struck out five without issuing a walk. Michael Tonkin came in for the 8th inning, protecting a one-run lead. He gave up a solo homer to tie the game, but he then worked scoreless innings in the ninth and 10th innings. Kevin Chapman came in for the 11th frame. He gave up three runs (two earned) on three hits in the inning to take the loss. The offense provided plenty of support. Byungho Park went 3-4 with his fourth double. JB Shuck was 3-4 with a walk and his fifth double. John Ryan Murphy went 2-5 with his third homer, a three-run shot. Matt Hague and Daniel Palka each went 2-5 with a double. It was Palka’s fifth and Matt Hague’s third. In the bottom of the 10th, the Red Wings got to go through the Pat Venditte Experience. Venditte is the ambidextrous pitcher who has moved up and down from AAA to the big leagues the last few seasons. The bases were loaded, but John Ryan Murphy grounded into a double play to end the threat to end the game. For Lehigh Valley, old friend Pedro Florimon went 5-5 with a double and is hitting .349 on the season. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 6 Birmingham 8 Box Score It was an early start on Wednesday for the Lookouts. Their fifth and final game of a home series against Birmingham began at 11:15 local time. Following the game, the Lookouts headed to Biloxi for their next five-game series. Down 2-0 in the third inning, TJ White, Ryan Strausborger and Nick Gordon hit doubles to tie the score at two. Then in the bottom of the fourth inning, Levi Michael added a two-run homer to put the Lookouts on top. It was his first homer of the season. They added two more on an Edgar Corcino single. But that was it for the offense. In fact, after that fourth inning, they didn’t have another hit. The one base runner reached on a walk and was erased immediately by a double play. Felix Jorge was strong through six innings. He gave up an early two-run homer, but that was it. Until the seventh inning. He started the inning with a strikeout, but then he loaded the bases with a walk, a single and another walk. That’s when Mason Melotakis came in. Melotakis gave up a pinch-hit, grand slam and the game was tied. After recording the inning’s second out, he gave up a single which was followed by another home run. That gave the Kernels their 8-6 deficit that ended up being the final score. Melotakis worked a scoreless eighth frame. John Curtiss did pitch the ninth inning as well. He has now pitched 13 games this season, and in 14.2 innings, he is yet to allow a run. He has 19 strikeouts. However, he’s also given up nine walks to go with nine hits. TJ White was the lone Lookouts hitter with more than one hit. He went 2-4 with his first double. MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers 3, Clearwater 1 Box Score Complete games are a rarity in minor league baseball. Pitch counts are more tightly monitored, and especially in the lower levels, the pitchers are young and will be taken care of. However, on Wednesday night, lefty Lachlan Wells delivered a complete game in a Miracle win. Wells gave up a double to lead off the game. After a sacrifice bunt, the run scored on a ground ball. After that, it was eight straight shutout innings. In fact, only one more runner the whole game reached second base. He gave up the one run on four hits and two walks. He struck out four. Most important, he needed just 92 pitches (67 strikes) to complete the game and win his second game of the season and reduce his ERA to 3.51. No surprise. It was the first complete game of his career. Offensively, the Miracle offense waited an inning to do their scoring. In the bottom of the second inning, Daniel Kihle launched a three-run homer, his third of the season. That was it for the Miracle offense, at least in terms of runs scored. After hitting a walk-off home run the night before, Chris Paul added two hits on Wednesday. Rafael Valera walked twice. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 7, Peoria 4 Box Score It looked as if Wednesday’s Kernels game had the potential to be a long one. Through two innings, a combined ten runs had already been scored. However, just one more run was scored the rest of the game. The Kernels got a two-run homer from Lewin Diaz in the bottom of the first inning, his fifth of the season. Sean Poppen gave up three runs in the top of the second frame, but the Kernels put up a five-spot in the bottom of the second inning. Aaron Whitefield drove in a run with a single before Jermaine Palacios launched a three-run homer, his fourth of the year. Two batters later, Mitchell Kranson hit his third homer of the year, a solo shot. Palacios had been in a bit of a slump, seeing his average drop from .398 to .326 over the past 13 games during which he hit .196. However, on this day, he went 3-5 with his eighth double, fourth homer and he stole his sixth base. Mitchell Kranson went 3-4 with his 12th double and third home run. That’s two guys who ended the day a triple shy of the cycle. Brandon Lopez went 3-4 with his second double. Aaron Whitefield went 3-5. Ben Rortvedt went 2-4 in the game. Sean Poppen made the start. The right-hander from Harvard gave up three runs (two earned) on five hits and a walk in six innings. He struck out five. He has completed six innings in all seven of his starts this season. Zach Tillery came on for his first appearance of the year and in a year. He gave up a run on three walks in his inning. It was his first appearance since May 7, 2016, with the Kernels. He missed the year with a shoulder injury. Alex Robinson recorded his second save with two shutout innings. He struck out four. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Lachlan Wells, Ft. Myers Miracle Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Jermaine Palacios/Mitchell Kranson, Cedar Rapids Kernels THURSDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Lehigh Valley @ Rochester (12:35 CST) - LHP Jason Wheeler Chattanooga @ Biloxi (6:35 CST) - RHP Fernando Romero Clearwater @ Ft. Myers (5:35 CST) - RHP Brady Anderson Cedar Rapids @ Wisconsin (6:35 CST) - LHP Domenic Carlini IV Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss Wednesday’s games.
  21. The Minnesota Twins posted a 1-0 win in Cleveland on Friday night in a very quick game. The minor league games in the system were not as quick, but three out of four of the affiliates won. Rochester had some late-game runs off of an #OldFriend. Chattanooga and Cedar Rapids used plenty of offense and solid pitching to record wins. Finally, an experiment is not going real well in Ft. Myers.Find out everything and more that happened happened in the Twins system on Friday night, starting with the transactions of the day. TRANSACTIONS Following the Twins 1-0 win in Cleveland, the Twins announced (or made it official) that Jose Berrios was being recalled from Rochester and will start on Saturday. The other half of the transaction made for good speculation, but in the end Nick Tepesch was optioned. In Ft. Myers, Shane Kennedy was activated from the temporarily inactive list while Keaton Steele was sent to extended spring training. Down in Cedar Rapids, right-hander Tyler Wells was placed on the 7-Day disabled list. He said that he’s been fighting a bit of biceps tendinitis. He noted that it didn’t affect his velocity, “just discomfort.” He expects to miss just one start. A corresponding move will be made in the next couple of days. The Kernels play on Saturday, but they get Mother’s Day off. RED WINGS REPORT Rochester 2, Pawtucket 3 Box Score It was a quick game in Pawtucket on Friday night, but it ended with a nice, one-run win for the Red Wings. Rochester came into the game with a team ERA of just 3.13 which was second in the International League (Buffalo 3.08), and that number went down in this game. Jason Wheeler returned to the Red Wings rotation and provided a very quality start. The lefty gave up one run on five hits over six innings. He walked and struck out none. Trevor Hildenberger provided two innings of scoreless ball, with a walk and a strikeout. The game was tied at one until the eighth inning when Zack Granite doubled. Niko Goodrum followed with an RBI triple to give the team the lead. Matt Hague added an insurance run with a sacrifice fly. The Wings eighth inning runs came off of former Twins reliever Blaine Boyer. Hague's proved to be a needed insurance run. Alex Wimmers came on for the ninth inning and recorded the save despite giving up a run. It was his fourth save of the season. Granite led the offense. He went 3-4 with his first two doubles of the season. He also stole his fourth base. The team had just five total hits in the game. The win kept the Red Wings above .500 at 16-14. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 9, Montgomery 2 Box Score The Lookouts recorded a nice, big win on Friday night, 9-2. LaMonte Wade is becoming a big prospect right before our eyes. The outfielder went 2-3 with a walk, was hit by a pitch, hit his fourth home run, drove in three runs and stole his fourth base. It was kind of a showing of all that he is as a player. Jonathan Rodriguez’s 14-game hitting streak came to an end on Thursday, but he returned on Friday with a 2-4 game including his ninth double. Engelb Vielma went 1-2 with two walks. Dan Gamache added a walk and his third double. Nick Gordon had a walk and a single. Felix Jorge made the start. He gave up just two runs (one earned) on nine hits and two walks over 4.2 innings. He struck out three. Ryan Eades came on and recorded the final out of the fifth inning. He then went the remaining four innings without allowing a run. He gave up two hits, walked two and struck out six in what could be his strongest appearance of the season. The Lookouts are now 19-16 on the season. MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers 2, Charlotte 11 Box Score The Chris Anderson Experiment is off to a rocky start, and on Friday night, it got really rocky. The former first-round pick of the Dodgers started and gave up 11 runs (10 earned) on 11 hits and four walks in just three innings. (He also faced five batters in the fourth inning. Four of them scored.) Mike Theofanopoulos worked the next two innings without allowing a run. Anthony McIver worked 1.2 innings without allowing a run. He walked one and struck out one. He also hit two batters and was ejected after the second one. Alex Muren recorded the final four outs. The Miracle offense scored two runs on just three hits. Max Murphy went 1-2 with a walk. Chris Paul was 1-3 with an RBI double, his seventh of the year. Red Wing native Ryan Boldt went 2-4 with a walk in the game for Charlotte. Ft. Myers fell to 16-20 on the season. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 7, Bowling Green 3 Box Score The Kernels put together a solid game on Friday night in Bowling Green, Kentucky. Dominic Carlini IV started for Cedar Rapids. The left-hander worked the first five innings. He gave up three runs on four hits over five innings. He walked two and struck out five for his first win of the season. Alex Robinson came in and struck out two over two shutout innings. Tom Hackimer recorded his fourth save of the season with two shutout frames. Mitchell Kranson led the Kernels offense. He went 4-5 with his ninth and tenth doubles. Jaylin Davis went 2-5 with his third double, which was a two-run double in the first inning. Travis Blankenhorn and Lewin Diaz were also 2-5 in the game. Shane Carrier added his fifth double of the season which drove in a run. The Kernels improved to 19-15 on their season. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Ryan Eades, Chattanooga Lookouts Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Mitchell Kranson, Cedar Rapids Kernels SATURDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Rochester @ Pawtucket (12:05 CST) - RHP Aaron Slegers Birmingham @ Chattanooga (6:15 CST) - RHP Fernando Romero Ft. Myers @ Charlotte (5:05 CST) - RHP Dereck Rodriguez Cedar Rapids @ Bowling Green (6:35 CST) - RHP Clark Beeker Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss Friday’s games. Click here to view the article
  22. Find out everything and more that happened happened in the Twins system on Friday night, starting with the transactions of the day. TRANSACTIONS Following the Twins 1-0 win in Cleveland, the Twins announced (or made it official) that Jose Berrios was being recalled from Rochester and will start on Saturday. The other half of the transaction made for good speculation, but in the end Nick Tepesch was optioned. In Ft. Myers, Shane Kennedy was activated from the temporarily inactive list while Keaton Steele was sent to extended spring training. Down in Cedar Rapids, right-hander Tyler Wells was placed on the 7-Day disabled list. He said that he’s been fighting a bit of biceps tendinitis. He noted that it didn’t affect his velocity, “just discomfort.” He expects to miss just one start. A corresponding move will be made in the next couple of days. The Kernels play on Saturday, but they get Mother’s Day off. RED WINGS REPORT Rochester 2, Pawtucket 3 Box Score It was a quick game in Pawtucket on Friday night, but it ended with a nice, one-run win for the Red Wings. Rochester came into the game with a team ERA of just 3.13 which was second in the International League (Buffalo 3.08), and that number went down in this game. Jason Wheeler returned to the Red Wings rotation and provided a very quality start. The lefty gave up one run on five hits over six innings. He walked and struck out none. Trevor Hildenberger provided two innings of scoreless ball, with a walk and a strikeout. The game was tied at one until the eighth inning when Zack Granite doubled. Niko Goodrum followed with an RBI triple to give the team the lead. Matt Hague added an insurance run with a sacrifice fly. The Wings eighth inning runs came off of former Twins reliever Blaine Boyer. Hague's proved to be a needed insurance run. Alex Wimmers came on for the ninth inning and recorded the save despite giving up a run. It was his fourth save of the season. Granite led the offense. He went 3-4 with his first two doubles of the season. He also stole his fourth base. The team had just five total hits in the game. The win kept the Red Wings above .500 at 16-14. CHATTANOOGA CHATTER Chattanooga 9, Montgomery 2 Box Score The Lookouts recorded a nice, big win on Friday night, 9-2. LaMonte Wade is becoming a big prospect right before our eyes. The outfielder went 2-3 with a walk, was hit by a pitch, hit his fourth home run, drove in three runs and stole his fourth base. It was kind of a showing of all that he is as a player. Jonathan Rodriguez’s 14-game hitting streak came to an end on Thursday, but he returned on Friday with a 2-4 game including his ninth double. Engelb Vielma went 1-2 with two walks. Dan Gamache added a walk and his third double. Nick Gordon had a walk and a single. Felix Jorge made the start. He gave up just two runs (one earned) on nine hits and two walks over 4.2 innings. He struck out three. Ryan Eades came on and recorded the final out of the fifth inning. He then went the remaining four innings without allowing a run. He gave up two hits, walked two and struck out six in what could be his strongest appearance of the season. The Lookouts are now 19-16 on the season. MIRACLE MATTERS Ft. Myers 2, Charlotte 11 Box Score The Chris Anderson Experiment is off to a rocky start, and on Friday night, it got really rocky. The former first-round pick of the Dodgers started and gave up 11 runs (10 earned) on 11 hits and four walks in just three innings. (He also faced five batters in the fourth inning. Four of them scored.) Mike Theofanopoulos worked the next two innings without allowing a run. Anthony McIver worked 1.2 innings without allowing a run. He walked one and struck out one. He also hit two batters and was ejected after the second one. Alex Muren recorded the final four outs. The Miracle offense scored two runs on just three hits. Max Murphy went 1-2 with a walk. Chris Paul was 1-3 with an RBI double, his seventh of the year. Red Wing native Ryan Boldt went 2-4 with a walk in the game for Charlotte. Ft. Myers fell to 16-20 on the season. KERNELS NUGGETS Cedar Rapids 7, Bowling Green 3 Box Score The Kernels put together a solid game on Friday night in Bowling Green, Kentucky. Dominic Carlini IV started for Cedar Rapids. The left-hander worked the first five innings. He gave up three runs on four hits over five innings. He walked two and struck out five for his first win of the season. Alex Robinson came in and struck out two over two shutout innings. Tom Hackimer recorded his fourth save of the season with two shutout frames. Mitchell Kranson led the Kernels offense. He went 4-5 with his ninth and tenth doubles. Jaylin Davis went 2-5 with his third double, which was a two-run double in the first inning. Travis Blankenhorn and Lewin Diaz were also 2-5 in the game. Shane Carrier added his fifth double of the season which drove in a run. The Kernels improved to 19-15 on their season. TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Ryan Eades, Chattanooga Lookouts Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Mitchell Kranson, Cedar Rapids Kernels SATURDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS Rochester @ Pawtucket (12:05 CST) - RHP Aaron Slegers Birmingham @ Chattanooga (6:15 CST) - RHP Fernando Romero Ft. Myers @ Charlotte (5:05 CST) - RHP Dereck Rodriguez Cedar Rapids @ Bowling Green (6:35 CST) - RHP Clark Beeker Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss Friday’s games.
  23. April is complete. May is upon us. Today we look at some of the top hitters in the Twins organization during the season’s first month. As you would expect, there is a good mix of young prospects and veterans. There are some power-hitter types and some guys for whom on-base percentage is a more important indicator of their potential. In case you missed it, here are the previously-announced April winners: Starting Pitcher of the Month, Jose BerriosRelief Pitcher of the Month, Mason MelotakisPitching wins, but only if the hitters score enough runs in that game. There were quite a few hitters that started their seasons strong. Let’s take a look at the Top 6 hitters of the month, but first here are some players deserving of honorable mention. HONORABLE MENTION C Mitch Garver (Rochester) - .278/.435/.500 (.935). 10-36 with five doubles, one home run and eight RBI.OF Daniel Palka (Rochester) - .259/.318/.469 (.787). 21-81 with two doubles, five home runs and 13 RBI.1B/3B Matt Hague (Rochester) - .313/.398/.450 (.848). 25-80 with two doubles, three homers and 12 RBI.2B/SS Engelb Vielma (Chattanooga) - .320/.373/.387 (.760). 24-75 with five doubles and ten RBI.OF Max Murphy (Ft. Myers) - .297/.402/.432 (.834). 22-74 with four doubles, two homers and eight RBI.OF Jaylin Davis (Cedar Rapids) - .268/.341/.465 (.806). 19-71 with one double, two triples, three home runs and 11 RBI.THE TOP SIX HITTERS Number 6 – Chattanooga – 2B/SS Nick Gordon - .322/.381/.437 (.818). 28-87 with three doubles, two triples, one home run and 12 RBI. Gordon was the Twins top pick, fifth overall, in the 2014 draft out of high school in Orlando. He has gradually worked his way up the system, one step at a time, always well younger than the average player in his league. This year, he is one of the youngest players in the AA Southern League, and he’s off to a terrific start. Gordon has been the team’s leadoff hitter most every game. He’s split his time between shortstop (13 games) and second base (8 games) with Engelb Vielma and done well at both spots. Talking to Nick Gordon in spring training, it was clear that he was ready to have a big season. He told me that his confidence was very high following his AFL performance last year as well as his time in big league camp. He’s still got work to do. For instance, I think that more power will come. But at least to this point, he has taken more walks and better plate appearances, something that will help him in the long run. Number 5 – Ft. Myers – 1B Zander Wiel - .259/.337/.506 (.843). 21-81 with eight doubles, three triples, two home runs and 18 RBI. Wiel was the Twins 12th-round pick in 2015 out of Vanderbilt. He led the Midwest League in RBI in 2016. This year he has moved up to the Miracle where he is off to another solid start. To this point, he has been an extra base hit machine which is always impressive in the Florida State League. The first baseman also had 18 RBI in the month, tops in the Twins minor leagues. Last week, Wiel was taken out of a game after being hit by a 95 mph fastball in the face. He had a few stitches put in, missed one game and was back in the lineup. He’s got work to do defensively, but it will be his bat that will have to carry him up the ladder. Number 4 – Cedar Rapids – OF Aaron Whitefield - .289/.304/.566 (.877). 22-76 with five doubles, two triples, four home runs and 12 RBI. Two years ago, Aaron Whitefield was playing softball internationally for Australia. A Twins scout saw him play and decided the tremendous athlete had good size and speed, and signed him. He played just a few games in the GCL in 2015 after signing. Last year, he was the lone GCL Twins player to be named to the postseason All-Star team. He made the jump from the GCL to the Midwest League, and after some early struggles, he has been very good. He has hit mostly first or ninth in Tommy Watkins’ lineup. He has mostly played center field where he has tremendous range and a strong arm. While he will need to be more patient at the plate, He had just two walks to go with 19 strikeouts in the month, he has some natural yet raw abilities that are very encouraging. In time, he’ll hit for more power and can steal some bases. Expect some ups and downs, but the 20-year-old’s talent is immense. Number 3 - Rochester – IF Tommy Field - .314/.380/.543 (.923) 22-70 with seven doubles, three homers and five RBI Between 2011 and 2015, Field played in a combined 47 big league games for the Rockies, Angels and Rangers. The 30-year-old utility infielder came to the Twins as a free agent during the middle of the 2016 season. He showed an ability to play all three infield positions very well, as well as playing well in some outfield time. In 82 games for the Red Wings last year, Field hit .235 (.726) with 11 home runs. Field had a nice showing in big league camp this year before being sent to Rochester again. He had a strong first month. He hit over .300 with ten extra base hits while continuing to be reliable wherever manager Mike Quade puts him in the lineup or on the field. Number 2 - Cedar Rapids – C/1B Mitchell Kranson - .324/.351/.535 (.887) 23-71 with seven doubles, one triple, two homers and 11 RBI After four years at Cal-Berkeley, Kranson was the Twins ninth-round draft pick last June. He went to Elizabethton and hit. In the offseason, he lost 25 pounds and gained strength. He came to spring training looking like a different person. It’s good to see when a guy works that hard sees immediate success. He’s hit anywhere from two to five in the Kernels lineup and been productive all month. He’s hit for extra-base power. He uses the whole field well. He’s a very professional hitter. Defensively, he played first base, third base and catcher this month. He’d like to do more catching in time, though part of his value as he goes forward will be his ability to play multiple positions including behind the plate. And the Twins Minor League Hitter of the Month is: Cedar Rapids – SS Jermaine Palacios - .393/.432/.573 (1.005). 35-89 with three doubles, five triples, one home run and 11 RBI. A year ago, a 19-year-old Jermaine Palacios finished April in Cedar Rapids hitting .186/.256/.214 (.471). It didn’t get better as things warmed up, and his season came to an end after being hit by a pitch in mid-July. 2017 has been completely different. Now 20, Palacios got off to a fast start and it has continued. With a couple of hits last night, he now has a 14-game hitting streak. He’s hit the ball hard all over the field. He leads the organization in batting average, on-base percentage, slugging percentage, total bases, triples, and several other offensive categories. And despite this being his second go-round in the league, 85% of his at bats have come against older pitchers. Defensively, he’s played at shortstop every game. He’s been pretty good, posting a .955 fielding percentage. Many believe that he has the ability to stick at shortstop. While it is easy to think that the Twins should move Palacios up to Ft. Myers, and that may happen. However, he’s still got things to work on and it doesn’t hurt for him to experience some extended success at this level. Also, he has just four walks to go with 18 strikeouts, so he’ll have to continue to work on his plate discipline. However, to this point, aggressiveness has paid off for him. Congratulations to the April Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Month for 2017, Cedar Rapids shortstop Jermaine Palacios. Click here to view the article
  24. Pitching wins, but only if the hitters score enough runs in that game. There were quite a few hitters that started their seasons strong. Let’s take a look at the Top 6 hitters of the month, but first here are some players deserving of honorable mention. HONORABLE MENTION C Mitch Garver (Rochester) - .278/.435/.500 (.935). 10-36 with five doubles, one home run and eight RBI. OF Daniel Palka (Rochester) - .259/.318/.469 (.787). 21-81 with two doubles, five home runs and 13 RBI. 1B/3B Matt Hague (Rochester) - .313/.398/.450 (.848). 25-80 with two doubles, three homers and 12 RBI. 2B/SS Engelb Vielma (Chattanooga) - .320/.373/.387 (.760). 24-75 with five doubles and ten RBI. OF Max Murphy (Ft. Myers) - .297/.402/.432 (.834). 22-74 with four doubles, two homers and eight RBI. OF Jaylin Davis (Cedar Rapids) - .268/.341/.465 (.806). 19-71 with one double, two triples, three home runs and 11 RBI. THE TOP SIX HITTERS Number 6 – Chattanooga – 2B/SS Nick Gordon - .322/.381/.437 (.818). 28-87 with three doubles, two triples, one home run and 12 RBI. Gordon was the Twins top pick, fifth overall, in the 2014 draft out of high school in Orlando. He has gradually worked his way up the system, one step at a time, always well younger than the average player in his league. This year, he is one of the youngest players in the AA Southern League, and he’s off to a terrific start. Gordon has been the team’s leadoff hitter most every game. He’s split his time between shortstop (13 games) and second base (8 games) with Engelb Vielma and done well at both spots. Talking to Nick Gordon in spring training, it was clear that he was ready to have a big season. He told me that his confidence was very high following his AFL performance last year as well as his time in big league camp. He’s still got work to do. For instance, I think that more power will come. But at least to this point, he has taken more walks and better plate appearances, something that will help him in the long run. Number 5 – Ft. Myers – 1B Zander Wiel - .259/.337/.506 (.843). 21-81 with eight doubles, three triples, two home runs and 18 RBI. Wiel was the Twins 12th-round pick in 2015 out of Vanderbilt. He led the Midwest League in RBI in 2016. This year he has moved up to the Miracle where he is off to another solid start. To this point, he has been an extra base hit machine which is always impressive in the Florida State League. The first baseman also had 18 RBI in the month, tops in the Twins minor leagues. Last week, Wiel was taken out of a game after being hit by a 95 mph fastball in the face. He had a few stitches put in, missed one game and was back in the lineup. He’s got work to do defensively, but it will be his bat that will have to carry him up the ladder. Number 4 – Cedar Rapids – OF Aaron Whitefield - .289/.304/.566 (.877). 22-76 with five doubles, two triples, four home runs and 12 RBI. Two years ago, Aaron Whitefield was playing softball internationally for Australia. A Twins scout saw him play and decided the tremendous athlete had good size and speed, and signed him. He played just a few games in the GCL in 2015 after signing. Last year, he was the lone GCL Twins player to be named to the postseason All-Star team. He made the jump from the GCL to the Midwest League, and after some early struggles, he has been very good. He has hit mostly first or ninth in Tommy Watkins’ lineup. He has mostly played center field where he has tremendous range and a strong arm. While he will need to be more patient at the plate, He had just two walks to go with 19 strikeouts in the month, he has some natural yet raw abilities that are very encouraging. In time, he’ll hit for more power and can steal some bases. Expect some ups and downs, but the 20-year-old’s talent is immense. Number 3 - Rochester – IF Tommy Field - .314/.380/.543 (.923) 22-70 with seven doubles, three homers and five RBI Between 2011 and 2015, Field played in a combined 47 big league games for the Rockies, Angels and Rangers. The 30-year-old utility infielder came to the Twins as a free agent during the middle of the 2016 season. He showed an ability to play all three infield positions very well, as well as playing well in some outfield time. In 82 games for the Red Wings last year, Field hit .235 (.726) with 11 home runs. Field had a nice showing in big league camp this year before being sent to Rochester again. He had a strong first month. He hit over .300 with ten extra base hits while continuing to be reliable wherever manager Mike Quade puts him in the lineup or on the field. Number 2 - Cedar Rapids – C/1B Mitchell Kranson - .324/.351/.535 (.887) 23-71 with seven doubles, one triple, two homers and 11 RBI After four years at Cal-Berkeley, Kranson was the Twins ninth-round draft pick last June. He went to Elizabethton and hit. In the offseason, he lost 25 pounds and gained strength. He came to spring training looking like a different person. It’s good to see when a guy works that hard sees immediate success. He’s hit anywhere from two to five in the Kernels lineup and been productive all month. He’s hit for extra-base power. He uses the whole field well. He’s a very professional hitter. Defensively, he played first base, third base and catcher this month. He’d like to do more catching in time, though part of his value as he goes forward will be his ability to play multiple positions including behind the plate. And the Twins Minor League Hitter of the Month is: Cedar Rapids – SS Jermaine Palacios - .393/.432/.573 (1.005). 35-89 with three doubles, five triples, one home run and 11 RBI. A year ago, a 19-year-old Jermaine Palacios finished April in Cedar Rapids hitting .186/.256/.214 (.471). It didn’t get better as things warmed up, and his season came to an end after being hit by a pitch in mid-July. 2017 has been completely different. Now 20, Palacios got off to a fast start and it has continued. With a couple of hits last night, he now has a 14-game hitting streak. He’s hit the ball hard all over the field. He leads the organization in batting average, on-base percentage, slugging percentage, total bases, triples, and several other offensive categories. And despite this being his second go-round in the league, 85% of his at bats have come against older pitchers. Defensively, he’s played at shortstop every game. He’s been pretty good, posting a .955 fielding percentage. Many believe that he has the ability to stick at shortstop. While it is easy to think that the Twins should move Palacios up to Ft. Myers, and that may happen. However, he’s still got things to work on and it doesn’t hurt for him to experience some extended success at this level. Also, he has just four walks to go with 18 strikeouts, so he’ll have to continue to work on his plate discipline. However, to this point, aggressiveness has paid off for him. Congratulations to the April Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Month for 2017, Cedar Rapids shortstop Jermaine Palacios.
  25. Heading into their four-game series with Midwest League Western Division leaders Kane County on Thursday, the Cedar Rapids Kernels were one game under .500, trailed the Cougars by two games in the standings and were tied for second place in their division. (This article was originally posted at Knuckleballsblog.com)After trouncing Kane County 11-2 in the series finale on Sunday to earn a split of the four-game series, Cedar Rapids was one game over .500 (at 9-8), trail the Cougars by two games in the standings and are tied for second place in their division. That sounds more mediocre than it was, in reality. Kane County, the MWL affiliate of the Diamondbacks, have some game and the rest of the division will be challenged to keep up with the Cougars if they continue playing at early-season levels, so getting that split was hard work. Still, it could have been better. The Kernels had a 3-2 lead heading to the ninth inning on Thursday, but gave up three runs to the Cougars in the ninth and fell 5-3. On Saturday, The teams were tied 3-3 headed to the final stanza, where Kane County scored the winning run. In fact, in five of their eight losses this season, Cedar Rapids has surrendered the winning run in their opponent's final inning at the plate. All those close losses don't have manager Tommy Watkins concerned, however. "The good thing is, after all those games, we responded afterwards," Watkins said on Saturday. "We’ve lost a couple of games in the ninth inning, but it happens. We’ve got a young team. We’re going to take some bumps and bruises, but I think things have been pretty good to start the season." In fact, Watkins said his team has pretty much performed at expected levels. "I didn’t have any concerns with either side of the ball. Pitching or hitting. Like I said at the beginning of the season, this is a fun team to watch up and down the lineup – pitching, defense, offense, running the bases. We’ve got some guys that can steal some bases. I really enjoy having these guys here." One player that's certainly been as much fun to watch as any position player in the league has been Jermaine Palacios. "Palacios has been swinging a hot bat and giving us a real boost at the leadoff spot," Watkins said, of his shortstop. "He’s being aggressive to balls in a zone." Indeed he is. The 20-year-old native of Venezuela is hitting .406 through Sunday and he hasn't been just slapping the ball, either. Palacios has three doubles, two triples and added his first home run of the season in Sunday's win over the Cougars. He's leading the MWL in batting average and his 1.012 OPS is ninth best in the league, but not good enough to lead his own team. That honor goes to Mitchell Kranson. His six doubles, one triple and two dingers have propelled him to a 1.045 OPS. By and large, the pitching staff has been solid, as well. There have been a couple of games where, as one Kernels pitcher told me, "none of us could miss a barrel." But those instances have been rare. Cedar Rapids continues their current homestand with a three game series against the Burlington Bees (Athletics) before traveling to Peoria (Cardinals) for four games with the Chiefs beginning Thursday. I'll wrap up with a couple dozen pictures from the games on Saturday and Sunday at Veterans Memorial Stadium, as well as the traditional Sunday post-game autograph session. (It appears I've exceeded Twins Daily's limit on photos below, so if you want to see them all, you may just need to pay Knuckleballsblog.com a visit.) http://knuckleballsblog.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Dinkelman2017a900-600x400.jpgHitting coach Brian Dinkelman tossing batting practicehttp://knuckleballsblog.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/CarliniMartinez900-600x400.jpgDomenick Carlini warms up under the watchful eyes of Kernels pitching coach JP Martinezhttp://knuckleballsblog.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/DiazMonetsino2017b900-600x400.jpgLewin Diaz (48) and Ariel Montesino (21)http://knuckleballsblog.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Carlini2017a900-600x400.jpgDomenick Carlinihttp://knuckleballsblog.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Vasquez2017a900-600x399.jpgAndrew Vasquezhttp://knuckleballsblog.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/KIranson1B2017900-600x400.jpgMitchell Kranson playing first base on Saturdayhttp://knuckleballsblog.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Kranson2017a900-371x600.jpgMitchell Kranson took his turn behind the plate on Sundayhttp://knuckleballsblog.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Whitefield2017e900-600x400.jpgAaron Whitefield coming in low, and safely, to 3Bhttp://knuckleballsblog.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/VasquezCordyCDavis900-600x399.jpgAndrew Vasquez, Max Cordy and Colton Davis (L to R)http://knuckleballsblog.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/rORTVEDT2017A900-600x400.jpgBen Rortvedthttp://knuckleballsblog.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/PalaciosMontesino900-600x401.jpgAriel Montesino (21) takes a toss from Jermaine Palacios (4) to turn a double play on Sundayhttp://knuckleballsblog.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Whitefield2017d900-600x399.jpgAaron Whitefieldhttp://knuckleballsblog.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/DiazAuto900-600x400.jpgLewin Diaz signing an autograph on Sunday.http://knuckleballsblog.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Palacios2017HRa900-600x399.jpgJermaine Palacios got this ball out of the park on Sunday.http://knuckleballsblog.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Beeker2017c900-600x401.jpgClark Beekerhttp://knuckleballsblog.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Carrier2017b900-1-600x400.jpgShane Carrierhttp://knuckleballsblog.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/CavenessAuto900-600x399.jpgChristian Cavaness signing an autograph after Sunday's game.http://knuckleballsblog.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Diaz2017a900-435x600.jpgLewin Diazhttp://knuckleballsblog.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Lujan2017b900-600x398.jpgHector Lujanhttp://knuckleballsb...900-600x400.jpgClark Beeker with a pick-off move to first baseman Lewin Diazhttp://knuckleballsb...900-600x399.jpgJermaine Palacioshttp://knuckleballsb...900-600x399.jpgMitchell Kranson beats a throw into 3Bhttp://knuckleballsb...0-1-600x400.jpgBrandon Lopezhttp://knuckleballsb...900-600x401.jpgJaylin Davis scoring as Kane County catcher can't handle a throw from the outfield.http://knuckleballsb...900-600x400.jpgCaleb Hamilton launching a home run on Sundayhttp://knuckleballsb...900-600x399.jpgChristian Cavenesshttp://knuckleballsb...900-600x401.jpgTravis Blankenhorn (7) and Aaron Whitefield signing autographs.http://knuckleballsb...0-1-600x400.jpgJaylin Davis Click here to view the article
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