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  1. It's a new day in the United States, Joe Biden is now the President. It's also a new day for the back of the Minnesota Twins' rotation, J.A. Happ is now the number 4 starter. 38 year old J.A. (pronounced like "jay" not "j" "a") Happ has signed an $8 Million, 1 year deal to pitch in Minnesota. Happ isn't a particularly sexy signing, but he has been a productive middle/back of the rotation starter for several playoff teams throughout his career. Happ has accumulated 21.3 fWAR throughout his career, and is projected for about 1.5 more this year. Happ has a solid 150+ innings, sub 4 ERA pitcher ever since 2015 with the exception of 2019. Projections for Happ have him at a 4.5 ERA making him a dependable number 4 starter. There's no reason to expect anything worse from Happ than these projections as Happ's underlying numbers also rebounded in 2020, suggesting 2019 is an outlier and Happ is in line to be a more than capable 4 starter, and be serviceable as a number 3 should he need be. The Twins have found their ace in Kenta, which alleviates Jose who is really a 1B, and allows him to be a strong option in a game two in the playoffs. Pineda has been terrific and also capable of handling a game 3. The addition of Happ gives the Twins a number 4 that can take the mound in game 4 of a 7 game series should the Twins get to the ALCS.
  2. Adalberto Mejia (what the heck is his nickname...Bert?) is looking gradually more comfortable on the mound for our favorite baseball team. Watching his performance today, I saw a very well-controlled first inning, then an emotional oscillation in the second inning, and so on. Most importantly, he is clearly getting better at keeping his emotions under control. It's still a struggle, and his teammates should keep telling him, "Make 'em hit a ball at me!" It will probably be a while before Mejia attains the Zen-like calm of Erv Santana, but Bert looks like he's getting over his early nerves. Welcome to the Show, Bert! Guess what - you belong here!
  3. From the album: High School Baseball 2015

    Mahtomedi Zephyrs (4) vs. Henry Sibley (0), April 29, 2015, 3:45 PM CDT.

    © Sharon Hosch

  4. From the album: High School Baseball 2015

    Mahtomedi Zephyrs (4) vs. Henry Sibley (0), April 29, 2015, 3:45 PM CDT.

    © Sharon Hosch

  5. From the album: High School Baseball 2015

    Mahtomedi Zephyrs (4) vs. Henry Sibley (0), April 29, 2015, 3:45 PM CDT. Hjelle tossed a complete game shutout, and unless he allowed a runner in the 1st (unfortunately I showed up late), every inning was perfect save the 2 hits he gave up in the 4th. I didn't keep track, but I'd have to say that he got at least 10 strikeouts. Yesterday I saw him pitch against Simley, and he struck out the side in the last 3 innings. Again, I didn't keep track, but if I had to guess I'd say at least 15. Needless to say, he's a super fun guy to watch. It's always nice when Mahtomedi has prospects for the draft.

    © Sharon Hosch

  6. Date of Birth: December 3, 1992 (Age 19) Hometown: Manicuare, Venezuela Position: Pitcher Throws Right; Bats Right Frame: 6'2", 190lbs. Acquired: Agreed to terms as an Undrafted Free Agent in January 2010 Other Notes: Was the GCL Twins Ace in 2011 Rookie Ball; Hasn't allowed a HR in 2 years of pitching Suggested Nicknames : "The Matador", "Automatac", "Babyface" Prospect Organization Ranking: 29th in Baseball America, 49th in TwinkieTown.com's 2012 Top 50 Statistics: 2010 Dominican Summer League: 59.1 IP; 1-5 W/L; 2.12 ERA; 1.096 WHIP; 1CG; 8.2 K/9; 3.60 K/BB 2011 Gulf Coast League: 37 IP; 0-1 W/L; 1.46 ERA; 1.135 WHIP; 0CG; 7.3 K/9; 1.58 K/BB 2012 Gulf Coast League begins late June Summary: Angel Mata is a talented, international player in the Twins minor league system. Angel is a right handed pitcher who understands the game and is very fundamentally sound. He plays defense well, holds runners, and can lay down a bunt if required to hit. "The Matador" tops out at 96 mph on the radar gun and has decent movement on all of his pitches. Currently, he has three pitches mastered in his arsenal: a Four Seam Fastball, a Slider, and a Cut Fastball. Angel relies on ground balls to get most of his outs and has an extremely high rate induced with a 56%. Mata can struggle with command at times, and a move to the bullpen could be possible. He typically pitches 3 or 4 innings when he starts; although, he has shown glimpses of stamina in a few games. His work ethic has been a question mark more recently and it may be the biggest blockade for an eventual major league appearance. The Twins can only hope that it is maturity issue and that Angel Mata will become more determined with age. Despite the effort, he has shown no signs of being a clubhouse cancer and would likely be a good teammate. As a teenager, Mata has continually breezed through the fRk and Rk levels with excellent numbers. If he's fortunate, a spot could very well open up for him in Beloit prior to the GCL's start in late June. Another successful season with the GCL Twins may all but guarantee a promotion if he doesn't get one this Summer. Strengths: Average Velocity, Defense, Stamina Weaknesses: Work Ethic, Spotty Control, Lacks "Stuff", Small Frame, Wish He Had a 4th Out Pitch Potential Upside: #4 Starter (I'd like to make a comparison to an MLB player, but he's not on Youtube so I can't watch delivery, mechanics etc.) ETA: 2017 (IF he can progress) Sources: Baseball Reference, BBN
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