Monday, May 16, 2005
Twins Minor League Report
Good Monday morning everybody! Well, I was out of town much of the weekend. Actually, Friday night I got my very first Texas Hold 'Em win. That's right. I won! Normally, I am remembered as a guy who was out of one tournament in three hands. But from now on, I will always be able to say that I have a win! Of course, we played a second game, and well, I went all-in with a 2-4 off suit. So, now I can also be known as a guy who has lost out in just one hand! Oh well.
First things first, thank you to all of you who took the time to e-mail me your thoughts on the 2009 Twins! I think that was a fun article and got a lot of very positive comments on it.
Anyway, I do have a correction from my entry on Friday. In it, I mentioned that the new issue of Gameday magazine with the article on the Twins bloggers including a review of a number of the sites including this one, would be available outside the Metrodome. Apparently as of Friday night, the new issue was not available. I understand it will be tomorrow night when the Twins start a three game set against Corey Koskie on the Toronto Blue Jays.
First things first, my Blogger Minute aired on Saturday before the Twins game, during the Twins Magazine Show. I am never sure quite what to write about. I mean, what is interesting to me isn't always interesting to others. So, here is what I prepared for the segment. I wasn't able to hear it on the radio, and haven't been sent the mp3 yet (if I can figure out how to post that, I will do so), so I don't know exactly how it sounded or if this is even close to what I read, but here is what I had planned:
With the recent exception of Johan Santana, the Twins have not had great left handed pitching since 1988 when Allan Anderson led the league in ERA and Frank Viola won the Cy Young Award.
JC Romero had his one great season and since has made it a point to allow as many inherited runners as possible to score. Terry Mulholland has a rubber arm, but can he still get anyone out?
But don't worry, Twins fans, help is on the way. The Twins have made it a priority to draft and develop a lot of pitching prospects, and many of them are left-handed. We have already seen that when his location is on David Gassner can get big league hitters out. Ricky Barrett, after missing the 2003 season with Tommy John surgery, ahs been great this year, already jumping from AA New Britain to AAA Rochester successfully.
Still at New Britain is Francisco Liriano, whose ceiling is as high as any pitching prospect in baseball. Jason Miller throws really hard too. John Thomas came over from the Giants for Dustan Mohr and is 2-1.
There are a couple of 2004 draft picks who could be fast-tracked. Glen Perkins has struck out 20 and walked just 3 in 16 innings. 8th rounder Jay Sawatski has yet to allow a run in 18 innings.
And finally, at Beloit, Alexander Smit is a high-ceiling prospect, although he is struggling with his first full-season team. Justin Jones came over in the Doug Mientkiewicz deal. Kyle Aselton has 30 strikeouts in 23 innings, and Kevin Culpepper has 26 in 25 innings.
The Twins system is full of legitimate left-handed pitching prospects. In coming years, the big league staff could be as lefty-loaded as their potential lineup which could include lefties Joe Mauer, Justin Morneau, Jason Kubel, Matt Moses and Alex Romero.
This kind of organizational depth should be excited to Twins fans, almost as exciting as a new outdoor stadium would be!
Well, I now feel the need to update a couple of things:
1.) Ricky Barrett was sent back down to New Britain to make room for the return of Scott Baker (not sure why he was selected, he was doing well at Rochester. Of course, Friday night he got four outs and struck out for the Rockcats.)
2.) Jay Sawatski, on Friday night, gave up three earned runs in an inning of work.)
The Twins hosted the Rangers over the weekend and won just one of three games. They had a chance to win Friday night's game, but a lot of strange things happened, including Joe Nathan giving up runs. If I'm going to be honest, I watched about one inning of the Twins this weekend, so I am not much of a source. So today, I will just point out a couple of highlights from each game. I will then post just a few thoughts I had from reading the box scores and things I heard. E-mail me any questions or comments.
Here are a few highlights followed by a couple of other thoughts:
Friday night - Twins 6, Rangers 9 (11 innings)
Joe Mays 6.1 IP, 5 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 0 BB, 2 K, Jesse Crain 0.2 IP, 2 K, Juan Rincon 1.1 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, JC Romero 1.1 IP, 1 K, Joe Nathan 1 IP, 5 H, 3 ER, Terry Mulholland 0.1 IP, 1 K, Shannon Stewart 2-6, Joe Mauer 2-6, 2B, 2 RBI, Justin Morneau 2-6, 2B, Torii Hunter 2-6, 3 RBI - Chad Allen game-winning hit
Saturday night - Twins 0, Rangers 5
Carlos Silva 7 IP, 9 H, 4 ER, 1 BB, 3 K, Kyle Lohse 2 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, Juan Castro 2-4, 2B, Matthew LeCroy 2-3. Kenny Rogers CG Shutout
Sunday afternoon - Twins 5, Rangers 2
Shannon Stewart 2-3, 2B, HR(4), 2 R, 4 RBI, Nick Punto 3-4, Michael Cuddyer 3-4, 2-2B, Brad Radke (W 4-3) 7 IP, 7 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 2 K, Juan Rincon 1 IP, 3 K, Joe Nathan (S-11) 1 IP, 2 K)
Here are just some random thoughts from the series:
1.) Joe Mays has pitched six great innings in each of his past three starts. He has gone out for the 7th in each case and Gardy has had to take him out after he gave up a couple of runs. So, what does a manager do in this situation? Just automatically know that Mays has to be taken out after six no matter what? What if he has only thrown 65 pitches? What if he has been dominant? So Mays seems to hit a wall in the 7th inning. I think that the right thing to do is to keep him in for the 7th inning. First, stamina does need to be built. Hindsight is always 20/20, but in each of the three starts, I believe Gardy made the right choice. The only argument that could be made is that someone should be warmed up in the bullpen so that Mays can be replaced right away.
2.) Hey Jacque, it's called a release point... find one! I'm sorry, and I think that Jacque is a great defensive outfielder. Great, that is, with the glove. For as strong as his arm is, it is impossible to know where the ball will wind up when Jacque throws it. In Sunday's game, he caught a fly ball and tried to throw home to get Mark Teixeira at home, but the throw from mid-to-deep right field flew well over catch Joe Mauer's head. It isn't as if this is a new problem. I went to Opening Day two or three years ago. Jacque was still in left field. He caught a fly ball in deep left field, where we were sitting, and he tried to make a throw to 2B, and it had to be caught by the first baseman, near first base. These are not the only two examples either. It happens all the time. How about, just hit the cutoff man and see what happens!?
3.) Why would Juan Castro get two straight starts at SS?
4.) Kyle Lohse gave up another homer, this time out of the bullpen in some mop-up action. Clearly he is the Twins #5 starter, at best. I just wish he'd stay in the bullpen.
5.) Brad Radke now has two walks this year, in .
TWINS MINOR LEAGUE REPORTS
Friday - REDWINGS 11, Scranton/Wilkes Barre 5 - A big offensive game for the Redwings didn't help starter JD Durbin because many of the runs came in the later innings. Durbin started and gave up two runs, on seven hit and three walks, in five innings. Bud Smith steals the win by going 1.1 innings. He gave up three runs (2 earned) on two hits and two walks. Beau Kemp gave up two hits and a walk, but no runs, in 2.2 innings. Michael Ryan went 3-4 with a double. Luis Rodriguez went 3-3 with an RBI double. Jason Tyner and Josh Rabe were both 2-4. Brent Abernathy and Todd Dunwoody were each 2-5. Abernathy hit his third homer. Rob Bowen had a three-run triple.
Saturday - REDWINGS, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre - Rained Out.
Sunday - Game 1 - REDWINGS 4, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 3 - David Gassner started and went five innings. He gave up just one run on four hits and a walk. He struck out one. Willie Eyre improved to 3-2 with his well-timed inning. He gave up two runs on three hits and two walks. Travis Bowyer recorded his sixth save with a three strikeout inning. Brent Abernathy hit his fourth homer.
Sunday - Game 2 - REDWINGS 5, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 8 - Official Minor Leaguers of Seth Speaks, Chris Coste was the hero of this game for the Scranton/Wilkes Barre Barons. He came to the plate in the bottom of the 7th with his team down a run and the bases loaded. His grand slam gave them an 8-5 win. Coste went 2-3 with a walk, his fourth double, fifth home run and the four RBI. The other story of the game was that Scott Baker finally got another start. He went just four innings and gave up two runs on four hits and three walks. He struck out three. Henry Bonilla came in and gave up two in two innings. Daylon Childress took the loss by giving up the four runs in his inning. Brent Abernathy led the offense with a 3-4 day that included a double. Jason Tyner went 2-3 with his first home run. Any time Tyner hits a homer is surprising. This was his 2nd professional homer and it led off the game. Josh Rabe hit his third homer.
NEW BRITAIN ROCKCATS
Friday - ROCKCATS 1, Akron 3 - Colby Miller lost for the second time this year. He started and went 6.2 innings. He gave up three runs on five hits and a shocking five strikeouts. He struck out five. The Rockcats had just three hits, but Luis Maza and Gil Velazquez each had a double.
Saturday - ROCKCATS 3, Akron 9 - Levale Speigner falls to 0-5. In six innings, he gave up five runs (4 earned) on seven hits and a walk. He struck out six. John Thomas then gave up three runs in an inning. Jim Abbott gave up a run in his two innings.
Sunday - ROCKCATS 4, New Hampshire 3 (13) - Francisco Liriano was back on the right track yesterday. He gave up two runs on six hits and just one walk in eight innings. He also struck out 10. Pat Neshek came in and pitched the next three innings. He gave up two hits and walked one, but didn't allow a run. Jan Granado gets the win, although he gave up an unearned run in two innings. Luis Jimenez went 2-6 with his fifth homer. It was a two run shot in the bottom of the 13th to end the game. Rickey Bell was 2-5 with a double. Gabby Torres was 2-3 with two walks.
FT MYERS MIRACLE
Friday - MIRACLE 6, St. Lucie 10 - Adam Harben got a start. He went six innings and gave up five runs (4 earned) on five hits and three walks. He struck out five. Julio DePaula went 2 innings and gave up two runs. Jay Sawatski gave up his first runs on the season, three to be exact, in his one inning.
Saturday - MIRACLE, St. Lucie - Rained Out.
Sunday - MIRACLE 6, Daytona 7 - Nick Blackburn got another start and went six innings. He gave up four runs (2 earned) on six hits and a walk. He struck out six. Chris Schutt gave up three runs on a hit and two walks in 1.1 innings. Josh Gray got two outs on strikeouts. Matt Moses went 2-4 with a walk. Ben Pattee went 2-3.
Friday - SNAPPERS 7, Peoria 0 - Anthony Swarzak continues to impress. He improves to 4-2 with his six inning performance. He didn't allow a run on six hits allows. As usual, he walked none, and he also struck out five. Kevin Culpepper allowed just a walk in two innings and struck out three. David Shinskie pitched a scoreless inning. David Winfree went 3-4 with a double. Deacon Burns went 2-4 with a double. Jeremy Pickrel went 2-4 with two RBI. Dwayne White had two doubles in three at bats.
Saturday - SNAPPERS 1, Quad Cities 4 - Kyle Waldrop gave up four runs (3 earned) in six innings. He gave up six hits. He walked none and struck out six. Evan Meek and Jonathon Martinez each pitched a scoreless frame. The Snappers had just five hits, but Luke Hughes had a double and a walk.
Sunday - SNAPPERS 5, Fort Wayne 1 - Jay Rainville started and also went six innings. He gave up two runs on four hits and three walks, striking out five. Kyle Aselton gave up a whit and a walk and got just one out. Steven Duguay went 1 2/3 innings and gave up three runs on a hit and two walks. Jeremy Pickrel went 3-4 with a double and an RBI. Paul Rutgers went 2-4 with an RBI double.
On that note, I am going to call it a day. I hope you have a great week! Thanks again for stopping by this site. If you have any questions, comments or ideas for future postings, please e-mail me.
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