Wednesday, June 2, 2010
Late Night Blues
Nick Blackburn did a nice job of making me really tired and ready to sleep by about the 7th inning last night. The lasers that he was giving up early in the game eventually had to find holes. And they did. Seattle grabbed the 5-1 lead in the middle innings, and they added a couple more. But it was over. Sure, the offense didn’t do much, but Jason Vargas was effectively wild and has had a good year. Blackburn was the story. And, to be honest, it doesn’t bother me because he had such a great May that I’m not gong to worry about one rough start.
Things will not get easier in Seattle. The Twins will face Cliff Lee and Felix Hernandez in the next couple of games. It should be a lot of fun to watch. The Twins starting pitchers will have to be on their game, and the Twins offense will have to take advantage of any chances they get.
Minnesota fans, if you’re a fan of the draft, one name to watch is that of Minnesota Gophers catcher/outfielder Michael Kvasnicka. The first time I saw him play, he was a catcher as a freshman. My initial thought was that he was a future first round pick. Good size. Strong arm. Switch-hitting catcher. Good athlete also able to play in right field. I saw him play a few games in the last couple of years and again, he is a player. Here are some links to stories and scouting reports on Kvasnicka (whose father Jay was a 8th round draft pick of the Twins in 1988.
· Fanhouse.com’s most recent mock draft has him going 19th overall to the Houston Astros.
· Five Tool Talk says Kvasnicka is “soaring up draft charts as more and more people are starting to believe in his return behind the plate after playing right field.”
· Here are the PNR Scouting rankings of the available outfielders.
· Perfect Game recently mentioned Kvasnicka among 10 Draft Surprises.
It will be interesting to see where and to whom Michael Kvasnicka is drafted. If you’re looking for more Mock Drafts, click here.
Here is a quick glance at what happened on Tuesday in the Twins minor league system:
SethSpeaks Tuesday Minor League Hitter of the Day – Estarlin de Los Santos – New Britain Rockcats
SethSpeaks Tuesday Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Glen Perkins – Rochester Red Wings
Red Wings Report
Tuesday – Rochester 3, Norfolk 4 –Anthony Slama came in to a tie game and gave up a run on three hits and an intentional walk in the 9th inning to take the loss. The good news? Glen Perkins put together a very good start, really his first of the year. The lefty went seven innings and gave up just two runs on seven hits. He walked none and struck out five. Another good story? Brad Hennessy, a reliever the Twins signed during spring training after recovering from Tommy John surgery, made his first appearance. He gave up a run on two hits and a walk in his inning. Brian Dinkelman hit two doubles in his four at bats.
New Britain Notes
Tuesday – New Britain 1, Altoona 4 – David Bromberg started and gave up two runs on nine hits and three walks in 5.1 innings. Santos Arias came in and struck out three in 2.2 scoreless innings. Michael Allen allowed two unearned run in his inning. Ben Revere went 2-4 with his 19th stolen base.
Tuesday – Ft. Myers 6, Dunedin 4 – Liam Hendriks improved to 3-1 and reduced his ERA to 2.30 with eight strong innings. He gave up three runs (1 earned) on six hits. Billy Bullock gave up a run in his inning. Estarlin de Los Santos went 3-4 with his fifth steal. Deibinson Romero went 2-4 with his fifth double.
Tuesday – Beloit 2, Lake County 3 – Tom Stuifbergen returned to the mound as a starter in this game. The righty gave up two runs on five hits in 3.2 innings. Edgar Ibarra gave up one run on two hits and three walks in 2.2 innings. Matt Tone worked 1.2 scoreless innings. Michael Gonzales knocked his sixth home run of the season to account for the Snappers’ runs.
If you have any thoughts, please feel free to comment here.
Tuesday, June 1, 2010
I am back. I certainly hope everyone had a great Memorial Day weekend, wherever you were. I spent three days at the lake cabin and didn’t even turn on the computer the whole time. It was tough, but was probably a good, necessary thing. Thank you for your patience and continued support of me and this site. Here are just some quick notes to start your day. I think tomorrow I’ll be back with a more normal blog post:
· I posted a blog on the StarTribune.com TwinsCentric blog last night called What’s Not to Love? It’s a look at all the great things about this great game of baseball. Hopefully you will check it out and add more!
· The Twins got a nice 5-4 win over the Seattle Mariners last night, quite late. Jon Rauch got hit but recorded another save. Francisco Liriano looked good through six innings. Jesse Crain dominated the seventh frame, which was great to see. Matt Guerrier was excellent in the eighth inning. The Twins used power to win this game. Delmon Young, Michael Cuddyer and Jason Kubel each homered for the Twins.
· With Orlando Hudson out for a couple of days, Michael Cuddyer started at 2B for the first time since 2005. I liked the move, although I know a lot of people didn’t. He’s obviously not a 2B and would not be a good option on a regular basis, but for one game, I liked it because it presented a way to get Young, Kubel, Cuddyer and Jim Thome in the lineup together. Cuddyer held his own at 2B defensively.
· Following the game, the Twins put Alexi Casilla on the DL with his elbow problems and promoted Matt Tolbert to the big league club again. Since the Twins chose Tolbert, it tells me that the team believes Hudson will only be out for a day or two. Hopefully Cuddyer is back at 2B, although with lefty Jason Vargas on the mound for the Mariners, it may not be a great thing to have both Kubel and Thome in the lineup.
· John asked What's Going on with the DL? It is a question at the top of mind of many Twins fans because it is truly a ridiculous situation that the Twins have put themselves in several times already this year.
· Rochester lost 2-1 to Norfolk. Rob Delaney got the loss after giving up one run in the last two innings. The bats had just five hits. Brian Dinkelman had a double. Tolbert had a triple. The story of this game was the start of Anthony Swarzak. The righty gave up just one run on three hits and a walk over seven innings.
· Kyle Gibson faced Casey Kelly in New Britain’s game against Portland. Portland won 10-6. Gibson gave up two runs on five hits in five innings. He walked three and struck out three. Steve Singleton had two doubles in four at bats. Mark Dolenc was 2-3 with a walk, a double and a triple.
· Ft. Myers was not scheduled to play on Monday. Beloit’s game against Peoria was postponed by rain. Tom Stuifbergen was scheduled to start, which is a good thing.
· I’m sure you saw already, but over the weekend, the Twins Dominican Summer League team got started. Uber-prospect Miguel Sano hit a home run on the first pitch he saw. He added a triple later in the game.
· Be sure to tune in to Twins Minor League Weekly tonight at 10:00 as Travis Aune and I will discuss the Twins minor league system. We always enjoy doing that.
· At 1:10 today, I will be a guest with Eric Peterson on WDAY radio (970 Fargo) and WDAY.com.
· If you have any questions or comments on anything, please feel free to e-mail me.