Thursday June 3, 2004
TWINS LOSE AGAIN
TWINS MINOR LEAGUE REPORT
FOR A LOOK AT MY ONE-YEAR ANNIVERSARY POSTING, CLICK HERE
Q&A with CJ Nitkowski, LH Pitcher, Atlanta Braves
QUICK TWINS UPDATES
**Please head over to The View from The Bleachers and vote in The World Series of Blogs! They have included SethSpeaks in the AL Central contendas.
*Be sure to check back tomorrow for an interesting conversation that I had with Kirk Beller discussing the Twins, the future, the draft, SABRmetrics, blogging and much more.
TWINS LOSE TO D-RAYS... AGAIN!
Twins 2, Devil Rays 4 - Brad Radke was the victim of a lack of run support again last night as the Twins fell to the Tampa Bay Devil Rays 4-2. Really, the Rays did not hit Radke hard at all, but his just fell in. He gave up three runs in 7 innings. The Twins hitters made Tampa righty Doug Waechter look good, something the Twins have done for a lot of bad pitchers lately. He actually did not give up a hit until Lew Ford singled with two outs in the sixth inning. They got just three hits off of him in 7 innings. Corey Koskie's two run homer in the 7th inning scored the lone runs for the Twins.
JC Romero continued to be disappointing, giving up the Rays 4th run in the 8th inning
On a positive note, I was able to see Joe Mauer play for the first time this year. He played just the first game and a few innings of the Twins second game and then was hurt. Of course, with the Victory Sports situation, I was unable to watch those games. I am very much impressed with Mauer from just one game. He was just 0-2 with a walk, but he just has a strong plate discipline and seems to know what he's doing at the plate. But I was even more impressed defensively. Yes, his on-the-money throw to catch Julio Lugo stealing 2B was incredible. I was as impressed with how he sets up behind the plate, and how he receives the pitches so fluidly. Yeah, he's a keeper!!
The Twins finish their series with the Devil Rays this afternoon. Johan Santana (2-3, 5.61, 1.49, .295) will face off against Mark Hendrickson (2-5, 5.27, 1.42, .287). Hopefully Santana can start pitching like the pitcher we all had such high hopes for.
What's going on with the Twins? Any thoughts on what's going on or what should happen with the Justin Morneau situation, or if the Twins should be looking to deal? What should they do? E-mail me.
TWINS MINOR LEAGUE REPORTS
Rochester had a day off yesterday. It was probably needed. Tuesday night, Rick Helling pitched a 7 inning shutout in game one of the Redwings double-header. He showered up, and in the 3rd inning of the game, he came into the dugout, shook a few hands and told them that he was leaving the team. He is not retiring at this point, he just becomes a free agent.
I really don't think that this is a big deal for the Twins. First, Rick Helling would not have been the answer for the team's woes. He would have done no better than what Seth Greisinger has done so far. I'm not saying that is good, but why not go with the younger guy. I do feel bad for Helling though. Had he not been drilled in the leg by a line drive during spring training, he would have been the team's fourth or fifth starter. Again, he would not have been good either, but at least he would have had his chance.
However, the Twins made it known that he could continue to pitch in their minor league system and sign with any other major league organization. Well, no other organizations have stepped up in the three weeks he's been available. That should tell us something too.
NEW BRITAIN ROCK CATS
Rockcats 13, New Hampshire 1 - The Rockcats' bats were on fire, and Boof Bonser continues to turn around his season. Bonser gave up the run on 5 hits and four walks over six innings. He also struck out six. Pat Neshek, Beau Kemp and Travis Bowyer each pitched a scoreless inning in relief. It was Bowyer's first AA appearance. You remember I've been updating his ERA at Ft. Myers and as of his call up, his ERA was sitting at 0.30.
DH Billy Munoz went 4-6 with a double and an RBI. 2B Luis Maza was 3-5 with a double and an RBI. RF Kevin West went 3-4 with his 11th homer and 3 RBI. CF James Tomlin went 3-5 with a double and an RBI. SS Tommy Watkins went 2-6 with a double.
A couple of Rockcats deserve some individual mention for their performances to date:
As I have mentioned before here, 2B Luis Maza is quickly becoming one of my favorite Twins prospects. He is sitting at .347/.393/.508 with 14 doubles, 3 triples, 4 homers and 28 RBI.
RF Kevin West has been hot of late, raising his batting average and continuing to hit for power. He is hitting .337/.381/.607 with 18 doubles, 11 homers and 45 RBI.
FORT MYERS MIRACLE
Miracle 4, Vero Beach 7 - The Miracle got a poor start from Josh Gray. He went just 4 innings and gave up 9 hits, a walk and 7 earned runs, with just one strikeout. Marcus Moseley gave three shutout innings followed by two scoreless innings from John Thomas (received from San Francisco for Dustan Mohr). RF Alex Romero went 2-5 with a double. SS/2B Felix Molina went 2-5 with 2 RBI. CF Trent Oeltjen was 2-5. After getting off to a very slow start, Oeltjen's batting average is now sitting at exactly .300.
THE SWING OF THE QUAD CITIES
Swing 0, Peoria 1 (10 innings) - The Swing did not play yesterday. OK, they did play, they just didn't hit, at all. The team had just five hits, four singles and a RF Scott Whitrock double. The pitching was good though. Errol Simonitsch went five shutout innings, walking none and striking out five. Chris Schutt came in and pitched four scoreless innings, walking none and striking out seven. Julio DePaula, one of the Swing's two big work horses, gave up a solo homer to Omar Pena in the 10th inning to take the loss. He falls to 6-3 on the season.
Any questions or comments on the Twins minor league system, e-mail me.
The Twins Geek discusses the decision to demote Justin Morneau with Joe Mauer coming off the DL. He also discusses the looming return of Luis Rivas and the eventual return of Shannon Stewart and what that means for others on the roster and on the bench.
Will Young discusses The Unusual Progression of Michael Cuddyer. He also wrote a great article comparing Justin Morneau to the great Jim Thome.
Aaron Gleeman discussed the Justin Morneau situation on Tuesday and then followed up with some additional thoughts on Wednesday. I just have to link to these because I want people to know that I am not the only one who thinks that the Twins are doing a disservice to Morneau and to the team as a whole by keeping Morneau out of the Twins starting lineup.
Participate in Batgirl's Bullpen Idol competition and vote a current member out of the Twins bullpen.
Twins Chatter gives its 2-month report card on the Twins. Very interesting thoughts!
And, as always, there are a lot of great, interesting and thought-provoking thoughts on the Twins posted by Twins fans on the Dickie Thon Twins Fan Forum! So, stop by there!
That is it for me for today. Have yourself a wonderful Thursday! As always, if you have any questions or comments on anything, please e-mail me.
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