Thursday, July 2, 2009
Wednesday Night Notes
TWO TICKETS - Before getting too far, I have two tickets to the Saturday, July 4th Twins/Tigers game for sale, below the face value. If you are interested and able to go to the game and want more information, please e-mail me.
SETHSPEAKS on the Radio – At 10:00 a.m. on Thursday morning, I will appear on am710 KXMR, Bismarck-Mandan’s ESPN radio affiliate. I will be on with Jack Michaels. If you are in North Dakota, or close, you may be able to tune it in, but if you’re not, they do have a Listen Live option, so you can listen to it at your desk.
On Wednesday, the Twins beat the Royals 5-1 to take the series two games to one. The win gave the Twins a record of 6-3 on this road trip. Known for their road woes, the Twins have actually gone 10-5 in their last 15 games away from the Metrodome. With the win, the Twins also reached two games over .500 for the first time all season.
Glen Perkins made the start for the Twins. The lefty gave up one run on ten hits (but no walks) over seven innings. He was able to get three inning-ending double plays to help his cause. It was his third straight seven inning outing since his six inning return from the Disabled List. R.A. Dickey threw the 8th inning, and got the first two outs in the 9th inning before Joe Nathan got the final out to secure his 21st save and the Twins win.
Joe Mauer led the offense. He went 3-3 with two walks to raise his average to .392. Michael Cuddyer gave the Twins a 1-0 lead when he hit his 12th home run of the season, a solo shot in the top of the 2nd inning. He would walk twice later in the game. Denard Span went 2-5.
The game was not without its concerns. Mike Redmond was hurt in the arm/wrist area by a foul tip and had to leave the game. He was replaced by Jose Morales behind the plate. Nick Punto finished a double play but was taken out hard and landed with a sore back. He was replaced by Brendan Harris at SS. The biggest concern was that Justin Morneau was replaced by Brian Buscher late in the game. Morneau left with a tight groin.
The Twins will now enjoy a day off on Thursday before starting a three game home stand over the weekend against the division leading Detroit Tigers.
Now, a couple of thoughts beyond the game story:
1. One thing to consider based on this game is, what would the Twins do at 1B if Justin Morneau had to go on the 15 Day Disabled List? Hopefully he was removed solely for precautionary reasons. But I do think it begs the question. I am fine with Brian Buscher being an emergency 1B. I know that Michael Cuddyer would do just fine if he had to take over the position for a couple of weeks. But would that be idea? That would basically mean that Delmon Young and Carlos Gomez would be in the lineup most games. Would the Twins add Justin Huber to the 40 man roster and promote him? Could Danny Valencia play 1B for a couple of weeks? Whit Robbins has done a nice job all year for AA New Britain, but could he even be an option? Brock Peterson was better in June. What would they do?
2. Could this be what it takes to get Nick Punto on the Disabled List, and Steve Tolleson playing 2B for the Twins most days? I know, Gardy would probably keep playing Tolbert!
3. Mike Redmond was replaced by Jose Morales in the middle innings after taking a foul tip off of his arm. Could this be what it takes to get him put on the Disabled List so that Jose Morales can stay with the big league club and actually get some playing time? In early May, I was more than happy to say that Redmond deserved the opportunity to get healthy and see what he can do. Well, he isn’t able to hit and can’t really throw, and time hasn’t helped that at all. Redmond deserves to stick around, but maybe the DL allows that to happen?
4. On Tuesday, the Pirates traded Eric Hinske to the Yankees and Nyjer Morgan and Sean Burnett to the Nationals. In a subsequent move, they added former Twin Garrett Jones to their roster and called him up.
5. Speaking of the Pirates, they are the other team, along with the Twins, rumored to be the front runners to sign Miguel Sano today when 16 year old international free agents can be signed. His signing bonus could go as high as $4 million. The linked article quotes a major league executive who has scouted Sano as saying, “I don’t think I’ve ever seen a 16-year-old who could hit like that. It’s just a smooth, fluid swing and the ball jumps off his bat. There are a lot of major-league players right now who would kill for his swing and his hitting ability. The rest of his game is good, too.”
6. Is Joe Mauer really a ‘cross between Vanilla Ice and Cypress Hill’, as Denard Span guesses? Check out this Yahoo Sports Article on Mauer.
7. Travis announces his Twins Hitter and Pitcher of the Month.
MINOR LEAGUE REPORT
Wednesday - SethSpeaks.net Hitter of the Day – Tyler Ladendorf, Elizabethton Twins
Wednesday - SethSpeaks.net Pitcher of the Day – Miguel Munoz, Elizabethton Twins
NOTES AND ANOTHER TRANSACTION
· As I posted earlier on Wednesday, the Eastern League named its All-Star teams. Five Rockcats were named All Stars.
· Twins Fix compiled a monthly review of the Twins minor league system.
Wednesday – Rochester – No Game Scheduled.
Wednesday – Game 1 - New Britain 3, Portland 1 – Game 1 was a bullpen game for the Rockcats. Frank Mata got the start and did quite well. He gave up one run on two hits over the first 3.2 innings. He walked none and struck out two. Jose Lugo got the win as he threw 2.1 hitless innings. He walked one and struck out two. Anthony Slama recorded his 16th save with a scoreless inning. Toby Gardenhire went 2-3. Brandon Roberts (10), Brian Dinkelman (19) and Erik Lis (12) each hit a double.
Wednesday – Game 2 - New Britain 3, Portland 1 – The second game had the same score and the same story. It was a bullpen game, and it was very well pitched. Yohan Pino made the start. He gave up one run on five this and a walk in four innings. He struck out six. Kyle Waldrop came in and gave up just one hit over 2.2 scoreless innings. Alex Burnett got his first save by coming in and getting the final out. Rene Tosoni went 2-3 with his 16th double. Whit Robbins singled in the first two runs. Yancarlos Ortiz gave the team a little insurance with an RBI double.
Wednesday – Ft. Myers, Lakeland – Doubleheader called due to rain. One game was postponed, the other game was cancelled.
Wednesday – Beloit 2, Cedar Rapids 8 – This was not a good game for the Snappers. Dan Berlind got the start, and the loss. He gave up four runs on five hits and three walks in 3.2 innings. Blake Martin then struck out four in 2.1 perfect innings. Thomas Wright gave up two runs (1 earned) on two hits and two walks in his inning. Michael Allen pitched a scoreless eighth inning. Bruce Pugh threw the ninth inning and gave up two runs on four hits. The Snappers managed just six hits in the game. The top four hitters (Hicks, Beresford, Santana and Lewis) combined to go 0-15 in the game. Jeff Lanning went 2-4 with his fourth double and his second stolen base. Buddy Munroe went 2-4.
Wednesday – Elizabethton 8, Bristol 3 – Tyler Ladendorf’s fast start continued with yet another strong game. In this game he was 3-5 with his third double, third home run and four RBI. Derek McCallum went 2-3 with a walk. Anderson Hidalgo was 1-2 with two walks. Miguel Munoz threw 5.2 strong innings. He gave up one run on five hits. He didn’t walk any, and struck out four. Kyle Carr allowed one hit and one walk over the next 2.1 innings. He struck out four. Winston Marquez gave up two runs on two hits and a walk in his inning.
GCL TWINS THOUGHTS
Wednesday – GCL Twins, GCL Red Sox – Doubleheader postponed by rain.