Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Twins Minor League Report (6/12): Double-A Debuts

With two rainouts on Tuesday, there was a duo of double headers on Wednesday night. Miguel Sano, Eddie Rosario, and Angel Morales all made their Double-A debuts. Jason Wheeler helped the Miracle to win even with a new core of players in their everyday line-up. The Kernels had a chance to clinch a playoff birth.

Earlier today I released an updated list of the top 10 prospects in the Twins organization. There was a new name at the top of the list and two other players sneaking into the top 5. Newly drafted high school pitcher Kohl Stewart is on the list but where does he rank?

Lots of members from my top ten list were in action on Wednesday. Let's see what happened down on the farm!

Rochester Red Wings (Schedule Off Day)
It's the last scheduled off day of the month for Rochester. In fact, the club will play 20 games in the last 19 days of June. The Red Wings have lost four of their last six games so the team would like to get back on track as they play four games at home over the weekend.

Rochester has a 30-36 record and the team sits eight games out of first place in the International League North. Over their last ten games, the Red Wings have gone 6-4 so things are moving the right way. The first goal is to try and sneak back closer to the .500 mark and that can start this weekend.

New Britain Rock Cats 1, Altoona Curve 7 (7 Innings-Game 1)
Box Score
The Double-A debuts for Miguel Sano, Eddie Rosario, and Angel Morales didn't exactly go as planned. New Britain's pitching staff was roughed up for seven runs in the loss. The new trio of players went 1-for-6 with a run scored and an RBI.

Sano made three plate appearances that resulted in a walk, a ground out, and a deep sac fly. Rosario had one of the team's three hits in the game and he scored the lone run. Reynaldo Rodriguez went 2-for-3 with the only extra-base hit for the Rock Cats. As a team, New Britain went 0-for-5 with runners in scoring position.

Pat Dean lost his second consecutive start and he was hit around a bit in less than six innings of work. He surrendered nine hits and five earned runs while striking out one. 62 of his 86 pitches were strikes so he was near the plate for most of the evening.

New Britain Rock Cats 1, Altoona Curve 3 (7 Innings- Game 2)
Box Score
For the second game in a row, the Rock Cats struggled to push runs across the plate. Only three players were able to collect hits and that will make it tough to score. Danny Santana went 1-for-3 and scored a run. Eddie Rosario picked up his second hit at Double-A and Sano added his second RBI on a sac fly. The team left five runners on bas and went 0-for-4 with runners in scoring position.

Trevor May started on the mound and he did his best to keep the Rock Cats in the game. He pitched into the seventh inning and allowed three runs on five hits. He struck out eight and limited his walks to three. He was out pitched on this night by former Twins minor leaguer David Bromberg. In six innings, Bromberg gave up one run on two hits and struck out 12.

The loss drops New Britain three games under .500 but the team will look to salvage the last game of the series with Altoona tomorrow.

Fort Myers Miracle 6, Daytona Cubs 3 (7 Innings- Game 1)
Box Score
Jason Wheeler continued his stretch of strong starts in the Florida State League. In the make-up of Tuesday's washed out contest, Wheeler tossed five strong innings and limited the Cubs to two runs on four hits. There was a little trouble with control as he walked five batters and struck out three. It was his sixth win of the season and he improved his record to 6-1.

Anderlin Mejia paced the new look Miracle line-up with three hits including his fifth double. Jhon Gonclaves and Stephen Wickens each added a double and two RBI. Former Gopher Mike Kvasnicka had his first multi-hit game since joining the team earlier on Monday.

Zach Jones picked up his seventh save of the season by getting the last four outs of the game. Three of the four batters he faced ended up striking out and he lowered his ERA to 1.46. Over his last ten games, Jones has only given up four hits and two earned runs.

Fort Myers Miracle 5, Daytona Cubs 4 (7 Innings- Game 2)
Box Score
Dayton made things interesting by scoring four runs in the last three innings but the Miracle were able to hang on for a nail-biting win. It was the club's 43rd victory and the team has only lost 20 games.

Some of Miguel Sano's powerful swing must have stayed at third base for Fort Myers. Stephen Wickens was playing in the position formally occupied by Sano and he hit his first home run of the season. For the game, Wickens went 2-for-4 with a couple of RBI. Aderlin Mejia and Jairo Rodriguez each had two hits and an RBI.

Matthew Summers only pitched four innings but he didn't allow a run and he struck out six. After not walking more than three batters in any of his last 10 games, Summers issued five free passes in this game. Taylor Rogers was credited with the win and Corey Williams picked up his ninth save.

Cedar Rapids Kernels 12, Quad Cities River Bandits 4
Box Score
A huge eighth inning helped the Kernels to clinch a first half playoff birth. Cedar Rapids entered the frame tied with Quad Cities but the club would see eight runs cross the plate. With their win and the River Bandits loss, the Kernels are guaranteed one of the two playoff spots for the first half.

Jose Berrios pitched six strong innings by not giving up an earned run and striking out six. There were multiple errors on behind him that meant two unearned runs ended up on his final line. Steven Gruver would pick up the win but this came after allowed two runs to score in the seventh.

Travis Harrison might of had his 15th error at third base but he continued his strong season at the plate. He went 2-for-3 with his 10th home run. Jorge Polanco collected four hits including two doubles and two RBI. Uber-prospect Byron Buxton went 3-for-6 with his 15th double and his 48th and 49th RBI.

Since the Kernels have now clinched, Buxton will probably be making his way to Fort Myers in the next week or so.

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