Friday, June 7, 2013

Twins Minor League Report (6/7): Albers Twirls Gem

It's Day 2 of Major League Baseball's Rule 4 Draft and the Twins continued to add some new talent to an already strong organization. A variety of pitchers and one college catcher highlight the Twins second day of making picks.

Those players haven't signed yet but there are plenty of other players already in the system and on the field on Friday night. Let's see how the organization fared under the Friday Night Lights.
Rochester Red Wings 11, Gwinnett Braves 0
Box Score
Seven runs in the first inning were enough for the Red Wings to jump all over the Braves. Twelve men came to the plate in that frame and Jeff Clement provided one of the biggest hits with a 3-run home run.  Doug Bernier and Eric Fryer had doubles to keep the runners moving around the bases. Poor Eric Farris would account for the first and the last out of the inning.

Clement would end up putting together quite the game. He ended the night 4-for-4 with two home runs and four RBI. Deibinson Romero was 2-for-4 with a home run and three runs scored. The team went 5-for-12 with runners in scoring position as the club pounded out 13 hits.

Andrew Albers was terrific on the mound. He tossed a complete game shutout to improve his record to 4-2 on the season. He allowed six hits and struck out seven without any walks. Albers hasn't lost a game since May 11th and he has picked up the win in his last three decisions. His ERA dropped almost half a point from 3.53 to 3.06 with this start.

It was the third series win of the season for the Red Wings. The club has won 11 of their last 16 games. It was also the first road series win over a Braves Triple-A affiliate since 1995. Rochester returns home for an 8-game, 9-day homestand beginning on Saturday night.

New Britain Rock Cats --, Bowie Bay Sox -- (Postponed--Rain)
Tropical Storm Andrea not only impacted the Twins game on Friday, it also impacted the Rock Cats game. These two clubs will try and play two games on Saturday but one has to wonder if weather will be a factor for the second day in a row.

So far this month, New Britain has won four of their first five games. Tom Stuifbergen is scheduled to make his start at the Double-A level, if the clubs can ever get back on the field. In Fort Myers, Stuifbergen was 2-3 with a 3.65 ERA with 28 strikeouts and two walks.

Fort Myers Miracle 5, Bradenton Marauders 6 (10 innings)
Box Score
The bullpen for the Miracle gave up three runs over the last three innings to see a victory slip away. Corey Williams and Zach Jones were the men held responsible for these runs as the Miracle suffered only their 18 loss of the season. Jones gave up a walk-off home run in the bottom of the tenth.

Matthew Summers started for Fort Myers and tossed five innings before being removed. He gave up three runs but only one of them was earned as Eddie Rosario and Kennys Vargas had errors. Summers struck out eight batters but he needed 85 pitches to get through five frames.

Vargas tried to make up for his error in the field by going 2-for-4 with his 12th home run of the year. With the 2-run home run, he took over the league lead for RBI. Rosario also hit a long ball but it was his only hit in five trips to the plate. Levi Michael had two hits and his sixth stolen base.

The Miracle return home with a chance to clinch the Florida State League South Division first half championship on Saturday. It could be a big night tomorrow so stay tuned.

Cedar Rapids Kernels 1, Quad Cities River Bandits 6
Box Score
The Kernels got on the board first in this game by plating a run in the bottom of the first. Cedar Rapids wouldn't cross the plate again and the River Bandits would walk away with the victory and a series win. It was only the ninth home loss of the year for the Kernels.

There wasn't a lot of exciting action on the offensive side of the ball. Dalton Hicks went 1-for-3 with his 20th double of the year and his 51st RBI. No other Kernels were able to get an extra-base hit. In fact, the club only put together four hits in the game. Byron Buxton went 0-for-4 with a strike out.

Christian Powell, a 2012 eighth round pick, made his first start in the Twins organization. Things didn't go exactly as planned for Powell. He gave up six runs on eight hits with five strike outs and one walk. The Kernels bullpen wouldn't give up a run after Powell exited the game but the offense sure didn't help them out.

Cedar Rapids will get a fresh start on Saturday when Kane County comes to town. The Kernels sit three games ahead of the Beloit Snappers for first place in the Midwest League Western Division. The club needs to keep winning to become the first half champions.

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