Monday, June 22, 2015

Twins Minor League Report (6/22): Miracle Barrage, Duffey Deals

Even without a scheduled game for Chattanooga, Max Kepler made headlines as he was named the Southern League player of the week. In the last week, he had consecutive four-hit games as well as a three-hit game and a two hit outing. He went 14-for-22 with four triples, six runs, four RBI and three steals

Kepler is now batting .342 with a .972 OPS including legging out 17 doubles and eight triples. He also has 12 stolen bases this season. He leads the league in batting and ranks second in triples behind former teammate Byron Buxton.

The Lookouts were off on Monday but there was other action down on the farm.
Photo: Marcus Knecht, Fort Myers Miracle (Credit: Linwood Ferguson, Captive Photons)
Rochester 3, Pawtuckett 2
Box Score
Tyler Duffey took the mound for the Red Wings and gave quite the performance. Both runs scored against him were unearned and he scattered five hits with six strikeouts and one walk. After collecting one out in the eighth, Duffey surrendered back to back hits to leave runners on the corners. He'd have to rely on the bullpen to get out of this jam.

Ryan O'Rourke and Mark Hamburger both were brought in for one batter and they each picked up huge strikeouts to keep the Red Wings lead at 3-2. AJ Achter made quick work in the ninth inning by striking out one for his 11th save.

Eric Farris lead the way offensively with two doubles and a run scored. Danny Santana continued his hot hitting ways with a double and an RBI. He's now hit safely in six straight games and nine of his last ten. Danny Ortiz and Reynaldo Rodriguez each drove in a run and Rodriguez stole his second base.

With the win, Rochester improved to three games over .500. The club has won four of their last six games and they sit two games back in the International League Wild Card Standings.

Chattanooga- Scheduled Off Day
The Lookouts are in the midst of their mid-season All-Star break. Seven members of the Lookouts were named to the 2015 Southern League North Division All-Star Team. Pitchers DJ Baxendale, Jose Berrios and Zach Jones all made the squad. Outfielders Byron Buxton and Adam Brett Walker along with infielders Jorge Polanco and Miguel Sano were scheduled to join them.

Buxton obviously won't be playing in the contest as he has been called up to the big leagues. One surprise name not on the list is Max Kepler who has been destroying the Southern League over the last few weeks. The game will be played in Montgomery, AL with a home run derby starting at 5 pm CST and the All-Star Game starting at 6:35 CST on Tuesday.

Fort Myers 10, Palm Beach 1
Box Score
Fort Myers had an offensive explosion on Monday night as they pounded out 10 runs in the first four frames. It was the first time in June that the club scored double-digits and the club went an eye-popping 10-for-19 with runners in scoring position. The Miracle won their last four games before the All-Star Break so this makes it five straight victories.

Marcus Knecht cracked three doubles with three RBI and three runs scored. Engelb Vielma collected three hits and Bryan Haar went 4-for-5. Mitch Garver, Zach Granite, and Logan Wade all had multi-hit efforts including two runs scored by Garver.

Boosted by the solid offensive output, Mat Batts was able to cruise to his second victory. He lasted seven innings and allowed one run on four hits. His eight strikeouts were the second most he's had all season. Matt Summers allowed a couple runs in the final frame but the Miracle had more than enough insurance runs.

Cedar Rapids - Scheduled Off Day
Roster Move: Kernels pitcher Miles Nordgren was optioned to Elizabethton of the Gulf Coast League. Cedar Rapids currently has 23 players on the roster.

Like the Lookouts, most of the Kernels are enjoying a few off days as part of the Midwest League All-Star break. Cedar Rapids is sending five All-Stars to the game including four pitchers. The lone position player is first baseman Trey Vavra who is secong in the MWL in hitting (.346 BA). Jared Wilson, Cam Booser, Felix Jorge, and Trevor Hildenberger were all selected to the pitching staff.

The game is being hosted by the Peoria Chiefs in Peoria, Illinois. The events will start with a home run derby at 5:30 pm and the game will follow.

GCL Twins Takes
GCL Twins 0, GCL Orioles 2
Box Score
The GCL Twins got off to a slow start to the season as the team was limited to three hits in their first game of the season. Travis Blankenhorn went 1-for-2 with a triple and a walk. Roberto Gonzalez and Tyree Davis each went 1-for-3 and Davis was able to swipe two bases. Overall, the team went 0-for-5 with runners in scoring position.

Jose Martinez took the loss after tossing five frames and allowing two earned runs on six hits. He struck out five and walked one. Miguel Gonzalez allowed two base runners in two frames without allowing a run. Dallas Gallant and Yorman Landa each pitched a perfect frame with three combined strikeouts. 

Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Tyler Duffey, Rochester Red Wings
Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Marcus Knecht, Fort Myers Miracle

Rochester @ Pawtucket (6:05 CST) – RHP Greg Peavey
Chattanooga- Southern League All-Star Game (6:35 CST)
Ft. Myers vs. Palm Beach (6:05 CST) – RHP Kohl Stewart
Cedar Rapids- Midwest League All-Star Game (7:00 CST)
Elizabethton @ Bluefield (6:05 CST) - TBA
GCL Twins @ GCL Orioles (11:00 am CST)- TBA

Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss the Monday games.

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