Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Twins Minor League Report (5/24): Jay Sets Career Mark

Baseball's rich history is something that draws fans to the game. Records are meant to be set and records are meant to be broken. That's all part of the game.

There were a few records on the line as Tuesday's action got underway. Randy LeBlanc entered his start with the Kernels in the midst of an impressive scoreless streak. He hadn't allowed a run in 28 innings before taking the mound tonight. Tyler Jay has also been improving for Fort Myers and he would do something that he had never done before.

Would LeBlanc's streak continue? What kind of record could Jay set? Read on to find out.
Photo Credit: Linwood Ferguson-Captive Photons
RED WINGS REPORT
Rochester 3, Indianapolis 4
Roster Moves: Left-handed pitcher Sean Burnett was signed by Minnesota and assigned to Rochester. Infielder Jorge Polanco was optioned to Rochester. Outfielder Max Kepler and left-handed pitcher Dan Runzler were placed on the disabled list. Kepler has a left groin strain and Runzler has a right oblique strain.

Rochester tried to rally late in this game but they didn't have enough steam left to get it done. Byron Buxton had given the Wings an early 1-0 lead with his fourth home run of the season. Kennys Vargas walked twice in two appearances and also cranked his seventh home run. His 26 walks were tied with Richie Shaffer for the league lead coming into play on Tuesday. Jorge Polanco collected his fourth triple and trails Max Kepler by two for the league lead. 

Andrew Albers was tagged for three runs on four hits with three strikeouts and three walks. It was his first loss since rejoining the Red Wings. Marcus Walden allowed one earned run on two hits. Sean Burnett made his Rochester debut and allowed one base runner on a walk while striking out one. 

The Red Wings drop to 25-20 with the loss and it was only the team's second loss in their last seven contests. Rochester is a half game back in the International League North Division as Scranton/WB has played one more game than the Wings and got a win. 

MIRACLE MATTERS
Ft. Myers 1, Palm Beach 3
Fort Myers took an early 1-0 in the first inning and they managed to do this without getting a hit. Logan Wade started the frame with a walk before advancing to second on a deep fly-out. The next batter was Nick Gordon and he grounded to the shortstop who bobbled the ball and Wade was waved around to score the team's only run. Chris Paul went 3-for-5 and Wade reached base three times including the team's only extra-base hit, a double. 

Tyler Jay struck out a career-high eight batters as the Miracle combined to collect a season high 14 strikeouts. Jay went five frames and scattered six hits on his way to allowing a pair of earned runs. Brandon Peterson allowed one run but struck out four in two innings. Yorman Landa and Todd Van Steensel finished the final two frames by putting zeros on the board. 

The Miracle dropped to 24-22 after leaving 11 men on base and going 0-for-9 with runners in scoring position. Fort Myers has struggled over the last week as they have lost six of their last eight games. Even with the recent struggles, the Florida State League South is a mess as every team is within three games of first place.  

KERNELS NUGGETS
Cedar Rapids 4, Burlington 1 
Box Score
The streak was bound to end but Randy LeBlanc did his best to stretch it as far as the Bees would allow it to go. LeBlanc saw his scoreless streak stretched to 34 innings before the Bees pushed across a run. He finished the night by allowing one run in seven innings with three strikeouts. He's the first Midwest League pitcher to reach six wins. Anthony McIver earned his first save, a two inning version, with five strikeouts. 

Brian Olson and Nelson Molina both had multi-hit nights with each player collecting a double. The Kernels had five doubles on the night with Luis Arraez, Daniel Kihle, and Sean Miller collecting the other three. Monday's walk-off hero Zander Wiel went 1-for-3 while Jermaine Palacios hit his first triple of the season. 

Cedar Rapids improves to eight games above .500 with the win as they have a two game edge on the Clinton LumberKings for the top spot in the Midwest League Western Division. The Kernels have won six of their last seven games.

TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY
Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day- Randy LeBlanc, Cedar Rapids Kernels 
Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day- Kennys Vargas, Rochester Red Wings

WEDNESDAY'S PROBABLE STARTERS
Rochester vs. Indianapolis (6:05 CST)- LHP Jason Wheeler (2-1, 1.65 ERA)
Chattanooga vs. Tenessee (6:15 CST)- RHP D.J. Baxendale (3-5, 3.11 ERA)
Fort Myers vs. Palm Beach (6:05 CST)- RHP Keaton Steele (1-4, 4.31 ERA)
Cedar Rapids @ Burlington (6:30 CST)- LHP Sam Clay (3-1, 1.10 ERA)

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

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