Francisco Liriano struck out 15 batters in eight innings for the Twins on Friday night, and he got a loss. The talented left-hander was pitching with his form from 2006. Unfortunately, he also had the fourth inning. It started with a single by Jemile Weeks. One out later, Denard Span dropped a fly ball. Liriano then issued a walk. With the bases loaded, Liriano served up a pitch that Johnny Gomes knocked for a grand slam. Outside of the one inning, Liriano was dominant. Josh Willingham homered twice and drove in all three runs but it wasn’t enough as the Twins lost 6-3. Willingham now has 21 home runs. Joe Mauer and Denard Span were each 2-4.
Friday afternoon was the deadline for 2012 draft picks to sign. In the end, the Twins signed 27 of their 43 draft picks, including their first 11 picks.
With that, here is a look at the Twins minor league scores and highlights from the Friday the 13th games in the system. Kyle Gibson was back on the mound in the GCL. How did he do? Which Twins pitcher carried a no-hitter into the late innings? Did Liam Hendriks continue his IL dominance? Which five hitters had three hits on Friday?
ROCHESTER 7, TOLEDO 3
Liam Hendriks continued his mastery of the International League. In seven innings, he gave up two runs on three hits. He walked none and struck out five. He improved to 7-0 with a 1.79 ERA. Kyle Waldrop got five outs and gave up one run on two hits and two walks. Luis Perdomo picked up his 5th
save by recording the final out.
JR Towles went 2-3 with his first home run of the season. Sean Burroughs was 2-4 with his 11th
doubles. Pedro Florimon and Matt Carson were each 2-5. Danny Valencia had an RBI double.
NEW BRITAIN 9, TRENTON 2
The Rock Cat bats came out in this game. All nine hitters had at least one hit. Deibinson Romero went 3-5 with his 12th
double. Oswaldo Arcia then went 3-5 with two RBI. He is now hitting .316 in New Britain. He also threw out a base runner at home. Evan Bigley went 2-4 with a walk and his 12th
homer. Nate Hanson was 2-4 with his 10th
double. James Beresford went 2-4 with his sixth double. Aaron Hicks was 1-3 with two walks.
Shairon Martis started and gave up one run on six hits over seven innings. He walked two and struck out two. Daniel Turpen pitched a scoreless inning, walking one batter. Dakota Watts came in for the 9th
and gave up one run on two hits and a walk.
FT. MYERS 3, CLEARWATER 4
Pat Dean had one of the best performances in the organization this season. The left-hander from Boston College had a no-hitter through the first six innings. He then gave up two runs on four hits in the seventh inning when he recorded two outs. He walked two and struck out four in the game. Miguel Munoz went got the final four outs. Unfortunately, he gave up a two-run home run in the 8th
inning to a rehabbing Laynce Nix that proved to be the game-winner.
Josmil Pinto went 3-4 with his 15th
double. Andy Leer went 3-4. Danny Rams was 2-4 with two RBI including an RBI single in the top of the 8th
that gave the Miracle a 3-2 lead.
Mike Nesseth recorded the save for Clearwater. The 6-5, 225 pound, 24 year old right-hander drafted out of the University of Nebraska hails from Windom, MN.
BELOIT 8, FT. WAYNE 3
The Snappers completed a series in Ft. Wayne, Indiana, with an 8-3 win. Matt Summers won for the 9th
time. The right-hander went six innings and gave up two runs on nine hits. He walked one and struck out four. Steve Evans came in and gave up a run on two hits in two innings. He walked one and struck out three and walked none. Steve Gruver pitched a scoreless ninth frame.
Drew Leachman led the offense with a 3-5 day. Wang-Wei Lin walked three times. Stephen Wickens went 2-3 with two RBI. Miguel Sano was 1-3 and walked two times.
The Snappers are in the western division of the Midwest League and are playing games now in the Eastern Division. Way in the Eastern Division. Following the game, the Snappers took the bus further east. At 3 a.m., they drove through Cleveland and soon arrived at their new destination. They will now play three games against Lake County whose home is in Eastlake, Ohio. Lake County is the smallest of Ohio’s 88 counties, but it ranks 11th
ELIZABETHTON 2, GREENEVILLE 3 (10 innings)
Many believe that professional baseball, even in the minor leagues, is a glamorous life. Tell that to the members of the Elizabethton Twins who sat through a long rain delay and got home at about 2:30 a.m. The game was delayed at the start and didn’t start until almost 10:00. Angel Mata started and gave up one run on one hit and four walks in three innings. There was another long delay around midnight. When the game resumed, Josh Burris was on the mound. He dropped his ERA to 0.56 with two innings of work. He gave up an unearned run on two hits and a walk. Christian Powell then struck out three in two scoreless innings. DJ Baxendale struck out five in two perfect innings. Kaleb Merck came in to start the bottom of the 10th
frame. He got two outs in the inning, but gave up the winning run on two hits.
Max Kepler got one base four times. He had a single, two walks and was also hit by a pitch. Candido Pimentel was 3-5. He also stole his seventh base.
GCL TWINS 4, GCL RAYS 1
Kyle Gibson was back on the mound on Friday morning, pitching in a game for just the second time since late last July. On this day, he gave up one run on two hits and a walk. He hit a batter as well. One of the hits was a Nevin Ashley home run. (Ashley is a AAA catcher for a Rays, a very good prospect in AAA.) He recorded just two outs before being removed from the game due to the predetermined pitch count limitation. Asked how his arm felt after the outing, Gibson responded to Twins Daily by saying he “felt good!” Regarding his performance, he said, “(I) threw some good pitches and bad one, but overall felt good.” That is all part of the process .
Matthew Tomshaw, who is also rehabbing in Ft. Myers. He had not pitched in a game since May 18th
with the Beloit Snappers. The left-hander gave up just two hits over two scoreless innings. Randy Rosario came in and struckout four batters in 4.1 perfect innings. Gonzalo Sanudo recorded his second save with two perfect innings.
Joel Licon hit his fifth and sixth doubles. John Murphy and Kelly Cross each doubled. Will Hurt finally got his first professional hit. The middle infielder drafted in June started the year 0-25, but he was 1-4 in this game and now at least has a batting average (.034).
Players of the Day for Friday, July 13, 2012
Pitcher of the Day – Pat Dean
Hitter of the Day – Deibinson Romero
A Look Ahead – Saturday, July 14, 2012 Schedule
Rochester vs Toledo – RHP Nick Blackburn
New Britain vs Trenton – LHP Blake Martin
Ft. Myers @ Clearwater – LHP Cole Nelson
Beloit @ Lake County – LHP David Hurlbut
Elizabethton vs Bluefield – TBD
GCL Twins @ GCL Red Sox – TBD
If you have any questions or comments on the Twins minor league system, players, teams, etc., leave them in the Comments and I’ll try to answer them!