While the Twins (and particularly Josh Willingham) were creating fireworks while completing a sweep of the White Sox, there were entirely different fireworks that resulted in the ejection of a top Twins prospect (while he was in his home run trot) and his manager, an ex-Twin.
There were also several terrific performances by PJ Walters, Nate Hanson, Miguel Munoz and Lance Ray. Drew Leachman celebrated his birthday quite well on the field. Tyler Duffey was back on the mound on Sunday. But the story of the day was in Palm Beach at a High A game.
Game 1 - Rochester Red Wings 1, Pawtucket Red Sox 8
Kyle Gibson made the start for the Red Wings. His line shows that he gave up three runs on three hits and four walks in five innings. However, through five innings, he had not allowed a run. Unfortunately, when he came out for the sixth frame, he gave up a lead-off walk followed by back-to-back singles to load the bases before being replaced by Luis Perdomo. Perdomo gave up a walk, a single and a double before he was replaced by Tyler Robertson. Robertson walked two that half-inning, one intentionally, but allowed only one inherited runner to score on a ground out before inducing an inning-ending double play. Suddenly, the Wings were down by a score of 5-1.
Unfortunately, things weren’t much better for the Red Wings in the seventh inning. Robertson walked the first three batters to load the bases before Dan Turpen replaced him. Three more runs scored making it 8-1.
The Red Wings managed just four hits. Clete Thomas was 1-2 with two walks.
Game 2 - Rochester Red Wings 2, Pawtucket Red Sox 0
The story of the second game of the double-header was the right arm of PJ Walters. He threw a complete game shutout, allowing two hits and one walk. He struck out five to improve to 1-2 on the season.
The Red Wings had six hits in the game. Chris Colabello doubled for the third time. Ray Olmedo hit a 2-run double which produced all the scoring for the Wings in this game.
The Red Wings improved to 5-12 with the split on Sunday.
New Britain Rock Cats 7, Portland Sea Dogs 8
BJ Hermsen was back on the mound in a regular season game for the first time this year. Hermsen, the Minor League starting pitcher of the year in 2012, went to big league spring training for the first time this spring. After being optioned out, he strained an intercostal muscle in his rib cage and has been rehabbing since. Hermsen went 4.2 innings and gave up five runs on six hits and two walks. He struck out three. Bobby Lanigan came on in relief and gave up three runs (2 earned) on four hits and a walk in 0.2 innings. Edgar Ibarra struck out three in 1.2 scoreless innings. Michael Tonkin had a quiet eighth frame.
Nate Hanson had a big day with the bat. The Eden Prairie High School grad and former Golden Gopher went 4-5 with a double and two RBI. Josmil Pinto went 2-3 with two walks. Dan Rohlfing went 1-3 with two walks.
The Rock Cats fell to 8-9 on the season.
Ft. Myers Miracle 5, Palm Beach Cardinals 6 (10 innings)
This game was delayed for about two hours because of rain, and it then went to extra innings. There was drama throughout most of this game. Unfortunately, the Miracle lost 6-5 in ten innings on a walk-off home run.
The drama started in the fifth inning. Reliever Brandon Creath was in the game, and Miguel Sano came to the plate. The first pitch barely missed Sano’s head. Doug Mientkiewicz came out and told the home plate umpire that Creath should be ejected. The history? Five days earlier, in his most recent appearance, Creath gave up a long grand slam to Sano.
Creath stayed in this game, and on a 3-1 pitch, Sano launched a very, very long home run, his sixth of the year. He walked a few steps down the line and then, incited by the Cardinals dugout, started yelling at them as he ran down the line. At that point, the home plate umpire ejected Sano. Mientkiewicz came out and argued. He was ejected. So was left fielder Stephen Wickens.
There was plenty of offense for the Miracle. Unfortunately, they left 15 runners on the base paths. Lance Ray went 3-5 with his fourth double. Kyle Knudson went 2-3 with two walks and his second home run. Michael Gonzales went 2-5 with a walk. AJ Pettersen extended his hitting streak to six games with a 2-5 day.
Jason Wheeler started and gave up five runs on six hits in four innings. He walked two and struck out two. The bullpen kept the game close. Miguel Munoz gave up three hits in three scoreless innings. Corey Williams gave up two hits in his two scoreless innings. However, in the tenth inning, Nelvin Fuentes came on. He threw one pitch and it was deposited over the fence in left field to end the game.
The Miracle fell to 14-3 on the season.
photo by Jim Crikket
Cedar Rapids Kernels 3, Burlington Bees 2
The Kernels got terrific pitching and a big hit off the bat of Niko Goodrum to get this tough win.
Tyler Duffey made his third straight Sunday start. In this game, he pitched seven innings and gave up two runs on four hits and a walk, with six strikeouts. He improved to 2-1. David Hurlbut came out of the bullpen and recorded his first save. He gave up just one hit and struck out two in the final two innings.
After having four hits on Saturday, Drew Leachman celebrated his birthday on Sunday with three more hits. He was 3-3 with a triple and a sacrifice fly. Travis Harrison was 2-4 with his seventh double. Jorge Polanco had a double, his fourth. Byron Buxton was 1-3 with two walks. He stole his sixth base, but he was also caught stealing for the fourth time. Niko Goodrum had just one hit on the day, but it was a two-run single in the seventh that gave the Kernels the 3-2 lead.
The Snappers are now 11-5 on the season.
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