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  • Caleb Thielbar Promoted, Kyle Gibson Next?

    Left-handed relief pitcher Caleb Thielbar, who played in Randolph, Minnesota and pitched for the St. Paul Saints as recently as 2011, will be called up by the Minnesota Twins today. To make room on the roster, the Twins are demoting fifth starter Pedro Hernandez to Rochester. That would open up a spot for Twins starting pitching prospect Kyle Gibson to make his big league debut on Friday.

    Thielbar was signed by the Twins out of the independent Northern League in 2011 and raced through High-A and AA up to AAA-Rochester in 2012. He began this year fairly slowly, but, most recently, has had eight straight outings without an earned run. His overall numbers include more strikeouts (34) than innings pitched (26.1) and good control (just 8 BB). (For more on Thielbar, check out his "Adopt-A-Prospect" page on Twins Daily.)

    The Twins travel to Atlanta this week, a National League city, where they will be unable to use a designated hitter. American League teams often like to add a bullpen arm for such trips. With Hernandez's demotion, the Twins are shorting themselves a fifth starter until Friday, when they next need one. If that's the case, Theilbar's promotion to the big leagues could be short-lived.

    For Friday's start, the assumption is that Kyle Gibson would be first in line to join the Twins rotation. Gibson, a first-round draft choice who missed most of 2012 coming back from Tommy John surgery, has thrown two complete game shutouts in his last three outings. Gibson is also on the 40-man roster. The only other AAA starter on the 40-man is Cole DeVries, who is also just coming back from an injury. He too pitched on Sunday, so his next turn in the rotation could also fall on Friday.

    For more photos like the one above, follow @BitzyBetsy on Twitter

    Comments 22 Comments
    1. Seth Stohs's Avatar
      Seth Stohs -
      I couldn't be happier for Thielbar. I love stories like this, and another local story. He's been terrific, especially in those last 8 outings when he's gone 11.1 innings and given up just 4 hits, walked 5 and struck out 15.

      As for Friday, I think the easy pick is Gibson since it is on his scheduled pitching day, and we'll find out probably Thursday. However, with two guys able to go on the 60 Day DL, it's also very much possible that they could add Sam Deduno, PJ Walters or even Andrew Albers to the 40 man to make a couple of starts.
    1. mike wants wins's Avatar
      mike wants wins -
      I agree with Seth, we don't know it will be Gibson. And this is how a MLB team should be managing the roster, using AAA for depth as appropriate. Nice job of that.
    1. Highabove's Avatar
      Highabove -
      Two years ago, I was watching Thielbar at Midway Stadium, quite a story.
      Mark Hamburger is another live arm who is on the Saints roster this year.
      I hope the Twins are taking a close look.
    1. Twins Daily Admin's Avatar
      Twins Daily Admin -
      Quote Originally Posted by Seth Stohs View Post
      I couldn't be happier for Thielbar. I love stories like this, and another local story. He's been terrific, especially in those last 8 outings when he's gone 11.1 innings and given up just 4 hits, walked 5 and struck out 15.

      As for Friday, I think the easy pick is Gibson since it is on his scheduled pitching day, and we'll find out probably Thursday. However, with two guys able to go on the 60 Day DL, it's also very much possible that they could add Sam Deduno, PJ Walters or even Andrew Albers to the 40 man to make a couple of starts.
      What kind of odds would you need to get to bet $20 that it won't be Gibson?
    1. StormJH1's Avatar
      StormJH1 -
      I totally admit I hadn't heard of Thielbar until just now, but having looked up his track record in the minors, it looks excellent. You could argue that he's been a bit old for each level of the minors he's been at, but a lefty with decent control that strikes out 9.0 K/9 (or better) in the minors...what's not to like?

      Anyone (Seth?) know what his stuff is like? Decent velocity? Does he have a second pitch he can miss bats with?
    1. joeboo_22's Avatar
      joeboo_22 -
      I believe he has a low 90's fast ball with a very good curve ball
    1. cmathewson's Avatar
      cmathewson -
      Quote Originally Posted by Seth Stohs View Post
      I couldn't be happier for Thielbar. I love stories like this, and another local story. He's been terrific, especially in those last 8 outings when he's gone 11.1 innings and given up just 4 hits, walked 5 and struck out 15.

      As for Friday, I think the easy pick is Gibson since it is on his scheduled pitching day, and we'll find out probably Thursday. However, with two guys able to go on the 60 Day DL, it's also very much possible that they could add Sam Deduno, PJ Walters or even Andrew Albers to the 40 man to make a couple of starts.
      Odds are, it's Gibson because of the 40-man issue. If they had found some damage in Wood's shoulder, maybe. But the MRI came in clean. So they probably don't want to 60-day DL him.
    1. nicksaviking's Avatar
      nicksaviking -
      From the Fargo Forum:

      Twins call up former SDSU pitcher Thielbar | INFORUM | Fargo, ND

      How can this team seriously justify demoting Pedro Martinez!!!
    1. jay's Avatar
      jay -
      Quote Originally Posted by cmathewson View Post
      Odds are, it's Gibson because of the 40-man issue. If they had found some damage in Wood's shoulder, maybe. But the MRI came in clean. So they probably don't want to 60-day DL him.
      He's already been on the DL for the entire season, so he's already filled up most of the 60 days. I don't see much harm in move if they need a roster spot. The only downside would be the need to get him back on the 40-man to call him up.
    1. Seth Stohs's Avatar
      Seth Stohs -
      Someone told me that Thielbar is reminiscent delivery-wise to Perkins. He's a low-90s guy with a couple of pitches. He's a little wild at times. I think he's similar to Duensing, which I think any team would be happy to take. Can't make too much out of whatever he shows over these three or four days, but it's exciting. He came back aggressive. I talked to him at Twins Fest, and I'll have to check my transcription. Great story!
    1. mike wants wins's Avatar
      mike wants wins -
      Congrats to Thielbar, what a great story. Super thrilled for him, really. It's great.
    1. TheLeviathan's Avatar
      TheLeviathan -
      Playoffs baby.
    1. jokin's Avatar
      jokin -
      Quote Originally Posted by admin View Post
      What kind of odds would you need to get to bet $20 that it won't be Gibson?
      My money is on Walters.....pitched well on Saturday night....
    1. YourHouseIsMyHouse's Avatar
      YourHouseIsMyHouse -
      Could be Gibson, but he hasn't pitched consistently well.
    1. Brodin4Calder's Avatar
      Brodin4Calder -
      Hopefully its Gibson...
    1. crarko's Avatar
      crarko -
      Looking at their stat lines in Rochester, Gibson and Walters are pretty close so far. Both have gone deep in games, which is what the Twins staff so desperately needs.

      I'm hoping Gibson but guessing Walters.
    1. Oldgoat_MN's Avatar
      Oldgoat_MN -
      How much longer would Gibson have to stay in AAA for the Twins to have another year of control?

      Gotta be so close now that they would wait if the time hasn't already passed.
    1. Monkeypaws's Avatar
      Monkeypaws -
      I like the fact that the Twins pay attention to their own back-yard. Minnesota isn't a baseball hot-bed, but if you corner this market, you might get a h-o-f'er or two. Minnesota ball players seem to roost as well, although toward the end of hallowed careers.

      Still, Winfield, Molitor, Morris, Mauer, Steinbach, perhaps Perkins, that's a pretty nice welcome mat to roll out to Minnesota prospects.
    1. Thrylos's Avatar
      Thrylos -
      They do need a starter for the next Hernandez start. Gibson is on the exact schedule. I really do not see anyone else coming up...
    1. goulik's Avatar
      goulik -
      One source I found said Thielbar was hitting 92 MPH on his fast ball last year. He throws primarily a fast ball/ curve combo and has been working on a change up
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