• A Very Early Look at the 2014 Rochester Red Wings

    It's been just four days since the Red Wings lost game five of their playoff series against the Pawtucket Red Sox, 3-0. Immediately after the game the Minnesota Twins selected contracts of seven Rochester players, which started me thinking about what the Red Wings could look like in 2014.

    While there will be free agent signings and trades will take place, it will be interesting to see exactly what the Rochester Red Wings are going to look like next season, and see if they’ll be able to build off of a successful 2013 season.

    Catcher – Josmil Pinto

    2013 Minor League Stats (AA New Britain/AAA Rochester)

    126 G - .309 BA, 141 H, 32 2B, 15 HR, 74 RBI, 66 BB, 83 SO.

    As I write this Josmil Pinto is batting .500 with the Twins (13-26) with one home run and four RBI’s. However he played just 19 games with the Rochester Red Wings after spending the majority of the season with Double-A New Britain. While there is little doubt in my mind that Pinto will be with the Twins next season, on opening day he should be in Rochester.

    First Base – Chris Colabello

    2013 Minor League Stats (AAA Rochester)

    89 G - .352 BA, 119 H, 25 2B, 24 HR, 76 RBI, 43 BB, 89 SO.

    Chris Colabello’s first season in AAA was definitely one to remember. Not only did he put up the numbers that you see above, he also won the IL MVP award as well as the IL Rookie of the Year award as well. The Twins have invested two years in the 29 year old slugger, and I cannot see them giving up on him after the year he had for the Red Wings in 2013.

    Second Base – Eddie Rosario

    2013 Minor League Stats (A+ Fort Myers/AA New Britain)

    122 G - .302 BA, 150 H, 2 2B, 10 HR, 73 RBI, 38 BB, 96 SO, 10 SB, 10 CS.

    There’s a slight chance, in my opinion, that Rosario starts the year in AA again next season, but I’m optimistic that he’ll make the jump and start the year in Rochester. While there isn’t an overwhelming amount of home run power in his bat there is a good combination of speed and power to make him a dangerous batter hitting either second or sixth in the lineup.

    Shortstop – Danny Santana

    2013 Minor League Stats (AA New Britain)

    131 G - .297 BA, 160 H, 22 2B, 10 3B, 2 HR, 45 RBI, 24 BB, 94 SO, 30 SB, 13 CS.
    Of all of the prospects that the Twins have in their system Danny Santana may be the one most suited to bat leadoff in the major leagues. With his ability to bat near .300, stealing 30 bases and striking out fewer than 100 times this year there’s a lot to like. The only downside to Santana really is his lack of walks. In 539 at bats, he drew just 24 walks, which resulted in an OBP of .333; Santana could be an Elvis Andrus type player by the time he reaches Minnesota.

    Third Base – Miguel Sano

    2013 Minor League Stats (A+ Fort Myers/AA New Britain)


    123 G - .280 BA, 123 H, 30 2B, 35 HR, 103 RBI, 65 BB, 142 SO, 11 SB, 3 CS.

    Many people think that Sano could start the season in Minnesota coming out of spring training in 2014, but after what happened with Aaron Hicks that probably will not be the case. There is no disputing Sano’s power, it’s real and it’s spectacular (Seinfeld Reference… anyone?), but hitting just .236 in 67 games in New Britain is a reason to give him more time in the minors.

    Outfield - Dan Rohlfing

    2013 Minor League Stats (AA New Britain/AAA Rochester)


    112 G - .267 BA, 100 H, 15 2B, 3 HR, 42 RBI, 48 BB, 96 SO.

    Dan Rohlfing is one of the players the Twins organization loves, he has the ability to catch, play first base, and outfield. While there’s not a lot of major league upside for Rohlfing, in my opinion, there’s definitely an opportunity for him to make an impact with the Red Wings and he will potentially see a lot of at-bats with his multi-position availability.

    Outfield – Aaron Hicks

    2013 Minor League Stats (AAA Rochester)


    22 G - .222 BA, 16 H, 4 2B, 0 HR, 5 RBI, 10 BB, 21 SO, 1 SB, 0 CS

    This may be the craziest prediction in this article, but in my opinion and from what the numbers show, it might not be a bad idea to give him a couple months in Rochester. There was talk about his hustle and his splits vs. LHP and RHP were not very good (.385 vs. LHP, .186 vs. RHP). With Hicks being just 24 years old his career is far from over and unless the Twins make some major off-season moves the likelihood of them contending in 2014 is not high.

    Outfield – Chris Parmelee

    2013 Minor League Stats (AAA Rochester)


    45 G - .231 BA, 40 H, 13 2B, 3 HR, 22 RBI, 22 BB, 32 SO.

    Chris Parmelee is the other prediction that could be a little shaky for 2014. Like Hicks he has major league experience and the Twins want to know for sure what they have with him. There is one other similarity between Hicks and Parmelee: neither one of them did very well during his time in Rochester. Whether it’s motivation or something else, Parmelee hit just .193 in August, with 1 HR in 114 at- bats. Maybe I’m pulling the plug a little early, but it seems like he’s either a fourth outfielder or the dreaded “Organizational Depth” type of player.

    Designated Hitter – James Beresford

    2013 Minor League Stats (AA New Britain/AAA Rochester)


    103 G – .306 BA, 109 H, 12 2B, 0 HR, 40 RBI, 30 BB, 51 SO, 10 SB, 2 CS.

    James Beresford was one of the more consistent hitters in the Red Wings lineup down the stretch and was a big reason why they made the playoffs in 2013. There was a bit of a steep learning curve when he was first promoted in June where he batted just .233. However in July Beresford hit .351 in 18 games and then followed that up with a .303 average in 24 games in August. While Rosario is the better prospect without a doubt, having Beresford’s bat in the lineup makes the Red Wings from top to bottom extremely dangerous.

    2014 Opening Day Starting Lineup

    SS – Danny Santana
    2B – Eddie Rosario
    3B - Miguel Sano
    1B – Chris Colabello
    C – Josmil Pinto
    OF – Aaron Hicks
    OF – Chris Parmelee
    DH – James Beresford
    OF – Dan Rohlfing


    Rochester Red Wings Rotation

    Alex Meyer

    2013 Minor League Stats (GCL Twins/AA New Britain)


    16 GS – 4-3, 2.99 ERA, 78.1 IP, 32 BB, 100 SO

    After missing almost two months this season due to injury, Alex Meyer was impressive in his last two August starts for New Britain, pitching nine shutout innings and striking out 11 batters while walking just two. While Meyer may not be the opening day starter for the Rochester Red Wings in 2014, after all Kyle Gibson was the #2 starter this season, his starts will be watched closely by GM Terry Ryan and Twins fans everywhere.


    Trevor May

    2013 Minor League Stats (AA New Britain)


    27 GS – 9-9, 4.51 ERA, 151.2 IP, 67 BB, 159 SO

    After spending the entire regular season with the New Britain Rock Cats, Trevor May has to prove what he’s able to do at the next level. After being traded to Minnesota in the off-season in 2012, May spent his second full season in the Eastern League and the numbers were slightly better in 2013 than they were in 2012. It’ll be interesting to see if May is able to have a strong 2014 season in Rochester and have his name added to the list of September call-ups.

    Pat Dean

    2013 Minor League Stats (AA New Britain/AAA Rochester)


    28 GS – 9-13, 4.04 ERA, 165 IP, 22 BB, 83 SO.

    Pat Dean only made six starts in Rochester this season, but there was a substantial difference between what he did in Double- A versus Triple-A. Dean went 6-11 in N.B. with a 4.68 ERA, but was an impressive 3-2 in Rochester with a 2.03 ERA. It’s safe to assume that he will perform somewhere in the middle but he averaged almost six innings per start and will no doubt be a staple in the Wings rotation.

    Logan Darnell

    2013 Minor League Stats (AA New Britain/AAA Rochester)


    26 GS – 10-10, 3.22 ERA, 153.2 IP, 45 BB, 120 SO

    Logan Darnell’s season went in the opposite direction of Pat Dean’s in the sense that he was outstanding with in Double-A and had some trouble when he was called up to the Red Wings. With the Rock Cats, Darnell was 6-6 with a 2.61 ERA. When he was in Rochester he was 4-4 with a 4.26 ERA. There were starts where Darnell showed that he has some very good stuff and could make a big impact next season.


    Pedro Hernandez

    2013 Minor League Stats (GCL Twins/AA New Britain/AAA Rochester)


    10 GS – 3-3, 3.66 ERA, 64 IP, 15 BB, 45 SO

    This is one of the guys that I just don’t know where he will end up next season. Hernandez did not overwhelm while in Rochester this year, going 2-2 with a 4.50 ERA in seven starts, but it was a small sample size. He’s not a power pitcher, won’t strike out a lot of batters, but he doesn’t give up many home runs either. Control is the key to his success. I thought that Pedro would be an impact player last season for the Red Wings, so why not try again for next season.
    This article was originally published in blog: A Very Early Look at the 2014 Rochester Red Wings started by Christopher Fee
    Comments 25 Comments
    1. Oldgoat_MN's Avatar
      Oldgoat_MN -
      No question Hicks will be in AAA to start next year. Hopefully he'll follow his usual pattern of performing excellent in his second year at a level.

      Interesting observation about Santana. Unfortunately his .333 OBP this year was the best he's ever had, but maybe you're right. He has been getting better each of the last 3 years.

      Wondering a little bit who is playing 1B for the Twins, given you have Colabello & Parmelee in AAA.

      Good thread. It's never too early!
    1. tju22's Avatar
      tju22 -
      Interesting thought IMO on Sano. Everyone has talked about the low avg at AA and that he hadnt completely figured it out, but I looked at his BABIP and it sat at .265. If he had an avg BABIP of .300 which is well below what he's shown in the minors, 5 more hits would've fallen in and his line at AA would have finished at 258/366/593 assuming they were all singles. Not that his .920'ish OPS wasn't still incredible, that would put him over .950 which in the age relative to league context is almost superhuman

      I'm all for sending him to AAA until the Super 2 deadline passes cause we need to hang onto this kid for as long as possible. More than likely he'll force a promotion after destroying AAA for a couple months but I think he's ready.
    1. Thegrin's Avatar
      Thegrin -
      With that lineup Rochester should be an extremely good team to start the season. However, that lineup should be in shambles by the end of the season due to ML callups.
    1. glunn's Avatar
      glunn -
      Great article -- the Red Wings could be very good next year and you make some interesting points.
    1. beckmt's Avatar
      beckmt -
      Was interested to see that this projection had both Albers and Diamond in the Twins starting rotation. All I can say to that is I hope not, also was missing Hendriks, DeVires, Walters (etc). Many if not most of the above will be in the Rochester rotation. If they are all in the Twin Cities, it will mean Twins have struck out in trying to sign FA pitchers, or management feels the Twins are at least 1-2 years from being competitive. That would not be a good message to send to the fans.
    1. Zephrin's Avatar
      Zephrin -
      Quote Originally Posted by beckmt View Post
      Was interested to see that this projection had both Albers and Diamond in the Twins starting rotation. All I can say to that is I hope not, also was missing Hendriks, DeVires, Walters (etc). Many if not most of the above will be in the Rochester rotation. If they are all in the Twin Cities, it will mean Twins have struck out in trying to sign FA pitchers, or management feels the Twins are at least 1-2 years from being competitive. That would not be a good message to send to the fans.
      I think some combination of Hendricks, DeVries, Walters and Hernandez are released (not all 4, but maybe 2 of them?). I agree that both Albers and Diamond will be in the organization, though, and if both are with the Twins that is probably not a great thing. (Correa and Gibson being "locks" for the rotation and Deduno starting the season on IR)
    1. Zephrin's Avatar
      Zephrin -
      And yes, I threw up in my mouth a little calling Correa a "lock" for the rotation.
    1. big dog's Avatar
      big dog -
      Who's playing first for the Twins if Parmalee and Colabello are both Red Wings? Are you assuming the Twins sign Morneau or another free agent? That doesn't seem likely to me, but it could happen.
    1. Rosterman's Avatar
      Rosterman -
      At least there is jiggle room - Darnell and Dean could begin at New Britain. Hernandez may be better suited for the bullpen (and he or Albers will probably be a Twin). DeVries might be back.

      I see them signing a few minor league free agents to fill the DH?OF, maybe 1st base role (the other 1B prospects are all AA or below). Ftyer MAY be back as a backup catcher.

      But, yes, I think Red Wings fans could excited actually seeing Twins prospects play rather than a roster full of retreads.
    1. Waverley Wildcat's Avatar
      Waverley Wildcat -
      Santana made 32 errors this season (26 in 2012) , maybe he would be better at DH with Beresford the much better fielder at SS.
    1. Craig in MN's Avatar
      Craig in MN -
      Just to see them all listed out, here are the Twins starters they control that aren't on that list:

      Correia
      Gibson
      Deduno
      Diamond
      Worley
      Hendriks
      Albers
      Walters
      Devries

      That's 9 guys. I could see 2 or 3 of those guys being released, but I expect the Twins to sign another starter too. That leaves 2 or 3 extra guys. I'd put Hernandez in the bullpen, but they still need to clear space. It's too bad none of them would be worth much in a trade to clear some space.


      I think that Parmalee is out of options, so there's a fair chance that he never has a chance to play in Rochester next year. I'd say a Wilkin Ramirez type would be more likely to get that playing time.
    1. Winston Smith's Avatar
      Winston Smith -
      Quote Originally Posted by big dog View Post
      Who's playing first for the Twins if Parmalee and Colabello are both Red Wings? Are you assuming the Twins sign Morneau or another free agent? That doesn't seem likely to me, but it could happen.
      Mauer should play about 150 games at first next year.
      Reasons why:
      1. He is taking longer than expected to recover.
      2. Spending any time catching will increase his chances of getting another foul ball related concussion.
      3. Another concussion could end his time as a productive player while still eating up 1/3 of the payroll for the next 5 yrs.
      4. My hope is the Twins brass isn't so stupid as to take that chance!
    1. Seth Stohs's Avatar
      Seth Stohs -
      Parmelee will be out of options, so he would have to clear waivers to go back to Rochester (Which is possible). I'm a big Beresford fan, but he should not be a DH, even with his solid Batting average. It'd be interesting to see the depth on this roster. Rohlfing would be the backup catcher too, so there would need to be a couple of outfielders and a couple of infielders.

      I would anticipate Alex Meyer getting a month in New Britain to start next season, but he could move up quickly.
    1. mike wants wins's Avatar
      mike wants wins -
      Quote Originally Posted by Waverley Wildcat View Post
      Santana made 32 errors this season (26 in 2012) , maybe he would be better at DH with Beresford the much better fielder at SS.
      Santana's shot at being in the majors, and the Twins' at fixing things, is for him to be a SS, not a full time DH. He should be the SS next year in Rochester.....
    1. diehardtwinsfan's Avatar
      diehardtwinsfan -
      Parmelee is in MN next year as the starting 1B. I wouldn't be surprised at all if Sano started in AA, though I think they will be aggressive with him and put him in Rochester.

      Not sure I'd DH Beresford. Kid has no power. If the Twins have 40 man spots, I could see them putting Romero there to keep him around.
    1. Siehbiscuit's Avatar
      Siehbiscuit -
      Just curious why Trevor May continues to be thought of as a bullpen guy in the future, due to his walk rate, when Meyer had nearly an identical BB/9 in 2013?! May improved tremendously this year and may continue on the same trajectory next year. They both are high K guys (Meyer definitely moreso), but I really like what May will be able to bring the club in the future.
    1. Shane Wahl's Avatar
      Shane Wahl -
      I thought I posted a response to this last night, but maybe not. Anyway, Parmelee, Colabello, Pinto, and Hicks better be with the Twins out of the gate. Yes, I said Hicks.

      And no one mentioned Beresford as the DH, but Santana as the DH. Santana is going to have to show that he can play SS or he is going to have to be traded (and I don't think that is such a terrible idea).
    1. ltwedt's Avatar
      ltwedt -
      Almost makes me wish I lived in NY, . . . Pretty sure I'd see better baseball there than at Target Field in 2014!
    1. Shane Wahl's Avatar
      Shane Wahl -
      Quote Originally Posted by Siehbiscuit View Post
      Just curious why Trevor May continues to be thought of as a bullpen guy in the future, due to his walk rate, when Meyer had nearly an identical BB/9 in 2013?! May improved tremendously this year and may continue on the same trajectory next year. They both are high K guys (Meyer definitely moreso), but I really like what May will be able to bring the club in the future.
      Where did someone say that about May. I agree that he improved this year enough to make me not worry about him as a starter. And a pretty good one too. He just needs to not get hit so much, actually.
    1. 3up3down's Avatar
      3up3down -
      of the pitchers listed above,

      albers,hendriks & devries probably come off the 40 man this winter & may be elibible to file free agency, almost positive albers can

      walters is not on the 40 man & not under twins control , he will file for free agency on sept 30 when minor leaguers can file.
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