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  • Twins Minor League Report (4/17): A Pitch for Pino

    There were four games in the Twins' farm system, and the Twins were able to play a split double header at Target Field in some record cold conditions. More impressive, they were able to win two games against the Blue Jays, a team they have been crushed by in recent years. Kyle Gibson threw eight shutout innings in the afternoon game. In the evening game, the Twins used eight eighth inning walks, and three wild pitches in that same inning, to turn a 5-3 deficit into a 9-5 win.

    It would be very cool if the story in the minor leagues on Thursday were to become a great story of the Twins 2014 season as well. Who was it? Well, keep reading to find out…

    Here is a look at what happened in the Twins' farm system on Thursday. And, by the way, it's another Top Pitching Prospect Day on Friday.


    RED WINGS REPORT
    Game 1 - Rochester 1, Pawtucket 2 (11 innings)
    Box Score

    With a doubleheader, the games are only supposed to be seven innings. With this game going 11 innings, the two teams ended up playing 18 innings anyway.

    Logan Darnell got the start in Game 1 and was impressive. The lefty from the University of Kentucky gave up one run on six hits and a walk over six innings. He struck out four. Ryan Pressly came on and threw two scoreless innings. He gave up a hit and a walk. AJ Achter gave up no runs and recorded four outs. Aaron Thompson got the final five outs, but he gave up one run to take the loss.

    Brad Nelson led the offense. The veteran went 2-2 with two walks and a double. Deibinson Romero went 2-4 with his second double of the year. Chris Rahl was 2-4 with his third double.

    Game 2 - Rochester 2, Pawtucket 0
    Box Score

    This offseason, the Twins signed veteran free agent Yohan Pino. Ten years earlier, 2004, the Twins signed Pino out of Venezuela. That summer, he was the Dominican Summer League Pitcher of the Year. In 2005, he was in Elizabethton where he went 9-2 with 64 strikeouts in 67.2 innings. In 2006, he went 14-2 with a 1.91 ERA, primarily out of the Beloit bullpen, though he ended the season making seven starts. That’s the role he has had ever since, splitting time between the rotation and the bullpen. He got up to Rochester in 2009, but in late August, he was sent to Cleveland in exchange for Carl Pavano. In early 2011, he went to the Blue Jays organization. He was there until this spring when he was invited to Twins spring training. Already this year, he has made two starts and two relief appearances. Both starts came in Game 2’s of doubleheaders including the game 2 on Thursday night.

    The 30-year-old threw the complete game shutout. He gave up two hits, walked three and struck out four. He improved to 2-0 and reduced his ERA to 0.59.

    Deibinson Romero went 2-3 with another double. Eric Farris went 2-3. Doug Bernier hit his second home run.

    Last year, the Twins had several players with great stories get call-ups. If there is one to root for in 2014, make it Yohan Pino.



    ROCK CATS REVIEW
    New Britain, Portland

    This game was postponed due to poor weather conditions. The teams will play a doubleheader in Maine on Friday.


    MIRACLE MATTERS
    Ft. Myers 1, St. Lucie 6
    Box Score

    Brett Lee took the loss, but he recorded his second straight quality start. The lefty went six innings and gave up two runs on three hits. He walked one and struck out one. Tim Shibuya came in for the seventh and gave up two runs on three hits and a walk. Madison Boer gave up two runs (1 earned) on three hits and a walk in the final two innings.

    For the fifth time already this season, the Miracle didn’t have a hit through five innings. They ended with four hits in the game.

    Jason Bartlett was originally in the starting lineup, batting second and playing shortstop. Shortly before the game, there was a lineup change. Jorge Polanco played shortstop and batted second. No official word yet on why Bartlett was removed. Polanco had a hit and committed two more errors. Levi Michael also had two errors in the game.


    KERNELS NUGGETS
    Cedar Rapids 3, West Michigan 7
    Box Score

    The Kernels fell behind early, and fought back. In the bottom of the 8th inning, Logan Wade tied the game with a two-run double. Unfortunately, it was all for naught as the team gave up four runs and fell to the Tigers’ affiliate.

    Randy Rosario got the start. He struggled early with his control. Because of it, the lefty lasted only three innings. He gave up three runs (two earned) on five hits and five walks while striking out two. Brandon Bixler came on and gave up two hits and a walk in 2.2 shutout innings. He struck out three. Brandon Petersen went the next 2.1 innings and didn’t allow a run. He struck out three. Hudson Boyd came into the tie game in the top of the ninth. He gave up four runs on four hits in the inning to take the loss.

    Logan Wade had the big hit in the 8th inning. He was 2-4. The double was his second. Jason Kanzler was 2-4 and stole a base. Bryan Haar and Bo Altobelli each had a double.



    TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY
    Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Yohan Pino, Rochester Red Wings
    Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Deibinson Romero, Rochester Red Wings

    FRIDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS
    Pawtucket @ Rochester (5:00 CST) – Alex Meyer (Listen)
    Portland @ New Britain (Doubleheader: 4:35 CST) – DJ Baxendale, Taylor Rogers (Listen)
    St. Lucie @ Ft. Myers (6:35 CST) – JO Berrios (Listen)
    West Michigan @ Cedar Rapids (6:05 CST) – Kohl Stewart (Listen)



    Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss the Thursday games. A quick reminder:

    Thanks to the Twins wins over the Blue Jays on Thursday, it means that on Friday you can get 50% off a Large of Extra Large pizza when you use the “TWINSWIN” promotion code at PapaJohns.com.
    Comments 3 Comments
    1. tjsyam921's Avatar
      tjsyam921 -
      Not saying they will but if some of the major league starters continue to struggle with starters in AAA pitching well. How long will they stick with them? And what would they do with the MLB starters having multi year deals?
    1. diehardtwinsfan's Avatar
      diehardtwinsfan -
      starters with multi-year deals are going to pitch longer. That's just how it is. I wouldn't be shocked if TR was able to find a buyer for KC at one point to get an AAA guy a shot, but this rotation that we currently field is what's going to be pitching in MN for the forseable future.
    1. Thrylos's Avatar
      Thrylos -
      I saw Pino pitch at Spring Training and was not impressed at all. I watched Pino pitched at the doubleheader last Saturday and was very impressed, especially with his ability to change speeds and locations with his FB and his slider and change were as good as usual. He was really fooling batters who did not know what was coming. The interesting thing is that while with the Twins, Pinto's FB was at high 80s. Saturday it was sitting between 89-91 and once he reached back and got a 94. I think that he can contribute to the Twins' pen right now...
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