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  • Twins Minor League Report (6/18): Miracle Clinch Playoff Berth

    We don’t know a lot about what will happen at the end of the season, but we do know that the Ft. Myers Miracle will return to the Florida State League playoffs. It came down to the final game, but their win clinched the division and a playoff spot for Doug Mientkiewicz’s crew.

    Kyle Gibson has done a great job of late at proving those who believed in him right. On Wednesday afternoon in Fenway Park, Gibson threw seven more shutout innings, increasing his streak to 22 consecutive innings. However, it wasn’t enough as the Twins fell 2-1 in ten innings to the Red Sox.



    Let’s check out what happened in the Twins farm system on Wednesday:

    RED WINGS REPORT
    Game 1 - Rochester 4, Pawtucket 9
    Box Score

    Sean Gilmartin made his Rochester debut on Tuesday night. He went 3.1 innings and gave up two unearned runs on six hits. He walked none and struck out two. That’s when the rains came and the game was suspended until Wednesday night. Scott Diamond took over on the mound. The lefty went the next 2.1 innings. He gave up one unearned run on three hits. Deolis Guerra came on and was charged with four runs (2 earned) on three hits and recorded just one out. AJ Achter came on and got the next three outs. However, he was uncharacteristically wild. He gave up two runs on four walks and struck out two. Edgar Ibarra threw the final two innings. He didn’t give up a run, though he allowed three hits and walked two. He struck out three.

    Dan Rohling led the offense. He went 2-3 with a walk and his tenth double. Eric Farris was 2-5 with his 11th double and two RBI. Deibinson Romero doubled for the 18th time. Chris Herrmann hit his second triple.

    Game 2 - Rochester 1, Pawtucket 4
    Box Score

    Another start for Alex Meyer, and again he was unable to eat many innings due to high pitch counts. He needed 78 pitches just to get through three innings. He gave up no runs on two hits. He walked two and struck out four. Ryan Pressly came in and threw three shutout innings. He gave up a hit, walked one and struck out two. Michael Tonkin came in for the seventh inning. He gave up four runs (3 earned) on three hits, a walk and a hit batter. Aaron Thompson came in and got the final two outs of the inning, but not before walking two batters.

    There wasn’t much offense for the Red Wings in this one. Wilkin Ramirez went 2-3 with his 16th double. Dan Rohlfing was 1-2 with a walk and his 11th double.

    ROCK CATS REVIEW
    New Britain 5, Harrisburg 4
    Box Score

    Down 4-3 after eight innings, the Rock Cats scored two to take the lead. The runs were driven in by Mike Kvasnicka with a bases loaded single. He was 2-3 with two walks. Kennys Vargas went 3-5 with his 13th double. Tony Thomas went 3-4 with a walk and his 13th double.

    Virgil Vasquez made the start for the Rock Cats. He went 6.2 innings and gave up four runs on eight hits (two home runs) and two walks. Matt Summers came on and got four outs, two on strikeouts. Lester Oliveros struck out two in the ninth for his tenth save of the season.

    MIRACLE MATTERS
    Ft. Myers 5, Bradenton 0
    Box Score

    Doug Mientkiewicz is in his second season as the Miracle manager. For the second straight season, he has led his squad to a first-half title. It took until the final game of the first half, but the Miracle win on Wednesday night means they will be in the playoffs again. A year ago, they clinched with about eight games to go. This year it was a little more difficult.

    DJ Baxendale made the start for the Miracle. He went six shutout innings. He gave up just four hits, walked none and struck out five. Matt Tomshaw came on in relief and did what he’s done all season: throw up a few zeroes. He threw three scoreless innings for his second save of the year.

    The game was scoreless until the fifth inning when Stuart Turner stepped to the plate and hit his fourth home run of the season to give the Miracle a 1-0 lead. Turner went 2-3 in the game, adding his eighth double. Stephen Wickens and Lance Ray each went 2-4 with a double. Travis Harrison also had two hits.

    KERNELS NUGGETS

    All Star Break.

    TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY
    Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – DJ Baxendale, Ft. Myers Miracle
    Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Mike Kvasnicka, New Britain Rock Cats

    THURSDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS
    Pawtucket @ Rochester (12:05 CST) – Logan Darnell (Listen)
    New Britain @ Harrisburg (6:00 CST) – TBD (Listen)
    Ft. Myers @ St. Lucie (5:30 CST) – TBD (Listen)
    Cedar Rapids @ Kane County (6:30 CST) – Aaron Slegers (Listen)
    Elizabethton @ Greeneville (6:00 CST) - Stephen Gonsalves


    Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss the Wednesday games.

    CEDAR RAPIDS / TWINS WEEKEND

    Consider a trip to Cedar Rapids for the series against Clinton June 27-30. It is their Twins Weekend, and they have several fun events. Check out www.kernels.com for more information or to order tickets.

    Friday, June 27

    • Friday Mug Club Drink Special
    • Autism Action Jersey Night - fans can bid on jerseys and take players' jerseys home that night.
    • Halfway to Christmas - (Santa, Mrs. Claus and reindeer will be there)
    • Post game fireworks
    • Stadium Snow Globe giveaway



    Saturday, June 28

    • Twins Night - Rod Carew, Twins organist Sue Nelson and TC Bear will be there.
    • Post game fireworks



    Sunday, June 29

    • Post game run the bases
    • Autographs from Kernels on field after the game
    • Play bingo for a chance to win Twins tickets
    Comments 12 Comments
    1. jokin's Avatar
      jokin -
      Aaron Hicks have transportation issues that kept him from reporting to New Britain?
    1. Jeff A's Avatar
      Jeff A -
      Why does Meyer keep getting pulled so early? Yeah, 78 pitches is a lot for three innings, but it's not like he should be gassed at that point. Is something going on here?
    1. Seth Stohs's Avatar
      Seth Stohs -
      Quote Originally Posted by Jeff A View Post
      Why does Meyer keep getting pulled so early? Yeah, 78 pitches is a lot for three innings, but it's not like he should be gassed at that point. Is something going on here?
      Most teams, Twins included, have a rule whereby if a pitcher needs more than 30 pitches in any one inning, they will get pulled. He averaged 26 pitches per inning, so most likely that third inning went pretty long and he went over 30.

      Also, his pitch limit is 80-85 right now anyway, so he wouldn't have gone much longer anyway.
    1. gunnarthor's Avatar
      gunnarthor -
      At this point, I'd call Meyer up and let him pitch out of the bullpen for 6 weeks and then give him 6-10 starts toward the end of the season. And put May in the rotation now.
    1. dougkoebernick's Avatar
      dougkoebernick -
      Thanks for the insight Seth!
    1. Jeff A's Avatar
      Jeff A -
      Quote Originally Posted by Seth Stohs View Post
      Most teams, Twins included, have a rule whereby if a pitcher needs more than 30 pitches in any one inning, they will get pulled. He averaged 26 pitches per inning, so most likely that third inning went pretty long and he went over 30.

      Also, his pitch limit is 80-85 right now anyway, so he wouldn't have gone much longer anyway.
      Thanks, but of course that leads to the next question. Why such a small pitch limit?
    1. Seth Stohs's Avatar
      Seth Stohs -
      Quote Originally Posted by Jeff A View Post
      Thanks, but of course that leads to the next question. Why such a small pitch limit?
      Because he missed two months of the season last year with a shoulder issue and didn't pitch a lot of innings, so they're being careful. Wisely.
    1. Seth Stohs's Avatar
      Seth Stohs -
      Quote Originally Posted by jokin View Post
      Aaron Hicks have transportation issues that kept him from reporting to New Britain?
      Hicks got to New Britain (or Harrisburg, PA) last night. He's expected to play this weekend in Reading, PA.
    1. jokin's Avatar
      jokin -
      Quote Originally Posted by gunnarthor View Post
      At this point, I'd call Meyer up and let him pitch out of the bullpen for 6 weeks and then give him 6-10 starts toward the end of the season. And put May in the rotation now.
      Ding-ding-ding.
    1. highlander's Avatar
      highlander -
      With Meyer's low pitch count he should be able to stretch out over the full season, maybe a Sept call up, start next year at AAAwith an early call up ready to be a stud horse in the rotation
    1. Jeff A's Avatar
      Jeff A -
      Quote Originally Posted by Seth Stohs View Post
      Because he missed two months of the season last year with a shoulder issue and didn't pitch a lot of innings, so they're being careful. Wisely.
      Thanks again. I appreciate the information.
    1. Jim H's Avatar
      Jim H -
      Quote Originally Posted by gunnarthor View Post
      At this point, I'd call Meyer up and let him pitch out of the bullpen for 6 weeks and then give him 6-10 starts toward the end of the season. And put May in the rotation now.
      I would hesitate to put Meyer in the bullpen. When you are a starter, you have a set routine getting ready for your next start. You have set throwing session or sessions between each start and plenty of time to warm up for each start. None of that is necessarily true when you are a reliever. You sometimes need to get ready in hurry. Most relievers need to able to pitch 2 or more days in a row. Meyer has never been a reliever and has had shoulder issues besides. You can't entirely be sure that pitching out of the bullpen wouldn't be harder on his arm than starting.

      My thought is let him be a starter. If he doesn't get to the majors this year because of pitch counts and innings limits, so be it. His future is a dominant starter, hopefully. I would rather the Twins didn't mess with that too much in the name of getting him to the majors a little earlier. Being a reliever is not necessarily easier on the arm than starting. Most starters turned relievers say that they had to learn whole new routines for that role. Let's just prepare Meyer for the role of starter.
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