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  • Twins Minor League Report (6/23): Berrios, Roberts Lead Miracle

    The Twins have a scheduled off day before starting a series in Anaheim against the Angels.

    The club is expected to make a move before tomorrow's game. The belief is they'd like to get down to 12 pitchers. While the exact moves are unknown, it should be noted that Chris Herrmann was replaced in tonight's game for no apparent reason.

    We should know more tomorrow.

    Moving on to Monday's action:

    Rochester 2, Buffalo 4
    Box Score

    It would be great to read about Alex Meyer's return to the win column... or at least a return to pitching a good game. However, it wasn't good. It lasted only 3.2 innings (and 73 pitches), but not before giving up seven hits, four runs (two home runs), two walks and three strikeouts. This is Meyer's third consecutive start where he's failed to make it to the fifth inning. It should be noted, too, that Meyer is only ten innings short of his innings total of last year.

    Edgar Ibarra (two innings) and A.J. Achter (2.1 innings) each allowed two hits in scoreless appearances.

    The lineup left some things to be desired. Deibinson Romero, Daniel Ortiz and Chris Rahl each had two hits, including Rahl's home run and Ortiz's triple. James Beresford also tripled. Ortiz was stranded on third base to end the game.

    New Britain 3, Altoona 4
    Box Score

    Like all good things, the Rock Cats 12-game winning streak has come to an end. Despite winning 15 of their last 16 coming into tonight, New Britain (39-33) still trails Portland (50-26) by nine games in the Eastern League East Division.

    Virgil Vasquez was tasked to continue the streak and allowed four runs in six innings. The bullpen trio of Jim Fuller, Matt Summers and Dan Turpen combined for three shutout innings and five strikeouts, but the offense didn't offer enough support to get the win.

    Offensively, Eddie Rosario paced the lineup with three hits. He drove in a run and scored once also. Tony Thomas and Aaron Hicks added doubles. Hicks scored on a Rosario hit in the bottom of the ninth, but Rosario - the tying run - was stranded on third on when Reynaldo Rodriguez foul-popped out to end the game.

    Seth informed us on Twitter around 10 PM that it "appears" that Kennys Vargas will be on the Futures Game roster when it is announced tomorrow.

    Fort Myers 12, Charlotte 1
    Box Score

    The Miracle got it done early and often tonight. Nate Roberts collected his first hit of the year. And his second, third and fourth. He also hit three doubles, scored three runs and drove in two. If you're not familiar with Roberts - and you probably aren't unless you've followed the system closely for a long time - he is an on-base machine who has struggled (and that's not putting it too strongly) to stay healthy.

    Jorge Polanco, Niko Goodrum and Jairo Rodriguez all had two hits. This is the fifth-straight multi-hit game for Polanco. Rodriguez and Tyler Grimes both doubled. Goodrum stole his 13th base of the season.

    Travis Harrison was the only member of the lineup who didn't score a run; one of two (Dalton Hicks being the other) who didn't get a hit and one of two (Aderling Mejia, too) who didn't drive in a run. Harrison saw his 14-game hit streak come to an end.

    Jose Berrios was on the hill and was his normal self. In six innings, he allowed five hits and no walks. He struck out eight and allowed only one run. Two triples and the run occurred after Berrios had sat in the dugout and watched the hitters bat around and force a pitching change. In his last 10 games, Berrios is 7-1 with a 1.56 ERA. He's struck out 82 in 63.1 innings. He's only walked 16 and allowed 42 hits (for a WHIP of 0.92).
    No one is really sure why Berrios is still in Fort Myers and he's probably solidified his status as a mid-season Top 50 prospect in all of baseball.

    Cedar Rapids had a scheduled day off on Monday. Tomorrow they will begin a series in Peoria.

    Elizabethton 1, Pulaski 2
    Box Score

    The E-Twins fell to 3-2 on the season.

    E-town's pitching allowed only two runs on 12 hits. Derrick Penilla, back from Cedar Rapids, pitched 4.2 innings. He struck out five and allowed an unearned run on seven scattered hits. Randy LeBlanc allowed four hits in 2.1 innings. Cameron Booser allowed one hit in two innings.

    Offensively, the offense was pretty stagnant. Max Murphy and Brett Doe doubled and Austin Diemer, who had the only RBI, and Tyler Mautner singled. That was it for the offense. The team was 1-for-4 with runners in scoring position.

    Since his four-hit debut, Nick Gordon has gone 1-for-17 (0-for-4 tonight) and is batting .227. Fortunately, the cold streak has only included three strikeouts (but no walks).

    GCL Twins 5, GCL Orioles 7
    Box Score

    The rookie league team dropped their 3rd straight game to start their young season.

    Amaurys Minier failed to get a hit for the first time this year, but he did walk twice and score a run. Again, he started the game in left field and finished it in first base. Minier remains the top prospect on the roster.

    Manuel Guzman, a shortstop, had the only multi-hit game for the team.

    Miguel Gonzalez made his season debut and it was forgettable. In 3.1 innings, he allowed eight walks and five earned runs. He did strike out four though and walked none.

    Onas Farfan made his professional debut. He collected five outs (two by strikeouts) and walked three. Reyson Zoquiel took the loss, giving up two runs in two innings.

    Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Nate Roberts, Fort Myers
    Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Jose Berrios, Fort Myers

    Rochester @ Scranton/WB (6:05 CST) – Logan Darnell (Listen)
    Altoona @ New Britain (5:35 CST) – Pat Dean (Listen)
    Ft. Myers @ Charlotte (9:00 AM CST) – D.J. Baxendale (Listen)
    Cedar Rapids @ Peoria (7:00 CST) - Ethan Mildren (Listen)
    Pulaski @ Elizabethton (6:00 CST) – Michael Cederoth (Listen)
    GCL Orioles @ GCL Twins (11:00am CST) – TBD
    Comments 27 Comments
    1. Monkeypaws's Avatar
      Monkeypaws -
      Berrios is a stud pitcher - great to see his hitting is coming along too

      Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Nate Roberts, Fort Myers
      Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – Jose Berrios, Fort Myers
    1. DJL44's Avatar
      DJL44 -
      Always good to see a Nate Roberts sighting. Chronologically he's WAY too old for Ft Myers but he hasn't really played much since 2012.
    1. Jeremy Nygaard's Avatar
      Jeremy Nygaard -
      Quote Originally Posted by Cody Christie View Post
      Love the picture of Berrios with this article. Pretty epic.
      Its his Google+ profile picture.
    1. nicksaviking's Avatar
      nicksaviking -
      Quote Originally Posted by Jeremy Nygaard View Post
      While I get the concern of Law's of being an "extreme fly ball" guy, I do think that works out ok at Target Field.
      Not to mention that the preference of groundballs vs flyballs is not universally in favor of groundballs, Bill James being one who believes flyballs are preferable.

      A fan who thinks the Twins projected future infield's defense looks sketchy would be another
    1. Steve Lein's Avatar
      Steve Lein -
      Good to see Nate Roberts back! He's always one of my favorite guys to follow when he's playing. Wish there was something they could pin down for the reasons he's always been hurt. He's definitely not afraid of getting plunked by pitches, which some might cite, but I'm pretty sure all his injuries have been various leg-ailments. I think he could have been on the verge of helping the Twins by now if he had been reasonably healthy thus far (never thought he needed to repeat the MWL, even with injuries). Love his game.
    1. jokin's Avatar
      jokin -
      Quote Originally Posted by drivlikejehu View Post
      Pedro threw mid-90s when he was young. Injuries sapped his velocity, I believe shortly before Pitch f/x was introduced.

      Target Field is good for flyball pitchers, but based on his current rates Berrios would project to be among the most extreme flyball pitchers in MLB (hitters put more balls in the air as the levels advance).

      That's partly why it's strange Berrios hasn't been promoted - is it really a good thing for Berrios, who is completely dominant right now, to be shielded from his main weakness? He basically doesn't have to worry about allowing home runs there. Obviously a different kind of pitcher, but look at Baxendale - flyball pitcher dominates FSL and then is blown up in the EL.

      I think Berrios would be fine overall in AA, but he would be punished for bad pitches much more frequently. He's too good for the FSL and keeping him there makes no sense.
      Is this as simple as a "first things first", let's let him focus on one priority at a time, thing? Meaning, perhaps he moves up soon right after a start for the home fans in the Futures Game....?
    1. HansGruber's Avatar
      HansGruber -
      Quote Originally Posted by Jeremy Nygaard View Post
      While I get the concern of Law's of being an "extreme fly ball" guy, I do think that works out ok at Target Field.

      I would like to make the Berrios/Pedro comparisons, but Pedro was pretty close to 1:1 GO/FO. Pedro's fastball was only around 90 (which came as a surprise to me) according to Fangraphs.
      Law was a bit quick to dismiss him because of his home ball park in A+ ball. The ball park doesn't create a 4.67 k/bb ratio and his splits are identical. Not to mention Berrios is only 20. Seems like a reach on Law's part, but it's just one man's opinion.
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