The Twins picked up a win on Thursday night thanks to another big game from Kendrys Morales against his former team. Morales had an important two-run double to help stretch the Twins' lead. The Twins have now won three straight games and head out to Colorado for some interleague play against the Rockies and Justin Morneau, Michael Cuddyer and LaTroy Hawkins.
Let's take a look at the minor leagues.
Red Wings Report
Game One: Rochester 4, Scranton/WB 5
Scott Diamond pitched poorly, lasting four and two-thirds innings, giving up nine hits, four earned runs and two home runs. He struck out three and walked one. The Red Wings scored enough runs to keep Diamond from being tagged with the loss but he left the game down 4-2. Lester Oliveros came on and pitched into the seventh inning. He was lifted with one out and Ryan Pressly allowed an inherited runner to score, giving Oliveros and the Red Wings a loss.
James Beresford was 2-4 with a double and an RBI, and Eric Farris was 2-3 with an RBI. The recently activated Josmil Pinto was 1-2 with a walk and a run scored. Not much else happened for the Red Wings in this seven inning game, but as a team the Red Wings struck out only one time.
Game Two: Rochester 0, Scranton/WB 1
Rochester pitched a bullpen game in the night cap, sending Deolis Guerra and A.J. Achter to the mound. Guerra started and pitched three scoreless innings before yielding to Achter. After pitching three scoreless innings of his own, Achter gave up a solo home run to the first batter in the seventh inning and was tagged with the loss.
The Red Wings managed just five hits and struck out six times. Wilkin Ramirez was the only hitter with multiple hits, going 2-3. The Wings left six runners on base and were 0-2 with runners in scoring position.
Rock Cats Review
New Britain 4, New Hampshire 0
Thirty-two year old Virgil Vasquez pitched a complete game shutout. He gave up only five hits and struck out eight. He did not walk a single batter. Vasquez pitched efficiently, throwing just 107 pitches with 74 going for strikes. Vasquez pitched well enough on his own, but picked up some help from his defense with a couple double plays, an outfield assist and a runner caught stealing.
With the bats, left fielder Mike Kvasnicka stayed hot: he was 2-4 with two doubles, two RBIs and a run scored. Aaron Hicks was 1-3 with a walk and an RBI. Eddie Rosario was 2-4. Kennys Vargas hit a solo home run in the fourth.
Fort Myers 5, Palm Beach 4
The Miracle needed five pitchers to earn the win, and pitched just well enough to keep the Miracle out front all game. Ethan Mildren picked up his first win at Double-A with 5.1 innings of two-run baseball. He scattered five hits, struck out 3, walked one and gave up both of his runs on a two-run homer. Madison Boer and Steven Gruver each pitched an inning of relief earning a hold. Brandon Peterson also earned a hold of his own for two-thirds of an inning of work to close out the eighth, despite giving up a run. Tyler Jones came on and pitched a clean ninth to pick up his twelfth save of the year.
Travis Harrison led the Miracle with three base hits, including a solo home run. Niko Goodrum was 2-5 with a double and a run scored, and Aderlin Mejia was 2-4. Byron Buxton, DHing and hitting leadoff, was 0-4.
Cedar Rapids 7, Wisconsin 5
Chih-Wei Hu, making his first start in Cedar Rapids, pitched six innings, struck out five, walked one, and gave up just four hits. Hu gave up no earned runs, but was tagged for four unearned runs in the first inning thanks to THREE Kernels' errors. Alex Muren pitched the seventh and eighth and picked up the win as the Kernels scored late. Muren struck out two and gave up two hits. Dallas Gallant came on and gave up a run, but still struck out the side to earn his first save of the year in Cedar Rapids.
Alex Swim was 2-4 with a double and two RBIs, and Bo Altobelli was 2-2 with a double, a walk and two runs scored hitting out of the eighth spot.
Elizabethton 4, Kingsport 2
A strong performance from the Twins pitching staff helped E-Town pick up their 14th win of the season. Matt Batts went five innings and gave up two earned runs while he struck out six and scattered four hits. Kuo Hua Lo and Dereck Rodriguez each pitched two scoreless innings to close out the game. Lo struck out five in two innings and Rodriguez struck out two and he walked one.
Jeremias Pineda was hot at the top of the lineup, 2-4 with a double, a run scored and a walk. Nick Gordon was held hitless on Thursday night, 0-3 with a walk, but he did pick up an RBI. Max Murphy was 1-4 with a run scored and a double, but also had two strike outs.
GCL Twins Takes
GCL Twins 4, GCL Orioles 2
Baseball is weird. Onas Farfan pitches four scoreless innings to start the game, but because he did not last five innings, he leaves with no decision. Miguel Gonzalez comes on , gives up the only two runs of the night in two innings and because the Twins managed to tack on an extra run of support in the fifth he earns the win. Seth Wagner and Trevor Hildenberger finished the game for the GCL Twins.
Nelson Molina was the only batter with multiple hits, 2-3 with a run scored and two walks in five plate appearances. Rafael P Valera was 1-3 with a triple and two RBIs. Tyree Davis picked up a triple of his own and was 1-4 with an RBI.
DSL Twins Notes
DSL Twins 3, DSL Reds 5
Jadison Jimenez (which HAS to be a made up name) pitched six innings and gave up only a single unearned run but had a strong performance spoiled after Erick Balbuena, who pitched a scoreless inning, allowed the first three batters of the eight to reach base and was tagged for three earned runs and the loss. Daulin Ramirez entered the game while the Twins still had a lead, but allowed the inherited runners to score, plus another one for good measure and blew a save.
Lewin Diaz was 2-3 with a solo home run. Roni Tapia was 0-4 with three strike outs. Antonio Tovar was 2-4 with an RBI.
Twins Daily Minor League Players of the Day
Twins Daily Pitcher of the Day - Virgin Vasquez, New Britian Rock Cats
Twins Daily Hitter of the Day - Travis Harrison, Fort Myers Miracle
Friday's Probable Pitchers
Rochester @ Scranton/WB (6:05 Central) – Mark Hamburger (Listen
Reading @ New Britain (6:05 Central) – Pat Dean (Listen
Dunedin @ Fort Myers (6:05 Central) – Brett Lee (Listen
Cedar Rapids @ Clinton (6:30 Central) - Kohl Stewart (Listen
Kingsport @ Elizabethton (6:00 Central) - Felix Jorge (Listen
GCL Red Sox @ GCL Twins (11:00 AM Central) - TBD
DSL Reds @ DSL Twins (9:30 AM Central) - TBD