Out of town for the Holiday, so this will be a bit short. The system rebounded from their first sub-.500 week with a 15-13 (99-86) record this week. Three of the teams did very well, considering that Beloit was winless at 0-6.
Beloit placed Juan Portes on the DL with a broken finger. He was replaced by Andrew Thompson, who came off the DL. The Twins placed Shannon Stewart on the DL and replaced him with Jason Kubel, who was called up from Rochester. Rochester activated Chris Heintz from the DL and returned Steve Lomasney to New Britain. New Britain returned Jose Leger to Ft. Myers. New Britain activated Justin Olson from the DL and Bobby Korecky was promoted to Rochester, replacing Keven Cameron who was placed on the DL. Ft. Myers placed first baseman Johnny Woodard on the DL with a knee injury that he had been playing with for several weeks. Kevin West was activated and sent to Ft. Myers for a rehab assignment. Pitcher Matt Garza was the International League Pitcher of the Week, and Erik Lis was the Midwest League Player of the Week.
Play of the Week
Garrett Guzman came in to pinch hit for Ft. Myers in the bottom of the 10th Thursday with Trevor Plouffe on second and the game tied 4-4. He promptly hit a double driving in the game winning 5th run.
Rochester Red Wings (AAA) (5-2, 28-19, 1st/+0.5)
The Red Wings had an excellent week, winning 5 of 7 games and moving back into first place a half game ahead of Scranton.
Jason Tyner was taken out of Wednesday's game with a tight groin. He was able to get a hit prior to leaving the game, streaching his current hitting streak to 17 games. For the week, Tyner was 9 for 19 with 3 runs, 1 double, 2 rbi and 2BB. Tyner is currently hitting .336Ave. Gil Velazquez has been hot since his promotion from New Britain. This week Gil was 6 for 14 with a triple, 5 rbi and 3BB. Gil is hitting .367Ave in 30 at bats. Jason Bartlett continues to hit well, going 8 for 25 this week with 2 runs, 1 double, 1 rbi and 2 stolen bases in 3 attempts. Jason is now hitting .314Ave. Terry Tiffee was 10 for 24 with 7 runs scored, 1 double, 4 rbi and 2BB. Garrett Jones had a big week going 9 for 28 with 3 runs scored, 2 doubles, 3 home runs, 9 rbi and 1BB. Although hitting only .212Ave, Jones leads the team with 7 home runs and 32 rbi.
J.D. Durbin appears to be regaining his former top prospect status. He won his only start this week, pitching 6.2ip with 2 hits, 0er and 6K/3BB...lowering his era to 2.96. Pat Neshek continues to pitch well earning 3 saves in 3 games, pitching 4.2ip with 3 hits, 0er and 7K/0BB. Pat now has a 1.95era and 0.96WHIP. Kyle Lohse got 2 starts including Thursday's game that was suspended due to rain and finished on Friday. In his first two starts Kyle pitched 11.0ip with 6 hits, 1er and 5K/1BB.
New Britain Rock Cats (AA) (4-4, 21-23, 3rd/-4.5)
The Rock Cats were 4-4 this week, gaining a half game on division leading Connecticut.
Alex Romero has been hitting like a top prospect after struggling the first few weeks following his demotion when Jason Kubel was sent to Rochester. This week, Romero was 11 for 27 with 6 runs scored, 4 doubles, 2 home runs, 0BB and 6 rbi raising his team leading average to .310. He also had 4 stolen bases in 5 attempts. Danny Matienzo, who is the team leader with 30 rbi, was 5 for 26 with 4 runs scored, a double, 2BB and 3 rbi. Top prospect Matt Moses was 4 for 16 with 2 runs, 2 home runs (leads team with 8), 5 rbi and 0BB. Moses, who is hitting .295Ave, also had 2 errors this week for a team leading 12 this season.
Matt Garza had another excellent game in his second start at New Britain. He pitched 6.0ip with 4 hits, 0er and 9K/0BB maintaining his 0.00era with a 0.39WHIP. Lefty J.T. Thomas got into 2 games (1gs), pitching 7.0ip with 6 hits, 1er and 2K/1BB.
Ft. Myers Miracle (Hi-A) (6-1, 28-20, T1st/+1.0)
The Miracle had an awesome week, winning 6 and returning to a first place tie with Dunedin.
Kevin West began a rehab assignment, going 4 for 8 with a run scored, double, home run, 8 rbi and 4BB. Alexi Casilla had an off week, going 8 for 30 with 6 runs scored, 2 doubles, 2 rbi and 2BB. Casilla also stole 2 bases in 3 attempts to maintain his system co-leadership with 16 steals. Garrett Guzman was only 7 for 25, however, scored 5 runs with 2 doubles, 1 home run (leads team with 5) and 9 rbi...extending his team and system lead to 37 rbi. Former top pick Trevor Plouffe was 4 for 24, however scored 5 runs with 2 doubles, 2 rbi and 4BB. Althougth Plouffe is hitting only .206Ave, he leads the team (excluding players with only a few at bats) with a .335OBP due to his 28BB and only 31 strikeouts. Trevor had 2 more errors this week and is tied with Luke Hughes for the team lead with 12.
Kevin Slowey had what for him can be considered an off week. Kevin had 2 starts, pitching 12.1 innings with 10 hits, 5 runs (4 earned) and 12K/3BB. His 3 walks last night raised his total for the season to 5BB compared with 75K in 60.2ip and a 1.12era with a 0.58WHIP. Anthony Swarzak continues to pitch well, especially for a 20 year old. He started 2 games, pitching 10.0 innings with 12 hits, 6er and 9K/4BB. It has been reported however, that a "non-error" allowed 3 of his 6 earned runs this week. J.P. Martinez got into 3 games (5.0ip) earning 2 saves. He allowed 1 hit and 0er with 5K/1BB, lowering his era to 3.25. 2005 8th round pick Danny Powers has been excellent following his first appearance after his recent promotion from Beloit. This week Powers got into 2 games, pitching 5.1 innings with 3 hits, 0er and 6K/1BB...reducing his era to 1.76 with a 0.78WHIP.
Beloit Snappers (A) (0-6, 22-24, 4th/-6.5)
There actually were some positives in a winless week, as two losses were by scores of 2-1 and a third loss was 1-0.
Considering the team scored only 9 runs in 6 games, there wasn't a lot of top performances by any hitters. The system's top hitter, Erik Lis, saw his average drop to .348 following a week where he was 5 for 16 with 2 runs scored, 3 doubles, 1 home run, 1 rbi and 2BB. Lis continues to lead the team with 7 home runs and 28 rbi. Unfortunately, Lis had 3 errors this week (8 this season) Caleb Moore saw some action at first base last evening, however, his average dropped to .281 following a week where he was 4 for 21 with 1 run scored, 3 rbi and 1BB.
Several pitchers had good weeks including staff ace Brian Duensing, who pitched 7.1 innings in his only start with 7 hits, 2er and 6K/1BB. Brian now has a 2.06era and 1.07WHIP. Oswaldo Sosa had 2 starts, pitching 13.0 innings with 10 hits, 5er and 8K/4BB. Sosa has a 3.12era and 1.33WHIP in 49.0 innings this season. Lefty Ryan Mullins had a very good start after a few so-so outings. Mullins pitched 7.2 innings with 4 hits, 1er and 6K/0BB. Hard throwing Eduardo Morlan had 1 start this week, pitching 5.0 innings with 3 hits, 1 unearned run and 4K/3BB. Morlan now boasts a 1.67era with a 1.05WHIP.
Questions of the Week
If Jason Kubel stays with the Twins, will Alex Romero return to Rochester? Considering that Romero is demonstrating on the field that he must be considered a top prospect, will he be one of this year's September call ups?
Jason Bartlett's league leading 19 doubles and average that is continually well over .300 doesn't demonstrate a feeling of urgency. Pat Neshek has struck out 56 batters in 32.1 innings with a `1.95era and 0.96WHIP but somehow can't get lefties out. Jason Kubel gets recalled and promptly sits for nearly a week, then is expected to put up great numbers in his first start...until he gets pulled late in the game. It is certainly wonderful that none of the veterans currently playing for the Twins have any aspects of their games which one could consider a problem, isn't it? Watch for my Player and Pitcher of the Week Monday on Seth's site.