Minor League Report...July 7, 2007

The organization had an excellent week, finishing with a 26-20 record.  They were again led by Elizabethton at 8-1 while Ft. Myers, at 2-6, struggled much like the first half.

Player movement began early in the week with the signing of 16th round pick Nelvin Fuentes.  Whit Robbins was placed on the DL and has yet to play in his first game since returning to Beloit.  Trent Oeltjen came off the DL at Rochester.  Kevin Slowey was returned to Rochester with Carmen Cali being called up by the Twins as a second lefty in their pen.  Jeremy Cummings requested his release from Rochester, and was replaced by their calling up Brad Baker from New Britain.  Rochester also placed lefty reliever Ricky Barrett on the DL for the second time this season.  

Nick Blackburn was the organization's June Pitcher of the month and Brian Buscher was the Player of the Month.  Tim Lahey, Jose Mijares and Luke Hughes were all named to the Eastern League All-Star game.

Rochester Red Wings (AAA) (3-5, 45-42)

The Red Wings dropped to 3rd place for the first time this season, losing 3 games in their race with Buffalo whom they now trail by 5.0 games.

Manager Stan Cliburn has a 129-110 record in his second year with the Wings.  Should he get another 35 wins this season, 164 wins would be the most of any Wings manager in his first two seasons since Harry Walker (177) in 1952-1953.  His 164 wins would surpass Earl Weaver who had 163 wins in his first two seasons managing the Wings in 1966-1967.

Bobby Korecky has 20 saves which are only three behind the Wings record set by Travis Bowyer (23) in 2005.  Korecky normally is very good, however, a couple bad outings have resulted in his having a 3.63era.  Nick Blackburn saw his streak end as he actually gave up an earned run (1) in his last appearance.  Nick is 6-1 with a 1.54era and 0.95WHIP since joining the Wings.  Fellow callup from New Britain, Brian Duensing has also been an anchor in the Wings rotation with a 4-2 record and 3.00era in 42.0 innings.

Jose Morales continues to lead the team in hitting with a .346Ave.  Matt Tolbert has been in a bit of a slump with his average now second best on the team at .326 with a team leading 4 triples.  Recent callup and Twins minor league player of the month for June, Brian Buscher, is hitting .296Ave.  Alexi Casilla is hitting .280Ave with 19 stolen bases in 29 attempts.  Denard Span's average is slowly moving up to .243 with 14 stolen basis in 19 attempts.

Garrett Jones is hitting .289Ave with a team leading 11 home runs, 54 rbi, 27 doubles and 44 runs.  Former Twin Matt LeCroy hasn't been able to turn the corner as he continues to struggle with a .180Ave, .249SLG, 2 home runs and 20 rbi in 205 at bats.  Ken Harvey is back with the Wings from his rehab in Florida.  In his first 17 at bats he is hitting .235Ave with 1 home run.

New Britain Rock Cats (AA) (4-3, 40-43)

The Cats remain in 4th place, however lost another 3.0 games to division leading Trenton whom they now trail by 13.0 games.

Brad Baker was promoted to Rochester this week to replace Jeremy Cummings.  Signed as a minor league free agent this past winter, Baker had a 2-5 record for the Cats with a 5.33era in 77.2 innings.  Kyle Waldrop is also 2-5 since his promotion from Ft. Myers.  In 43.2 innings Waldrop has a 4.95era.  Ryan Mullins had a good game last night, pitching 5.1 innings with 7 hits, 3 runs and 3K/1BB.  Mullins is 1-2 with the Cats in 45.1 innings with a 3.77era and 35K/11BB.  Reliever J.P. Martinez has been pitching very well and now has a 2-4 record in 24 games (1 start) with 42.1 innings and a 2.98era.  This week J.P. appeared in two games (5.0 innings, 2 hits, 0 runs and 8K/0BB).

Anthony Swarzak has pitched excellent for the Cats since returning from Ft. Myers following his suspension.  His 5.50era in 18.0 innings is reflective of his poor first couple outings in April.  Since returning in late June, he is 2-0 in two starts, 12.1 innings, with 13 hits, 4 runs and 12K/4BB.

Matt Moses is hitting very well since his return from Rochester, with a .317Ave, 2 home runs, and 9 rbi in 60 at bats.  All-Star Luke Hughes is hitting .302Ave with 4 home runs.  Garrett Guzman is making a claim that he belongs in AAA.  Garrett is hitting .284Ave with 9 home runs, and a team leading 51 rbi.  Trevor Plouffe can now say that he is playing as well as could be expected of a 20 year old playing in AA.  Trevor is hitting .286Ave with 7 home runs, 35 rbi, and a team leading 22 doubles and 48 runs scored.  David Winfree has been in a bit of a slump as his average is down to .248 with 5 home runs in 262 at bats.  Brock Peterson continues to amaze for a former 49th round pick, hitting .281Ave with 40 rbi and a team leading 11 home runs.

Ft. Myers Miracle (Hi-A) (2-6, 6-10)

The Miracle dropped to last place losing another 2.0 games to Dunedin whom they now trail by 5.0 games.

Oswaldo Sosa is making his claim to be the team ace.  The 21 year old has a 3-4 record in 16 games and 86.1 innings with a 2.29era, 1.26WHIP and 74K/30BB.  Jay Rainville has had his ups and downs as he recovers from missing all of last season following shoulder surgery.  Jay has a 4-9 record in 18 games, 87.2 innings, with a 3.80era.  Many fans have been calling for the promotion of closer Eduardo Morlan.  Morlan has a 4-2 record with 10 saves in 44.2 innings with a 2.42era, 0.90WHIP and an amazing 61K/7BB.  Since his recent promotion from Beloit, Jeff Manship has a 1-1 record in 2 starts with a 2.70era in 10.0 innings with 12K/5BB.

This team hasn't had much hitting to support its excellent pitching staff.  Danny Valencia was recently promoted form Beloit and leads the team in hitting with a .273Ave in 55 at bats.  Danny also has 2 home runs and his 13 home runs from Beloit and Ft. Myers leads the organization.  Eric Lis had been the team's hitting leader with his .259Ave, 7 home runs, 18 doubles and 43 rbi.  Juan Portes continues to play well with his average currently at .251 with 37 runs scored, 16 doubles and 6 home runs.  

Beloit Snappers (A) (5-2, 9-7)

The Snappers moved up 2.0 games into a 4-way first place tie with Burlington, Cedar Rapids and Peoria.  

With Jeff Manship moving on, Nineteen year old Alex Burnett is arguably the Snapper team ace.  The 2005 12th round pick has a 4-5 record in 16 games, 96.0 innings, with a 3.28era and 69K/21BB.  Eden Prairie native Cole DeVries has a 7-3 record in 17 games, 89.1 innings, with a 2.92era and 71K/22BB.  Closer Robert Delaney has the best numbers of any reliever in the organization...including the Twins.  Delaney has a 1-0 record in 35 games, 45.2 innings, with an organization leading 27 saves, a 0.59era, 0.64WHIP and 55K/6BB.  Tyler Robertson has a 3-2 record in 8 games, 43.1 innings, 2.28era and 49K/15BB.  Matt Fox has been nearly perfect since joining the Snappers from EST and has now joined the starting rotation.  Matt has a 5-0 record in 11 games (3 starts) with 29.1 innings pitched, 0.92era, 0.85WHIP and 27K/3BB.  It is great to see this young man having success following all the arm problems he has dealt with since being picked as a first round sandwich pick in the 2004 draft.

Most of the Snappers best hitters have moved on to Ft. Myers.  Recent callup from EST Wilson Ramos is hitting .280Ave with 6 home runs and 21 rbi in only 125 at bats.  Chris Parmalee continues to improve and right now this 19 year old former first round pick is as productive as any hitter in the organization.  Chris has his average up to .246 with a team leading 11 home runs (tied with the departed Valencia), and 44 rbi in 272 at bats.

Elizabethton Twins (Rookie) (8-1, 15-2)

The ETon Twins are again making a joke of the Appalachian League race...with 15 wins in their first 17 games they now have a 6.5 game lead on second place Kingsport.

Michael Allen is a 2005 13th round pick signed as a draft and follow in spring, 2006.  Allen has a 1-0 record in 4 games with 18.0 innings, a 1.00era and 0.94WHIP.  Like Allen, David Bromberg was a 2005 32nd round pick signed as a draft and follow in 2006.  David has a 3-0 record in 4 games, 16.2 innings, with a 2.16era and an eye catching 25K/11BB.  This year the Twins drafted David's younger brother, Johnny, in the 32nd round.  Will they sign Johnny before the August 15th cut off date?  

With the elimination of "draft and follow" signings from the recent CBA Agreement, it appears the Twins may have taken a hit at a procedure they used very effectively to stock their farm system.

Anthony "slama the door shut" Slama has 2 saves in his first 6 games, 7.1 innings, with a 2.45era, 0.41WHIP and 10K/1BB.  Aussie Brad Tippett has also been excellent out of the pen.  In 5 games, 8.0 innings, Brad has 1 save with a 1.13era, 0.88WHIP while he also has 10K/1BB.  Steven Hirschfield was a 9th round pick out of San Diego State in this year's draft.  Hirschfield has appeared in 3 games, 13.0 innings, with a 1-1 record, 2.77era, 0.62WHIP and 10K/0BB.  

Greg Yersich continues to lead the team with a .429Ave and .500OBP in 42 at bats.  Recent signee Chris Cates is also hitting .429, however, in only 7 at bats.  Recent Player of the Week Rene Leveret cooled a bit this week and is now hitting .306Ave with a team leading 3 home runs and 22 rbi in only 62 at bats.  This year's 19th round pick Ben Petsch out of Belmont U is a catcher who has been playing in several positions including the outfield and first base.  Petsch is hitting .349Ave in 43 at bats.  Shortstop Starling De Los Santos is a 20 year old Latin player who has been one of the better hitting shortstops in the organization...with a current average of .301 with 19 rbi, 2 triples and 6 stolen bases in 6 attempts.

GCL Twins (Rookie) (4-2, 10-4)

The Twins had an excellent week and now have a sole hold on first place with a 1.0 game lead over the Orioles.

Daniel Berlind, who is a 19 year old 2007 7th round pick out of Los Angeles Pierce College, has a 2-0 record in 3 games, 15.0 innings, with a 0.00era, 0.73WHIP and 15K/8BB.  There have been reports that Berlind has been promoted to Elizabethton.  Aussie Liam Hendriks has a 1-1 record in 3 games, 11.2 innings, with a 2.31era and 5K/4BB.  Santos Arias has a 1-0 record, 12.0 innings, 2.25era, 0.50WHIP and 11K/1BB.  Danny Rondon is the team closer who has 3 saves in 7 appearances (8.0 innings) with a 1-0 record, 0.00era, 1.13WHIP and 6K/2BB.  

Recent first round pick Ben Revere is hitting .294Ave in 51 at bats with a team leading 10 rbi, 2 triples and 2 stolen bases in 3 attempts.  Infielder Jeanfried Brito is hitting .302Ave in 53 at bats.  Third baseman Juan Richardson is another Latin player who is hitting .364Ave in 55 at bats with 4 doubles.  Brito and Richardson are tied for the team lead with 11 runs scored.

Featured Player of the Week

Most weeks there are several players who have had excellent weeks worthy of consideration for the Player of the Week selection.  Although several players had excellent weeks this week, one player stepped onto the mound last Saturday and said I don't care if I was the Player of the Week two weeks ago...I want it again this week.  

With a 7-inning complete game no-hitter on Saturday June, 30, Yohan Pino made this weeks selection a lock.  On a night that the Miracle had a scheduled double header (both games are scheduled for only 7 innings) as a make up of the prior nights rainout, Pino pitched 7.0 innings with 0 hits, 0 runs and 7K/4BB in the Miracle's 7-0 win.

For the season, Pino has a 3-3 record in 18 games (9 starts), 63.2 innings, with 43 hits, 12 runs (11 earned), 59K/17BB for a 1.55era and 0.94WHIP.  

Pino is that rare player who is as comfortable pitching out of the bullpen or as part of the starting rotation.  Last year Pino entered the Beloit rotation late in the season, compiling a 14-2 record with a 1.91era.  This season Pino has a 0-0 record in 9 games (12.2 innings) out of the bullpen with a 0.71era, 0.85WHIP, 14K/4BB with hitters hitting for only a .136Ave.  As a starter, Pino has a 3-3 record in 9 games (51.0 innings) with a 1.76era, 0.67 WHIP, 45K/13BB with hitters hitting for a .199Ave.

Although Oswaldo Sosa may be the Miracle Ace based on his performance in the starting rotation since the beginning of the season, Yohan Pino is pitching as well as any pitcher for the Miracle or in the entire organization with this week's no hitter clearly earning him recognition as the Featured Player of the Week.        


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