Twinkie Town 2011 Top 50...Prospect #50!

After being in the hunt the last couple rounds, Shooter Hunt was selected as the Forty-Ninth best prospect in this year's poll with 70 of 196 votes. Martire Garcia was second with 50 votes while Ben Tootle was third.

I want to make certain that we get as many of the prospects into this voting as we can. Therefore, the final 50th round will begin with four preliminary rounds. The winners (and ties) of these four rounds will then compete in the final voting for Round 50.

The first of the preliminary rounds will include ten pitchers from Rochester, New Britain and Ft. Myers. The next round will be ten pitchers from the rookie league teams and Beloit. The third and fourth rounds will include ten position players each from the same teams. I will briefly comment on each of the players we are voting on today after the jump.

This round will remain open through 3pm, Wednesday, February 16th.

Steve Blevins was the Twins 21st round pick in 2008. After an excellent 2009 at Beloit (3.52 ERA in 76.2 innings), Blevins moved from Beloit to Ft. Myers to New Britain this year. He finished with a 5-4 record in 49 games (80.0 innings) with a 4.28 ERA and 54 strikeouts.

Cole DeVries is a former Gopher and Eden Prairie native who signed as a free agent in 2006. DeVries had been an effective starter until a difficult 2009 at New Britain when he was 7-14 with a 4.84 ERA. This past year, DeVries worked mostly out of the bullpen with a 5.79 ERA at New Britain and 23.1 innings late in the year at Rochester.

Over the last three years, Jhon Garcia has consistantly been one of the organization's best relievers. He began this year in Beloit before moving up to Ft. Myers. Garcia appeared in 33 games (69.0 innings) with a 2-3 record, 2.87 ERA, 42 strikeouts and 23 walks.

After his assignment to the AFL in 2009, Steve Hirschfeld had been considered one of the organization's better starter/long reliever prospects. Unfortunately, an early season injury limited him to 15 games (32.0 innings) last year with a 5.63 ERA. To get back on track, Hirschfeld joined Mayaguez of the Puerto Rican League this winter where he appeared in 11 games (48.1 innings) with an excellent 3.72 ERA.

Michael McCardell was named the Twins Minor League Player of the Year by USA Today following his excellent 2008 season at Beloit. He would move up to New Britain late in 2009, where he had a 5-2 record with a 4.10 ERA in 48.1 innings. McCardell had a tough season last year as did most of the Rock Cats squad. He led the team with 150.0 innings, however, had a 3-13 record with a 5.28 ERA.

Had Ryan Mullins not been injured late last summer, he may have been the pitcher called up by the Twins rather than Matt Fox. Mullins pitched only 90.0 innings with a 4-7 record, 4.10 ERA as a starter, 58 strikeouts and 26 walks.

The Twins obtained Chris Province from the Red Sox in return for Boof Bonser. Province spent most of last season as New Britain's closer before making a few spot starts for the Rock Cats and late in the season at Rochester. He would finish with a 6-8 record, 5.66 ERA, 62 strikeouts and 39 walks in 97.0 innings.

After spending his fall in Arizona in 2009, Spencer Steedley was looking forward to maybe getting all the way to Minnesota in 2010. After all, he just may be the top left handed reliever in the higher levels of the organization. Steedley would miss most of last season to an injury, pitching in only 10 games (18.0 innings) with a 3.00 ERA and 19 strikeouts.

Michael Tarsi returned to Ft. Myers last year where he started 18 games (98.2 innings) with a 5-10 record, 5.02 ERA, 70 strikeouts and 36 walks.

Brad Tippett has had several periods during his career where he looked like a future middle of the rotation starter for the Twins. Unfortunately, the young Australian can't put together back-to-back seasons without a visit to the disabled list. After an excellent 2009 at Beloit when he was 9-8 with a 3.21 ERA, Tippett appeared in only 12 games last summer (32.0 innings) as he again battled injuries.

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