Twinkie Town 2012 Top 50...Round 50d!

In our final preliminary round for our 50th spot, we will be voting on nine pitchers who were with Elizabethton and the GCL Twins last year. The winners of the four preliminary rounds will then compete for the last spot in this year's poll.

The first five included were all at Elizabethton last summer. Cole Johnson is an older college player taken in the 44th round in 2012. He was 1-1 with a 2.14 ERA in 21.0 innings with 22 strikeouts and 8 walks. Solid numbers, but at 23 he will have to make the Beloit roster out of spring training. Derek Christensen was a lower round college pick in 2010. He was one of Elizabethton's most effective pitchers with a 5-2 record and 2.84 ERA in 19 games (six starts) with 61 strikeouts in 57.0 innings. Stephen Evans was the Twins 13th round pick. He finished with a 3-1 record and 1.54 ERA in 23.1 innings with 24 strikeouts. Stephen Gruver, who was last springs 7th round pick, was 1-0 with a 3.45 ERA in 31.1 innings with 32 strikeouts. Tim Atherton was with the GCL Twins several years ago before being released for an off field incident. The Twins resigned the 21 year old Aussie this year. He finished with a 3-0 record and 1.50 ERA in 24.0 innings with 29 strikeouts and only 5 walks.

The next four were all excellent young pitchers with the GCL Twins, Hung-Yi Chen (18 years old), Luis Nunez (19), Geraldo Ramirez (17) and Markus Solbach (19). Chen, who is from Taiwan, started ten games, finishing with a 0-4 record and 4.33 ERA in 35.1 innings with 38 strikeouts and only 5 walks. In his second season with the DCL Twins, Nunez pitched like a young man who could be special. He had a 5-0 record with a 1.67 ERA and 0.90 WHIP in 16 games (32.1 innings) with 37 strikeouts and only 6 walks. Ramirez is a Mexican who signed last year. He had a 0-0 record with a 3.12 ERA in 17.1 innings as a seventeen year old. Markus Solbach completes our International Tour as he hails from Germany. He was 3-3 with an excellent 1.91 ERA in 28.1 innings.

The tenth pitcher I thought should be included is last year's 16th round pick, Austin Malinowski. Malinowski, who is from the Twin Cities area, was considered the top prospect in Minnesota last year. He signed too late to see any action last summer.

This round will remain open through tomorrow morning when I will post our run-off for the 50th and last spot in this year's poll.

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