Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Tuesday, May 6th

Twins Talk
Minnesota 16-14 First Place
  • Twins had the day off yesterday and get ready to begin a 3 game series with the White Sox in Chicago game time is at 7:10 with Nick Blackburn getting the start vs Gavin Floyd of the White Sox.

Rochester Wrap

Columbus 7 Rochester 6

Rochester 14-18 8.0 games back

  • POG: Francisco Liriano- I know this is going to surprise some people that i picked him, but let me explain. Francisco had been getting progressively worse start after start and his control was getting worse and worse. Last night was not a great performance but he stopped the decline and accomplished a few things. Liriano went 5 innings and gave up a run on 2 hits while walking 4 and striking out 4. The walks are still too high but 3 of his 4 walks happened in the first 2 innings so he really settled down the last 3. The first 2 innings got his pitch count way up and he was still able to finish 5 innings. With Liriano it is baby steps and he accomplished his first step back to being the pitcher we all remember him as. With the 1 run in 5 innings it lowered Liriano's era to 5.40 on the season and i look for it to continue to go down every start.
  • First off i want to congratulate Darnell Mcdonald for winning IL player of the Week honors for last week. Last night he acted like he wants to win it again going 2-3 with his 4th homerun of the year along with 4 rbi's and 2 runs scored to raise his team high batting average to .362 on the season. If he keeps this up who knows maybe he will get a call to the Twins before the seasons over.
  • The Red Wings for the first time in a long time had a rough outing led by Closer Tim Lahey who gave up a 6-1 8th inning lead. He was helped by fellow reliever Mariano Gomez as the Red Wings blew a game they should of won. Tim gave up 4 runs on 4 hits in only 2/3 of an inning to get the loss. With the 4 runs it raises Tim's era to 5.87 on the season. Im not too worried about Tim he had been phenomenal and will come back next time and shut the door like he usually does.
  • Tonight, the Red Wings continue their series with Columbus in Columbus. Gametime is at 6:05 with Philip Humber returning to the starting rotation and getting the start for the Redwings.

New Britain Business

New Britain 5 Bowie 4

New Britain 17-12 1.5 games back

  • POG:Matt Moses- Matt seems to be coming out of his early season funk as he went 1-3 with his first homerun of the season, along with 2 rbi's and 2 runs scored to raise his average to .278 on the season. Matt had been hitting good all season but he wasn't hitting with the power that we are all used to seeing out of him. I really think he popped the cork and will start hitting homeruns like crazy now and he will be going back to being the player that we forseen out of him. The thing about it is he was hitting well so if he can add the power aspect back to his game it will mean big things for the Rock Cats.
  • Erik Lis had a big 2 out rbi double in the bottom of the 8th and Ben Julianal came in the 9th to close it out as the Rock Cats continued their season high winning streak to 7 games and come within a game and a half of first place.
  • Yohan Pino was decent he went the first 6 innings and gave up 3 runs on 8 hits for a quality start. With the 3 runs it raises Yohan's era to 2.32 on the season. It was not a bad start at all we were just getting used to alot more out of him as he came into the game with a 1.80 era going in so we expect more. I think he will rebound next time and give us the start all Rock Cat fans have come to expect out of him.
  • Tonight, the Rock Cats continue their series with Bowie in New Britain. Gametime is at 5:35pm with Ace Ryan Mullins getting the start for the Rock Cats as they try to extend their season high winning streak to 8 games.

Fort Myers Musings

Daytona 9 Fort Myers 1

Fort Myers 18-13 First Place

  • POG: Cole Devries- Cole had his best start of the season last night by far by going 7 innings and giving up only 2 runs on 7 hits while walking 1 on the night. With the 2 runs allowed it lowered Cole's era to 4.58 on the season. I was really impressed with Cole last night and he got ahead of the hitters and threw strikes as the case with only 1 walk in 7 innings. I really think this is the beginning of some good things for Cole who i expect will contribute to the good pitching of the entire Miracle staff
  • The Miracle's bullpen was horrible last night giving up 7 runs and 7 hits in only 2 innings of work. Zack Day was the worst giving up 4 runs and 6 hits in only 1 inning of work. Danny Hernandez was not much better giving up 3 runs on only 1 hit however he walked 3 batters in his inning of work. You can tell they are the weak links in that great Miracle bullpen and they need to step up or they will have trouble getting work in this season because Beloit has good people in the bullpen too so they may be looking for their job.
  • Danny Valencia had another good game going 2-4 to raise his average to .297 on the season. Danny had a small slump but has come back with a vengence and has his average almost up 300 and has 27 rbi's in only 31 games and i expect him to continue and have a awesome year.
  • Tonight, the Miracle continue their series with Daytona in Fort Myers. Gametime is at 6:05 with staff ace Jeff Manship getting the start for the Miracle.

Beloit Beat

Beloit 4 Lansing 2

Beloit 13-18 9.0 games back

  • POG:Garrett Olson- Garrett had an outstanding game going 2-5 with 2rbi's. With the 2 hits it raises Garrett's average to .295 on the season. Garrett has done a nice job of filling in at 3rd base since Deibinson Romero went down with a knee injury. When Romero comes back Garrett will go back to the outfield and first base and do just as good out there. The thing i like about Olson is how flexible he is he can play any position and do it very well. I look for him to continue to improve defensively and offensively to help the Snappers get more wins.
  • The Snappers good starting pitching continued as Santos Arias made his 2nd straight good start. Santos went 5 innings to pick up his first win and allowed 2 runs on 4 hits while striking out 5 to bring his era to a very good 1.64 on the season.
  • Ben Revere continued his hot start with the Snappers going 2-4 with a triple and 2 runs scored to pace the Snappers offense. I thought he would be good for the Snappers but i was not expecting this type of start for Ben and only shows you that the Twins know how to draft and he may be the next in a long line of good outfielders drafted by the Twins organization.
  • Today, the Snappers continue their series with Lansing in Lansing. Gametime is at 9:35 this morning and David Bromberg gets the start for the Snappers.

Beloit Snappers

In part 5 of my series on the Twins organization for the month of April i will be looking at the Beloit Snappers. Beloit went 10-16 for the month of April and did some good things and some things they need to work on

  • Starting Pitching: The Starting Pitching has really struggled so far this season and the team looked at it as a strength and it has not happened so far. The Snappers starting ERA for the month was 3.60 but for the most part the majority of the starters really struggled. One of the only guys that was outstanding just went out with an injury and is on the disabled list and that is Mike Mccardell. Mike went 0-1 with a 2.53 era in 4 starts to lead the staff. David Bromberg who everybody thought was going to be the leader went 1-2 5.70era and Michael Tarsi another ace went 0-6 with a 6.75 era. That kind of tells how bad things have been pitching for the Snappers and they don't have enough hitting to pick up for the pitchers and if they dont pick it up it will be a long season. The last few starts have shown improvement and that is why the Snappers record has improved. GRADE: D+

  • Relief Pitching- The Relief Pitching for the Snappers has been excellent with a relief pitcher ERA of 2.79 era on the season. They have been led by Spencer Steedley's 1.83era and Charles Nolte's 1.29era. Also helping out has been Loek Van Mil's 3.09era. There have been a few disappoinments in Blair Erickson with a 4.91era and Bradley Tippett 4.50. When you have Steedley, Nolte and Van Mil if you have a lead in the late innings your going to win. The bullpen is the most dynamic in the MSL and if the starters can get them the ball they are going to win. GRADE: A

  • Hitting: This is an interesting thing to look at because the hitters have really struggled this year and don't seem to be getting any better. They were led by Steve Singelton who hit .330 with 2 homeruns and 13 rbi's. Chris Parmalee has been up and down as he went through a 2-32 slump and ends the month at .247 with 6homeruns and 23rbi's. Losing Deibinson Romero early in the month really hurt the hitting of the team hopefully he can come back soon and get back to what he did last year. The Wildcard has to be 2007 First Round pick Ben Revere who came up with the Snappers last month and has produced hitting .406 in 8 games. He is a dynamic hitter if he can continue it it will really help out the Snappers offense. The guy that i have been really disappointed in is Joe Benson who is only hitting .228 with 2 homeruns and only 7 rbi's along with 37 strikeouts in 26 games thats just not good enough. Another guy i have been disappointed in is Ozzie Lewis who was only hitting .091 before Revere arrived and has saw his playing time go away . Im not sure if its an injury or what but Ozzie has not played in a while and thats the only way he is going to come out of his slump is by playing so hopefully see him in there soon. Overall the hitting has been a real disappointment but since the arrival of Revere it seems to be getting better so hopefully they can keep it coming. GRADE: D-

  • Defense: Defense has not been the Snapper's strong point this year with 44 errors in 26 games. They were led in errors by 8 from Ramon Santana and everybody that has played much has contributed to the terrible defense. If they dont get better defense it doesn't matter how good they pitch or hit t hey will lose games and they are too good of players to make dumb errors like that so i look for the team defense to improve alot but right now its not very good. GRADE: F

  • Baserunning: The Snappers have been decent running the bases with 45 stolen bases in 26 April games. They have alot of speed and have taken advantage of it led by Marc Dolenc's 7 and Joe Benson, Garrett Olson, and Ramon Santana with 6. I think they should be running more with the speed they have. But they are in most games so they have the ability to steal bases so they should steal 2 to 3 bases a game. Grade B

  • Overall: The Snappers have done some good things and some things that they need to work on to contend for a division title. They have pitched really good lately and need to continue that, but if they dont play better defense it won't matter how good they pitch. I think they have some talented players but i would like to see some of their talented players take the next step in their careers and make the Twins move they up. The Twins raised some guys up to Beloit and I want to see if they are ready to take that step and help the Snappers get back into playoff contention because they have really talented players. Grade D

  • Player of the Month: Steve Singelton- Steve was the most consistant player for the Snappers in April. He hit .330 with 2 homeruns and 13 rbi's. He also had 2 doubles and a triple. He needs to work on his Defense but if he continues to produce offensively he will be with the Twins in a couple of years.

  • Pitcher of the Month: Spencer Steedley- Spencer was the best pitcher on the staff for the Snappers always shutting down the oppostition when he came in with the lead. For the Month Spencer went 1-1 with a 1.83 era. He also walked 8 while striking out an awesome 27 batters in 19.2 innings of work. The bullpen for the Snappers has been the strongpoint and it has been led by Spencer who has put together a great month and i think he will keep it going all year long.