Changes or additions to the site

  • Updated 2018 Twins attendance on the “Attendance” page. 08/06/2018
  • I changed the name of the page I used to call “Linksville” to “Story Time” because the page was just not getting the number of reads that it should be getting in my opinion. There are many great articles and stories out there for you to check out about former Minnesota Twins players, coaches, managers, ballparks, etc. Stop by “Story Time” and I am sure you will find something that you have not seen before. Thank you!
  • Twins 2018 attendance numbers updated. 05/05/2018
  • Updated MLB Weekly Notes under Additional menu Selections. 05/05/2018
  • This Day in Twins History was off-line for some time as I worked to revamp it. I have been busy making changes and it is far from complete. I hope that I will be able to keep it current going forward. You can get to the new This Day in Twins History pages by clicking the red “This day in Twins History” button in the upper right-hand corner of the home page. 04/16/2018
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If you are a baseball fan you will love La VIDA Baseball

Not that long ago I ran across a site called La VIDA Baseball. La VIDA Baseball is produced in association with the National Baseball Hall of Fame, celebrates the past, present and future of Latino baseball through our own lens and voice.

If you are interested in Latin Baseball and legends of the past, current stars or future up and coming Latino stars than this site is for you. They publish new articles on a regular basis and the writers are very, very good. If you are a fan of baseball than you should check this site out and bookmark it. 

The Twins have had many Latino stars over the years and a lot of them have great stories written about them on this site. Here are just a few examples and there are many, many more.

ESCOBAR HUNTING FOR AN ARIZONA OCTOBER

TWINS’ ROSARIO WAS ALWAYS AN EARLY OVERACHIEVER

La Vida Voices: Tony Oliva’s Journey

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The San Francisco Giants finally even the score against the Minnesota Twins

The Minnesota Twins picked 30th in the June 2011 draft and in round one they selected shortstop Levi Michael. The Twins signed Michael to a $1.175 million dollar bonus and sent him directly to A+ Ft. Myers in 2012. At the end of the 2017 the Twins let him go after Michael peaked with 12 games at AAA Rochester. The New York Mets signed him and he is playing in AA ball this season.

The Twins had two supplementary first round picks for the loss of Orlando Hudson and Jesse Crain and at number 50 they took third baseman Travis Harrison and signed him for $1.050 million. Harrison spent three years (2015-2017) in AA Chattanooga and the Twins let him go and Harrison is playing Independent League ball this season.

The Twins used their other (number 55) supplementary pick to take and sign RHP Hudson Boyd from Bishop Verot High School in Ft. Myers for $1 million. Boyd lasted with Minnesota just three seasons and reached A- Cedar Rapids and was sent packing in November 2014 for his off the field issues and no one has bothered to take a chance on him. No longer in pro ball.

Round 2 – Twins select RHP Madison Boer. The Twins released Boer after the 2015 season when he peaked in AA Chattanooga. Boer is no longer in pro ball.

Round 3 – Twins select LHP Corey Williams. Williams got to AA Chattanooga in 2016 but the Twins let him go and he pitched for the St. Paul Saints in 2016-2017 but is no longer in pro ball.

Round 4 – Twins selected RHP Matt Summers. Summers also reached AA Chattanooga before being released in 2015 and no longer in pro ball.

Round 5 – Twins select shortstop Tyler Grimes and in his fourth season he played at A+ Ft. Myers. The Twins let him go and he is no longer playing pro ball.

Round 6 – The Twins selected outfielder Dereck Rodriguez, son of Hall of Fame catcher Ivan Rodriguez and signed him for $130,000. In 2014 Dereck Rodriguez switched to the mound. The Twins started him out as a reliever in his first season as a pitcher but used him as a starter after that. Rodriguez reached AA Chattanooga in 2017 but left the Twins organization as a free agent after the 2017 season ended and signed with the San Francisco Giants. 

Dereck Rodriguez

The Giants had Rodriguez start the season in AAA where in 9 starts he was 4-1 with a 3.40  ERA and 53 strikeouts in 50.1 innings with just 11 walks. He was called up to the big leagues and made his major league debut on May 29, 2018 in relief and pitched 3.1 innings and allowed four runs but only one earned in Colorado. His next appearance was as a starter against the Phillies and he pitched 6 innings allowing just one run and notched his first big league win.  This year Rodriguez has started 12 games and has a 2.25 ERA with a 6-1 record with 80 innings pitched and has 65 strikeouts and allowed only 61 hits. In his 12 starts Rodriguez has gone less than five innings just once. Rodriguez has been one of the most impressive rookie starters in all of baseball despite being allowed to reach minor-league free agency last fall by the Twins.

The Giants can count their found fortune later; for now, it’s enough that they’ve already received a huge contribution from Rodriguez and control him for six more seasons to come. It took 14 years but looks like the San Francisco Giants have finally gotten even for the A.J. Pierzynski trade they made with Minnesota back in November of 2003. That was the trade where the Giants acquired Pierzynski and cash for Boof Bonser, Joe Nathan and Francisco Liriano.

The only player the Twins got out of the 2011 draft that put on a Twins uniform was LHP Jason Wheeler and he appeared in 2 games throwing 3 innings before moving him to the Los Angeles Dodgers. I see no record of Wheeler pitching anywhere in 2018 so he may have put baseball in the rearview mirror.

The Twins had a terrible draft in 2011 but the Dereck Rodriguez story is a great one!

 

 

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Twins minor league players of the week – Royce Lewis & Edwar Colina

The Twins have named A+ Ft. Myers Miracle shortstop Royce Lewis and A- Cedar Rapids Kernels right-handed pitcher Edwar Colina as Twins minor league Player of the Week and Pitcher of the Week.

Royce Lewis – Credit Tom Hagerty MiLB.COM

Lewis, who was selected first overall in the 2017 MLB Draft, played seven games for the Miracle, hitting .345 (10-for-29) with a triple, two home runs, six RBI, five walks and a .457 on-base percentage. In 101 games this year between Cedar Rapids (75) and Ft. Myers (26) the 19-year old right-handed hitting shortstop is hitting .318 with an OPS .867 and has 12 home runs and 71 RBI not to mention 28 stolen bases.

Edwar Colina

Colina,21, started one game for the Kernels on Monday vs. Beloit, pitching 8.0 innings with two unearned runs, no walks and eight strikeouts, earning his sixth win of the season. For the year the 5’11” left-hander is 6-3 with just 64 hits allowed in 84.2 inning with 75 KO’s and 45 walks. The Caracas, Venezuela native was signed by the Twins as a free agent in September of 2015.

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Alex Kirilloff named player of the month in FSL

Alex Kirilloff credit Getty Images

Minor League Baseball announced the Player of the Month Award winners for each of the 16 leagues for the month of July. A+ Ft. Myers outfielder Alex Kirilloff led the Florida State League in average (.396), hits (40), total bases (62), extra-base hits (16), slugging (.614) and OPS (1.036) and he finished second in runs (20) and third in RBI (20). Kirilloff had 13 multi-hit games in July, including six straight, and had a 13-game hitting streak from July 13–29. He also won the Midwest League Player of the Month Award in May with Cedar Rapids. Kirilloff, 20, was selected by the Twins in the first round (15th overall) of the 2016 First-Year Player Draft out of Plum High School in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Is it possible that Kirilloff who turns 21 in November makes his first appearance in a Twins uniform in 2019? Don’t forget that he missed all of 2017 with TJ surgery and only has 635 AB’s on his professional resume.

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The Baseball Codes

I recently finished a baseball book called “The Baseball Codes” written by Jason Turbow with Michael Duca. This is not a new book, it was published back in 2011 and I ran across it at a book sale that I attend on a regular basis put on by a group called Friends of the Library of Hennepin County in Plymouth, Minnesota. Anyway, I ran across this hardcover book and bought it for the price of one dollar.

This book should not be confused with a book called “The Code” written by Ross Bernstein back in 2008 that covers the same subject matter that I also have in my library. Oddly enough, “The Code” has an image on the cover of Nolan Ryan fighting with Robin Ventura and the book that I wanted to bring to your attention “The Baseball Codes” starts out by the author saying in his introduction that his most memorable moment of the 1993 season was the Ryan/Ventura fight. A strange coincidence. Continue reading

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Twins minor league players of the week – Ryan Jeffers & Jhoan Duran

The Twins have named A- Cedar Rapids Kernels catcher Ryan Jeffers and A- Cedar Rapids Kernels right-handed pitcher Jhoan Duran as Twins minor league Player and Pitcher of the Week.

Ryan Jeffers

Ryan Jeffers, 21, played in seven games for the Kernels, hitting .423 (11-for-26) with five doubles, two home runs, six RBI and a .500 on-base percentage. Jeffers was selected by the Twins in the second round of the 2018 First-Year Player Draft out of UNC Wilmington and signed for a below slot $800,000. Jeffers started the season by playing for just over a month in 29 games with Elizabethton where he hit 3 home runs and had 16 RBI with a .458 OBP. Since his promotion to Cedar Rapids on July 24 he has played in 11 games and has 2 home runs and 9 RBI and is hitting .366. Mike Berardino recently wrote Second-rounder Ryan Jeffers laying quick claim to Twins’ ‘catcher of the future’, a good read.

Jhoan Duran

Jhoan Duran, 20, made the start on Monday at Quad Cities, pitching 7.0 shutout/no-hit innings with one walk and eight strikeouts in his first appearance in the Twins system. The 6’5″ and 175 pound Duran was acquired last week from Arizona in exchange for infielder Eduardo Escobar and is ranked as the Twins 23rd best prospect. The right-handed Duran from the Dominican Republic started in the Arizona system at the age of 17 is already in his fourth season of pro ball and won’t be 21 until January.

 

Twins Minor League Report 080518

 

 

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Twins on trading spree like none seen in many a year

In the last five days of July the Falvey/Levine regime traded five experienced players off their big league roster and acquired 12 players that includes five pitchers, 4 outfielders and 4 infielders. The departed players have appeared in 2,674 games and the pitchers have notched 160 wins. The acquired players have no wins by the pitchers in the big leagues and have played in a total of 899 big league games of which Logan Forsythe has 807.

I grant you that Brian Dozier and Eduardo Escobar were both going to be free agents at the end of the season. Lance Lynn has not performed up to expectations, Zach Duke performed pretty much as expected and Ryan Pressly was probably over-worked but was a decent relief pitcher. The team itself has under-performed dramatically but to be fair I think the same can be said of the Twins “on the field” management staff.  Continue reading

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Twins minor league players of the week – Donny Breek and Brent Rooker

The Twins have named GCL Twins right-handed pitcher Donny Breek and Double-A Chattanooga outfielder Brent Rooker as Twins minor league Pitcher and Player of the Week.

Donny Breek

Breek, 18, made two starts for the GCL Twins, going 1-0, 0.00 ERA (9.0 IP) with three hits allowed, four walks and 13 strikeouts. The Amsterdam native was signed to a seven-year deal by the Twins as a free agent last September.

Donny Breek signs with Twins

Brent Rooker

Rooker, who is winning this award for the third time this season (May 20 and June 10), hit .467 (14-for-30) with four doubles, three home runs, nine RBI, six walks and a .556 on-base percentage in seven games for the Lookouts. The 23-year old is putting together a solid season at Chattanooga and in 99 games is hitting .275 with a .862 OPS with 20 home runs and 66 RBI. He has struck out 120 times. Rooker was selected by the Twins 35th overall in the 2017 First-Year Player Draft out of Mississippi State University.

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Twins minor league players of the week – Alex Kirilloff & Kohl Stewart

The Twins have named High-A Ft. Myers Miracle outfielder Alex Kirilloff and AAA Rochester Red Wings right-handed pitcher Kohl Stewart minor league Player and Pitcher of the Week.

Alex Kirilloff

Kirilloff, the Twins 2016 first round pick (15th overall) who was in last week’s SiriusXM Future’s Game, played in five games for the Miracle, hitting .545 (12-for-22) with three doubles, one triple, one home run and six RBI. Kirilloff who won’t turn 21 until this November started the season in Cedar Rapids but after hitting .333 with 13 home runs and 56 RBI in 65 games was moved up to Ft. Myers and he has found the Florida State League to his liking. In 29 games he is hitting .370 with 3 home runs and 22 RBI in just 29 games. I would not be surprised to see him get a taste of AA ball at Chattanooga before the 2018 season winds down. A pretty impressive season for Kirilloff after sitting out all of 2017.

Kohl Stewart

Stewart, another first round pick and fourth overall in 2013 made two starts for the Red Wings, going 0-2, 1.50 ERA (12.0 IP, 2 ER) with four walks and 10 strikeouts. Stewart has been a bit of a disappointment so far in the sense that everyone expected more out of this right-hander since he was the fourth overall selection but we need to keep in mind that he is just 23 years of age. Stewart turned down a football and baseball scholarship at Texas A&M University to sign with the Twins.

The minor league report below has an article on the Twins experimenting with “Bullpenning”.

Twins Minor League Report 072318

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Minnesota Twins Top 10 First Baseman

Between 1961-2017 there have been 58 players that have played at least 10 games at first base for our Minnesota Twins. However, to qualify for this list which ranks them in Baseball-Reference WAR order the player must have played first base in at least 51% of their games while wearing a Twins uniform. This eliminates players like Rod Carew, Harmon Killebrew, Bob Allison and of course Joe Mauer who started playing first base later in their careers. Kent Hrbek is the Twins all-time leaders in games at first base with 1,609.

Kent Hrbek – Hrbek’s work in the field was as good as his work with a bat.

Results
Rk Player WAR/pos From To G AB R H HR RBI SB BA OPS
1 Kent Hrbek 38.6 1981 1994 1747 6192 903 1749 293 1086 37 .282 .848
2 Justin Morneau 23.3 2003 2013 1278 4749 669 1318 221 860 5 .278 .832
3 Don Mincher 8.7 1961 1966 590 1511 220 369 90 265 4 .244 .824
4 Doug Mientkiewicz 6.4 1998 2004 643 2147 273 590 43 266 11 .275 .776
5 Rich Reese 3.2 1964 1973 807 1918 238 498 50 241 16 .260 .711
6 Ron Jackson 2.8 1979 1981 344 1154 150 309 23 138 6 .268 .734
7 John Briggs 1.8 1975 1975 87 264 44 61 7 39 6 .231 .731
8 Vic Power 1.7 1962 1964 301 1197 151 333 26 116 10 .278 .703
9 Scott Stahoviak 1.0 1993 1998 344 1019 135 261 27 119 13 .256 .745
10 Pat Bourque 0.1 1974 1974 23 64 5 14 1 8 0 .219 .593
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 7/21/2018.

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Twins Top 10 Catchers

Twins Top 10 First Baseman

Twins Top 10 Second Basemen

Twins Top 10 Third Baseman

Twins Top 10 Shortstops

Twins Top 10 Center Fielders

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