Notes from an Insomniac

10 Jun

also available at www.SethSpeaks.net -

Radio Update – I will be on KFAN and KFAN.com with Paul Allen at 9:20 talking about the Twins. Then at 10:05, I’ll be on The Jack Michaels Show on am710 in Bismarck, ND.

I should be sleeping. I really should. But, American Pickers is on The History Channel (yes, again). And I just can’t not watch it! After work on Wednesday, I met my sister and we went to the Twins game. Decked out in our Twins gear, we watched the game from the third deck, front row, and again, they were solid seats.  I decided to get something different, for me, to eat before the game started. So, I ordered up the Walleye Fingers and fries. It was actually not too bad, but rather filling. So, later in the game, I went back to the Nachos Grande. I was careful to only take bites when there was game action so that the FSN cameras would not catch me eating the nachos again. Live and learn. But aside from the food, it was a great night for outdoor baseball. When I got home, I had to spend time cleaning. I’m sorry ya’ll, it had to be done. But I don’t want to leave people hanging, so here are a few thoughts and links for the day: 

  • On Wednesday, the final twenty rounds of baseball’s draft were completed. So, what did the Twins do with their 50 draft choices? Here is the breakdown along with my quick thoughts:
    • 30 pitchers
      • 19 Right-handed pitchers, 11 Left-handed pitchers
      • 3 High School pitchers, 6 junior college pitchers, 21 four-year college pitchers.
  • 7 middle infielders
    • 4 high school, 1 JC, 2 four-year college
  • 6 outfielders
    • 3 high school, 1 JC, 2 four-year college
  • 4 corner infielders
  • 3 catchers
  • I actually really like the Day 3 strategy of the Twins. They took a bunch of college pitchers, several of them were college seniors. I thought it was a good strategy on several counts. First, the cliché “you never have enough pitching” is very true. Second, the Twins minor league system has had several injuries to good young pitching prospects including Matt Bashore, Ben Tootle, Bruce Pugh, Tom Stuifbergen, Brad Tippett and Bobby Lanigan. Those injuries have forced some really good prospects to be pushed beyond where they probably should be. Guys like Adrian Salcedo, BJ Hermsen, Michael Tonkin and Andrei Lobanov are pitching fairly well, but likely were going to start their season in Elizabethton. Simply put, the Twins need lots of pitchers to fill rosters.
  • The Twins took several outfielders and middle infielders. There are the athletes that can play those positions, but because they are athletes, they are more able to switch positions too as needed. More than half of them are high school players.
  • I think the summary of the Twins 2010 draft is simply that the Twins stood by their basic draft principles. They took the best player available on their board early. That meant college pitchers and high school hitters, for the most part. So, despite the run on college pitchers in the late rounds, the Twins remained consistent in their draft philosophy.
  • And the final thing to remember about any draft… it can’t be judged for at least eight to ten years. Someone like Alex Wimmers could be with the Twins in about two years. Someone like Niko Goodrum likely would not arrive in Minnesota for the next six years. If three or four of these fifty draft picks simply make the big leagues, that’s pretty impressive. If one of the players becomes an All-Star, that’s tremendous.
  • The Twins beat the Kansas City Royals 6-2.
    • Carl Pavano was excellent. He gave up two runs in the 3rd inning, but that was it as he made it through eight innings. In Pavano’s last nine starts, he has gone at least seven innings in eight of them. He has given up two runs in six of those nine starts.
    • Jon Rauch pitched a scoreless ninth inning. In his last six appearances, he is 5/5 in save opportunities and has only given up one run. Of course, he has given up at least one hit in each of those games.
    • Delmon Young gave the Twins an early 1-0 lead when he launched his sixth home run of the year. He is hitting .275 with six homers and 34 RBI already this season. He also has 13 walks this year after posting just 12 all of 2009. Sure, his Isolated Discipline is still just .041 this year, but it was just .024 last year. Beyond the walks, he just appears to be a new hitter.
    • Joe Mauer had a double to go with another single. The double scored Denard Span all the way from 1B.
    • Danny Valencia went 1-4 with a solid single to left field. He is now 7-22 (.318) through six games. But more impressive has been his defense. It’s early, but so far in his young career, I have been very impressed with his defense.
    • Tonight, it will be Scott Baker for the Twins against the Royals’ Bruce Chen at 7:10 as the Twins try to sweep a home series before beginning a wave of interleague play.
    • The Rochester Red Wings lost 8-0 to the Columbus Clippers.
      • Ryan Mullins started and gave up six runs (5 earned) on eight hits and a walk. Jose Lugo gave up two runs on three hits and a walk in three innings. He struck out five.
      • The Red Wings managed just four hits.
      • But Matt LaPorta, who was demoted by Cleveland just days ago, went 4-4 with three home runs.
      • The New Britain Rockcats lost 2-1 to Richmond.
        • Deolis Guerra made his first start with the Rockcats since returning from AAA Rochester. He gave up the two runs, but both were unearned. He allowed three hits, walked four and struck out three. He fell to 1-2 and reduced his ERA to 2.41.
        • Brandon Roberts went 3-4 with his third double.
        • I posted an update yesterday, but I wanted to mention again that Ben Revere will likely miss the next week. On Tuesday night, he was hit just above the eye by a ball and although the CT scan was negative, it is quite swollen. He was hit by a ball that was thrown by a middle infielder on a double play attempt.
        • The Ft. Myers Miracle beat Bradenton 3-2
          • The Miracle had just six hits.
          • Shooter Hunt made the start and gave up two runs on six hits in six innings. He walked three and struck out five.
          • Jose Gonzalez gets the win after two shutout innings. Billy Bullock recorded the save with a perfect ninth.
          • The Beloit Snappers beat Dayton 8-4.
            • Angel Morales went 2-3 with two walks, his 11th double and his fourth home run.
            • James Beresford went 2-4 with a walk, his second triple and his seventh stolen base.
            • Mike Gonzales went 2-4 with his third double.
            • Wang-Wei Lin went 2-5.
            • Danny Rams started at catcher, but he was hit in the arm during his first plate appearance and had to leave the game. Tobias Streich was sick and unavailable. So Josmil Pinto, who began the game as the DH, had to enter the game as the catcher, and the DH was lost.
            • That meant that starter Miguel Munoz had to hit for himself. He fared well, going 1-2 before being pinch hit for. Munoz went the first six innings and gave up four runs on seven hits. He walked one and struck out three.
            • Eliecer Cardenas went two innings and did not allow a run despite allowing two hits and walking one. Matt Tone threw a scoreless ninth inning.
            • Beloit Trip – Travis Aune and I will be in Beloit for the games on Friday night and Saturday night, so stop by and say hi.

What else is going on in the world of baseball? Feel free to post your comments and questions in the Comments section.

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6 Responses to “Notes from an Insomniac”

  1. Brian June 10, 2010 at 4:20 am #

    Took my 2nd Beloit trip in 3 weeks Wednesday (10 hours of driving in one day!). Asked Stuifbergen about his elbow and he said they didn’t find anything on the MRI. Beresford continues to impress me at bat and in the field. Hicks made a nice diving catch late in the game. Going to Cedar Rapids next week to watch Snappers play Kernels & Mike Trout before he gets promoted.

  2. TT June 10, 2010 at 7:50 am #

    Seth -

    I think the real measure of a draft’s success is the contribution players make at the major league level. For that reason, how many players just make an appearance is not a good measure. A draft that produces even one major league regular is better than a draft that produces a bunch of guys whose major league career consists of brief call-ups.

    After the first 100 players in the draft, there are very few productive major league players. There are only four players on the Twins who were drafted later than that – Valencia, Tolbert, Blackburn and Kubel. The later rounds of the draft are mostly filling out minor league rosters and providing emergency spare parts at the major league level.

    Of course the margin for winning in the big leagues is often pretty thin, as the Twins have shown the last couple years. Spare parts are important. They probably wouldn’t have been in the playoffs without the play of Matt Tolbert last fall. So you can’t discount the later rounds or the marginal players they usually produce entirely. But a draft that just produces a handful of Matt Tolbert’s is not a success.

  3. thrylos98 June 10, 2010 at 9:12 am #

    One interesting thing is that this year the Twins drafter 2 players who they drafted last year but declined to sign. One is Carlos Gutierrez’ brother, David, in the 18th vs 34th round (2009) who is a 5 year senior and will probably sign. The second one is LeAndre Davis (aka Clarence Davis) who they selected in the 13th round out of high school last year but he opted to go to Junior College. There he really did not perform and lost his starting SS job. The Twins liked him enough to sign him again (but this time in the 49th round, thus costing him $). It will be interesting to see whether he signs, but his college career (at least in his current place, Georgia Perimeter JC, seems all but over

  4. Twinlves June 10, 2010 at 10:41 am #

    Where do you think Sano would have been drafted? Would he even be old enough yet?

    And I think that was Delmon’s 7th hr.

  5. Gill Master June 10, 2010 at 1:42 pm #

    There are actually some good internet articles written by various local newspapers on some of the Twins draft picks. If you just google their names you’ll find reaction to the draft from Pat Dean, Nate Roberts, Lance Ray, and 11th rounder Travis Kuresa. All interesting reading and maybe someone wiser than me (like Seth) can link them.

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