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The Twins were on the good side of a blowout on Friday night. Meanwhile, down on the farm, all four affiliates played some close, very exciting games, so be sure to read all of those game stories below.
Let’s start first with the Twins. The Twins had a game last night like they really needed. It was fun to watch a game in which the Twins were the team to jump out to an early lead. With Tim Wakefield taking Daisuke Matsuzaka’s scheduled start, the Twins jumped to an early lead. Trevor Plouffe, batting second in the Twins lineup, hit a long shot over the Green Monster for his first home run, in his first at bat of the season. The Twins scored three more in the second inning. Denard Span drove in two runs with a hit. Later Ben Revere scored on a balk by Wakefield that Red Sox manager, Terry Francona, didn’t necessarily agree with. He was ejected. JD Drew hit a solo homer in the bottom of the second, and Adrian Gonzalez hit one over the Monster to cut the lead to 4-2 after four innings. But in the Top of the 5th, the Twins broke it open. Danny Valencia came up with the bases loaded, and drilled a double off the Monster that scored two runs. Drew Butera hit a hard grounder that the shortstop, Jed Lowrie, booted after being screened on the play by Valencia. All told, the game was now 8-2. Alfredo Aceves then balked in one more run on one of the most obvious balk calls ever. It was as is he started his delivery and forgot where he was and what he was doing.
Plouffe was 2-4 with a walk, that home run and a stolen base that directly let to a run. Valencia, Denard Span, Michael Cuddyer each had two hits.
Scott Baker was tremendous again. He gave up two runs on seven hits in eight innings. Both runs came on solo home runs. He walked just one and struck out eight. He gave up eight runs in 11 innings in his first two starts. He walked six and struck out nine. In his four starts since, he has given up five runs in 28.1 innings. He has walked four and struck out 25 strikeouts. Joe Nathan walked one in a scoreless ninth.
On Saturday, the Twins have a noon start. Brian Duensing (2-1, 2.91 ERA, 1.26 WHIP, .264 BAA) will face off against Clay Buchholz (2-3, 4.81 ERA, 1.78 WHIP, .311 BAA).
The Twins blew out Boston for their first win at Fenway Park since 2007. Down in the minor leagues, the games were much, much closer!
Minor League Notes
Best wishes to Allan de San Miguel. The Australian catcher found the he has a torn UCL. He is expecting to find out today whether he will have Tommy John surgery or the standard Twins determination to just ‘rest and rehab.’ If it’s a torn UCL, get the surgery done right away and start the rehab right away.
David Bromberg called me last night and we discussed his injury, surgery and rehab. Again, it was about ten days ago that he was pitching his best game of the year when a line drive came back at him. He put up his arm to protect himself and broke his ulna. He could have done the ‘rest and rehab’ thing too, but was told he could be back and pitching sooner if he had surgery. So, earlier this week, he had the surgery and had five screws put into his arm. The surgery went well, and Bromberg is now in Ft. Myers where he will be in a cast the next two weeks. He’ll be on a throwing program and probably make a couple of rehab starts in EST and/or Ft. Myers.
Friday SethSpeaks.net Minor League Hitter of the Day– Steve Singleton, Rochester Red Wings
Friday SethSpeaks.net Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Bruce Pugh, Ft. Myers Miracle
Red Wings Ramblings
Friday – Red Wings 7, Gwinnett 5 – Before Thursday’s games, the Red Wings added Ray Chang and Steve Singleton. On Thursday, Chang played hero with a game-winning single. On Friday, it was Singleton’s turn to play hero. Eric Hacker made his first start since returning to the Red Wings. In 4.1 innings, he gave up one run (his first earned run allowed of the season) on four hits. He walked two and struck out three. Jeff Manship gave up two runs on three hits in 2.1 innings. Phil Dumatrait walked one in 1.1 scoreless innings. Anthony Slama gave up two unearned runs in the top of the 9th, to set the table. Steve Holm went 1-1 with three walks and drove in two runs with his single. Ray Chang went 2-4 with a walk and second double. Steve Singleton went 1-3 with a walk on Thursday. He started the Friday game 1-3 as well before he came to bat in the 8th inning. The Red Wings were down by a run and Singleton hit his first AAA home run to tie the game. Unfortunately Gwinnett scored those two unearned runs in the top of the 9th frame, but that just set the table. With two outs and two on, Singleton came to the plate again. This time, he hit a three-run game-winning, walk-off home run.
Kyle Gibson will start for Rochester on Saturday night (6:05 CT) against Gwinnett. Not certain who will start for the Braves. Julio Teheran (one of the top prospects in baseball) was supposed to start, but he was promoted to the Braves to make a spot start for Tim Hudson.
Rock Cats Report
Friday – Rock Cats 10, Portland 7 – Down 7-3 going into the 8th inning, the Rock Cats scored two in the 8th and five in the 9th to win this game. Dan Osterbrock made his first Rock Cats start, and it didn’t go as well as he would have hoped. He gave up seven runs on eight hits and two walks and two hit bats in 3.1 innings. Brett Jacobson threw 2.1 scoreless innings. He gave up a hit, walked two and struck out two. Spencer Steedley got four outs, two of them on strikeouts. Mike Tarsi walked two in a scoreless inning. Cole DeVries came on and pitched another scoreless inning for his seventh save. Michael Holliman went 2-4 with a walk. Chris Herrmann went 2-4 with his first two AA doubles. Chris Parmelee came up big. He was 3-5 with his third home run and four RBI. He had a two-run homer in the 8th, and he drove in another run with a single in the ninth. Evan Bigley went 2-5 with his seventh double. Bigley, Dan Rohlfing and Yangervis Solarte each had doubles in that five-run ninth inning.
Deolis Guerra and his 8.31 ERA will take the mound for the Rock Cats at noon on Saturday.
Friday – Miracle 4, Jupiter 3 (10) – Down 3-2 in the bottom of the 8th inning, Ramon Santana singled in Anderson Hidalgo with the tying run. Fast-forward to the bottom of the 10th. Hidalgo singled and advanced to 2B on wild pitch. Ramon Santana came to the plate again and singled in Hidalgo with the game-winning run. Hidalgo is now hitting .338 after he was 3-4 with a walk in this game. James Beresford is hitting .347 after going 2-5. Jhonathan Goncalves went 1-2 with two walks. Aaron Hicks was 1-3 with two walks. Ramon Santana went 2-5, but I think it’s fair to say that his two hits were both fairly important. Andrew Albers started and gave up three runs on six hits and two walks in four innings. Matt Tone then threw three shutout innings. Bruce Pugh gets the win after throwing three shutout innings, including four strikeouts.
On Saturday at 5:05 CT, Tom Stuifbergen will take the mound for the Miracle against Jupiter.
Friday – Snappers 3, Wisconsin 4 – Manuel Soliman started this game and gave up two runs on five hits. In five innings, he walked two and struck out seven. Michael Tonkin was charged with an unearned run in his two innings. Clint Dempster came in and gave up an unearned run on a walk and recorded just one out. Matt Hauser got the final five outs, three of them on strikeouts. The Snappers were without Danny Ortiz for this game (although he did pinch hit late in the game), so it should come as no surprise that they managed just six hits. Michael Gonzales drove in two runs, both on sacrifice flies. Lance Ray was 1-2 with a walk. Jamaal Hawkins hit his third double.
The Snappers travel to Cedar Rapids for a three game series. BJ Hermsen will take the mound to start for the team in the 5:35 game. You will recall that Hermsen is from a city about an hour from Cedar Rapids. Last year, he made a start in Cedar Rapids and took a no-hitter into the 9th inning.