Minor League Update…2 Months Into the Season

Hi Twins fans. We are about to finish up this West Coast trip, and hopefully the Twins will have a good series vs the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim before they return home for a 9 game homestand.

Let’s get started with some Twins news.

I’LL BET YOU DIDN’T KNOW THIS ABOUT LEW FORD…..Lew told me two stories that were news to me about the Twins outfielder. Once, while growing up in Texas and playing for his high school baseball team he once missed a game to participate in a scholastic playoff in math and science. "I just thought it was just as important to help out my academic teammates as my baseball teammates," explained Lew. I asked him how he did in the playoff and he said "not so hot," but we had fun. And Lew once played in a soccer tournament in London, England. "Our team got invited to play in this tournament and it was a blast," laughed Lew. Was Lew going to be a blossoming forward in soccer and not end up playing major league baseball?  "No way," stated Lew. "The soccer experience was fun, but I always wanted to play baseball, that was my favorite sport."

MINOR LEAGUE UPDATE:  Remember at the beginning of the season I listed two top ten lists? One was the top pitching prospects in the Twins organization, and the other was the top position player prospect list. Now that two months of the Twins minor league season is complete, let’s check and see how those top prospects are doing. 

In this blog we will review the pitchers.

1.  RHP Kyle Waldop….started the season at A-ball with the Fort Myers Miracle, and was just promoted to AA-ball New Britain.  He was 4-2 with a 2.86 ERA with the Miracle, and he’s struggling a bit with the RockCats. He has lost his first four decisions with NB and is 0-4.

2.  Anthony Swarzak….Started the season with New Britain and was 0-2 with an 11-ERA when he was suspended for 50 games when he tested positive using body enhancing substances. Hopefully Swarzak will return to the RockCats in late July.

3.  LHP Jay Swatski….Used out of the bullpen with the RockCats in Double-A, Swatski has appeared in 20 games and is 2-2.  He’s pitched 27-plus innings and has given up 30 hits.

4.  RHP Kevin Slowey….Recently promoted to the Twins and thrust into the Twins starting rotation. He put up fantastic numbers with AAA-Rochester and was 5-2 with a 1.54 ERA which led the Internation League.

5.  RHP Matt Garza….Doing just fine with the Red Wings. He’s 3-5 with a 3.19 ERA. The Twins seem to be pleased with his season thus far.

6.  LHP Glen Perkins….Started the season at Rochester and pitched (and started) in one game. Called up to the Twins to fill in in the bullpen. Currently on the disabled list with a strained left bicep. Should be back soon.

7.  RHP Tim Lahey….Was sharing closer time with Jose Mijares and now has taken over as the RockCats closer. He’s 5-0 out of the bullpen. In 31 innings pitched he has 28 strikeouts.

8.  LHP Erol Simonitsch…..Has yet to pitch and is in Fort Myers rehabbing with a left arm injury.  Missing out on a chance to climb up the ladder. Hopefully he will be back soon.

9. RHP Oswaldo Sosa…..In the Miracle starting rotation.  He is 2-3 with a
2.54 ERA.  Has made 11 starts and has pitched 56-plus innings. Doing OK.

10.  LHP Jose Mijares…..Recently promoted to AAA-Rochester.  Has pitched in 3 games in relief.  Started the year at AA-New Britain and in 15 games pitched, 21 innings with 22 strikeout.

Next blog I will update how the position players are progressing.

TWINS QUIZ….OK, Twins fans, put your Twins thinking cap on and see if you can answer this question.

For years, when Randy Bush was the co-holder (with Rich Reese) for most pinch-hits in a single season. Bush twice had 13 pinch hits in a single season and that was good enough to share the mark with Reese. But in 1993 this Twins player came along and was the Twins top pinch hitter for 4 straight years, and in 1996 he set a new mark for most pinch hits in a single season with 19.  Who is this former Twins player.  Hint:  He is presently a coach with the Arizona Diamondbacks.

I’ll have the answer for you in the next blog.

Now here?s the Answer to the Twins quiz from the last blog…

When Garrett Jones was called up last week and stepped to the plate for his first major league at-bat I pulled out my trusty little 3 X 5 card with the Twins players names that hit a home run in their first major league game.  All told their have been 8 that have accompolished that feat!  But just four that have hit a home in their first at-bat!  See if you can name the four.

Answer:
Rick Renick, Dave McKay, Gary Gaetti, and Andre David.

That’s all for this time Twins fans. Hope to see you at the Dome for the Twins upcoming homestand with Washington, Atlanta, and Milwaukee.

"Touch ’em All,"

JG

4 Comments

Hey guys, I just stumbled upon your blog and am very excited that we have some insider info on the team. You can’t find stuff like the Lew Ford stories anywhere else.

The answer to your trivia question is former Arizona Wildcat, Chip Hale.

Check out http://www.twinscards.com. We are the Ultimate twins fan and collector resource. I know you guys will love it. Thanks

Blake

John,

Any news on Rob Delaney, who seems to be on fire in the Midwest League? Will he be promoted, or will he get a full season in A-ball? It’s been a while since there has been a St. John’s University grad on the Twins. (Think Frank Viola.)

Thanks,

Dave

John:

I love to listen to the games on the radio. I think radio and baseball go together better than any other sport by a long shot.

But I also like to watch the games on TV while I am listening to you guys. Lately, on FSN TV, that has been a problem. The TV broadcast on FSN is delayed about four seconds for some reason (the radio and the TV are timed perfectly for the Sunday games on WFTC).

I have called AM 1500, but they say it is out of their hands. They are telling me it is the Twins organization that drives the bus.

John, I am sure I am not the only fan that likes to listen to the radio and watch the game on TV with the TV sound down. If there was some way you could get the two broadcasts syncronized, alot more people would be listening to you and Dan.

Bigtwinsfan

John, Kevin Slowey is my cousin

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