Between Friday and Saturday five players in the Minnesota Twins system were involved in moves. One of the transactions resulted in the 2013 debut of a pitcher that once figured to be a key part of the major league rotation.
Fort Myers placed LHP Matt Tomshaw on the 7-day DL. Minnesota’s 42nd round pick in the 2011 draft put up impressive numbers in his first two seasons thanks in no small part to just 23 walks in 131.1 innings. This season his WHIP has jumped three tenths of a point as he’s allowed 10.9 hits per nine innings pitching for Cedar Rapids (30.0 IP) and more recently for the Miracle (43.2 IP). Between the two stops he has a 4.89 ERA, 1.43 WHIP and 53-16 SO-to BB.
With Tomshaw hitting the disabled list, Fort Myers activated OF Evan Bigley. The 26-year old 2008 10th rounder has hit 0.242/.329/.389 in 40 games with stints with Rochester (19 G), New Britain (11 G), the GCL Twins (7 G) and now the Miracle (3 G). He’s 2-12 thus far in the Florida State League but one of his two hits was a solo home run on Sunday.
RHP Nick Blackburn continues to work his way back from January wrist surgery and after three starts in the GCL (13.0 IP, 15 H, 4 ER, 0 BB, 10 SO) was assigned to New Britain. Starting the game for the Rock Cats on Saturday he allowed 7 H, 5 ER and 2 BB with 2 SO in 4.2 innings. Hardly a start to build confidence in the eyes of a fan base that has watched Blackburn perform at a well below league average level for two of the past three seasons (that includes a disgusting 56 ERA+ in 2012).
Two players were assigned to the GCL Twins to start their rehab assignments on Saturday. 1B Mike Gonzales (25) was sent to the GCL by Fort Myers and RHP Alex Wimmers (24) was sent there by New Britain.
Gonzales went 1-3 with a solo home run and two strike outs in his first game action since April 22nd. He was hitting 0.238/.338/.476 with 4 HR, 10 BB and 17 SO in 18 games with the Miracle when he was lost for several months.
No disrespect to the 6’6″ hulking Gonzales, but Wimmers’ 2013 season debut is the much bigger story as he is far more important to the future of the organization. Taken 21st overall in the 2010 draft the Ohio State product has logged a mere 64.1 innings as a professional.
A complete, and bizarre, loss of control early on in 2011 limited him to just 41.2 innings that season. His elbow injury, which required Tommy John surgery last summer, cost him all of 2012 season aside from 0.2 innings in the GCL and 4.1 innings in the Easter League. Despite a very muddled and winding road Wimmers still has a chance to get his career on solid ground and reach the major leagues. To that end his season debut was certainly a success with 2.0 innings of shutout baseball. He allowed one hit, struck out two and didn’t walk a batter.