Minnesota’s system was the scene for six transactions on Monday. Included among those were a pair of rehab assignments, a suspension, and promotions for two of the organization’s young starting pitchers. The sixth player involved in a move was placed on the 7-day disabled list.
Sent on rehab assignment to Rochester (from Minnesota): OF Josh Willingham (34) – is hitting 0.224 with the Twins this season but thanks to his ability to coax a walk (39), and hit the occasional home run (10), his 0.356 OBP and 0.398 SLG give him an above average OPS+ (109). That’s little consolation to Minnesota as his season’s 0.754 OPS is at the lowest point of his career since he became an major league regular in 2007. Not only is it at a new low, it’s a full 56 points off from his next worst season. Willingham is a better hitter than he’s shown and 2013 and he figures to improve those slash stats when he finally returns to the Twins lineup. He went 0-6 in his first two games with the Red Wings on Monday and Tuesday but hit a solo home run today and also has a walk in two of the three games. Willingham’s last at bat with the Twins was back on June 30th and his return can’t come soon enough.
Placed on the 7-day DL by Rochester: OF Antoan Richardson (29) – is hitting 0.294/.413/.388 this season between New Britain (33 G) and Rochester (69 G). To find a better season on his nine-year minor league resume you have to go all the way back to 2005. That year he was fresh out of the June draft (35th round) and hitting 0.321/.465/.378 as a 21-year old for the AZL Giants. Prior to landing on the disabled list this week, Richardson had been slumping with a 0.216 average in his last 10 games and his slash stats for July – 0.260/.330/.365 – reveal that he was having his worst month of the 2013 season. With Willingham, Mastroianni and Wilkin Ramirez on their way back to the Twins roster, his chances of returning to the majors for the first time since 2011 appear to be slim and his injured ankle isn’t helping matters.
Assigned to Rochester (from New Britain): LHP Pat Dean (24) – by the numbers didn’t seem likely to get moved up to Triple-A. After all his 4.68 ERA, 1.34 WHIP and 61-17 SO-to-BB in 125.0 IP hardly smacked of a successful campaign. Of course the same could have been said when he moved up from Fort Myers. Baseball however is a crazy game, and following suit Dean allowed just two hits over 7.0 shutout innings in his Triple-A debut on Monday.
Assigned to New Britain (from Fort Myers): RHP Matthew Summers (23) – scuffled in a three game, Double-A stint at the end of June but his troubles didn’t follow him back to the FSL. In fact after he returned to the Miracle he allowed just one earned run, 20 hits and eight walks in 35.2 innings while striking out 26. Back on the mound for the Rock Cats on Tuesday he turned in a quality start (6.0 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 3 SO) and began to chip away at his 5.54 Eastern League ERA.
Suspended (?) by Fort Myers: LHP Chad Rodgers (25) – was limited to just 7.2 IP between the 2011-2012 seasons in the Braves organization. This year, his first year in the Twins system, he’s thrown 43.0 innings of relief with a 4.19 ERA, 1.56 WHIP and 32 SO. On the transaction report it was listed as an amorphous “status change” but from what I can tell he’s been suspended, though I can not ferret out the cause of said suspension.
Sent on rehab assignment to the GCL Twins (from Rochester): RHP Cole De Vries (28) – has an 8.19 ERA in nine Triple-A starts which span a meager 43.0 innings this year. On top of yielding nearly an earned run for every inning pitched with the Red Wings, he’s given up 75 hits. It’s a far cry from what was expected of him in 2013, but on the bright side he did throw 3.0 hitless GCL innings with four strikeouts on Monday.
August 6th was transaction free!