Minnesota Twins MiLB Weekly Roundup: Single A Teams Keep Winning
Chattanooga Lookouts (8-12)
Daniel Palka, the man traded to the Twins for Chris Herrmann, is tearing it up. Ten hits in the last four games is just the beginning of his great start to the year. Slashing .338/.405/.563 in 71 at-bats, Palka leads the Lookouts in eight offensive categories.
Remember Palka from Spring Training? He hit two home runs in consecutive at-bats in his first game of the spring. He only came to bat six times but had three hits, all home runs. His swing is violent and aggressive, which is one of the causes for the high amount of strikeouts.
In past seasons Palka has played predominetly at first base while also playing in left and right field. So far he’s played all 14 games in right field. So the Twins remain hopeful that he still is primarily an outfielder.
Other Notables: Last year, he stole 24 bases to go along with his 29 home runs. It was the first season Palka stole more than 10 bases. One has to wonder if Palka is a 20-20 outfielder going forward. He has three home runs and one stolen base thus far.
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Fort Myers Miracle (12-9)
Nick Gordon, the fourth ranked prospect in the Twins system is starting the year on fire. He’s slashing .342/.373/.494 in 79 at-bats. The shortstop leads the Miracle in doubles (5), triples (2), RBI (9), and stolen bases (4).
While Gordon has led the offense, a quartet of pitchers have performed as good to start the year. Randy Rosario, Stephen Gonsalves, Kohl Stewart, and Felix Jorge all own sub 2.00 ERA’s.
The four pitchers have a combined 1.33 ERA. In dominate fashion, they have also combined for about 47 percent of the team’s strikeouts. Don’t sleep on the rest of the pitching staff. The entire group, with a few exceptions, has pitched outstanding to open the season.
Other Notables: Lost in the performances of Rosario, Gonsalves, Stewart, and Jorge is Tyler Jay. The first round pick last year hasn’t pitched nearly as well as the previous four. His ERA is above 5 and he’s given up an increasing amount of runs in each start. For what it’s worth, Jay didn’t start a game last season. There’s plenty of skepticism that he is a successful future starter. In his second season, it’s much too early to tell.
Cedar Rapids Kernels (11-9)
Two top 30 Twins prospects have started the season on complete opposite ends of the spectrum. LaMonte Wade, the No. 27 prospect, is off to a hot start. He is slashing .344/.400/.547 while leading the Kernels with 10 RBI.
On the flip side, Jermaine Palacios, the No. 20 prospect, is in a slump. Slashing an awful .175/.243/.206, he has also made six errors on the year.
Both are coming off successful 2015 seasons. Both hit over .300 and both raised their stock. Neither Wade nor Palacios were ranked in the top 30 among Twins prospects last year.
Other Notables: The Kernels have several other players to highlight. to name a few, Sam Clay (0.53 ERA in three starts), Luis Arraez (.395/.477/.605 in 38 at-bats), and Randy LeBlanc (1.50 ERA in four starts) are excelling in 2016.