Minnesota Twins Daily Morning Dip: Twins first PED suspension

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MINNEAPOLIS - OCTOBER 9: Relief pitcher Juan Rincon
MINNEAPOLIS - OCTOBER 9: Relief pitcher Juan Rincon /
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Minnesota Twins Daily Dip, January 23rd, 2018

Welcome to the January 23rd edition of the Daily Dip, your daily piece of news and notes here on Puckett’s Pond, offseason edition. You’ll find the most recent news of the Minnesota Twins organization, stories from around the game, and links to any information you may want to know about the Minnesota Twins or baseball as we work our way through the hot stove season!

Minnesota Twins Organizational Scores

Australian Baseball League Update
The ABL is off until Thursday.

Player Stats:
Todd Van Steensel, Sydney – 5.2 IP, 14.29 ERA, 3.18 WHIP, 4/7 BB/K
Aaron Whitefield, Brisbane – .304/.377/.457, 92 AB, 2 HR, 9 SB, 12/25 BB/K

Dominican Winter League Update
The DWL was off on Monday.

Player Stats:
Tyler Kinley – Tigres del Licey – 19 IP, 0.47 ERA, 0.84 WHIP, 11/32 BB/K
Adalberto Mejia – Gigantes del Cibao – 21 IP, 3.43 ERA, 1.33 WHIP, 8/15 BB/K
Kennys Vargas, Aguilas Cibaenas – .222/.311/.407, 54 AB, 2 HR, 7/20 BB/K
T.J. White – Gigantes del Cibao – .000/.000/.000, 14 AB, 0/5

Mexican Winter League Update
The Mexican League was off on Monday.

Player Stats:
Jermaine Curtis, Naranjeros de Hermosillo – .161/.278/.226, 31 AB, 1 HR, 3/8 BB/K
Brock Stassi, Charros de Jaisco – .234/.387/.364, 107 AB, 2 HR, 28/25 BB/K

Puerto Rican Winter League Update
The PRWL had Monday off.

Player Stats:
Nelson Molina, Indios de Mayaguez – .000/.000/.000, 2 AB
Kennys Vargas, Indios de Mayaguez – .256/.475/.558, 43 AB, 4 HR, 18/13 BB/K

Venezuelan Winter League Update
The VWL was off on Monday.

Player Stats:
Melvi Acosta, Bravos de Margarita – 3 IP, 3.00 ERA, 2.33 WHIP, 1/1 BB/K
Willians Astudillo, Caribes de Anzoategui – .319/.365/.461, 204 AB, 6 HR, 11/4 BB/K
Omar Bencomo, Bravos de Margarita – 75 1/3 IP, 4.42 ERA, 1.51 WHIP, 19/50 BB/K
Edwar Colina – Navegantes del Magallanes – 5 IP, 3.60 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, 3/2 BB/K
Jermaine Curtis, Aguilas de Zulia – .400/.400/.600, 5 AB, 0/1 BB/K
Anderson Munoz, Aguilas de Zulia – 15 2/3 IP, 3.45 ERA, 1.34 WHIP, 13/9 BB/K
Gregorio Petit, Leones del Caracas – .299/.358/.449, 3 HR, 3 SB, 11/17 BB/K
Leonardo Reginatto, Bravos de Margarita – .285/.326/.331, 172 AB, 1 HR, 3 SB, 10/32 BB/K

Minnesota Twins news and notes

Astros claim Boshers
The Twins designated Buddy Boshers for assignment when they signed Addison Reed recently, and the Houston Astros on Monday claimed Boshers off of waivers.

Kirby uniform mystery now solved
When Kirby Puckett was coming up through the minor leagues, the Toledo Mud Hens were a Minnesota Twins affiliate. Toledo intended to do a Puckett bobblehead in 2018, but they could not find evidence of his jersey number. The mystery was solved, thanks to hoarding!

More from Puckett's Pond

Notes from around baseball

Next: Would Dozier extension be wise?

One Last Thing

Today is the 39th birthday of former Minnesota Twins reliever Juan Rincon. Rincon was originally signed out of Venezuela in November of 1996. He was aggressively placed by the Twins in the GCL as an 18 year-old in his first pro season, but he responded well, earning a late season promotion to Elizabethton.

He found sledding more difficult as a starter trying to work up to the majors from that point, eventually converting full time to a reliever in 2003. He then had a four-year run that was among the best middle relievers in baseball, averaging 71 games and 80 innings each season, with a 2.93 ERA, 1.22 WHIP, a 9.3% walk rate, and a 23.9% strikeout rate.

He collapsed after the 2006 season and could never find the spin on his breaking ball the same way again, making him much more hittable, and leading to him being out of the league after 2 appearances in 2010.

Rincon is notable as the first Twins player suspended under MLB’s PED policy, missing 10 games in early 2005 due to PEDs, but returning to throw 75 games that season and another 75 the next season before he lost his feel.

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