Monday, June 29, 2009

Brewster Stealing Some Cheese

One Brewster first walked on campus he made a promise to close down the borders and stop the flow of Minnesota talent to other schools, mainly Wisconsin. While he has not completely stopped the gap (Floyd, Mobley, he has done a pretty good job. In Glen Mason's last full recruiting class of the top 10 Minnesota recruits 3 choose Minnesota (Weber, Eric Ellestad, and Sean McWhither) and 3 choose Wisconsin (Kim Royston, Brandon Hoey, and Issac Anderson). Interestingly both Royston and Carufel have both come home. In Brewster's last class of the top 10 Minnesota recruits 6 choose Minnesota with Bryce McNeal (Clemson) and Casey Dehn (Wisconsin) escaping.

It wasn't enough for Brewster to stop the flow of Minnesotans to Wisconsin he wanted to reverse the flow and bring the Wisconsinites to Minnesota. In the past week Brewster has received commitments for two Wisconsinites in Matt Eggen and Zac Epping. They join Tom Parish giving the Gophers currently 3 commitments from Wisconsin. They would have had 4 if not for this fool. So far 3 of the top 7 Wisconsin recruits are headed to Minneapolis. Of the top 10 in Wisconsin Konrad Zagzebski is the only one to commit to Wisconsin with even Iowa and Indiana getting commitments.

While the jury is still out on Brewster with this year being a turning point, nothing makes me happier than him getting kids from Wisconsin. While the results are not there yet he is bringing in a lot more talent and has done better recruiting than Mason ever did or even thought about doing. The result is our future looks brighter and Bret Bielema has the Badgers headed in the other direction much to the chagrin of Badger fans and the delight of me.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Twins Prospect Power Rankings

1. Danny Valencia AAA - Rochester
Age: 24
Stats: .301 8 HR 33 RBI
Has shown that he was deserving of promotion to AAA on June 22 by hitting .500 (9-18) 1 HR 3 RBI in his first week. He is looking like a September callup.

2. OF Ben Revere High A - Fort Myers
Age: 21
Stats: .318 2 HR 30 RBI 28 SB
Is a model of consistency. There are some rumblings about moving him to second base because of his weak arm and a logjam in the outfield.

3. OF Aaron Hicks Low A - Beloit
Age: 19
Stats: .235 0 HR 3 RBI 1 SB
I have no idea why the Twins waited until the short-season started to move him to Beloit. Either he has a great eye or pitchers are pitching around him to get to the otherwise weak Beloit lineup because he has 5 walks in only 22 plate appearances.

4. C Wilson Ramos AA - New Britain
Age: 21
Stats: .308 3 HR 18 RBI
Was on an absolute tear in June hitting .400-2-6 but then strained his hamstring and is out for a month. He has only played in 36 games so far this year.

5. OF Chris Parmelee High A - Fort Myers
Age: 21
Stats: .264 9 HR 41 RBI
This may be a little high for him, but there is a large gap between the top 4 and the rest. He is the best power hitting prospect in the system as evidenced by him winning the Florida State League Home Run Derby. The best thing he has done is cut down on the strikeouts this year. In roughly the same amount of at-bats this year he has 57 strikeouts compared to last years 83.

6. RHP Carlos Gutierrez AA - New Britain
Age: 22
Stats: 73.2 IP 2.32 ERA 41 K
He has struggled in the promotion to AA by going 19 IP 5.21 ERA 8 K in four starts. AA batters are hitting .284 with 4 home runs against him while in High A they hit .192 and only 1 home run in 54.2 innings.

7. RHP Anthony Slama AA - New Britain
Age: 25
Stats: 39.2 IP 2.50 ERA 55 K
With the rash of promotions around the minor league all-star games I have no idea why he is still in New Britain. He needs to be in Rochester if the Twins want him to help the bullpen next year.

8. OF Rene Tosoni AA - New Britain
Age: 22
Stats: .271 9 HR 45 RBI
Is the Twins representative in the Futures Game in St. Louis for the World team (He is from Canada). He is showing his potential after finally being healthy. One problem: he is hitting .143 against left-handed pitching.

9. RHP David Bromberg High A - Fort Myers
Age: 21
Stats: 74.1 IP 2.66 ERA 69 K
Last start was a little rough but he is still a very good pitcher and has very good stuff.

10. RHP Billy Bullock Rookie - Elizabethton
Age: 21
Stats: 1 IP 0.00 ERA 2 K
Highest signed 2009 draft pick after being the Twins 2nd Round selection. Has a 96-98 mph fastball and needs to work on his second pitch, but as a college reliever he should move quickly up the system and could end this year in Beloit and will likely start 2010 in Fort Myers.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Twins Prospect Power Rankings - Week 9

1. 3B Danny Valencia AA - New Britain
Age: 24
Stats: .284 6 HR 26 RBI
He is mired in a horrific slump hitting .074 in the month of June. He is still a top-notch prospect and the slump may be due to the fact he should be in AAA right now.

2. OF Ben Revere High A - Fort Myers
Age: 21
Stats: .327 1 HR 23 RBI 24 SB
Yes he has some issues with a slugging percentage of only .381, but he deserves a promotion to AA after the All-Star game that he will be participating in. He appears to a be a Denard Span carbon-copy.

3. C Wilson Ramos AA - New Britain
Age: 21
Stats: .292 1 HR 14 RBI
Has come back from his injury swinging. Since coming back he has hit .370 with 4 doubles and 5 RBI in 7 games. He will be in AA the entire year especially with Jose Morales in Rochester.

4. OF Aaron Hicks Rookie - Elizabethton
Age: 19
Stats: N/A

5. RHP Carlos Gutierrez AA - New Britain
Age: 22
Stats: 59.2 IP 1.96 ERA 36 K
Not a very good first start after getting a much deserved promotion from Fort Myers. He went 5 innings giving up 5 runs on 7 hits. This will be as far as he moves this year as there is talk of limiting his innings this year to 100 because he has never pitched that many innings before.

6. RHP Anthony Slama AA - New Britain
Age: 25
Stats: 31 IP 2.90 ERA 47 K
Still strikes out an amazing amount of players but gives up a little too many hits and walks with a WHIP of 1.52. It would still be a crime if he is not in Rochester by the end of June.

7. 1B-OF Chris Parmelee High A - Fort Myers
Age: 21
Stats: .249 5 HR 28 RBI
Has not hit a home run in a long time but has a decent OBP of .327. He will spend the whole year in Fort Myers. The question is whether he will perform well enough to make it to New Britain next year.

8. 2B Brian Dinkelman AA - New Britain
Age: 25
Stats: .330 3 HR 32 RBI
Not alot of power but he has 14 doubles and is doing well driving in runs in the 3 hole for New Britain. They need to clear the logjam in Rochester to make room for him so he can be challenged.

9. OF Rene Tosoni AA - New Britain
Age: 22
Stats: .272 8 HR 32 RBI
Continues to produce hitting .379 in the last 10 games. He will likely spend the season in New Britain.

10. RHP David Bromberg High A - Fort Myers
Age: 21
Stats: 56.2 IP 2.06 ERA 50 K
While a lot has been made of Carlos Gutierrez in Fort Myers, Bromberg has quietly been producing and stiking out more batters. With a lack of quality starters in New Britain outside of Gutierrez he should get a call up at some point this year but probably not until at least July.

With the MLB Draft tommorrow, I will post a very uninformed reaction to the draft, but it will list who was drafted. Who knows by the end of the year, one of those players may be on this list.

A site I like is TFLN (Texts From Last Night). Here is your TFLN of the Day:
(315): I told him to come back in 5mins cause i needed to take a few more shots before i could talk to him

Update on the Worst Fantasy Team Ever

I ranted earlier about the disaster that was my fantasy team and it has only gotten worse. Players that were performing have stopped or gotten injured and it is a complete disaster. However, I did finally get my first win this week to go to an awesome 1-8. Here is the list of players destroying my life:

C Geovanny Soto: He was on the original list and has not done anything since. .204-2-13 is absolutely terrible for someone coming off a .285-23-86 rookie season. I have been trying to find a replacement all year but catcher is not a very deep position. I have been hoping Matt Wieters can take his place but he is also not off to a good start. It is not a large enough sample for me to rant on him but it is a very slow start for Baseball America's #1 prospect.

SS Jose Reyes: He was also on the original list but the reason has completely changed. Before it was due to a lack of production and now it is a lack of playing. After my post it seemed he had turned the corner and started to produce. He then tore his hamstring and has not played since May 20th. He is still a couple of weeks away from coming back and I doubt he will be the same when he comes back. Of course, Reyes would have a lost year the year I use my 1st round pick on him.

OF Jay Bruce: He is not that frustrating because the expectations were that great. Yes, he has hit 14 home runs this year but he is doing it batting .216. The most frustrating part it is all in spurts. He has had two big weeks that he has produced and has done nothing the rest of the time.

OF B.J. Upton: He has started to produce a little lately but it has still been a terrible season for someone who should be a .300-20-80-30 player. Instead he is currently .220-3-15-17.

OF Josh Hamilton: I have never hated a recovered crackhead more. First he wasn't producing and then he had nagging injuries and now he has torn abdominal muscle and is out for over a month. I will never touch him again because the drugs have destroyed his body so much that he can never stay healthy. In the last 3 years he has played 281 games out of a possible 380 games. That makes Joe Mauer look like Lou Gehrig.

1B Joey Votto: Votto was one of the bright spots in the first couple weeks. He then suddenly came down with bout of dizziness. He played every so often and produced when he did but missed a lot of games. It was first related to an ear infection and he sat for awhile. He then came back but the problem persisted. He then went on the 15 day DL for personal reasons. It is believed to be related to the dizziness (some have speculated that it is vertigo) but it has not been said why he is on the DL. There is no idea of when he will be back or if he will ever be back. I understand you have to respect his privacy but he is killing my fantasy team because I have no idea when he will be back.

P Brandon Webb: Has not pitched since Opening Day and does not appear close to doing so. The most annoying thing is that the site I use since he is supposed to be a Cy Young contender is not able to be dropped so I have had to hold him the entire time.

Players that have also hurt me this year: 3B Garrett Atkins, P Rich Harden, P John Lackey, and P Brian Wilson

Players that have surprisingly done well this year: 1B James Loney, 2B Brandon Phillips, P Cole Hamels, P Erik Bedard, and P Edwin Jackson

Monday, June 1, 2009

Twins Prospect Power Rankings - Week 8

1. 3B Danny Valencia AA - New Britain
Previous Rank: 1
Age: 24
Stats: .324 6 HR 24 RBI
Only 6 home runs may not be impressive but he has an impressive slugging percentage of .570 thanks to 9 doubles and 4 triples.

2. OF Ben Revere High A - Fort Myers
Previous Rank: 2
Age: 21
Stats: .346 1 HR 23 RBI 21 SB
The dude just makes contact. When you have more stolen bases than strikeouts (15) in 179 AB you are doing something right.

3. C Wilson Ramos AA - New Britain
Previous Rank: 3
Age: 21
Stats: On Sunday he appeared as a defensive replacement for the first time since May 8th when he broke his finger.

4. OF Aaron Hicks Rookie - Elizabethton
Previous Rank: 4
Age: 19
Stats: N/A
The wait for Aaron Hicks is near the end as Elizabethton starts their season on June 23.

5. RHP Anthony Slama AA - New Britain
Previous Rank: 5
Age: 25
Stats: 27 IP 3.00 ERA 41 K 10 SV
Had a couple bad appearances but still ready to be moved to AAA and I don't see why he hasn't been moved yet.

6. RHP Carlos Gutierrez High A - Fort Myers
Previous Rank: 6
Age: 22
Stats: 49.2 IP 1.09 ERA 32 K
I guess that is one way to keep your ERA low in his last start 7 runs were scored in 3.2 innings but he was only charged with 1 earned run because of 7 errors in the game. The problem is that 2 of them were his.

7. OF Chris Parmelee High A - Fort Myers
Previous Rank: 7
Age: 21
Stats: .260 5 HR 27 RBI
Has gone a while without a home run but he is in a very pitcher friendly league as he is tied for 12th in home runs. Good news is that he is hitting .297 in the last 10 games and hit .318 in May.

8. 2B Brian Dinkelman AA - New Britain
Previous Rank: 8
Age: 25
Stats: .337 3 HR 30 RBI
Despite his numbers the Twins promoted Steve Tolleson who was hitting .258-2-13 in AA to replace Alexi Casilla in Rochester. Yeah that makes sense.

9. DH Luke Hughes AAA - Rochester
Previous Rank: 9
Age: 24
Stats: .261 6 HR 28 RBI
Has not played since May 22 and I have not been able to find out why. It must not be a big injury as he is not on the disabled list.

10. OF Rene Tosoni AA - New Britain
Previous Rank: NR
Age: 22
Stats: .266 8 HR 30 RBI
Struggled with injuries last year but showed enough to get moved to New Britain and has started to show why. In his last 4 games he has gone 6-13 with 2 HR and 8 RBI. Of those 6 hits only 1 is a single.

Demoted of List: OF Evan Bigley

Fourth Strike Studs and Duds of the Month

I have done away with the Power Rankings at least for now as it took more time than I wanted to spend debating who is better between the Rockies and the Astros. I still would like to name my studs and duds of the month of May.

Stud Hitter of the Month: C Joe Mauer, MIN
Stats: .414 11 HR 32 RBI .500 OBP
Honorable Mention: Mark Teixiera NYY, Justin Morneau MIN, Carl Crawford TB

Stud Pitcher of the Month: Zack Grienke, KC
Stats: 3-1 46 IP 1.57 ERA 44 K 3 CG
Honorable Mention: Justin Verlander DET, CC Sabathia NYY, Roy Halladay TOR

Dud Hitter of the Month: OF Jordan Schafer, ATL
Stats: .158 0 HR 5 RBI 40 SO in 101 AB
Dishonorable Mention: Garrett Atkins COL, Chris B. Young ARI, Mike Fontenot CHC

Dud Pitcher of the Month: Daniel Cabrera, WAS
Stats: 3 Starts 15.2 IP 8.04 ERA 7 K 18 BB 22 HA
Dishonorable Mention: Scott Kazmir TB, Ervin Santana LAA, Armando Galarraga DET