Rooker rakes: Twins No. 7 prospect racking up extra-base hits

The Minnesota Twins are reshaping their franchise with an injection of youth and prospects.

Every Thursday for the rest of the season, FOX Sports North will take a closer look at some specific young players in Minnesota’s farm system — as well as noting others who might be stepping up — measuring, highlighting and evaluating their progress.

This is the 10th edition of the 2018 Young Twins Tracker.

 

Stephen Gonsalves, LHP (age 23/Triple-A)

Last week: 2 games (2 starts), 0-0, 11 IP, 6 H, 1 R, 6 BB, 13 K

Season (Triple-A): 12 games (12 starts), 5-3, 3.86 ERA, 58 1/3 IP, 40 H, 5 HR, 39 BB, 60 K, .196 OBA, 1.35 WHIP

Season (Double-A): 4 games (4 starts), 3-0, 1.77 ERA, 20 1/3 IP, 11 H, 2 HR, 10 BB, 25 K, .167 OBA, 1.03 WHIP

Notable: Gonsalves lowered his ERA below the 4.00 mark for the first time since May 24, allowing just one run in 11 innings of work this past week. His walks are cause for concern, however, as Gonsalves has tallied five BBs in three of his last five outings. The 23-year-old recorded more walks (22) than strikeouts (21) in the month of June, although his start on Independence Day has him back on track in July (6 K, 1 BB).

 

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Nick Gordon, SS (age 22/Triple-A)

Last week: 7 games, 29 AB, 3 H, 0 2B, 0 3B, 1 HR, 1 R, 5 RBI, 0 SB, 1 BB, 5 K, .103 BA

Season (Triple-A): 42 games, 162 AB, .233 BA, .254 OBP, .331 SLG, .586 OPS, 7 2B, 3 3B, 1 HR, 10 R, 11 RBI, 1 SB, 5 BB, 31 K

Season (Double-A): 42 games, 162 AB, .333 BA, .381 OBP, .525 SLG, .906 OPS, 10 2B, 3 3B, 5 HR, 22 R, 20 RBI, 7 SB, 11 BB, 27 K

Notable: Gordon’s batting average dropped roughly 30 points from last week after a rough 3-for-29 stretch, although one of those hits was his first career homer at Triple-A. The 22-year-old’s production took a dip in June, registering a .229/.248/.343 slash line after hitting .302/.333/.395 in 12 games the previous month.

 

Brusdar Graterol, RHP (age 19/High-A)

Last week: 1 game (1 start), 1-0, 5 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 3 BB, 9 K

Season (High-A) 1 game, 0-1, 15.00 ERA, 3 IP, 9 H, 0 HR, 1 BB, 3 K, .600 OBA, 3.33 WHIP

Season (Low-A): 8 games, 3-2, 2.18 ERA, 41 1/3 IP, 30 H, 2 HR, 9 BB, 51 K, .195 OBA, 0.94 WHIP

Notable: After lighting up Single-A (Low) with Cedar Rapids, Graterol was humbled a bit in his first appearance with Fort Myers. He allowed five runs on nine hits in three innings of work during an 11-3 loss to Lakeland. The Twins’ No. 6 prospect can only improve from here.

 

Tyler Jay, LHP (age 24/Double-A)

Last week: 2 games (0 starts), 0-0, 3 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 HR, 0 BB, 3 K

Season: 20 games, 1-1, 3.31 ERA, 32 2/3 IP, 36 H, 3 HR, 12 BB, 29 K, .277 OBA, 1.47 WHIP

Notable: Jay was practically flawless in two appearances last week, allowing just one hit in three innings while fanning three and walking none. It was a solid way to end an otherwise deflating month that saw Jay allow eight earned runs in 10 IP (nine appearances).

 

Alex Kirilloff, OF (age 20/High-A)

Last week: 6 games, 23 AB, 11 H, 1 2B, 1 3B, 0 HR, 3 R, 6 RBI, 1 SB, 1 BB, 3 K, .478 BA

Season (High-A): 12 games, 52 AB, .365 BA, .382 OBP, .500 SLG, .882 OPS, 2 2B, 1 3B, 1 HR, 6 R, 12 RBI, 1 SB, 1 BB, 8 K

Season (Low-A): 65 games, 252 AB, .333 BA, .391 OBP, .607 SLG, .999 OPS, 20 2B, 5 3B, 13 HR, 36 R, 56 RBI, 1 SB, 24 BB, 47 K

Notable: Another week, another Kirilloff hitting streak. The 20-year-old collected at least one hit in all six games last week, including multiple hits in four contests. With runners in scoring position at Fort Myers, Kirilloff is hitting 9-for-17, good for a .529 average and 12 RBI.

 

Royce Lewis, SS (age 19/Low-A)

Last week: 7 games, 29 AB, 15 H, 6 2B, 7 HR, 7 R, 6 RBI, 1 SB, 3 BB, 3 K, .517BA

Season: 60 games, 239 AB, .301 BA, .349 OBP, .456 SLG, .805 OPS, 16 2B, 0 3B, 7 HR, 41 R, 43 RBI, 18 SB, 17 BB, 41 K

Notable: In 23 games in June, Lewis hit .330/.380/.604 with 15 extra-base hits and 22 RBI. A call up to High-A has to be coming soon, right?

 

Young Twins Tracker Archive

Brent Rooker, 1B (age 23/Double-A)

Last week: 7 games, 24 AB, 10 H, 5 2B, 3 HR, 7 R, 6 RBI, 2 SB, 2 BB, 8 K, .417 BA

Season: 77 games, 302 AB, .274 BA, .341 OBP, .530 SLG, .871 OPS, 21 2B, 4 3B, 14 HR, 44 R, 49 RBI, 3 SB, 23 BB, 94 K

Notable: Of Rooker’s 10 hits last week, only two were singles. The Twins’ No. 7 prospect leads Chattanooga in doubles, triples, homers and RBI – numbers Minnesota had in mind when it selected him 35th overall in 2017. After hitting .231/.287/.452 in May, Rooker found his stroke in June and finished the month with a .312/.393/.645 slash line with seven doubles, three triples and six homers.

 

LaMonte Wade, OF (age 24/Double-A)

Last week: 7 games, 26 AB, 10 H, 2 2B, 1 HR, 6 R, 3 RBI, 1 SB, 1 BB, 3 K, .385 BA

Season (Triple-A): 24 games, 76 AB, .263 BA, .404 OBP, .447 SLG, .852 OPS, 4 2B, 2 3B, 2 HR, 12 R, 9 RBI, 2 SB, 17 BB, 13 K

Season (Double-A): 46 games, 171 AB, .298 BA, .393 OBP, .444 SLG, .837 OPS, 2 2B, 1 3B, 7 HR, 30 R, 27 RBI, 5 SB, 26 BB, 20 K

Notable: Wade showed incredible patience in June, collecting 17 walks for Triple-A Rochester compared to just 11 strikeouts. His .404 on-base percentage leads Rochester among players with 70+ at-bats.

 

Others: OF Byron Buxton was optioned to Triple-A earlier this week, where the Twins hope he’ll find his hitting stroke again. In six games this week, Buck went 5-for-29 (.172 BA) with three doubles and a homer. … 3B Miguel Sano started four games for Fort Myers last week and tallied multiple hits in three of them. … Rochester LHP Lewis Thorpe, ranked by MLB.com as the Twins’ No. 11 prospect, went 3-1 with a 3.81 ERA in five June starts and was named the Southern League Pitcher of the Week (June 21-July 1) after fanning 19 hitters in two starts. … Cedar Rapids reliever Jovani Moran tallied six Ks in 4 1/3 innings last week and leads the Kernels with 65 on the season.

Statistics courtesy milb.com and STATS