Twins prospect Kirilloff a doubles machine

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 18th edition of the 2018 Young Twins Tracker.

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Byron Buxton, OF (age 24/Triple-A)

Last week: 5 games, 20 AB, 9 H, 4 2B, 1 3B, 3 R, 3 RBI, 0 SB, 0 BB, 3 K, .450 BA

Season (Triple-A): 23 games, 128 AB, .273 BA, .331 OBP, .469 SLG, .800 OPS, 11 2B, 1 3B, 4 HR, 20 R, 14 RBI, 4 SB, 9 BB, 39 K

Notable: Buxton’s still not walking much — just nine times vs. 39 strikeouts — but that doesn’t really matter when you’re hitting like he is at the moment. Buxton had another huge week, and appears to be at full health once again. Paul Molitor hasn’t given anything away when asked if Buxton will return to the Twins when the roster expands on Sept. 1, but he’s certainly doing his part.

 

 

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

Last week: 7 games, 24 AB, 6 H, 3 R, 2 RBI, 1 SB, 4 BB, 7 K, .250 BA

Season (Triple-A): 94 games, 363 AB, .212 BA, .260 OBP, .281 SLG, .541 OPS, 13 2B, 3 3B, 2 HR, 36 R, 28 RBI, 12 SB, 21 BB, 77 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 first few weeks in Triple-A were encouraging, but he’s struggled in the months since. He strung together a three-hit outing Tuesday in the second game of a doubleheader, extending his hit streak to three games, but consistent success at the plate remains an issue.

 

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

Last week: 1 game (1 start), 1-0, 5 2/3 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 6 K

Season (High-A): 10 games, 5-2, 3.38 ERA, 56 IP, 56 H, 0 HR, 17 BB, 52 K, .265 OBA, 1.304 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: Graterol didn’t allow a run in 5 2/3 innings against Bradenton earlier this week, the first time the young flamethrower has done that since his promotion to Fort Myers.

 

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

Last week: 7 games, 30 AB, 10 H, 1 2B, 1 HR, 4 R, 3 RBI, 0 SB, 0 BB, 5 K, .333 BA

Season (High-A): 61 games, 247 AB, .364 BA, .388 OBP, .538 SLG, .926 OPS, 24 2B, 2 3B, 5 HR, 37 R, 42 RBI, 2 SB, 10 BB, 38 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: Kirilloff just keeps piling up hits, doubles specifically. He’s up to 10th in the Florida State League with 24. No one else in the top 10 has played fewer than 95 games. With a combined 44 doubles at two levels this season, Kirilloff leads all minor leaguers in two-base hits and is just one of three to have 40+. Former Twin Eduardo Escobar leads the majors with 44 doubles.

 

Trevor Larnach, OF (age 21/Low-A)

Last week (Low-A): 5 games, 19 AB, 3 H, 1 R, 2 RBI, 1 SB, 2 BB, 5 K, .158 BA

Season (Low-A): 20 games, 79 AB, .278 BA, .329 OBP, .456 SLG, .785 OPS, 6 2B, 1 3B, 2 HR, 12 R, 8 RBI, 1 SB, 6 BB, 14 K

Season (Rookie): 17 games, 60 AB, .300 BA, .405 OBP, .467 SLG, .872 OPS, 4 2B, 2 HR, 10 R, 15 RBI, 2 SB, 10 BB, 11 K

Notable: When Larnach’s seven-game hit streak ended, it really ended. He went 0-for-4 in three different games last week, but had a pair of singles Saturday. He also notched his first stolen base since arriving in Cedar Rapids, so that’s something.

 

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

Last week: 6 games, 25 AB, 1 H, 1 R, 0 RBI, 0 SB, 1 BB, 5 K, .040 BA

Season (High-A): 42 games, 171 AB, .257 BA, .335 OBP, .415 SLG, .750 OPS, 6 2B, 3 3B, 5 HR, 33 R, 21 RBI, 6 SB, 19 BB, 30 K

Season (Low-A): 75 games, 295 AB, .315 BA, .368 OBP, .485 SLG, .853 OPS, 23 2B, 0 3B, 9 HR, 50 R, 53 RBI, 22 SB, 24 BB, 49 K

Notable: This probably wasn’t the worst week of Lewis’ baseball career, but it might be close. He went 1-for-25 at the plate, a stretch that dropped his average from .295 all the way down to .257.

 

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

Last week: 6 games, 25 AB, 3 H, 1 2B, 3 R, 1 RBI, 0 SB, 3 BB, 4 K, .143 BA

Season: 125 games, 484 AB, .258 BA, .335 OBP, .477 SLG, .812 OPS, 32 2B, 4 3B, 22 HR, 72 R, 78 RBI, 5 SB, 53 BB, 145 K

Notable: Rooker broke a five-game extra-base-hits drought Monday with a double. He still leads the Southern League in doubles and ranks second in home runs.

 

Other notes:  Red Wings LHP Lewis Thorpe allowed one run on five hits in 5 2/3 innings in one start. …   Chattanooga OF Tanner English (11th round, 2014) hit .462 with two triples and a double in four games last week. … Lookouts RHP Tyler Wells (15th round, 2016) pitched six shutout innings in one start last week, allowing just three hits and striking out seven. … Fort Myers OF Aaron Whitefield hit .350 with a double in five games. … Fort Myers RHP Hector Lujan (35th round, 2015) didn’t allow a run in three relief appearances, giving up just one hit in 4 1/3 innings while striking out eight. … Fort Myers RHP Colton Davis (25th round, 2016) didn’t allow a hit in two relief appearances, fanning four in 3 2/3 innings. … Cedar Rapids SS Michael Davis (24th round, 2018) hit .455 with two home runs and a double in six games. … Cedar Rapids C Ryan Jeffers (2nd round, 2018) hit .389 in five games. … Cedar Rapids RHP Jhoan Duran pitched 6 2/3 shutout innings in his only start last week, allowing just one hit and racking up 10 strikeouts.

Statistics courtesy milb.com and baseball-reference.com