Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Thoughts from a minor league telecast

Miguel Sano during spring training.
Fox Sports North didn't have the same luck with their RockCats broadcast Monday as they did with their Kernels broadcast earlier in the season.

The game they did from Cedar Rapids, Byron Buxton starred. The phenom had two outstanding catches in center field and turned what would have been a single to right-center for most hitters into a triple.

Buxton was the attraction, the reason FSN did the game. Those of us who watched saw Buxton's abilities and his promise.

Had the same thing happened Monday, Miguel Sano — the focal point of the broadcast — would have launched a couple of rockets and we'd all be marveling today at his raw power. And there would be an increase in the volume of the demands that Sano be called up next month.

Didn't happen. Sano did make a nice defensive play on a slow roller. But he took an 0-for-4 at the plate and struck out twice. Off this one game, you'd never know he's as highly regarded a prospect as he is.

So it goes.

Danny Santana did impress. He drew a walk in his first plate appearance — a bit of a rarity for him — was hit by a pitch in his second time up, and followed with a single, a triple and a strikeout. It adds up to 2-for-3 with two runs scored and four times on base, which is the primary job of a leadoff hitter. He also looked good in the field.

Eddie Rosario had a two-run double and a sac fly that drove the left fielder to the wall. He also made a poor defensive decision at second base as the game got away from the RockCats late.

None of this establishes anything specific about any of them. It doesn't mean Sano's a bum or that Santana's great. It's just one game in Double A.


Kyle Gibson got 11 outs Monday and gave up 10 hits.
Kyle Gibson got shelled in the major league game Monday afternoon and was immediately optioned out to Rochester. No corresponding move was immediately made, and Ron Gardenhire implied that the brass was going to take its time deciding how to fill the roster spot.

Gibson had a rough time of it in his first 10 major league starts. This doesn't really surprise me: He had already worked about 100 innings, about twice his 2012 workload, when the Twins finally brought him up from Rochester. He'd hit the wall in his post-surgical rehab and was trying to climb that wall without success.

We're seeing much the same thing with Mike Pelfrey. He had a brief run in June and July in which he seemed much better, and now he's receding.

Pelfrey's a free agent to be, and who knows if he'll be back next season. Gibson still has a place in the organization's plans. I don't now if they'll shut Gibson down now, or if they'll let him try to add innings for another couple of weeks. I certainly don't expect him to be returned to the roster in September.

1 comment:

  1. The truth is if ONE of these minor league phenoms becomes a serviceable MLB player that would be a surprise. There is too much hype concerning these low level players.