TMLN: Moses Shines In Wings Rout

In this edition of Twins Minor League Notebook, three of the four affiliates pick up wins on Friday. Matthew Moses has a huge game for Rochester, going 5-5, the Rock Cats ride Nick Blackburn's right arm to a 3-1 victory, the Miracle commit three errors in a 4-2 loss, and the Snappers bats wake up to the tune of 14 hits against South Bend.

Rochester Red Wings: The Red Wings scored at least one run in the fourth, through eight inning, as they blew out a very tough Buffalo squad 13-2. Jeremy Cummings (3-1) picked up his third win of the season, as he was very economical on the mound. He went 6.1 innings, allowing only six hits, and was charged with two earned runs. Cummings has now won two of his last three starts, and has not allowed more than three earned runs in any appearance this season. Ricky Barrett continues to look sharp since returning from injury, as he fired 0.2 innings of shutout ball. He has not allowed an earned run since returning, which is a span of three appearances. Jason Miller and Brian Bass combined for two innings of shutout relief, and they did not allow a hit. Miller has been stellar all season long for the Wings, and Bass is starting to shake off a rough start to the season.

Well, we figured it would happen sooner or later. The hero at the plate on Friday for the Red Wings: Matt Moses. Moses went an incredible 5-5 in the game, smacking two doubles, scoring three times, and driving in three runs. Moses has now hit safely in his last three games, raising his batting average from .214 to .258. Garrett Jones also had a monster night at the plate, racking up four hits, including his fourth home run of the season. Jones also drove in three runs, tying Erik Lis for the organizational lead with 21 ribbies. Centerfielder Denard Span had three hits in the game, boosting his batting average to .256, and second baseman Matt Tolbert continued to swing a hot bat. Tolbert drove in four runs, had three hits, and hit his fifth double of the season. Third baseman Thomas Watkins hit his second home run of the season, and Doug Deeds picked up a knock in his two at-bats.

New Britain Rock Cats: The Rock Cats got out to a 3-0 lead, and never looked back, beating Trenton 3-1 on Friday. Nick Blackburn (3-1) got the start for the Cats, and he pitched magnificently, tossing 7.1 innings of three-hit ball. He allowed only an unearned run in the contest, and struck out six. Blackburn has been great in May for the Cats, posting a 1.69 ERA in four games, including three starts. He has gone at least seven innings in his last two starts. Tim Lahey picked up his first save since his first appearance back on April 9, working 1.2 innings of relief on Friday. Lahey has not allowed an earned run in his last two outings, as he has lowered his ERA from 6.00 to 4.82. He has struck out at least two batters in each of his last four appearances.

Only five hits in the game for the Cats, but they struck when needed and it was enough offense to nail down the W. Matt Allegra continued his torrid hitting, picking up to base hits, giving him multi-hit efforts in six of his last seven games. In that span, Allegra has bumped his batting average from .190 to .279. He has also scored in each of his last four starts, and has at least one double in three of his last four games. Felix Molina extended his hitting streak to 16 games, going 1-4 from the leadoff spot. Matt Geiger hit his first triple of the season, driving in one, and Gil Velazquez picked up his 13 ribbie of the year.

Fort Myers Miracle: The Miracle pounded out eight hits on Friday, but lost 4-2 to the Brevard County Manatees due to some shoddy defense. The team committed three errors behind starter Jay Rainville, who pitched well in the game. The young right-hander went 5.0 innings, allowing five hits, and one two of his three runs were earned. He struck out four, walked none, but did allow two home runs. Angel Garcia came in to relieve Rainville and was terrific, tossing two innings of no-hit relief. Garcia had been struggling lately, allowing runs in his last three starts, but he looked good in this one. David Shinskie was the final pitcher of the night for the Miracle, and he allowed an unearned run in his only inning of work. Shinskie has not allowed an earned run since April 28, a span of four appearances.

The Miracle got production from the bottom of their lineup, as their eight and nine hitters had four of the team's eight hits. Jeff Christy went 2-4 in the game, as he tries to get his batting average above .200, and Edward Ovalle registered at least one hit for the second game in a row. He is also batting below the Mendoza Line this season. Juan Portes drove in his fourth run in the last four games, and his 12th overall this season. Erik Lis had a base hit in the game, but is only 2 for his last 13.

Beloit Snappers: The Snappers pounded out 14 hits against South Bend on Friday, as they cruised to a 9-2 victory. Alex Burnett shook off a tough start in his last outing by going 7.2 innings on Friday. Burnett allowed two runs (one earned), gave up five hits, and struck out three. It was the second time in his last three outings that he has gone seven or more innings. Burnett has been great in May, posting a 2.89 earned run average in his three starts. Armando Gabino was the only other pitcher of the night for the Snappers, and he threw 1.1 scoreless frames. Gabino has a stellar 0.95 earned run average in 2007, and has allowed an earned run in only two of his ten appearances. He has yet to allow more than one earned run in any outing this season.

The bats came to life for the Snappers, as five of their starters had multi-hit games. Joe Benson may be breaking out of his slump, as the young centerfielder went 3-3 in the game, stroking his first home run of the season, while driving in three. Benson also scored three times, walked twice, as he registered his first multi-hit game since April 29. Danny Santiesteban hit his fourth home run of the season, as the young outfielder went 2-5 in the game. Santiesteban has homered twice in the last four games, and has driven in four. He also doubled in the game. Brian Dinkelman stroked two hits from the leadoff spot, and his .283 average is good for fifth in the organization. Danny Valencia had two hits and an RBI, and Greg Yersich picked up three knocks in the game. Yersich, Benson, and Santiesteban are all batting under .200 this season, so this game could be a sign that things are about to change.


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