Pipeline preview: Top Twins arms see double
Rainouts line up team's Nos. 4 and 9 prospects to pitch on same day
Rain on Monday washed out a doubleheader between Class A Peoria and Cedar Rapids, forcing the teams to play back-to-back doubleheaders Tuesday and Wednesday. Though the rainout meant they have to cram a lot of baseball into two days, it also created an entertaining pitching lineup Wednesday for Cedar Rapids.
The Kernels' scheduled starters for today's doubleheader are right-handers Kohl Stewart and Felix Jorge, the Twins' Nos. 4 and 9 prospects. Stewart, ranked No. 36 on MLB.com's Top 100 prospects list, is set to start the first game, which begins at 6:05 p.m. ET.
Stewart was the fourth overall pick of the 2013 First-Year Player Draft, and he is pitching well in his first full professional season. Stewart has made six starts this season and has a 2.35 ERA in 30 2/3 innings. He has struck out 23 batters and walked eight. Stewart's 0.88 WHIP is the best in the Midwest League.
Jorge impressed in the Appalachian League last year, but he has struggled in his introduction to full-season ball. In 26 1/3 innings this season, Jorge has an 8.89 ERA and a 1.71 WHIP.
Stewart and Jorge will face a Peoria lineup that is led by catcher Carson Kelly and shortstop Juan Herrera, the Cardinals' Nos. 8 and 15 prospects. Kelly is batting .252 with a .720 OPS in 27 games this season as he works to make the conversion from third base to catching. Herrera, whom the Cardinals acquired from the Indians last July in exchange for relief pitcher Marc Rzepczynski, is batting .283 with a .743 OPS in 29 games.
In addition to Stewart, several other pitchers ranked in the Top 100 are scheduled to start Wednesday, including Henry Owens (No. 28), Eddie Butler (No. 37), Allen Webster (No. 42), Jesse Biddle (No. 49) and Justin Nicolino (No. 74). Fans can watch all but Biddle on MiLB.TV, beginning at 1:05 p.m., when Butler and Double-A Tulsa host Springfield.
Top prospect probables
Alec Asher (Rangers' No. 11), Frisco at Midland
Biddle (Phillies' No. 2), Reading at New Hampshire
Christian Binford (Royals' No. 11), Wilmington vs. Salem
Aaron Blair (D-backs' No. 3), Visalia vs. High Desert
Butler (Rockies' No. 2), Tulsa vs. Springfield
Corey Black (Cubs' No. 16), Tennessee at Jackson
Ian Clarkin (Yankees' No. 8), Charleston vs. Hickory
Jorge (Twins' No. 9), Cedar Rapids vs. Peoria
Adalberto Mejia (Giants' No. 3), Richmond vs. Bowie
Keury Mella (Giants' No. 19), Augusta vs. West Virginia
Nicolino (Marlins' No. 4), Jacksonville vs. Mobile
Owens (Red Sox's No. 1), Portland at New Britain
Joely Rodriguez (Pirates' No. 20), Altoona at Binghamton
Carlos Salazar (Braves' No. 14), Rome at Greensboro
Sam Selman (Royals' No. 12), Northwest Arkansas at Arkansas
Stewart (Twins' No. 4), Cedar Rapids vs. Peoria
Jake Thompson (Tigers' No. 4), Lakeland at Bradenton
Webster (Red Sox's No. 2), Pawtucket at Indianapolis