Minneapolis Tigers

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Team: Minneapolis Tigers [ID #420] Bookmark Minneapolis Tigers

Location: Minneapolis, MN (Midwest)

League: II.2 - East

Owner: xLee227 send message
          [since July 06th 2015 | last seen February 17th 2018]

Manager: Rueben Sanchez

Ballpark: HSBC Centre

Rank: #9 - Rating: 293.27

Fan Mood: 119.21

Prestige: 44

Color: Navy & Gold

Team Notes:

• Jan 15 2035: Ignacio Paredes was selected to the national team of Venezuela.
• Nov 04 2034: Roger Tremblay was named the Rookie Pitcher of the Year.
• Jul 21 2034: Mateo Esquivel was released.
• Jul 16 2034: Alonzo Gamboa was claimed off of waivers.
• Jul 09 2034: Benito Acosta was released.
• Jul 07 2034: Mateo Esquivel was claimed off of waivers.
• Jul 02 2034: David Morley was claimed off of waivers.
• Jun 04 2034: Ricky Ash was claimed off of waivers.
• May 29 2034: Dick Nakashima was signed as a free agent.
• May 29 2034: Daniel Consuegra was released.

League Record:

Wins: 0 Losses: 0 Pct: .000 Last10: 4-6 Streak: W3

Ave: 0.0 - 0.0 RS: 0 RA: 0 DIFF: 0


Group 0 [0 | Still Alive]

Press Releases:

Nov 04 2034: 2034 Season Review - by xLee227 on December 21st, 2017

The Minneapolis Tigers had a brief but memorable stay in the Legends League, finishing fifth in the East despite an 84-76 record. Buoyed by stellar play in the second half of the season, the team was in contention for the division title until the last week of the season, at one point in second place before skidding to the finish line and dropping the final game of the season against Birmingham 4-3 to relegate by the slimmest of margins.

The season started inauspiciously with the Tigers getting swept by Alexandria in the opening series and then labouring to interdivisional play mired in last place, burdened by a stumbling rotation that featured 8 different pitchers and a lineup that was struggling to adapt to the higher level of pitching seen in LL 1. However, interdivisional competition sparked the team's flagging play and they showed signs of competitiveness heading into the All-Star Break, albeit with an alarming degree of streakiness. Three players from Minneapolis were selected to the All-Star Game - 32-year-old slugger Leonardo Pineda in his eighth consecutive All-Star Game, outfielder Fabián Cuéllar, 33, and 25-year-old first baseman Jackson Guest, who's unexpectedly scorching first half of the season was enough to get him to the mid-summer classic.

Afterwards, the Tigers turned their season around, going on a roll through the end of the interleague portion of the schedule and carrying that momentum into the home stretch of the season, peaking in second place at just a game behind the division lead. From that point on, however, the team struggled to maintain any semblance consistency, returning to their earlier capricious nature and falling to fifth place on the last day of the season as a byproduct of an extremely tight Eastern division - the middle three teams in the East finished one game apart and the Tigers would have placed 2nd in the West with their 84-76 record.

Although not the result the team was looking for, Tigers President Xavier Lee wasn't alone when he remarked that he was "real proud of how we battled in the second half of the season...I think this franchise has come a long way from Division 6 exactly a decade ago in 2024 [the team played in League VI.2 that year] and this season was the culmination of our work to get this far - our goal for the next decade is to maintain that level of success and competitiveness to try and build a sustainable winner in Minneapolis."

In order to reach that level of consistency, the team will have to successfully transition from a core now in its 30s - centred around Pineda and Cuéllar in the lineup while also featuring third baseman Francisco Maya, 31 and shortstop Davontae Alexander, 32, who's .287 batting average was good enough for 10th in the league in the best season of his career. Pineda finished 4th in MVP voting and Cuéllar finished with 28 home runs and 126 RBIs, enough to be selected to the All-League team and finally giving the team the big bat in the middle of the lineup it was lacking for so long. Although without an all-star honour this season due to a slow start, 26-year-old left fielder Denny Welch turned it around in the second half to finish with a .263/.316/.469 slash line with career-highs 20 home runs, 101 RBIs, and 26 stolen bases. It will be up to relatively younger players like Welch as well as 25-year-olds Guest, second baseman Arnold Humphrey, who won the Gold Glove award this season, and third baseman Wesley Bollinger to take the mantle and fuel the Tigers' lineup for the next few years, not to mention the extraordinarily high 8 position players in AAA nipping at their heels.

On the pitching side, 31-year-old ace Alfredo Lira (17-14) again dragged the rotation to spurious competency, pitching a no-longer-surprising 283 innings with a 3.46 ERA and finishing 5th in Cy Young voting. Although concerns have already started to emerge regarding the state of an arm that has 2,396 innings of mileage in 9 major league seasons, Lira's results show no signs of slowing down despite a fastball that's trending down. 29-year-old Dion Carroll (13-14) did his best to provide a reliable #2 option, pitching a career-high 261 innings with a 4.28 ERA - likely overtaxing his arm as he faded down the stretch while blowing past all conventional inning limits. Lira and Carroll combined for 14 complete games and more than a third of the team's total innings pitched. Outside their two workhorses, the Tigers struggled to cobble together a starting rotation on any consistent basis. 24-year-old rookie starter Johnny Knutson (8-11) showed specious flashes of promise but looked mostly in above his head with a 4.86 ERA in 179 innings. One relatively bright spark was the play of Wally Esposito (7-3), 23, who took his AAA demotion in stride and returned with a vengeance that timed perfectly with the team's turnaround, finishing with a 3.56 ERA in 96 innings.

In the bullpen, Deon Warner, 33, led the league in saves for the fifth straight season, finishing with 42 saves and earning another All-League selection. However, the sublime closer started showing signs of mortality as his 7 blown saves in 2034 was more than twice the total number of saves he had blown in the two seasons prior. Left handed specialist Josué Arellano, 33, saw his remarkable streak of more than two seasons without an earned run come to an end, although he posted a career-high 15 holds. 26-year-old rookie Roger Tremblay was named the league's Rookie Pitcher of the Year as he impressed with a sparkling 1.99 ERA in 72 innings and the 6'6" Canadian finished with a team-high 17 holds as he pitched in a high-leverage setup role. The team combined for 68 holds, again leading the league by almost 20 holds - a testament to not only the Tigers' reliance on the bullpen, but also Manager Rueben Sanchez's liberal use of relief pitchers.

Off the field, the team announced a change in its front office as Amelia Chen was promoted to replace Andrew Campbell as the team's Director of Scouting and is the first woman to hold the position in all of baseball. While acknowledging the historical nature of Chen's hiring, President Lee emphasized her competency, leadership, and "extensive track record of identifying promising young players" as an amateur scout for the team. Chen joins third base coach Isabel Dubois, now in her second season with the major league team, as female trailblazers in the Minneapolis Tigers organization.

Source: Press Release

Jan 15 2034: 2033 Season Review - by xLee227 on October 7th, 2017

For the first time in franchise history, the Minneapolis Tigers will be playing in the top-division Legends League. Since spending 2024 in Division 6, the franchise has skyrocketed up the rankings and will contend with the best teams in the world after a stellar 94-66 championship season in tier-two League II.1.

The two players at the centre of the team’s success, Leonardo Pineda and Alfredo Lira, are also the longest tenured players on the team having been drafted as 16-year-olds in 2018 and 2019 respectively. With his fourth All-League selection, the 32-year-old Pineda anchored the team’s lineup with a customarily excellent season batting .298/.342/.507 and posting gaudy counting stats of 182 hits, 116 RBI, and 41 stolen bases. Pineda finished in the top-ten of 5 league statistics and placed third in league MVP voting.

Now 31, Lira has been a stalwart in the team’s rotation pitching 1,919 innings since 2024, averaging an astonishing 264 innings pitched in the last five seasons. Lira’s 2033 season was more solid than spectacular, understandably taking some steps back from his 2032 Cy Young campaign as he finished with a 19-11 record, 3.65 ERA, and 1.173 WHIP, sixth-best in the league. In a world where the strikeout is king, the strikeout-averse Lira has consistently found an alternative way to succeed using his crafty delivery and command.

No. 2 starter Dion Carroll pitched a career-high 249 innings and earned a career-high 17 wins with a 3.83 ERA as the team’s lack of reliable starting depth meant the top two starters pitched a combined 510 innings. Fortunately for the team, the bullpen was up to the task, with a combined 57 holds to lead the league by a mile. Setup men Stu Bates and Rubén Alvarado combined for the bulk of those holds as they consistently helped bridge the gap to closer Deon Warner, 33, who had another stellar season and earned his third All-League honour with a 49-save, 2.17 ERA campaign averaging a strikeout an inning.

On the batting side, 31-year-old third baseman Francisco Maya bounced back from a subpar 2032 season to earn his first All-League honour with a .292/.381/.404 slash line in the leadoff spot, spurred by a torrid second half of the season in particular. Maya finished 4th in the league in OBP and 3rd with 104 runs, just behind the league-leading 107 runs posted by 25-year-old breakout star Arnold Humphrey in his sophomore year. With ample playing time since being called up in 2032, Humphrey has rewarded management’s patience with a solid year batting .289/.357/.455 not to mention stealing 42 bases and a rapidly improving defensive game at second base.

An important offseason looms for the team, as management looks to improve on the in-season acquisitions of mercurial pitchers Raul Murillo, 31, and Álvaro García, 28. Neither Murillo nor García impressed with ghastly ERA’s over 6 and García giving up a near-unfathomable 2 home runs per 9 innings. Trade Deadline rental Bruce Perry, 35, helped shore up the team’s lineup down the stretch and provided some power to a team that garnered the fewest home runs in the league last season.

Leroy Forte, 35, has been a franchise regular since signing with the team in 2026. Equally comfortable at shortstop and in the outfield, Forte’s departure in free agency means finding a bench bat with strong offensive abilities will be a priority for the team this offseason. In addition, it’s decision time for the team’s young pitchers, with a ridiculous 10 pitchers between 23 and 27 vying for just 3 spots on the major league roster.

Mar 20 2033: 2033 Season Preview - by xLee227 on August 6th, 2017

The Tigers go into their second-ever season in Division 2 after a dominant year resulting in a championship in League III.2 last season. The team's performance was largely propelled by a Cy Young-season from ace Alfredo Lira and a MVP-finalist year from shortstop/outfielder Leroy Forte, who won the league batting title with a surprising career renaissance at age 33.

As the team had already essentially clinched the division with a third of the season still to go, the Tigers were able to give extensive playing time to their youngsters, experience that should prove helpful this year. With 11 players in their first or second year in the majors, the team has a distinct youthful vibe and will be hoping that energy translates on to the field. The team's youth brigade is highlighted by 24-year-old second baseman Arnold Humphrey, who is at the forefront of the team's dizzying array of young talent in the high minors that is starting to trickle onto the major league squad.

In the off-season, the team bid farewell to 34-year-old first baseman Wayne Burton, who was acquired at the start of the 2029 season and made an immediate impact by being named league MVP in 2030. It marked the high point of a brief but spectacular stint with the Tigers, as he amassed all-star honours in 3 out of his 4 seasons with the club. Mid-season rental Hugh McKenzie, 34, also left in free agency and his rotation spot will be filled by one of the team's plethora of young pitchers.

The Tigers signed a pair of major-league-ready 23-year-old's in the off-season, starting pitcher Jason Larson and second baseman/outfielder Todd Kawaguchi. Larson made his major-league debut at age 21 in Division 2 with Monterey but has since bounced between AAA and the big leagues. The lefty will start in the majors to get some experience in the cup. Kawaguchi was also called up for the start of the season, and will man centre field for the team in group cup play.

Overall, the team will be looking on their youth to take a collective step forward. While the Tigers' lack of experience all but ensures they will not be in contention to promote, the team's realistic goal for 2032 is to merely tread water for the year and give their young players time to develop.

Mar 02 2032: 2031 Season Review and 2032 Season Preview - by xLee227 on May 13th, 2017

The Tigers' first season in Division II in 2031 was promising if ultimately disappointing. Although they kept pace for much of the season, the team’s lack of depth meant a 6-game losing streak in late August was too much to overcome.

30-year-old former MVP Leonardo Pineda had yet another terrific season, with 27 home runs (126 RBI), 55 stolen bases, and a .899 OPS as he finished second in MVP voting and earned his third straight All-League nominee.

Ace Alfredo Lira, 29, turned in his most dominant season yet, going 15-10 with a 3.11 ERA in 249 innings as he valiantly struggled to carry the team’s rotation through the season. In the bullpen, 31-year-old closer Deon Warner had another impressive season, with 42 saves as he locked down the traditionally shaky ninth inning role for the team.

The team’s youngsters ultimately disappointed, with the hitters often batting below the Mendoza line and the pitchers looking overwhelmed, giving up copious amounts of walks, hits, and runs.

The team also said farewell to a pair of long-time pitching stalwarts and former Cy Young winners, Sebastián Mora and Kendrick Brewer. The two combined for 3,300 innings with the team and will likely join the Hall of Fame down the road along with Tyler White and Ryan Hornsby, who will be honoured before the team’s season opener.

In League III.2 for the first time in franchise history, the team will be looking to advance back to Division II quickly. That being said, the team’s core is now collectively entering its 30s, raising questions about who will succeed them. Younger veterans such as catcher Ignacio Paredes, 24, starter Hilário Zepeda, 25, and outfielder Edward Brown, 26 will be looking to help contribute more to the team.

In particular, the team demonstrated a lack of power last season, hitting the fewest home runs in the league and often grounding into double plays. A particular area of focus for the team this season will be on getting the ball in the air more and of course continuing to improve plate discipline.

Jan 15 2031: 2030 Season Review: An Extraordinary Season - by xLee227 on February 17th, 2017

The 2030 season was an extraordinary one for the Minneapolis Tigers franchise as they earned promotion to Division II for the first time in history, clinching on the last day of the regular season. Although they lost a hard-fought 7-game series against the Ventura Aces in the finals of the League III.1 playoffs, the team nonetheless far exceeded its original goal of avoiding relegation.

The Tigers finished with a regular season of 91-69, and won the East Division title despite a lackluster +55 run differential, narrowly beating out Jacksonville and Raleigh by the slimmest of margins. Manager Rueben Sanchez has now led the team to the playoffs in both of his seasons at the helm, and has drawn plaudits for his comprehensive work, especially in terms of getting the most out of his players. Sanchez however was quick to deflect praise to “the guys who battled real hard every day,” commending them for embracing a hard-working culture of improvement and refinement.

On the field, a Tiger was voted League MVP for the second consecutive season, with the honour this time going to first baseman Wayne Burton, 31. The league’s batting champion (.315) and OPS leader (.952), Burton also had 34 home runs and drove in 134 runs. Forming a potent duo with Burton in the heart of the order, 28-year-old Leonardo Pineda also placed in the League's top 10 this season with 98 runs while stealing an impressive 61 bases. Pineda, who was voted League MVP last season, also earned All-League honours along with Burton for the second straight season.

Third baseman Francisco Maya, 27, regressed a bit from his breakout campaign last season but still did a good job setting the table for the team with a .345 OBP. Moved up the critical 2-spot, 33-year-old outfielder Dwight Bradshaw had a solid .270/.346/.374 triple slash line in his first full major-league season while also posting 73 stolen bases, good for second in the league and third in club history. 22-year-old catcher Ignacio Paredes impressed with his outstanding defensive skills behind the plate. His perfect fielding percentage, solid pitch framing skills, and 42.4% rate of throwing out baserunners contributed to his first Gold Glove award.

On the pitching side, Deon Warner, 29, had a breakout season in his first season as the closer, leading the league and setting the single season franchise record with 52 saves, earning him a spot on the All-league team for the first time in his career. 2029 Cy Young winner Sebastián Mora had a rocky start to the season but turned it around down the stretch, finishing eight in the league with a 3.23 ERA while pitching over 200 innings for the fifth consecutive season. His earned his 117th win of the season in the penultimate game of the regular season out of the bullpen on short rest, tying a franchise-record for career wins. 27-year-old lefty Alfredo Lira had another solid season, finishing with a team-leading 19-10 record and 257 innings with a respectable 3.68 ERA.

The front office had a busy season as well, acquiring eight-time All-Star Glenn Carlton, 35, and veteran setup man Larry Peterson to shore up the lineup and bullpen respectively. In particular, Warner, Peterson, and former division-1 veteran James McCarthy solidified what has historically been a major weakness for the franchise, the back-end of the bullpen.

The end of the 2030 season also marked the retirement of 35-year-old slugger Ramiro Destrade. A four time all-star who joined the Tigers in 2023 after defecting from Cuba at age 28, Destrade has been a mainstay in the lineup ever since, hitting .293/.359/.460 in 1,024 games at the top of the lineup for over half a decade. In terms of franchise records, he finishes his career ranked 7th in OPS (.460), 6th in Slugging (.460), 7th in OBP (.359), 14th in runs (551), and 16th in hits (1004). Destrade said that he was “extremely lucky” to spent his entire career starring for a single franchise, thanking President Lee and the entire management group for their “professionalism, dedication, and integrity.” He will spend some time with his family away from the game before deciding on what he will do after an outstanding playing career.

In terms of prospects, 20-year-old third baseman Antonio Soto and 23-year-old infielder Mateo Lucero made their major league debuts in backup roles off the bench. Reclamation project Carmelo Morales, 26, had a rough rookie season, finishing with a 6.01 ERA in 91 innings, and is looking less and less likely to fulfill his gaudy potential. Pitchers Jose Espinosa and Rubén Alvarado were solid with the triple-A Hanalei Honu and will look to compete for a job on the major league squad during spring training next season. The Tigers' #2 ranked prospect, 22-year-old second baseman Arnold Humphrey was promoted to AAA at the end of the season and will start in Hanalei in 2031. With an outstanding hitting stroke to pair with above-average defense and terrific speed, Humphrey posted a .319/.394/.474 line in AA Ahuimanu last season and will likely get the call sooner rather than later.

Overall, the Tigers had an exceptional 2030 season and the team's leadership looks forward to the challenges of Division-II baseball next season.