North Battleford’s Andrew Albers isn’t taking long to make his mark in affiliated baseball. He was named the International League’s pitcher of the week after a complete game, 91-pitch three hitter on May 11.
“Those awards are always nice, but there’s a lot more that goes into them than just my performance,” Albers explained. “The defence was outstanding behind me and my catcher, J.R. Murphy, did a great job behind the plate. It’s nice to get recognized but that’s a team deal rather than an individual accomplishment.”
Albers gave up just three hits and one run during the Rochester Red Wings 7-1 win over the Gwinnet Braves. It was just his second start with the Red Wings after joining them from the Independent League’s Lancaster Barnstormers. Albers said he caught a break at the right time to get to Rochester.
“The (Minnesota) Twins had a couple injuries and they needed someone to pitch for them in Triple-A. I had pitched for a few coaches in the organization before so they had an idea of what I could do, so I just have to make the most of it,” he said.
Albers played with the Red Wings in 2013 and said he’s excited to be back in Rochester. He also played previously with a number of players on the team.
Through his first four starts with Rochester, Albers posted a 2-0 record with a 3.76 ERA in 26.1 innings pitched. He’s struck out 14 batters while walking just six. As of May 19, the Red Wings sit in second place in the North division. The team is just half a game behind the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders, who are the AAA affiliate of the New York Yankees.
Albers said there’s always a chance to get called-up to pitch with Minnesota.
“You have to perform down here and if you’re the guy who’s performing the best, maybe you’ll be the guy who gets that chance. You just never know, that’s always the ultimate goal. They’ve had some injuries up there and some holes they’re trying to fill and if I can perform well down here, maybe I can get another opportunity up there,” he said.
Albers made his MLB debut with the Twins in 2013, finishing the season with the team and posting a 2-5 record with a 4.05 ERA in 60 innings. He also appeared in one game for the Toronto Blue Jays last season, pitching 2.2 innings.
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