Happy Birthday–February 20

Sam Rice (1890)
John Wesley Donaldson (1892)
Muddy Ruel (1896)
Pete Monahan (1902)
Tommy Henrich (1913)
Frankie Gustine (1920)
Jim Wilson (1922)
Roy Face (1928)
Shigeo Nagashima (1936)
Clyde Wright (1941)
Bill Gullickson (1959)
Shane Spencer (1972)
Livan Hernandez (1975)
Ryan Langerhans (1980)
Justin Verlander (1983)
Jose Morales (1983)
Brian McCann (1984)
Johnny Field (1992)

John Wesley Donaldson pitched in the Negro Leagues and averaged nearly twenty strikeouts per game for the All Nations team in the 1910s.  He pitched three consecutive no-hitters in 1913.

Pete Monahan played in the minors from 1921-1940, batting .301 and collecting 2,462 hits, but never played in the major leagues.

Third baseman Shigeo Nagashima played for the Yomiuri Giants from 1958-1974 and is considered by some to be the greatest player in the history of Japanese baseball.

We would also like to wish a happy birthday to CarterHayes' daughter.

Right-hander Eisler Livan Hernandez was with the Twins for roughly four months in 2008.  The half-brother of Orlando Hernandez, he is a native of Villa Clara, Cuba, which is where he went to high school.  He was signed by Florida as a free agent in 1996.  He struggled some in his first year in organized baseball, a season he split between AA and AAA as a 21-year-old, but he pitched fairly well in AAA in 1997 and reached the Marlins in mid-June.  He did very well, going 9-3, 3.18, helping lead the Marlins to the World Championship, and finishing second in Rookie of the Year voting.  Hernandez was not as good for the rest of his career with the Marlins, posting ERAs in the mid-fours through late July of 1999, when he was traded to San Francisco.  He finished that year and pitched the next three for the Giants.  His best year in San Francisco was 2000, when he went 17-11, 3.75.  In March of 2003, Hernandez was traded to Montreal and was and Expo/National until August of 2006.  He posted an ERA under four each year from 2003 through 2005 and made the all-star team twice.  In 2006, however, he was having a poor year when he was traded to Arizona.  He stayed with the Diamondbacks through 2007, when he became a free agent.  He signed with Minnesota for 2008.  He got off to a decent start, but deteriorated as the season went along:  as a Twin, he was 10-8, 5.48 with a WHIP of 1.63.  He was placed on waivers in August and claimed by Colorado, for whom he finished the season.  He signed with the Mets for 2009, was released in late August, and signed with Washington, for whom he finished the season.  He remained with Washington through 2011 and actually pitched fairly well for them.  He pitched 200 or more innings every season from 1998 through 2007, and pitched 175 innings or more every season from 1998 through 2011.  A free agent after the 2011 season, Livan Hernandez signed with Houston for 2012 but was released at the end of spring training.  He signed with Atlanta, pitched poorly in relief, was released in June, signed with Milwaukee a few days later, and continued to pitch poorly in relief.  He became a free agent after the season and did not sign with anyone, bringing his playing career to an end. It was a long and pretty decent career, though.  In 2014 he was said to have started a boxing management company, Team Knockout, based in Miami, but it is uncertain whether anything ever came of the venture.  At last report, Livan Hernandez was employed by the Washington Nationals as a batting practice pitcher and was also doing public relations work for the team.

Catcher Jose Guillermo Morales is the second of two players named Jose Morales to have played for the Twins.  This one was born in Rio Piedras, Puerto Rico, and attended high school there.  He was drafted by the Twins in the third round in 2001.  He was in rookie ball for two years, hitting .309 the second season.  He then was in A ball for two years and AA for two more years before reaching AAA Rochester in 2007.  Something seemed to click for him at AAA, because he hit over .300 three years in a row there.  Only one of those years was a full season--he was injured part of 2008 and was called up to the majors for much of 2009.  He hit over .300 in the majors in 2009, too, hitting .311 in 119 at-bats.  He was back in Rochester in 2010 but had a down year, batting .264.  He still got about six weeks in the majors, but hit just .194 in 36 at-bats.  As a Twin, he hit .297/.370/.354 in 158 at-bats.  Morales did not show power in the minors (his highest home run total was four) nor did he draw very many walks (his combined walk total in 2010, 42, was the highest of his career), and his defense was considered suspect, so he needed to hit for a high average to have much value.  The Twins apparently did not think it would happen, as they traded him to Colorado for Paul Bargas in December of 2010.  Morales was injured much of 2011, playing in only twenty-two games.  He became a free agent after the season, signed with Pittsburgh for 2012, and continued to have injury trouble, playing in only 58 AAA games.  He does not appear to have played anywhere in 2013, although he did play winter ball.  He played for Camden in the Atlantic League in 2014 and for Long Island in the same league in 2015, but then his playing career was over.  No information about what Jose Morales has done since 2015 was readily available.

Outfielder John David Field played for the Twins in the last two months of the 2018 season.  Born and raised in Las Vegas, he attended the University of Arizona and was drafted in the fifth round by Tampa Bay in 2013.  He did quite well in Class A in 2014, did okay in AA in 2015, and was fairly good in AAA in 2016.  That's about as good as it got for him.  He had a very average year in AAA in 2017, but still found himself in the majors for most of the 2018 season.  He was a reserve outfielder for the Rays, batting .213/.253/.373 in 179 plate appearances.  He was waived on July 24 and claimed by Cleveland.  He played in five games for AAA Columbus and was waived again on August 3.  This time the Twins claimed him and after sending him to Rochester for one game brought him to the majors.  He appeared in twenty-one games and made 54 plate appearances, batting .250/.259/.500 with three home runs and four doubles.  The Twins waived him after the season and he was claimed by the Cubs.  He turns twenty-seven today.  He's not really good enough to play in the majors, but if you had a bunch of injuries he's someone you could put out there and have him at least resemble a big league ballplayer in some respects.

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