Press Releases

A Minor change makes a major difference

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: (August 30, 2017)
Contact: Austin Anderson
219-882-BALL Ext. 229 

Corresponding Audio Interview

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — Right-handed starter Daniel Minor made arguably his best professional appearance on Monday in Sioux Falls as he threw a career-high 12 strikeouts in a no-decision for the Gary SouthShore RailCats. Minor did not allow a baserunner for the first five innings of the game; which Minor says is a lifetime high.

“I only threw four innings in [high school as me and a teammate] combined for a no hitter,” said Minor. “He walked someone in the fifth [to end] a perfect game. That’s the furthest I’ve taken one, I’m pretty sure.”

What’s even more impressive about Monday’s feat is that Minor just recently began starting for the first time since 2013 when he was pitching for the Houston Astros organization in Class-A with Quad Cities.

In five starts with the RailCats, Minor is 2-0 with a 1.00 ERA, only allowing three earned runs on 13 hits, while walking three batters in 27 innings of work.
When the RailCats acquired Minor via a trade on August 10, there was a vacancy in the starting rotation with fellow righty Charle Rosario being sent to Winnipeg in the same deal. Once Minor heard of the vacancy, he was very eager to become a starter once again.

“When I talked to Greg, he said I had the chance to start here. I’ve been waiting to do that for four years,” said Minor. “They gave me an opportunity, I went ahead and rolled with it, and make the most of being a starter here.”

Minor understandably admits that the transition between the bullpen and the rotation can be difficult.

“Being in condition to throw multiple innings, getting into six, seven, eight innings [instead of] three innings . . . [y]ou can get physically tired, but you can [also mentally] get tired,” said Minor. “When you come in [from the bullpen], you usually have to come into a game where you need to make good pitches. So, when you are starting, you kind of have that same mentality every inning.”

He says that his experience in every pitching role has helped him with this most recent transition.
“It’s really helped me [to have been] a middle reliever, setup guy, closer, I’ve done it all,” said Minor “I’ve enjoyed [starting] thus far.”

Minor mentions his favorite part about starting is seeing hitters multiple times through the order because of the familiarity and the ability to adjust between at bats.

Experience and hard work can help anyone with their craft. Minor learned this the hard way in 2015. After being cut by the Astros, Minor made his first stint in the American Association with the now-defunct Laredo Lemurs. His motivation for the game of baseball decreased after being cut from affiliated baseball, and self-admittingly, the lack of effort showed on the diamond.

In two relief appearances, Minor allowed six runs, four earned, and six hits in two innings of work. Laredo released Minor a week after he was signed and did not play professionally for over a year afterward.  

Minor says he found his love for the game again this season. “Now, I enjoy coming and playing baseball. I enjoy doing the running, and working out, and making sure I am ready every four days here,” he said. “And it’s nice because throwing every four days, if you are on a roll, it’s easy to stay locked in because you throw one less day than in a normal five-man rotation.”

Minor hopes his stays on a roll in what is likely his final regular-season start on Friday as the RailCats continue to push for a playoff spot.
Gary continues their four-game road trip against Sioux Falls on Wednesday night at 7:05 p.m. Southpaw Jeff McKenzie (4-4, 4.26) opposes Canaries right-hander Grady Wood (8-3, 2.60) in game three of the series. 

Gary returns home for a four-game homestand against the Lincoln Saltdogs starting on Friday to conclude the regular season. Friday’s game is “Breakfast” Club Night and a Fireworks Friday. We’ll have breakfast for dinner and play 80s music. Wear your pajamas to the ballpark and stick around after the game for an explosive Fifth Third Bank Fireworks Show!

Jared Shlensky and Austin Anderson bring you all 100 RailCats games this season on WEFM (95.9 FM) and online at Fans can purchase tickets for RailCats home games by calling (219) 882-BALL or online at The RailCats box office is open Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

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