Vargas and Berrios named 2014 Twins Minor League Player and Pitcher of the Year

Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN-The Minnesota Twins announced today that first baseman/designated hitter Kennys Vargas has been named the 2014 Sherry Robertson Award winner as the Twins Minor League Player of the Year and right-handed pitcher Jose Berrios has been named the 2014 Jim Rantz Award winner as the Twins Minor League Pitcher of the Year.

Vargas, 24, began the season at Double-A New Britain and batted .281 (100-for-356) with 17 doubles, 17 home runs, 63 RBI, 50 runs scored and 43 walks in 97 games with the Rock Cats. He was promoted to the major league club August 1 and is batting .288 (57-for-198) with nine doubles, one triple, nine home runs, 38 RBI and 24 runs scored in 47 games with the Twins.

The 6-foot-5, 270-pounder was the Twins Minor League Player of the Week in early May, batting .476 (10-for-21) with two doubles, three home runs and seven RBI in seven games with New Britain. Vargas was selected to play in the SiriusXM Futures Game at Target Field over the All-Star break and was also named Eastern League Midseason All-Star.

Berrios, 20, began the season at Single-A Ft. Myers and went 9-3, 1.96 ERA (96.1 IP, 21 ER), allowing 78 hits with 23 walks and 109 strikeouts in 16 starts. He was promoted to Double-A New Britain July 7 and went 3-4, 3.54 ERA (40.2 IP, 16 ER), allowing 33 hits with 12 walks and 28 strikeouts in eight starts. Berrios was placed on the disabled list August 2 with a right shoulder strain and reinstated August 10. He made one start with Triple-A Rochester, going 0-1, 18.00 ERA (3.0 IP, 6 ER).

The 6-foot, 187-pounder was a two-time Florida State League Pitcher of the Week in 2014, earning the honors for the weeks ending June 2 and June 23. Additionally, he was named to the Florida State League Midseason and Postseason All-Star Teams. He was second among all Twins minor leaguers in wins (12) and strikeouts (111). Berrios was the starting pitcher for the World Team in the SiriusXM Futures Game at Target Field on July 13, tossing a perfect 1.0 inning with one strikeout.

The Sherry Robertson Award, named in honor of the Twins first farm director, was established in 1970 to recognize the Twins top minor league performer each season. Beginning in 2002, the award began recognizing the Twins Minor League Player of the Year while an additional award was created to recognize the Twins Minor League Pitcher of the Year. This award was named in honor of former Twins Minor League Director and Twins Hall of Famer, Jim Rantz. Past winners of the Sherry Robertson Award include: Butch Wynegar (1974), Kent Hrbek (1981), Gene Larkin (1986), Paul Sorrento (1989), Denny Neagle (1990), Marty Cordova (1992), LaTroy Hawkins (1993 and '94), Todd Walker (1996), David Ortiz (1997), Doug Mientkiewicz (1998), Michael Restovich (1999), Michael Cuddyer (2001), Lew Ford (2002), Joe Mauer (2003), Jason Kubel (2004), Alexi Casilla (2006), Brian Buscher (2007), Brian Dozier (2011) and Oswaldo Arcia (2012), while J.D. Durbin (2002), Jesse Crain (2003), Scott Baker (2004), Francisco Liriano (2005), Matt Garza (2006), Kevin Slowey (2007), Kyle Gibson (2010) and Liam Hendriks (2011) have won the Jim Rantz Award.

Both Vargas and Berrios, along with the other Twins 2014 award winners will be recognized at the Tenth Annual Diamond Awards dinner, which will be held on Thursday, January 22, 2015, beginning at 5:30 p.m. at Target Field.