Friday, June 13, 2008
Happy Friday, and Happy Friday the 13th! Hopefully you have a great day. With baseball players generally being so superstitious, it could be an interesting day to watch games! Today, I've got several Twins notes, including some about another Twins big loss last night and more.
The big story of the day yesterday was the release of Juan Rincon. He went through waivers with no team claiming him, so Gardy talked to him and the ball is in Rincon's hands. He has a 72 hour window where he and his agent can find out what is available to him. His other option? The Twins offered him the right to go play in AAA Rochester and do some starting. My guess is that he will choose to become a free agent, and for him, I think it is the right choice. This move clearly had to happen. Again, reality is the since his suspension, he has not been the same pitcher. Many fans seemingly want to crucify him for that event, but I am going to remain consistent in my response to that... until someone proves to me that he was gaining a competitive advantage (in other words, doing something that many or even most others were doing), then I am going to choose to remember him as a dominant set up man. I wish him well.
The Twins also decided that they will use Monday's day off to push Nick Blackburn back a couple of days in the rotation. Apparently he has a somewhat sore elbow, and that is something that I hope that he and the Twins are not taking too lightly. Hopefully it is nothing and giving a few extra days between starts will be exactly what he needs.
I thought it was strange the Delmon Young was not in the lineup against the lefty Aaron Laffey. Jason Kubel was in LF with Craig Monroe as DH. It was impossible to get Young out of the lineup for so long, and now he has been out of three games in the last three weeks. It was strange to me also that the TV crew (Dick & Bert) didn't really discuss it. Hopefully it is just a game off and he'll be in all three games in Milwaukee this weekend.
I have not given much credence to the idea of putting Brian Bass on waivers to this point. My standard response was that he was fine, that his role was in blowout types of games and he was doing fine in that way. But he has not done well of late, really for the last several weeks. At this point, I'm close to being able to say that the Twins shouldn't hesitate to put him on waivers and try to pass him through to Rochester.
Congratulations to Matt Macri, who hit his first big league homer, a long blast to left field.
The Twins had just seven hits in the game, but Joe Mauer went 2-4 and Justin Morneau was 3-3.
The other story of last night's game was again Livan Hernandez. It is interesting that there are still some out there who look at that 6-4 record and think that he is pitching well. His ERA is now up to 5.84 which is horrible. Bert Blyleven says things like "Livan will give up more than a hit an inning." Well, yeah, last night, he gave up four per inning (or 12 in just three innings). He just has absolutely nothing. I think that when he is doing alright and getting hitters out, the reality is that they get themselves out, probably lunging for the pitches that are that slow and that hittable. Here is how Livan Hernandez has done in his last five outings. As much as we'd like to think he's better than this, I just don't think he is. If they can get legitimate prospects for him at this point, they owe it to themselves to explore that! And to make it better... afte the game, Livan almost went all Milton Bradley!
|Past Five Games||24.1||56||28||4||6||0-2||10.36||2.47|
Any other Twins thoughts?
Twins Minor League Updates
Thursday SethSpeaks Player of the Day – Erik Lis, New Britain Rockcats
Thursday SethSpeaks Pitcher of the Day – Ryan Mullins, New Britain Rockcats
Thursday – Rochester 7, Durham 9 – Well, Jim Mandelaro has been whining all season long about how the Twins have let down the Red Wings by keeping them so short-handed. I would say that the Twins, and all other teams, will let their AAA affiliates play a man or even two short from time to time. That's not unusual. For some reason, some people thought that this roster was going to be good. That was probably misguided, and with the team playing incredibly horribly, it magnitudes the problem of roster spot openings. With that said, last night was something that should never, ever happen to any professional team. Brian Buscher was promoted. Jose Morales was put on the Disabled List. Howie Clark is hurt. Denard Span was apparently activated despite not being able to swing a bat. The Red Wings, in this game, played with only eight healthy hitters. Danny Graves, the team's starting pitcher in the game, batted ninth (and went 1-2). That was the team's only option. Now, a lot happened that apparently wasn't anticipated. But the Twins knew that Buscher was being called up. Clark has been hurting for a few days. Span is out. Morales was hurt a day earlier. In my mind, it is a bit ridiculous that the Red Wings were still in this position. Now, it is being reported that Jeff Christy is coming up to be a backup catcher. Apparently Alejandro Machado will come off of the disabled list tomorrow. The Red Wings lack talent throughout their standard lineup, so having no depth gives them no chance...
So, of course, they won this game and scored nine runs. Baseball is a funny game, isn't it?! Chris Basak went 2-4 with his ninth double and fifth home run. Garrett Jones and Jason Pridie were also 2-4. Ryan Jorgensen went 1-3 with a walk and his third home run. Danny Graves started and went 5.1 innings. He gave up three runs on eight hits. He struck out three and walked none. Mariano Gomez went the next 1.2 innings and gave up an unearned run on four hits. He also got a single in his lone at bat. Casey Daigle finished the last two innings and struck out four without allowing a run.
NEW BRITAIN NEWS
Thursday – New Britain 6, Altoona 5 – Steve Tolleson hit a double and then he walked. He was caught stealing and then left the game which, of course, prompted the question of if he had been promoted to Rochester. He certainly would deserve it! Erik Lis was again the top hitter. He went 3-4 with two more doubles and three RBI. He has 26 doubles now. Ryan Mullins improved to 6-4 with a great performance. In eight innings, he gave up one run on five hits and two walks. Frank Mata, who was promoted earlier in the day to replace Errol Simonitsch, who was released, threw a scoreless ninth.
FT MYERS MEMOS
Thursday – Ft. Myers/Vero Beach – Rained Out.
Thursday – Beloit/Cedar Rapids - Rained Out.
Have a great weekend! I'll be back.