Thursday Night, August 9, 2007
Twins Shutout Again
Less than 18 hours after scoring 11 runs against the Royals, the Twins were shutout by Kyle Davies in another 1-0 game. Here are some thoughts:
That is the second time in his last five games that Matt Garza lost a 1-0 decision. At least this time the one run he gave up was earned! Garza gave up the run on four hits over 6.2 innings. He walked none and struck out six. Another excellent performance. He is now just 1-3, but his ERA is just 1.70.
Davies came to the Royals at the trade deadline from the Braves in exchange for Octavio Dotel. You may remember that on June 12th, as a member of the Braves, Davies gave up five earned runs on six hits and two walks over just 3.2 innings in a 7-3 loss to the Twins.
I've been meaning to say this the last couple of weeks with the Twins playing the Royals so much, but... didn't Zach Greinke come up with comparisons to Greg Maddux? I thought he was known as a control pitcher who needed to spot pitches because he didn't throw very hard. Maybe it is pitching out of the bullpen, but Greinke now throws gas. I realize he doesn't throw the 102 mph that the FSN has shown, but I am certain he now reaches into the upper-90s.
The Twins Rule V pick in last December's Major League Rule V draft? Alejandro Machado. The Royals Rule V pick at the same time, the #1 pick? Joakim Soria, who has done a great job pitching out of the Royals bullpen.
The Twins managed just four hits, but there was one positive. First, Alexi Casilla got to be the team's leadoff hitter. Second, after getting out in his first at bat, he walked, then had two singles. He also stole his fifth base. Hopefully such a performance will keep him there for awhile.
I seriously just can't help but feel bad for Brian Buscher. I'm in the 'he's not the long-term answer at 3B' camp, but he was just given a chance at the age of 26. First and foremost, I hope he is alright. Second, I hope he plays his way back into a a shot. I'd hate to see another Glenn Williams like situation.
Jason Kubel had a nice game. He went 1-3 with a double and a walk.
Rondell White should really just be Designated for Assignment. He is now 1 for his last 16, and has really looked lost. I think I'd take my chance with Lew Ford, or Darnell McDonald, or (gasp) Denard Span! I'd say Ben Revere, but that might make me lose all credibility!
Michael Cuddyer with the Golden Sombraro! A nice 0-4 with four strikeouts! Not a great day. He went 3-5 with a homer on Wednesday night. However, in his past five games (including that game), he is 3-21, a .143 average. Justin Morneau is hitting .143 (5-35) over his past nine games.
Seth Opinion - A couple weeks ago, before the trade deadline, I wrote my It's Over posting. They proceeded to lose two more. Then they won four straight. Then they lost two. Then won two, then lost two. Then won one. And now lose one. A team that wants to contend for a playoff spot needs to be a LOT more consistent than that. Although the pitching has generally been very good since the all-star game, the bats just can't consistently produce. The stars have been inconsistent, and the 'lesser' players have performed to the low expectations. I want the team to win. I do! I hope they turn it around. But the key is to find a way to be consistent!
After this afternoon's game, the Twins flew out to LA and will start a three game series against the the Angels. Friday night, Scott Baker will face Kelvim Escobar. Saturday night, it will be Carlos Silva against John Lackey. Finally on Sunday afternoon, Boof Bonser will go up against Jered Weaver. Not good pitching matchups, but again, the Twins pitchers have been doing well.
More on the Angels' bats:
Reggie Willets has gone 9-28 (.321) in his last nine games.
Chone Figgins has been remarkable. In his first 25 games after starting the season on the DL, he went 12-90 (.133). In the 59 games since then, he has hit .416 (102-245). More recently, he is 14-35 (.400) in his last nine games.
Orlando Cabrera is one Angel batter who is struggling. He has gone 6-30 (.200) in his last six games.
Vlad Guerrero has gone 14-31 (.452) over his last eight games. To start that streak, he hit two home runs in back-to-back games. He hasn't homered in the five games since then, but he has walked seven times.
Casey Kotchman is 9-23 (.391) over the past six games. Four of the hits are doubles.
Their regular catcher Mike Napoli is on the DL. Jeff Mathis has had to start. In his past eight games, he is 3-23. That's a nice .130 average. But two of the hits are doubles.
That is it for now. I'll be back with the minor league report later. I need to get some sleep tonight since the Twins are playing out on the west coast. That means late start times!!|
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