July 16, 2016

Twins start second half with loss to Tribe

Update: After nearly four hours of play, the Twins finally beat the Indians in walk-off fashion after an error in the bottom of the 11th inning scored the winning run. The Twins tied the game at 4-4 in the seventh and then watched as it was delayed by rain for two hours in the top of the 11th, according to MLB.com. Once play resumed, the Twins scored the walk-off run to win 5-4. Starter Tyler Duffey gave them six-plus innings, but surrendered four runs, all earned. Six relievers combined to shutout the Indians the rest of the way. Longview, Washington native Trevor May got the win, his first.

Despite the Indians deep rotation, the Twins and Tribe have had a close and competitive rivalry this season. So far they have met eight times and five of those games, including Saturday’s, have been decided by one run.

Other than the nearly four-hour game time, the only other thing that stands out is that Miguel Sano committed two more errors to give him 10 on the season. The Twins now have committed 65 errors this season, the most in the American League.

Went to watch Triple-A baseball on Saturday — Tacoma Rainiers vs. Colorado Springs Sky Sox — and discovered that old friend Josmil Pinto is playing for the Sox. He’s currently hitting .350 for the Milwaukee Brewers affiliate. Pinto spent two seasons with the Twins in 2013-2014.

Former Twins outfielder Torii Hunter was inducted into the Twins Hall of Fame before Saturday’s game. Hunter spent 12 of his 19 seasons in baseball with the Twins. Hunter was a five-time All-Star and nine-time gold gloves winner. Some career numbers: .277 batting average, 2,452 hits, 353 home runs and 1,391 RBIs.

Kyle Gibson gets the ball on Sunday.

Original post: The Twins on Friday lost 5-2 to the Cleveland Indians, a team just as imposing as the Texas Rangers. But the Twins had their way with the Rangers before the break, beating them in blowout fashion, including a 15-5 victory last Sunday. So Rangers’ pitching might be susceptible to some improved team hitting from the Twins. Now, let’s see how those bats fare against the No. 1 ranked pitching staff in the American League.

 

After Friday’s loss to Carlos Carrasco, who improved to 6-3, the Twins will face Trevor Bauer (7-3, 3.30 ERA) on Saturday, followed by Josh Tomlin (9-2, 3.51 ERA) on Sunday. Fortunately, they don’t have to face Danny Salazar (10-3, 2.75 ERA), or former Cy Young award winner, Corey Kluber (9-8, 3.61 ERA).

How’s that for a five-man rotation? And all have contributed to an AL-best team ERA of 3.63, while also helping the Tribe rattle off a 14-game winning streak before the break. The Twins’ team ERA remains dead last in the AL at 4.97. The Twins have shown recent improvement at the plate, but the pitching… well…

Extra innings:

-Once again starter Ervin Santana wasn’t terrible, but once again he didn’t pitch well enough to get the win and fell to 3-8 on the season. And once again he didn’t get a whole lot of help behind him after Miguel Sano committed another error at third base by throwing wide of first base. This record has been played before.

-Second baseman Brian Dozier hit his team-leading 15th home run on Friday, but it was one of only four hits the team could muster against the Tribe’s Carrasco.

-Old friend Jeff Manship made a scoreless relief appearance for the Indians, striking out two. Manship was drafted by the Twins in 2006 and later spent four seasons with the team.

Tyler Duffey goes for his fourth straight win on Saturday.

 

 

 

July 13, 2016

Huh? Twins’ Nunez sees little playing time in first All-Star game

As if this season needed to get any worse, Eduardo Nunez, the only member of the Twins to be named to Tuesday’s All-Star game, didn’t get a chance to contribute to the American League’s 4-2 win. Instead, as noted by MLB.com, he sat for eight innings and then came in as a defensive replacement to... Continue Reading »

July 11, 2016

Hey, something’s brewing with the Twins, folks

After posting losing records in April, May and June, and falling so far behind in the AL Central that it appeared as if the Twins might set some records for futility, the team heads into the All-Star break looking like a completely different team. Suddenly, the Twins can hit, pitch and play defense, all of... Continue Reading »

July 8, 2016

Twins top Rangers as tragedy unfolds in Dallas

Update: Outfielder Eddie Rosario, who struggled at the plate earlier in the year and then compounded things with some crummy base running, “redemptified” — to quote Max Kepler — himself Saturday night, going four-for-five at the plate, including two doubles and a home run to beat the Rangers 8-6. Ricky Nolasco finally picked up his... Continue Reading »

July 6, 2016

Twins’ Milone finally wins a game

Update: Ervin Santana not only pitched his best game of the season on Wednesday, but he pitched one of his best games in years, throwing a two-hit, complete game with eight strikeouts and no walks to shutout the A’s 4-0 — and he did it in exactly 100 pitches. Don’t look now, but the Twins... Continue Reading »

July 4, 2016

Welcome back, Miguel Sano! (to 3B or DH, that is)

Twins slugger Miguel Sano is back with the team after completing a rehab assignment at Triple-A Rochester, and he appears to have picked up where he left off in both good and bad ways. The good side of the ledger is that Sano, despite some uninspiring numbers during his rehab stint, can hit major league... Continue Reading »

June 29, 2016

Twins finally snap six-game losing streak to White Sox with shutout win

Update: The good news is that Brian Dozier continues to mash, collecting an extra-base hit in his 11th straight game and taking over the team lead in home runs with 13. The bad news is this: What in the world do the Twins do with their rotation? Kyle Gibson and Tyler Duffey will win the... Continue Reading »

June 28, 2016

New York media piles on after Twins beat Yanks

The Twins pulled off the unthinkable on Sunday, beating the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium with six home runs and a pitching performance that was nearly perfect, including eight strikeouts, from starter Tyler Duffey. But that kind of loss apparently doesn’t sit well with the New York media, which are no doubt accustomed to... Continue Reading »

June 25, 2016

Now the Twins’ season could get really ugly

Update: The Twins got their one win against the Yankees on Sunday and it happened in incredible fashion: six home runs backed starter Tyler Duffey, who was perfect through six innings. He eventually went eight innings, allowing only two hits and one run, while striking out eight. The Twins got home runs from Danny Santana,... Continue Reading »

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Hi, I’m Rolf Boone and I love the Twins.

I became a fan of the Minnesota Twins after a friendly wager in the early 1980s. I survived Ron Davis, the meltdown in Cleveland, Phil Bradley at the Kingdome and then marveled at a rising generation of stars and two World Series wins in 1987 and 1991. Brad Radke made the 1990s bearable, while Kirby Puckett’s eye injury, exit from the game and eventual death made it almost too much to bear. The new century ushered in more talent — Joe Mauer, Johan Santana, Joe Nathan, Torii Hunter, Justin Morneau — and consecutive seasons of playoff baseball, followed by consecutive seasons of losing baseball. A winning season returned in 2015. So here we are. Go Twins.