June 13, 2017

About that pitching…

Pitchers Kyle Gibson, Ervin Santana and Jose Berrios all looked good in their respective wins last week, but things didn’t look so good on Sunday and Monday.

The bullpen was hammered in a 13-8 loss to the San Francisco Giants — Matt Belisle and Craig Breslow gave up nine runs in the 7th and 8th innings — and starting pitching got roughed up Monday in a 14-3 loss to the Seattle Mariners. Adalberto Mejia lasted only three-plus innings, surrendering nine runs, eight of them earned.

And the bullpen Monday, apparently in need of a break, meant that backup catcher Chris Gimenez pitched the final inning of the game. No surprise: He gave up two runs on three hits. It was his fifth relief appearance (!) this season, according to MLB.com.

All of this led up to Monday’s MLB draft, in which the Twins had the No. 1 overall pick. After the Sunday and Monday pitching performances, it’s not too much of a stretch to think that Falvey & Co. would be focused on a pitcher with that top pick. Instead, they selected a shortstop.

Gibson gets the ball on Tuesday.

Extra innings…

-The Twins’ No. 1 overall selection was Royce Lewis, a shortstop out of Southern California who played for JSerra Catholic High School.

MLB.com’s Rhett Bollinger had this to say about Lewis:

Lewis, 18, has the most complete package of tools of any player in the class. He is an incredible athlete with a knack for getting the barrel of the bat on the ball, and his 70-grade speed (on the 20-80 scouting scale) manifests itself on both sides of the ball, while the Twins also project the 6-foot-1, 185-pounder to grow into power, as he once hit a homer out of Wrigley Field as part of an Under Armour showcase. They also see him as a shortstop instead of a center fielder.

-Nik Turley, who toiled in the minors for nine years before making his first pitching start for the Twins on Sunday, came away with a no-decision. He gave the Twins four innings, surrendering eight hits and four runs, all earned, with no walks and four strikeouts.


Hi, I’m Rolf Boone, Twins fan.

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.