September 9, 2018

Too bad: Twins’ Gonsalves doesn’t appear ready for prime time

Despite winning 53 games in the minors, starting pitcher Stephen Gonsalves, who has made four starts since being called up by the Twins, has struggled in every appearance, including on Friday.

Gonsalves gave up five earned runs in two-plus innings, but the Twins had his back and rallied for a 10-6 victory over the Kansas City Royals. Gonsalves is 0-2 with an 11.68 ERA, and he has walked more batters than innings pitched (13 base on balls to 12.1 innings pitched).

Gonsalves might benefit from an “opener,” in which a reliever starts the game, so that the starting pitcher or “primary pitcher” can get off to a better start by facing the weaker part of the lineup. It helped Twins pitcher Kohl Stewart in his last appearance. Stewart followed the “opener,” and pitched five scoreless innings.

Chase De Jong, who came to the Twins via the Seattle Mariners for reliever Zach Duke, gets the ball Sunday.

Extra innings…

-After scoring 10 runs on 12 hits in Friday’s game, the Twins had all of one hit and one run in a 4-1 loss to the Royals on Saturday. In fact, the Twins just avoided being no-hit by Royals’ starter, Jorge Lopez. Lopez, according to MLB.com, took a perfect game into the ninth inning before giving up a walk to Max Kepler (which took care of the perfect game) and a hit to Robbie Grossman (which killed the no-hitter).

-The Twins are 31-30 against the AL Central. Against the Royals, a team that is nearly 50 games under .500, the Twins are 7-7.

COMMENTS

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.