During the 2020 season, the Twins, like every team in the majors, played most of their games against divisional rivals. The club was good enough to win a second straight AL Central title, but there was some scuttlebutt: Would the Twins have won the central if they had played outside the division last season?
That question is likely weighing on the minds of many after the Twins skidded to their sixth loss in seven games on Friday, a 10-3 defeat to the Los Angeles Angels.
This team isn’t hitting or pitching real well, and despite rallying to take a 3-2 lead over the Halos on Friday, the bullpen coughed up eight more runs, all earned.
Lewis Thorpe got the nod for the Twins. He allowed two runs over four innings and was removed after 60 pitches, which raises the question: Why? Twins manager Rocco Baldelli has a quick hook, and so far, the bullpen isn’t up to the challenge. After Thorpe was gone, Randy Dobnak got knocked around and is now 0-3 with an 11.88 ERA. As if I needed another reminder of this: don’t believe all you see in spring training.
Not everyone is pleased with Rocco these days. Michael Pineda allowed only two hits over seven innings on Thursday, but was still lifted after 88 pitches. Couldn’t he have have gone one more inning? That’s what everyone was asking after the bullpen coughed up three runs to the Boston Red Sox to tie the game. Fortunately, the Twins’ Max Kepler finally got a clutch hit and the team won in walk-off style, 4-3, on a bloop single.
Matt Shoemaker gets the ball on Saturday.
-The Twins are now 6-8 on the young season. Remember this Twins fans: Nobody cares if you have a winning record in April, it’s whether you have a winning record in September.
-Josh Donaldson is back in the lineup, but now Byron Buxton has been sidelined by a tight hamstring. When is that guy going to get truly healthy and play a full season of baseball?
-The Angels turned four double plays on Friday.
-Unwilling to use anymore relievers after the Angels increased their lead, Twins manager Baldelli had Willians Astudillo close out the game. La Tortuga pitched a scoreless inning.
-Donaldson, Kepler and Mitch Garver had six of the Twins’ 10 hits on Friday.