The Twins looked tired Friday night after their hard-fought series against the Los Angeles Dodgers, and for five innings it really showed as they remained hitless and struck out 12 times as a team.
That allowed the Los Angeles Angels to take a 3-0 lead that suddenly evaporated, courtesy of a pinch-hit RBI double from Alex Kirilloff that tied the game. Willi Castro then hit a first-pitch home run to give the Twins a 4-3 lead.
But once again reliever Griffin Jax was not up to the task at hand, and he hasn’t been his usually reliable self for some time, according to Twins TV play-by-play guy Dick Bremer, who said that Jax hasn’t pitched a clean inning since May 2.
Jax lasted all of two outs, allowing two runs on three hits and that was the game. Louie Varland gets the ball Saturday.
Extra innings …
-Who was his normal self? Starter Joe Ryan, who made another quality start but didn’t figure in the decision. He allowed three runs (two earned) with a walk and nine strikeouts over six innings.
-There has been some recent “controversy” over comments Joey Gallo has made about hitting in the leadoff position, a role he apparently doesn’t care for, although it’s hard to tell how serious he was about those comments and whether it was just said in good humor.
But if he was being serious, Gallo needs to take a hard look in the mirror and ask himself: What was I thinking? Gallo has so far found the kind of success with the Twins that was noticeably absent from his days with the Yankees. If he wants that to continue — and he has shown he can hit home runs at the top of the order — he needs to shut up and do whatever is necessary to help this team win.
-Yankees pitcher Domingo German has been suspended for 10 games after a foreign substance was found on his pitching hand during a recent Yankees/Blue Jays series. This is the same pitcher who was asked to remove that tacky substance from his hands against the Twins, but was still allowed to pitch even though he didn’t comply with the umpire’s request. The Twins lost that game, by the way. Your thoughts, Rocco Baldelli.
-Ex-Twins watch: Pitcher Jose Berrios, now with the Blue Jays, made a recent quality start in a loss to the Yankees. He allowed three runs over six-plus innings with eight strikeouts.
-Ex-Twins watch: Pitcher Kyle Gibson, now with the Baltimore Orioles, beat the Blue Jays Friday night. He allowed only a run over seven innings to improve to 5-3 on the season.
-Ex-Twins watch: Brent Rooker, now with the Oakland A’s, is being compared to Mark McGwire, according to MLB.com.
“The 28-year-old left fielder/DH, whom you probably had never heard of before the past few weeks, is hitting .295/.408/.605 with 11 home runs so far this season,” the story reads.