HOU 11, MIN 0: Completely Dominated
Image courtesy of © Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY SportsBox Score
Pineda: 5.0 IP, 9 H, 5 ER, 1 BB, 2 K, 65.3% strikes (64 of 98 pitches)
Home Runs: None
Multi-Hit Games: Kepler (2-for-3, 2B, BB)
WPA of +0.1: None
WPA of -0.1: Cruz -.127, Pineda -.164
(chart via FanGraphs)
This game actually got off to a very encouraging start for the Twins. After Michael Pineda pitched a 1-2-3 top of the first inning, Gerrit Cole walked the first two batters he faced and fell behind Nelson Cruz 2-0.
That concluded the positive portion of the evening for Minnesota. Cole battled back and induced a double play, though to be fair that pitch was absolutely obliterated. The Twins didn’t get another base runner until the fifth inning and didn’t have a hit until the sixth. By that time, Houston had already busted open a 7-0 lead.
In the grand scheme of things, this is just one loss to a good team. But if Pineda can’t be a dependable piece in the rotation, well that would be something to fret about. After giving up just five earned runs on 13 hits over his first 15 innings of the season, Pineda has now surrendered 15 earned runs on 24 hits in 14 innings since. Not good.
To be fair, this was a 1-0 game entering the fifth inning, so it’s not like Pineda was completely overmatched from the start. Outside of those rough first couple batters from Cole, however, Twins hitters were most definitely overmatched. Cole was a beast tonight, and is up to 65 strikeouts in 43 1/3 innings this year. Just silly.
Oh, and the bullpen was bad too. Adalberto Mejia looks completely lost. He walked three of the five batters he faced and threw just 10 of his 27 pitches for strikes. The Twins also played their worst game in the field all season. Just a dreadful all-around performance, really.
Positives? Well, Max Kepler got two more hits. Fernando Romero looked pretty nasty in a scoreless ninth. He didn’t seem to have much command, but his stuff was moving all over the place. Let’s see, one more positive … uh … at least there weren’t many people who had to suffer through the whole thing?
Here’s a quick look at the number of pitches thrown by the bullpen over the past five days:
Next Three Games
Wed vs. HOU, 7:10 pm CT (Perez-McHugh)
Thu vs. HOU, 12:10 pm CT (Berrios-Peacock)
Fri at NYY, 6:05 pm CT (Gibson-TBD)
MIN 1, HOU 0: Let’s Go Crazy
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