CWS 4, MIN 3: Twins Bullpen Blows Lead
Image courtesy of Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY SportsWin Expectancy (via Fangraphs)
Top 3 Twins per WPA: Santana .220 | Polanco .202 | Mauer .089
Despite the Twins hectic schedule with all the double headers, Rogers actually entered the night rested. Er, maybe make that rusty. Rogers had only pitched twice in the previous 11 days and did not look his best Wednesday. The White Sox hit two pitches that got way too much of the plate for back-to-back doubles, tying the game at 3-3. Rogers managed to complete the inning thanks to a double play.
Hildenberger came out for the ninth in hopes of extending the game into extra innings. He gave up a leadoff single, was given an out via a sacrifice bunt and intentionally walked the next batter to set up a double play. Instead, Tim Anderson delivered a walk-off single. Eddie Rosario appeared to have a good chance to throw out the runner at home, but he misfired. That seems like a moment Rosie lives for, so I’m sure he’s kicking himself for not being able to put that throw on target.
It was a shame too, because Ervin Santana turned in a great start. He held the White Sox to two runs (one earned) on three hits and a walk over while striking out eight over 7.0 innings. Ervin gets a lot of love for those five complete games he’s pitched this year, but he’s also turned in another six starts in which he’s gone at least 7.0 innings.
The Twins offense really struggled against James Shields, who entered the game with a 5.72 ERA. They managed just three hits, two of them coming from Jorge Polanco, who homered for the fourth-straight game. Prior to this crazy hot streak, Polanco had just seven career home runs in 172 career games.
Max Kepler returned to the lineup after missing a couple games with an illness. He was 0-for-3 but drew a walk and stole his fourth base of the season. While the Twins got one back, they unfortunately may have lost another, as Castro was forced to leave this game with concussion-like symptoms.
Postgame With Molitor
Twins W-L Record
Last 10: 6-4
Last 20: 14-6
Last 40: 20-20
Last 80: 39-41
AL Central Standings
Minnesota 65-61 (-4.5)
Kansas City 63-61 (-5.5)*
AL Wild Card Standings
WC1: Yankees 68-57 (+3.5)
WC2: Minnesota 65-61, Angels 65-61
Kansas City 63-61 (-1.0)*
Seattle 65-63 (-1.0)
*Wednesday game still in progress.
Here’s a quick look at the number of pitches thrown by the bullpen over the past five days:
THU: Twins (Jose Berrios) at White Sox (Derek Holland), 7:10 pm CT
FRI: Twins (Bartolo Colon) at Toronto (J.A. Happ), 6:10 pm CT
SAT: Twins (Gee) at Toronto (TBD), 12:07 pm CT
Question of the Day
Which member of the Twins bullpen to you trust the most at the moment?
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