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Please pass on Yu Darvish Twins

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Article: Twelve's A Crowd: Twins Are Rolling In Relief

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MIN 5, MIL 4: Rosario Scores Go-Ahead Run on Balk, Polanco Collects 4 Hits

The Twins made their share of mistakes Monday night, but Eddie Rosario managed to force the Brewers into a blunder that ended up being the difference in the game. While on third base and no one holding him on, Rosario flustered the pitcher into committing a run-scoring balk that went down as the game-winning run.
Image courtesy of Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports
Win Expectancy (via Fangraphs)
Attached Image: WinEx87.png
Rosario’s run made the difference, but the other big stories of this game were Jorge Polanco breaking out of his slump and the bullpen delivering another great performance.

Polanco went 4-for-4 and hit a huge two-run double. It was his first multi-hit game since July 1 and just the second time all year he’s had more than two hits. Polanco had as many hits tonight as he did all last month. He’s opened August with a five-game hitting streak after going 4-for-51 (.078) in July. Paul Molitor has gone back to running Polanco out there at shortstop everyday again, and it appears to be paying off.

Ervin Santana went 6.0 innings, was only credited with two earned runs of the four he gave up and had six strikeouts. For the second straight night, the bullpen shined bright.

Trevor Hildenberger struck out the first two batters he faced before giving up a single to Ryan Braun. After Buddy Boshers recorded the last out of the seventh, it was Ryan Pressly who came in for the eighth. He walked the first man he faced on four pitches, but miraculously had a seven-pitch inning. His fifth pitch on the frame turned into a double play and he got the final out on a fly ball to end a two-pitch at bat.

Molitor turned to Matt Belisle again for the save, despite the fact that he entered the night with a 9.85 ERA, 2.10 WHIP and 1.045 OPS against when working on zero days rest. Belisle answered the call and got the job done. Here’s the bullpen’s line from the past two games: 7.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 5 K.

All’s well that ends well, but this was not a very pretty win. The Twins had a difficult time scratching across runs tonight, going 1-for-13 with runners in scoring position while leaving 11 men on base. They left runners on second and third in both the third and fourth innings, then left the bases loaded in the fifth. In the sixth, they got runners on first and second base with no outs. Those runners were stranded.

In the seventh, Rosario was at second with no outs after Milwaukee right fielder Domingo Santana appeared to lose his fly ball in the lights. With no outs, Paul Molitor had Buxton bunt him over to third. Rosario managed to induce the balk, but the Twins left two more runners on that inning.

Along with struggling to deliver timely hits, the Twins also committed three errors. With two outs in the third inning, Polanco made a fielding error on what should have been the inning-ending ground out. That was the only really bad error -- the only one that should have resulted in an out. The others were on misplays that resulted in a player taking an extra base.

That same third inning, Buxton mishandled a slow roller and turned a run-scoring single into a two-run hit. The next inning, Dozier was changed with a throwing error that allowed a runner to advance from second base to third. Luckily that runner was stranded. In the ninth, Buxton again misplayed a ball that allowed the runner to advance from first to second with two out. That was also originally scored an error, but was updated to a double after the conclusion of the game.

Postgame With Rosario

Twins W-L Record
Overall: 54-56 (.491)
Last 10: 5-5 (.500)
Last 20: 8-12 (.400)
Last 40: 18-22 (.450)
Last 80: 38-42 (.475)

Defensive Lineups
Here’s a look at the starting lineups from the past seven games:
Attached Image: Lineups87.png
Bullpen Usage
Here’s a quick look at the number of pitches thrown by the bullpen over the past five days:
Attached Image: Pen87.png
Looking Ahead
Tuesday: Twins (Adalberto Mejia) vs. Brewers (Matt Garza), 7:10 pm, CT

Old friend alert! After a couple of underwhelming and injury-riddled seasons, Garza is back to being an above average pitcher this year. He has a 3.68 ERA, 1.25 WHIP and hasn't given up more than two runs in five straight starts.

Mejia is having an encouraging rookie season, but he's going to need to start pitching deeper into games. In his 17 starts this year, he's thrown 100 pitches just three times and has gotten an out in the sixth inning in six of those starts.


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46 Comments

"Polanco had as many hits tonight as he did all last month."

 

Ouch. Glad he's turning it around.

    • glunn, hugelycat, Dozier's Glorious Hair and 1 other like this
Are they really going to run Belisle out there in the ninth?? I mean he's like ancient, why not play someone there that could be a closer of the future.
    • bighat likes this

 

"Polanco had as many hits tonight as he did all last month."

 

Ouch. Glad he's turning it around.

 

"He’s opened August with a five-game hitting streak after going 4-for-51 (.078) in July."

 

I mean.....that's almost unbelievable. 

 

 

"Belisle answered the call and got the job done."

 

The North remembers. Don't we?

    • glunn, Vanimal46 and CUtomorrownight like this

Are they really going to run Belisle out there in the ninth?? I mean he's like ancient, why not play someone there that could be a closer of the future.


My guess is they want the "vet" out there right now in the 9th. Also, if he shows he can close and we drop out of WC contention, we might get a few takers on him.
    • glunn, bizaff, Dozier's Glorious Hair and 1 other like this
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Taildragger8791
Aug 08 2017 05:56 AM

"He’s opened August with a five-game hitting streak after going 4-for-51 (.078) in July."
 
I mean.....that's almost unbelievable.


It's a little more believable when he's the second twins player this year with a streak that bad. Buxton's start to the year was equally as ugly.
    • gil4 and bighat like this

Rosario's really become a solid bat in the lineup. You gotta feel great for Polanco! Santana again with a nice quality start. Remember a few years ago when Kevin Correia led the team with 9 wins? Cool to see Santana and Berrios in double-digits.

 

Not a pretty win? At this point, many of us will take any win we can get. Hope they pull off the mini-sweep today, go Adalberto!

    • 70charger, SwainZag, bluechipper and 3 others like this
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Tom Froemming
Aug 08 2017 06:03 AM

Got a few more things to pass along ...

 

If you think the Twins have been bad with runners in scoring position you should probably go hug a Brewers fan. Here are their RISP numbers since the All-Star break:

 

Twins: .219 AVG, .647 OPS, 73 wRC+ (ranks 26th)

Brewers: .164 AVG, .537 OPS, 31 wRC+ (dead last)

 

The Twins have continued their trend of loading up the bases at the highest rate in the league since the break. They have 37 PAs with the bases juiced. Only two other teams have reached 30 PAs, and just 12 other teams have even had 20 PAs. 

 

Both the Royals and Angels lost last night, so the Twins jumped up to ninth place in the AL and are 2.5 games back of the Wild Card.

    • gil4, bluechipper, dbminn and 1 other like this
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Tommygun921
Aug 08 2017 06:30 AM
Still have no idea why the Brewers wouldn't at least have someone within 10 ft of 3rd there. Seemed like a pretty silly decision to shift that hard with a guy on 3rd in a tie game.
    • bluechipper, Hosken Bombo Disco, spinowner and 1 other like this

My guess is they want the "vet" out there right now in the 9th. Also, if he shows he can close and we drop out of WC contention, we might get a few takers on him.


I doubt there are any contenders out there who would have any interest at all in Belisle as closer. He might be a general pen addition for someone, though, likely in exchange for "cash considerations" (like Neal Cotts a couple years back).
    • blindeke and bighat like this

Is there a pitcher Molitor trusts enough that he would do what Counsell did with Hader last night, I think he would have blown though at least two pitchers in the 5th.

Photo
Carole Keller
Aug 08 2017 07:08 AM

Still have no idea why the Brewers wouldn't at least have someone within 10 ft of 3rd there. Seemed like a pretty silly decision to shift that hard with a guy on 3rd in a tie game.


Yeah, I wondered that, too. I guess he was more focused on getting the out, but still.
Photo
Old Twins Cap
Aug 08 2017 07:31 AM

Bunting Buxton with the winning run in scoring position?To get to Adrianza?

 

That's not just old school, that's dumb school.

 

And, because of Rosario, it worked!

Rosario creating that balk was a thing of beauty.  That shift has to be on the manager.  Their manager helped lose that game for them.  Rosario can make me cringe and make me smile.  One thing he is consistent on is his passion for the game.  I do love watching him.

    • luckylager, adorduan, bizaff and 6 others like this

Still don't understand why so many here were in a rush to trade Rosario when our clutch core hitters obviously are carrying the load and went 0-9 (Mauer and Dozier).  

    • adorduan likes this

 

Still don't understand why so many here were in a rush to trade Rosario when our clutch core hitters obviously are carrying the load and went 0-9 (Mauer and Dozier).  

 

because they have no pitching, corner OF are easier to find in FA, and Rosario might be able to get a legit SP back in return. Well, that was it for some people, not all.

Photo
Carole Keller
Aug 08 2017 08:35 AM

 

Still don't understand why so many here were in a rush to trade Rosario when our clutch core hitters obviously are carrying the load and went 0-9 (Mauer and Dozier).  

It wasn't so much for 'wanting to trade' Rosario as it was looking for players who might be more expendable in order to get a return for good SP. I've always liked Rosario and don't want him traded, but, if we can net good pitching, that's the way it goes.

 

But yeah ... he was certainly a gamer last night ... hitting in the tying run and scoring the winning run with his balk-inducing motions.

    • bighat likes this
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yarnivek1972
Aug 08 2017 08:36 AM

 

because they have no pitching, corner OF are easier to find in FA, and Rosario might be able to get a legit SP back in return. Well, that was it for some people, not all.

 

 

By that logic, why would a team trade for Rosario?  They can probably find equal productivity from a FA and most organizations have a slugger capable of playing a corner OFer in the upper minors.

 

Starting pitching is still the more valuable commodity.  IMO, no way does Rosario by himself fetch an established, controllable quality starting pitcher.

    • ken and Original Whizzinator like this
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Brock Beauchamp
Aug 08 2017 08:45 AM

 

Yeah, I wondered that, too. I guess he was more focused on getting the out, but still.

I think this is a good example why the truly advanced teams have begun moving away from shifting all day, every day.

 

By that logic, why would a team trade for Rosario?  They can probably find equal productivity from a FA and most organizations have a slugger capable of playing a corner OFer in the upper minors.

 

Starting pitching is still the more valuable commodity.  IMO, no way does Rosario by himself fetch an established, controllable quality starting pitcher.

 

who said by himself? who said MLB pitcher? 

Photo
Carole Keller
Aug 08 2017 09:02 AM

 

I think this is a good example why the truly advanced teams have begun moving away from shifting all day, every day.

Although, listening to Counsell talk about that balk after the game, he basically said they've done this a lot, shifting and with men on third, but that maybe he could have gone out and talked to the pitcher to make sure his 'twitchiness' wouldn't get the better of him, that the runner wasn't really going anywhere. I guess that makes sense ... but ... I'm not sure I'd want to do that with a runner on third, particularly with certain runners who would use their energy to induce such a thing. :)

    • USAFChief, Mike Sixel, adorduan and 4 others like this
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Willihammer
Aug 08 2017 09:26 AM
This is the double edged sword that is Eddie Rosario's aggressiveness. Love it. Even if he doesn't draw a balk, maybe he gets the pitcher to abandon his offspeed stuff for fear of the PB.

That said, all the pitcher had to do was wait for Eddie to run up the line then step off and run directly at him. Probably Eddie wins a foot race back to third but maybe his brain freezes long enough to tag him.

Although, listening to Counsell talk about that balk after the game, he basically said they've done this a lot, shifting and with men on third, but that maybe he could have gone out and talked to the pitcher to make sure his 'twitchiness' wouldn't get the better of him, that the runner wasn't really going anywhere. I guess that makes sense ... but ... I'm not sure I'd want to do that with a runner on third, particularly with certain runners who would use their energy to induce such a thing. :)


Yeah, I put this more on the pitcher than the shift, or even credit to Rosario.

He's not stealing home if the pitcher is in the stretch.

 

This is the double edged sword that is Eddie Rosario's aggressiveness. Love it. Even if he doesn't draw a balk, maybe he gets the pitcher to abandon his offspeed stuff for fear of the PB.

That said, all the pitcher had to do was wait for Eddie to run up the line then step off and run directly at him. Probably Eddie wins a foot race back to third but maybe his brain freezes long enough to tag him.

I thought it just as likely that Eddie could have just stolen home in the time it takes the pitcher to react, stop off the rubber and throw home. Am I right in thinking he couldn't just throw home from the rubber without some kind of pitching motion?  Either way, how can you possibly concentrate on the sign and the pitch when a guy is faking a dash for home and is already over halfway there?

 

If you think the Twins have been bad with runners in scoring position you should probably go hug a Brewers fan. Here are their RISP numbers since the All-Star break:

 

Twins: .219 AVG, .647 OPS, 73 wRC+ (ranks 26th)

Brewers: .164 AVG, .537 OPS, 31 wRC+ (dead last)

 

That was a killer for the Twins last year too, at .239 w/RISP (well, and their pitching).  They just need their pitching and hitting to line up for a little bit and extend this 2-game winning streak to get back near the top of the Wild card or division races.

    • Dantes929 likes this

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