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Article: MIN 6, TB 4: Cruz Bails Out Another Bunting Blunder

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 10:00 PM
Messages from the team’s marketing department are apparently being lost in translation on their way to the club’s manager. Instead of the...
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What was Tampa Bay Thinking

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 09:51 PM
When they waived CJ Cron? He hit 30 home runs with a .816 OPS in 2018.He wasn't making a lot of money int he grand scheme of things....
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Article: Luis Arráez: Hitting Machine

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 09:50 PM
Luis Arráez, the guy that knows how to hit a baseball.He is just 22 years old but already made his MLB debut more than a month ago, when...
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Game Thread: Twins vs. Tampa Bay 6/26/19 @ 7:10pm CST

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 09:48 PM
  Good afternoon to all of you wonderful Twins Daily Game Thread participants!  Beautiful day here in Minneapolis to watch a b...
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Juiced Baseball Update

Other Baseball Today, 09:44 PM
This should be a giant red flag that something isn't right with the baseballs.
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MIN 6, SEA 5: Comeback Victory Capped By Trevor May Save

The Twins were able to use a late inning push to improve to 44-21 and retake their lead as baseball's best. The Twins score three runs in the bottom of the eighth to take a one-run lead. Taylor Rogers was unavailable due to a stiff back, so it was Trevor May who was given the ninth tonight. He passed the test.
Image courtesy of © Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports
Box Score
Perez: 5.0 IP, 6 H, 4 ER, 3 BB, 7 K, 62.1% strikes (59 of 95 pitches)
Bullpen: 4.0 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 3 K

Home Runs: Schoop (12), Castro (8)
Multi-Hit Games: Polanco (3-for-3, 2 2B)

WPA of +0.1: Polanco .398, Gonzalez .190, Schoop .111
WPA of -0.1: Sano -.172, Perez -.205
Attached Image: Win611.png
(chart via FanGraphs)

Twins Pounce on Bullpen
See Twins fans, our bullpen isn’t the only one to blow leads late in the game. In fact, entering tonight, the Twins are tied for fifth fewest blown saves with only four. The Mariners, on the other hand, picked up their 12th blown save, which is tied for third-most in the league.

Though the Twins don’t have that many blown saves, that doesn’t mean our bullpen isn’t bad. That was shown tonight when Trevor May almost gave Twins’ Twitter another reason to talk about how not getting Craig Kimbrel was a mistake.

The ninth inning opened with a pair of singles, but May managed to protect the one-run lead. Rogers was unavailable due to a sore back.


The Twins were able to pick up their first lead of the game in the eighth inning with the first three batters getting on, which included back-to-back doubles to bring them within one, followed by a walk.

Austin Adams came in, no not the Twins’ reliever, but the reliever for the Mariners, and tied the game up on a wild pitch which scored Jorge Polanco. Two batters later Marwin Gonzalez gave the Twins the lead with his first hit of the game.

Leake Deals
Prior to that late comeback, it was a bit of a frustrating evening for the Twins. Mike Leake was able to hold them to only three runs through seven innings. He got a lot of help from the Twins being very aggressive in the later innings, but nonetheless, had a very solid outing. He had 16 at-bats where he threw four or fewer pitches, including 10 at-bats that were two pitches or fewer.
Leake gave up back-to-back home runs in the fourth, but settled in after that. Other than his two home runs, in his seven innings Leake gave up only four hits, zero runs, and struck out six.

Perez Continues to Struggle
This start by Martin Perez marks his third straight giving up more than two runs. Perez had a 7-2 record with a 3.72 ERA coming into this game, but it’s been rising for the past three outings and tonight didn’t help. Over the last three games, he had posted a 7.44 ERA and 2.15 WHIP.

Perez’s struggles started right away with his first-pitch strikes. In the first three innings he was only able to get five first pitch strikes out of 13 batters. He was able to keep his struggles irrelevant in the first 2 2/3 innings, but with a two-out rally in the third, things went downhill.

Perez was limited to just five innings in tonight’s game which makes it four straight starts where he has failed to go more than five innings. He was only able to throw a first pitch strike to 11 out of 24 batters he faced tonight. His ERA has risen a full run in his last four starts to bring it to 3.97, but thanks to a late inning push, he picked up a no-decision.

Record-Breaking Powerhouse
Every few games it feels like the Twins are breaking a new record whether it’s their own franchise record, or a MLB record. After their first home run of the game bringing them to 126 on the season, they had already set a new club record and MLB record. They passed their previous record of home runs before the All-Star game from 1964, with 24 games until the break, and set the MLB record for most home runs in their first 65 games of the season. They finished the night with 127 home runs.

Postgame With Baldelli


Bullpen Usage
Here’s a quick look at the number of pitches thrown by the bullpen over the past five days:
Attached Image: Pen611.png
Next Game
Wed vs. SEA, 7:10 pm CT (Berrios-Milone)

Last Game
MIN 12, DET 2: No Motown Blues for the Minnesota Twins

More from Twins Daily
Why Miguel Sano's Strikeouts Are Not a Problem
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Giving Opponents Ls in Fort Myers

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68 Comments

Happiness is having Garver and Cron on the bench last night and not seeing where I'd need to have them pinch hit.

    • Carole Keller, birdwatcher, diehardtwinsfan and 7 others like this
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BattleYourTailOff
Jun 12 2019 07:03 AM

Can you imagine being a Twins' player, waking up this morning, seeing you are 23 games above .500, 10 games up in the division, destroying HR records left and right and then realizing that Tommy Milone is pitching for the Mariners tonight?
 
That's gotta give an extra hop to your step.


I’m going to the game tonight. Hopefully get a chance for a few HR balls. I know Cruz hits him well anyway.
    • MN_ExPat likes this
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terrydactyls1947
Jun 12 2019 07:13 AM

Yesterday was Tuesday, June 11 and it was the 65th game of the year.The Twins are now 40%of the way through the season.Out of 59 years, the current team ranks 33rd on the all-time list of Twins' home runs in one season and are on a pace to hit 317 home runs this season..

    • Riverbrian likes this

The start from Perez wasn't great, but there is definitely hope there. He needs to attack the strike zone early in the count and pitch from ahead instead of constantly starting at bats with ball 1 and ball 2. That's fixable, I think.

 

May was OK. He got a gift strike out, but then two weak pop outs from good hitters. I seem to remember him having a good change up when he was a starter. He doesn't seem to use it much anymore. I think it would be an effective pitch for him as hitters have to gear up for his juiced up fastball.

 

Winning games 12-2 is fun, but I actually think the one run games are better for the team as it helps prepare them for the type of games they will face in the playoffs.

    • birdwatcher, pbrezeasap, brvama and 4 others like this

 

Can you imagine being a Twins' player, waking up this morning, seeing you are 23 games above .500, 10 games up in the division, destroying HR records left and right and then realizing that Tommy Milone is pitching for the Mariners tonight?

 

That's gotta give an extra hop to your step.

 Is it okay to hope for our third 8-homer game of the season? Or is that asking too much?

    • pbrezeasap, Riverbrian, 70charger and 2 others like this
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BattleYourTailOff
Jun 12 2019 07:52 AM

May was OK. He got a gift strike out, but then two weak pop outs from good hitters. I seem to remember him having a good change up when he was a starter. He doesn't seem to use it much anymore. I think it would be an effective pitch for him as hitters have to gear up for his juiced up fastball.


it’s a good thing he’s high velocity cuz he misses his location really badly on a lot of pitches. That popout by Seager to end the game was supposed to be outside & he put it middle-in happy zone.
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birdwatcher
Jun 12 2019 08:07 AM

 

Happiness is having Garver and Cron on the bench last night and not seeing where I'd need to have them pinch hit.

 

 

Yes, this is a remarkable thing! A dozen position players with a 1 WAR or better (a LOT better in most cases). 

 

It seems to be this team's year. Sit two guys down and watch their replacements be run producers.

    • diehardtwinsfan, Riverbrian and Original Whizzinator like this

it’s a good thing he’s high velocity cuz he misses his location really badly on a lot of pitches. That popout by Seager to end the game was supposed to be outside & he put it middle-in happy zone.

both Vogelbach and Seager got great swings off May.
    • BattleYourTailOff likes this

 

The Twins have't blown many saves because they haven't had very many save opportunities due to the large leads that they've built.  

I considered that but have two counterpoints.If the pen was as bad as folks here believe then the runs given up by the relievers would offset the large leads creating more save opportunities but instead as you have pointed out there are fewer save opportunities.Further, the Twins are also number three in save percentage which is a mostly independent stat from opportunities.None of those teams listed above crack the top 10. I really just want to point out that it is very rare for a fan base to be happy with their bullpen.I remember when Jesse Crain went 23 appearances without giving up a run and it seemed like no one noticed. He then gave up a home runand fans immediately went back to calling him Crain wreck. 

    • birdwatcher, Riverbrian, 70charger and 5 others like this
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RatherBeGolfing
Jun 12 2019 08:11 AM

 

 Is it okay to hope for our third 8-homer game of the season? Or is that asking too much?

 

It has been a few weeks so we are due

    • Riverbrian, 70charger and Original Whizzinator like this

I did...there was acknowledgment that the bases should have been loaded with nobody out...but not the usual outrage that we get when the call goes the other way. I’m firmly in the ‘let the umpires call the pitches, it’s not a big problem’ camp. But that was one of the worse calls on an extremely high leverage pitch that we’ll see all year.


I'm firmly with you on hating the idea of a machine calling balls and strikes.

Terrible idea that remove some of the beauty of the game, while probably not improving the strike zone at all.
    • birdwatcher, pbrezeasap, PseudoSABR and 2 others like this

I thought this umpire was really inconsistent on calling low pitches around the corners. It probably evened out over the course of the game (Seattle appeared to benefit early, Twins benefited late) but it makes for a frustrating game and it's hard on the pitchers and catchers.

 

Polanco was terrific again. 2 leg doubles? Does he have a bet on with Buxton or something?

 

I'm glad May got the 9th, regardless of Rogers status. He needs to throw late innings and the teams needs to know if he's a guy who can close out a game. A bit wobbly last night, but the stuff is there.

 

I feel less concern over this team facing a 2-3 run deficit than any Twins team in a very long time. Very hard to keep this offense down all game.

    • Dman, MN_ExPat and Original Whizzinator like this
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Don Walcott
Jun 12 2019 08:19 AM

 

Two of his three walks were to Encarnacion and close to intentional.

He got the following batter Vogelbach to strike out the first two at bats. It is the third at bat against Vogelbach that was bothersome. He stayed on the outside every pitch of that at bat. He needed to trust his stuff and come in hard inside. Eventually Vogelbach three his bat out there and flared one to left for an RBI.

I am not worried about the walks. I do wonder if he is questioning his stuff as he pitches to Encarnacion and even coming inside against Vogelbach.

I think this is exactly right. In the first AB, it was clear Perez didn't want to pitch to EE. In the second AB, it was clear Perez should not be pitching to EE. In the third AB, they shouldn't have forced Perez to pitch to EE. Rather, they should have saved his pitches for Vogelbach, who didn't look like he could hit Perez, until he reached out and blooped one.

 

The way he looks right now, I'm not sure why we'd ever pitch to EE for the rest of this series. Doesn't look like anyone else on that team is going to hurt us. Can't believe the Indians traded him. And I'm worried that he's auditioning for the Astros right now.

    • USAFChief, AlwaysinModeration, Dman and 1 other like this

The Twins have't blown many saves because they haven't had very many save opportunities due to the large leads that they've built.


True. But also the pen has been better than expected.
    • MN_ExPat likes this

I think this is exactly right. In the first AB, it was clear Perez didn't want to pitch to EE. In the second AB, it was clear Perez should not be pitching to EE. In the third AB, they shouldn't have forced Perez to pitch to EE. Rather, they should have saved his pitches for Vogelbach, who didn't look like he could hit Perez, until he reached out and blooped one.

The way he looks right now, I'm not sure why we'd ever pitch to EE for the rest of this series. Doesn't look like anyone else on that team is going to hurt us. Can't believe the Indians traded him. And I'm worried that he's auditioning for the Astros right now.

he's certainly auditioning for someone.
    • Don Walcott likes this
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LA VIkes Fan
Jun 12 2019 09:07 AM

Great game, but Perez is starting to become a problem. He doesn't give us enough innings, even for a 5th starter. The rotation has been pretty solid, BUT..

 

(1) We have two guys who go 5 innings at best and rarely more in Pineda and Perez,

(2) Two guys who rarely go beyond 6 innings in Odorizzi and Gibson, and

(3) Only ONE starter who you feel like is likely to/might go 7 innings or more in Berrios.

 

My thinking is that while yes, we need another BP arm or two, another starter who can at least consistently go 6 plus innings might help the BP almost as much by limiting their innings. Is that Smeltzer? Who knows? Another 5 innings or less start or two by Pineda or Perez and I would seriously think about giving Smeltzer a 2-3 game run to see if he's as good as he looked last time. And, I'd do it before the trade deadline because it might impact some thinking. 

    • Original Whizzinator likes this
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stringer bell
Jun 12 2019 09:27 AM

The league has adjusted to Pérez' adjustments. He'll have to adjust a bit more, but he's got a live arm and enough stuff to be a successful starting pitcher. Regarding Encarnación, he is on most everything right now. I would guess right now the word in the Twins' clubhouse is "don't let that guy beat you".

 

May is walking a tightrope on the mound, but the fastball up is hard to square up. If he could drop an occasional curve in there, and get ahead in counts, he could be really effective. Who sits tonight vs. a soft-tossing lefty? About the only sure thing is that Garver replaces Castro. 

    • DocBauer likes this

 

Great game, but Perez is starting to become a problem. He doesn't give us enough innings, even for a 5th starter. The rotation has been pretty solid, BUT..

 

(1) We have two guys who go 5 innings at best and rarely more in Pineda and Perez,

(2) Two guys who rarely go beyond 6 innings in Odorizzi and Gibson, and

(3) Only ONE starter who you feel like is likely to/might go 7 innings or more in Berrios.

 

My thinking is that while yes, we need another BP arm or two, another starter who can at least consistently go 6 plus innings might help the BP almost as much by limiting their innings. Is that Smeltzer? Who knows? Another 5 innings or less start or two by Pineda or Perez and I would seriously think about giving Smeltzer a 2-3 game run to see if he's as good as he looked last time. And, I'd do it before the trade deadline because it might impact some thinking. 

The Twins are actually 2nd in the AL in innings pitched per start, just a tiny, tiny sliver behind Houston -- 5.77 vs 5.71. AL average is only 5.15.

 

This is 2019 baseball.

    • Brock Beauchamp, USAFChief, Han Joelo and 9 others like this
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BattleYourTailOff
Jun 12 2019 09:40 AM

I considered that but have two counterpoints. If the pen was as bad as folks here believe then the runs given up by the relievers would offset the large leads creating more save opportunities but instead as you have pointed out there are fewer save opportunities. Further, the Twins are also number three in save percentage which is a mostly independent stat from opportunities. None of those teams listed above crack the top 10. I really just want to point out that it is very rare for a fan base to be happy with their bullpen. I remember when Jesse Crain went 23 appearances without giving up a run and it seemed like no one noticed. He then gave up a home run and fans immediately went back to calling him Crain wreck.

Hahaha. Crain Wreck was a great nickname. You’re right the bullpen does get that NFL kicker treatment from fans but we just remember bullpen failures past in the playoffs and would love to avoid that.
    • Dantes929 likes this

 

Great game, but Perez is starting to become a problem. He doesn't give us enough innings, even for a 5th starter. The rotation has been pretty solid, BUT..

 

(1) We have two guys who go 5 innings at best and rarely more in Pineda and Perez,

(2) Two guys who rarely go beyond 6 innings in Odorizzi and Gibson, and

(3) Only ONE starter who you feel like is likely to/might go 7 innings or more in Berrios.

 

My thinking is that while yes, we need another BP arm or two, another starter who can at least consistently go 6 plus innings might help the BP almost as much by limiting their innings. Is that Smeltzer? Who knows? Another 5 innings or less start or two by Pineda or Perez and I would seriously think about giving Smeltzer a 2-3 game run to see if he's as good as he looked last time. And, I'd do it before the trade deadline because it might impact some thinking. 

 

This is by management decision. Baldelli has a very hard 100 pitch max rule, regardless of whether or not the pitcher is getting good results.

 

Yes this puts more pressure on the pen, and yes it's been surprising to all of us that no moves have been made. If the Twins wait until the deadline, the interesting arms will all be gone to whoever the Twins would be facing in the postseason... and there are no waiver wire trades this year.

    • LA VIkes Fan, Carlos Figueroa and BattleYourTailOff like this

I would like to point out that the strikeout pitch to Encarnacion (whatever his name is...the chicken wing guy) was framed nicely while bringing it back into the zone for the umpire.

    • birdwatcher and MN_ExPat like this
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LA VIkes Fan
Jun 12 2019 10:12 AM

 

The Twins are actually 2nd in the AL in innings pitched per start, just a tiny, tiny sliver behind Houston -- 5.77 vs 5.71. AL average is only 5.15.

 

This is 2019 baseball.

You're probably right about that although it's a statistic that can be impacted by short starts or the use of an opener where your starter only goes and inning or two. We've been fortunate in that we haven't had a lot of short stats and haven't used any (?) openers. As another poster pointed out, the Twins are also impacted by what appears to be a pretty hard 100-105 pitch limit that Baldelli uses. 

 

This all points out to me that (1) we have to have an 8 man BP if we're going to use this system (means no Arreaz, Astudillo or Cave), and that(2) we either need 2 BP arms by the deadline or 1 BP and 1 quality starter. Absent that, this BP will be running on fumes by mid to late August. Also, God help us if we lose Berrios or Rogers for any extended period. 

 

Hahaha. Crain Wreck was a great nickname. You’re right the bullpen does get that NFL kicker treatment from fans but we just remember bullpen failures past in the playoffs and would love to avoid that.

The failures I remember in the playoffs were from the #2 reliever in the game at the time. 

This is by management decision. Baldelli has a very hard 100 pitch max rule, regardless of whether or not the pitcher is getting good results.
 
Yes this puts more pressure on the pen, and yes it's been surprising to all of us that no moves have been made. If the Twins wait until the deadline, the interesting arms will all be gone to whoever the Twins would be facing in the postseason... and there are no waiver wire trades this year.


So you’re saying... Go ugly early, because if you go ugly late, all the good ugly ones are gone??
    • USAFChief and Riverbrian like this
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AlwaysinModeration
Jun 12 2019 11:30 AM
I, personally, am glad that EE is not on Cleveland any more. And also that the Twins beat the Mariners even despite giving up a 3-run bomb to him. Hope they can contain him today and tomorrow at least a bit.

I think Perez is alright. Certainly plenty good for a fifth starter for now.

May came in with the smallest of margins, and worked out of a (self-induced) jam. I’d chalk that up as a good outing.
    • Dantes929 and Original Whizzinator like this

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