Notebook: Long Ball Powers Twins to Win in Port Charlotte
Image courtesy of © Jonathan Dyer-USA TODAY SportsThe Twins continued their undefeated Spring Training campaign on the road today in Port Charlotte. They defeated the Tampa Bay Rays 6-5 in six innings.
Twins 6, Tampa Bay 5 (6 innings)
Standout pitcher: Lewis Thorpe (2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 HBP, 2 K)
Standout hitter: Brent Rooker (1-for-2 with a solo HR and Sac Fly)
A stronger, harder throwing, Lewis Thorpe got the start for the Twins today. His performance did nothing to slow down the “Hype Train”. Unlike in the Twins game yesterday at Hammond Stadium, the Rays facility was not equipped with Statcast so fans were unable to reference any of the data. However, it was noted from the Rays radio broadcast that Thorpe was hitting 93 mph.
After an adventurous first inning that included a scary moment when Thorpe hit Joey Wendle in the helmet (Wendle was OK), Thorpe settled down and had a 1-2-3 second. He struck out Yoshi Tsutsugo and Taylor Walls.
On the other side of the hill for the Rays was Tyler Glasnow and his 100 mph fastball. Glasnow threw 35 pitches and didn’t make it out of the second inning. While working on a new slider grip, Glasnow struck out Cave, Larnach, and Garlick but had three walks. He allowed two runs.
One was a home run to Brent Rooker.
The other was this very impressive at-bat by Luis Arraez which resulted in a bases loaded walk, leading to a 2-0 Twins lead.
For more detail, be sure to check out John’s Report From the Fort feature on today’s game.
Other Notable Efforts:
Some other notable performances by the Twins today included:
Kyle Garlick went 1-for-3 with a go-ahead two run homer. As a right handed hitting corner OF, could him and Rooker be competing for a spot on the roster? He had a 1.057 OPS in 304 PA’s in 2019 at AAA.
Luke Farrell threw one inning. He struck out the side. Speaking of Luke Farrell, he would like everyone to know he didn’t give up a HR to Buxton in live batting practice last week
He went 0-for-1 today with a BB, but it should be noted that Travis Blakenhorn started at first base. According to Baseball Reference, Blakenhorn has only played 15 innings at 1B in his minor league career. That was in 2015. Clearly, the Twins are trying out some things this Spring. Blakenhorn figures to be in a battle for the second utilityman spot on the Twins roster. Other names in competition include Nick Gordon, Willians Astudillo, JT Riddle, Tzu-Wei Lin, and Andrew Romine. Something to monitor ...
Sire of Fort Myers Update!
If you’re not following the most coveted award this side of the Mississippi, you’re missing out! More details, here.
Speaking of Andrew Romine, he helped his case today in his quest for the #SireOfFortMyers crown. He started at SS and went 2-for-3 at the plate.
I couldn’t write this headline without laughing a bit since it’s literally the second game of Spring Training but, another projected piece of the Twins bullpen struggled today.
Shaun Anderson made his Spring debut and it wasn’t pretty (1 IP, 2 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 1 K). He joins Tyler Duffey and Cody Stashak, who pitched yesterday, in tough starts.
This means very little, if anything at all. In fact, it’s already been pointed out that Shaun Anderson is working on a splitter. It’s hard to tell without Statcast data which pitches were thrown today, but assuming this was part of his mix. I wouldn’t be too worried because, you know, these games don’t matter.
New Twins Beat Reporter!
The Star Tribune announced LaVelle E. Neal’s replacement on the beat today. Megan Ryan will be covering the Twins this season and you can follow her here!
One less suitor for Jake Odorizzi?
Still a free agent, Jake Odorizzi has been linked to several teams this offseason. The Phillies were one of them and it appears they are “holding off” on spending anymore. The Blue Jays and Angels have also shown interest. We’re all curious to see where he ends up.
Eddie Rosario in a Cleveland Uniform is Weird
Eddie Rosario made his Spring debut today against the Royals. He batted 3rd and went 1-for-3 with a single. Yeah, it’s going to take me a while to get used to seeing this too.
That is it from today’s edition of the offseason Notebook. Make sure you are following Twins Daily on Twitter all Spring Training long for exclusive look-in’s and footage of the Twins in Florida.
Tomorrow: Twins at Braves at 12:05 pm CST
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