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Front Page: The Future Value of Luis Arraez

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 02:15 AM
Major League Baseball has rookies every season that are deemed as the next wave of stars. However, this rarely comes to fruition as plent...
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Front Page: Mission Accomplished: An Elite Twins Bullpen

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 12:14 AM
As the month of July came to an end, Minnesota Twins fans watched with anticipation hoping that their club was going to make the necessar...
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Game Thread "Patience" Twins vs White Sox 6pm cdt...

Minnesota Twins Talk Yesterday, 10:59 PM
All rise!The right honourable Umpire is entering the stadium (do the get walkup music? if not, what should they have?)On the charge of wa...
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Magic Number Thread

Minnesota Twins Talk Yesterday, 10:59 PM
Why no magic number thread?     Why can't I post pictures?      BYTO was fun.    
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Front Page: What Should the Twins Postseason Batting Orde...

Minnesota Twins Talk Yesterday, 10:47 PM
The Twins lineup for Monday’s 5-3 win over the White Sox looked like a potential starting nine for the postseason, with the exception of...
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Twins Game Recap (9/8) Clevinger Shuts Down the Scuffling Twins Offense

The Twins sent out one of the strangest lineups we've seen all season and eventually even Ian Miller and Ryan LaMarre worked their way in there for this Twins loss. The opener strategy was deployed again headlined by Randy Dobnak and Devin Smeltzer, but it did not go as well this second time around. The Twins lost this game and series to the Indians.
Image courtesy of FanGraphs
Box Score
Dobnak: 2.0 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 1 K, 67% strikes (22 of 33 pitches)
Bullpen: 7.0 IP, 8 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 2 K

Home Runs: None
Multi-Hit Games: None

Top 3 WPA: LaMonte Wade jr. (0.13), Ryne Harper (0.03), Fernando Romero (0.02)
Bottom 3 WPA: Cron (-0.10), Dobnak (-0.10), Polanco (-0.09)

Clevinger dominates against strange Twins lineup

The Twins have been hit with the injury bug a frustrating amount of times this season, and that was on full display today. By the second inning, only three Twins players in the lineup were in the lineup on Opening Day. The Twins did what was expected with this lineup against the elite Mike Clevinger by getting just four hits over 6 1/3 innings.

Max Kepler left the game after a first inning at-bat that had him feeling some upper chest pain, and Ian Miller got his first career at-bat. He struck out and was eventually replaced by Twins legend Ryan LaMarre. Through seven innings no Twin had more than one hit and a bases-loaded opportunity went to waste.

The Twins did get a bit of offense off of Clevinger with this Mitch Garver home run.


Twins opener not as successful the second time around

The Twins broke out their first real opener last week against Boston and saw the Dobnak/Lewis Thorpe combination lead to a win, but today did not go as well. Dobnak started again but gave up two runs, and then his replacement was Smeltzer, who also gave up two runs.

With Michael Pineda suspended, Kyle Gibson on the IL, Jose Berrios struggling, and Martin Perez being a huge question mark, the opener strategy will likely be utilized by the Twins down the stretch. It may even be used in the playoffs so hopefully they can get a solid rotation or combination going to see what works.

Indians bullpen finishes off the game

The Twins were finally able to get Clevinger out of the game, and they were threatening to get back in to it. After loading the bases with one out, C.J. Cron and Mitch Garver both struck out swinging. As a team, the Twins are hitting just .215/.221/.318 with the bases loaded. Also, the Twins lead all of baseball in wOBA, but they are somehow last in wOBA with the bases loaded. Baseball is weird.

The eighth inning was easy for the Indians as Oliver Perez set down the side 1-2-3, and then Brad Hand and his 6.00 second-half ERA came in to finish it off. Luis Arraez hit a ball 98 MPH with a .400 xBA but Greg Allen made a great catch to rob him of a double. Adrianza flew out, Wade was hit by a pitch, Schoop walked, and 2018 Twins legend Ryan LaMarre stepped to the plate with a chance to tie the game ... He struck out.

Twins fall to 5.5 games over the Indians

The Twins basically just had to go 3-3 over these last six against the Red Sox and Indians and they did exactly that. Now moving on to six more tough games against Washington and Cleveland, the Twins should just go 3-3 again to secure the division. What is your panic level? I mean it shouldn’t be high except for the absurd amount of injuries, but let me know in the comments and I’ll discuss with you. Twins lose the series two games to one against the division rival Indians.

Postgame with Baldelli


Bullpen Usage Spreadsheet
Click here for a review of the number of pitches thrown by each member of the bullpen over the past five days.

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25 Comments

There is virtually no doubt the Twins will be in the playoffs. No stress level there. But simply out of abject curiousity, why would Sano not hit in an attempt to prolong the game? Was he hurt?
    • brvama, Danchat and 3balls2strikes like this

"Now moving on to six more tough games against Washington and Cleveland, the Twins should just go 3-3 again to secure the division."Yes, they should do that but why do you think they will. If the Twins go 3-3 and at least one of those wins is against the Indians then I am with you.

    • Dman and bighat like this

Twins are missing Mauer more than ever. With a collection of Schoop/Cron type of players Twins are destined to break the HR record. Unfortunately the ultimate goal of baseball is to win the World Series. I think in the offseason Twins need to get a few quality starting pitchers and bullpen arms along with couple CLUTCH hitters who often produce under pressure.

    • PDX Twin and Jeff_M like this

I think Arraez and Polanco should bat 1st and 2nd. Kepler 3rd. Garver 4th. Rosario 5th. I don't understand why those power hitters are hitting 1st and 2nd in the lineup.

    • hybridbear, Platoon, David HK and 1 other like this
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yarnivek1972
Sep 08 2019 04:53 PM

Twins are missing Mauer more than ever. With a collection of Schoop/Cron type of players Twins are destined to break the HR record. Unfortunately the ultimate goal of baseball is to win the World Series. I think in the offseason Twins need to get a few quality starting pitchers and bullpen arms along with couple CLUTCH hitters who often produce under pressure.


Joe Mauer had a .641 career postseason OPS. Almost all of that was before he developed his concussion issues.
    • birdwatcher and Danchat like this

Forgive me for feeling negatively about this loss. But if you take away Mitch Garver's big home run yesterday, this team is averaging 2 runs per game over the past week. How they got away with winning 3-of-6 against Boston and Cleveland is beyond me. The Twins clearly can't compete head-to-head with Cleveland at this time and I wouldn't be shocked to see them swept next weekend. And with a hot Washington team scrapping for their playoff lives, the Twins are looking at a daunting week ahead.

 

The offense looks as dismal and absent as it has all year, tank looks like its running on empty, with no help in sight.

    • Dman, hybridbear, David HK and 1 other like this
It would have been nice if Lamarre had not been rung up with his bat on his shoulder.
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yarnivek1972
Sep 08 2019 05:32 PM
The help in sight is Nelson Cruz. Of course, his impact may be negligible in Washington. Would it be worth it to “start” him in the OF, let him hit in the first and then lift him for Miller or LaMarre right away? Obviously, the downside is having a terrible hitter in the 3 hole for most of the game. They have just barely enough bodies that they could pinch hit a couple times, but the choices aren’t real strong either at present.

FWIW, Cruz has 10 HR in the first inning this year, double any other inning. His biggest impact might be right away. Why wait for a “key” spot that may never happen?

The help in sight is Nelson Cruz. Of course, his impact may be negligible in Washington.


We're at home vs Washington, with the DH this week.

Unless you are looking head to a possible World Series matchup! :)
    • ashbury, IndianaTwin, David HK and 1 other like this

With people busing injuris, the Twins need to make hard decisions on who WILL be available for the playoffs. Is Gonzales healing? Is Dyson still a possibility? Can Buxton bat? Will Kepler be an issue? Almsot need to put Gordon on the callup, and then 60-day him and bring in Kirilloff, fresh off the playoffs with the Wahoos. 

 

Gald the Twins got some inning work for a bunch of people sitting in the pen. I expected what happened to Dobnak and Smetzler to happen anyways. At this point, I would let Smeltzer start and get 3-4 innings, then bring in others. Dobnak should stay a one-inning opener. Where is Kohl Stewart? And Bristar Graterol should be in this rotation mix for 3-4 innings. Those five names should be the focus of five more rotation rounds for the remainder of the season.

 

If Kepler is out, then refocus the ineup. Arraez should start because he takes pitchers. LaMonte Wade is also showing discipline at the plate. Let him bat second, Polanco third. If Cruz remains out, make sure you get Astulido in there somewhere for every single game. Heck, with his bat these days, make Garver the cleanup hitter after Arraez, Wade, Polanco.

 

Going to be an interesting end of the season. Why aren't the Twins winning bigtime at home, hitting homer galore at Target Field? Will the lowly White Sox, Tigers and Royals be spoilers and play hard because they have nothing to lose?

    • bighat, rkevin and Jeff_M like this
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Tom Froemming
Sep 08 2019 07:25 PM

I liked what I saw from a few of the pitchers the Twins are going to need to step up in the wake of the Pineda suspension. Shared some highlight clips early on in today's episode.

 

 

    • h2oface, rkevin and VivaBomboRivera! like this

I know we have a 5.5 game lead but with Pineda suspension and the tough 6 game stretch ahead I am feeling a bit negative about our chances right now.I just hope Cleveland has as much trouble winning games as I think we will.They have the tougher schedule but they still have very good starting pitching so hard to say how things will play out.Hoping the good guys can find a way push through the end of the season and keep winning games.

    • jbissell and bighat like this

 

I know we have a 5.5 game lead but with Pineda suspension and the tough 6 game stretch ahead I am feeling a bit negative about our chances right now.I just hope Cleveland has as much trouble winning games as I think we will.They have the tougher schedule but they still have very good starting pitching so hard to say how things will play out.Hoping the good guys can find a way push through the end of the season and keep winning games.

Let's not forget that the final 10 games of the season are going to be against the 2 worst teams in baseball. The division is in hand, I'm just worried that they're not going to be capable of winning a playoff series.

    • howieramone2, VivaBomboRivera! and SoDakTwinsFan4 like this

 

Forgive me for feeling negatively about this loss. But if you take away Mitch Garver's big home run yesterday, this team is averaging 2 runs per game over the past week. How they got away with winning 3-of-6 against Boston and Cleveland is beyond me. The Twins clearly can't compete head-to-head with Cleveland at this time and I wouldn't be shocked to see them swept next weekend. And with a hot Washington team scrapping for their playoff lives, the Twins are looking at a daunting week ahead.

 

The offense looks as dismal and absent as it has all year, tank looks like its running on empty, with no help in sight.i

I'll be happy if they still have a 3.5 game lead a week from now. But honestly, I'm finding it hard to even worry about. Making the play-offs doesn't mean much if there's a 75% chance we're going to get swept. 

    • jbissell likes this

 

Let's not forget that the final 10 games of the season are going to be against the 2 worst teams in baseball. The division is in hand, I'm just worried that they're not going to be capable of winning a playoff series.

The division is not in hand. Cleveland could easily gain 3 or 4 games on us in the next 7 days. 

    • David HK and bighat like this

A division crown is very close but definitely not a sure thing with the latest round of news about Pineda, Buxton and Kepler and with several other regulars ailing. Just don't know what to think. So close but yet so far...sigh.

    • birdwatcher likes this

Well, once again, Cleveland defeated Rochester, and Clevinger pitched a gem, just as ace-type belly-itchers are supposed to do in a pennant crunch.

 

But holy heck, I'm wondering if Clevinger and Hunter Wood and their scraggly mullets each live in vans down by the river, or if they share just one? 

 

Van

 

    • bighat and rkevin like this
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terrydactyls1947
Sep 08 2019 11:36 PM

Yesterday was Sunday, September 8. It was the 143rd game of the year putting the Twins 88% of the way through the season. The Twins hit 1 home run upping their MLB record-breaking season total to 275 home runs.

 

 

Yesterday was Sunday, September 8. It was the 143rd game of the year putting the Twins 88% of the way through the season. The Twins hit 1 home run upping their MLB record-breaking season total to 275 home runs.

Yankees hit 3 home runs yesterday, in their 144th game -- now up to 268...

    • h2oface likes this
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SoDakTwinsFan4
Sep 09 2019 02:27 AM

I think Arraez and Polanco should bat 1st and 2nd. Kepler 3rd. Garver 4th. Rosario 5th. I don't understand why those power hitters are hitting 1st and 2nd in the lineup.



I agree 100%. I've never liked Kepler in the lead off spot. He swings at the first pitch almost every time! If I'm the Twins hitters I want my lead off man to make the pitcher show me what he's got. He's a great player, and I'd like him anywhere but the lead off spot.
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AlwaysinModeration
Sep 09 2019 03:09 AM
If there was ever a good day for a day off, this is it.
    • Dman, howieramone2, bighat and 1 other like this

 

Let's not forget that the final 10 games of the season are going to be against the 2 worst teams in baseball. The division is in hand, I'm just worried that they're not going to be capable of winning a playoff series.

 

You keep saying this like wins against KC and Detroit are automatic.

Personally, I am gonna sit back and enjoy Twins baseball the next few weeks.Will they be playing in October?We will see how it goes the next couple three weeks.

 

When I finished reading the paper this morning and learned of the extent of injuries to Buxton, Kepler, Sano, etc., etc., nothing is certain.

 

Whether it is October 1st or following the first playoff series, gonna look back and smile when thinking of perhaps the most enjoyable Twins season I have ever seen.Then on to 2020!!!

    • Dman, howieramone2, bighat and 2 others like this
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SpicyGarvSauce
Sep 09 2019 09:12 AM

Clevinger is a stud. Can the Twins trade for him?

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twinbythebay
Sep 09 2019 09:34 AM

 

Forgive me for feeling negatively about this loss. But if you take away Mitch Garver's big home run yesterday, this team is averaging 2 runs per game over the past week. How they got away with winning 3-of-6 against Boston and Cleveland is beyond me. The Twins clearly can't compete head-to-head with Cleveland at this time and I wouldn't be shocked to see them swept next weekend. And with a hot Washington team scrapping for their playoff lives, the Twins are looking at a daunting week ahead.

 

The offense looks as dismal and absent as it has all year, tank looks like its running on empty, with no help in sight.

 

Judging by the one win and two close losses this weekend, clearly they CAN and ARE competing head-to-head vs. Cleveland.

    • AceWrigley likes this

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