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Trevor May Tweet

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 09:48 PM
  Certainly doesn't sound like a guy that plans on coming back, or has an offer to come back. However, as we know these things are...
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Curse of Big Papi

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 09:05 PM
David Ortiz was released by the Twins in December of 2002. The Twins has just been knocked out of the ALCS by the Angels and their Rally...
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Want to know the most infuriating thing about this 17 gam...

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 09:04 PM
It just occurred to me, having watched every one of these 17 atrocities called baseball games, that the Twins almost always started stron...
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2020 MLB (non-Twins) Postseason Discussion Thread

Other Baseball Today, 09:05 PM
Feel free to chime in here about any of the (non-Twins) 2020 MLB postseason games!
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GAME THREAD: 9/30/20 Minnesota Twins VS Houston Astros, 1...

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 09:05 PM
Alright Twins fans, we already know what has happened in the past. 17 losses in a row, and it feels like even more somehow. The longest l...
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Recent Blogs

Twins Notebook 8/7: A Clash with the Royals

Looking to stretch the winning streak to seven games, the Minnesota Twins came up just short in their final contest with the Pittsburgh Pirates. Now onto another cellar dweller in the Kansas City Royals, Rocco Baldelli’s club faces another series with ample opportunity to bolster the number in the win column.
Image courtesy of © David Berding-USA TODAY Sports
Last Night's Game Recap
PIT 6, MIN 5: Taylor Rogers Blows Save, Win Streak Snapped

Minnesota @ Kansas City Royals, 7:05 PM CT
Betting Lines: MIN -155, O/U 9.5

Twins Starter: Devin Smeltzer, LHP 1-0 11.57 ERA
Tonight is Smeltzer’s first start of the year as he’s worked as a bulk reliever for his two outings on the season. In six starts a year ago he posted a 4.11 ERA and allowed a .704 OPS to opposing hitters. While his ERA registered at just 3.44 when working in relief for the 2019 Twins, opponents OPS was nearly 200 points higher at .898.

Smelter may be fond of Kansas City as they provided his first Major League win. When facing them at Target Field on August 4, 2019 he went 6.0 IP allowing no runs on just two hits while fanning four and walking one.

Attached Image: Smeltzer.PNG

The prototypical profile of a soft-tossing lefty, Smeltzer’s 89 mph average on the fastball won’t blow anyone away. His primary second pitch is the curveball, and it’s there that he looks for punchouts. He’s been a high strikeout guy in the minors and generated 7.0 K/9 last year as a rookie. The homer is his bugaboo and if he can avoid some of the Royals boppers tonight should go well for him.

Royals Starter: Jakob Junis, RHP 0-0 4.15 ERA
Junis has made just one appearance this season and it was a start against the Chicago White Sox. He lasted just 4.1 IP during that one and ceded two runs on six hits. Now in his fourth Major League season, the book has all but been written on Junis given the consistency he’s shown year over year.

Attached Image: Junis.PNG

You can pencil him in for an ERA in the mid fours, and it’ll be complimented by a modest walk and strikeout rate. He’s been an innings eater of sorts throwing over 170 IP in each of the past two years for Kansas City. Where the biggest opportunity for opponents against Junis comes is launching the longball. He’s never allowed less than 1.4 HR/9 and was up to 1.6 HR/9 each of the past two seasons.

Lefties had substantially more success against him last year, though the power numbers came from both sides of the plate. Kansas City knocked the Chicago Cubs around for 13 runs last night so it will be interesting to see if the bats have any runs support left in them.


News & Notes
- The St. Louis Cardinals return to the field today following their COVID-19 outbreak. It’s the first time they’ll have played a game since July 29, and the first time all 30 teams are active and healthy since the Marlins outbreak on July 26. UPDATE: More positives for the Cardinals, so no full slate tonight and St. Louis has a postponed game today.

- Shohei Ohtani returned to the lineup for the Los Angeles Angels following the MRI revealing a forearm injury that will keep him off the mound for the rest of 2020. He homered.

- Today, Mike Trout turns 29. At 74.0 fWAR he’s already posted the 46th highest mark in MLB history. What comes from here is anyone’s guess but it’s clear we’re watching one of the best ever.

Around the AL Central
CLE 13, CIN 0
KCR 13, CHC 2
MIL 8, CHW 3

1. MIN 10-3 (+29 run differential)
2. CLE 8-6 (+17)
3. CWS 7-6 (+2)
4. DET 5-5 (-11)
5. KCR 4-10 (-11)

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Where the biggest opportunity for opponents against Junis comes is launching the longball. He’s never allowed less than 1.4 HR/9 and was up to 1.6 HR/9 each of the past two seasons.

Obviously Junis isn't a particularly good pitcher, but that HR rate doesn't seem that bad for 2019.


AL SP as a whole gave up 1.52 HR/9 in 2019 (would be curious about the effect of openers?), while Junis was at 1.59. Junis allowed 31 HR in 175.1 IP for the season; the average AL SP would have allowed 29.6 in the same number of innings.


The difference is even closer if we look at batters faced rather than innings pitched, because Junis faced more batters per inning than the average starter (due to worse than average opponent's batting average / WHIP). The average AL SP would have surrendered 30.3 HR facing the same number of batters as Junis in 2019.


Of course, that ignores park factors -- ESPN lists Kaufman Stadium as below-average in HR park factor every year of Junis's career. Although looking at Junis specifically, the difference between his career home and road HR rates may only equal about 1 HR per season.


And there it is! More words than I ever thought I'd write about Jakob Junis. :)

    • birdwatcher, Dantes929, mikelink45 and 3 others like this

Tonight is Smeltzer’s first start of the year as he’s worked as a bulk reliever for his two outings on the season.

It turns out that Devin P. Smeltzer's middle name is not Paul, but Psyllium.




/ you probably have to be old to even know why I think this is a joke.

Aug 07 2020 01:03 PM

Man, would be nice to see Donaldson back in the lineup soon.  

    • Danchat likes this

What's up with Arraez?

stringer bell
Aug 07 2020 05:06 PM

You can continue the conversation about Royals vs. Twins on the Game Thread in the Minnesota Twins Talk forum.



Why is Cruz resting tonight?He is a DH - is his bat too heavy?This is a weak looking lineup.I am concerned about the quality of our batters and when they are turning it around.Buxton looks like he is coming around.


What's up with Arraez?

Mild knee soreness, I believe. They said on the broadcast tonight that he should play Saturday or Sunday.

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