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Article: MIN 4, KC 2: Comeback Complete

jorge polanco kyle gibson joe mauer matt belisle robbie grossman
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#21 Tom Froemming

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 07:34 AM

 

On Gibson- IF he can put up 3-4 more effective starts the rest of the way here, do we truly know what he is? May be worth a deep- dive to analyze what has made Gibson successful over his last several starts. May also be worth trying to determine if it is in any way remotely possible that it's sustainable?

Nick did a nice review of his turnaround late last month. Gibby's made some adjustments, and from the sound of his postgame interview he's trying a different mental approach. I wouldn't be opposed to tendering him a contract for next year, but I also wouldn't expect him to be anything more than a fourth or fifth starter over the course of a full season. Nothing wrong with that, though. That's a much different opinion than I'd have offered up a couple months ago.

 

 

Tom,THANKS MUCH for these daily write-ups!I look forward to reading them every day.

Stuff like this is music to my ears, thanks for reading. 

 

I get that it isn't an error on that Castro drop at the plate but it should have been an easy out. Can't get the ball in your glove and not hold onto it on a swipe tag. Gibson really only had one earned run this outing.

A catcher's mitt is a tough tool to work with sometimes, but I'm sure even Castro would agree with that assessment. You can see that play starting a the 0:20 mark on the MLB highlight package here. I'd love to be able to just embed these highlight packages on each article, but MLB doesn't allow playback on other websites.

 

That really bugs me, especially when using a mobile device, but I guess just even getting that link in on each of these may be more valuable than nothing at all.


#22 Dantes929

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 07:34 AM

 

All of this.  I'd go so far as to say the same thing even if they barely miss getting the 2nd wild card.

For me its more about the journey so I agree with this. If it were all about the destination I wouldn't tune in until late September.  Football is different for me.  If the Vikings are in the hunt with two games to go in the season that is when I become a fan.  Twins have been fun this year.

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Don't Sweat the Small Stuff ... and it's all small stuff.


#23 USAFChief

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 07:36 AM

Living in Omaha, I watched the game on Fox Sports KC via their team broadcast. Their crew thought Polanco may have bunted on his own. I thought they were right considering Polanco took a big rip on the first pitch of the AB right before he bunted.


I had the same impression, he did it on his own. I still hate the play...Polanco should know better (as should Molitor if it came from the dugout). All he did was leave it up to a struggling Rosario against a LHer and then Buxton with two out.

Nice win though.
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#24 Tom Froemming

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 07:53 AM

 

Living in Omaha, I watched the game on Fox Sports KC via their team broadcast. Their crew thought Polanco may have bunted on his own. I thought they were right considering Polanco took a big rip on the first pitch of the AB right before he bunted.

You know, that hadn't even occurred to me. My guess was they were letting Jorge either take a rip at "his pitch" if it came or seeing if Minor was going to fall behind, tipping the scales in Polanco's favor. I just re-watched that play, it's certainly possible that was Jorge bunting on his own.

 

The only guy I could find who has the Almighty Access who bothered to even write about it was Phil Miller of the Strib, but he just noted how rare it was for a third hitter to sac bunt. Nothing on where the decision came from. Rhett Bollinger of MLB.com even wrote an article all about Polanco's ninth inning heroics, but nothing on the bunt.

 

If anybody comes across something elsewhere, please share it. Thank you.

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#25 Tomj14

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 07:54 AM

If I did my math correct, since May 28th, Gibson's ERA is 4.29 in 18 starts.

1 game with 7 runs allowed

1 game with 6 runs allowed

1 game with 4 runs allowed

6 games with 3 runs allowed

5 games with 2 runs allowed

3 games with 1 runs allowed

1 game with 0 runs allowed

 

I will take that from my 5th starter every year.

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#26 Doubles

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 08:02 AM

 

Tom,THANKS MUCH for these daily write-ups!I look forward to reading them every day.

 

Late to the party here, but totally agree.  I look forward to these each morning, and the interesting convos that ensue.  That's a fun part about baseball to me-  bantering and second-guessing.  Baseball was made for that.

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#27 bighat

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 08:04 AM

Agreed - thanks for these write-ups, it's great as I've been unable to watch the games lately. Thanks again for doing this. 

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#28 drjim

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 08:12 AM

You know, that hadn't even occurred to me. My guess was they were letting Jorge either take a rip at "his pitch" if it came or seeing if Minor was going to fall behind, tipping the scales in Polanco's favor. I just re-watched that play, it's certainly possible that was Jorge bunting on his own.

The only guy I could find who has the Almighty Access who bothered to even write about it was Phil Miller of the Strib, but he just noted how rare it was for a third hitter to sac bunt. Nothing on where the decision came from. Rhett Bollinger of MLB.com even wrote an article all about Polanco's ninth inning heroics, but nothing on the bunt.

If anybody comes across something elsewhere, please share it. Thank you.


Rhett does tweet about bunts in real time, so at least he taps into his blogger side.

I imagine it's a pretty secondary story to include in a gamer considering how the game shook out.
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#29 Doubles

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 08:17 AM

Couple things on the play Gordon scored on:

 

*The new rule where catchers can no longer block the plate definitely came into play here.  Castro was positioned up in front of the front line of the right-handed batter's box when he caught the throw.  Accordingly, Gordon's head-first slide to the outside part of the plate necessitated Castro to have to reach back try the swipe tag.  I thought he had time to secure the ball with his bare hand while protecting the ball with his glove.  Difficult play for sure, but one I'd bet Castro would say he should have made.

 

*I totally get the new rule and its purpose in keeping guys safe, but I believe this rule has led to runs being scored that otherwise wouldn't, and I'd submit this play last night as Exhibit A.  Is it worth upping player safety?  No question.  But I wonder if there isn't a solution somewhere that keeps catchers safe without compromising their ability to make a play.

 

*Lost in all of this was how aggressively Kepler played this, got to the ball, came up throwing, and fired a one-hop strike.  Fantastic play that we'd all be raving about had the outcome been different.  Kepler is well on his way to really being an impact player here for years to come.  Big-time like.

Edited by Doubles, 08 September 2017 - 08:32 AM.

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#30 spycake

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 08:24 AM

If I did my math correct, since May 28th, Gibson's ERA is 4.29 in 18 starts.
1 game with 7 runs allowed
1 game with 6 runs allowed
1 game with 4 runs allowed
6 games with 3 runs allowed
5 games with 2 runs allowed
3 games with 1 runs allowed
1 game with 0 runs allowed

I will take that from my 5th starter every year.

A lot of marginal guys look good if you take only their best stretches. Mike Pelfrey had a 4.19 ERA after 16 starts this year too, and a 4.24 across 15 starts last summer. Gibson himself had a 4.54 after 13 starts last year, etc. Problem is, you almost certainly get bad stretches too, and you can't predict them. Overall, Gibson and Pelfrey have been almost the definition of replacement level starters the last couple years.

I don't have any particular issue with keeping Gibson in the mix for the 5th spot next year, at this point, but I wouldn't lock him into a spot or let his presence dissuade me from other rotation upgrades either.

Edited by spycake, 08 September 2017 - 08:27 AM.

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#31 Doubles

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 08:25 AM

 

I had the same impression, he did it on his own. I still hate the play...Polanco should know better (as should Molitor if it came from the dugout). All he did was leave it up to a struggling Rosario against a LHer and then Buxton with two out.

Nice win though.

 

The underlined part is what I love about the above comment.  I believe bunting has a place and can be useful at times.  You'll never hear me say, "Don't bunt, simply because I hate bunting & it's stooopid!"  Actually, you might hear me say that, but there's more to it than just that.  You have to look at how the inning could play out and assess your chances from there.  Chief nailed it above.  Well done.

 

And that doesn't even take into account the long-standing debate about bunting a runner to second base.  Especially when batting as the visiting team.

Edited by Doubles, 08 September 2017 - 08:26 AM.

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#32 Doomtints

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 08:33 AM

 

It's like fielders are being held to high school fielding standards nowadays.  

 

Think about this.  Ozzie Smith is the best fielding shortstop of all time (no offense to Omar V), and yet he had 5 seasons in his career where he had 20 or more errors.  

 

In fact, in his first 6 seasons, he averaged about 20 errors a season.

 

Last year only two shortstops had more than 18 errors.

 

It doesn't matter.  None of the defensive systems used today consider errors in any meaningful way, and unless a run scores on that play, who cares? I don't buy the whole "the rest of the runs are not charged to the pitcher based on # of outs" philosophy. If the pitcher wants to control the outcome, he can strike the guy out.

Edited by Doomtints, 08 September 2017 - 08:39 AM.


#33 Doubles

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 08:34 AM

Also worth noting is the guy who infuriated many of us by bunting in the top of the 8th, is the same guy that drove in the GW-RBIs in the top of the 9th, because, baseball.


#34 Doomtints

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 08:34 AM

 

The underlined part is what I love about the above comment.  I believe bunting has a place and can be useful at times.  You'll never hear me say, "Don't bunt, simply because I hate bunting & it's stooopid!"  Actually, you might hear me say that, but there's more to it than just that.  You have to look at how the inning could play out and assess your chances from there.  Chief nailed it above.  Well done.

 

And that doesn't even take into account the long-standing debate about bunting a runner to second base.  Especially when batting as the visiting team.

 

If the defense is unprepared for a bunt, bunt without mercy. Full stop. The bunt conversations on this website are 100% noise.


#35 Doubles

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 08:35 AM

 

The bunt conversations on this website are 100% noise.

 You might think so.  I don't. 

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#36 PDX Twin

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 08:39 AM

 

Agreed - thanks for these write-ups, it's great as I've been unable to watch the games lately. Thanks again for doing this. 

 

I also love the game write-ups. It was the one thing that was conspicuously missing at TD. Before these segments, I could learn more about the minor-league games than about the actual Twins games from the site content. For you to do this every day is amazing. We are in your debt!

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It's great to get out of the cellar ... as long as you bring something with you.


#37 DocBauer

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 08:49 AM

On Gibson- IF he can put up 3-4 more effective starts the rest of the way here, do we truly know what he is? May be worth a deep- dive to analyze what has made Gibson successful over his last several starts. May also be worth trying to determine if it is in any way remotely possible that it's sustainable?


I have to echo this comment. Gibson has always had talent, but lacked consistency and seemed to break down too often in tough situations. And I'm not saying he will definitely sustain what he is doing now or has suddenly evolved...but...he overhauled his training regime and his delivery. He also appears to have "toughened up" on the mound this season. The delivery, new mental attitude, and even Buxton noticing him opening his shoulder too soon and making a correction, has lead to a nice run the past couple of months.

If he keeps this up, I'd be in favor if bringing him back in 2018. Really hate to see him take his new self somewhere else and do well when he wouldn't cost much to bring back and be the 4th or 5th starter.
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"Nice catch Hayes...don't ever f*****g do it again."

 

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#38 Mike Sixel

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 08:54 AM

Ditto on the game write ups! thanks.

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I don't know, it is a site to discuss sports, not airline safety.....maybe we should take it less seriously?


#39 Darius

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 09:04 AM

Kyle Gibson has a sub 1.70 ERA in his last 4 starts (according to ESPN recap).

When do we start cal him "Big Game" Gibson?

In all seriousness, I think it's time to throw preconceived notions of this guy out the window. Looking at various stats/analytics, he appears to have turned a corner.

He's been our best pitcher for two months now, down the stretch in a playoff race. Bringing this guy back next year is a must. He could be an absolute bargain at the back-end of the rotation.

If I'm Molitor, and this team somehow squeaks into the ALDS, Ginny's gets one of three spots.

Really happy for the guy. By all accounts, he's a great guy. The stuff has always been there, and he's shown he could be good in the past. He came a hair away from washing out. He got crap from everyone in the State, including has manager (maybe rightfully so). He's got to feel great.
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#40 ThejacKmp

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 09:26 AM

 

I am more tolerant of bunting than you are and really like the bunt as an attempt to get a base hit. I didn't see the game. Was it definitely a sacrifice? Your 3rd sentence I agree with completely. Buxton is 1 for his last 16.  To me bunting is his hedge against slumps. Its a great weapon for him so even when he is hot I like to see him lay one down every once in a while. He's not hot at the moment.

 

Yeah to clarify, I'm talking about sacrifice bunts, not bunts for a base hit. Love bunting for a base hit, I think more players should develop this as a weapon.

 

Buxton can sac bunt because that's still bunting for a hit.

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