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Article: Twins Game Recap (7/13): Series Clinched Behind Big Performances From Kepler, Cave

max kepler jake cave jake odorizzi ryne harper byron buxton
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#1 Tom Froemming

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Posted 13 July 2019 - 08:41 PM

There was so much anxiety across Twins Territory heading into this Cleveland series that it seemed to overshadow the fact that this series was also an opportunity. The Twins beat Cleveland 6-2 Saturday night, giving them the chance to deliver a crushing series sweep tomorrow.Box Score
Odorizzi: 5.1 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 2 K, 60.7% strikes (54 of 89 pitches)
Bullpen: 3.2 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 4 K

Home Runs: Kepler 2 (23), Cave (2)
Multi-Hit Games: Polanco (3-for-5), Kepler (2-for-5, 2 HR), Cave (2-for-3, 2B, HR, BB), Arraez (2-for-5)

Top 3 WPA: Cave .210, Odorizzi .153, Harper .141

Jake Odorizzi made his first start since a blister sent him to the injured list. He had an excellent first half, earning him All-Star honors, but he had actually been struggling prior to the injury.

In his final four starts, Odorizzi gave up 16 earned runs in 18 1/3 innings pitched (7.85 ERA). That being the case, I was pretty anxious to see how he looked tonight. It wasn’t among his best performances of the season, but he made pitches when he had to and ended up limiting Cleveland to just one run on three hits over 5 1/3 innings.

Odorizzi ran into some trouble in the sixth, hitting the leadoff batter then issuing a two-out walk. Luckily Ryne Harper came in and retired Carlos Santana and Jason Kipnis to end the threat.

It was helpful the lineup gave Odorizzi some breathing room. Max Kepler homered in his first two at-bats, meaning he went deep off Trevor Bauer in five consecutive plate appearances. He hit three home runs against Bauer in Cleveland on June 6.



Kepler has actually faced Bauer more than any other pitcher over his career. He entered tonight with a .324/.378/.647 line against him (1.025 OPS). Pretty amazing to see that kind of ownage of such a good pitcher.

Jake Cave also homered off Bauer and provided a big two-run double in the eighth inning to give the Twins, who were only holding a one-run advantage at that point, some wiggle room.

The Twins played some nice defense, as they turned a couple double plays and Byron Buxton made an outstanding catch to take a hit away in the eighth inning.



Buxton finished out the rest of the eighth inning, but did not come out to play defense in the ninth. Similar to last night’s game, the Twins faced some adversity. Bauer struck out 11 batters in his six innings, and the Cleveland staff combined for 15 Ks. Jonathan Schoop had a particularly rough night, striking out three times and leaving five men on base. And, again, this was a 3-2 game heading into the eighth inning. The Twins have had to fight for these two victories.

With this win, the Twins have extended their lead back up to 7.5 games in the division. Jose Berrios will take the mound tomorrow afternoon and hope to put an exclamation point on what's already been a statement series for the Twins.

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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#2 IndianaTwin

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Posted 13 July 2019 - 08:52 PM

Ho-hum, another run and two hits over 3.2 fairly high-leverage innings, with four strikeouts and no walks. Our bullpen is so bad. :-)
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#3 Monticore

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Posted 13 July 2019 - 09:10 PM

Cave's ABs were particularly good. Harper did a nice job.
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#4 Danchat

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Posted 13 July 2019 - 09:12 PM

Just noticed this when I was looking up Max Kepler...

 

OSaQPuM.png

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#5 Rosterman

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Posted 13 July 2019 - 09:27 PM

Glad they pulled Odorizzi when they did. As qwell as Duffy. You have a two-run lead. Don't walk anyone. If they are going to score, let them hit a homer (which the next batter did). But don't fool around and go to a three-ball count either on a .194 hitter. Throw strikes earlier, not as a last resort. Y'know, it is probably easier to give advice and observations than actually do things during a game, right?

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#6 terrydactyls1947

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Posted 13 July 2019 - 09:41 PM

Today is Saturday, July 13, it was the 91st game of the year and the Twins hit 3 home runs.The Twins are now 56% of the way through the season.Out of 59 years, the current team ranks 10th on the all-time list of Twins' home runs in one season and are on a pace to hit 304 home runs this season.They are now 96 home runs behind the single season MLB record.The next Twins team to pass is the 2009 team that hit 172 home runs.

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#7 ashbury

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Posted 13 July 2019 - 09:44 PM

Summary:
"Why did you bring in Rogers with a 4-run lead?"
"I decided to."

 

:)

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#8 GM64

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Posted 13 July 2019 - 09:55 PM

The Kepler vs. Bauer thing reminded me of listening to the radio as a small kid and hearing how Craig Kusick owned Frank Tanana.This was the first iteration of Tanana -- flame-throwing lefty paired with Nolan Ryan -- pitching for the Angels.So I looked it up on Baseball Reference ---- not bad. 

 

59 PA, 16 walks.16-42 with 3 2B and 4 HR..381 / .542 / 1.280 

 

 

 

 

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#9 IndianaTwin

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Posted 13 July 2019 - 10:09 PM

The Kepler vs. Bauer thing reminded me of listening to the radio as a small kid and hearing how Craig Kusick owned Frank Tanana.This was the first iteration of Tanana -- flame-throwing lefty paired with Nolan Ryan -- pitching for the Angels.So I looked it up on Baseball Reference ---- not bad. 
 
59 PA, 16 walks.16-42 with 3 2B and 4 HR..381 / .542 / 1.280


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#10 howeda7

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Posted 13 July 2019 - 10:23 PM

 

Summary:
"Why did you bring in Rogers with a 4-run lead?"
"I decided to."

 

:)

We fired Rocco and hired Mike Zimmer to manage the Twins? 

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#11 Tom Froemming

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Posted 13 July 2019 - 10:29 PM

 

Summary:
"Why did you bring in Rogers with a 4-run lead?"
"I decided to."

 

:)

"He was up and hot already."

 

I don't really get it, but relievers don't like to get warmed up and not used in that night's game. Managers also seem to consider that a bullet fired anyway, so if you're odds of treating him as available for Sunday had already been reduced simply by having him warm up, I guess you might as well use him in tonight's game.

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#12 USAFChief

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Posted 13 July 2019 - 10:43 PM

One huge and noticeable difference between Baldelli and Molitor, in evidence in both games this series: Molitor routinely left his starter in too long. Then after the damage was done, he'd make his grim faced march out to the mound to remove the guy. Baldelli is much more likely to go get his starter before the game is lost.

I'm very confident that both last night and tonight, Molitor would not have removed his starter.

Huge props.
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#13 David HK

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Posted 13 July 2019 - 10:44 PM

After a stretch of not-so-hot baseball leading up to the break, they've come out in fine form the last couple of days. There's nothing like pasting the team chasing you, right in front of their own fans! Overcame a Gibby implosion, and a near-Jake implosion as well, with some tough relief pitching and timely late hitting. Now, I really really really hope Bux is OK, and Eddie R comes back soon, too.We can't take another outfield hit like we did last month.

 

Interesting on the trade front, that Boston gave up a pair of 17-yr-olds in the DSL for a solid major-league starter. Maybe we won't get hosed too badly when we finally trade for one.

 

On a lighter note, Sale got greased again! 3-9, ERA over 4. Doesn't matter he's not a White Sock anymore, I hate the Red Sox even more! Haw haw haw....!

 

*Heh... Edit time* I looked up the baseball ref. on those 2 kids the O's got. Collectively, they weigh about the same as The Crusher.:jump::jump:

Edited by David HK, 13 July 2019 - 10:50 PM.

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#14 howeda7

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Posted 13 July 2019 - 10:57 PM

 

One huge and noticeable difference between Baldelli and Molitor, in evidence in both games this series: Molitor routinely left his starter in too long. Then after the damage was done, he'd make his grim faced march out to the mound to remove the guy. Baldelli is much more likely to go get his starter before the game is lost.

I'm very confident that both last night and tonight, Molitor would not have removed his starter.

Huge props.

I also think Rocco wouldn't have removed Gibson if we were playing the Royals or really anyone but the Indians. For all his "every game counts the same" rhetoric, he's managed these two games like the division is on the line, as he should. 

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#15 Aerodeliria

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Posted 14 July 2019 - 12:38 AM

 

One huge and noticeable difference between Baldelli and Molitor, in evidence in both games this series: Molitor routinely left his starter in too long. Then after the damage was done, he'd make his grim faced march out to the mound to remove the guy. Baldelli is much more likely to go get his starter before the game is lost.

I'm very confident that both last night and tonight, Molitor would not have removed his starter.

Huge props.

I concur. Occasionally, he falls into to the trap of keeping the starter in too long (especially when the game is tied), but not very often. He seems to know pretty well when to pull the plug.


#16 waltomeal

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Posted 14 July 2019 - 01:06 AM

HL_DDS_0000000000093034.png

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#17 jimbo92107

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Posted 14 July 2019 - 01:18 AM

On defense, everybody helps get outs. On offense, everybody helps get runs. Traditional roles don't seem to matter much on the 2019 Twins. Every batter tries to make the pitcher throw strikes, then barrel up the ball and drive it somewhere. Every fielder shifts all over the place. Every pitcher finds a way to get outs. It's the team concept, carried to the nth degree. 

 

Hey wait a minute. Is that socialism?

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#18 diehardtwinsfan

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Posted 14 July 2019 - 05:57 AM

 

Just noticed this when I was looking up Max Kepler...

 

OSaQPuM.png

 

I remember something a few years ago about Kepler owning Cleveland... I don't know what his career stats are against Cleveland, but I'm guessing they are pretty impressive.


#19 diehardtwinsfan

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Posted 14 July 2019 - 05:58 AM

Have to say... keep the foot on their throat... Let's make this a statement series.

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#20 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 14 July 2019 - 05:58 AM

"He was up and hot already."

I don't really get it, but relievers don't like to get warmed up and not used in that night's game. Managers also seem to consider that a bullet fired anyway, so if you're odds of treating him as available for Sunday had already been reduced simply by having him warm up, I guess you might as well use him in tonight's game.

I actually don’t mind that as a reason. It’s pretty valid.

My biggest problem is why you’re calling upon your best reliever to warm up in a situation where literally all you need a guy to do is pitch to a <27.00 ERA (and ultimately pitch to a <36.00 ERA).

It’s not a big ask. Save your best reliever for another day.
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