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Front Page: Twins Game Recap (9/11): Depleted Twins Fail to Match Up With Strasburg and Nationals

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#1 Andrew Thares

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Posted 11 September 2019 - 09:01 PM

With the Washington Nationals throwing Stephen Strasburg up against Martin Perez for the Minnesota Twins and their depleted lineup, it was going to be a tough test to secure the second win in as many nights for the Twins. The Twins had a few chances as the game went on, but failed to come through with any clutch hits, as they fell to the Nationals by a score of 6-2.Box Score
Perez: 5 IP, 6 H, 5 ER, 3 BB, 4 K, 65.6% strikes (59 of 90 pitches)
Home Runs: Polanco (21)
Multi-Hit Games: Arraez (3 for 5), Polanco (2 for 5, HR), Castro (2 for 4)
WPA of +0.1: Cruz .101
WPA of -0.1: Perez -.220, Rosario -.161, Astudillo -.159, Adrianza -.105

The Nationals jumped all over Martin Perez, from the get-go. After retiring Trea Turner for the first out of the game, Perez gave up a double to Adam Eaton, walked Anthony Rendon, a single to Juan Soto and a single to Ryan Zimmerman. By the time the Twins even sent their first hitter to the plate, they already trailed by a score of 2-0.

The top of the third started off like a pretty harmless inning. Martin Perez retired Adam Eaton and Anthony Rendon to get two quick outs, but after a walk to Juan Soto things got interesting. Perez got Howie Kendrick down 0-2 and delivered a quality slider down below the zone that Kendrick lifted into right field for what looked like a routine fly out. However, with Eddie Rosario, nothing has been routine for him in the outfield this year, and that was the case with this fly ball, as he let it sail over his head for an RBI-double. Just two pitches later, Ryan Zimmerman made the Twins pay dearly for this mistake, as he took Perez deep to give the Nationals a 5-0 lead.

The Twins were able to answer back with a couple of runs in the bottom of the inning, thanks to a Luis Arraez one-out single, and Jorge Polanco taking Stephen Strasburg deep to cut the deficit down to three. Polanco’s homer was the Twins 277th of the season and gave the Twins the lead in the home run race over the New York Yankees.



During the middle innings the bats for both teams stayed quiet. The Twins relievers, Zack Littell, Brusdar Graterol and Fernando Romero, all pitched scoreless innings to keep the Twins in the game. Unfortunately, the Twins were unable to take advantage of that. They put up a two-out threat in the fourth, thanks to a LaMonte Wade walk, and a Jonathan Schoop double, but Jason Castro was rung up on strikes to nullify that threat. In the bottom of the eighth, the Twins had yet another chance. The Nationals made a questionable move to bring former Twin Fernando Rodney, and his 5.54 ERA into the game to face Polanco, Cruz and Rosario. The inning started off strong for the Twins, as Polanco reached on an infield hit, and Cruz drew a walk, but then Rosario, Astudillo and Adrianza all hit lazy fly balls to the outfield, killing the Twins' chances. All this was done, by the way, with Mitch Garver waiting in the dugout with his helmet and batting gloves on but was never called upon to take an at-bat that could have tied the ballgame.

Randy Dobnak came in to pitch for the Twins in the top of the ninth, and promptly gave up a solo home run to Trea Turner, to extend the Nationals lead to 6-2, which would be the final score of the ballgame, as the Twins got a couple of runners on but failed to score in the bottom of the ninth.

Bullpen Usage
Here’s a quick look at the number of pitches thrown by the bullpen over the past five days:

Next Three Games
Thu vs WSH, 6:40 pm CT (Corbin-Gibson)
Fri at CLE, 6:10 pm CT (Odorizzi-Civale)
Sat at CLE, 6:10 pm CT (TBD-TBD)

Last Game
Twins Game Recap (9/10): Berrios Bounces Back in Twins Win

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#2 JadenPoint

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Posted 11 September 2019 - 09:17 PM

The Twins best player on this home stand and Garver is not in the lineup?? Cruz doesn't look healthy to me and Wade is struggling badly at the plate. Arraez continues to impress!
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#3 Cooper Carlson

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Posted 11 September 2019 - 09:21 PM

Going into a game against Strasburg with Perez as your starter and a depleted lineup should not go well and that is exactly what happened. Perez wasn't bad, he just wasn't bailed out by the defense. The absence of Kepler, Marwin and Sano is really noticeable in these games.

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#4 SoDakTwinsFan4

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Posted 11 September 2019 - 09:23 PM

The line drive that Eddie Rosario didn't read properly and failed to catch cost his team 3 runs. To me he looked like someone giving a half hearted effort on a ball in some kind of recreational softball league. If catch made Dobnak would not have been pitching late to give up the home run. Would have liked to see Garver in the lineup somewhere, swinging too hot of a bat to not be in the lineup. Still disappointed in Eddie Rosario. I mean he had 20 home runs in May. I feel like he doesn't always give 100% effort. It's going to be tough against good pitching in a potential playoff series.
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#5 SoDakTwinsFan4

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Posted 11 September 2019 - 09:25 PM

"Cruz doesn't look healthy to me"



I was thinking the same thing. He was beat before his at bats even started
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#6 jkcarew

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Posted 11 September 2019 - 09:50 PM

Cruz walked twice. Obviously not going to get anything to hit with nobody hitting behind him. Sadly, Rosario qualifies as nobody since about June...then Astudillo and Adrianza. No reason to do anything with Cruz other than to see if he’ll chase.
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#7 Tom Froemming

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Posted 11 September 2019 - 09:51 PM

Martin Perez didn't get a lot of help, though he didn't help himself out much either. Here's the Twins Pitch:

 

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#8 SoDakTwinsFan4

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Posted 11 September 2019 - 10:00 PM

Cruz walked twice. Obviously not going to get anything to hit with nobody hitting behind him. Sadly, Rosario qualifies as nobody since about June...then Astudillo and Adrianza. No reason to do anything with Cruz other than to see if he’ll chase.


Good point on Cruz, but I feel like he could have gotten something to swing at if he wouldn't have chased early in the count. Or maybe I've just been playing too much MLB the Show..

#9 jimbo92107

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Posted 11 September 2019 - 11:13 PM

Time to call up Alex Kirilloff. Average outfielder, great hitter. Put him in RF, with Cave in CF and Rosario in LF. 

 

Swap Perez to the pen, replace him with Smeltzer. Start looking at Graterol as an Opener, with Thorpe as a Primary. 

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#10 howeda7

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 12:16 AM

Garver needs to play. Cron needs to play. If Sano or Kepler can play, they need to play. Everyone is banged up this time of year, time to stop babying them all. We can't win with the line-up we trotted out there tonight. And I'm looking forward to getting some pitching for Rosario. 

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#11 Original Whizzinator

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 01:39 AM

Garver needs to play. Cron needs to play. If Sano or Kepler can play, they need to play. Everyone is banged up this time of year, time to stop babying them all. We can't win with the line-up we trotted out there tonight. And I'm looking forward to getting some pitching for Rosario.

Well there you have it Rosario will now go on a hot steak. :)
I missed Littel but Grateral and Romero looked good.

#12 h2oface

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 01:54 AM

Pretty embarassing... watching Rosario, Astudillo, and Adrianza let 5.50 ERA Rodney take them out in the 8th. Eddie really needs to dig deep and step it up. Astudillo shouldn't even still be on this team. But Eddie....... he really needs to be a team leader and get his mojo working.

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#13 Platoon

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 05:25 AM

The Garver thing looked weird. Unless Garver simply got up on his own and was getting ready, it was a bad non move by Rocco. If Garver did get up on his own to get ready, it was still a bad non move by Rocco. Garver could have PH and not even caught. He was the most obvious choice to get back in the game. Maybe Chief was right? This resting thing is getting out of hand.
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#14 theBOMisthebomb

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 05:33 AM

This looked like a September 2018 Twins lineup, not a September 2019 team in the middle of a pennant race.
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#15 Vanimal46

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 06:18 AM

This was a good litmus test for the playoffs and I'm not impressed... Over the next couple of weeks they get to pad their stats against terrible teams with bad pitching.

They won't get that luxury come October, and will square off against Strasburg types every night. Right now they don't appear to be up for the challenge.
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#16 TwinkieTownKiller

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 06:24 AM

At this point, there's no reason to be sitting Garver or leaving him on the bench in big spots. This should be the stretch that we've been resting him for all year, but Rocco continues to "keep him fresh" for games that may not exist at this point. He's tempting fate in terms of possibly one of the most embarrassing collapses in Twins history. Most people will blame the injuries, when the reality is that there are several steps we could be taking along the way to mitigate them. 

 

I still think we should win the division, but I'm starting to wonder what it's going to take for Baldelli to put our best remaining players on the field on any given day. You also have to start to wonder how many times we need to see Eddie Rosario lunge at ball 4 6 inches outside with bases loaded before he gets moved out of the cleanup spot. He has absolutely shot us in the foot for the last few months and yet again Baldelli seems to be basing his decision on personal relationships rather than stats that everybody but him can see.

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#17 USAFChief

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 06:50 AM

How does Garver not hit anywhere in that 8th inning?

 

 

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#18 bighat

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 07:00 AM

 

Garver needs to play. Cron needs to play. If Sano or Kepler can play, they need to play. Everyone is banged up this time of year, time to stop babying them all. We can't win with the line-up we trotted out there tonight. And I'm looking forward to getting some pitching for Rosario. 

 

Gotta agree with you. I can understanding resting guys for "precautionary reasons" in July, maybe giving some of the regulars a few days off.

 

But the Twins can't hit right now. Can't score runs. Take away a few clutch Garver home runs and the Twins offense can barely scratch together 2 runs per game over the past 2 weeks!If Kepler, Sano, Gonzalez, and Cron can physically play right now, they should be in the lineup.

 

Cleveland has won 4 straight. They have 3 with the Twins this weekend, if they sweep (which they very well could considering both Bieber and Clevenger are going in that series), the Twins will be in a tie for 1st place on Monday morning.

 

And Oakland and Tampa are also ahead of Cleveland in the Wild Card. Both of those team by next Tuesday and could very well miss the playoffs entirely.


#19 Old Twins Cap

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 07:17 AM

Well we got a pennant race.

 

Buck up Twins fans, this is what we wanted at the beginning of the year.

 

Only bad thing is the regulars might not gain the experience of being in it.

 

But look at the young guys getting a try-out right now.

 

This will be organizationally strengthening, eventually.

 

Right now it just feels lame.

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#20 blindeke

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 07:42 AM

Rosario got a bad jump on that ball. I am pretty confident that Kepler would have gotten there. 

 

PS the stadium was pretty empty last night, and you could hear the Nationals bench pretty loudly chanting and banging in celebration after the big homer.




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