Not leaving Berrios in to start the 5th in game 1 (after only 88 pitches and a 1-2-3 4th on 12) with the game tied, and the pitchers he didn't use in a close and tied game, and starting the Uber driver for game 2 instead of a professional like Odorizzi.......... some of the managerial/front office choices I will never forgive or forget. Some process.
Snow forecast for the Twin Cities this weekend? That would have been lovely.
It was like I was in the twilight zone to be honest. The crazy thing is that it seemed like Rocco was trying to mimic Boone and the Yankees' strategy. Pulling a pitcher after five is the Yankees' strategy because they have a very experienced bullpen. This what they do. We don't have to follow suit. Just because Boone pulled Paxton after five, we have to pull Berrios to match this move? Despite having a bit of trouble locating his curve, Berrios' fastball still had plenty of pop. He was still throwing 95+ in his final inning, and he had only give up one earned run and only two balls had been hit hard. Isn't this a case where you apply the vaunted metrics? Berrios is still hitting 95+ and getting swinging strikes; he's only given one earned run, so let's pull him???...I wouldn't have cared if he had thrown 108 pitches if he was still bringing it.
My point is this: The Twins are not the Yankees and this notion that we can play like there is a tomorrow in the playoffs reminds me a lot of the mindset brought by Gardenhire. Berrios would not be an ace on many teams, but, for the time-being, he is the Twins' ace, so let him pitch until he starts getting hit. If we think back (way back) to 1987 and 1991, the starters in those games went as long as they could. It's different era, but the general principle should still apply IMHO. We lost the first game (which was sooooo winnable) by horrible game management and this set the tone for the next two games, whereby the process was repeated.
Tom Kelly, for all of his weaknesses as a manager, knew how to manage the team in playoff games. Maybe a chat with him is in order? Let's see if we can get this figured out by next year. I love Rocco, but that was indefensible playoff management.
OK, my rant is finished, but I'm still frustrated (apparently more than Rocco). Let the poison arrows fall from the skies.