Jump to content
Twins Daily
  • Create Account

It was a rough night in every phase of the game for the Minnesota Twins, as they dropped the series finale to Cleveland by a score of 12-3.

Box Score
Starting Pitcher: Jax 4.2 IP, 7 H, 5 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 3 K
Homeruns: Sano (28)
Bottom 3 WPA: Jax (-0.201), Buxton (-0.047), Jeffers (-0.042)

Win Probability Chart (via FanGraphs)

1555654129_ScreenShot2021-09-15at9_34_13PM.png.e7a870f3c5560dec1ebe3801f6161a71.png

Griffin Jax Gets Blown Up in the Fifth
Griffin Jax’s rough first season in the Majors has been especially brutal of late, as he has posted a 7.54 ERA over his last four starts entering play on Wednesday. For a guy that is clearly pitching for a potential spot in the Twins 2022 starting rotation, these last few starts of the season are going to be very important to him.

The way things started in this ballgame, it appeared as though Jax was going to have a start that would help him start to right the ship. However, that was not be the case. Jax faced just 10 batters through the first three innings of the game, before giving up a run on a couple doubles in the fourth.

Things took a turn for the worse in the top of the fifth inning, which ended with a Twins reliever on the mound (Jovani Moran, to be specific). A single and an error put two runners on base for the Cleveland nine-hole hitter Oscar Mercado, who delivered a three-run blast into the bleachers in left, giving Cleveland a three-run lead.

The damage didn't stop there. Cleveland continued to hit up Jax before he was finally pulled with two outs in the inning and the Twins trailing by five. Jovani Moran came in to relieve Jax in just his third Major League appearance, and got Bobby Bradley to strike out looking to end the inning. 

Moran would stay out and pitch a clean 1-2-3 sixth inning, before things imploded on him as well in the seventh when he gave up three runs on four hits before having to be relieved with just one out in the inning.

Andrew Albers came in to relieve Moran, and promptly gave up a two-run blast to Bobby Bradley. One of those runs was charged to Moran, who finished with four earned runs in the inning.

Andrew Albers would stay in and pitch the final 2 2/3 innings for the Twins to help give the rest of the bullpen the night off before an off day on Thursday for some additional much-needed rest. He surrendered single runs in both the eighth and ninth innings, the latter of which coming off a solo blast from Franmil Reyes.

Twins Position Players Have Rough Night
While this game will certainly be looked back on as a rough night for the pitching staff, the position players had an equally-rough night. The defense did the pitching staff no favors as they committed two sloppy throwing errors that helped lead to Cleveland’s two big innings.

In addition to the defense, the bats were almost non-existent, at least until the game was well out of reach. The Twins bats mustered just one hit through six innings off of Cleveland starter Cal Quantrill, and it should have stayed that way through seven had it not been for a misplayed pop-up off the bat of Max Kepler that should have ended the inning. Instead, the inning stayed alive long enough for Miguel Sano to deliver a three-run blast to make the Twins offensive woes seem not as bad as they actually were.

Twins Bullpen Usage Chart

  SAT SUN MON TUE WED TOT
Minaya 0 17 0 13 0 30
Coulombe 23 0 0 27 0 50
Colomé 0 0 27 11 0 38
Duffey 0 0 38 0 0 38
Farrell 12 0 34 0 0 46
Barraclough 0 0 23 16 0 39
Moran 0 37 0 0 34 71
Thielbar 26 0 11 0 0 37
Alcalá 0 18 0 8 0 26
Albers 0 0 0 0 40 40
Garza Jr. 0 11 6 0 0 17

 

What's Next?

The Twins are off on Thursday before heading back on the road for a three-game series with the Toronto Blue Jays beginning on Friday.

Postgame Interview

 

 


View full article

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Recommended Posts

Obviously we’re just going through the motions to end the season. Hopefully we’ve learned Arraez isn’t the answer anywhere besides 2B. Several people clamored to see Gordon at SS. Is this what you wanted to see? 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I know they want to see if Moran can get thru a batting order, or that's the only explanation I see having him pitch, sit, pitch, sit, then come out yet again. He's a lefty. Is he that good that he faces everyone well and cane have his routine broken by stretches between innings?

 

At some point, the Twins need to think of a way to get starters to pitch five complete innings. That would be a major step in the right direction, and it just ain't happening with Ober, Jax, Barnes, Gant, Albers. 

 

Maybe it is time to see if Jax can be used in long or multi-back-back-to-back days of relief.

 

Bring up Strotman is you wish to elt pitchers learn by getting battered and staying in the game. Surely this is the "learning experience" of the current field staff and front office calls for the team.

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 hours ago, Vanimal46 said:

Obviously we’re just going through the motions to end the season. Hopefully we’ve learned Arraez isn’t the answer anywhere besides 2B. Several people clamored to see Gordon at SS. Is this what you wanted to see? 

Yes. Gordon at SS. Good or bad, let's figure out what's happening next year.  What do we have to lose right now? Fourth place? Big deal, look ahead and figure out how to move forward. If he can't play SS, fine, figure out the next step.

Agreed on Moran- how is it helping him develop by leaving him in for multiple innings until the wheels fall off? What are we learning there? Ridiculous.

OK, let's go back and check the betting lines- who had Jax/Ryan/Ober/Barnes/Albers as our starters in September? That pretty much describes the year, doesn't it? I would add Pineda but he's about due to get hurt again, I think.

I want to learn as much as we can about our young players' chances and then end the 2021 season with a stake in its heart.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

A lot of us wanted to see what these young players could do in a lost season and so there are going to be nights like tonight.  Almost all pitchers have trouble adjusting to the MLB level when working against the best of the best.  Berrios was horrible his first season should we have given up on him right away? Our experienced hitters didn't fair too well in this game either.  Sometimes games go off the rails even for good teams.  I have seen Tampa crushed by Baltimore etc. etc.

Jax has some good stuff whether it is enough to stay in the rotation or not is hard to say at this point but he certainly can be a pen arm if needed.  The first time through the order went well the second time not so much.

Not sure why they had Moran out there that long other than to rest the bullpen as much as possible since they have pitched the majority innings recently, but it was a bit painful watching him struggle.  Still it should help him better understand what will and will not work at this level.

Watching that game was hard not gonna lie.  With so little offense  and poor pitching my time would have been better spent doing other things so I get the frustration but I do think failure games like this help young pitchers learn and I would rather them learn now than next year when we are trying to earn a playoff spot.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

19 minutes ago, yeahyabetcha said:

I was in attendance for this game, first time in a couple of years.  It was a beautiful night to be at the ballpark, unfortunately the home team seemed to be just going thru the motions. 

The weather, ballpark, giveaways, and watching opposing players of interest are the remaining reasons to attend a Twins game at Target Field at this point in the 2021 season. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

53 minutes ago, mikelink45 said:

Bring up someone,  This selection of pitchers other than Ober and Ryan does not look like next years rotation - Barnes, Gant, and Jax belong in the BP or the end of the rotational options.  Let's see some more arms in this last gasp of a terrible season. 

YES!

 

8 hours ago, Rosterman said:

 

At some point, the Twins need to think of a way to get starters to pitch five complete innings.

Ugh, I know. And it's pretty sad that we are crossing our fingers and hoping the Twins can figure out how to do something as basic as this. I mean, this is Baseball 101. It's like talking about a plumber and saying "he really needs to figure out how to connect PVC pipes". Yeah, that's part of the job and he should have learned that on the first day of trade school!

This team was predicted by just about all experts to finish 1st this season in the Central. They haven't just underperformed, they've been the biggest disaster in MLB this year. We all know that, but sometimes I think we collectively forget just how terrible this team is.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

58 minutes ago, Dman said:

Jax has some good stuff whether it is enough to stay in the rotation or not is hard to say at this point but he certainly can be a pen arm if needed.  The first time through the order went well the second time not so much.

Not sure why they had Moran out there that long other than to rest the bullpen as much as possible since they have pitched the majority innings recently, but it was a bit painful watching him struggle.  Still it should help him better understand what will and will not work at this level.

Does Jax have good stuff, though? I'm increasingly unconvinced. He's got good command and control, but he doesn't have a ton of velocity or movement on his fastball and all of his off-speed stuff just seems...ok. He looks like a guy who needs to go back and re-tool something in the offseason to have any hope of surviving as a starter, and without a go-to out pitch I'm not sure he has much future as a reliever except as a long man/mop-up guy. I like the guy and he was worth giving a shot, but...right now he just looks bad. When Berrios was getting his brains kicked in, he still had a lively fastball and a plus curve to work with. Not sure jax has the weapons to compete.

I'm confused as to why Moran got sent out for that long of an outing as well. Do they really think he's a 2+ inning guy? With his change-up I still think he's going to be fine, but I'm not sure that 30+ pitch outings are in his wheelhouse

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I gotta think sending Moran out for the extra inning was bullpen management, to give everyone an extra day off.

agreed with others, not sure Moran has the arsenal to be a 2+ inning reliever.

 

I still want to see more of Jax. He may not be my first option for the opening day rotation, but is he the swing man? 6 starter or 8th? The average rotation uses 10 or more starters in a season, how many of those should Jax get in 2022, considering Dobnak is struggling to get healthy on a lingering finger strain?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

How to spell the right term for a guy like Jax whos is consistently excellent the first time through the order, gets hit hard the second time, and gets absolutely shelled the third time? R-E-L-I-E-F PITCHER . I think Jax has some talent but I also think we've seen enough to know that he isn't a top 5 starter on a winning team. I think the issue is whether he provides more value as the 7th or 8th starter awaiting the call from AAA or whether he could be an effective reliever in a MLB Bullpen.  I would love to give him a try in the bullpen this year but with all of the injuries I don't know that we have anyone to take his place if we give him a shot in relief. 

I'm glad Gordon played SS last night and I think we should keep doing it. I didn't see the game but we need to know if he can hold down that position. If he can't, he's a utility player fighting for the 25th or 26th spot on the 2022 Twins and we go out and get a FA SS in the off season. If he can, then we spend our SS money on pitching. One game isn't enough to know. I'd like to see him start at SS for at least 12 of the last 16 games so we can find out if he's a possible answer.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, jmlease1 said:

Does Jax have good stuff, though? I'm increasingly unconvinced. He's got good command and control, but he doesn't have a ton of velocity or movement on his fastball and all of his off-speed stuff just seems...ok. He looks like a guy who needs to go back and re-tool something in the offseason to have any hope of surviving as a starter, and without a go-to out pitch I'm not sure he has much future as a reliever except as a long man/mop-up guy. I like the guy and he was worth giving a shot, but...right now he just looks bad. When Berrios was getting his brains kicked in, he still had a lively fastball and a plus curve to work with. Not sure jax has the weapons to compete.

I'm confused as to why Moran got sent out for that long of an outing as well. Do they really think he's a 2+ inning guy? With his change-up I still think he's going to be fine, but I'm not sure that 30+ pitch outings are in his wheelhouse

Good points.  The Berrios comp was bad on my part as far as similar stuff it was meant more as an it can take time to figure out what guys have and if they can make it even guys like Berrios that have really good stuff kind of statement.

Maybe Jax doesn't have enough movement and he was stuck with guys fouling a lot of put away pitches off last night but he does have flashes of nice K stuff. By my eye test only he does seem to have really good horizontal movement in and out IMO.  He might not quite have what it takes in the end but I still think he has the stuff to stick.  Just my opinion though.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

56 minutes ago, LA VIkes Fan said:

How to spell the right term for a guy like Jax whos is consistently excellent the first time through the order, gets hit hard the second time, and gets absolutely shelled the third time? R-E-L-I-E-F PITCHER . I think Jax has some talent but I also think we've seen enough to know that he isn't a top 5 starter on a winning team. I think the issue is whether he provides more value as the 7th or 8th starter awaiting the call from AAA or whether he could be an effective reliever in a MLB Bullpen.  I would love to give him a try in the bullpen this year but with all of the injuries I don't know that we have anyone to take his place if we give him a shot in relief. 

I'm glad Gordon played SS last night and I think we should keep doing it. I didn't see the game but we need to know if he can hold down that position. If he can't, he's a utility player fighting for the 25th or 26th spot on the 2022 Twins and we go out and get a FA SS in the off season. If he can, then we spend our SS money on pitching. One game isn't enough to know. I'd like to see him start at SS for at least 12 of the last 16 games so we can find out if he's a possible answer.

 

Not sure how 12 starts this year is a better indicator than 5 years worth in the minors.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 hours ago, Dman said:

ul watching him struggle.  Still it should help him better understand what will and will not work at this level.

Watching that game was hard not gonna lie.  With so little offense  and poor pitching my time would have been better spent doing other things so I get the frustration but I do think failure games like this help young pitchers learn and I would rather them learn now than next year when we are trying to earn a playoff spot.

Yep they are a real treat for the decreasing number of fans who paid to see a game.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, joefish said:

Polanco has to stay at 2b. Not Arraez, unless they trade Jorge. So I say let's see what Gordon can do at SS.  Run him out there  for the rest of the season. Let him get comfortable, at least for a few games. 

Abolsutely. At worst, we find out that Gordon can't be an everyday SS but he gets some experience at the MLB level playing the position so he can play their on a utility basis if necessary next year. Who knows, maybe we will get lucky and he actually has a chance to play there on a regular basis. If he can, we do not have to to spend money to bring in a free agent SS and we can use that money on pitching. Probably not, but it sure as heck doesn't hurt to try him out now. It's kind of hard to care if we go 10 – 6 for the last 16 games or 6 – 10.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, yeahyabetcha said:

If the choice for the starting SS next year is Gordon or Simmons, I take Simmons 

And giving Gordon 10 more starts this year might solidify that choice toward Simmons for everyone. I get it, he's probably not a ML shortstop. But we might as well give him more chances to prove it, or prove us wrong. Absolutely nothing to lose.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 hours ago, jmlease1 said:

I'm confused as to why Moran got sent out for that long of an outing as well.

Moran's two major league games had pitch counts of 37 and 34 respectively.

In the minors this year he had 9 games with pitch counts higher than 37, completing 2 or more innings of work except for one 1.2 inning stint where he seemed to have control issues. He has gone 2 or more innings in 12 additional games where he needed fewer pitches than 37.   Three times all year was his work confined to a single inning. 

He faced 9 or more batters, i.e. at least through the batting order, 13 times in the minors, and now once with the Twins.

All of this in relief, just to be clear.  Similar profile in 2018-2019, I might add.

He's been groomed for exactly this role.  We were clamoring to see him promoted, to have a look and to get him a taste of the majors.  Why change his role now?

And if he proves out... having a lefty arm in the bullpen who can go two, especially if a couple of the staff's righty starters are prone to short appearances, wouldn't be the worst thing in the world. "Hey, Opposing Manager, you loaded up on lefty bats today? Pick your poison for innings 5 and 6, because this guy's going through your entire lineup."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 hours ago, joefish said:

Polanco has to stay at 2b. Not Arraez, unless they trade Jorge. So I say let's see what Gordon can do at SS.  Run him out there  for the rest of the season. Let him get comfortable, at least for a few games. 

As one who is NOT a fan of Arraez, Second Base is the the fielding assignment his numbers show talent for, but at that, Polanco is only good at second also.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

Featured Video

×
×
  • Create New...