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Twins 6, Blue Jays 5: Twins Walk Off the Jays to End a Wild Game


1 hour ago, Mortimerkenny21 said:

Cave and fans in amazement! Rocco..unaware. Maybe he was pumped one second later, but just looks funny! Love the guy in the black shirt with glasses! lol

Rocco doesn’t look unaware to me. At least he’s looking in the right direction and maybe was just was keeping his ‘Bremergasm’ controlled just in case. But look at the guy in the green shirt next to the guy in the black shirt with glasses. He must be a Jays fan.

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6 hours ago, Mark G said:

I remember thinking to myself in the bottom of the 10th, why don't they intentionally walk Cave?  His run means nothing, and it sets up a force at every base but home.  Then, later, with 2nd and 3rd, why not intentionally walk Beckham to set up a force at every base including home?  But they never even considered it, from the looks of it.  I have never understood that lack of strategy.  So I looked at our stats for the year, and as an entire team we have only been issued 5 intentional walks all season so far.  And our pitching staff has only issued 4 ourselves.  Seems strange that a strategy so simple is almost gone from the game.  Makes me wonder if that is another of the analytics in play.  

I trust analytics on this if they were used.    Cave strikes out a third of the time.   Romero strikes out 12/9 innings pitched.    He in fact did strike out Cave here but just had the bad luck of the strike out ending up on first and advancing the runner.   Now you have a weak hitter who also strikes out a fair amount of time in Beckham.   If you walk him, now you have a pitcher who walks almost 4/9 innings with a wild pitch also in play.   Plus you have a batter who knows a walk wins the game so knows you have to throw strikes.   Just think of how it played out.   Cave struck out.   Beckham grounded into what should have been an easy fielder's choice.    It wasn't the strategy by the Jays that was lacking.   It was the execution.

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10 hours ago, Aggies7 said:

The twins are really, really bad at the fundamentals of the game. And they aren’t talented enough to be bad at them. 2nd in time in 3 nights a batter has struck out while attempting to sac bunt (granted these are guys who have been in the minor all year). Then 2 obvious baserunning mistakes in the 10th. The of course the complete inability to manufacture runs of any kind. To me, it’s one thing to boot a grounder in the 9th. It’s another to just be coached poorly and lacking in fundamentals 

At least we were playing a team that played more little league baseball than us for a change.

Your point about our fundamentals, or lack thereof, is spot on. The primary responsibility for that lies with the coaching staff. It is unlikely we will ever seriously contend unless our fundamentals are better than the teams that have bigger budgets. 

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8 minutes ago, Squirrel said:

Rocco doesn’t look unaware to me. At least he’s looking in the right direction and maybe was just was keeping his ‘Bremergasm’ controlled just in case. But look at the guy in the green shirt next to the guy in the black shirt with glasses. He must be a Jays fan.

Yeah it's not a dig, I'm sure he hadn't just reacted yet or was reserved about it. I'm sure he was pleased about a 3 run blast! And yeah Mr. Green shirt might be a Jays fan, not as impressed as the other folks.

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I feel bad for Bundy - he gets the Pagan, Megill, Sands, Thielbar relief squad rotation tonight. Like Gray had two nights ago (except, he had Duffy, of course).

Basically, Bundy has very little chance of a getting the win tonight unless he miraculously pitches into at least the 8th and the Twins  are up at least 5 runs when he departs.

Poor guy - must be rough to be a starting pitcher knowing that there is very little chance to get a win because your manager will yank you no matter what before the third time through the order and your relief corps is very likely not up to the task.  

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What a difference it makes to see a guy go 6IP. Set up the pen so only 3 needed to get thru 9. Left 2 over for extras. In this game we needed them.

I agree with several others that fundamentals are missing. I don't know why they aren't stressed more in the minors, and practiced more, especially in spring training. Things like bunting, hitting behind runners, smart baserunning all could have given us at least 5 more wins this year IMO.

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58 minutes ago, Mortimerkenny21 said:

Yeah it's not a dig, I'm sure he hadn't just reacted yet or was reserved about it. I'm sure he was pleased about a 3 run blast! And yeah Mr. Green shirt might be a Jays fan, not as impressed as the other folks.

And then there’s the young fan down the row looking down … probably into a cell phone. Lol … I like looking at crowd shots. (And I didn’t take your comment as a dig about Rocco. I was just going for of a juxtaposition comment about the overly outwardly expressive Bremer to the more reserved expression of Rocco.)

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3 hours ago, Otto von Ballpark said:

Further illustrating that maybe the Jays took the right strategy by pitching to Cave and Beckham in the 10th, just slightly bungled the execution:

 

Not as much as it illustrates that the modern x-inning rule is not real baseball.

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I'm glad that they won, but I hate seeing sloppy play by the Twins.  I know that they cannot work on fundamentals during the season much if at all, but they MUST focus on all of the little things at spring training next year if they want to win the majority of these types of games.  Tom Kelly's teams never played this sloppy.

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Back when Gordon was worth something in the minors I was all in to trade him off, because I didn't think he'd make it at SS and he'd only mature into an average 2B. Now that he's almost worthless, he's invaluable to the Twins. He has reinvented himself as a very adequate CF, where we had no one before. Now when Buxton's not in the line up, I no longer automatically write off the Twins as a loss. Once he established himself at CF and get acquainted with MLB, he start establish himself as a hitter. By just looking at what done at every level.

Now getting back to the game, that was a very gutsy move to send Gordon w/ no outs. If it was a perfect throw he'd be out. I haven't been impressed with the top of the order lately. Correa got a couple of nice hits last nite but has been sporactic as with Polanco. Buxton has been absent even when he's in the game and Arraez is very horrible according to his standard of hitting & fielding, We need them to step up especially in a series like Toronto.

I was very impressed w/ Mahle his 1st 4 innings but his next 2 innings w/ 3 HRs concerns me. The report back says that he gets better further he gets in a game, in this game it definitely didn't happen. I don't doubt his dominance but I'm wondering how he should be managed. Last night he might have gotten tired because of the the extra endrinaline in his system due to pitching for a new team, which his next outing will be different, Or it's because he has pitched 6+ innings regularly until now and it's catching up to him and he should be dialed back.

They used all 3 RPs that I'd trust to close  last nite  game plus #4 RP which leaves only Theilbar to set up and no one to close tonite's game, I have no idea why they brought up Sands, I have no trust in him. We have only 5 RPs I trust and that should be up here, the rest needs to be sent down or released. In a play-off games we need every RP that we trust that can fill the gaps to complete the games, otherwise we'll end up with the condition we have now. Winning a big game using our 4 top guns leaving only Theilbar (which I don't trust to close a game) and Pagan & Sand (whom I have no trust in). That stacks the deck against us going into tonites game. Against a tough play-off team if we use all or 4 out of 5 of the big guns we have we may win one game but definitely lose the series. 

We need to better manage our pitching especially our BP. We have to have at least 1 set up man and Duran or Lopez to close or it'll be to our disadvantage. We don't want that, Under that premise we'll have a gap between our rotation and the combination of Theilbar, Jax, Fulmer, Lopez & Duran. We shouldsubstitute the rest of the short relief that I don't trust with a long relief corp (that I do trust) of A Sanchez, Smeltzer, Cotton now and later Winder & Ober or maybe SWR. We should have done this from the beginning

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If Jansen comes up with the ball cleanly, and you can tell he thought he had from the way he continued the play, Gordon is out by a step (or however you measure it when he's sliding).  Chapman's throw wasn't perfect, arriving on a short hop it looks like, but that play gets made more times than not.  Nice sweep of the plate with his oven mitt by Gordon, but that was after the drop.

As for Rocco's lack of emotiveness on the HR photo, he and one of his coaches he was conferring with about something might have been the only ones in the dugout with something better to do than spectate.

As for the top of the tenth, Fulmer's strikeout of the leadoff batter was key.  And kudos to Contreras in center for being enough of a threat that they didn't send the runner, because I thought the book on him was to test his arm any chance you get.

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4 hours ago, Otto von Ballpark said:

Further illustrating that maybe the Jays took the right strategy by pitching to Cave and Beckham in the 10th, just slightly bungled the execution:

 

I'm not against the man-on-second rule in extra innings, but MLB needs to figure out a way to segregate the extra innings stats from the regular stats, or at least for the pitchers.  Under regular rules a pitcher can get a screwy loss (or win), but oddities a little less weird than this come up all the time, it seems.

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17 minutes ago, ashbury said:

I'm not against the man-on-second rule in extra innings, but MLB needs to figure out a way to segregate the extra innings stats from the regular stats, or at least for the pitchers.  Under regular rules a pitcher can get a screwy loss (or win), but oddities a little less weird than this come up all the time, it seems.

How about making that 2nd base runner in extra innings and unearned run for the pitcher?

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23 minutes ago, Bigfork Twins Guy said:

How about making that 2nd base runner in extra innings and unearned run for the pitcher?

It already is.  That runner is treated for scorecard purposes like some sort of weird two-base catcher's interference.  So, there are a lot of losses pinned on pitchers who gave up zero earned runs.

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43 minutes ago, ashbury said:

I'm not against the man-on-second rule in extra innings, but MLB needs to figure out a way to segregate the extra innings stats from the regular stats, or at least for the pitchers.  Under regular rules a pitcher can get a screwy loss (or win), but oddities a little less weird than this come up all the time, it seems.

I think the W-L stat for pitchers was already pretty outdated, even before the new extra inning rule.

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46 minutes ago, ashbury said:

If Jansen comes up with the ball cleanly, and you can tell he thought he had from the way he continued the play, Gordon is out by a step (or however you measure it when he's sliding).  Chapman's throw wasn't perfect, arriving on a short hop it looks like, but that play gets made more times than not.  Nice sweep of the plate with his oven mitt by Gordon, but that was after the drop.

As for Rocco's lack of emotiveness on the HR photo, he and one of his coaches he was conferring with about something might have been the only ones in the dugout with something better to do than spectate.

As for the top of the tenth, Fulmer's strikeout of the leadoff batter was key.  And kudos to Contreras in center for being enough of a threat that they didn't send the runner, because I thought the book on his was to test his arm any chance you get.

It doesn’t look like Jansen dropped the ball. It looks like he never had it in his mitt. But yeah, if Chapman makes a better throw and/or if Jansen actually has the ball in his mitt, yeah, Gordon is out and we would be one out with runners at first and second. Or, if the catcher hadn’t missed the catch on strike three to Cave or if he had made the throw to first, there would have been one out with Gordon at third when Beckham came up to bat. And then if Beckham hits the same way, we’d still likely have the same play at the plate and if Chapman makes a clean throw and if Jansen makes a clean play then we’d be at two outs with a runner at first with Contreras up to bat. If he gets out, then it’s back to our BP and we if ourselves out of a win. The if game is an interesting exercise, but I’ll stick to our win, and choose it gladly. Because we won! Woohoo! 🙂

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21 minutes ago, Otto von Ballpark said:

I think the W-L stat for pitchers was already pretty outdated, even before the new extra inning rule.

No disagreement there.  I guess my point is that whatever the rules are, it's the pitcher's job to stop any runs from scoring.  The extra inning rule makes it harder, but some pitchers do the job better than others.  So I want some stats that tell me who's who, over the course of the long season. 

ERA becomes useless too - reliever in the bottom of the tenth gives up a leadoff single, the runner on second scores in some routine way, boom, game over.  Reliever strikes out two, give up that single, game over.  Reliever does a little better, his team lives to fight another inning.

OPS-against probably does the job, maybe OBP is even more pertinent, but I want it extra-innings only.

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23 minutes ago, Squirrel said:

It doesn’t look like Jansen dropped the ball. It looks like he never had it in his mitt.

Probably better if I'd said "never had secure possession," the criterion for making the putout.  He wheeled around for the tag, as though he thought he did.

Jansen apparently is a sound defensive catcher, who had a rough tenth inning that you don't really wish on anyone except to the degree you need it for the win.

Happy for the win, and it's very often sound strategy to push the opponent into having to make a perfect play.  Especially when the downside risk is only an out at home but a runner replacing him at third and still only one out.  In retrospect that "defensive indifference" letting Cave take second may have tilted the odds on Gordon making the break for home, though someone would have to ask him because it's probably just instinct and experience.

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Did not watch the 10th inning. After seeing Rocco ignore 2 chances to score in the 7th and 8th innings with leadoff doubles I figured they were going to lose. It's beyond me, that any big league Manager, especially Rocco, doesn't value sacrifice bunts especially with zero outs and runners on 2nd. It only takes a fly ball to score a run if you get that runner to third, but it's not in the playbook. Maybe if Rocco lifts Leon in the 7th for a pinch runner, like Buxton who was available, he scores on Correa's single, but no it's not in the playbook. Maybe if Rocco has Theilbar warming up in the 9th in case Lopez faulters he's able to bring him in to face the lefty Tapia but, that's not in the playbook. The Twins were lucky to win this game, despite no help from the Manager.

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3 hours ago, Dantes929 said:

I trust analytics on this if they were used.    Cave strikes out a third of the time.   Romero strikes out 12/9 innings pitched.    He in fact did strike out Cave here but just had the bad luck of the strike out ending up on first and advancing the runner.   Now you have a weak hitter who also strikes out a fair amount of time in Beckham.   If you walk him, now you have a pitcher who walks almost 4/9 innings with a wild pitch also in play.   Plus you have a batter who knows a walk wins the game so knows you have to throw strikes.   Just think of how it played out.   Cave struck out.   Beckham grounded into what should have been an easy fielder's choice.    It wasn't the strategy by the Jays that was lacking.   It was the execution.

Okay, guys, you can stop piling on now.  :)  I understand what you are saying, but no one has convinced me the strategy overall, as a part of in game managing, should be dead and gone from the game.  As I said, in 106 games our team and all other teams we have played combined has issues 9 IBB's in our 106 games.  That is more than individual circumstances, it must be what the analytics are saying overall.  And, frankly, I don't get it.

Take last night.  Someone mentioned the players due up and why one would want to pitch to them.  It is precisely that, the 7,8, and 9 hitters, weak hitters on paper, that you would set up the force all around because, as I said, their run doesn't mean anything.  Pitching to hitters with no force possible, and already in scoring position, no outs........virtually anything bad can happen when the ball is put in play.  You are playing for the strike out, period.  Anything other than perfect execution all across the board, and you get..........well, last night.  

Far wiser people than I have asked the same question on TV multiple times since the inception of the ghost runner on 2nd in extra innings.  And none of the former player color commentators have had an answer (at least in the games I have seen) as to why not, because they played in a period when it would have been next to automatic.  Bringing the infield in and having no where to go but tag plays everywhere but first is asking for........well, again, last night.  That is not to say it works every time it is used, but to never use it?  I am curious as to why the computer rejects it out of hand.  Same as the sacrifice bunt, maybe?  Just seems odd to me, but then I am getting used to being a lone voice in the wilderness on these type of things.  :)  

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2 hours ago, Doctor Gast said:

Now getting back to the game, that was a very gutsy move to send Gordon w/ no outs. If it was a perfect throw he'd be out.

It did make a difference that Cave took second base. If both go on contact you still have a runner on third with one out if a play is made at home. If the Jays hold Cave instead of giving him second on the first pitch the play is riskier.

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19 minutes ago, jorgenswest said:

It did make a difference that Cave took second base. If both go on contact you still have a runner on third with one out if a play is made at home. If the Jays hold Cave instead of giving him second on the first pitch the play is riskier.

As I mentioned, 1st and 3rd, instead of 2nd and third.  The double play comes back into play, they hold the runner this time, and the infield only has to come in slightly, because the speed of the runner at 3rd is less.  It worked, because they threw low and the catcher couldn't hang on, but the strategy is what I would question.  Anyone know what the analytics would say one way or another on this?  

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5 hours ago, GNess said:

When other teams win vs the Twins in a manner of last night's game they are referred to as "opportunistic" or "savvy". When the Twins benefit from a poor play by the opponent they are characterized on this site as "lucky" "fundamentally weak" or a "mirage". 

To each his own is an apt phrase for Twins fans. I am enjoying. this Twins team, a pennant race and the possibilities that postseason games present.

Preach. 

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1 hour ago, Mark G said:

Okay, guys, you can stop piling on now.  :)  I understand what you are saying, but no one has convinced me the strategy overall, as a part of in game managing, should be dead and gone from the game.  As I said, in 106 games our team and all other teams we have played combined has issues 9 IBB's in our 106 games.  That is more than individual circumstances, it must be what the analytics are saying overall.  And, frankly, I don't get it.

Take last night.  Someone mentioned the players due up and why one would want to pitch to them.  It is precisely that, the 7,8, and 9 hitters, weak hitters on paper, that you would set up the force all around because, as I said, their run doesn't mean anything.  Pitching to hitters with no force possible, and already in scoring position, no outs........virtually anything bad can happen when the ball is put in play.  You are playing for the strike out, period.  Anything other than perfect execution all across the board, and you get..........well, last night.  

Far wiser people than I have asked the same question on TV multiple times since the inception of the ghost runner on 2nd in extra innings.  And none of the former player color commentators have had an answer (at least in the games I have seen) as to why not, because they played in a period when it would have been next to automatic.  Bringing the infield in and having no where to go but tag plays everywhere but first is asking for........well, again, last night.  That is not to say it works every time it is used, but to never use it?  I am curious as to why the computer rejects it out of hand.  Same as the sacrifice bunt, maybe?  Just seems odd to me, but then I am getting used to being a lone voice in the wilderness on these type of things.  :)  

I wasn't speaking to your larger question of intentional walk number but the individual situation.   If you end up walking both those guys you are going to face Urshela and Arraez.     Cave to me is a no brainer because he strikes out a lot and you have a strikeout pitcher.    You strike him out (and actually get the out) and numbers change.    There are definitely situations where I would walk guys so I am surprised by your stats but last night would not be exhibit A for intentionally walking guys.   As far as walks go I think players don't work on it as much but also I think it is just tougher to hit a 98mph fastball than the 92mph that guys used to face.    On the flip side, the only thing worse than major league players executing a sacrifice bunt is major league teams defending sacrifice bunts so kind of a wash for me.

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1 hour ago, Mark G said:

Take last night.  Someone mentioned the players due up and why one would want to pitch to them.  It is precisely that, the 7,8, and 9 hitters, weak hitters on paper, that you would set up the force all around because, as I said, their run doesn't mean anything.  Pitching to hitters with no force possible, and already in scoring position, no outs........virtually anything bad can happen when the ball is put in play.  You are playing for the strike out, period.  Anything other than perfect execution all across the board, and you get..........well, last night.

You want to talk margin of error?

If you intentionally walk the 7 hitter, and you fail to turn a double play, then the top of the order will come to the plate in the inning, no matter what else you do. That means facing the league leader in batting average in Luis Arraez, rather than Jake Cave.

Once Cave reaches, then you're potentially facing Carlos Correa instead of Tim Beckham.

There's no easy way here. The Jays choice is entirely defensible.

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4 hours ago, Otto von Ballpark said:

I think the W-L stat for pitchers was already pretty outdated, even before the new extra inning rule.

I think it is outdated for only the chumps that can't go 5 innings. Or the teams that use an opener (which seems to have had its run already). But for "real" starters, like Verlander and Scherzer and Cole and Kershaw etc..... it means a lot. The pen can blow the lead you hand them, and get "deGromed", but a win for a starter means you handed the pen the lead after at least 5 and that means a lot in my book. It is only outdated for those that dismis the history of baseball. The extra inning rule is for people who grew up and live in their phones and have a 1 second bite attention span that was programmed into them. Before you know it, there will be a 30 second home run derby that settles tie games. Putrid.

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