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  • CLE 6, MIN 3: Cleveland Gets To Romo, Takes Series


    Andrew Gebo

    Sergio Romo caused a bit of a stir Monday with a fiery outburst, but the flames were dulled tonight. Cleveland took the lead in the eighth inning after Romo retired just one of the five batters he faced. After dropping the series, the Twins’ lead in the division is down to a half game.

    Image courtesy of © David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

    Box Score

    Berríos: 5.2 IP, 7 H, 3 ER, 4 BB, 6 K (103 pitches, 63 strikes)

    Home Runs: Kepler (7)

    Bottom 3 WPA: Romo -.323, Cruz -.178, Polanco -.135

    Win Probability Chart (via FanGraphs):

    ccs-8747-0-68451700-1598495338.png

    Berrios Struggles Early then Settles Down

    Jose Berrios entered tonight's start coming off his best start of the year his last time out and the early results for Jose were not as good as his last outing. Berrios struggled with his command, walking three batters through the first three innings.

    He was able to escape an early jam in the fist with some help from Max Kepler, who made a spectacular catch at the wall in right field. The biggest blemish of the night for Jose came in the third inning when he surrendered a three-run home run to Jose Ramirez, which gave Cleveland an early 3-2 lead.

    https://twitter.com/Indians/status/1298782223970304000

    After the third inning, Berrios was able to settle in and limit the damage. He recorded five strikeouts over the next two innings and kept Minnesota in the game. Jose ran into some trouble again in the sixth after he gave up a two-out double to Greg Allen and a walk to Roberto Perez. He was then relieved by Tyler Clippard, who made his first appearance since being hit by a line drive in his last outing.

    Jose finished his night with a line of 5.2 IP, 7 H, 3 ER, 4 BB, 6 K -- it certainly wasn’t his best effort, but it wasn’t a terrible outing either and he gave his team a chance to win, which is all you can really ask for.

    Offense Starts With a Bang

    Max Kepler continued to do Max Kepler things when he led off the game with a solo home run off Mike Clevinger, who was making his first start since being reassigned for violating COVID-19 protocol.

    https://twitter.com/Twins/status/1298765052737196033

    Minnesota would add another run in the second inning after LaMonte Wade Jr singled, scoring Sano who had extended his hit streak to 10 games with a one-out double.

    The bats went quiet through the middle innings as Mike Clevinger was able to settle in and silence the Minnesota offensive attack. They finally broke through again in the seventh when Ehire Adrianza pinch hit for LaMonte Wade against Oliver Perez and ripped a double to left field. Adrianza would advance to third on a deep fly ball and later scored on a Jake Cave bloop single over the drawn in Cleveland infield, which tied the game at 3-3.

    Bullpen Falters

    Tyler Duffey worked a scoreless seventh inning, retiring the Indians in order and striking out two. Rocco handed the ball to Romo in the eighth and it did not go as planned. Romo found himself in trouble right away after allowing a single and a walk followed by a double and a sac fly, which gave Cleveland a 5-3 lead. At innings end it was 6-3 in the favor of Cleveland.

    Cleveland Takes the Series

    The Twins ended up going down 1-2-3 in the 9th and the Indians took the game and series. They have moved to within a half game of first place in the division. The Twins will now move on to play Detroit and Cleveland will head to St. Louis.

    Bullpen Usage Spreadsheet

    ccs-8747-0-18102100-1598495314_thumb.png

    Postgame Pint

    Immediately following a 6-3 loss to Cleveland, Nick Nelson, Jeremy Nygaard and Andrew Thares discuss the loss with Twins Daily's live virtual audience.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=idLwOjD40iA&feature=youtu.be

    Download The Postgame Pint Podcast

    You can also listen to the Postgame Pint and never miss another one. Just head over to our iTunes page and subscribe. Every morning you'll have a new episode waiting for you. Or listen wherever you download your favorite podcasts.

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    This does not look or feel like a 20-12 team. Have only scored >5 runs a total of 5 times in August, SP’s unable to complete 6 innings, asking too much out of the bullpen on a nightly basis. Injuries. Cleveland and Chicago are not going away. This could be a third place finish. And it IS still important for seeding purposes even in this crazy playoff year. The soft as baby poo schedule has masked many issues.

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    “Jose finished his night with a line of 5.2 IP, 7 H, 3 ER, 4 BB, 6 K -- it certainly wasn’t his best effort, but it wasn’t a terrible outing either and he gave his team a chance to win, which is all you can really ask for.”

     

    Cleveland has one of the worse offenses in all of baseball. Command was horrible pretty much the entire game. A ton of base runners, 105 pitches to get through 5.2. I realize it’s just one game, and it’s Major League Baseball, but if you can’t ask for more, let’s drop him to the three or four spot in the rotation. Certainly for a series against a playoff team with a good lineup.

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    I never like the Twins to lose, of course. But last night didn't really bother me. This one stings a bit. Even the best pen arms have bad games. Unfortunately it was Romo's night. And it was a bad one. I felt like tonight was a rather important game and it was a tough one to lose.

     

    I appreciate Aggies7's comment about how it sometimes feels like this really isn't a 20-1× team. But I think a lot of teams feel that way right now. And winning is still winning. It's one series, and time to move on to the next and win that one.

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    Injuries are mounting and the bats continue to be cold. Suddenly Cruz is struggling and you can definitely see the ripple effect. Tonight's loss stung more for me. This was a winnable game and would have provided a little breathing room. Was really disappointed that Duffey didn't come back out for the 8th. He made Ramirez and Lindor look helpless, only threw 9 pitches and hadn't pitched in days. 

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    Yeah, it's a really weird season, and most teams (besides maybe the White Sox and Padres) are lamenting their offensive production. I don't think the Twins should put too much stock into winning the division this season. They just need to do what they can to get everyone healthy and as productive as possible by the end of September, so I'm not too discouraged by this series. The fact that every playoff team has to play a three game series in the first round, regardless of their regular season finish, just completely disincentivizes regular season wins. After all, I'd rather face a team like the Yankees or A's in a three game series than a seven game series.

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    "....it certainly wasn’t his best effort, but it wasn’t a terrible outing either and he gave his team a chance to win, which is all you can really ask for."

     

    I think most want and ask for the Ace to be smothering and totally shut down..... at least more that once a month. They ask that of themselves, too. Just giving your team a chance to win.... well, those teams don't usually win it all. And it takes more than one pitcher.

     

    I have always felt Romo is a risk in the back end of games and have been pleasantly surprised a bunch. I fear this type of outing will be seen more often. 

     

    Sure hope this "fearsome" offense becomes one.

     

    0-2 for the second half of this short season.

     

     

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    I have always felt Romo is a risk in the back end of games and have been pleasantly surprised a bunch. I fear this type of outing will be seen more often. 

     

    I've always felt the same. A 40 year-old guy throwing the same 78 MPH pitch 90% of the time just seems like a recipe for disaster....like you, I've been surprised with the good results. But when I see him get hit hard, I'm not surprised either!

     

    Twins lucky they got away with 1 win here. The offense seems to have 1 guy carry them for stretches: Kepler, Cruz, Sano, Gonzalez....but it's rare that everyone's "on" at the same time.

     

    Bust Josh Donaldson shouldn't be able to hide from blame. Injuries aren't anyone's fault, but it sure is frustrating to get only 5 games from our $100 million man. And he played quite poorly in those games also.

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    How long will it be before Berrios has to simplify his delivery?

     

    He's got a lot of moving parts, and every game he pitches, you don't know if he will be able to locate, let alone command, his fast ball or his curve.

     

    To me that means you pare back to a simpler wind up, something more repeatable, more reliable in how the ball and body combine to propel the baseball.

     

    You heard it here first:  Berrios needs to simplify his wind up for the sake of consistency.

     

    As for Romo, his raw stuff is just not that good.  He can maybe shut down the KC and Detroits of the league, but asking him to protect a lead against a good hitting team, which the Twins will face in the playoffs, just not going to happen.

     

    Duffy and Clippard are their best pitchers right now.  No reason Duffy after throwing, what?, 10 pitches in the 7th -- no reason he could not have handled the 8th. 

     

    Baldelli is not trying to win these games per se, he is feeling out his bullpen, giving them experience and shots at winning, maybe partly not to let a team like the Tribe get too familiar with our people.

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    The Twins lost two of three to a good team in their home ballpark. That does not discourage me too much. It is a disappointment because they caught both Bieber and Clevinger when they weren't on top of their game and let them escape. Berríos also wasn't sharp, but did get 17 outs against the top-heavy Cleveland lineup. 

     

    The offense continues to sputter, this series including Nelson Cruz. Getting back Donaldson will help if it is the 2019 Bringer of Rain. Same for Garver. 

     

    Romo got hit and didn't have great command again. That's his third straight shaky appearance. I don't think he's a better option to close games than Taylor Rogers. Duffey pitched for the first time in a while and was lights out. I was concerned when his first pitch was a fastball at "only" 91, but he got his heater up to the mid 90s and struck out both Ramirez and Lindor on three pitches.

     

    Finally, let's hope Kepler is OK. In one plus inning he hit a homer and robbed the Tribe of multiple runs. He has a lot of value for this club.

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    What a horse crap game. Berrios has had one great game, the rest of the time he has been so-so at best. Romo, agree with the above comments that it is surprising how he gets the results he does, most nights. 

     

    Last night wasn't good. Yes, the bats aren't getting it done. But this team is missing Buxton, Donaldson, Garver and now Kepler. Hell, last night might have been another of Kepler's three homer games in Cleveland. What a difference that would have made.

     

    As much as I am disappointed of late, I am optimistic that as health returns to so many of these guys the team will get on track by the time the season ends. And bring on Big Mike next time thru the rotation. Oh, and Duffey has been just plain lights out. Add me to the list of those who were surprised he didn't return for 8th after throwing just a few pitches in the 7th.

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    Romo’s frisbee has been off the mark his last 3 outings. He was lucky to squeak by the first 2 without a ton of damage, and the pendulum swung the other way last night.

     

    It still feels like most of the players are trying to catch up to MLB pitching, except Sano and Cruz. Clevenger challenged our hitters with letter high and above fastballs and succeeded. Last year the Twins feasted on that pitch and sent a majority of them over the fence.

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    I am seeing a trend in posts and the Pint sessions - we just have to get to the playoffs, don't worry about winning the division...I can't stand it.  I want to win.  We should have done better at Cleveland, we should not be making excuses for losses.  Sorry, but once we get into the acceptance of losing in any circumstance we prepare for post season losing too.

     

    Play to win, play hard, and if you lose don't say it is acceptable. 

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    The way Berrios has pitched isn't going to earn him an ace contract extension he (or rather his agent) believed he deserved. Maeda and Dobnak have outpitched him. And Pineda, who arguably had become our best starting pitcher last year, returns soon. Hopefully Berrios (and Odorizzi) can get on track - we need more from them if we hope to have any playoff success.

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    The way Berrios has pitched isn't going to earn him an ace contract extension he (or rather his agent) believed he deserved. Maeda and Dobnak have outpitched him. And Pineda, who arguably had become our best starting pitcher last year, returns soon. Hopefully Berrios (and Odorizzi) can get on track - we need more from them if we hope to have any playoff success.

    I have been thinking the same, Finlander. Should two of Odorizzi, Hill or Pineda pitch well the last 25+ games, there is a chance Berrios could miss being part of the playoff rotation should they makes the playoffs...which is highly likely. Can't see the Manager not including him in the starting four, but will he have deserved it. He can make a statement by being closer to the pitcher he was a week ago than last night.

     

    Guess time will tell.

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    Romo is maybe the 5th or 6th best reliever on the team, hopefully Rocco starts treating him as such. 

    Bullpens are always fluid over the course of the season. I don't think there was anything wrong with riding him out while he was hot. Who would have guessed Fernando Rodney who was horrific with the A's would be a contributor to a WS winning bullpen last year? Hopefully Romo finds his groove again. Nothing wrong with having multiple late inning options! 

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    I am seeing a trend in posts and the Pint sessions - we just have to get to the playoffs, don't worry about winning the division...I can't stand it.  I want to win.  We should have done better at Cleveland, we should not be making excuses for losses.  Sorry, but once we get into the acceptance of losing in any circumstance we prepare for post season losing too.

     

    Play to win, play hard, and if you lose don't say it is acceptable. 

    I hear you. It's not that they shouldn't be playing hard and not trying to win, but they do need to be smart about it. It sucks losing to Cleveland, but I'd rather they let players get fully healthy and work out their kinks now instead of going all out to win a single regular season game.

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    We got outpitched and outhit.
    Maybe lucky to get that one game. There is no one to be excited about right now. I thought Jorge was off his game too. I will really start to worry if we don't put up some better numbers against detroit.

     

    Not really out hit. In fact, equal number of hits by games end, and starting the bottom of the 8th, the Twins had 10 hits to Cleveland's 7. The bottom of the 8th brought 3 hits, 2 more walks (to make the total 6 given) and a HBP. 6 walks killed us. 2 scored, and the 3 run homer off Berrios was by an inch or two distance and 10 inches from being foul. Timely hitting, maybe. But the 7 extra base runners given to Cleveland by the pitching put several more runners in scoring position.

     

    These are the type of games that show what a team has, not the ones playing Detroit. This is what a team has to overcome to become serious contenders, and advance in the playoffs. What we are seeing with Taylor blowing Maeda's gem, and these last two in Cleveland, are a team not ready, again, for the prime time and the bright lights. They hae some time to get there, though. And Baldelli seems to be playing the slow game and trying to make sure the team that is ready for post season is the healthy team we want to field, instead of this team.

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    Romo is maybe the 5th or 6th best reliever on the team, hopefully Rocco starts treating him as such. 

     

     

    This is probably an unpopular idea, but if I were GM, I'd dangle both Romo and Clippard at the deadline hoping for an outsized prospect return. I'd be inclined to run with what we have: Duffy, Rogers, and May, then Wisler, Stashak, Alcala, Littell, Thielbar, Poppen, and if needed, Duran, Smeltzer, Coulombe, Colina, etc.

     

    I might even see if a team really really really wants Rosario. Cave, too. I'm assuming Kirilloff and/or Larnach are looking good, maybe Lewis as well.

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