Berríos: 5.2 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 3 K
Home Runs: Brent Rooker (1)
Bottom 3 WPA: Jeffers -.394, Simmons -.251, Colome -.185
Win Probability Chart (via FanGraphs):
Another extra-inning game, a similar result for the Twins as they lose their fifth straight extra inning game to open the 2021 season. The Twins would strike first Monday evening, but in the end it would be the Indians and Luplow who would get the last laugh.
After jumping out to a 2-0 lead the Twins were greeted to Cleveland by their former teammate Eddie Rosario. Berrios was able to work around a single by Rosario in the second inning, but the next time around Rosario got the better of his friend. Eddie dropped a double over Arraez's head in left field to score a run and then came around to tie it up on a Reyes single.
Arraez would redeem himself by slapping a single to left field that would bring Jake Cave around after he reached on an infield single and then advanced on a contact play. The 3-2 lead wasn’t enough as the bullpen couldn’t hold it once again.
Duffey came in to pitch the eighth and gave up a solo shot to Jose Ramirez to tie the game 3-3. Then stop me if you heard this before. Colome came in to try and force the 11th but instead gave up that two-run shot to Luplow that gave Cleveland the victory.
Rooker Gets Revenge
Rooker just hasn’t been able to get his bat going this season after fracturing his forearm in 2020. Monday night was the night that hopefully changes Rooker’s offensive trajectory. The second inning brought one of the positive moments of the night as Rooker sent a home run to the opposite field to collect his first home run of the 2021 season.
If Rooker’s bat does get going with that home run it may become a bit of a full circle event. Since it was a Plesac pitch that ended the Twins outfielder’s season in 2020, and it would now be a Plesac pitch that gets him back on track.
Baldelli with Another Puzzling Managerial Move
For those who have been frustrated with Baldelli’s management of games, we witnessed another reason to be unhappy. With two outs in the sixth inning and following the aforementioned Rosario score, Baldelli came out to check on and have a conversation with his starter.
The manager walked away with what appeared to be the intent to leave Jose in to finish out the inning. What Baldelli had seemingly forgotten is that pitching coach Wes Johnson had already used a mound visit earlier in the inning requiring Berrios to have to leave the game.
We will never know what would have happened if Berrios would have remained in the game, but clearly the Twins manager thought he had something left in him. Thankfully, Hansel Robles entered the game to get the final out of the inning and made it through a scoreless seventh as well. No matter what, the course of events certainly invites more scrutiny for Baldelli.
Kirilloff's First Hit
Alex Kirilloff broke his 0-for-15 slump with a double in his second at-bat tonight. Here's a look at that hit, as well as a quick review of everything that preceded it.
Bullpen Usage Spreadsheet
Click here to see the bullpen usage over the past five days (link opens a Google Sheet).