Starting Pitcher: Ryan 5.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 5 K
Bottom 3 WPA: Coulombe -.401, Arraez -.147, Buxton -.125
Win Probability Chart (via FanGraphs)
After a frustrating loss in the Bronx on Monday, the Twins returned home for a double-header against Cleveland. Anticipation was as high as it could be for a losing team so late in the season, as Joe Ryan looked to follow up his exceptional previous start. Here is how the Twins lined up for game one.
Any doubts that seeing him last week would suddenly render Cleveland more able to see Joe Ryan’s fastball were quickly erased by his first two innings of work. Aside from a Harold Ramirez double, Cleveland managed four fly-outs and two strikeouts against Joe Flow, lowering his ERA to 1.93. The Twins, however, established little threat of their own, with a Max Kepler walk providing their only baserunner through two innings (before he was picked off at first base).
As Mike Petriello noted, however, Ryan’s pitch mix was significantly different from his last outing. He mixed in more breaking and off-speed pitches, keeping Cleveland’s hitters off balance.
After Ben Rortvedt led off the third inning with a single, Andrelton Simmons doubled him home on a line drive to the outfield which was badly misjudged by Harold Ramirez. The Twins took a 1-0 lead after a failed Cleveland challenge.
Bradley Zimmer tied the game in the top of the fifth, crushing an off-speed left up over the plate into the second deck in right field. Disaster struck for the Twins in the sixth. Myles Straw hit a 93 mph line drive right back at Joe Ryan, striking him on his pitching hand. Ryan couldn’t field the ball and immediately walked off the mound and field of play. Although Ryan was able to walk off under his own power, he looked visibly frustrated, slamming his glove into the dugout. Twins fans will anxiously await news on a player who has been one of the few bright spots in a season marred by underperformance and injury.
Ryan was replaced by Jorge Alcala in the sixth inning. Alcala quickly retired the side, sending the game to the bottom of the sixth. The Twins unraveled defensively in the top of the seventh. Harold Ramirez singled on a ground ball which Jorge Polanco missed. He advanced to second on a passed ball by Ben Rortvedt before an Austin Hedges double and a Luis Arraez error at third base gave Cleveland a 3-1 lead. Emmanuel Clase came on to close the game for Cleveland, dropping the Twins to 63-82. Shortly after the game, Rocco Baldelli that x-rays performed on Joe Ryan came back negative.
Bullpen Usage Chart
Game 2 of the double header begins at 6:40 CST. On Wednesday, the Twins continue their series with Cleveland. Griffin Jax will take on Cal Quantrill. First pitch is at 6:40 CST
Postgame Interviews - Coming soon