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Sherry Cerny

Twins Daily Contributor
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  2. Like
    Sherry Cerny reacted to adjacent in Twins 11, Diamondbacks 1: Dylan Bundy Shines, Offense Explodes as Twins Win   
    Ejem! Who is not gonna be in trouble against the Yankees line up?
  3. Like
    Sherry Cerny reacted to Mark G in Twins 11, Diamondbacks 1: Dylan Bundy Shines, Offense Explodes as Twins Win   
    What do you bet Rocco got called into the office and was told to shut the door for allowing a pitcher to see a batter for a 4th time.  He then convinced them it was the AZ heat that made him light headed and he lost track of time.  They bought it and told him to sit next to a fan tomorrow.  Stay tuned..........    
  4. Like
    Sherry Cerny reacted to PDX Twin in Twins 11, Diamondbacks 1: Dylan Bundy Shines, Offense Explodes as Twins Win   
    I'm a fan. I'd gladly sit next to him if I were in AZ...
  5. Like
    Sherry Cerny reacted to puckstopper1 in Twins 11, Diamondbacks 1: Dylan Bundy Shines, Offense Explodes as Twins Win   
    Glad the Twins "Freed Kiriloff" and he was able to a huge knock to break the game open.
    Larnach getting 2 hits is also encouraging.
    Scoring 11 runs without Buxton or Polanco in the lineup is VERY encouraging.
  6. Like
    Sherry Cerny reacted to Doctor Gast in Twins 11, Diamondbacks 1: Dylan Bundy Shines, Offense Explodes as Twins Win   
    Did my heart well to see hitters hitting the ball all over the field and scoring runs.
    Last year I advocated that we needed to get out of the moonblast mentality and go for more solid contact and going the other way if need be to reduce our SOs & FOs, Stated that baseball is a game of of adjustments, that the pitchers and defenses have adjusted and the hitters needed to adjust to them and the live ball become dead. And I was lambasted saying that was old school & get with the program, that's how things are done.  
    Another take away is Bundy does well with a fresh arm, 3 extra days off did wonders for his effeciency. This article stated that Wes goal is try to get his SPs to pitch as long as they can. Although it's the great majority concensus, again I think it's the wrong one. Bundy can be a pretty effecient pitcher but if he's stretched he'll be terrible, Bundy's arm doesn't bounce back that quicky if he's over-extended w/o extended rest. That said, I don't think it was a good idea to have Bundy to pitch 8 innings (eventhough he could) and come back to pitch on a normal rest.
  7. Like
    Sherry Cerny reacted to jimbo92107 in Twins 11, Diamondbacks 1: Dylan Bundy Shines, Offense Explodes as Twins Win   
    When the Twins signed Dylan Bundy, I thought it was a low-risk, low-reward gamble. Hadn't heard news about Bundy for quite a while, but what I did hear sounded like a guy whose arm was pretty much shot. 
    First few games, I thought the Twins lucked into a mature pitcher with a new repertoire of dink and dunk off speed stuff. Then he had a spell where it looked like the league read his book and was beating him with it. 
    Finally on Saturday Bundy showed that he can still be the pitcher from the first few games, and even a little better. Eight innings of one-run ball. He was getting first-pitch strikes with a slow curve, and AZ wasn't sitting on it. 
    Bundy appears to be using a "just enough" approach. Just enough velo and command with his heater. Just enough bend and command with his curves and sliders. An occasional change-up, just enough fade. The common factor was command. He threw 70 percent strikes, and most of his off-zone pitches were sucker balls. 
    It was a command performance, and it may have rescued the bullpen for the next series. Great job by Dylan Bundy.
  8. Like
    Sherry Cerny reacted to Trov in Twins 11, Diamondbacks 1: Dylan Bundy Shines, Offense Explodes as Twins Win   
    I am not going to think Bundy has turned anything around because of who he faced.  That being said, great to see him save the pen a game and go deep into a game with still low amount of pitches overall.  I did go to bed after we were up 9-0 so did not get to see much of the performance and he did get lucky with a few atom balls that a foot one way or another no hits.  On the other hand Twins got a few hits on weak contact that found a hole, not all was weak but Arraez got one to squeeze through that a foot 1 way or another may have ended the big inning before it started.  
  9. Like
    Sherry Cerny reacted to jorgenswest in Twins 11, Diamondbacks 1: Dylan Bundy Shines, Offense Explodes as Twins Win   
    I value 8 innings. Giving up one run on a sac fly with a 9-0 lead does not concern me at all. The last thing they need with a lead is walks. No walks yesterday,
    Gray’s 7 innings in a close game was probably better.
    Others commented on the atom balls. Average exit velocity for the game of 87.2 is below league average. There are probably a few hard hit outs in every game but overall he was not hit hard last night.
  10. Like
    Sherry Cerny reacted to ashbury in Twins 11, Diamondbacks 1: Dylan Bundy Shines, Offense Explodes as Twins Win   
    Depends on whether you believe the difference in 0 runs and 1 run is important.
  11. Like
    Sherry Cerny reacted to Squirrel in Twins 11, Diamondbacks 1: Dylan Bundy Shines, Offense Explodes as Twins Win   
    I know that it’s really inconceivable that a starting pitcher goes 8 innings, but it was 8 and not 6. Guess our fingers just don’t know how to type that! 😉
    What an enjoyable game to fo,low (was at work for much of it) then jump in to see the end! Just saying it was way better than the previous night is an understatement.
  12. Like
    Sherry Cerny reacted to Blyleven2011 in Twins 11, Diamondbacks 1: Dylan Bundy Shines, Offense Explodes as Twins Win   
    How to have a success in winning games ....
     
    Bundy pitches 8 solid innings  with 3 extra days rest  , 4 hits , no walks  and only 1 run ...
    cotton pitches a clean inning  ...
    Hitting was contagious with 14 hits , 3 doubles sprinkled in 2 homers  , 9 singles a 5 walks  ...
    11 runs  ,,, a recipe for success  and they scored 7 runners out 12 in scoring position  ...
     
  13. Like
    Sherry Cerny got a reaction from Squirrel in Twins 11, Diamondbacks 1: Dylan Bundy Shines, Offense Explodes as Twins Win   
    Dylan Bundy and the Twins seemed to gather themselves for the Saturday game, getting ahead of Arizona in the third inning and keeping the momentum going throughout the game. 
    Box Score
    SP: Dylan Bundy: 8 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 7 K (107 pitches, 74 strikes (69%))
    Home Runs:  Gary Sanchez (8), Ryan Jeffers (5)
    Top 3 WPA: Dylan Bundy (.137), Luis Arraez (.108), Alex Kiriloff (.106)
    Win Probability Chart (via FanGraphs)

    The game started out a little slow, a battle of the pitching in which Bundy was very solid for eight innings. Nick Gordon and Luis Arraez got on base to start the third inning followed by an RBI Single when Carlos Correa poked a ball into right field,. Max Kepler, who was 0-for-1 to start the night, followed Correa to the plate and hit the ball into the gap, scoring Arraez on an RBI double.
    The third inning was exciting to say the least as the players continued to carry the momentum, Alex Kirilloff worked a 3-2 count and ripped a ball into right field scoring both Correa and Kepler on a beautiful double. Gary Sanchez joined in on the fun as he hit his eighth home run, giving the Twins a 6-0 lead as pitcher Luke Weaver struggled throwing 52 pitches in the first three innings, most of those in the third.
    Bundy looked the best he has all season with finding the strike zone, keeping the pitch count low, and moving quickly through each inning with three-up three-down until the fourth when Alek Thomas got on first base, breaking up Bundy's no-hitter. Bundy struggled to get through the end of the inning but managed to get out of it without anyone coming home. 
    Bundy only allowed one run in his eight innings. His impressive mound appearance allowed the Twins to capitalize on offensive opportunities. Bundy going eight innings shows that Manager Rocco Baldelli certainly wants to see his pitching staff go as long as they can, and that Wes Johnson is getting them there. Bundy had outstanding command and control. 
    The Twins have a long two weeks against division rivals Cleveland Guardians and Chicago White Sox, so preserving the bullpen can prove very important. Bundy left the game with his fourth win of the season, his best outing of the season, and his 50th career win. He truly looked great. 
    The Diamondbacks left Weaver in to start the fourth inning and the Twins lineup for the third time. The Twins took advantage of every ball over the plate and blew open the lead 9-0 before Weaver was pulled from the game and replaced by Arizona’s Joe Smith. 
    With the exception of Sanchez and Jeffers home runs, the rest of the Twins hits were all singles and doubles. The Twins three seasons ago were known for hitting “bombas” all over the parks and small ball was not even a thought. This season, there seems to be almost a focus on getting the bat on the ball and putting it into play and it’s worked out for them more than it hasn’t. Their dominant offense tonight allowed Gilbert Celestino to replace Arraez in the fifth inning, giving the All-Star a chance to rest. The Twins were up 9-0 and there was no need to leave Arraez in against a lefty when Celestino could get some at-bats in and improve. Gordon moved up to cover second base and Celestino took over in centerfield. 
    Trevor Larnach broke up his small slump of going 0-for-17 in his last few appearances and the best feelings of the night: Ryan Jeffers, who has been struggling at the plate, hit a fantastic home run into left field to start out the seventh inning. Jeffers was the only Twin tonight in the starting lineup without a hit before his two-run homer. 
    Even if Jeffers is struggling at the plate, he is certainly not struggling behind it. Dick Bremer mentioned during the broadcast that this is the 21st game for the Twins where they have had two or fewer runs and of those 21, Jeffers caught 15 of those games. 
    The Twins offense and defense were both on fire. They kept the same energy all the way through the ninth inning for reliever Jharel Cotton. Correa showed off his defensive moves as Alek Thomas hit a line drive to the shortstop, who spun his body around with a solid throw to first base getting the out, A fly ball to Larnach ended the game. The energy of the team was constant all night long, ending in a Twins win.
    What’s Next? 
    The Twins finish out their series this weekend with Arizona and the west coast tour. Pitching matchups for the series finale: 
    Sunday 1:05: Chris Archer (1-2, 3.35 ERA) vs RHP Merrill Kelly (5-4, 3.68 ERA)  Postgame Interview 
     
    Bullpen Usage Spreadsheet

     

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  14. Like
    Sherry Cerny got a reaction from glunn in The Potential Cost of Acquiring Pitching in Trades   
    Thursday night, we watched as the Twins imploded late in the game against the Yankees. The depleted pitching staff struggled to keep the Yankees off the board and ultimately cost the Twins a win. The offense is on a trajectory for postseason action, but the pitching rotation and bullpen aren't even close. With the trade deadline coming in just under two months, the Twins need to capitalize on trades for available starting and back-end bullpen help. 
     
     
    With several recent graduations, the Twins’ farm system is middle of the pack in the league. Sitting at 15 on Bleacher Report’s organizational, the Twins' depth has three top 100 players and more with the capability to get there. The Twins have acquired a lot of talent through the draft but also in some quality trades. 
    Last year's Jose Berrios trade with the Blue Jays left many in the Twins community unhappy. He was an All-Star caliber pitcher for the Twins, the best one they had at the time. Berrios pitched one of his best games against the Twins last week reminding fans how much his arm is missed.  At that time, many fans thought that was the most painful trade and left a sinking hole in people's hearts, but not as much as the trade with Tampa sending the fan and clubhouse favorite Nelson Cruz to the Rays. 
    Those trades brought pitchers Joe Ryan, Drew Strotman, and Simeon Woods Richardson, as well as consensus Top 100 prospect, Austin Martin. To this point, only Joe Ryan has made a significant impact on the big-league club and bolstered them to where they are now. The Twins have an above .500 record, first place in the division, and three games ahead of the second-place Guardians. If it weren't for the trades, the team may not be stacked like it is. 
    The only place the Twins seem to be struggling is the pitching, which is a nice change for the club, which seemed to struggle in all aspects of the game last year. This season though, it’s starting rotation has taken a huge hit. Even with the extra few roster spots and time to stretch out, we have seen several pitchers lose time due to injury. Josh Winder is out with a shoulder impingement, Sonny Gray is on the IL with a pectoral strain after making a comeback from a previous trip to the IL with a leg injury. Bailey Ober is back on the IL with the groin injury that cost him three weeks earlier this season. Joe Ryan is rehabbing after missing time on the COVID-IL. Chris Paddack had Tommy John surgery last month, and Cody Stashak needs season-ending biceps/shoulder surgery. Even if they get healthy, having another starting pitcher makes all the sense. 
    At the end of the lockout, the Twins started by making some strong trades to bolster their roster, but at the end of all of the amazing acquisitions, the fan base was left wondering one question: "Where Frankie?”
    Frankie Montas, the right-handed starter from Oakland, is still there, beefing up his trade value and becoming one of the most significant assets at the trade deadline. To make this deal, the Twins would have to give the A's several players that would bolster their talent base and, hopefully, their fan base. 
    Last week, Montas had a strong appearance, a win against the Astros, something the Twins lacked early on in the season. Montas has been doing his work to keep his trade value up. He has posted a 3.20 ERA and a 0.99 WHiP in his 64 2/3 innings entering Friday, striking out 71 batters with 15 walks. The Athletics know that he is a substantial piece of everyone's puzzle and will be looking for the best trade pieces to deal him. 
    The A's spent the offseason cutting payroll, again. They traded Matt Chapman to the Blue Jays, Matt Olson to Atlanta, and Sean Manaea to the Padres. First-year manager Mark Kotsay has done a nice job working with the team in what is clearly a rebuilding phase. They acquired a lot of talent for those players, and will expect a ton in return for Montas. 
    Keeping in mind that the Twins also need to acquire at least two relief pitchers without giving away the farm for Montas, the best trade pieces for the right-hander are Alex Kirilloff, José Miranda and Jovani Moran. 
    Kirilloff and Miranda have quickly settled into the majors. Kirilloff struggled at the beginning of the season with an injury, but the outfielder has been cleaning up in St. Paul. He could be a home run hitter for the West Coast team. He has a good trade value. With all the depth in the Minnesota outfield with players like Trevor Larnach, Kyle Garlick, Gilberto Celestino, Nick Gordon, and Max Kepler, to name a few.  
    Miranda, who looked a little shaky early in his big-league time, has grown into his swing. The corner infielder has been a surprising member of the home run club that the Twins have this season, and while it's not all the time, his batting certainly has come in clutch several times.
    Because the Athletics are struggling this season with pitching, giving them a player like Jovani Moran would give them another arm to fall back on. While The Twins are seemingly struggling with their bullpen, the pitchers there, given the ability to rest, can be effective for the team. Moran has a low ERA, and 13 strikeouts in his eight innings pitched. He hasn't been a massive contributor to the Twins’ bullpen and could easily be part of a package deal. 
    Adding one more starting pitcher to the rotation, along with getting their starters healthy, would be good for the Twins. Another option might come from Cincinnati, like Sonny Gray did. Or, maybe both?
    Tyler Mahle has had a tough season for the Reds. He is 2-5 with a 5.07 ERA in 13 starts. The starting pitcher has not impacted the Reds' losses or wins, and they are several years from competing, so Mahle (and Luis Castillo) should be available. The Twins could easily trade for Montas and Mahle and still have a solid chance at making the postseason. Mahle has gone strong in six innings in his most recent appearances with a .193 ERA and 24 strikeouts in 18 innings. Most of the Twins pitching staff are just now working up to pitching six innings, Chris Archer just recently pitched five. While the trade with the Reds would not be as costly as the trade with the Athletics, Mahle would still carry a high enough price that Twins fans would have to understand another significant asset from the organization would be a part of a trade. 
    Austin Martin is a great piece to make a trade. When acquired in the trade of Berríos, Martin was a top prospect and looked promising coming into the organization. Since arriving at the Twins, however, Martin’s trade value has declined some as his power has not yet developed in-game. He is not a bad player and is hitting .244 with a .366 OBP at Double-A Wichita. Like Gary Sánchez, a change of scenery may do him well. The Twins have plenty of depth at shortstop and can afford to part with Martin as part of a package deal with Noah Miller. 
    Noah Miller, a shortstop with the Ft. Myers Mighty Mussels, was a 2021 draftee in the first round (36th overall) from Ozaukee High School in Fredonia, Wisconsin. With a similar batting average to Martin, and since the Twins have Carlos Correa and Jermaine Palacios and hopefully Royce Lewis, who suffered a season-ending ACL tear will bounce back and get healthy. There wouldn't be any logistical reasoning to keep Miller and Martin as players in the system.
    Making these two pitching acquisitions would allow the Twins to bring on at least one or two more bullpen acquisitions or give a player like Jharel Cotton more growth opportunities. The bullpen would be more successful with a solid, healthy starting rotation. Forcing the bullpen to pitch as much as they have will end their season sooner than fans and the team want. With the offense as solid as it is, the organization and the fans deserve pitching that is just as solid.  Everyone is looking at Mahle and Montas, so the Twins and the fans need to be ready to wheel and deal. 
    What do you think the Twins should do about pitching? Are you willing to trade your favorite player? Who are other pitchers you think the Twins should look at getting before the deadline? 
     
     

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  15. Like
    Sherry Cerny got a reaction from glunn in Twins 6, Rays 5: Arraez Slam Leads Twins over Rays   
    No Buxton. No Correa. No Urshela. But Luis Arraez, the best hitter right now in baseball, was still in the lineup and provided the power. Chi Chi Gonzalez was promoted for his second start of the season, it was likely to be a bullpen-heavy game. The Twins faced Shane Baz, making his first start of the season after being on the IL all season.
    Box Score
    SP: Chi Chi Gonzalez: 4 IP, 8 H, 3R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 3 K (67 pitches, 46 strikes (68.6%))
    Home Runs:  Luis Arraez (Grand Slam) (3), 
    Top 3 WPA: Luis Arraez (.265), Jorge Polanco (.133), Jhoan Duran (.117)
    Win Probability Chart (via FanGraphs)

    The Rays wasted no time getting ahead of Chi Chi Gonzalez and the Twins with three runs in the first inning. . 
    Gonzalez on Friday triggered a minor-league opt-out with the Twins forcing their hand to decide if they will keep the pitcher on the Major League roster or release him. Gonzalez has only one game in the Majors with the Twins, against the Blue Jays where he allowed three runs in three innings before being pulled. The Twins won that game 9-3. 
    Gonzalez got out of the subsequent innings in a quick 1, 2, 3 fashion not allowing more runs during his four complete innings in the game before turning it over to the Bullpen at the top of the fifth.
    Where the Twins were not getting hits initially in the game, they capitalized on the Rays' mistakes.  In the second inning, Kevin Keirmaier slid past second base followed by Randy Arozarena the next inning who got picked off at first base after attempting to take second base during a fly-out from Ji-Man Choi. Gonzalez settled down and settled into a rhythm to continue the game.  The lineup for the game was something that felt a little like spring training. Carlos Correa and Byron Buxton were resting today giving the Twins game a small-ball feel as they started piecing runs together in the third inning. First, Gilberto Celestino got on first base. He took advantage of a wild pitch advancing to second base, while Gordon and Jeffers were walked as Baz struggled to maintain control of the strike zone, bringing up Arraez to bat and hitting a 403-foot grand slam, his first-ever, into the right-field seats to give the Twins a 4-3 lead. Arraez raised his batting average up to .369 after his hit in the sixth inning, going 3-for-5 on the day.
    As odd as the lineup seemed, it worked.
    Audra Martin shared on the broadcast that during an interview with Rocco Baldelli before the game about resting both Carlos Correa and Byron Buxton on the same day.   The Rays had used six pitchers by the sixth inning and the Twins took advantage of the rotating door of pitchers. Aside from Luis Arraez, Gilbert Celestino, Jorge Polanco and Ryan Jeffers had strong days at the plate. All three players were crucial in the success of today's outcome as they took turns bringing each other home in the third and sixth innings. Jeffers recently broke out of a 0-21 slump in the series against the Yankees and has continued to make contact with every at-bat.  The Rays made an attempt to come back, but the Twins bullpen was on fire and managed to keep the Rays from garnering any more runs. 
    Do you think the Twins should keep Chi Chi Gonzalez, or DFA him and put the decision back in the veteran's hands? Well, they quickly made their decision. Minutes after the game, it was announced. 
    What’s Next? 
    The Twins finish out their series with Tampa Bay before another series with the Mariners. Pitching matchups for Sunday: 
    1:05: Cole Sands (0-2, 8.49 ERA) vs LHP Jeffrey Springs (2-2, 1.62 ERA)  Postgame Interview 
     
     
    Bullpen Usage Spreadsheet


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  16. Like
    Sherry Cerny got a reaction from LewFordLives in Twins 3, Royals 7: The Twins Lose That Loving Feeling...and to the Royals   
    Top Gun Day at Target field brought a need for speed, and a win, but the Royals got on the board early, while the Twins struggled to find a rhythm. 
    Box Score
    SP:Chris Archer 4 IP, 5 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 1 K (78 pitches, 50 strikes (64.1%))
    Home Runs:  Trevor Larnach (2)

    Top 3 WPA: Trevor Larnach (.153), Ryan Jeffers (.104), Byron Buxton (.08)
    Bottom 3 WPA: Chris Archer (-.334), Jorge Polanco (-.109), Gio Urshela (-.103)
    Win Probability Chart (via FanGraphs)

    He Was Inverted
    Chris Archer started out the first inning by attacking the strike zone and the Royals took advantage of that and got the first run of the game. Archer’s control has continued to trend upward as he settles into the club. Archer, who has been limited on innings because of having no spring training and pitching very little overall the past two seasons, has really continued to improve as he’s stretched out.
    He had an ERA of 3.86 prior to today’s game, but it doesn’t tell the whole story. Archer has kept his pitching consistent with each performance and the only thing hurting his ERA up until now is his only registered loss, which came against Houston, but all of the Twins' pitchers struggled that series.
    Archer has not been allowed to go past four innings all season and today we saw why. By the fourth inning, Archer seemed to lose a little of the command he had in the second and third innings and gave up a run before Wes Johnson made a visit to the mound. After the visit, Archer gave up another two runs before getting the third out which was the 28th pitch of the inning. A Jorge Polanco error could have been the third out. Instead, it was followed by a two-run double. 
    Dick Bremer and LaTroy Hawkins both talked about how Twins manager Rocco Baldelli has been taking his time with the RHP who has spent a lot of time in the past three years injured and only pitched 19 ¾ innings last season.  As much as Archer wants to go out and bring the heat full send, the plan that Rocco has him on to help him stretch out and work on his command has proven that not only does Baldelli know what his team needs, but what it is going to take to be competitive. 
    "Remember, Boys, no points for Second Place"
    The Twins may have lost the game, but they still have the chance to tie the series on Sunday. The first hit of the game looked promising as Byron Buxton ran out a double with his first at-bat of the day as he poked a ball out to right field. Frustratingly Luis Arraez and Carlos Correa left him stranded, but Trevor Larnach answered the Royals with a home run deep to center field. Larnach has had two home runs for the season, both within the past two series and since returning from the IL.  It seemed like every time there was a glimmer of hope, there was a sigh of frustration. 
    The Twins have only started out behind in 17 of the 46 games they have played so far this season. In the other 29 games, they scored first and in 24 of those, they won. The Twins certainly did have quiet bats Saturday against Kansas City’s pitchers. There have been a lot of moves lately with injuries, COVID and giving players rest. Baldelli mentioned prior to the game today that even with all the moves lately, the guys continue to stay ready, work hard and show up when they need to. 
    A lot of the guys have not had much rest so far this season. Max Kepler, who has been amazing this season both in the field and at the plate, seemed to gingerly run to first base and left the game with right leg tightness. Kyle Garlick came in for Kepler. While the bats seemed to pick up a small amount in the sixth inning with a hit from Arraez and Garlick following up with a single advancing Arraez to third, the Royals pulled Brady Singer to preserve their lead.
    Larnach continued to battle at every at-bat and drew a walk against pitcher Dylan Coleman, helping to load the bases for Ryan Jeffers, who came in for Gary Sanchez, who left the game with a heat-related illness in between innings. Jeffers wasted no time in helping get the guys back on the board and hit a line drive up the middle scoring Arraez and Garlick before ending the inning bringing the Twins to only a two-run deficit with plenty of game left. 
    The Twins looked like they were making a comeback in the ninth inning with Luis Arraez getting his third hit of the day, followed by Correa getting on base. Polanco came up to bat, hitless the entire game made Josh Staumont work his count, and drew a walk bringing Garlick up to hit with bases loaded and two outs and the fans to their feet. Garlick hit a beautiful fly ball to centerfield but was just short, ending the game 7-3. 
    What’s Next? 
    The Twins finish out their series with the Royals tomorrow at 1:10pm before flying off to play in Detroit.

    Pitching matchup tomorrow: 
    Sunday 1:10 pm CST: Sonny Gray (21-1, 2.60 ERA) vs RHP Zack Grienke (0-3, 4.53 ERA)  Postgame Interviews 
     
     
    Bullpen Usage Spreadsheet
      TUE WED THU FRI SAT TOT               Minaya 41 0 0 0 31 72 Moran 31 0 0 0 34 65 Duffey 12 0 31 0 20 63 Megill 0 8 0 26 0 34 Duran 14 0 0 19 0 33 Thielbar 0 30 0 1 0 31 Pagán 0 21 0 3 0 24 Jax 0 23 0 0 0 23 Smith 0 3 0 18 0 21  

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  17. Like
    Sherry Cerny got a reaction from glunn in Josh Winder to the Starting Rotation: A "Smooth" Transition   
    To be honest, just when I think I have the pitching figured out, they change it. I know that Josh is super flexible in his rotation - whatever Rocco wants - but I would like to think that "yes", that's what they are doing...but.
  18. Like
    Sherry Cerny got a reaction from glunn in Josh Winder to the Starting Rotation: A "Smooth" Transition   
    THANK YOU!!!!! this really means more than you know.
  19. Like
    Sherry Cerny got a reaction from Richie the Rally Goat in Josh Winder to the Starting Rotation: A "Smooth" Transition   
    THANK YOU!!!!! this really means more than you know.
  20. Like
    Sherry Cerny got a reaction from Richie the Rally Goat in Josh Winder to the Starting Rotation: A "Smooth" Transition   
    To be honest, just when I think I have the pitching figured out, they change it. I know that Josh is super flexible in his rotation - whatever Rocco wants - but I would like to think that "yes", that's what they are doing...but.
  21. Like
    Sherry Cerny got a reaction from RJA in Josh Winder to the Starting Rotation: A "Smooth" Transition   
    Thank you so much, talking with his mom was the highlight of my week. she's amazing.  he has a great family! 
  22. Like
    Sherry Cerny reacted to RJA in Josh Winder to the Starting Rotation: A "Smooth" Transition   
    Great article, Sherry.  I am sure the wiffle ball story brings back memories for a lot of us!  I agree that this kid can be special.  My hope is the Twins put him in the rotation and let him start on a regular basis.  I am confident he will do well and get even better as the season progresses. I think switching from starting to relieving would not do him any favors.  It may take a village to raise a child, but it takes a family to raise a MLB player!  It sounds like he has a fabulous family.  I am happy for all of them.
  23. Like
    Sherry Cerny reacted to Linus in Josh Winder to the Starting Rotation: A "Smooth" Transition   
    Whoa. Let’s let him pitch a bit before we declare him master predator or whatever. 
  24. Like
    Sherry Cerny reacted to glunn in Josh Winder to the Starting Rotation: A "Smooth" Transition   
    That is a VERY comprehensive and well written article about Winder. Nice work.
  25. Like
    Sherry Cerny got a reaction from glunn in Josh Winder to the Starting Rotation: A "Smooth" Transition   
    Josh Winder is a solid pitcher. His talent and discipline make him a predator on the mound, taking down his opponents and making it look easy. He has been preparing for being a starter since he was a young travel ball pitcher. With the news that Chris Paddack is out for the remainder of the season, Winder may just be the pitcher for the job.
    For the first time in spring training of 2022, fans saw Josh Winder take the mound unless you've been following on milb.tv in recent years. The 6'5" right-handed pitcher calmly, quietly, struck out hitter after hitter. Like a lion stalking prey, he studied his opponents in the batter's box, and then with a quick snap of his wrist, he threw a nasty slider to get his opponent out. After each strikeout, he circles the mound in true predatory fashion getting ready for his next ambush. 
    Josh Winder strikes out two | 04/05/2022 | Minnesota Twins (mlb.com)
    When the Twins made the 28-man roster announcement, I was delighted and somewhat surprised. But it was no surprise and no shock for people in his life. 
    Young Prodigy
    Josh Winder's baseball career has been pushing the boundaries over his entire life, which is probably why the coaching staff at VMI started recruiting him, and the Twins started scouting him, so early in their respective times. Winder started playing travel ball for the Prince George Swamp Things out of Prince George, Virginia, where his coaches saw early in his pre-teen years that he would be going places. His head coach at VMI, John Hadra saw him growing up playing on the fields of VMI, "Josh just had a natural talent. He had the ability to hone in on the strike zone".
    Leslie Winder, Josh's mom, said "Well, of course, as his parents, we knew that college was a possibility, but at that time, we weren't thinking of him playing past that."
    As he got older Leslie and Lee Winder started to see what the coaches saw. While playing travel ball, Winder would sometimes play up on the same team with older brother Gregory. Playing up a level provided Winder a chance to be challenged and grow in his discipline. His siblings always allowed him to be competitive.
    Leslie tells me that the kids had a great relationship; they all got along, but when it came to games and Wiffle Ball in the front yard, she would have to go outside to quiet the yelling from the "players" for not taking their outs, trying to steal a base or bending the rules. She said, "When they played Wiffle ball, they were playing for the World Series every time they played." 
    The competitive nature in Wiffle ball stuck with Winder as he grew in baseball. His college coach Jon Hadra said that Josh is highly competitive, he wants to win, and he will do whatever is asked of him to help not only get his team a win but also improve. "Josh is competitive," Coach Hadra states in our interview, "but he is competitive internally. He takes things personally. If he has a bad inning or rough outing, he gets frustrated with himself, never the defense". 
    Coach Hadra said that Winder never got angry or upset externally; he would work harder. He is a good leader, the other guys looked to him for leadership, and he didn't even have to say anything; he would show leadership. Josh's strong leadership and presence make him an asset to the game of baseball and the team that he is on. 
    Winder's talent and ability to throw strikes make him an above-average rookie. He doesn't just throw the baseball; he takes the temperature of the man he is facing, taking a moment to decide what to do next. Winder has excellent control of the mound. He is not just a thrower; he is a pitcher. There are pitchers, throwers, and Winder's arm and delivery make him an outstanding pitcher and a menace on the mound. 
    Winder is so good, he began the year at the Minnesota Twins AA affiliate Wichita in 2019 and in 10 starts for the Wind Surge went 3-0 with a 1.98 ERA, 65 strikeouts and just 10 walks over 54.2 innings. Winder was promoted to Class AAA St. Paul in late June and has a 3.52 ERA and a 1-0 record in two starts. He began the season as the Twins #12 ranked prospect by MLB.com.  
    Even with missing a season in 2020 and the lockout in early 2022 he didn't miss a beat. "He continued to work out every day", says his mom, "He wasn't worried about it, or if he was, he certainly didn't show it. He came home and lived with his friends who continued to work with him. He worked out, threw and focused on being ready for whenever baseball would be back. He never got out of routine, or out of shape". 
    Winder knows the importance of being ready at a moment's notice, like a lot of other players who weren't sure if they would play again, he took the opportunity to work hard and improve, making him even more of a threat on the mound. It's no wonder he only played three seasons in the minors.
    Winder makes hitters work. Some hitters can make a pitcher's pitch count rise, but Winder stays low in the count as he works through a game, making hitters chase, get tired, second guess their swings, and strike out before they even know what's going on. His junior high friends said he was so smooth when he pitched, he was stuck with the nickname “smooth” - because that’s what he is when he pitches. 
    Natural Born Leader
    Josh doesn't say a lot, to himself, or anyone else really when he is on the mound. He is working and he has a job to do and that job requires focus. He learned that early on. When he was drafted in 2018, he left one semester of college behind him, but knowing how important that component was to his success, he came back later that fall to finish his degree. 
    Coach Hadra says, "Josh is a good leader, a strong leader. He doesn't say much, you know? He doesn't have words of wisdom, or 'try this', he shows guys what makes him successful and they follow suit," He went on to tell me that, "when Josh came back to finish his semester after being drafted, he came to the field frequently to help players. They would get so excited because he was spending time with them, talking to them about his experiences and what made him successful. Those guys, who are now getting ready to graduate are doing the same thing, he is left an imprint, that is affecting the program in a generational capacity".
    This is exactly what the Twins need on the mound, someone who is a leader, who can set the tone for years to come. He may be a rookie, but as Josh's mom points out, "he's an old soul". He is routine, strict in his time management and is willing to listen to learn and to pass on whatever he is taught. 
    His family dynamic is another part of his leadership. No matter how busy the rookie pitcher and his family are, they always make time for each other. His mom talks about how often they text, or when he calls home after a game. They also have weekly zoom calls with family that include Grandpa, who sometimes struggles with technology, but is quick to pull up an article on Twins Daily (thanks, Grandpa!).
    Family is a huge component to his success and something that is important to Winder off and on the field, and with the Twins going through constant transitions, leadership is something that would benefit everyone. It's been awhile since the pitching staff can say there has been one leader in the bullpen, and Winder may fit that role well. 
    A leader never asks someone to do what they can't, even if they don't want to, adversity makes players (and people) who they are and one thing that Winder is not afraid of is adversity. 
    Able to make it through transition
    When Coach Hadra first saw Winder at a young age, he came across him throwing bullpen, but he quickly noticed that as Winder grew, he was a starter. That is not always an option in the big leagues and his bullpen lessons aided him as he made his debut as a Twins pitcher.
    Coach Hadra told me that Josh has always been a starter, but when it comes to the team, Winder will do anything he can to get his team a win.
    He came in as a long reliever before his May 1 start with the Twins, which he had never had to do before. During his first three games as a long reliever, Winder got a chance to see how different that was for him to "be ready" to play at any time. The mentality to switch from working from a starting position to being ready to take over as a long reliever is very difficult for a pitcher. If they are used to a routine by starting, that can affect the pitcher’s game. That did not stop the predatory mentality from the mound from the rookie pitcher. Ready isn’t a thing in the majors, if Skip tells you you’re playing, you go. 
    His relief appearances leave room for growth compared to his starting appearances,  Winder showed not only the Twins but also the Dodgers who he is and why they should be ready when he's on the mound with his MLB debut.
    Winder came in to relieve Chris Archer in the fifth inning, and the line-up that he was coming into was no joke. Winder started his debut by striking out Will Smith, walking Cody Bellinger and Chris Taylor. When Gavin Lux came up to hit, Cody Bellinger ran on Winder to steal second. 
    "Okay, I will never do that again," Leslie Winder said as she talked about his first inning as a Twin, "He is used to watching from the dugout, not the bullpen. He watches the hitters and analyzes them. This was different for him and he knew as soon as Bellinger stole second, that letting his eye off of him was a big mistake. But, it was a learning mistake and Josh, he catches on quickly.".
    That is how he has approached his baseball career, taking each play and player and learning from it—continuing to analyze his prey and knowing how next time: how to be more aware, more stealthy, more elusive in his pitching, and ready for his next attack. 
    His relief games with Houston and the Athletics was the most we have seen the pitcher struggle this season, but even then he controlled his emotions and his arm. He documented his first losses of the season, but still managed to strike out players and maintain a low ERA. While he doesn't shine as a reliever, there is only one way to get better and that's putting him in every chance they get. 
    The more he sees, the better he will get. Compared to other starters in the rotation, he is just as reliable to control games, especially with the defense behind him. Being a long reliever is not where Winder will be successful for the Twins, he certainly makes it work in a pinch, but where he will be the biggest asset is in the starting lineup.
    Winder is hungry; his drive for perfection and success is evident when he gets on the mound. While he prefers to start a game, Winder does recognize that being put into the games to be a long reliever gives him a different vantage point. This different vantage point got him ready for his first official start on May 1, which was anything but short of amazing. 
    Mound Command
    When he was younger and even now, Winder has a great command of the mound. During college he had health issues his junior year, giving him a struggle off and on, but his numbers and his attitude would never let you know. 
    On April 13, 2018, Winder had a season high 11 strikes to get the win versus Western Carolina. He also, finished his career at VMI with the top K/9 mark in school history, second in BB/9, tied for third in wins, second in strikeouts, and fourth in both games started and innings pitched. 
    In his first start against Tampa Bay, Winder pitched six innings, had seven strikes, and only allowed two hits and one walk. A smiling Winder was excited to not only share his experience.
    By the time the second start came around, he was able to use his five-day routine to prepare for the game and he counted his second win (in a week) as a rookie pitcher. During his post-game interview after his second start, after going six scoreless innings, a journalist inquired if he was ready or surprised to start that day. Winder replied, "I knew I would be starting, and I had to fly to meet the team, so I was in bed by 10:30 pm the night before to get lots of rest".
    When Winder is getting ready for a start, he has a five-day routine to get him ready, and he does not use his phone on game days at all. He also calls his dad after every game. His ability to be called into any situation shows he is a solid component of the team and dangerous to anyone in the batter's box.
    Ready to Set Records
    So far this season, Winder has started three times winning two and losing one. He relies heavily on his four-seam fastball and slider, which are as fast as they are nasty. His fastball sits at about 94mph and if he really wants to make a hitter work, he will use a curveball to throw them off dropping the speed down to roughly 80 mph and make them chase. Winder is the fourth pitcher since 1913, with zero errors and over seven strikeouts in his first two starts. 
    In 2021 he was a part of the Futures American League Team as part of All-Star Week. The Futures game is for the top prospects across MLB. 
    The defense that Winder gets to work with is one of the best in the league, even if news outlets won't say it, he is not afraid to. Players like Carlos Correa, Byron Buxton, Jorge Polanco, and Luis Arraez round out his support if a ball gets hit into play. There is no doubt that there are great tools around the already outstanding pitcher. He also has strong chemistry with both Gary Sanchez and Ryan Jeffers.
    The season is still early. There is no doubt that as Winder continues on this journey, there will be losses, errors, and rough starts, but no more than what the starting rotation has been through. Winder may give Joe Ryan a run for becoming the Twins rookie pitcher of the year. 
     

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