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  1. The Twins eked out a 3-0 win over Cleveland on Tuesday. John Gant continued his steady improvement in a starting pitching role, the bullpen was outstanding, and Brent Rooker homered for Minnesota. Box Score Starting Pitcher: Gant 5.0 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 4 BB, 7 K Homeruns: Rooker (11) Top 3 WPA: Gant .300, Simmons .135, Thielbar .098 Win Probability Chart (via FanGraphs) The Twins looked to build on their Labor Day win over Cleveland on Tuesday. They sent John Gant to the mound to face Aaron Civale, who returned from the IL to provide a boost to a beleaguered Cleveland rotation. Here’s how the Twins lined up for the game. Gant, fighting for 2022 rotation consideration, got off to a solid start. He threw two clean innings, working particularly effectively with his changeup and generating extra ride on his fastball, before running into trouble in the third inning. After getting a double play, Gant surrendered two singles and a walk to load the bases. Franmil Reyes missed a grand slam by five feet to keep the game tied, flying out to deep center field. Meanwhile through three innings, Civale showed no signs of rust. Other than giving up singles to Josh Donaldson and Miguel Sano, he looked highly effective. Civale worked consistently up in the strike zone, throwing a wide variety of breaking balls keeping Twins hitters off balance, and off the bases. Gant returned for a more efficient and effective fourth inning. Despite walking three through four innings, Gant generated nine swings and misses and four strikeouts in as many innings. Is Gant working himself into consideration for a job with the Twins in 2022? The deadlock was finally broken in the sixth inning. After Max Kepler drew a walk to lead off the inning, Andrelton Simmons singled up the middle to drive home Kepler, give the Twins a one to nothing lead, and force Civale from the game. A walk to Luis Arraez put runners on first and second with two out, but Byron Buxton flew out to shallow center field to end the inning one to nothing in favor of the Twins. After walking the leadoff hitter in the fifth inning, Gant returned to strike out the side. He completed five inning, struck out seven batters, and generated twelve swings and misses. Despite walking four Cleveland hitters, Gant has improved noticeably in each of his starts with the Twins. Gant will be an interesting sub-plot to monitor in the remaining four weeks of the season. Jorge Alcala relieved Gant in the sixth inning. He got Franmil Reyes swinging on a beautiful sinking fastball at 97mph. He followed up with back to back ground-outs, preserving the Twins one run lead heading to the seventh inning. In the seventh inning, Brent Rooker crushed a home run to right center field to increase the lead to two. Juan Minaya pitched a scoreless bottom of the seventh, striking out two, to preserve the Twins lead. An infield single and an Oscar Mercado double high off the left-field wall created a threat for Cleveland in the eighth inning. With runners on second and third and two out, Yu Chang struck out swinging to take the game to the ninth inning. Luis Arraez tripled home Andrelton Simmons to extend the lead to three to nothing in the ninth. Alexander Colome entered to close the game for the Twins. Owen Miller grounded out, before Amed Rosario singled on a fly ball to center field. A Miles Straw flyout and a Bobby Bradley strikeout brought the Twins their third consecutive win. Bullpen Usage Chart THU FRI SAT SUN MON TUE TOT Colomé 0 0 11 23 9 17 60 Thielbar 0 0 0 28 0 25 53 Minaya 0 0 21 0 0 21 42 Alcalá 0 0 0 15 0 19 34 Garza Jr. 0 8 23 0 0 0 31 Duffey 0 0 0 10 8 0 18 Coulombe 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 Next Up On Wednesday, the Twins continue their series with Cleveland. Joe Ryan will take on Triston McKenzie. First pitch is at 5:10 CST. Postgame Interviews View full article
  2. Minnesota Twins starting pitcher John Gant delivered five scoreless innings against Cleveland Tuesday night and struck out seven batters. Down on the farm, Matt Wallner was the headliner with a three-hit night that included a grand slam. Also featured in tonight's recap are Josh Donaldson, Brent Rooker, Luis Arraez, Jose Miranda, Gilberto Celestino, Mark Contreras, Austin Martin, Edouard Julien and Christian Encarnacion-Strand.
  3. Minnesota Twins starting pitcher John Gant delivered five scoreless innings against Cleveland Tuesday night and struck out seven batters. Down on the farm, Matt Wallner was the headliner with a three-hit night that included a grand slam. Also featured in tonight's recap are Josh Donaldson, Brent Rooker, Luis Arraez, Jose Miranda, Gilberto Celestino, Mark Contreras, Austin Martin, Edouard Julien and Christian Encarnacion-Strand. View full video
  4. Box Score Starting Pitcher: Gant 5.0 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 4 BB, 7 K Homeruns: Rooker (11) Top 3 WPA: Gant .300, Simmons .135, Thielbar .098 Win Probability Chart (via FanGraphs) The Twins looked to build on their Labor Day win over Cleveland on Tuesday. They sent John Gant to the mound to face Aaron Civale, who returned from the IL to provide a boost to a beleaguered Cleveland rotation. Here’s how the Twins lined up for the game. Gant, fighting for 2022 rotation consideration, got off to a solid start. He threw two clean innings, working particularly effectively with his changeup and generating extra ride on his fastball, before running into trouble in the third inning. After getting a double play, Gant surrendered two singles and a walk to load the bases. Franmil Reyes missed a grand slam by five feet to keep the game tied, flying out to deep center field. Meanwhile through three innings, Civale showed no signs of rust. Other than giving up singles to Josh Donaldson and Miguel Sano, he looked highly effective. Civale worked consistently up in the strike zone, throwing a wide variety of breaking balls keeping Twins hitters off balance, and off the bases. Gant returned for a more efficient and effective fourth inning. Despite walking three through four innings, Gant generated nine swings and misses and four strikeouts in as many innings. Is Gant working himself into consideration for a job with the Twins in 2022? The deadlock was finally broken in the sixth inning. After Max Kepler drew a walk to lead off the inning, Andrelton Simmons singled up the middle to drive home Kepler, give the Twins a one to nothing lead, and force Civale from the game. A walk to Luis Arraez put runners on first and second with two out, but Byron Buxton flew out to shallow center field to end the inning one to nothing in favor of the Twins. After walking the leadoff hitter in the fifth inning, Gant returned to strike out the side. He completed five inning, struck out seven batters, and generated twelve swings and misses. Despite walking four Cleveland hitters, Gant has improved noticeably in each of his starts with the Twins. Gant will be an interesting sub-plot to monitor in the remaining four weeks of the season. Jorge Alcala relieved Gant in the sixth inning. He got Franmil Reyes swinging on a beautiful sinking fastball at 97mph. He followed up with back to back ground-outs, preserving the Twins one run lead heading to the seventh inning. In the seventh inning, Brent Rooker crushed a home run to right center field to increase the lead to two. Juan Minaya pitched a scoreless bottom of the seventh, striking out two, to preserve the Twins lead. An infield single and an Oscar Mercado double high off the left-field wall created a threat for Cleveland in the eighth inning. With runners on second and third and two out, Yu Chang struck out swinging to take the game to the ninth inning. Luis Arraez tripled home Andrelton Simmons to extend the lead to three to nothing in the ninth. Alexander Colome entered to close the game for the Twins. Owen Miller grounded out, before Amed Rosario singled on a fly ball to center field. A Miles Straw flyout and a Bobby Bradley strikeout brought the Twins their third consecutive win. Bullpen Usage Chart THU FRI SAT SUN MON TUE TOT Colomé 0 0 11 23 9 17 60 Thielbar 0 0 0 28 0 25 53 Minaya 0 0 21 0 0 21 42 Alcalá 0 0 0 15 0 19 34 Garza Jr. 0 8 23 0 0 0 31 Duffey 0 0 0 10 8 0 18 Coulombe 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 Next Up On Wednesday, the Twins continue their series with Cleveland. Joe Ryan will take on Triston McKenzie. First pitch is at 5:10 CST. Postgame Interviews
  5. A great pitching performance was not enough. The Twins offense wasted too many opportunities to score, despite producing a lot of baserunners. The Cubs, making their first trip to Target Field in six years, take game one of the interleague series. Box Score John Gant: 5.0 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 5 K (64% strikes) Home Runs: None Bottom 3 WPA: Kepler -.209, Buxton -.148, Simmons -.144 Win Probability Chart (via FanGraphs) Each team scored a run in the first inning. John Gant, who’s trying to make a case for himself to be a part of the 2022 starting rotation, nearly had an uneventful top of the first. Standing in the way was Frank Schwindel, who jumped on the first pitch he saw to make it 1-0 Cubs. But that lead didn’t last long. Luis Arraez opened up the bottom of the inning with a leadoff double, snapping an 0-for-16 slump. Byron Buxton followed up with a single to move Arraez to third, and Jorge Polanco pushed him across with a sac-fly, tying the game. Since we mentioned Buxton, get a load of what he did during the second inning: The Cubs still managed to score their leadoff runner that same inning, after Robinson Chirinos hit a blast to center field and Brent Rooker couldn’t field it at the warning track. The ball apparently hit him on the leg and rolled away from Buxton. Matt Duffy scored, and Chirinos reached third very easily, giving Chicago back the lead. Minnesota threatened again, in the bottom half, with men in the corners with no outs. But this time, they ended up empty-handed. After a busy first couple of innings, both pitchers settled down and dominated opposing pitchers. Gant finished off his start with a perfect second time through the order – three consecutive 1-2-3 innings. He didn’t walk a single batter all night. Unfortunately for the Twins, Cubs starter Zach Davies also put away nine batters in a row, starting in the second inning. It was not until the fifth that the Twins would have baserunners again. Both of them ended up being stranded. Juan Minaya came in relief of Gant and faced the minimum in the sixth. However, he couldn’t keep up the good work during the seventh when he loaded the bases with no outs, forcing Rocco Baldelli to pull him from the game. Tyler Duffey took the mound and did a fantastic job, striking out the side on 16 pitches. This was the first time since May 29 (third overall) that Duffey pitched at least one scoreless inning with three strikeouts. With his outing tonight, he posted a 2.25 ERA in August. Meanwhile, the offense kept struggling against Cubs pitching. They stranded a pair of runners in the bottom of the seventh, at which point they had accumulated five men left on base and were 1-for-7 with men in scoring position. Chicago’s offense, on the other hand, extended their lead in the eighth, with Ian Happ hitting a monstrous third deck home run to left, which gave the Cubs a two-run lead, 3-1. The Twins tried to start a rally during the eighth, loading the bases with singles by Arraez and Polanco, and a walk by Donaldson. With only one out, Max Kepler hit a bloop to shallow right, and Arraez decided to tag up, but Duffy made a perfect throw home to get him, giving Chicago an inning-ending double play. Ralph Garza Jr. kept Minnesota’s hopes alive by pitching a scoreless ninth, but the offense went down in order in the bottom half. Despite losing tonight, the Twins still end up August with a winning record (14-13), the first time this has happened this season. They face the games again this Wednesday (9/1), at 7:10 pm CT, with Joe Ryan set to make his big-league debut. Check out Tom Froemming's video recap of tonight's Twins action! Postgame Interview Bullpen Usage Spreadsheet FRI SAT SUN MON TUE TOT Albers 88 0 0 0 0 88 Colomé 13 13 0 23 0 49 Thielbar 0 23 0 0 26 49 Minaya 0 17 0 0 24 41 Alcalá 12 0 0 25 0 37 Gibaut 0 0 33 0 0 33 Garza Jr. 0 0 11 0 17 28 Duffey 6 0 0 0 16 22 Coulombe 20 0 0 0 0 20 View full article
  6. Box Score John Gant: 5.0 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 5 K (64% strikes) Home Runs: None Bottom 3 WPA: Kepler -.209, Buxton -.148, Simmons -.144 Win Probability Chart (via FanGraphs) Each team scored a run in the first inning. John Gant, who’s trying to make a case for himself to be a part of the 2022 starting rotation, nearly had an uneventful top of the first. Standing in the way was Frank Schwindel, who jumped on the first pitch he saw to make it 1-0 Cubs. But that lead didn’t last long. Luis Arraez opened up the bottom of the inning with a leadoff double, snapping an 0-for-16 slump. Byron Buxton followed up with a single to move Arraez to third, and Jorge Polanco pushed him across with a sac-fly, tying the game. Since we mentioned Buxton, get a load of what he did during the second inning: The Cubs still managed to score their leadoff runner that same inning, after Robinson Chirinos hit a blast to center field and Brent Rooker couldn’t field it at the warning track. The ball apparently hit him on the leg and rolled away from Buxton. Matt Duffy scored, and Chirinos reached third very easily, giving Chicago back the lead. Minnesota threatened again, in the bottom half, with men in the corners with no outs. But this time, they ended up empty-handed. After a busy first couple of innings, both pitchers settled down and dominated opposing pitchers. Gant finished off his start with a perfect second time through the order – three consecutive 1-2-3 innings. He didn’t walk a single batter all night. Unfortunately for the Twins, Cubs starter Zach Davies also put away nine batters in a row, starting in the second inning. It was not until the fifth that the Twins would have baserunners again. Both of them ended up being stranded. Juan Minaya came in relief of Gant and faced the minimum in the sixth. However, he couldn’t keep up the good work during the seventh when he loaded the bases with no outs, forcing Rocco Baldelli to pull him from the game. Tyler Duffey took the mound and did a fantastic job, striking out the side on 16 pitches. This was the first time since May 29 (third overall) that Duffey pitched at least one scoreless inning with three strikeouts. With his outing tonight, he posted a 2.25 ERA in August. Meanwhile, the offense kept struggling against Cubs pitching. They stranded a pair of runners in the bottom of the seventh, at which point they had accumulated five men left on base and were 1-for-7 with men in scoring position. Chicago’s offense, on the other hand, extended their lead in the eighth, with Ian Happ hitting a monstrous third deck home run to left, which gave the Cubs a two-run lead, 3-1. The Twins tried to start a rally during the eighth, loading the bases with singles by Arraez and Polanco, and a walk by Donaldson. With only one out, Max Kepler hit a bloop to shallow right, and Arraez decided to tag up, but Duffy made a perfect throw home to get him, giving Chicago an inning-ending double play. Ralph Garza Jr. kept Minnesota’s hopes alive by pitching a scoreless ninth, but the offense went down in order in the bottom half. Despite losing tonight, the Twins still end up August with a winning record (14-13), the first time this has happened this season. They face the games again this Wednesday (9/1), at 7:10 pm CT, with Joe Ryan set to make his big-league debut. Check out Tom Froemming's video recap of tonight's Twins action! Postgame Interview Bullpen Usage Spreadsheet FRI SAT SUN MON TUE TOT Albers 88 0 0 0 0 88 Colomé 13 13 0 23 0 49 Thielbar 0 23 0 0 26 49 Minaya 0 17 0 0 24 41 Alcalá 12 0 0 25 0 37 Gibaut 0 0 33 0 0 33 Garza Jr. 0 0 11 0 17 28 Duffey 6 0 0 0 16 22 Coulombe 20 0 0 0 0 20
  7. The Twins are in St. Louis, and J.A. Happ will have to move from the road clubhouse to the home clubhouse. John Gant will turn 29 next week. He was originally the 21st round pick of the Mets out of high school in Florida. He began the season in the Cardinals starting rotation but moved to the bullpen. He is 4-6 with a 3.42 ERA. In 76 1/3 innings, he has walked 56 and struck out 56. Hence, his WHIP is at 1.57. Lefty Evan Sisk went to the College of Charleston with Bailey Ober. This season, he has split time between High-A and Double-A. Overall, he has pitched in 26 games. He has a 3.31 ERA and a 1.59 WHIP. In 32 2/3 innings, he has 20 walks and 46 strikeouts. That is the type of player that can be acquired for the 38-year-old Happ. In his 15th MLB season, he is 5-6 with a 6.77 ERA and a 1.59 WHIP. In 98 1/3 innings, he has given up 125 hits, walked 21 and struck out 77 batters. He had a near no-hitter early in the season, but has really struggled. He leads MLB in allowing barrels. While Gant isn't a prospect - he's been in the big leagues as far back as 2016 - this is a lottery ticket for the rest of the season. Clearly Gant has control and command issues, but he's got decent stuff. Dan Hayes reports that the Twins acquired John Gant from St. Louis in exchange for LHP J.A. Happ. How do you feel about this trade?
  8. The Twins have an agreement to acquire St. Louis Cardinals pitcher John Gant and LHP prospect Evan Sisk in exchange for LHP J.A. Happ. The Twins are in St. Louis, and J.A. Happ will have to move from the road clubhouse to the home clubhouse. John Gant will turn 29 next week. He was originally the 21st round pick of the Mets out of high school in Florida. He began the season in the Cardinals starting rotation but moved to the bullpen. He is 4-6 with a 3.42 ERA. In 76 1/3 innings, he has walked 56 and struck out 56. Hence, his WHIP is at 1.57. Lefty Evan Sisk went to the College of Charleston with Bailey Ober. This season, he has split time between High-A and Double-A. Overall, he has pitched in 26 games. He has a 3.31 ERA and a 1.59 WHIP. In 32 2/3 innings, he has 20 walks and 46 strikeouts. That is the type of player that can be acquired for the 38-year-old Happ. In his 15th MLB season, he is 5-6 with a 6.77 ERA and a 1.59 WHIP. In 98 1/3 innings, he has given up 125 hits, walked 21 and struck out 77 batters. He had a near no-hitter early in the season, but has really struggled. He leads MLB in allowing barrels. While Gant isn't a prospect - he's been in the big leagues as far back as 2016 - this is a lottery ticket for the rest of the season. Clearly Gant has control and command issues, but he's got decent stuff. Dan Hayes reports that the Twins acquired John Gant from St. Louis in exchange for LHP J.A. Happ. How do you feel about this trade? View full article
  9. John Gant, RHP, 26-years-old St. Louis Cardinals (35-33 in NL Central) Three more years of team control via arbitration. 2019: 1.66 ERA, 0.74 WHIP, 8.53 K/9, 2.13 BB/9 in 38.0 IP 2018: 3.47 ERA, 1.30 WHIP, 7.50 4.50 K/9, BB/9 in 114.0 IP (19 games started) What’s to Like? He’s just under 27-years-old and could be with the team for three more years, which could turn out to be pretty valuable if his first 33 innings as a full-time reliever are any indication. With a 1.64 ERA his peripherals would obviously suggest the possibility for negative regression, but Gant has elite stuff that has been fooling hitters all year. https://twitter.com/PitchingNinja/status/1123405809499680771 Per Statcast, the movement of his changeup (23.9 percent usage), four seamer (23.1 percent), and curveball (11 percent) are all considered top 10 or better in the league. This leaves out his most oft used pitch, the sinker (33.1 percent), against which opposing hitters have a slugging percentage of .301 in 2019. Concerns I don’t mean to be overly optimistic, but there isn’t a lot to be concerned about here since he’s been so good. That said, some things to consider: given his age, contract situation, and success he’ll be more expensive than Oliver Perez and Craig Stammen, the move from the NL to the AL means he would be facing better hitting (primarily a DH instead of a pinch hitter), and as he gains more innings, hitters will have more of a scouting report on him. The concerns are really grasping at straws here. Gant would be a phenomenal add to our bullpen and would probably fit right into an eighth-inning role. See Also Alex Colome, RHP, White Sox Seth Lugo, RHP, Mets Greg Holland, RHP, Diamondbacks Sean Doolittle, LHP, Nationals Kirby Yates, RHP, Padres 10 Relievers Minnesota Could Target
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