Game Recap #55: Unclutch Batters 2, Beer Makers 6

It's tempting to blame the offense for this one, and on one level that's true.  You're not going to win very many games scoring just two runs.  On the other hand, the Twins had twelve hits, three of them doubles, and drew two walks.  It's not easy to get fourteen baserunners and score only twice, especially when three of the baserunners put themselves into scoring position.

This would, of course, lead easily into a discussion of clutch hitting and its importance, except that discussion has been had numerous times and I don't know how to add anything to it.  I'll just make a prediction that if the Twins can keep getting fourteen baserunners every game, they will, on average, score more than two runs.

Gibson wasn't great, but he wasn't terrible, either.  With better luck and better defense, he might have given up two or three runs rather than four.  He kept them in the game for six innings.  I really think the whole home/road split for Gibson is a product of small sample size.  He had a few really bad outings, and they happened to be on the road.  That happens sometimes.  But he's had a couple of really good games on the road, too.  As long as the Twins don't start harping on it, so that it gets in his head, I don't think it's anything to worry about.

We once again saw Santana in center field.  I didn't have time to check whether this is developing into a platoon arrangement or if this just Gardy being Gardy and going with his gut.  If it is a platoon, though, it means Santana is going to get most of the at-bats.

I can certainly see why you don't want Hicks in the lineup on offense, but age twenty-three is awfully young to be riding the bench.  Again, you get better at baseball by playing baseball.  If you're going to give Santana the bulk of the playing time anyway, then send Hicks to Rochester and make Santana the centerfielder.  Yes, Santana will make plenty of mistakes--it's tough to learn a new position in the big leagues--but if that's your decision then you understand that living with mistakes is part of it.  He'll learn, eventually.  Let Hicks go to Rochester and learn how to hit.  Maybe he can do that and maybe he can't, but he's not going to learn to hit while sitting on the bench.

So tonight we move to game two of this odd four-game series.  Samuel Deduno and His Magical Zoomball go against Yovani Gallardo, who started the season very well but has struggled some more recently.  Let's get those fourteen baserunners, guys, and let's turn them into more than two runs!  Tonight we start our season-ending one hundred seven-game winning streak!  We'll just have to settle for 133-29!

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