This one hurt.
Even when the team is going nowhere, it still hurts to give away a game at the end. "Give away" is not really fair, because it's not like the Twins made a bunch of errors or walked a bunch of people and just handed the game to San Diego. Still, when you're ahead by a run going to the ninth and have your all-star closer coming into the game, you're supposed to win. When you don't, it hurts.
As we noted yesterday, Glen Perkins has been struggling lately. He'd managed to work his way out of it before, so it didn't hurt anything. He couldn't work his way out of it yesterday, and it cost the Twins a game. I know it's a small sample size, but in his last seven games (seven innings), the opposition has gone 11-for-29, or a batting average of 380. It doesn't seem like he's given up a bunch of bloopers and bleeders, either--most of the hits have been hit hard. This could be a fluke, but it seems more likely to me that there's a reason for it. I have no idea what the reason is--it could be physical, it could be mechanical, it could be faulty pitch selection as Cory and Dazzle suggested, it probably could be other things, too. But whatever it is, I hope it gets fixed soon.
Jordan Schafer played left field again, so apparently they did not acquire him to enable them to play Danny Santana at shortstop. It's still possible that he was acquired as the prelude to a trade of Josh Willingham, as no one is going to be persuaded to trade for Willingham by watching him play left field. I know this was a minor move, and maybe people are tired of reading about it, but even minor moves should be made for reasons, and I find it interesting to try to figure out what they are.
I've defended the signing of Kevin Correia on the ground that he has been pretty much what the Twins should've expected him to be: a mediocre pitcher.* I still think that's true, but we also have to recognize that, the way the Twins do things, there's another side to it., and that's this: when the Twins sign a mediocre player, they seem to feel obligated to continue to play that player as long as he remains in the general vicinity of mediocre. Meanwhile, young players who have a chance to be better than mediocre either sit the bench or remain in AAA.
*From dictionary.com: "mediocre: of only ordinary or moderate quality; neither good nor bad."
Kevin Correia, and Yohan Pino for that matter, are not bad pitchers. They've been mediocre, neither good nor bad. But because they've been mediocre, the Twins seem to think they need to keep using them. Meanwhile, Trevor May and Tommy Milone, who we hope are the future of the Twins, are busy trying to pitch the Rochester Red Wings into the playoffs because "there's just not a spot for them".
Again, it's not that these guys are awful. But Correia is 34 and Pino is 30. Ricky Nolasco is 31. None of these guys is the future of the Twins. We hope that Trevor May and Tommy Milone are the future of the Twins. They need to be pitching in Minnesota, not in Rochester. But Because the Twins seem to feel obligated to use Correia and Pino, and apparently feel obligated to use Nolasco as well, Rochester is where they stay.
I suspect Correia and maybe even Pino would have some trade value (Nolasco probably doesn't because of his injury). I haven't gone through rosters, but I have to think there's some team that's fighting for a playoff spot who could use a fourth or fifth starter to round out their rotation. You wouldn't get a king's ransom for them, but you might get a half-decent prospect. Meanwhile, you'd create a spot for your young pitchers. Of course, it's entirely possible that Terry Ryan is working on just such a trade. Ryan tends to keep trade discussions pretty quiet. I can hope, anyway.
At any rate, there are now just fifty games left in the season. You know what that means: a fifty-game winning streak! We'll just have to settle for 101-61!