2021 Game 55: Minnesota Twins at Baltimore Orioles

Randy Dobnak
Matt Harvey

Twins now 33% done with the season. At the 25% mark I did some simple projections on record and run scoring for the team. Let's do it again.

Record: 66 - 96 (+9 wins since last time)
Runs scored: 750 (+5 runs)
Runs allowed: 822 (-49 runs)
Pythag prediction: 75 - 87 (+6 wins)

FanGraphs still projects the team at 79 wins, unchanged from two weeks ago. I think I still take the under for that number but the 75 - 79 win mark feels about right.

Polanco - SS
Donaldson - 3B
Kirilloff - LF
Cruz - DH
Larnach - RF
Astudillo - 1B
Gordon - 2B
Jeffers - C
Celestino - CF

31 thoughts on “2021 Game 55: Minnesota Twins at Baltimore Orioles”

  1. Matt Harvey is 3-6, 6.84, with a WHIP of 1.64. He hasn't had a game score of over 50 since May 1, when he had a 51. The Twins should score a lot of runs tonight. But of course, that doesn't mean that they will.

    1. One thing I've come to internalize over years of playing baseball sims is that while a 6.84 ERA is terrible over the course of a season, any one game is up for grabs. Over a 5 inning start that's about 3-4 runs on average. If today is 3 and the Twins lose 5-4, it feels like we didn't take advantage when actually we did as expected.

      Then again, it's Matt Harvey. I predict 9 runs

  2. The Twins' failures when men in scoring position have been widely reported, but what's really frustrating is how many of those failures have been strikeouts, with no chance to even advance the runners. I don't know what the percentage of strikeouts is, but it seems like it must be pretty high.

    1. Sano is 2nd in the league in that category. Garver is 42nd. Everyone else middle of the pack or lower.

      Can't speak to team comparisons, but overall the Twins are middle of the pack in strikeouts. Pitchers are impossible to hit these days

      1. But I'm talking specifically about strikeouts with men in scoring position. They may be middle of the pack there, too, I don't know. I don't even know if there's a way to find out. But it's very frustrating.

        1. Right, I don't know the answer. But they have only two players in the top 50 in SO with RISP

          1. Thanks guys! That's still a ton of strikeouts, but I guess not much more than average these days.

      2. I would also suggest that pitchers are even more impossible to hit (yes, I know that literally something can't be "more impossible") when you're swinging for the fences, rather than just trying to make contact and advance the runner.

        1. That is true. And teams have decided that going for homers leads to more runs than trying to advance the runner.

          I miss 80s baseball, too.

          1. I wonder how true it is that going for homers is the best strategy. I understand there are analytics that say so, but it's also somewhat of an all-or-nothing approach. Are the number of times you get all worth the number of times you get nothing? Or would you sometimes be better off to settle for one or two rather than going for all and risking "nothing"?

            1. Yeah I don't know. I imagine it's harder to hit sacrifice flies intentionally off of 92 MPH sliders than it was off of Larry Gura.

              All or nothing worked for us in 2019 at least.

              1. And if we hit 300 homers again, it'll probably work again. But that doesn't seem likely.

  3. Bases loaded, none out. I have heard of teams scoring one or even zero runs in this situation.

  4. We all know about the Twins' problems with inherited runners, but it seems to me that we've also had an unusual number of mid-inning pitching changes. That, obviously, leads to more chances to allow inherited runners to score. That's not to criticize Rocco for making the changes--each circumstance is different, and it's hard to make a blanket statement about when you should or should not change pitchers in the middle of an inning. But it sure seems like we change pitchers in the middle of an inning a lot more than we used to.

    1. I see that as a product of the 3 batter minimum. You can wriggle around that by bringing in a pitcher with 2 outs and they (theoretically) get the one out and then you can bring in a fresh pitcher in with a clean slate next inning

  5. The ERAs of tonight's three Baltimore pitchers entering tonight's game.

    Matt Harvey, 6.84
    Tyler Wells, 5.48
    Shawn Armstrong, 8.20

    In seven innings, the Twins have one run on three hits.

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