First Pitch - 12:05 CDT
This has been one of those rare and eventful spring weekends when Passover, Easter, my birthday and unofficial weed day all align on the calendar. On top of that, we enjoyed our first day of the year above 70 degrees here in the Twins Cities, reaching a sunny 78 above zero yesterday. What's more, after a Friday rain-out the Twins won both ends of a Saturday double header against Baltimore, the first in a 6-5 squeaker that saw Jose Berrios pick up his third W of the season despite not having his best stuff, and the second a 16-7 laugher in which the Twins tied a team record for most home runs in a game*. All in all, the twin bill was as sweet, savory and satisfying as a big platter of Boog's barbecue. The end of the night witnessed the Twins perched atop the AL Central and the Orioles inhabiting a blogger's abode in the basement of the AL East.
Today's tilt features two northpaws on the mound as the Twins look to complete a sweep of the rather hapless Orioles, sending Kyle Gibson to the dirt pile for his fourth start and in search of his first decision of the season. After an impressive campaign last year (10-13, 3.62 ERA, 3.8 WAR) that saw him consistently attack the strike zone and challenge hitters, Gibson seems to have reverted to his nibbling ways. To be fair, I thought he got a bit squeezed by a tight strike zone in his last start, but he also failed to adjust to the indented corners the umpire established right off the bat. Nobody doubts that Gibson has major league stuff at this point, but to my view he needs to take a lesson from a hurling Gibson of yore, wrinkle his brow, fix a steely glare in his eye, throw the living fire out of the ball and work hitters hard inside with far more frequency. Baltimore sends Dylan Bundy to the hill today. In four previous starts he's compiled a record of no wins and two losses and a robust 7.79 ERA, but he has notched 22 strikeouts. So break out the brooms and let's git 'er done, boys. Play ball!
* A preponderance of early-season dingers has many observers of the game speculating that Rawlings is once again manufacturing baseballs with a tad more juice in them this year.
The Twins are coming off losing a fairly disappointing series against a very beatable Blue Jays team. Every game felt winnable, but they were only able to seal the deal once.
THANKFULLY, the Orioles seem as beatable, if not more so.
Let's see if Polanco can't continue his crazy run, and if they can't bring out the brooms for a doubleheader sweep today. Continue reading 2016 Games 17 & 18: Twins @ Orioles – Let’s play two!
Buchholz vs Pineda
Tortuga behind the dish in place of Castro and batting 7th (bumping Schoop down a spot), but otherwise the lineup looks like last evening’s successful bunch.
Pindeda’s innings pitched in his first three starts have gone 4, 5 & 6. Rocco & the Bullpen certainly wouldn’t mind if he continued that trend with 7 (or 8 or 9) innings this afternoon.
Salvage the Split!!!
Let’s right the ship & split the series.
Twins and Blue Jays in game two of a 4 game tilt at Target Field. Blue Jays put up Aaron Sanchez who is 1-1 and pitched decently early in the season but still hasn't gotten out of the 6th inning. Speaking of short starts... Twins have Kyle Gibson who is 0-0 but an ERA of 7.71 and hasn't gotten out of the 5th inning yet. As usual, Gibby has looked good for a while then has one bad inning. Twins could use a good outing tonight as cracks in the bullpen starting to show up.
Game time 6:40. Beautiful night for baseball, hopefully more people show up tonight. First pitch at 6:40p.
Sorry, wanted to write an actual game log but events have conspired against me. Martín Pérez is on the mound tonight. Uhh... good luck!
Due to the schedule irregularities this time of year, we have another Sunday game with Jose Berrios starting for the Twins. In three starts he's compiled a 1-1 record, a 2.18 ERA and 21 strikeouts. He has a 0.726 WHIP and 2.94 FIP. His ERA+ is 203, and he has a WAR of 0.8. He's pretty much everything we hoped he would become. It's nice to see a young man with great talent and skill in the early years of his career. But I have to admit that my attention today will be divided as I watch an older man try to reclaim some of the accolades from the glory days of his career by winning another major tournament and another green jacket. Play ball!
Down 2-0 after two and a half. Unlucky inning for Pineda full of bloops and a potential DP ricocheting (Dazzle word!) off an umpire.
Both pitchers are coming off a loss. Syndergaard however gave up two runs over his six innings instead of five without finishing the first inning. This is Syndergaard's first appearance against the Twins in his career. Yesterday was also deGrom's first appearance against the Twins. Time for a repeat performance.
Twins wrap up a long road trip with a visit to Queens and a two game series with the 6-3 New York Mets. Gibson up for the Twins as he comes off a "bad Gibby" performance of 6 runs in 4.2 innings in his season debut. Hopefully we get good Gibby tonight. It will be especially important as the Mets have reigning Cy Young awardee Jacob deGrom on the mound. deGrom is currently tied with Bob Gibson with for the MLB record of 26 straight quality starts so it would be cool if the Twins bats were active early and often. Mets have a few injuries with Yoenis Cespedes, Jed Lowrie, and Todd Frazier all out of the line up. Also the Mets added Robinson Cano during the off season? I swear I didn't hear about that trade. Huh. He usually plays well against the Twins so that's a bummer.
Game time 6:10p locally. Looks like there might be some rain in the forecast but I bet they get this game in.
Twins Line up: