Minor Details: Games of 6/1 – 6/5


Wednesday—Rochester 10, Toledo 9 in Rochester.  The Red Wings overcame a 7-0 first inning deficit.  Rene Tosoni and Aaron Bates each had three hits, with Tosoni hitting a home run.

Thursday—Rochester 8, Toledo 0 in Rochester.  Eric Hacker struck out six in six innings, giving up four hits and four walks.

Friday—Norfolk 7, Rochester 2 in Rochester.  Aaron Bates had two hits.  Kyle Gibson allowed six runs (four earned) on nine hits with five strikeouts in five innings.

Saturday—Rochester 5, Norfolk 1 in Rochester.  Dustin Martin doubled and homered.  Scott Diamond allowed an unearned run on four hits and a walk in eight innings.

Sunday—Norfolk 11, Rochester 5 in Rochester (11 innings).  Rene Tosoni had two singles and a double.  Aaron Bates and Chase Lambin each singled and homered.

Continue reading Minor Details: Games of 6/1 – 6/5

Game #58: Twins 6, Royals 0

Twins record: 21-37

Whoops, I forgot I had to do one of these, so I'm going to get in, get out, and go to bed. The Twins won, we swept the Royals in KC, baseball is fun again, Duensing was on top of his game, there's some cool pictures from the WGOM get-together in the CoC, I can't think of as many things to say when the Twins win as when they lose. That's all I've got.

Hitter of the Week: I suppose I ought to give one of these to Alexi Casilla before he turns back into Alexi Casilla.
Pitcher of the Week: Carl Pavano

Game 58: Twins at Royals

Brian Duensing vs. Jeff Francis

This is the Twins' fourth three-game winning streak of the season and they do not have a four-game winning streak. So, the Twins are due, right? This will be the third time that Duensing is the starter as the Twins go for a fourth consecutive victory.

The Twins have followed the three previous three-game win streaks with six-, nine- and four-game losing streaks, so the Twins need to find a way to keep this going, but the current health of their roster is likely to make this difficult. With a lefty on the mound, I wouldn't be surprised if both Justin Morneau and Denard Span get an extra day off to help with their minor injuries.

Duensing is 0-5 in his last six starts. This bad stretch started in Kansas City, so hopefully coming full circle will help Duensing put an end to it.

Alexi Casilla is now hitting .301/.370/.390 in his last 34 games (119 PAs).  The Twins desperately need some production and consistent defense from a middle infielder, so this is a good sign. GO TWINS!!!

Game 57: Twins 7, Royals 2

Twins manager Ron Gardenhire rubbed the champagne out of his eyes as he reflected on the wild ride of the past five months that had concluded with the franchise's third world championship following another epic seven-game World Series against the Philadelphia Phillies.

"I've never had as much fun managing a team as I have these past five months," Gardenhire said. "But I've never been as miserable managing a team as I was the first two months."

So, what keyed the turnaround?

"No. 1 was getting healthy," Gardenhire said. "It was ridiculous there for awhile. They should have just called us the Red Wings. I'd never seen anything like it. Once we got our horses back, we started to play like we expected to. Then we started to get our bullpen straightened out as well as healthy. Chuck James was just a godsend. He gave us three strong lefties along with Glen Perkins and Jose Mijares. Then we could match up Slama with righties, who have a real tough time with his motion. Of course, just getting Joe Nathan healthy enough to resume his closer role was big so Cappy could go back to setting up.

"But what I think really helped us turn it up to a high level was getting back to Twins-brand baseball."

Was there any point in the season to point to that began the turnaround?

"That series in Kansas City in the beginning of June," Gardenhire said. "We had almost the entire starting lineup on the DL or on the bench with injuries, so we had almost no power at all in the lineup, so we talked to the guys about just being more aggressive with the small ball. Taking extra bases, hitting-and-running, bunting, that sort of thing.

"Lexi (Casilla) and Benny (Revere) really took to it.  It was fun to watch."

That series was during Casilla's resurgence. Casilla had nearly played himself off the roster with his terrible hitting and inconsistent defense the first six weeks of the season, but Casilla turned it around and became a key member of the Twins and formed an exciting double-play combo with Tsuyoshi Nishioka. Revere, of course, took advantage of the injuries and played so well he eventually displaced Delmon Young as the starting left fielder.

With Revere and then Nishioka added to the lineup along with Casilla and Denard Span, Piranhas II: The Comeback was born.

Remodeled basement. Same half-baked taste.