Tag Archives: bad defense

1970 Rewind: Game Thirty-one


Date:  Saturday, May 16.

Batting stars:  Rod Carew was 3-for-4 with a home run, a hit-by-pitch, three runs, and three RBIs.  Cesar Tovar was 2-for-3 with two doubles, two walks, a stolen base (his eleventh), and four runs.  Tony Oliva was 2-for-5 with a home run (his seventh), two runs, and four RBIs.  Harmon Killebrew was 2-for-5 with a home run, his eleventh.  Brant Alyea was 1-for-4 with a two-run homer, his seventh.

Pitching star:  Ron Perranoski struck out two in a scoreless inning, giving up a walk.

Opposition stars:  Future Twin Phil Roof was 3-for-4 with a home run (his second), a walk, and two runs.  John Kennedy was 2-for-3 with a home run, his second.  Steve Hovley was 2-for-4 with a double.  Mike Hegan was 2-for-5 with a triple and a double.  Ted Kubiak was 2-for-5.  Russ Snyder was 1-for-5 with a three-run homer.

The game:  Cesar Tovar walked to open the game, stole second, and scored on a pair of ground outs to put the Twins up 1-0.  They took control of the game in the third when Tovar again started a rally.  He doubled and scored on a Rod Carew single.  Oliva and Killebrew then hit back-to-back home runs to give the Twins a 5-0 lead.

Kennedy homered in the bottom of the third to put the Brewers on the board.  The Twins came back in the bottom of the third as Tovar again stated a rally.  He walked and Carew followed with a two-run homer, making it 7-1.

Tovar started one more rally in the sixth.  He doubled and Carew was hit by a pitch.  Oliva had an RBI single, Rich Reese hit a sacrifice fly, and Alyea hit a two-run homer, bringing the score to 11-1.

Milwaukee tried to make a game of it.  In the sixth Hovley doubled and Max Alvis singled him in to make it 11-2.  In the seventh, Roof singled, Kubiak moved him to third, and Snyder hit a three-run homer to cut the lead to 11-5.  It did not kill the rally--Hegan doubled and future Twin Danny Walton singled, bringing the score to 11-6.  Roof homered in the eighth to cut the lead to 11-7, but that was all the Brewers could do.

WP:  Dave Boswell (1-5).

LP:  Gene Brabender (1-5).

S:  Ron Perranoski (9).

Notes:  Paul Ratliff remained behind the plate in place of George Mitterwald.  Jim Holt replaced Alyea in left in the sixth inning.  Frank Quilici replaced Killebrew at third in the eighth.

Carew was batting .408, the first time all year (and maybe in his career) that he was over .400.  Oliva was batting .333.  Killebrew was batting .330.  Alyea was batting .302.  Stan Williams gave up two runs in 1.2 innings and had an ERA of 1.80.  Perranoski had an ERA of 1.69.

Boswell pitched 6.1 innings, giving up five runs on ten hits and a walk and striking out three.  His ERA was 6.37.

Brabender started for Milwaukee.  He pitched just two innings, giving up five runs on five hits and two walks and striking out two.

Carew was 12-for-18 over his last four games, raising his average from .328 to .408.  He was 16-for-33 over his last eight games,

Bill Rigney must have considered Alyea to be an awful outfielder.  He has frequently done what he did here, replacing him with Holt in the sixth inning when he knew that spot in the batting order would have to come up at least one more time.

The Brewers used five pinch-hitters:  Hank Allen, Greg Goossen, Mike Hershberger, Jerry McNertney, and Ted Savage.  These days, of course, teams don't even have five substitutes available.

Record:  The Twins were 21-10, in first place in the American League West by winning percentage, but tied with California in games.

2019 Recap: Game Ninety-five


Date:  Thursday, July 18.

Batting stars:  Eddie Rosario was 1-for-1 with a three-run homer, his twenty-first.  Mitch Garver was 1-for-4 with a home run, his sixteenth.  C. J. Cron was 1-for-4 with a home run, his eighteenth.  Luis Arraez was 1-for-2 with a double and two walks.  Miguel Sano was 1-for-2 with two walks and two runs.

Pitching stars:  Kyle Gibson struck out seven in seven innings, giving up three runs on six hits and no walks.  Taylor Rogers pitched two shutout innings, giving up two hits and striking out one.

Opposition stars:  Ramon Laureano was 3-for-4 with two runs.  Jurickson Profar was 1-for-4 with a two-run homer, his fourteenth.  Mike Fiers pitched 6.1 innings, giving up three runs on six hits and four walks and striking out four.

The game:  The Athletics put men on first and third with two out in the second, but there was no score until the third, when Sano walked, went to second on a Jake Cave single, took third on a bunt, and scored on a wild pitch.  Oakland immediately tied it in the fourth, as Laureano singled, went to second on a wild pitch, and scored on a Khris Davis double.

The Twins missed a chance in the fifth, putting men on first and second with none out and running themselves out of the inning.  It looked like it would be costly, as the Athletics took the lead in the sixth.  Laureano singled with one out and Profar hit a two-out two-run homer, putting Oakland up 3-1.  But in the seventh, Arraez hit a one-out double, Sano walked, and Rosario, pinch-hitting for Cave, hit a three-run homer to give the Twins a 4-3 lead.

Oakland got a pair of one-out singles in the eighth, but a strikeout and a fly out ended the inning.  The Twins then got some insurance, as Garver and Cron each homered to make it 6-3.  The Athletics went down in order in the ninth.

WP:  Gibson (9-4).  LP:  Yusmeiro Petit (2-2).  S:  Rogers (14).

Notes:  Max Kepler was in center field and Cave in right, with Byron Buxton still out.  Marwin Gonzalez was in left, replacing Rosario.  When Rosario entered the game, he went to left, with Gonzalez in right.  Arraez was at second base with Jonathan Schoop still out.  Ehire Adrianza was at shortstop, replacing Jorge Polanco.

Arraez raised his average to .382.  Rogers has an ERA of 1.61.

The Twins made two more errors, although this time none of them led to runs.  Everyone keeps saying, "Well, Buxton's out", but Buxton isn't going to stop infielders from booting grounders or throwing the ball away.  Anyone who says, "Defense doesn't go into a slump" hasn't been watching the Twins lately.

But, all's well that ends well.  Gibson pitched a good game--not dominating, but seven innings, three runs, six hits, no walks is something you'd take from him every time.  Rogers remains outstanding.  Arraez had another good game.  And Rosario, well, what more can you say?

And Miguel Sano has quietly been batting very well lately.  He was 1-for-2 last night and he drew two walks, both of which led to runs.  He's only batting .236 on the season, which isn't great, but his OBP is .324.  Since June 27, when he went 0-for-7 in the eighteen inning game, he's batting .340/.436/.702.  A productive Sano would be really helpful over the last two and a half months of the season.

Record:  The Twins are 59-36, in first place in the American League Central, four games ahead of Cleveland.

Projected record:  We're still on track for 126-36!

2019 Recap: Game Eighty-five


Date:  Wednesday, July 3.

Batting stars:  Luis Arraez was 3-for-5.  Mitch Garver was 2-for-6.  Jorge Polanco was 1-for-5 with a home run, his twelfth.

Pitching stars:  Kyle Gibson pitched six innings, giving up three runs (two earned) on five hits and four walks and striking out five.  Zack Littell pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit and a walk and striking out one.  Ryne Harper struck out two in a scoreless inning, giving up one hit.  Tyler Duffey pitched a perfect inning.  Blake Parker struck out three in two shutout innings, giving up a hit and two walks.  Taylor Rogers struck out two in a scoreless inning, giving up one hit.

Opposition stars:  Mike Fiers pitched six innings, giving up two runs (one earned) on five hits and no walks and striking out four.  Ramon Laureano was 2-for-4 with a three-run homer (his fourteenth) and a walk.  Robbie Grossman was 2-for-4 with a walk.  Liam Hendriks struck out two in two shutout innings, giving up one hit.

The game:  Khris Davis reached on an error to start the bottom of the second.  Mark Canha walked and Laureano hit a three-run homer, and that quickly the Athletics led 3-0.  Oakland had chances to add to their lead, but could not take advantage of them.  Marcus Semien opened the third with a double but did not score.  Laureano and Grossman led off the fourth with singles but a force out and a double play ended the inning.  Still, the Athletics led 3-0 through five.

The Twins then pecked away, as Dazzle likes to say.  Singles by Jonathan SchoopMax Kepler, and Garver produced a run in the sixth.  Singles by Arraez and Ehire Adrianza were followed by an error to make the score 3-2.  Polanco hit a two-out homer in the eighth to tie it 3-3.

Each team missed chances in the extra frames.  Oakland started the tenth with two walks but did not score.  The Twins had men on first and third with one out in the eleventh and did not score.  The Twins broke through in the twelfth, though.  Byron Buxton and Kepler drew one-out walks and Garver followed with an RBI single to give the Twins their first lead at 4-3.  A double play took them out of the inning.  Would the lead hold up?

Obviously it did, but the Athletics made it interesting.  Matt Chapman reached on an error to start the inning.  With one out, Jurickson Profar singled, sending Chapman to third, but Profar was thrown out trying to make second, so there were two down with the tying run ninety feet away.  He stayed there, as Canha struck out to end the game.

WP:  Parker (1-2).  LP:  Blake Treinen (2-3).  S:  Rogers (11).

Notes:  Arraez is now batting .431 in sixty-five at-bats.  I wonder what the record is for highest batting average in your first sixty-five at-bats.  Polanco is down to .318.  Harper has an ERA of 2.88.  Duffey is at 2.33.  Rogers' ERA is 1.93.

Arraez was in left field, and while I still don't like playing infielders in the outfield I gather he's done okay there.  Of course, you'll put up with less defense from a guy who bats .431.  Adrianza was at shortstop, with Polanco the DH and Nelson Cruz out of the lineup.

In the second inning, I don't think many people would've predicted that Gibson would get through six without giving up any more runs.  He didn't exactly dominate, but he got by.  The Much Maligned Bullpen came through with six shutout innings, although they didn't exactly dominate, either.  The Oaklands went 1-for-15 with men in scoring position.

I am pleased to see Liam Hendriks pitching well.  I still feel like the Twins didn't give him much of a chance, although I have to admit that he didn't do much with the chances they did give him.  When the Twins waived him after the 2013 season, I doubt that anyone in the front office thought he'd still be pitching in 2019, but here he is.  Good for him.

The Twins made two more errors last night.  I don't have time to go back and count, but they've made an awful lot of errors in recent weeks.  I don't know what happened to that excellent defensive team we had the first couple of months of the season, but I sure wish they'd come back.  Injuries have played a part, of course, but that's not a complete excuse.

The Twins still managed to avoid losing three games in a row.  Of course, it's been about three weeks since they won three in a row.  It would sure be nice to see them put together a little winning streak here before the all-star break.

Record:  The Twins are 54-31, first in the American League Central, seven games ahead of Cleveland.

Projected record:  We're still on track for 131-31!