I like old ballparks. I mean, I like unique ballparks in general, but the crazy angles and quirks of Fenway make it look like something out of a different era. This is not a major league ballpark, it's a relic, and that's kind of awesome. Target Field and Petco and the post-Camden parks are great places to catch a ballgame, but there's something pretty cool about Fenway.
Nolasco vs. Price doesn't seem like a particularly good matchup for Twins fans, but who knows? Price doesn't throw a knuckleball, and Nolasco might let them hit it into the hands of our defense...but he might win anyway!
Twins on Leaderboards
Triples - Buxton - t-7th (4)
Walks - Mauer - t-3rd (54)*
Strikeouts - Sano - t-9th (94)
Stolen Bases - Núñez - 3rd (23)
Singles - Núñez - t-6th (77)
Hit By Pitch - Dozier - t-7th (7)
Sacrifice Bunts - Buxton - t-10th (3)
Sac Flies - Núñez - t-5th (5)
Sac Flies - Dozier - t-8th (4)
Intentional Walks - Mauer - t-3rd (8)
Caught Stealing - Santana - 1st (8)*
Caught Stealing - Núñez - t-4th (6)
Steal Success % - Núñez - 10th (79.31%)
Power/Speed - Núñez - 5th (15.8)
- I've been worried about Mauer, but this, at least, is an encouraging sign
- Successful 11 times. Well past time to put up a stop sign.
BB/9 - Nolasco - 7th (1.962)
Games Pitched - Pressley - t-2nd (47)
Complete Games - Santana & Hughes - t-4th (1)
Shutouts - Santana - t-2nd (1)
Hits Allowed - Nolasco - 5th (130)
Earned Runs Allowed - Nolasco - 6th (64)
Wild Pitches - May - t-3rd (8)*
- I still find this funny. A reliever, who's missed time... 3rd in a counting stat (a negative one, but still)
Hey, gang. Let's keep that win streak going!
Trout still out.
Photo courtesy of Kwong Yee Cheng
*Weather delay pending
I hope baseball-reference updates Twins All Star Robbie Grossman's profile pic. Right now it shows him in a Clevelander hat and thats not right.
Ricky Nolasco starts for the locals tonight. Yeah, he's been not good but at least he has been striking out people! ( 53k in 58 innings = 8.2 k/9)
The Twins have been bad, but at least they haven't done this feat (yet!).
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Caleb wrote that. What he lacks in sound analysis, he makes up for with sheer exuberance.
With the season one tenth done already, we press on, hoping that the second tenth is better than the first.
It's our annual "outside chore day", so I don't have much time to put this together, so no Twins on Leaderboards. Suffice to say, Mauer ha looked a lot like his old self, Sano is heating up, and Nolasco has already provided more value this year than his first two seasons combined.
Hughes vs. Roark. Let's put last night behind us.
Remember when we were joakingly discussing the possibility of Minnesota's first win coming against the Brewers because they were the first "obviously inferior" opponent on the schedule? Good times.
A win today salvages a season-split with the Sconnie's and would give the Twins their first road win of the season. It would also get them to 5 wins - the same number of W's as the Astros & Yankees (the other divisions' last-place teams).
R. Nolasco (0-0, 3.21 ERA, 8:2 K:BB, 118 ERA+, 3.25 FIP, 1.000 WHIP - 14 innings)
T. Jungmann (0-2, 9.00 ERA, 9:4 K:BB, 47 ERA+, 4.81 FIP, 1.615 WHIP - 13 innings)
.500 ball at home and .000 on the road is no way to go through a season - let's break through that barrier fellas!
There, now doesn't that feel better? Even if good things aren't ahead (and let's be honest, things have to get at least a little better - I have to imagine more than 2 Twins will have batting averages above .200) getting that first win feels good, maaan.
Today, Ricky Nolasco takes on Jered Weaver to see who can rebound better from 2015. Weaver is probably done as an ace, but he always seems to pitch pretty well against the Twins. (9-2, 3.22). He gives up a lot of fly balls, so maybe that would be a place to start.
We got the win yesterday, now, onto bigger and better things - the winning streak.
Twins on Leaderboards
Batting Average - Mauer - 7th (.371)
OBP - Mauer - t-6th (.465)
Hits - Mauer - t-7th (13)
Doubles - Escobar - t-4th (4)
Triples - Mauer & Suzuki - t-3rd (1)
Walks - Mauer & Sano - t-6th (6)
Strikeouts - Sano - t-3rd (15)*
Singles - Mauer - t-4th (10)
Runs Created - Mauer - t-10th (9)
Times on Base - Mauer t-4rd (20)
Hit By Pitch - Nunez - t-2nd (2)**Hit By Pitch - Mauer, Buxton & Park - t-7th (1)
Sac Bunts - Dozier, Buxton, & Rosario - t-1st (1)
Sac Flies - Mauer & Suzuki - t-6th (1)
Intentional Walks - Escobar, Mauer & Rosario - t-2nd (1)
Caught Stealing - Nunez - t-2nd (2)
Caught Stealing - Escobar & Santana t-4th (1)
Stolen Base % - Buxton, Roasrio, & Dozier t-1st (100%)
AB/K - Mauer 9th (8.8)***
- I guess I'm a little surprised that Sano is the only one on this list.
- Surprise, surprise
- Oh, I do like this.
First pitch – 1:15 PM
BREAKING: The Minnesota Twins equipment manager is offering apologies after shipping mostly ass bats with the team for their season-opening road trip. According to the front office, there was a mix up in the packing process and the ass bats were affixed with the wrong shipping labels. Replacements are being requisitioned as quickly as possible. The Twins front office responded to the incident by transferring the equipment manager to the training staff.
Because Ervin Santana pitched but two innings in the rain-delayed season opener and the Twins’ skipper was afforded the chance to use him again on Friday, we’re not seeing our first look at our last starter, Ricky Nolasco, until the 6th game of the new campaign. Now, I’m inclined to think that the less we see of Nolasco the better, but we are paying a premium for the privilege of not watching him pitch while he recovers from the injuries that have made him such a disappointment since the Twins acquired him. My hope for Nolasco is that he can redeem himself and have a solid year anchoring the rotation. Alas, the tempest that spawns when one’s expectations are not aligned with one’s hopes.
Squaring off on the mound against Nolasco today is Edinson Volquez in his second start of the season. In his Opening Day effort against the Mets in Willits Point, Volquez gave up just two hits over six frames while striking out five and walking three. He’s coming off a 2015 season of 13 wins and nine losses with 200.1 innings pitched and a 3.55 ERA.
On the other side of the ball, the Twins offensive outcomes to date have ranged from feeble to frustrating. A team that strikes out this much – 58 times in just 5 games – should be playing in a beer league or on a sandlot. Meager bright spots in an otherwise dull offense include Eduardo Escobar sporting a 1.104 OPS powered by four doubles, Joe Mauer with his .880 OPS, and Byung Ho Park compiling an .837 OPS while hitting at just a .231 clip.
We’re burning daylight. Play ball!
I hope everyone has had an enjoyable and agreeable Memorial Day weekend. I'm sure there will be plenty of pomp and spectacle during the actual game, but whenever you get a chance today, maybe take a moment and quietly reflect on the holiday and those whose memory it honors.
I was thinking about trying to make yesterday's game in Chicago, but other vague plans (which didn't materialize) and threat of weather kept us away. A shame as it would have been a good one.
Anyway, now that the Twins aren't playing Chicago, I can actually watch them again. Score. They leave the Prairie State with a 4-1 road trip in their back pocket, and six games at home in front of them, where they've enjoyed a .700 record (2nd in the AL).
They'll open up that homestand with 3 games against the 3rd place Red Sox. Someone posted a link recently that mirrored the exasperation this team has been causing me. They're just not supposed to be this good, you know? Regardless, I will continue to cautiously watch, and enjoy the ride.
Happy Memorial Day, you guys.
Continue reading 2015 Game 44: Boston Red Sox vs. Minnesota Twins – Memorial Day Edition
The Twins posted a nice albeit oddly uncomfortable win in their first inter-league game of the season, carpet bombing the F-Bomb by scoring early and often on Pirate's starter and former Twin Francisco Liriano. Brian Dozier led off the Twins offensive attack with a solo homer in the first. In a wild six-run second inning, Suzuki started things off by scoring on a wild pitch. Trevor Plouffe capped the inning with a two-run blast that in between saw Joe Mauer drive in three runs with a bases-clearing single. The Twins ended their scoring in the third when Suzuki crossed home on a ground-ball double play off the bat of Robinson. With eight on the board and a seven run lead after three, it seemed like the game was in the bag, but this is baseball and there would be cause for concern before this one ended.
The Pirates got on the board in the bottom of the second when Jose Tabata sort of singled on a two-out ground ball that Dozier should have handled to end the inning but didn't, allowing Jung Ho Kang to score from third base. The Bucs added another run in the fourth inning when Pedro Alvarez literally boated a blast off Nolasco over the right-field wall and into a docked runabout. With two runners in scoring position and one out in the bottom of the fifth, the Pirates chalked another run on a 6-3 putout off the bat of Kang, driving in Neil Walker. Nolaco gave up another run in the sixth inning when Walkers double to right field with runners on the corners scored Josh Harrison. With Aaron Thompson relieving in the seventh, Marte scored the last Pirate run on a Harrison single.
Damn near a quarter of the way through the season, the Twins find themselves in fairly unfamiliar territory, holding third place a half game behind the Tigers and just three games the behind division-leading Royals. I have to admit that I'm enjoying the ride so far, even as I wonder how long the engine will hold up when it's sort of low on oil and coolant, and the gas gauge is broken so I'm not sure if we're going to run out of fuel next week or next month, and at least a couple of the tires are nearly bald and could blow out any time now. There are problems with this team's pitching and defense (Danny Santana has ten of the Twins' 25 errors this year, contribution greatly to his team-low -0.7 WAR) but so far the offense has been good enough to get us where we are - five games above .500 and averaging 4.5 runs per game with a +2 differential. It ain't exactly championship caliber, but it's good enough to make things interesting and keep the puppy photographers in business for the time being.