Wednesday, May 9, 2007
Morneau Makes Twins 5-0
Good morning everyone! First things first... I know I say some dumb things from time to time, but wow and wow!!
In the bottom of the 10th, Dick Bremer rambled some crap about Justin Morneau needing to find a way to deliver with Runners in Scoring Position. The next pitch, he hit about 485 feet into the upper deck in right field. The homer gave the Twins a 7-4 win over the White Sox. It also gave the Twins organization five wins in five games last night. Here are some thoughts on the Twins and all four of their winning affiliates:
The Twins started a series against the Chicago White Sox in an intra-division game. These teams simply do not like each other. Here are some thoughts on the game and other notes on the Twins.
The Justin Morneau homer was a blast. A spinning slider at about the letters should be hit about that far. It was Morneau's second homer of the night and eighth of the still-young season. As much as people want to think that Morneau is struggling to start the season, and he admittedly has, realize that he is currently on pace for 40 homers and 106 RBI. That's not bad.
Of course, that would not have happened without a three run bottom of the 8th to tie the game one four. Jason Bartlett doubled in Mike Redmond. Luis Castillo scored Nick Punto with a groundout. And finally, Torii Hunter extended his hitting streak to 22 games with a single up the middle to tie the game.
Easiest things to do in baseball... throw an intentional walk. Or, maybe not.
I haven't linked there for awhile, but be sure to check out the BrentNet Twins forum! There is plenty of good discussion over there.
Oh man... Ozzie Guillen coined the term "The Pirahnas." How many times will we have to hear about that in this series?! Man that is annoying! (I think I've mentioned that before)
Boof Bonser had just one walk and eight strikeouts in his seven innings. He gave up the homer to Joe Crede leading off the 3rd inning. The three other runs were all unearned thanks to an error by himself. Although he hasn't pitched great by any means and is 0-1 on the season, his ERA is now down to 3.96. His WHIP is down to a - still high - 1.55. In my preseason predictions, I had Bonser having a 4.39 ERA and a 1.32 WHIP. In other words, what I'm trying to say is, his numbers are not too far off of what our projections would have been. That said, he has 21 walks in 38.2 innings. Tonight was a good night. 70 of his 95 pitches were for strikes. That is terrific. If he can control the number of walks, his WHIP will continue to drop.
Jason Kubel was not in the starting lineup tonight because he was 0-9 in his career against Javier Vazquez. I realize that isn't good. But I have to wonder... how many at bats is really enough to say that a guy can not hit another guy? What if Gardy would have played Kubel and he would have gone 4-4? Suddenly, he is 4-13 against Vazquez, a nice .308 average. Suddenly then he is a guy who you have to get into the lineup against Vazquez. Small Sample Size is a funny thing!
This is going to sound like I'm unnecessarily backing Jason Kubel. But, when he came to the plate in the bottom of the 10th inning with Luis Castillo on 2nd base and nobody out, I just don't understand why you have him bunt there. First, a hitter like that just doesn't bunt. Second, he's left-handed, so a simple ground ball to second base advances the runner anyway. Finally, I would take my chances with three guys having a chance to drive in Castillo from second, rather than one chance for a sacrifice fly and a second chance.
Good to see Michael Cuddyer back in the lineup even if he had some bad at bats tonight. Hopefully it won't take long to shake off the rust.
Pat Neshek posted a couple of letters received in the Twins clubhouse of late that are absolutely hilarious. Check them out to learn how NOT to request an autograph in the mail!
This is New Britain related, but this LaVelle posting and the Comments within it are so funny that I had to post. Check it out!
Joe Christensen posted a question. Why does AJ get booed? What a great question, really! You will see that I posted. But I was one of well of 100 posters on the topic. Check it out and weigh in if you like.
By the way, did you see that the Washington Nationals purchased the contract of Tony Batista from their AAA team? Also, Cristian Guzman just came back off the disabled list. How bad is the left side of that infield!
Tonight, it is Ramon Ortiz going against John Danks. Ortiz has been much better on the road than at home. Just more hits, possibly more groundballs getting through the infield. That will be interesting to watch.
MINOR LEAGUE REPORTS
Player of the Day – Juan Portes,
Ft. Myers Miracle
Tuesday SethSpeaks Player of the Day – Yohan Pino, Ft. Myers Miracle
Rochester 6, Toledo 5 - In an afternoon game, the Red Wings got back on the winning track behind the arm of Scott Baker. Baker gave up three runs on six hits in 6.2 innings. He walked one and struck out four. Julio DePaula got the four batters he faced out, two on strikeouts. Bobby Korecky pitched the ninth for his seventh save, although he gave up two runs in the inning. Jose Morales continues his hot hitting. He went 2-4 with his eighth double. Tommy Watkins was also 2-4. Matthew LeCroy hit his first homer of the year. Denard Span went 1-2 with two sacrifice bunts (exciting to the Twins, I'm sure) and two stolen bases. Ken Harvey made his first appearance as a pinch hitter.
New Britain 10, Harrisburg 6 - Garrett Guzman led the way in this high-scoring game. He went 3-5 with his third homer and two RBI. Matt Allegra went 2-4 with his fourth double and three RBI. David Winfree went 2-5. Brian Buscher hit his second homer. Tristan Crawford picked up his third win in his short stint with the Rockcats. He gave up five runs (4 earned) on eight hits and a walk. He struck out four. Brian Forystek recorded a save with three innings in relief. He gave up a run and struck out two.
Ft. Myers 6, St. Lucie 2 - Juan Portes got more hits than the whole Ft. Myers team has had in the last two weeks put together. OK, that is a slight exaggeration. Last night, Portes went 4-5 with two RBI. Dwayne White helped out by going 2-4 with his first homer and two RBI. Caleb Moore went 2-4. 28 year old Luis Ugueto, who spent time with the Mariners in 2002 and 2003, made his Twins organization debut with the Miracle last night. He batted second and went 1-5. He also committed an error at SS. Ryan Mullins has had a very solid season and finally he got some run support. The lefty went five innings. He gave up one run on five hits. He walked one and struck out four. Angel Garcia came in and gave up a hit and three walks without recording an out and was replaced by Yohan Pino. He got out of that inning without any further runs (strikeout and a double play) scoring and pitched another perfect inning of relief. David Shinskie threw two shutout innings.
Beloit 6, South Bend 4 - Danny Valencia returned to putting up strong offensive numbers in this game. He went 2-5 with his sixth home run. In his previous ten games, he was 6-38 (.158). Garrett Olson went 2-4. Johnny Woodard hit his second homer. Danny Santiesteban hit his third homer. Cole DeVries started and went 4.2 innings. He gave up four runs (2 earned) on four hits and three walks. Jesus Carnevale got the final out of the fifth. Aaron Craig went two shutout innings. Dan Leatherman got the win with a scoreless eighth. And as he has so frequently of late, Robert Delaney came in for the 9th and recorded his 8th save.|
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