The Yankees beat the Twins 7-2 last night. Reports are that Ron Gardenhire wasn’t exactly pleased with the way Brian Duensing pitched, especially given how the conversation in the dugout after the lefty was pulled went.
But really, Duensing didn’t pitch too badly. Of the 7 runs, he is credited with giving up 5, but one of those was on a homerun allowed by Francisco Liriano. So he gave up 4 runs in 4.2 innings, and struck out three Yankees. He threw 59 of his 79 pitches for strikes. It’s tough to face a team like the Yankees because they are very patient hitters, can foul a lot of pitches off, and when you make a mistake they make you pay seemingly everytime. If you look here, you’ll see that Duensing got the Yankees to swing at a lot of pitches that weren’t strikes. Without the extreme wind blowing out to centerfield, Matsui never would have hit that homer off Liriano, and Kubel probably gets to that blooper in right field that eventually scored, and we have a whole new ballgame.
Nick Blackburn has pitched some huge games for the Twins in the past couple years. What’s one more?