Twins lose 3 of 4 to Rangers
May 28, 2014; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Twins right fielder Oswaldo Arcia (31) walks back to the dug out after striking out in the first inning against the Texas Rangers at Target Field. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports
After being swept in a 3 game set in San Francisco last weekend, the Twins continue to stack up the loss column losing 3 of 4 to the Rangers.
Trevor Plouffe continued to hit well as he started the series with a solo home run in his first at-bat, but that was about the most exciting offensive production from the Twins on Monday afternoon. Kevin Correia, even after giving up 4 runs on 7 hits in 7 innings, pitched better than he has been. Jared Burton, who has been decent of late, struggled in the 8th giving up 3 runs on 3 hits and the Twins lost 7-2.
Tuesday provided a weird walk-off win. But hey, a win is a win. Phil Hughes continued to pitch well, giving up only 3 runs on 7 hits over 7 innings and extended his no-walk streak to 175 batters. Oswaldo Arcia blasted his first home run of the season, and Joe Mauer delivered an RBI single. The real heroics came in the 9th when Arcia nearly missed a second home run with a double off the top of the right-centerfield wall. Eduardo Nunez laced a single to right field and eventually scored on a dribbler off the bat of Danny Santana which Texas closer Joakim Soria bobbled, securing the 3-2 win.
Not much to talk about from Wednesday’s 1-0 shut out. Kyle Gibson pitched 6 scoreless innings to lower his ERA to 4.18 but the Twins scattered only 6 hits and left a total of 16 men on base. Figure it out.
The Twins came up short the final game of the series, losing 5-4. Sam Deduno didn’t pitch particularly well at all, going 5.1 innings and giving up 4 runs on 9 hits. Arcia and Plouffe provided some pop with some hard hit balls, Santana was 3-for-4 with a stolen base and Josh Willingham absolutely destroyed a baseball for his first home run of the year, but it wasn’t enough as the Twins left a total of 20 on base.
- I was happy to see Scott Baker to pitch well at Target Field. I think some Twins have a bad taste in their mouth, but I’ve always liked him. I’m also biased because I watched him pitch at Oklahoma State as well. From Cowboy to Cowboy- good on ya, Scott.
- Brian Dozier has been slumping a bit and is frustrated, as seen by his final at-bat on Thursday afternoon in which he struck out and used the Lord’s name in vain. I have faith that this is merely a slump for Dozier and he’ll be back to watching baseballs sail over the left field wall soon enough.
- Mauer is being booed at Target Field. That happens when you make 23 million dollars a year and don’t perform. The fans have their right to express their feelings. He’s as frustrated about his performance thus far as the fans are. But, based on his career record, I have zero doubt he’ll turn it around soon.
- It’s really great to have Arcia and Willingham back in the lineup. Both players launched their first home runs of the season during the series. At most nearly any other ball park, Arcia would have hit two others. He should continue to hit cleanup in this order. I hope Willingham can find a resurgence similar to his 2012 season, in which he hit 35 long balls. If these two guys can supplement power to this lineup, the Twins can and should be dangerous moving forward.
- Kurt Suzuki needs to be catching and Josmil Pinto, who has the second most home runs on the team, needs to be DHing. Not Jason Kubel. Period.
The Twins (24-27) travel to the Bronx for a 3 game set against the Yankees (28-24).
Phil Hughes start on Sunday marks his return to the Bronx since signing a 3-year deal with Minnesota in the offseason. Yankee Stadium is also a lefty hitter’s paradise, so keep an eye on Arcia’s hot bat through the weekend as well.