Minnesota Twins: Series to Forget in Detroit, Onto Chicago
By Brennen Rupp
This isn’t the start that new Minnesota Twins manager, Paul Molitor had in mind. The Twins fell to the Detroit Tigers in the finale of a three game series today, 7-1. The good news is, the Twins scored their first run of the 2015 season. The bad news is they were outscored 22-1 in Detroit and have started the season 0-3.
The Twins offense has been lackluster. They’ve put together 14 hits, one run and two extra base hits.
For how bad the offense has been, the starting pitching the past two games hasn’t been much better. Following a game in which Ricky Nolasco lasted only three innings and gave up six runs. Today’s starting pitcher, Kyle Gibson lasted only 3.2 innings, giving up eight hits, six earned runs and issuing five walks. When Gibson is good, he is good. When he is bad, he’s really bad. Gibson had a 1.42 earned run average in his 13 wins in 2014. During his 12 losses, he posted a less than stellar 11.04 earned run average. The Twins got the “bad” Gibson today.
The Twins head south to take on division rival, the Chicago White Sox. The Sox are also 0-3 and are looking to break into the win column.
Players to Watch
1. Danny Santana– The Twins leadoff hitter has started the season 0-12 with five strikeouts. Santana is supposed to be the tone setter. If he starts the series off with another strikeout, it could have a ripple effect. Santana needs to string together good at bats and forget about the Detroit series.
2. Mike Pelfrey– The veteran starting pitcher was getting ready to work out of the bullpen after losing out to Tommy Milone for the final spot in the rotation. Then came the Ervin Santana suspension. While it was a negative thing for the rest of the team, Pelfrey likely sent Santana a fruit basket. Thanks to Santana’s suspension Pelfrey gets a chance to be a starter. What will Pelfrey do with his new lease on life?
3. Joe Mauer– Following a dreadful start to the 2015 campaign the Twins need their best player to step up and help get the ball rolling in the other direction. Mauer has hit safely in all three games, going 3-10 with a walk. All three hits have been singles. The Twins need Mauer to start hitting those doubles that we all grew accustomed to seeing earlier in his career.
Mar 23, 2015; Clearwater, FL, USA; Minnesota Twins starting pitcher Mike Pelfrey (37) throws a pitch during the first inning of a spring training baseball game against the Philadelphia Phillies at Bright House Field. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports
Probable Pitching Matchups
04/10-Tommy Milone vs Hector Noesi
04/11-Mike Pelfrey vs Jeff Samardzija
04/12-Phil Hughes vs Chris Sale
Both the Twins and White Sox are 0-3 and something has to give in Chicago. The Twins need Milone to take the mound in the series opener and have a quality start. The past two games the Twins starting pitchers haven’t lasted past the third inning. On the flip side, the Twins offense has to produce runs early to get the confidence back. If the Twins fall behind early in the first game of the series, it could be a long weekend in the Windy City.
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