DOWN: Blake Parker
Through the first couple months of the season, the Twins bullpen didn’t look too bad. Despite not having an official closer, the Twins were getting by using a closer by committee scenario that was spearheaded by Taylor Rogers and Blake Parker.
Rogers had a small bump in the road last week and had to rest an aching back early this week, but seems to be OK moving forward. In the case of Parker, however, things are trending in the wrong direction.
After starting the year with a 0.96 ERA between March and April, Parker’s ERA went up to 3.00 in May before completely going off the rails with a 12.60 ERA in June. What’s even more dangerous about Parker at this moment is that damage is being done at an absurd rate with opposing hitters compiling a .722 slugging percentage over the past 28 days. By comparison, Babe Ruth‘s career slugging percentage was .690.
With Parker making opposing hitters look like The Great Bambino lately, it adds another layer of crisis to a bullpen that’s veering dangerously close to code red. As of now, the Twins have only signed a developmental reliever to add depth to the relief arsenal, but there’s still plenty of time to make a move. Then again, it’s pretty clear that the Twins need to at least do something.