Minnesota Twins: Blake Parker latest Twin ousted from bullpen
By Chris Schad
The Minnesota Twins designated the right-hander for assignment, marking the fourth reliever in the past two weeks to be sent out of town.
The Minnesota Twins bullpen is a dangerous place to be right now. Aside from the whiplash that the Twins relievers have experienced from giving up runs in bulk, Minnesota has shipped three relievers out over the past two weeks as they attempt to fix their weakest link. That number became four on Wednesday afternoon when the Twins designated Blake Parker for assignment according to The Athletic’s Dan Hayes.
Parker came over as a free-agent signee from the Los Angeles Angels and got off to a solid start with the Twins in April. Forming a closer by committee with Taylor Rogers, Parker posted a 0.96 ERA in 11 appearances between March and April and an ERA of 3.00 in May. However, Parker’s BABIP of .217 suggested that regression was on the way.
That regression came by force when the calendar turned to June as Parker allowed a slash line of .306/.370/.673 including five home runs. With opposing batters looking like Albert Pujols, Parker took a brief break from the team on the family emergency list and returned with five straight scoreless appearances in July.
Just when it looked like Parker was beginning to figure it out, the final straw came on Wednesday night when the right-hander allowed four earned runs in just 1/3 of an inning in a loss to the New York Yankees.
Parker’s designation marks the fourth reliever to be designated for assignment over the past two weeks as the Twins try to buy time before making a potential move at the July 31 trade deadline. Two of those relievers (Mike Morin, Matt Magill) were traded for cash considerations and Adalberto Mejia was claimed by the Los Angeles Angels, so the hope for getting something meaningful in return for Parker may be slim.
For now, the Twins will try to put another band-aid over the bullpen by calling up Carlos Torres. Torres signed a minor-league contract last month and has put together a 10-year journeyman career in MLB accumulating a career 4.09 ERA. The 36-year old appeared in four games with the Detroit Tigers this season, allowing five earned runs in six innings.