Minnesota Twins announce Jose Berrios will start Game 1 of ALDS
By Chris Schad
The Minnesota Twins pitcher endured a rough stretch during the middle of the season, but was tabbed for Game 1 of the ALDS on Friday night.
The 2019 season has been a roller coaster of emotions for the Minnesota Twins and starting pitcher Jose Berrios was no exception. After beginning the year looking like he was ready to take the next step as the team’s ace, a horrendous August and shaky September made it look like he may take a backseat during a potential postseason series.
But as the Twins decided to name their Game 1 starter for the American League Divisional Series a little earlier than anticipated, it will be Berrios who gets the ball as the Twins look to get off on the right track against the New York Yankees on Friday night.
The path to the postseason has been one of Dr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde for Berrios as he looked like a true ace during the first half of the season. During his first 22 starts of the season, Berrios was sharp with a 10-5 record and 2.80 ERA.
While he looked to be the leader of the Twins staff, things fell apart in the final 10 starts of the season with a 5.83 ERA and a huge jump in his walks per nine innings (3.22 in final 10 starts, 1.9 in first 22 starts).
With the rest of the Twins rotation having its own set of question marks, it appears that the Twins will stick to their guns and put their faith in Berrios. As a counter, the Yankees will send James Paxton to the mound, who went 15-6 with a 3.82 ERA.
While Paxton has been solid since coming over from Seattle this past winter, he also has some issues of his own. The left-hander was removed after one inning in his final start of the season on Sept. 28 due to a glute issue, but an MRI revealed it’s not serious and shouldn’t affect his performance in the postseason.
Either way, the Twins and the Yankees will both send their best to the mound on Friday night as they hope to get the upper hand in a series between two teams that had the most historic home run outputs in MLB history.