Twins call up Jorge Alcala for a potential last stand in bullpen

It’s been an up-and-down season for Jorge Alcala but he’s back with the Twins for a potential last stand.
Boston Red Sox v Minnesota Twins
Boston Red Sox v Minnesota Twins / Brace Hemmelgarn/GettyImages
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For the most part the Minnesota Twins have failed to harness momentum this season. A 12-game winning streak was bookended by losing streaks of five or more games, which has been a general theme throughout the clubhouse.

Bright spots have been clouded by struggles, with guys like Max Kepler and Ryan Jeffers stepping up whole Manuel Margot and Kyle Farmer drag the progress down. Overall the Twins are perfectly mediocre but the frustration lies in how much better they can — and should — be.

Jorge Alcala has come to be one of the embodiments of that. He put together a very impressive Spring Training and made the Opening Day roster as an injury replacement, but one that the team had great confidence in. He’s since struggled to live up to that expectation, which is a troubling theme developing so far in his career.

He was great out of the gate as a rookie, struggled due to injuries, and has been more of a fire hose than the Twins would like. Now he has a chance to make things right and hit a stride he’s shown he’s capable of.

Jorge Alcala is back with the Twins, but is this his last chance?

Already this season he’s been sent down to the minors twice and everyone is hoping the third time so the charm as the Twins recall Alcala for what could be the final time.

There’s so much potential with Alcala and he has a path toward being a truly important piece of the bullpen moving forward. He’s shown that sort of flash more than once over the years, most recently at St. Paul where he owns a 2.08 ERA with 12 strikeouts in 8.2 innings of work. That’s more along the lines of what everyone wants to see, not the mistakes he’s made while in the Majors this year. He hasn’t been a disaster but the situations he been in haven’t ended well and his 3.27 ERA feels worse than it looks.

It’s clear the Twins aren’t ready to give up on him yet, nor should they. Back in 2021 he owned a 0.97 WHIP in almost 60 innings of relief work which laid the foundation for the idea that he could be a key piece of the bullpen. He’s failed to recapture that magic but the Twins have seen pitchers struggle only to eventually figure it out.

Simeon Woods Richardson is the best and latest example of that. He was roughed up over the last two years in limited work but has turned things around this season to carve out a place for himself at then back of the starting rotation. That’s a development that took a while to happen but has been worth the wait, and it happened because the Twins didn’t cut bait too early.

That’s what the hope is for Alcala, who is getting another shot at proving himself in the bullpen but it’s worth wondering just how many chances he’ll get if this doesn’t work out. 

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