Scott Baker threw 7 innings yesterday, allowed only 4 hits, struck out 9, walked 1, and the only run he allowed came in the 8th inning when a sacrifice fly was hit off of Pat Neshek. I’m just glad we didn’t waste a start like that, from our 5th starter. He doesn’t seem to have his head on straight, and to be honest I’m not optimistic that he can string two quality starts together. He had 9 Ks through 5 innings and that is a career high for him.
It was a pretty big pitcher’s duel with both starters combining for 15 innings pitched and 10 hits allowed. The Twins got 3 hits in the 12th to give them 9 on the night, which is kind of a high number for only 2 runs scored. But everybody in the lineup except Mike Redmond and Nick Punto got a hit, and nobody had more than 1. Lew Ford had a pinch-hit single in the 12th and Jeff Cirillo hit the game-winning, pinch-hit bloop single to center. It’s funny though, he doesn’t fit the Twins’ criteria for “good, clubhouse guys who don’t really play good baseball” like a Luis Rodriguez or Rondell White, or even Phil Nevin from last season. Cirillo was quoted last night, after the game was over, as saying “So it’s weird that you’re celebrating a hit but it’s a bloop hit. But we’re like, ‘Whatever, all right, let’s jump up and down and go home.'” I’m not sure how any of you readers interpret that, but it seems to me like he didn’t really care, or it wasn’t a big deal to him. He has complained about playing time, saying he’s only a backup, but it’s just kind of a weird situation.
Dennys Reyes, Pat Neshek, Joe Nathan, and Juan Rincon threw 5 innings of hitless baseball last night to help keep the team in the game. Pat and Joe each struck out 3, but Joe was able to go 2 innings to further help the bullpen rest. Juan needed just 6 pitches to get out of his inning, and he got the official win.
Tonight’s game starts at 7:10 and we have Boof Bonser starting for us. The pitcher we’re facing is 2-5 this season with an ERA of 5.75, but he doesn’t walk a lot of people and his strikeout numbers are pretty good. He allowed 11 hits in 4 innings in his last start, so hopefully we can get the bats going early against him.