GameChat – Twins @ Rays, 6:10 pm

After two sweeps in a row, I hope our boys are in the right frame of mind to take on one of the hottest teams in baseball right now.  I think this promises to be a very exciting series!  Let’s start it off right, Pavano!

Minnesota @ Tampa Bay
Span, CF   Jaso, J, C
Casilla, A, 2B   Crawford, LF
Young, D, LF   Longoria, 3B
Kubel, RF   Aybar, W, DH
Cuddyer, 1B   Joyce, RF
Thome, DH   Upton, B, CF
Valencia, 3B   Rodriguez, S, 1B
Hardy, SS   Brignac, R, 2B
Butera, C   Bartlett, SS
  Pavano, P     Hellickson, P


  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Minnesota 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 2 4 1
Tampa Bay 0 0 1 0 3 0 0 0 x 4 10 0


 Jeremy Hellickson, the rookie who completely baffled the supposed-to-be-powerful Twins offense Monday night in his Major League debut was given the traditional beer shower by his team mates and then given a ticket back to Durham, NC. Yes, the Rays are so good that they don’t need a pitcher who can shut down the Twins on 3 hits in 7 innings.

Fortunately for the Rochester Red Wings, they’re finished playing Durham this year. They saw enough of him in May. He beat the Red Wings twice that month. The game on May 3 got off to a good start as Matt Tolbert led off the bottom of the first inning with a home run off Hellickson. Danny Valencia would get an RBI double later in the game and those would be the only runs the Wings scored as they fell 10-2. Hellickson struck out 8 in 7 innings. On may 30, he also went 7 innings against Rochester in Durham’s 6-0 shutout, striking out “only” 7. He gave up only 4 hits in each of those games. That’s not much… but then it’s one more hit than the Twins managed against him last night in the same 7 innings. Maybe we needed Tolbert in the line up.

Too bad the Twins didn’t keep this Des Moines native in the upper Midwest! – JC