GameChat – Blue Jays @ Twins, 1:10 pm

The Twins will try to avoid a sweep today.

Doesn’t it seem like we’re saying that a lot lately?

I’ll be watching the Vikings, so I probably won’t be paying much attention to what’s going on at Target Field today. Then again, thanks to the Twins and MLB’s blackout policy, it’s not like I have the option of watching the Twins anyway.

As baseball matters go, I’m actually a lot more interested in how the Rochester Red Wings do today. They’re in the 5th game of a best-of-five playoff series with Pawtucket and playing for the chance to advance in the International League postseason.

Anyway, let’s see how Andrew Albers does today. Given how much use the Twins bullpen has gotten lately, I’m sure they could use a 7-8 inning day out of Albers.

 

BLUE JAYS

@

TWINS
Reyes, SS Presley, CF
Davis, R, CF Herrmann, C, C
Lawrie, 3B Dozier, 2B
Lind, DH Arcia, LF
DeRosa, 1B Doumit, DH
Sierra, RF Plouffe, 3B
Arencibia, C Colabello, 1B
Goins, 2B Thomas, C, RF
Pillar, LF Florimon, SS
  _Rogers, E, P   _Albers, A, P
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Toronto 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 2 7 0
Minnesota 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 5 1

Andrew Albers did very well today. Almost everyone else in a Twins uniform did not.

The Twins have now lost 10 straight games at home. Not too hard to understand why there were some audible boos from the Target Field crowd.

GameChat – Blue Jays @ Twins, 6:10 pm

I’ve been so wrapped up in college football today, I almost forgot there was a Twins game tonight.

It’s “Deckstravaganza” at Target Field tonight and there are a number of famous, infamous and notorious Twins social media types enjoying the game from the Budweiser roof deck at the ballpark.

I’m not sure what that has to do with the game itself, but I hope they are all having a good time.

P.S. Per the Strib’s LaVelle E. Neal III’s pre-game blog post, Kernels’ hitting coach Tommy Watkins has joined the Twins’ coaching staff for September. Tommy’s a great guy and it’s terrific that he’s getting this opportunity! – JC

BLUE JAYS

@

TWINS
Reyes, SS Presley, CF
Kawasaki, 2B Mastroianni, RF
Encarnacion, DH Dozier, 2B
Lind, 1B Willingham, DH
Lawrie, 3B Plouffe, 3B
Sierra, RF Arcia, LF
Arencibia, C Colabello, 1B
Gose, CF Pinto, C
Pillar, LF Florimon, SS
  _Happ, P   _Correia, P
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Toronto 5 0 0 0 0 0 2 1 3 11 15 1
Minnesota 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 2 11 0

That was a game that started badly and never got better.

GameChat – Jays @ Twins, 7:10pm

Now, according to the latest Twins radio commercials, begins the “rhyming home series” which includes the Jays, A’s and Rays… of course the Angels have a makeup game in there too but we won’t worry about that if the media guys don’t.

In case you missed it, Joe Mauer has had a return of concussion symptoms which prompted a great post from JC this morning which a) you should read and b) I totally agree with. Joe Mauer should just sit the rest of the season, go home to his girls and get ready to bang it in Feb. There just isn’t enough of this season left to make any justification for the attempt to come back now.

For tonight’s game, I am really intrigued to see RA Dickey back in Minnesota – I was definitely sad to see him go, was ecstatic to see him do well and now I am really curious to see what he does here in Target Field. Let’s go boys!

Toronto

@

Minnesota
Reyes, SS Presley, CF
Davis, R, LF Thomas, C, RF
Encarnacion, DH Dozier, 2B
Lind, 1B Willingham, DH
Lawrie, 3B Plouffe, 3B
Sierra, RF Arcia, LF
Goins, 2B Colabello, 1B
Gose, CF Pinto, C
Thole, C Florimon, SS
  Dickey, P   Pelfrey, P

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Toronto 1 0 5 0 0 0 0 0 0 6 7 2
Minnesota 0 1 0 0 0 0 2 1 1 5 10 2

I’m not really sure what happened, but Mike Pelfrey struggled early and despite a valiant effort in the late innigns, the Twins could not overcome an early 5 run deficit.  Back at it on Saturday evening.

-ERP

GameChat – Twins @ Astros #3, 1:10pm

Our final game against Houston for the year and we have the opportunity to make it a clean sweep… I think that would be fun, don’t you?

Speaking of fun – this video clip of Mastro’s catch made MLB highlights today and it is pretty darn funny. Thanks to Josh Roenicke for the belt…

 

Minnesota

@

Houston
Presley, CF Villar, SS
Mastroianni, LF Altuve, 2B
Dozier, 2B Crowe, LF
Doumit, DH Wallace, 3B
Plouffe, 3B Carter, 1B
Arcia, RF Krauss, DH
Colabello, 1B Barnes, B, CF
Herrmann, C, C Hoes, RF
Florimon, SS Pagnozzi, C
  Hendriks, P   Lyles, P

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

R

H

E

Minnesota

0

0

3

0

0

0

0

1

1

5

7

1

Houston

3

0

0

1

1

0

0

0

1

6

12

0

well that was a lot more frustrating than I care to admit. I must still care about whether we win or lose…

GameChat – Twins @ Astros #2, 7:10pm

Vote for Pedro!  Pedro Hernandez takes the hill for the Twins tonight opposite Jarred Parker.  If three people show up and join us in the GameChat tonight there might be more people in the GameChat than people at Minute Maid Park.

Not a ton of Twins news to report today, but there was a brief journalist spat on Twitter regarding the story of Mark Hamburger signing with the Twins earlier this weekend.  So there’s that.

Go Twins!

Minnesota

@

Houston
Presley, CF Grossman, DH
Mastroianni, LF Altuve, 2B
Dozier, 2B Crowe, LF
Willingham, DH Carter, 1B
Plouffe, 3B Wallace, 3B
Colabello, 1B Hoes, RF
Arcia, RF Barnes, B, CF
Pinto, C Villar, SS
Florimon, SS Clark, C, C
  Hernandez, P, P   Cosart, P
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 R H E
Minnesota 2 0 2 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 3 9 16 1
Houston 0 1 0 0 0 0 2 0 3 0 0 0 6 10 1

 

That win took longer than it should have. It’s not often that Perk blows a 3 run lead in the 9th inning.

In the end, a win is a win, no matter how long it takes.

Trevor Plouffe had a home run and four hits. Josmil Pinto had four hits, too, including a key double in the 12th inning.

But I’m going to award the BOD to Darin Mastroianni, who’s double, also in the 12th inning, drove in two runs. – JC

Darin Mastroianni (Photo: CapitalBabs)

Darin Mastroianni (Photo: CapitalBabs)

GameChat – Twins @ Houston, 1:05pm

Sorry – game actually starts at 1:10..

So I’m back to the cooler climes of Minnesota…. and really glad about it. I still can’t believe I was actually in Arlington during part of the series and still wasn’t able to get over to a game but this was a whirlwind trip and just wasn’t able to get over there..

That being said, I did have friends (all these Minnesotans in Texas in August and September is goofy) at the Rangers series and one is doing the reverse trip that we did and is headed to the Houston game today.. I’ll gladly watch on TV from my 64 degree home. LOL However, it doesn’t appear that the Twins let the southern heat get to them in Arlington so I think they can take Houston on.

But while we are talking about Texas series, how on earth did we manage to take the series from the Rangers??  Looking at this lineup, I feel a little bit like I’m at Spring Training and having to go back to check the lineup card repeatedly because I don’t know the names..

Happy Labor Day every one!

Minnesota

@

Houston
Presley, CF Grossman, LF
Mastroianni, RF Altuve, 2B
Dozier, 2B Castro, Ja, C
Willingham, DH Dominguez, 3B
Plouffe, 3B Carter, 1B
Herrmann, C, C Crowe, RF
Colabello, 1B Barnes, B, CF
Thomas, C, LF Hoes, DH
Florimon, SS Villar, SS
  Albers, A, P   Clemens, P

 

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

R

H

E

Minnesota

0

1

1

2

1

0

0

1

4

10

13

0

Houston

3

2

1

0

0

0

0

0

0

6

13

2

Well that was certainly a come-from-behind win I didn’t expect…

Albers had a horrible start and they ended up bringing in Swarzak right away. The boys managed to start putting some runs on the board (three home runs even) and kept the game closer than you would have guessed at the start – and actually tied it up in the 8th. (we won’t talk about the defense really suffering today..)

I wasn’t sure what to expect at that point and figured a tie was going to end up being a long battle.. Turns out Colabello was having none of that. I’ll take a grand slam in the top of the 9th to break a tie any day! AND it earns him today’s BOD!

Chris Colabello

GameChat – Twins @ Rangers #3, 2:05pm

The Twins called up Josmil Pinto (catcher of the future?!) to take Justin Morneau’s roster spot yesterday, and today one of the players Morneau was traded for, Alex Presley, will make his Twins debut.  That move will give the Twins 26 players on the active roster.

With rosters expanding today, the Twins could add some additional players, but with AAA Rochester fighting for a Wild Card berth, don’t expect the Twins to make too many moves until later this week.

Last night was another frustrating game from the Twins, as for the 2nd time in the span of a week Minnesota failed to capitalize on a strong performance from their starting pitcher.  Correia, who is 0-2 in his last three starts despite a 2.57 ERA, takes the hill against Travis Blackley, a 30 year-old journeyman who’s bounced around between the bullpen and starting rotation.  Blackley is making just his third appearance (all starts) of the season, he’s pitched a total of 10.0 innings with a 4.50 ERA.

If you don’t laugh when you look at today’s Twins lineup, you’re not human.  Ugly, ugly, ugly Sunday lineup.

Go Twins!

 Minnesota

@

Texas
 Presley, CF  Martin, L, CF
 Mastroianni, RF  Profar, SS
 Dozier, 2B  Kinsler, 2B
 Willingham, DH  Beltre, A, DH
 Plouffe, 3B  Rios, RF
 Colabello, 1B  Adduci, LF
 Thomas, C, LF  Baker, Je, 3B
 Pinto, C  Moreland, 1B
 Bernier, SS  Soto, G, C
 _Correia, P  _Blackley, P
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Minnesota 0 0 0 0 3 0 0 1 0 4 12 0
Texas 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 2 7 1

So, the Twins with a lineup that consisted primarily of guys who weren’t on the roster at the beginning of the season beat the Texas Rangers today.

Baseball is a funny game.

It sounds to me like BOD honors come down to one of the new guys, either catcher Josmil Pinto or outfielder Alex Presley. Perusing at the GameChat log, there seemed to be support for Presley, so let’s go that way. Welcome to the Twins, Alex, and keep up the good work. – JC

Alex Presley

Alex Presley

GameChat Twins @ Rangers #2, 7:05pm

The big news today is that the Twins traded Justin Morneau to the Pittsburgh Pirates in return for Alex Presley, a 28 year-old outfielder who is a fringy Major Leaguer, and a player to be named later, or cash.  The PTBNL could be interesting as Pittsburgh is likely attempting to pass another player from their 40-man roster through waivers, so the deal could look much different in a couple of days.  For now, while the return is underwhelming, it is a move the Twins had to make, and Morneau has a chance to play on a team with a real opportunity to win a World Series title.

Justin Morneau

Justin Morneau

Babs is down in Dallas, JC is on the road covering the Kernels, and I’m out for a bike ride with the Twins Bicycle Gang (not a real thing), so no line ups to post this afternoon, but we still have the chat open for anyone that wants to hang out and talk about their favorite memory of #33.

Go Twins!

Minnesota 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 5 0
Texas 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 2 9 0

So close.

Mike Pelfrey went seven innings, striking out seven and giving up just six hits, but it wasn’t enough as the Twins fell on a walk-off bases loaded single in the bottom of the ninth.

We did find out who the PTBNL was in the Morneau trade this evening. The Twins will be getting Duke Welker, a 27 year old,  6′ 7″ AAA pitcher. The Twins sure do like those big guys on the hill. – JC

fg

GameChat – Twins @ Rangers 7:05pm

Roster moves all up in here!

The Twins have placed Samuel Deduno and Wilkin Ramirez on the 15-day DL and recalled Pedro Hernandez (yes, that same ineffective Pedro Hernandez) and Darin Mastroianni to take their places.  Joe Mauer will remain on the 7-day concussion DL for a while longer, and there is really no reason to do much of anything with him as rosters expand on Sunday and then Ron Gardenhire can have any number of catchers on the active roster.

Tonight Twins fans will be treated to Yu Darvish vs. Liam Hendriks.

Go Twins!

 Twins

@

Rangers
 Dozier, 2B  Martin, L, CF
Herrmann, C, C  Andrus, SS
 Morneau, 1B  Kinsler, 2B
 Willingham, LF  Beltre, A, 3B
 Doumit, DH  Pierzynski, C
 Plouffe, 3B  Rios, RF
 Thomas, C, CF  Moreland, 1B
 Mastroianni, RF  Profar, DH
 Florimon, SS  Murphy, Dv, LF
 _Hendriks, P  _Darvish, P
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Minnesota 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 0 0 3 6 1
Texas 0 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 2 6 0

Just about all I read on Twitter today was about how the Twins and Liam Hendriks had NO chance to win against the mighty Texas Rangers and Yu Darvish.

So, imagine my surprise when I check the score after the Kernels’ game tonight and see the Twins and Hendriks beat the Rangers and Darvish.

How could that be?

Seems Mister Hendriks only gave up five hits in six innings and four members of the Twins’ bullpen combined to throw three shutout innings.

Meanwhile, Chris Herrmann and Justin Morneau had back to back home runs off of Darvish. True those home runs constituted 2/3 of the total hits Darvish gave up to the Twins, but so what?

I’m going to call Chris Herrmann the BOD for his two-run dinger. – JC

Chris Herrmann

Chris Herrmann

GameChat – Kansas City @ Minnesota #3, 12:10pm

The Twins will need a victory today to avoid being swept at home by Kansas City.  The Royals came into Minnesota losers of seven of their past nine games, but outside of a strong start by Kevin Correia, they have not looked to least bit challenged by the lowly Minnesota Twins.

The Twins have not hit or pitched well agaisnt the Royals this week, and on the season the Twins are just 4-14 against Kansas City and have been outscored 49-95 (-46), accounting for more than HALF of the Twins current run differential (-90)!

Bruce Chen is on the mound this afternoon for the Royals, and while the Twins have had some success against him in the past (almost a 5 ERA against the Twins in his career), this is not the same Twins team that was beating up on opponents for almost a decade in the 2000′s.  These Twins haven’t scored more than a single run in an inning for almost a week!

Go Twins!

 Royals

@

Twins
 Gordon, A, LF  Dozier, 2B
 Bonifacio, 3B  Florimon, SS
 Hosmer, 1B  Morneau, DH
 Butler, B, DH  Willingham, LF
 Maxwell, RF  Doumit, C
 Kottaras, C  Plouffe, 3B
 Escobar, A, SS  Colabello, 1B
 Getz, 2B  Ramirez, W, RF
 Dyson, J, CF  Thomas, C, CF
 _Chen, B, P  _Deduno, P
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Kansas City 0 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 6 0
Minnesota 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 1 5 0

Well, Brian Dozier hit a home run so that was good. Looks like that’s about it, though. – JC