Taylor's Twins Talk

Focusing on the Twins, with a few ramblings on other things that catch my attention

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Nightly Notes: Game #9

Well, I don't think I'd want to have the Twins have too many wins that look like the one tonight, but ya know what? A win is a win, and I'll take it. On to tonight's notes:

1.) Two starts in, it's apparent that Carlos Silva has regained some of his pre-2006 form. I'm not a big fan of pitchers who give up a ton of hits, because it makes them way too susceptible to the big inning. Nevertheless, as Dick & Bert pointed out tonight, even the successful version of Silva gives up a lot of hits. The big thing for him through the first two games is that he's been scattering them around, and buckling down to get through innings. The guy should be 2-0, not 0-1 -- unfortunately he's getting about as much run support as Brad Radke used to get. It's not quite time to declare that Silva is reformed and is going to pitch like this regularly, but again, what he's done in these two games (and in his last start of the spring) should be enough to quiet the critics who were saying that his option shouldn't have been picked up.

2.) Alright, luck is a key part of winning close ball games, but for a veteran like Carl Crawford to make multiple mistakes on one key play, as he did following up his double in the 9th? Well, that's just inexcusable. Thanks Carl!

3.) Juan Rincon looked rough and Joe Nathan didn't have a great outing, but Dennys Reyes and Pat Neshek were both very solid. All in all, a reasonable night out of the bullpen. The offense needs to get us more than 3 runs a night, and then two-run bobbles like the one from Rincon tonight wouldn't look quite as bad.

4.) Should Jason Bartlett be worried? Alexi Casilla looks smoother in the field, he's faster, and he's demonstrated over the last couple of days that he can put some pretty good swings on the ball and get a bunt down when necessary. I still think that Bartlett is the shortstop of the immediate future for the Twins, and that Casilla will end up taking over for Luis Castillo either at the end of this season or at the start of next year, but if Bartlett continues to struggle and Casilla continues to impress, this could become a very interesting decision for Ron Gardenhire.

5.) I realize that Torii doubled when he swung at that cartoonish hook thrown by Casey Fossum in the 2nd inning, but what the heck was he even doing taking a swing at that thing? It looked very high and almost certainly would have been a ball, and it can't be a high percentage hack. I think I'd counsel Torii to take that pitch in the future, because frankly he got a little lucky today.

6.) Two homeruns? The TWINS? I thought they forgot how to hit 'em . . .

7.) Once again, I'm not going to comment on this a lot, but it looks like the ballpark situation is quickly moving towards resolution, with the all important condemnation vote going through earlier this week and the plan unveiling happening today. Taking a look at the site plans, I have to say that ballpark looks like it's going to be a great facility.

8.) I mentioned this in the post below, but could Glen Perkins be given a start if Sidney Ponson struggles on Saturday? I think it's a distinct possibility, but I'm guessing Sir Sidney will buckle down and pitch pretty well against the Rays. Incidentally, if Perkins spends the rest of the season with the Twins (possible, but probably unlikely), the Twins would essentially get back the option that they used to send him to Rochester at the beginning of the season. If a player spends fewer than 20 days in a season on optional assignment, no option is used.

9.) The Twins need to stop making guys like Carl Pavano and Casey Fossum look like Cy Young award candidates. Let's get some hits, fellas! Tomorrow, the Twins face Scott Kazmir, who despite his 6.75 ERA this season is the closest of the three pitchers mentioned in this note to actual Cy Young material. Hopefully, the bats will get going early and Santana will be able to work with a lead. There's no reason he shouldn't be 3-0 leaving tomorrow's ballgame.



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