Taylor's Twins Talk

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

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Nightly Notes: Game #120

It would have been very interesting to watch today's game, if for no other reason than to see the Twins finally win a series again. Instead, I'll settle for posting an old-fashioned nightly notes column -- the kind I haven't posted in 10 games. One more thing -- I'll post my last minor league update column tomorrow on the off day. Here are tonight's notes:

1.) First things first -- congratulations to Tommy Watkins for picking up his first major league hit (and adding another one for good measure), as well as his first big league run. I don't know how many more he'll get (I rather expect him to be sent down once Brian Buscher is activated, and even if he returns in September when rosters expand he'll be fighting a rough battle for playing time). Nevertheless, today is a good day for Watkins, and I'd like to see Gardy give him another start on Friday against the Rangers.

2.) Scott Baker seems to respond well to getting pounded -- on the 10th, he gave up 6 runs on 9 hits in 5.1 innings against the Angels, and he bounced back by going 6.1 innings and giving up just 1 run (although on 8 hits, which is rather high). Back on July 6, Baker gave up 7 runs on 9 hits in 5 innings, and then responded by going 6 innings and giving up just 2 runs on 5 hits his next time out. It's not an ideal way to muddle along, but so long as he has performances like the one against Cleveland on the 5th, or today against the Mariners, I'm willing to go along.

3.) After a relatively cool June (.275 BA) and a downright cold August (.239 BA), Torii Hunter has been heating up again in August, including a 5-for-9 stretch over the last two games of the Mariners series.

4.) Jason Bartlett appears to be headed to the DL. As many others have commented today, this is unfortunate because he's been playing fairly well of late. It will be interesting to see what the Twins do with this roster spot.

5.) I would be remiss to not mention the Ramon Ortiz trade, but let's be honest -- this is not deserving of a top billing. Ortiz has been a mere afterthought for months now, and that wasn't going to change. Making this trade made a great deal of sense for the team. In return, they picked up Matt Macri, an infielder who has had a solid season. Macri, who hit .298 this season in AA with some power, is rebounding from a poor 2006 campaign in which he hit .232 in 289 AB's. This seems like a pretty good trade to me -- a completely useless player gone from the roster in exchange for a 25-year-old former 5th round pick. Incidentally, the Twins have obviously liked Macri for awhile -- they drafted him in the 17th round of the 2001 draft, but he elected to go to Notre Dame instead of signing. He was then picked up in 2004 by the Rockies. Kudos to Terry Ryan for making the swap.

6.) Finally, congrats are due to Rondell White for going deep tonight. That .164 batting average is awful, but maybe things are improving. Either way, we fans only have 6 more weeks to worry about whether Rondell White will recover his swing. For now, I'll take the homer.



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