|MINNESOTA ( GIBSON )|
SEATTLE ( RAMIREZ )
|927||MINNESOTA||+130||Ov 8.5,-105||+135||Ov 8.5,+105|
|928||SEATTLE||-140||Un 8.5,-115||-145||Un 8.5,-125|
|vs Left-handed Starters||9-10||+1.6||10-9||4.4||0.255||0.318||5.1||0.280||0.330|
|Past 7 Games||4-3||+3.6||2-5||3.4||0.213||0.274||3.4||0.254||0.311|
|vs Right-handed Starters||33-37||-2.9||34-33||4.0||0.248||0.311||4.4||0.256||0.309|
|Past 7 Games||4-3||-1||3-4||4.1||0.240||0.305||4.0||0.239||0.305|
|7/14/2013||GIBSON(R)||@ NY YANKEES||SABATHIA(L)||10-4||W||187||8.5 un||O||14||9||1||10||9||2|
|7/22/2013||DEDUNO(R)||@ LA ANGELS||BLANTON(R)||4-3||W||150||8.5 un||U||12||10||0||9||10||1|
|7/23/2013||GIBSON(R)||@ LA ANGELS||HANSON(R)||10-3||W||150||8.5 un||O||15||7||0||10||8||0|
|7/24/2013||PELFREY(R)||@ LA ANGELS||WEAVER(R)||0-1||L||215||7.5 ov||U||2||5||0||7||7||0|
|7/25/2013||CORREIA(R)||@ SEATTLE||IWAKUMA(R)||2-8||L||182||7.5 un||O||8||11||0||11||5||3|
|7/26/2013||DIAMOND(L)||@ SEATTLE||HERNANDEZ(R)||3-2||W||225||7 un||U||8||6||1||12||11||0|
|7/27/2013||DEDUNO(R)||@ SEATTLE||HARANG(R)||4-0||W||135||8 un||U||7||10||0||6||7||1|
|7/28/2013||GIBSON(R)||@ SEATTLE||RAMIREZ(L)|| |
|7/30/2013||PELFREY(R)||KANSAS CITY||SANTANA(R)|| |
|7/31/2013||CORREIA(R)||KANSAS CITY||GUTHRIE(R)|| |
|8/1/2013||DIAMOND(L)||KANSAS CITY||SHIELDS(R)|| |
|8/4/2013|| ||HOUSTON|| || |
|7/14/2013||IWAKUMA(R)||LA ANGELS||BLANTON(R)||4-3||W||-115||8 un||U||7||8||0||8||6||0|
|7/19/2013||SAUNDERS(L)||@ HOUSTON||NORRIS(R)||10-7||W||-115||8.5 ov||O||11||10||0||16||11||0|
|7/20/2013||IWAKUMA(R)||@ HOUSTON||BEDARD(L)||4-2||W||-135||8 ov||U||1||3||0||7||7||0|
|7/21/2013||HERNANDEZ(R)||@ HOUSTON||LYLES(R)||12-5||W||-200||7.5 ov||O||13||8||2||9||9||1|
|7/30/2013||SAUNDERS(L)||@ BOSTON||WORKMAN(R)|| |
|7/31/2013||IWAKUMA(R)||@ BOSTON||LACKEY(R)|| |
|8/1/2013||HERNANDEZ(R)||@ BOSTON||DEMPSTER(R)|| |
|8/2/2013||HARANG(R)||@ BALTIMORE||FELDMAN(R)|| |
|8/3/2013||RAMIREZ(L)||@ BALTIMORE||HAMMEL(R)|| |
|8/4/2013|| ||@ BALTIMORE|| || |
|MINNESOTA: HITTING: OF BEN REVERE's slap-and-run style fits well in spacious Target Field. He will compete with lefty Chris Parmelee for the starting RF job. OF DENARD SPAN should be over his concussion problems. He works the count well as a steady presence near the top of the order. C JOE MAUER will see more time at first in an attempt to keep him healthy. Offensively, he'll be limited by a pitcher-friendly home park and no support in the lineup. RYAN DOUMIT has a chance to play regularly and stay healthy as a full-time DH and/or backing up Mauer behind the dish. 1B JUSTIN MORNEAU's concussion symptoms came back late last year. It's a bad omen. OF JOSH WILLINGHAM is being relied on to produce runs, but he's going from one pitcher-friendly home park (Oakland) to another. 3B DANNY VALENCIA showed enough power in 2011 to secure an everyday job heading into 2012. Newly signed SS JAMEY CARROLL has done a nice job off the bench, but hasn't been tested in an everyday role. If hamstring problems are still holding him back, 2B ALEXI CASILLA has won the second-base job ahead of disappointing import TSUYOSHI NISHIOKA, who will start the year in the minors. |
STARTING PITCHING: Who would have thought CARL PAVANO would emerge as the picture of consistency and durability? While he's far from a star, the veteran continues to be a rock for Minnesota, throwing strikes and eating innings. SCOTT BAKER got hurt again last year. If he could ever stay healthy, he's the prototype for success at Target Field'lots of strikeouts, few walks, lots of flyouts. The FRANCISCO LIRIANO rollercoaster nosedived again last year. The Twins have gotten so desperate to keep him healthy that they actually let him pitch more over the offseason. He's obviously a huge risk again. BRIAN DUENSING, NICK BLACKBURN and JASON MARQUIS are all the definition of fifth starter. They serve it up, give up a lot of hard-hit balls, and hope they get hit right at their defenders. If Duensing and Blackburn falter, ANTHONY SWARZAK probably pitched well enough last year to get a shot in the rotation. LIAM HENDRICKS, one of the organization's better prospects, would be a slightly more exciting option.
RELIEF PITCHING: Despite his underwhelming performance last year, MATT CAPPS will pitch the ninth inning again because of his 'closer's experience.' He figures to be on an undeservedly long leash. GLEN PERKINS certainly proved he deserves to close. He was Minnesota's best reliever in his first full season in the 'pen. His velocity was up as a short reliever, and the lefty was truly overpowering. If things go sour for the Twins again this season (and it seems likely they will), perhaps they'll get serious about Perkins later this year.
|SEATTLE: HITTING: C/DH JESUS MONTERO was brought over from the Yankees to hit in the heart of the order. At age 22, his offensive potential is scary. OF ICHIRO SUZUKI is entering the twilight of his career, but he might still have another .300 season left. 2B DUSTIN ACKLEY is the kind of line-drive hitter who fits well in Safeco, but he needs to catch up to MLB pitching. 1B JUSTIN SMOAK has disappointed, but he's making strides and has 30-HR upside. OF CASPER WELLS could play everyday. He won't hit for average, but has the power Seattle needs. MIKE CARP figures to at least grab early at-bats against righties. He'll strike out, but has lots of power. OF FRANKLIN GUTIERREZ is out for at least a month with a pectoral injury, but will reclaim his starting gig based on his defense. Seattle would love to see OF MICHAEL SAUNDERS step up to replace Gutierrez, but he's shown no signs of being able to handle MLB pitching. C MIGUEL OLIVO still has solid power, but he's an all-or-nothing hitter. 3B CHONE FIGGINS isn't quite done, but he's close. He'll have to battle line-drive hitting KYLE SEAGER for a job. SS BRENDAN RYAN will stick around for defense, but his bat is barely good enough for a regular gig. |
STARTING PITCHING: FELIX HERNANDEZ had a touch of bad luck last year, but he's one of the few pitchers in baseball who's a lock for 200 strikeouts. JASON VARGAS just keeps throwing strikes and letting his defense make plays. He'll get by fine again in spacious Safeco. BLAKE BEAVAN doesn't have a strikeout pitch, but he'll make few mistakes and get some outs thanks to a strong defense. HECTOR NOESI, who also came over from New York with Montero, isn't a big strikeout pitcher, but has good control and is savvy enough to get his shot in Seattle's rotation this year. 37-year-old journeyman KEVIN MILLWOOD will fill out the fifth spot in the rotation after a solid spring. Top prospect DANNY HULTZEN could break into the bigs in 2012. The lefty has the polish of a big leaguer right now, though his ceiling is more good-not-great.
RELIEF PITCHING: Like many rebuilding teams, the Mariners will continue to shop their closer. BRANDON LEAGUE will pick up saves in Seattle, but he's more of a groundball pitcher than a strikeout artist. He'd likely be ticketed for a set-up role elsewhere. If League is traded, the closer role is wide open. SHAWN KELLEY came back from Tommy John surgery late last year and looked as good as ever. If he picks up where he left off last year, he'd be an obvious choice for ninth inning duties. CHANCE RUFFIN, part of the Doug Fister trade, has a strong minor-league track record. He could carve out a big role in this bullpen if he can improve his command.
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ PA SPORTSTICKER AL PREVIEW (MINNESOTA-SEATTLE) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ |
*Twins-Mariners Preview* ========================
By NICOLINO DIBENEDETTO STATS Writer
Minnesota (44-56) at Seattle (49-54), 4:10 p.m. EDT
The Minnesota Twins' surge has been sparked by tremendous improvement from the pitching staff, particularly the bullpen.
With rookie Kyle Gibson scheduled to take the mound Sunday, the Twins will likely need the relievers again as they try to continue their hot stretch against the Seattle Mariners.
Minnesota (45-56) has won eight of 11 after compiling a 5.65 ERA during a 1-12 skid.
The pitchers have keyed the turnaround, posting a 2.74 ERA over the last 11 games. The bullpen has been even more impressive with a 1.60 ERA during that stretch.
The relievers were vital to Friday's 3-2, 13-inning win at Seattle, yielding one run over the final 6 1-3. Samuel Deduno made sure the bullpen wasn't needed nearly as long Saturday as he allowed three hits in seven innings of a 4-0 victory.
Although he's struggled to pitch deep into games, Gibson (2-2, 5.72 ERA) has been much better lately.
The rookie right-hander has failed to last beyond the sixth inning in each of his five starts since being promoted from Triple-A Rochester last month, but his last two outings have ended in Twins victories.
That was the case again Tuesday, when Gibson allowed two solo homers in six innings of a 10-3 win in 10 over the Los Angeles Angels.
"I threw seven out of 23 first-pitch strikes, which is pretty bad," Gibson said. "I still need to work ahead in the count, which is something I'm working on."
Brian Dozier continued his hot hitting against the Mariners (49-55) with a solo homer Saturday. The second baseman is 8 for 25 (.320) with two home runs and four RBIs in six meetings this season.
Justin Morneau also homered for one of his two hits Saturday after entering 1 for 14 in his first three games this year against Seattle.
The Mariners are scheduled to send Erasmo Ramirez (1-0, 8.71) to the mound for his third start of the season.
The right-hander allowed three runs in 5 2-3 innings of a 4-3 win over Cleveland on Tuesday. That was a huge improvement over his season debut July 11, when he was tagged for a career-high seven runs and four walks over 4 2-3 innings of an 8-7, extra-inning loss to Boston.
Unlike the Twins, the Mariners' bullpen is struggling during a 1-3 stretch. The relievers have surrendered 11 runs with 11 walks and five homers in 15 1-3 innings over that span, and Yoervis Medina has been a major culprit.
The right-hander has allowed four runs and three homers - one to Dozier - in 1 2-3 innings over the past two games, getting charged with Friday's defeat. He had tossed 11 scoreless innings over his previous 10 appearances.
"He'll be OK," acting manager Robby Thompson said. "I'd rather look at it the other way and say he's only given up three. It just so happens it's been in the last couple days. He's done well and there are no red flags or concerns."
|Last Updated: 9/1/2014 8:17:33 AM EST|