|Drew Butera (41) and Francisco Liriano in the|
dugout during Tuesday's no-hitter.
"Don't you lie to me, Frankie."
"As a manager, I was bad during the game. I was worse before the game because I made out the lineup.''
Here's Drew Butera on Francisco Lirano saying that he didn't know he had a no-hitter until the eighth inning:
"He’s lying. I think they all realize it."---
The Twins are considering using Thursday's off day to give Liriano an extra day after he threw 123 pitches Tuesday. That pitch count matches his career high, set almost exactly a year earlier (May 2). That was followed by three straight poor outings -- 15.2 innings, 13 runs allowed.
I would be surprised if they didn't give Liriano the extra day.
Matt Capps was warming up in the ninth inning Tuesday, and considering the score (1-0) and the pitch count, I've no doubt that he'd have come in had Liriano given up a hit.
But think about this dilemma that Ron Gardenhire almost had to face. Liriano in the ninth faced a few left-handed hitters: Juan Pierre (who walked) and Adam Dunn (now 0-for-17 versus lefties). Liriano fell behind Dunn 3-0, then got him to line to short to end the game.
What if he'd walked Dunn? Tying run in scoring position, 120-plus pitches, and Paul Konerko up. Do you pull Liriano with the no-hitter intact? Do you let him (admittedly exhausted) face such a dangerous right-handed hitter with the game on the line?
Neither option is particularly appealing.