Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Michael Cuddyer, ace pitcher

The MLB.com pitch-tracking system didn't know what
to do with Michael Cuddyer's offerings. It classified a high
proportion of his pitches as change-ups — upper 80s change-ups.
Michael Cuddyer wasn't the most effective pitcher the Twins sent to the mound Monday night. It only seemed that way.

Cuddy worked a scoreless eighth inning — scoreless despite the "efforts" of his defense, notably shortstop Tsuyoshi Nishioka, who allowed a popup to drop in short center for a leadoff hit and later bumped with left fielder Trevor Plouffe on the inning-ending popup.

Cuddyer wasn't the only pitcher who wasn't charged with a run allowed in the Twins 20-6 loss to Texas. Phil Dumatrait went 1.2 scoreless innings (although he did allow two inherited runners to score). Dumatrait got five outs and allowed four baserunners (three hits, one walk); Cuddyer got three outs and allowed three runners. And Dumatrait had the better strike-to-ball ratio.

But then, he should. Unlike Cuddyer, Dumatrait's a professional pitcher. So are Nick Blackburn, Jose Mijares, Chuck James and Alex Burnett, and they all were brutal Monday night.

Dumatrait was the fourth pitcher Ron Gardenhire called upon. He was the first to have a batting average allowed for the game under .500. It was merely .375.

Texas batted .519 for the game.

The one good thing about the fiasco — other than that Cuddyer didn't blow out an elbow ligament — is that Gardenhire protected the three men at the end of the bullpen. Glen Perkins, Matt Capps and Joe Nathan didn't waste any pitches in a lost cause.


  1. How much higher can Cuddyer's value go? He can play every three infield positions, two in the outfield, and pitch in blow-outs. Dangle him, dangle him, dangle him.

  2. He catches too, doesn't he? Why not have some fun and play him at every position this season.