Saturday, August 9, 2014

May Day! May Day!

Trevor May: 8-6, 2.93
in Triple A with
91 strikeouts
in 95 innings.
Trevor May will make his major league debut today for the Twins at Oakland.

To which I say: It's about blinkin' time.

I'm fairly certain that the righty would have been up about a month ago had he not popped a calf muscle in late June, shortly after being named to the USA team for the Futures Game. He missed several weeks, then had a lengthy "rebuild the arm strength" series of starts marred by rain delays.

And now May gets the Oakland Athletics for his first big league start. Well, it will only get easier from there.

It's a challenging opponent for May not merely because Oakland is one of the best teams in baseball. It's how Oakland is one of the best teams. The A's lead all of baseball in walks drawn. May's greatest weakness on the mound is his control. He's thrown more strikes this year than in the past, but his walk rate in Triple A isn't up to the Twins usual standard. It's easy to imagine him walking the ball park today.

On the other hand, May benefits from what I think of as "Eric Matt Fox Syndrome." Fox was a career minor leaguer who the Twins brought up for a spot start in 2010 against a good Texas Rangers club at a moment when the pitching staff seemed on the verge of self-destructing. Fox was a stranger to the Texas lineup, however, and he gave the Twins the start they needed. (Update: As noted in the comments, I flashed back to the wrong Fox.)

May has never pitched in a league with an Oakland affiliate. He's split his minor league tenure between the Phillies and the Twins systems, and the only overlap either system has with Oakland's is the Twins in the low A Midwest League. But May did his low A time in the South Atlantic League with the Phillies.

So the A's knowledge of May is less than ideal, and that might help him get through a few innings while the hitters find out what he's got.

He'd better throw it for strikes, though.


  1. Wrong Fox. Matt Fox was a Twin. Eric Fox still gives me nightmares. He was the Athletic who hit a 3-run HR off Rick Aguilera at the Metrodome at the end of July in 1992 to all but end any hope of the Twins repeating as AL West champs. He had 5 career HRs and a 56 career OPS+

  2. You're right. I was at the Eric Fox game, too, so I know better. It will be corrected.