Friday, April 22, 2011

That eighth inning of relief

Glen Perkins: Three
holds on the season.
The way things have gone for the Twins in the first three weeks of the season, it's probably unseemly to carp about anything in Thursday's 3-1 win against Baltimore.

Still, there were problems in the set-up work.

Scott Baker went seven innings (105 pitches) and left with a 3-0 lead. Jose Mijares retired one man, walked the next, threw ball one to the third and got a popup. Six balls, six strikes -- which is part of why Mijares remains pigeonholed in the LOOGY role.

In came Jim Hoey. He face two right-handed hitters and threw five pitches, all of them (according to the feed) fastballs around 94 mph. Three of them were called balls, the other two became a double and a single. In Hoey's previous outing, also against Baltimore (his old team), he threw some offspeed pitches. On Thursday it was all hard stuff, and he either missed with it or got hit.

With another lefty coming up, Glen Perkins got the call, and got the inning-ending out on one pitch.

It was a ragged inning. The job got done, but the flaws in Mijares and Hoey were exposed. Perkins, on the other hand, continues to impress.


As you may recall, I posted to this blog before the home opener from the right-field stands but quickly ran into problems with Target Field's "Twi-Fi." The Pioneer Press' tech writer has a piece here on the challenges in the system. As I suspected, it was overwhelmed at the opener, and it's apparently getting better but remains a work in progress.

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