Saturday, April 28, 2018

The Hale you say

During my biweekly radio spot on KMSU Thursday I opined that the Twins were going to be OK. They were leading the Yankees at the time with Kyle Gibson looking good, and the lowly Cincinnati Reds were next on the docket.

And then the Yankees got three in the bottom of the ninth to win that game, and on Friday the Reds hit the Twins pitching with the same ugly stick the Yankees used. Eight losses in a row.

David Hale gave the Twins some length out of the bullpen Friday, in exchange for which the Twins designated him for assignment. This may well have been their intent when they landed him -- try to get him through waivers and stash him on the Triple A roster. Presumably his replacement on the active roster, unknown at this point, will be somebody who can go multiple innings if they get yet another short start today or Sunday.

This is a fringe-of-the-roster move and not all that significant in and of itself. Few games are determined by the 12th or 13th pitcher. What is significant is the reason for the roster churn. This will be four pitchers for that spot in five days, and that's because the important pitchers are suddenly ineffective en masse.

It looks, and feels, a lot like 2016. This is a better team than that. They need to perform like it, and soon.

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