Monday, April 9, 2018

Watching an #OldFriend

Brandon Kintzler is something of a "the one that got away" for me, and it's a bit strange because I am fully aware of his limitations as a pitcher.

I don't know that the Twins front office prefers Fernando Rodney to him, but I believe they do. Rodney has the better strikeout rate, and that, sabermetrically, is more important in 2010s baseball than Kintzler's lower walk rate. I still prefer Kintzler to Rodney, myself.

Anyway, the Twins signed Rodney and the Nationals signed Kintzler, and Rodney has the ninth inning in Minnesota and Kintzler is a setup guy in Washington, and presumably everybody's happy except the blogger in Mankato.

Late Sunday night I was watching the Mets and Nats go extra innings on a cold night in D.C., and in comes Kintzler for the top of the 11th.  The ESPN crew said that Washington had hoped not to use Kintzler Sunday; he had pitched the day before and twice in three days and been roughed up both times.

And he took the loss Sunday. A bloop hit, a sac bunt, an intentional walk and a broken bat single plated the go-head run for New York. Then he got the ground ball and the double play, but the Nats couldn't tie it in the bottom of the inning.

What I saw, in short, was the Brandon Kintzler we saw with the Twins. Everybody made contact, nobody hit the ball hard, and the breaks went against him. It happens.

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