Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Bobby Wilson, RBI machine, and other thoughts

Bobby Wilson, who caught Sunday afternoon, caught again Monday night. Apparently the idea was:

  • With another day game today, the two catchers were going to split the starts
  • Wilson has caught Fernando Romero before, and Mitch Garver hasn't.

So Dick Bremer said. I know I was at a spring training game in Port Charlotte in which Garver was in the lineup and Romero pitched, but Garver may have been subbed for the by the time Romero entered. Anyway, Wilson apparently caught Romero once during their joint time in Rochester; Willians Astudillo had the bulk of the work.

Wilson was solid back there. And the light hitter even drove in a pair of runs, with a sac fly and a softly hit but well-placed double. (And then he got thrown out at the plate, because somebody apparently forgot that he's a 35-year-old catcher.)

Which leads me to a third reason, this one unstated by Bremer, to start Wilson in Monday's game and Garver today: Carlos Martinez is a higher quality pitcher than John Gant. Garver is a higher quality hitter than Wilson. Paul Molitor may well have figured that they could score enough runs against Gant without Garver, but they would need Garver against Martinez.


I switched back and forth between the FSN broadcast and the ESPN version, partly because I wanted to hear a non-local perspective on Fernando Romero. Executive summary: Rick Sutcliffe predicted Romero will finish the season as the Twins closer.

I wouldn't turn to Sutcliffe for insight in the Twins' thinking, but even if this was just an off-the-top-of-his-head comment, I get the idea:

  • Whenever Ervin Santana returns, the Twins will have four veteran starters in the rotation (Santana, Jake Odorizzi, Kyle Gibson, Lance Lynn) plus Jose Berrios.
  • As I said after Romero's first start, the Twins almost certainly want to limit his innings to 150 or so. Left in the rotation he'll get there by season's end, and the Twins certainly aren't out of the playoff hunt.
  • His power arm would play well in relief.
But we're some ways away from that decision. Santana, to my knowledge, has yet to officially begin a rehab assignment. I doubt he'll be back in the majors this month. This is the sort of issue -- oh, we have too many starters -- that tends to solve itself. 


So the Twins have won four straight. Three of them came against the Chicago White Sox, who are not a good team. This one came against a team that played 14 innings (with two rain delays) Sunday night. At least the Cardinals didn't have to travel.

A win's a win, and the Twins have lost too many games they should have won already. I'm not declaring their problems solved.

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