Greetings from Detroit, where if you are driving 70 miles an hour, you are going too slow.
It often takes a rookie pitcher a few starts to settle down and really show what he's got. The Twins are still waiting for Jose Berrios to have an outing when he is at his best and showing why he's one of the top pitching prospects around He has failed to pitch into the seventh inning.
Twins manager Paul Molitor has re-inserted second baseman Brian Dozier, third baseman Trevor Plouffe and catcher Kurt Suzuki back in the starting lineup after the three sat out yesterday's win over Cleveland.
Both the Twins and Tigers need to win in the worst way. For the Twins, they are in a quest to resemble the team that won 83 games last season. They've been encouraged by the last two games, during which their starters went seven innings in both games and they discovered what two out hitting can do for a club.
The Tigers might be trying to win to save Brad Ausmus' job. This is an extension of late last season, when his seat reportedly was warming up. The Tigers have Lloyd McClendon, a Jim Leyland favorite, managing at Class AAA Toledeo. He could be summoned if Tigers brass decides to pull the trigger on Ausmus. Someone even asked me today if Ron Gardenhire could get out of his deal with the Twins.
The Tigers have lost 11 of their last 13 games, and only won last night because J.D. Martinez wasn't called out when he clearly went around while trying to check his swing - then hit a homer.
Twins righthander Kyle Gibson threw a 45-pitch bullpen session on Monday at Target Field, and all went well. He will face live hitters on Thursday before heading out on a minor league rehab assignment that could last three starts. Eduardo Escobar is just about ready to head out on a rehab assignment as well. The Twins are bringing in a pitcher to throw to Escobar at Target Field on Tuesday. Molitor will have an interesting decision on his hands when Escobar comes off the disabled list, because Nunez is playing the best baseball of his career.
Joe Mauer, 1B
Eduardo Nunez, SS
Miguel Sano, RF
Byung Ho Park, DH
Trevor Plouffe, 3B
Brian Dozier, 2B
Eddie Rosario, LF
Kurt Suzuki, C
Danny Santana, CF
Jose Berrios, RHP