There were more beanball shenanigans today.
Rangers infielder Jurickson Profar was hit three times on Saturday, tying a Rangers record. He was hit by Jake Odorizzi in the second inning as Odorizzi slipped on the mound. He was hit by Matt Magill in the fourth, but the Twins felt the pitch was close to a strike and Profar was crowding the plate. Profar then stole second - with the Rangers leading 9-2 at the time.
Then Addison Reed hit Profar in the seventh, making it appear it was related to the stolen base.
"It's the fourth inning," Rangers manager Jeff Banister said. "We're still playing baseball. He stole second base in that situation that I didn't think was an unnecessary situation, in my opinion. There's still a lot of game to be played."
Twins manager Paul Molitor had a different view.
"The thought process between the unwritten rules of the game is not clearly defined," he said. "What I might think and what he might think might be different things. I was surprised that [Profar] ran with the score the way it was, when he did. And getting hit there was something that Banister felt wasn't appropriate."
Given the state of the Rangers bullpen, I can totally see why they would want to keep the foot on the pedal. But some teams see a seven run lead and think differently. But, man, the Rangers bullpen is not good.
Anyway, Banister had more to say on the subject:
"There's still a lot of game to be played," he said. "You look at how the game ended. You've got to continue to play the baseball game. I thought the intent there, he'd already been hit twice. I thought the intent there was excessive, especially they tried to dial him up three different times. The guy's playing baseball hard. I guess you can just look at it that there's a difference in what they're focusing in on and what we're focusing in on."
Did he think Reed should have been tossed?: "I'm not the keeper of any rules."
On why they didn't retaliate (although Profar might have been retaliating by stealing second base): "We're trying to win baseball games. We're not going to get caught up in anything other than that." [That's a veiled shot at the Twins].
"No, I wasn't happy about it at all. You can tell by my comments I'm not happy about it. You get three opportunities to hit a guy?"
Busenitz called up
The Twins need a reliever to get them through the next few games - Sunday, mostly - and will call up righthander Alan Busenitz from Class AAA Rochester.
Busenitz, has a 1.95 for the Red Wings and recently had a 211/3 inning scoreless streak. He hasn't appeared in a game since Wednesday, so he's rested, and can pitch a couple innings at a time for them.
He's pitched 35 2/3 innings for the Twins. He gave up three runs over eight innings during an April shift. He can throw in the mid-90s and has a good curveball. He just needs experience. After giving up at least eight runs in each of the last three games, the Twins need a fresh arm.
Righthander Fernando Romero was optioned to Class AAA Rochester to make room for Busenitz.
Romero, in 10 starts, went 3-3 with a 4.38 ERA, showing a big arm that should be part of the Twins immediate future. In 511/3 innings, he walked 19 and struck out 44 - numbers that the Twins expect will improve as he grows.
"There’s been a lot of good things for him," Twins manager Paul Molitor said. "A young man who’s still learning how to use his skills at the best level up here and learning control of the game. We’re going to need a replacement for a little bit of replenishment for that ‘pen tomorrow."
I mentioned in the dead tree edition that righthander Aaron Slegers could get the nod to start for the Twins on Thursday in Chicago because he's in line to pitch that day and would essentially stepping for Romero. The Twins are unpredictable with these things. They could call up lefthander Stephen Gonsalves for Thursday. He would have an extra day of rest, which isn't a bad thing.
And, as I've seen it done to the Twins many times through the years, the unknown rookie lefthander can be a pain in the you-know-what.