Twins manager Ron Gardenhire made it clear that Matt Capps is still the closer, even though he replaced Capps with Glen Perkins with one out in the ninth inning during Sunday’s 9-7 victory over Milwaukee.
“Cappy’s still our closer,” Gardenhire said. “He’s really fired up right now, I guarantee it. He’s hot at me, and that’s fine. I’ll take it. I’ll wear it. Whatever it takes, but we’re trying to win baseball games.”
Capps, who squandered a three-run, ninth-inning lead in Saturday’s 8-7 loss, was on the field giving high fives after Perkins struck out Fielder and Casey McGehee for his first career save. Still, Capps said it was the first time in his closing career that he’d been pulled in the middle of a save situation.
“Considering Fielder is 0-for-7 with 3 K’s against me, it was pretty hard,” Capps said.
Capps, who has converted 13 of 19 save chances this year, thought he made some good pitches Saturday and Sunday but noted the bloop hits and grounders through the infield.
“I understand [Fielder’s] a dangerous hitter, and it worked out and it looked great, but it’s frustrating for me,” Capps said.
Asked if he was indeed “hot” at Gardenhire, Capps said, “He hasn’t talked to me, hasn’t said a word to me, walked right by me. His job is to make the moves that are best for the team, and that’s what he did. I’ve got no problem with that. It worked out. We won the ballgame. That’s the ultimate goal, and that’s what he did.”