NEW YORK — Jake Odorizzi sort of alternated Monday between annoyance at himself and self-reassurance that it’s only April, it’s only one game, it’s only a four-game skid.
“There’s still quiet optimism” in the clubhouse, the Twins’ righthander said, “even though the last couple games have been sketchy.”
It doesn’t get much more sketchy than 14-1 — the Twins’ most lopsided loss since 2015, and worst against New York since 2003 — and Odorizzi was clearly bothered by his own role in it, particularly during a 34-pitch first inning. With two outs and a runner on base, he got ahead of Giancarlo Stanton 0-and-2, but walked him. That opened the door for Gary Sanchez, who took advantage by blasting a two-run double. Then Odorizzi got ahead of Aaron Hicks 0-2 — and couldn’t put him away, either, surrendering an RBI single on a 3-2 pitch.
That inning spelled doom for the Twins, who haven’t won since last Wednesday’s marathon in San Juan. “I take pride in stopping streaks like this. It’s something where I give myself a little extra energy to stop a losing streak. But I wasn’t able to do that tonight,” Odorizzi said after falling to 1-2 on the season, his ERA now 4.50. “They’re a good club, but I didn’t have my best stuff tonight. I just didn’t do my job, that’s what it boils down to. We have three more games, so a lot of series left, and a lot of season left.”
Odorizzi gave up another run in the second inning, on a long home run by Miguel Andujar, but he retired 11 of the next 13 hitters before Stanton came up again in the fifth. Once again, he got ahead 0-2. Once again, he couldn’t put Stanton away. And when the count reached 2-2, Odorizzi tried a curveball that hung high in the strike zone. It landed in the bleachers.
“I tried to bounce that one to the plate, but it slipped out of the back of my hand and went down the middle. It wasn’t a pitch I was trying to throw at that location,” Odorizzi said. “It was just a mistake, and it feels like for me, all my mistakes are getting hammered right now.”