In less than 24 hours, the Twins have added some credibility to some of the things that were said and written about them this spring.
Those of us who wrote about their expected offensive improvement were looking pretty clueless after they scored six runs in the first four games, all losses.
Chris Parmelee had another two-hit game in Thursday’s 10-9 victory after moving up to the No. 6 spot in the batting order, behind Josh Willingham. Danny Valencia came in batting .143 and had three hits, including an RBI double that added a key insurance run in the eighth inning.
I’m not saying all is rosy for this team. Scott Baker has been lost for the season, and it’s hard to look past what a disappointment Francisco Liriano has been in his first two starts. But in Wednesday night’s 6-5 victory, and again Thursday, there were some definite bright spots.
Burnett does the job
Alex Burnett was one of those bright spots Thursday. The righthander entered with the Twins trailing 6-0 in the sixth inning, so it was hardly a high-leverage appearance. But after giving up an infield single, he retired the next six batters he faced, notching three strikeouts. That bought the Twins time to build another comeback.
“I was just going out there trying to keep the ballgame close and ended up getting that job done,” Burnett said. “I was mixing speeds, throwing some good pitches and keeping the ball down.”
That made it four scoreless innings so far this year for Burnett. His two-inning outing in Saturday’s 8-2 loss at Baltimore was far less smooth, but when he’s on like he was Thursday, it’s easier to understand why the Twins continue to have high hopes for this 24-year-old.