Arcia's spiral nears record territory
- Blog Post by: Phil Miller
- June 22, 2014 - 9:19 PM
A handful of extras from the Twins' fourth straight win on Sunday:
HISTORY YOU DON'T WANT: By all accounts, Oswaldo Arcia seems to be holding up well during one of the longest slumps in Twins history. But it can't be easy.
Arcia is 2-for-43 with 17 strikeouts since June 6, and it's gotten even worse in the past week. The Venezuelan slugger was 0-for-4 on Saturday, including two strikeouts, extending his hitless skid to 31 straight at-bats.
That brings him within range of the longest slump in Twins history -- an 0-for-39 blanking in 1978.
THE FIVE AND DIVE: Phil Hughes was upset with himself, but also at umpire D.J. Reyburn, when he had trouble throwing strikes during Chicago's five-run third. But Gardenhire was much angrier.
Reyburn ejected Gardenhire for yelling from the dugout, so the manager came out, kicked dirt on the plate, and shouted briefly at the ump. It was Gardenhire's 69th ejection, and second this year.
"Obviously, I didn't want him to get thrown out of the game, but it's good to know he's behind you," Hughes said. "I was frustrated in the moment. We can laugh at it now, but in the moment, I wasn't a happy camper. ... I guess we both went five-and-dive today."
BAM-BAM-BAM BURTON: The Twins don't designate a substitute for closer Glen Perkins on days when he's unavailable due to heavy workload, but calling upon Jared Burton on Sunday was an easy call, acting manager Terry Steinbach said. "He has some experience at it. It's a situation where he's been there before," Steinbach said.
And it was not, Steinbach also insisted, a reflection of the team's confidence in Casey Fien, after the setup man allowed back-to-back home runs to lose a game in Boston on Wednesday. "Absoutely not. I would be confident putting Fiener back in the ninth," Steinbach said. "It's more of a situation where, Burtie has some experience, and he was more rested."
Burton collected his eighth career save, and first since May 30 of last season, with a 1-2-3 ninth. Said catcher Kurt Suzuki, "He came in and bam-bam-bam. The last three outs, it takes a special person to get those. It's not easy."
STURDY PEN: The blown saves by Casey Fien and Glen Perkins got the most attention this week. But the rest of the bullpen, the middle guys who form a bridge to the closer, has been terrific over the past seven games, going 15 innings without allowing an earned run.
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