La Velle E. Neal III has covered baseball for the Star Tribune since 1998 (the post-Knoblauch era). Born and raised in Chicago, he grew up following the White Sox and hating the Cubs. He attended both the University of Illinois and Illinois-Chicago and began his baseball writing career at the Kansas City Star. He can be heard occasionally on KFAN radio, lending his great baseball mind to Paul Allen and other hosts. Mark Rosen borrows him occasionally for WCCO-TV.

Three Twins postgame thoughts from LEN3: No-hit bids, Baseball Gods, Arcia

Posted by: La Velle E. Neal III Updated: May 24, 2013 - 11:22 PM


Here are three thoughts following the Twins' 6-0 loss to Detroit


1. I THOUGHT A NO-HITTER COULD HAPPEN: I've seen three no-hitters in my lifetime, and there was a point during each one where I thought, `here it comes.' When I watched Bret Saberhagen no-hit the White Sox in Kansas City, the feeling came around the fifth inning. When I covered David Wells' perfect game against the Twins, I sensed history in the second inning (the Twins had Jon Shave in the lineup that day, after all). Eric Milton's no-hit feeling came around the sixth or seventh - many of us were grumbling about the 11 a.m. start so the Gophers could play football that night. When Anibal Sanchez struck out the side in the fourth inning, I thought the Twins were in trouble. Sanchez was nasty for most of the game. He got a little sloppy late but still had momentum. Mauer has broken up three no-hit bids now. Only Cesar Tovar (four) has done it more times in Twins history.

2. DEDUNO: He said he had trouble getting the feel for his breaking ball, and anyone who watched the World Baseball Classic knows how much he throws that pitch. The breaking ball improved as his outing went. And he still had that fastball. ``Nobody really squared him up,'' Mauer said. Deduno, however, made a mess of the second inning. He was late covering first on a grounder to first and missed a chance at an inning-ending double play. Instead, Don Kelly was safe. Avisail Garcia hit a bouncer toward the mound, and Deduno missed it - another chance to end the inning. Andy Dirks hit a grounder up the middle. The ball started rolling out of Eduardo Escobar's glove as he fielded it, so I don't think he got a good handle on it to get his best flip throw off. Still, Garcia looked out but was called safe. You know what, though? The Baseball Gods were punishing Deduno at this point for poor fielding. And Miggy ends up getting an RBI single. Deduno ended up throwing 28 more pitches after failing to cover first. And another Twins starter fails to pitch six innings.

3. ARCIA SENT DOWN: Too bad to see Oswaldo Arcia get sent down. I like watching him hit. But he will be back. What will be interesting is seeing who is taken off the 40-man roster to make room for P.J. Walters so he can start tomorrow.

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