Walters' job well done is wasted as Twins fall to Yankees

  • Article by: PHIL MILLER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: July 4, 2013 - 6:57 AM

A brief but crushing rally in the sixth was the righthander's lone blemish as Minnesota's skid reached four games.

view larger photos

  

 

The Twins’ clubhouse had the air of an election-night party for a losing candidate Wednesday. Everybody keeping a stiff upper lip, speaking optimistically about the chances for a miracle — but morbidly mindful of the numbers that just keep piling up.

Numbers like: four, the length of the latest losing streak after their 3-2 loss. Or nine, the games-below .500, tying their season high.

And, for P.J. Walters, six.

That’s the number of starts Walters has made since his last victory. The inning that derailed him Wednesday, after five innings of one-hit pitching. And most important, the number of starting pitchers the Twins will have on Saturday, the day one of them will lose his job.

“Obviously, that’s above my pay grade. But at the same time, all but my last two outings, we’ve had a chance to win,” Walters said bravely, as though hoping those late ballots from the suburbs might turn things around. “That’s my job, to give us a chance and try to win some ballgames. It’s been awhile since I won one — I need to get that going pretty quick.”

If he doesn’t get that chance on the Twins’ upcoming road trip, he can blame CC Sabathia and Robinson Cano, two Yankees still performing at Hall of Fame-type levels. Sabathia had the number of the night: 200, his career victory total after holding the Twins to fewer than four runs for the 15th consecutive start against them. He’s now 11-0 in his past 12 starts, regular season or postseason, against the Twins, and he showed why with the game on the line.

In the third inning, with Joe Mauer on third and Ryan Doumit on first, no outs, and the Twins leading 1-0, Sabathia faced the 4-5-6 hitters in the Twins’ lineup, and Mauer never budged. Strikeout, pop fly, strikeout, and the Twins’ best chance was over.

“We had chances we didn’t capitalize on, me in particular,” said Trevor Plouffe, who later touched Sabathia for a home run in the fifth. “I missed the one pitch he was going to give me. With a guy like CC, you’ve got to score those runs.”

Yep, can’t miss the rare chances a pitcher gives you. You know, like the Yankees. With Walters effectively confusing New York with his 75-mph slider and 88-mph fastball, he opened the sixth with a four-pitch walk to Brett Gardner. “Walking the leadoff guy always seems to turn into trouble,” Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. “Then you run into that mess.”

Ichiro Suzuki started the mess with a double, bringing up Cano, baseball’s hottest non-Puig hitter. He was 18-for-his-last-35 at the moment, and Gardenhire considered simply walking him. But “you really don’t want the go-ahead run with no outs on first base,” he concluded, and Walters was instructed to try to get Cano to chase a ball in the dirt.

He got ahead of Cano 1-2, “and with a base open, I don’t want to let him beat me. I just hung a breaking ball, a pitch I should have bounced,” Walters said with a mournful shrug. “With a 2-2 count, I could still do anything, and if I walk him, oh well. But obviously I hung it — not what I was trying to do there.”

Cano bounced the ball off the wall for a double, driving in two. When Travis Hafner singled, Walters was done. Perhaps done with the Twins for a while.

“For five innings, he was moving the ball. I thought he used his fastball a lot better,” said Gardenhire, who would not comment on the Twins’ impending decision. “He pitched really good. But it got away from him in a hurry.”









 

  • related content

  • BOXSCORE: Yankees 3, Twins 2

    Wednesday July 3, 2013

  • Wednesday's Twins-Yankees recap

    Wednesday July 3, 2013

    GAME RECAPImpact playerRobinson Cano, YankeesWith game-tying, two-run single, the second baseman is 7-for-11 in the first three games of the...

  • Midway point shows regression, not improvement for Twins

    Thursday July 4, 2013

    This season was supposed to be better, and for a while, it was. Two weeks ago, the Twins were three...

  • Postgame: 4-batter stretch undid Walters' night

    Thursday July 4, 2013

    Thielbar's shutdown numbers in relief are nearing historic levels

  • Oswaldo Arcia’s third-inning strikeout was the first of two against for him against CC Sabathia.

  • P.J. Walters headed to the dugout after giving up the tying runs in the sixth inning at Target Field.

  • CC Sabathia looked as sharp against the Twins in the first inning as he did in the seventh, when he threw the last of his 121 pitches.

  • The Twins mulled over some missed opportunities as they watched Mariano Rivera mop up in the ninth.pitch in the ninth inning at Target Field in Minneapolis Min., Wednesday, July 3, 2013 Yankees won 3-2. ] (KYNDELL HARKNESS/STAR TRIBUNE) kyndell.harkness@startribune.com

  • Left fielder Oswaldo Arcia was one especially frustrated Twin, striking out twice against CC Sabathia on Wednesday night.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions
Final(10)2345678910RHE
Chicago WSox «3000000036102
Minnesota100000000390
@Ballpark Replay
Preview | Matchup | Lineup | Log | Wrap | Box
W:D.Webb(6-4) L:L.Oliveros(0-1) S:J.Petricka (11)
HR: CWS- T.Flowers 2 (12), D.Viciedo (18) MIN- K.Vargas (5)

ADVERTISEMENT

Cincinnati - LP: M. Latos 4 FINAL
Baltimore - WP: B. Norris 5
Boston - WP: J. Kelly 9 FINAL
NY Yankees - LP: S. Greene 4
Detroit - WP: P. Coke 4 FINAL
Cleveland - LP: C. Allen 2
NY Mets - WP: J. Niese 8 FINAL
Miami - LP: B. Penny 6
Philadelphia - WP: K. Kendrick 4 FINAL
Atlanta - LP: M. Minor 0
Toronto - WP: R. Dickey 8 FINAL
Tampa Bay - LP: J. Hellickson 2
Milwaukee - LP: Y. Gallardo 1 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - WP: J. Arrieta 7
LA Angels - LP: C. Wilson 3 FINAL
Houston - WP: B. Peacock 8
Chicago WSox - WP: D. Webb 6 FINAL
Minnesota - LP: L. Oliveros 3
Texas - LP: M. Kirkman 1 FINAL
Kansas City - WP: J. Frasor 2
Pittsburgh - LP: J. Locke 4 FINAL
St. Louis - WP: A. Wainwright 6
San Francisco - WP: G. Kontos 12 FINAL
Colorado - LP: M. Belisle 7
Seattle - WP: J. Paxton 6 FINAL
Oakland - LP: S. Gray 5
Washington - LP: D. Fister 1 FINAL
Los Angeles - WP: C. Kershaw 4
Arizona - LP: B. Ziegler 1 FINAL
San Diego - WP: K. Quackenbush 2
Green Bay 9/4/14 7:30 PM
Seattle
Buffalo 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Chicago
New Orleans 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Atlanta
Minnesota 9/7/14 12:00 PM
St. Louis
Cleveland 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Pittsburgh
Jacksonville 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Philadelphia
Oakland 9/7/14 12:00 PM
NY Jets
Cincinnati 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Baltimore
Washington 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Houston
Tennessee 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
New England 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Miami
Carolina 9/7/14 3:25 PM
Tampa Bay
San Francisco 9/7/14 3:25 PM
Dallas
Indianapolis 9/7/14 7:30 PM
Denver
NY Giants 9/8/14 6:10 PM
Detroit
San Diego 9/8/14 9:20 PM
Arizona
Miami-Florida 13 FINAL
(25) Louisville 31
Arizona 9/4/14 7:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Pittsburgh 9/5/14 6:00 PM
Boston College
Washington St 9/5/14 9:30 PM
Nevada
SMU 9/6/14 11:00 AM
North Texas
Fla Atlantic 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(2) Alabama
Buffalo 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Army
(24) Missouri 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Toledo
Arkansas State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Tennessee
(7) McNeese State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(19) Nebraska
Central Mich 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Purdue
Akron 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Penn State
Western Ill 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(18) Wisconsin
(20) Kansas State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Iowa State
(4) Oklahoma 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Tulsa
Western Ky 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Illinois
SC State 9/6/14 11:30 AM
(23) Clemson
Navy 9/6/14 12:00 PM
Temple
UAB 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Miss State
South Alabama 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Kent State
New Mexico St 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Georgia State
Colorado 9/6/14 2:00 PM
Massachusetts
Fresno State 9/6/14 2:00 PM
Utah
(2) Eastern Wash 9/6/14 2:00 PM
Washington
(14) USC 9/6/14 2:30 PM
(13) Stanford
Ohio U 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Kentucky
Middle Tennessee 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Minnesota
Northern Ill 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Northwestern
Missouri State 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Oklahoma State
Ball State 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Iowa
Maryland 9/6/14 2:30 PM
So Florida
Eastern Mich 9/6/14 3:00 PM
Florida
Georgia Tech 9/6/14 3:00 PM
Tulane
(15) Ole Miss 9/6/14 3:30 PM
Vanderbilt
Old Dominion 9/6/14 5:00 PM
NC State
(7) Michigan State 9/6/14 5:30 PM
(3) Oregon
(17) Arizona State 9/6/14 6:00 PM
New Mexico
Louisiana Tech 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Louisiana
San Jose St 9/6/14 6:00 PM
(5) Auburn
East Carolina 9/6/14 6:00 PM
(21) So Carolina
Duke 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Troy
Idaho 9/6/14 6:00 PM
ULM
(15) Sam Houston St 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(12) LSU
Michigan 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(16) Notre Dame
Lamar 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(9) Texas A&M
Northwestern St 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(10) Baylor
BYU 9/6/14 6:30 PM
Texas
Citadel 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(1) Florida State
San Diego St 9/6/14 7:00 PM
(21) North Carolina
Virginia Tech 9/6/14 7:00 PM
(8) Ohio State
Memphis 9/6/14 9:00 PM
(11) UCLA
Colorado State 9/6/14 9:15 PM
Boise State
Air Force 9/6/14 9:15 PM
Wyoming
Oregon State 9/6/14 9:30 PM
Hawaii
Texas Tech 9/6/14 10:00 PM
Texas-El Paso
Toronto 12 FINAL
Hamilton 13
Edmonton 13 FINAL
Calgary 28
Brt Columbia 9/5/14 6:30 PM
Ottawa
Calgary 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Edmonton
Hamilton 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Montreal
Saskatchewan 9/7/14 3:00 PM
Winnipeg
Minnesota 78 FINAL
Phoenix 96
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How sure are you that the Twins are on the road to improving?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close