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.

Twins postgame: The revival must start on the mound

Posted by: La Velle E. Neal III Updated: May 11, 2011 - 12:58 AM

The latest walk-fest by the Twins pitching staff on Tuesday now has them more than comfortably on pace to obliterate records for being the walkiest (yes, I made that up) pitching staff in Twins history.

Twins pitchers walked nine on Tuesday and, as a unit have walked 126 batters in 24 innings.

One hundred twenty six. Holy free pass, Batman!

That's an average of 5.25 walks a game. That's a pace for 850 for the season. The club record for crimes committed on a pitching mound is held by the 1982 Twins, who walked 643  batters.

That's nothing compared to what these Twins are doing. That 1982 team, by the way, lost 102 games.

``There is very little that my pitching coach can do for them or I can do for them,'' Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. ``They have to throw the ball over. They have to attack the strike zone and throw the ball over.''

They can wait all they want for Saint Joe, the Hall of Fame slugger and others to come back. They can wait all they want for Justin Morneau to find his mojo.

This team has NO CHANCE if the pitching staff keeps issuing free passes. None.

Gardenhire might be stuck with this group for awhile. He said after the game that they have used everyone on the 40-man roster. While that's not true, they have used every legitimate arm.

The only two on the 40-man roster who haven't been used by the Twins are righthanders David Bromberg and Deolis Guerra, Bromberg is out with a broken forearm. Guerra's ERA is broken at 11.57 at Class AA New Britain.




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