Phil Miller covered three seasons of Twins baseball, but that was at a different ballpark for a different newspaper. Now Miller returns to the baseball beat after joining the Star Tribune as the Gopher football writer in 2010, and he won't miss the dingy dome for a minute. In addition to the Twins and Gophers, Miller covered the Utah Jazz and the NBA for six years at The Salt Lake Tribune.

Postgame: Strike zone no excuse for Hendriks' latest effort

Posted by: Phil Miller under Twins game coverage Updated: September 8, 2012 - 12:03 AM

Home plate umpire Dan Iassogna appeared to squeeze Liam Hendriks on some pitches Friday night, but neither Hendriks nor Twins manager Ron Gardenhire used the strike zone as an excuse after Friday’s 7-6 loss to Cleveland.

“Their guys had to go through the same thing, so it goes both ways,” Gardenhire said. “If he’s got a tight strike zone, then throw it more over the plate. ... I know [Hendriks is] better than what we’re seeing right now, and we want to get it out of him.”

Hendriks said: “At the end of the day, they’re borderline pitches. If I’m not locating everything in that spot, I kind of don’t deserve it. There were a couple [calls] I thought I could have gotten and there were a couple that [Iassogna] gave me. It’s not a huge thing.”

Some historical perspective

Among MLB pitchers since 1920, Hendriks is tied for the fifth-most starts to open a career without a win, at 16. Here's the list:

Bill Caudill -- 20 (1979-81)
Mike Mohler -- 20 (1993-97)
Craig Anderson -- 17 (1962-64)
Jason Hammel -- 17 (2006-07)
Ray Herbert -- 16 (1950-55)
Liam Hendriks -- 16 (2011-12)
Fred Norman -- 15 (1963-71)
Paul Abbott -- 15 (1990-93)
John Cummings -- 15 (1993-94)

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