This is a bad Seattle team, and the Twins should be thinking about sweeping the Mariners and heading into the off day coming off a 4-3 road trip.
Scott Baker won his fifth straight decision and the Twins have won each of his last seven starts. That's interesting because he hasn't been dominant during that run but has been effective. Twins manage Ron Gardenhire thinks it's because Baker is throwing any pitch at any time in the count.
Danny Valencia hit the first triple of his career. He had 11 in 481 minor league games. I know he has just two homers but his willingness to hit the ball up the middle and to the opposite field is encouraging,
Randy Flores made his Twins debut by stranding two inherited runners in the seventh. but he gave up a hit and walk in the eighth, setting the stage for Matt Guerrier's heroics.
Some quick thoughts on Brian Fuentes:
- I think he has a chance to be a very solid upgrade to the Twins bullpen - if they don't expose him to too many righties. I'll admit that's easier said than done. Fuentes has held lefties to a .367 OPS, which is pretty impressive. His OPS against righthanders is .793, largely because all five homers he's given up have been too right-handed hitters.
- Fuentes wasn't too happy with Angels fans as time went on. Guess they haven't forgiven him for the homer he gave up to A-Rod in the ALCS. And all four saves he has blown this season have been at home, Here's what he said about Angels fans: ``It was funny. I felt like I was pitching on the road quite a bit. I came in to a lot of boos, but the fans here come out in droves. They’re here to be entertained. They’re entertained one way or another, through my frustrations or through my success. I felt like I’ve given them a lot more success than failure..''
- Matt Guerrier came in with the bases loaded on Friday and got three big outs. If he can regain his form of the early season, the Twins bullpen could be tough for opponents to deal with in the late innings. Many teams wouldn't mind having Guerrier. Crain, Fuentes and Rauch to choose from in the late innings.
- Yes, his velocity has dropped. But the Twins feel his slider and change up are good enough to get outs. We'll see.
- Don't expect a big name player going to the Angels in return for Fuentes. I asked someone with the club if someone like Juan Portes could be the one dealt and was told it was someone of that caliber.