Three extras from the end of the winning streak:
— It was a disappointing result, but Trevor May discovered something that might be a big help in future starts. “I was able to get the curveball over for strikes, probably for the first time this year,” May said after suffering a 2-1 loss to Oakland. “I was confident in it. I was able to throw it where i wanted to.” That meant that he was able to keep the A’s off-balance, especially since scouting reports surely indicate that May doesn’t use that off-speed pitch in difficult situations. “They kind of showed us they want to jump on fastballs, so we tried to pitch away from that.” It worked well; May, like Oakland starter Jesse Chavez, never surrendered an extra-base hit, or even more than an occasional hard-hit ball. And he stretched his streak of innings without allowing a home run to 24 in a row, dating back to his second inning of the season, back on April 13.
— Brian Duensing allowed four hits while recording three outs, but it sounded like manager Paul Molitor believes that’s a result of the intercostal strain that kept Duensing out for two weeks. It’s not the injury, but the time off that’s the problem, Molitor said. “We’re trying to ease him back,” Molitor said, but Duensing has only worked two innings since being activated. Molitor took some solace in the fact that none of the hits off Duensing (all singles) were hit particularly hard. Still, it’s worth watching, given that the rest of the bullpen didn’t allow a baserunner.
— The postgame discussion was about the Twins’ roster move, and in particular the promotion of Doug Bernier to replace Eduardo Nunez. Bernier is 34 and is a terrific (and versatile) fielder, but he hasn’t shown to be much of a threat at the plate. Molitor and general manager Terry Ryan said they considered Josmil Pinto and Aaron Hicks for the spot that went to Eddie Rosario, so it was something of a surprise that one of those hitters, each of whom is batting over .300 at Rochester, didn’t get the call, with Eduardo Escobar able to handle backup infield duties. But perhaps the Twins fear that that position won’t get many at-bats — Nunez has only 22 this year, after all, fewest on the team — so they don’t want a prospect sitting on the bench. And it might also be an indication that they feel the infield defense needs to be shored up, given that Danny Santana has committed nine errors already.