Results tagged ‘ Luke Hochevar ’
Until the seventh inning of Saturday’s Twins-Royals matchup, both teams had seen their starters struggle but gotten enough big hits to overcome it. Blackburn gave up a few bombs to Rick Ankiel, while the Twins did all their damage in the second inning, including a monster straight-away-center jack from Jim Thome.
Just after Stretch time, though, Orlando Hudson (batting righty) launched a mammoth home run that hit the facing of the second deck out in left field. I didn’t realize that the 32-year old Hudson had that in him! From that point, it was Matty Guerrier for a perfect eighth and Jon Rauch for the Guardado-type (aka tenuous) save.
Another series win already in the books, with a sweep now firmly in the sights.
-I know that it’s still just April, but I’m already ready for the Yankees to come to town in late May. Mark my words: If a sweep happens in that series, it won’t be by the visiting team.
Preview (9-3, 1st, 2.5 GA DET): Luke Hochevar (1-0, 2.84) vs. Carl Pavano (2-0, 1.38).
Weren’t we all afraid this was going to happen? Coming off what is traditionally the hottest part of the season for the Twins, Interleague Play, the Minnesota players and fans came into Kansas City on a high. Sure, we were only a game over .500, but we had been playing better baseball (especially on the road) and still (if only by default) in the AL Central division race. Then we lay on egg against the Royals with our best pitcher on the mound.
Besides a two-run blast from Justin Morneau, the Twins couldn’t muster any offense against KC’s Luke Hochevar. I believe we had one hit through five or six innings against him. Once again, the lineup that can (at times) put some crooked numbers on the board wilted on the road against a team we should handle fairly easily. Not once in the game did two consecutive batters get a hit.
On the flip side, Nick Blackburn pitched a decent game, but seemed to be just a little “off” from his normal self. He wasn’t getting first-pitch strikes, and the hitters seemed to be really teeing-off when they got their pitch (thus the two home runs from Callaspo and Olivo). However, this was probably just the case of a pitcher (as sometimes happens) not having his best stuff, and battling through it. He kept us in the game, at the very least, although with the kind of stink our offense was wallowing in it really wouldn’t have mattered anyway.
Now the pressure is on to win the final two games of this series…as that is what a contending team should do.
Preview (39-39, 2nd, 4.0 GB DET): Scott Baker (5-6, 5.17) vs. Brian Bannister (5-5, 4.17)
The Twins finished up the Interleague Portion of their season today, beating the Cardinals 6-2 behind a strong start from Francisco Liriano and some big hits from Justin Morneau and Jason Kubel.
Looking back, the Twins (once again) really enjoyed this month of NL play, as (just recently) we were one Nick Blackburn gaffe and two Albert Pujols swings away from sweeping both the Brewers and Cardinals ON THE ROAD. The Twins haven’t played that well in an opposing ballpark since guys like Mientkiewicz, Rivas, and Guzman were still lurking around!
Now, though, the test will be whether or not the Twins can parlay this Interleague success back over to the AL. Luckily, the road doesn’t get much easier than in Kansas City, our opponent tomorrow night.
Preview (39-38, 2nd, 4.0 GB DET): Nick Blackburn (6-3, 3.11) vs. Luke Hochevar (2-3, 5.87). The Royals have nothing without Zack Grienke, and we don’t draw him…sweet.
By the way, this guy died today…
Unbelievable. Celebs (Ed McMahon, Farrah Fawcett, Michael Jackson, Mays) are dying at an incredible rate these days.
Unfortunately, this just means that this guy…
…is now the “king” of infomercials. Sad.