Obviously, the top story today is Kevin Slowey out dueling Ben Sheets as he went a full nine innings while only surrendering three hits and striking out eight. And, oh yeah, he didn’t walk a batter. There were other great performances today as well. Let’s dive into some other thoughts:
-Slowey’s start is his fourth magnificent start in a row. He has given up only three runs in his last four games. (Against the Padres, Nationals, and two against the Brewers.) His ERA during that stretch is 0.93. His ERA drops to 3.47 after this most regem.
-Alexi Casilla was back in the lineup today after being lifted from Friday’s game with an injury. I don’t think there are any after effects. He went 2-4 with an RBI double in the seventh.
-Michael Cuddyer, on the other hand will be forced to sit out at least 15 games with a strained tendon on his left index finger. Gardy says Cuddy is frustrated, which is a good thing. It will get him working harder and he will have his mind set on returning as soon as possible.
-Denard Span has been recalled from Rochester, and will take over for Cuddyer. The good news is that Kubel will be allowed to DH, which, in turn, allows Monroe to sit on the bench where he belongs. I think one of the more important moves Minnesota will have to make this year, if they want to contend, is cutting ties with Monroe and allowing Span to sit on the bench and be the fourth outfielder.
-Carlos Gomez only had one hit today, but what a hit it was. In the fifth inning Gomez tripled, scoring Brian Buscher. While Gomez still isn’t racking up the hits, he is getting better plate discipline. That’s a start anyway. By 2010 he should be among league leaders in…something…
-Brian Buscher is a freak of nature. He had another hit today and came around and scored on the aformentioned Gomez triple. His average is now .352 and he is getting closer to being able to qualify for the batting race, (but he’s still quite a ways off.)
-Delmon Young hit another two-run homer today, his second on the year. Maybe he will actually remember that stroke this time. After hitting his first dinger on June 7th Young has gone 18 games since going yard again, granted he didn’t have an official at-bat in six of those games.)
-Ben Sheets has lost for the first time in eight starts. There’s another streak that has ended. Here’s to another long win streak for the Twins! 1-0 so far!
Tomorrow Detroit comes to town and Minnesota will look to pick on the recently “tamed Tigers”. (Sorry for that horrible alliteration/metaphor, but I just couldn’t help myself.)
First pitch is 8:10 EST. Glen Perkins (4-2, 4.47) will look to rebound from previous poor starts as he faces off against the surprisingly strong Armando Galarraga (7-2, 3.32), who could possibly have the best name in baseball.