Saturday, April 12, 2008

Game 10

Game Date: April 11, 2008
Twins 5, Royals 0 / Box Score
WP: Hernandez (3-0), LP: Meche (0-2)
Royal Home Runs: None
Royals Record: 6-4

So the question today will probably be, what's wrong with Gil Meche? He's off to a rocky start and the critics are sure to come calling--even if they had to wait a year. Meche has just one quality start in his first three outings this year. He's falling behind too many guys. He's walking too many guys. He's throwing too many pitches. And he's giving up too many runs. Just check out his 7.13 ERA. But in my opinion, he deserves the benefit of the doubt after last season. Let's see what happens as the weather warms up.

Last night, Livan Hernandez stymied the Royals for the second time this season. He's done that to a lot of teams over the years. But the Royals had their chances. In the fifth inning, with the Twins ahead 5-0, the Royals had the bases loaded with one out. Hernandez threw a slow curve that brought back memories of Zack Greinke's first season or two and struck out Jose Guillen--who still hasn't hit a home run yet. Billy Butler had a chance to pick Guillen up, but he grounded out to shortstop and the threat was over. The Royals weren't a factor after that.

On defense, Mark Teahen made yet another bad read on a ball in the second inning on a line drive hit his way off the bat of Carlos Gomez. Teahen took a step in and then realized it was going to be over his head. Gomez ended up with a two-run double. Teahen will probably eventually get a better feel for left field, but I'm still a little irritated that he's out there to begin with. It's clearly not his best position and arguably it's not even his second best position, given the way he played in right field last year. But these are the cards he's been dealt, so let's hope he figures out left field soon.

It looks like the swap that Trey Hillman made in the batting order between Mark Teahen and Alex Gordon is paying off. I couldn't figure out why he had Gordon penciled in the three hole to begin with, but now that he's hitting behind Butler, he looks relaxed and he has average up to .317. He had two more hits last night. And Teahen had a hit and a walk. He's hitting .343. Now if Guillen would start hitting, we might start scoring a few more runs.

Yasuhiko Yabuta threw more pitches (38) than I'd like to see in two innings, but he didn't give up any runs, keeping his scoreless streak alive. Ramon Ramirez threw a scoreless inning as well, and like Yabuta, he has yet to give up an earned run this season.

Tonight, Brett Tomko (1-0, 1.29) goes up against Boof Bonser (0-2, 4.15). Tomko is 4-0 in his career against the Twins with a 4.41 ERA. Bonser is 2-5 against the Royals with a 4.61 ERA.

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