Braves 8, Twins 3: Minnesota Drops 8th in a Row

I don't *think* he's crying... - Kevin C. Cox

A recap of today's Braves-Twins matchup

In what is becoming a frustrating trend, pitcher Vance Worley lasted just 3 2/3 innings today, giving up a (career-high) 8 earned runs in that time. In addition to that trend, the Twins started the game by losing early. Among all major league teams, the Twins lead the league in runs given up in the first inning-a sad 70 runs in 43 first innings. That's...discouraging, to say the least. It doesn't help, obviously, when your starters consistently fail in the first few innings, and the Twins just haven't been able to scratch their way back into games over the past week or so, as they dropped their eighth game in a row today at Turner Field.

Worley didn't stick around with the big club long after the game today; he was optioned to AAA Rochester not long after the game. Hopefully he'll be able to pick himself up and get back a bit of that talent he showed while pitching in Philly before he was traded in the offseason.

The Twins defense helped Worley out a bit today, as Josh Willingham threw out Ramiro Pena at the plate in the bottom of the first inning while he tried to score on a Freddy Freeman hit. I'm counting 'solid bullpen pitching' as a point of defense today, because the Twins bullpen didn't allow any more hits, let alone any runs, after Worley left the game. Hooray! See, Twins fans? We can find bright spots anywhere if we look hard enough.

As far as the offense goes, the Twins were mostly pretty quiet today, with a sixth inning Justin Morneau bloop RBI. The Twins scored the other two runs in the ninth inning, off an Aaron Hicks homer and, a batter later, an Oswaldo Arcia homer. Yay for the rooks. Other than that, the Twins scattered just 9 hits throughout the whole game--and 3 of those were off the bat of Aaron Hicks. Baseball is funny sometimes.

Studs & Duds

Studs
-Aaron Hicks. Nice day at the plate.
-Josh Willingham. Not a great day at the plate, but I love outfield assists. Willinghammer gets credit.
-Twins bullpen. Continue to have to clean up for the starters, and did a great job today.

Duds
-Do I really have to list the first? Yeah. Vance Worley. Please stop sucking.
-Florimon in the 2-hole. Didn't work well.
-Chris Colabello. Welcome to the bigs! 0-for-4, 2 Ks.
-The Twins, for making us watch terrible baseball and dropping 8 in a row, but we won't stop watching because we're all masochists and really just kind of still love the game and oh god when does it end?!

Roll Call!
I'm just going to mention how impressed I was that such an early game got so many comments. Way to go, guys! Your top ten commenters...

# Commenter # Comments
1 MNWildcat 57
2 SooFoo Fan 42
3 myjah 31
4 Mulholland Reborn 27
5 d-mac 26
6 DavidRF 24
7 Devereaux 17
8 Gunnarthor 13
9 King VI 9
10 TwiMs 9

FanGraphs Graph of the Game
This one kind of sucks. Ouch.


Source: FanGraphs

Coming Up...
The Twins head into Detroit now, taking on the reigning division champs for a 4-game weekend series. I can't see this going horribly wrong, can you? Tomorrow's game will start at 6:08 pm CST at Comerica Park, with Scott Diamond facing Rick Porcello (forever young, my friends...). Make sure to check back with Twinkie Town over the next few days as roster moves and call ups are discussed!

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