As far as interchanges go, it doesn't get much worse.
After allowing 11 runs in extra-innings on Friday night, the Twins decided to break everyone's heart in regulation on Saturday and allow 11 runs in the allotted nine innings. It allowed everyone to get an earlier start on their Saturday night.
Orlando Cabrera's Debut
It wasn't a bad night for O-Cab. He looks good in a Twins uniform, although this might have something to do with the fact that I now compare everyone to Tony Batista and how he looked. It's a low bar.
At the plate he collected a pair of hits, scoring on a Justin Morneau single in the third and then plating Nick Punto in the eighth. His double in the third was a shot going the other way, slicing down the right field line and into the corner. Denard Span went from first to third, with Cabrera flashing some decent speed behind him. In the field he was largely as advertised, making four put-outs in four attempts. According to his THT stats, he made one play out of the two in his zone (not great), but he also converted a pair of outs outside of his zone (which balances it out a bit). He looked good moving to his left, and on his first play in the top of the first made a play on a tough hop as he ranged toward second base before making the throw to first.
Anthony Swarzak's Night
Everything he threw just wasn't good enough. It's harsh, but I can't lie; nine hits in three-plus innings on just 64 pitches looks more like batting practice than it does anything else. He struck out one (lucky guy, Bobby Abreu, although at least two of those pitches looked like balls to me), and to his credit didn't walk anybody. Although, well...he didn't have to. Nobody wanted to take a walk with all those pitches coming through the zone. Swarzak gave up a double and a triple in addition to his seven singles. But he didn't give up any of the three home runs. So we're ending on a positive.
Joe Saunders' Night
He was pretty much what I expected, which was a good thing. It was just unfortunate that the Angels hit Swarzak harder than the Twins hit Saunders.
That's French for "the bullpen". R.A. Dickey (2.1 IP, 3 R, 1K, 3 BB, 1 HR) and Bobby Keppel (2.2 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 2 HR) couldn't keep it close. For the first half of the game the offense was keeping the Twins in it, and after five it was just 6-4. Dickey had just thrown a scoreless fourth (not counting the one Swarzak let in after two batters), although he did make it interesting; Dickey had also thrown a scoreless fifth. Then came that damn sixth inning.
Something named Sean Rodriguez singled, Chone Figgins walked, and then Maicer Izturis (yes, MAICER IZTURIS) decided that four home runs on the season wasn't enough, because five is his favorite number. With nobody out it was suddenly 9-4, and a game well within reach was suddenly a massive uphill battle.
Keppel's first two jobs were to get Juan Rivera and Kendry Morales. It went like this: strike-ball-ball-home run; ball-strike-strike-home run.
Joe was the only Twin who didn't get a hit on Saturday night. He also didn't walk. I guess even Joe can regress to the mean. Tears.
Jesse Crain pitched a scoreless ninth, making him the only Twins pitcher to not allow a run. Morneau collected a trio of hits, including his 27th home run which made it 11-5. Carlos Gomez picked up another triple, and Mike Redmond joined Cabrera in the doubles club. Span, Cabrera, Morneau, Redmond and Punto all collected multi-hit nights.
Stars of the Game
Honorable Mention: Carlos Gomez (1-for-4, 3B, RBI, SB, .074 WPA)
#3: Justin Morneau (3-for-5, HR, R, 2 RBI, .057 WPA)
#2: Orlando Cabrera (2-for-5, 2B, R, RBI, .071 WPA)
#1: Mike Redmond (2-for-3, R, RBI, BB, .160 WPA)
The Dark Side
#1: Anthony Swarzak (3+ IP, 9 H, 6 R, K, -.511 WPA)
#2: R.A. Dickey (2.1 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 3 BB, -.062 WPA)
#3: Joe Crede (1-for-5, -.083 WPA)