|2010 - Nick Blackburn||2-1||5||5||1||0||0||0||32.2||44||22||21||7||9||9||5.79||1.62|
After a complete game his last time out, here's hoping Blackburn can build on that success after four disappointing starts to kick off the season. While most of the bullpen will be available this afternoon, it's important for him to put together back-to-back quality starts just as much for his own confidence as for the success of the club.
What helped Nick in his last outing was how he pitched. In spite of never getting a lot of swinging strikes he was able to pepper the strike zone with each of his offerings, and more importantly he was placing the balls right where he wanted them. As a result he picked up 18 ground ball outs, with just five coming through the air. That's exactly the kind of performance Blackburn needs again today.
|2010 - Brian Matusz||2-2||6||6||0||0||0||0||36.2||37||18||16||2||13||31||3.93||1.36|
This will be the second time the Twins have faced Matusz in his young career, with the first being a five-inning effort where he allowed three runs.
As far as this season is concerned, Matusz is looking to record his fifth quality start in a row. He's kept the Yankees to just four earned runs in 12 innings in his last two starts, which is quite telling. Anytime you can keep an All-Star lineup under your thumb twice in a row, that's impressive.
So far this year his money pitches have been his fastball, which runs 90-91, and his changeup which comes in around the lower to mid-80's. He complements these with occasional breaking balls, neither of which are bad pitches in their own right. If the Twins want to get to Matusz, they'll need to be paitent. There's a tendency for fly balls there, and he hasn't pitched too often in high-leverage situations yet this season. If Minnesota can put some pressure on him, it will be interesting to see if his cage gets a little rattled.
05/09/10 2:10 PM EDT
|Baltimore Orioles||Minnesota Twins|
|Cesar Izturis - SS||Denard Span - CF|
|Ty Wigginton - 2B||Nick Punto - 3B|
|Nick Markakis - RF||Joe Mauer - DH|
|Miguel Tejada - 3B||Justin Morneau - 1B|
|Matt Wieters - C||Michael Cuddyer - RF|
|Luke Scott - DH||Delmon Young - LF|
|Adam Jones - CF||Wilson Ramos - C|
|Garrett Atkins - 1B||Brendan Harris - SS|
|Nolan Reimold - LF||Alexi Casilla - 2B|