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Twins find another way to lose, blow 5-0 lead in eighth

May 27, 2011, 11:35 PM EDT

Ron Gardenhire AP

It looked like the Twins finally had one in the bag when Scott Baker turned a 5-0 lead against the Angels over the bullpen after seven excellent innings.  It should have been the elusive third victory for Baker, who had seen the Twins score more than three runs in just three of his nine starts.

Alas, the eighth proved terribly unkind to the club once again.

Alex Burnett, Dusty Hughes and Jim Hoey combined to give up five runs in the frame, and Hoey went on to take the loss in the ninth as the Angels stormed back to win 6-5.  The Twins, already with baseball’s worst record, fell to 16-33.

Incredibly, the Twins have given up 49 runs in the eighth inning of their 49 games.  We’re no experts, but that’s almost like a run per game or something.

It seems likely that more changes are in store for the Twins bullpen after this one.  The three pitchers who combined to blow the lead — Burnett, Hughes and Hoey — have ERAs of 7.11, 9.95 and 10.61, respectively.  It’d be no surprise at all to Burnett and Hughes go down Saturday, with Chuck James and perhaps former first-round pick Carlos Gutierrez coming up to replace them.  Anthony Slama is another in line for a chance.

The Twins have more problems than the pen, and the shuffling of the chairs there probably won’t do a lot of good.  But they have to do something and since a long-term benching of Delmon Young probably isn’t in the cards, they’re low on alternatives.

  1. royalsfaninfargo - May 27, 2011 at 11:39 PM

    I actually listened to this game on the radio and i must admit, Jack Morris is one of the worst color commentators in the game. He is just brutal!

  2. Justin - May 27, 2011 at 11:41 PM

    Find another way? Pretty sure they have been doing it the same way all year, with a crappy bullpen.

  3. cur68 - May 27, 2011 at 11:56 PM

    -deep sigh-
    I had hopes. I really had hopes for them…

    oh fleeting hope I hardly knew ye,
    You were but a glimmer and then
    you were gone, gone away…

    Seriously how can they suck this bad? Is the bullpen being paid to lose or something? Is there no one willing to be the team’s RBI whore? Bullpen stud? Pitching Pimp?

    How did a team this good get to be this bad so fast?

    A lot of questions. No solutions…

  4. cup0pizza - May 28, 2011 at 12:11 AM

    Well, I guess one team sucks harder than the Dodgers.

  5. purdueman - May 28, 2011 at 1:13 AM

    The article’s author could have saved a whole lot of words, time and effort is he had simply stopped after writing: “Twins Blow!”.

    While I totally respect the Twins organization, they made one very fatal mis-calculation in their 5 year plan, and that’s not taking into account how their reportedly marvelous new ballpark would play with the current makeup of their roster.

  6. std6514 - May 28, 2011 at 1:27 AM

    And you look at that, all of them are gardys boys. All of them were his favorite relievers outside of capps. I tell you what, the more players Gardy critcizes in the media, the more pissed the team will be at him and stop trying even more.

  7. dprat - May 28, 2011 at 5:06 AM

    Wow, this looks like really awful game management. Burnett and Hughes both came in with a 5 run lead (Hughes with two inherited baserunners), so we’ll give Gardenhire a pass for both of them. But after the 3 run homer, and another hit, tieing run coming to the plate, he gives the ball to Hoey? Really? And doesn’t take him out even after he let’s the 4th and 5th runs in, but let’s him finish the inning… and start the next one! And promptly gives up two more hits and a run, the game winner. And only then Gardy brings in someone who actually might, you know, maybe get someone out. I don’t often watch the Twins, so maybe I’m missing some bullpen backstory here, but this just reeked of letting righty-lefty matchups prevent you from actually using your best pitchers. So, two huge mistakes… giving the ball to Hoey in the 8th, and then sending him back out to start the 9th.

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