The Twins and Yankees picked right back up where they left off last night, as the bats were hot, again, in the rubber match tonight. The Yankees jumped on Odorizzi early and were playing from behind almost the whole game. The Yankees couldn’t figure out Devin Smeltzer, but the Twins’ offense couldn’t complete the comeback, as the Indians continue to gain ground on the Twins as their lead is only two games now.
Image courtesy of FanGraphs
Odorizzi: 4 IP, 10 H, 9 ER, 2 BB, 7 K, 61.7% strikes (63 of 102 pitches)
Bulllpen (Smeltzer): 5 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 4 K
Home Runs: Rosario (22), Cruz (22), Gonzalez (12)
Multi-Hit Games: Cruz (2-for-4, HR), Rosario (2-for-4, HR), Arraez (2-for-3, BB), Schoop (2-for-3)
Top 3 WPA: Cruz .100, Smeltzer .105, Rosario .172
Bottom 3 WPA: Garver -.081, Polanco -.136, Odorizzi -.576
Yankees Rake Odorizzi
The Twins could’ve really used a seven inning performance from their All-Star pitcher tonight in hopes of giving their bullpen a night off before their series against Chicago. The Yankees offense had a different idea as they pounced on Odorizzi for seven extra base hits and a season-high, nine runs in just four innings. In his last seven starts, Odorizzi has given up at least three runs in six of those.
Didi Gregorious and Aaron Hicks continued to destroy the Twins’ this series and they both made their presence felt early. After Gregorious demolished the Twins for five hits and seven RBIs last night, he ripped an RBI double and 2-RBI triple in the first half of the game. Hicks, who put the Yankees ahead in the ninth, and ended the game in the 10th, picked up two more RBIs in the first half off a home run and single.
Though Odorizzi was able to strike out seven through four innings, his control was the biggest issue tonight. He wasn’t hitting his spots on any of his pitches, as he was only able to get a first pitch strike on 50% of the 24 batters he faced.
There have really only been three good pitchers for the Minnesota Twins this series, and coincidentally, they were all on the AAA roster before the series started. Lewis Thorpe gave the Twins a solid 2.2 innings on Monday, Cody Stashak gave them two shutout innings last night, and tonight Devin Smeltzer gave the Twins’ bullpen a much needed rest throwing five innings. He finished the game with five very solid innings and was the only pitcher out of the bullpen.
After Odorizzi was only able to go four innings, Smeltzer came in and gave four shutout innings before surrendering a home run in the ninth. He gave up only three hits in those first four innings, and even struck out the side in the seventh.
Smeltzer was called up today because the Twins were in dire need of some arms. He out-performed what was expected of him tonight, and really gave the Twins a good chance at coming back. He had command with all of his pitches and was able to pick up a first pitch strike on 16 out of the 19 batters he faced!
Twins Offense Comes Up Short
This whole series, both teams have needed their offense to match what the opponents did before them. Tonight was no different as the Bomba Squad tried to match the Bronx Bombers. It was an action-filled first half of the game, but the bullpens came in and shut down these hot offenses.
The Twins got the action going when Rosario hit a 2-run homer in the bottom of the first, but saw their only lead vanish quickly. After Odorizzi gave up nine runs, that was matched by only one from the Twins, Marwin Gonzalez finally got them back on track with another 2-run homer. A Garver sac-fly and a solo shot later, the Twins saw their deficit down to only two.
After the Twins scored their last run on a Nelson Cruz home run, the Yankee bullpen got the next 15 outs while facing only 18 batters. They had some threats throughout those 15 outs, but hit into two double plays, and stranded two guys on in the seventh.
Postgame With Baldelli
Bullpen Usage Spreadsheet
Click herefor a review of the number of pitches thrown by each member of the bullpen over the past five days.