Well, the Twins have certainly had a lot going on over the past thirty-six hours. They've seemingly snapped out of a funk with two big wins against the Angels. Friday's game was very exciting, as the Twins rallied from a five-run deficit by scoring seven runs in the eighth. Of course, it was capped off by Jason Kubel's grand slam which also gave him the cycle. Kubel's slam was huge, as it came on the heels of yet another bullpen collapse. In losing five of their previous six games, the Minnesota bullpen had allowed 21 runs in 20 innings. That number was up to 26 runs in 21 2/3 innings, including 18 in their last 9 2/3, by the time Kubel stepped to the plate in the eighth inning on Friday. Fortunately, Kubel delivered the biggest pick-me-up possible. In the next half-inning, Joe Nathan kept it rolling with a perfect frame to get his second save.
And last night the Twins, Kubel especially, went right back at it. Kevin Slowey had a good outing for the first time this year, the bullpen had a scoreless outing, and the offense scored nine runs. Kubel drove in two of those and scored three of them, in addition to having his second-straight four-hit game. How's 8-10 with 5 runs, 7 RBIs, and 4 extra base hits sound for a two-game stretch? Delmon Young also had a nice game, picking up 3 RBIs, including a 2-out bases-loaded single. Oh, and he and Carlos Gomez walked in the same inning (the 5th) in this game. Mark your calendars, because that won't happen again for a long time!
With the bullpen struggling so much, the organization obviously felt they needed to make a change, which they did on Friday when they designated Phillip Humber for assignment. This was in order to make room for another reliever, Juan Morillo, who the Twins claimed from the Rockies after he was DFA'd. Now we'll have to see if Humber, who was sporting a 12.46 ERA, makes it through waivers and to AAA-Rochester. If not, one of the four pieces in the Johan Santana deal will have already been lost without compensation.
Speaking of which, Santana continued his torrid start to 2009 with another amazing performance. This time: 7 IP, 5 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 7 K. And yet again, he needed every ounce to get the win, as the Mets' offense provided him a sole run of support. His ERA now stands at 0.46, which explains how he has 2 wins despite the total of 4 runs the Mets have scored in his three starts.
On the opposite end of the spectrum is Chien-Ming Wang, who started for the Yankees yesterday in their 22-4 loss! He's now given up at least 7 earned runs in each of his starts, hasn't made it past the fourth inning in any of them, and has an ERA of 34.50. Who knew that when he gave up 7 runs in 3 2/3 innings in his first start, it would still easily be his best start of the year at this point? Back to the demolition the Yankees experienced Saturday, though. There's a lot of things to be said, but this post is getting long and I'm sure it will be talked about plenty. Just look across the box scores for Saturday, though, and check how many teams had 13 hits. The answer: two. That's how many extra base hits the Indians had.