Scott Baker should (rightfully) be angry with his offense tonight. Lets look at the numbers for a moment:
# of starts that Baker has given a quality start: 10
record in those quality starts: 4-3 with 3 NDs
# of starts that Baker has given up only 1 run or less: 5 (Not including the May 3 appearance when he left with his groin injury after 3 innings)
# of wins in those starts: 1-2 with 2 NDs
First of all, those are insane numbers that Baker has put up. He has never gone less than 5 innings in a game (disregarding May 3), and has never given up more than 4 runs in a start, for a total of 33 runs this SEASON. In contrast, Livan has allowed a total of 83 runs., in only about 40 or so more innings. Know how many runs the offense has scored for Baker so far this year? An average of 4.84 (although, this should be adjusted because he was the winning picture in two games where the Twins scored 12 runs). In contrast, Livan received 6.11 runs of support.
Baker now has a record of 6-3. It should be more like 9-1 (give or take a few). Livan has a record of 10-6, which should be more like 6-10 (again, give or take). Baker has been amazing this season, the injury notwithstanding. I have to give him props for going out to pitch knowing how little run support he will have.
So, the Twins pulled off the series with the Rangers (although I do have to give Livan some props for his outing yesterday, and some boos at the offense. You see, they tuckered themselves out yesterday). I hate to be picky, but I don’t have any idea how they do it, given that their leadoff hitter is hitting .096 since, well, a long time ago. I hate to say it, but I want Harris to stay in there at short. He has looked good out there, and it seems the only way he can stay there is if Punto stays hurt, which puts me in a dicey position, since I will never wish a player harm or injury. So, I will say… I hope Punto is kept out of games for precautionary purposes.
So, on to Yankee Stadium. If you look at this post from a week ago, you will notice that I have little use for the “mystique” of Yankee Stadium. I also see no reason why the Twins can’t win two of three or sweep. I checked in at the Strib blogs earlier, and was unsurprised to notice that most of the posters are very pessimistic about the Twins’ chances this week. I don’t know why. The Yankees are not the team they were two or three years ago. They are old, injured, and many of their top players are slumping. If the Twins can step back and realize that the “mystique” of Yankee Stadium is a myth, this should be a very good series.