Dodgers 7, Twins 0: Absolutely Imperfect Day

Twins never stood a chance against future Hall of Famer

Chris Paddack did a good job limiting the damage despite fighting control issues during his 4.0 inning outing. He was helped by a nice (if risky) play in left field by Nick Gordon, and hurt by a truly puzzling error by Gio Urshela.

All in all, Paddack’s debut wasn’t terrible. He gave up 3 runs in 4 innings, with 3 strikeouts, 0 walks and a HBP. He was up against less than ideal circumstances between just being traded, facing a deadly Dodgers lineup, and dealing with cold weather, and he did alright. I’m still hopeful for better things to come for him.

The Twins would’ve lost no matter what their pitchers did today. The lineup looked truly hopeless against future Hall of Famer Clayton Kershaw today, who sliced and diced them on his way to 13 strikeouts in 7.0 PERFECT innings today, before being yanked by the manager Dave Roberts with six outs to go and only 80 pitches. Between spring training being shortened and Kershaw having considerable miles on his arm, there is some defense to be made for this decision, but I personally was furious.

If there’s one pitcher I would root for to hurl a perfecto against my home team, it’s Kershaw. He’s the greatest pitcher of his generation and has accomplished everything he possibly could- besides a perfect game. To be so close, looking so dominant, and only have 80 pitches… I won’t listen to any defense of the decision to yank him and deprive him of trying (the way he was dominating, succeeding) for the 24th perfect game in MLB history.

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Anyway, the rest of the game happened. Son of Pudge, Dereck Rodriguez, dodged, dipped, ducked, dived, and dodged his way through 3.0 scoreless innings before completely unraveling in the 8th, giving up home runs to back-to-back-to-back hitters on only four total pitches. Alex Vesia entered for the Dodgers and gave up the Twins’ only two baserunners, a single by Gary Sanchez and a walk of Max Kepler. The Dodgers hit another solo bomb in the top of the 9th, this one coming against Griffin Jax- who would have cooler nickname opportunities as an Air Force grad if he hit bombs instead of giving them up. In the bottom of the 9th, the Twins went down without a whimper and mercifully brought an end to this two-game series.

STUDS:

Clayton Kershaw

DUDS:

All Twins

Dave Roberts

COTG (A Story in Three Parts):

Brandon Brooks takes the cake, with context provided

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