Brad Radke has had his fair share of struggles this year, but it's comforting to know that he can still mow down hitters against baseball's worst lineup. I don't want to go too far with glowing compliments about Radke's performance last night since it was against such a bad team, but it it is still worth saying that this is worlds better than we have seen Brad pitch all year. At the very least, it confirms that he has something left in the tank, which I was honestly starting to doubt after watching his five previous performances.
I'm sure Ron Gardenhire will be talking about how Radke is finally "locating his changeup" and "hitting his spots." Whatever he was doing, it was working. Radke was phenomenal, holding the Royals to 1 run on 4 hits over 7 innings of work, including a stretch of 11 straight batters set down. Radke never allowed more than one baserunner in an inning, and the only run he surrendered came on a home run by Matt Stairs in the 7th, with the Twins already well out front. Radke struck out 7 and walked none.
Meanwhile, it was a typical game for the Twins offense, as they did all their damage within a couple innings and were pretty inactive outside of that. In the 3rd and 4th innings, the Twins scored 6 runs on 8 hits. Outside of those two innings, they had a total of one hit. Some day it would be nice to just see them come out and hit the ball hard consistently all game long, without these long stretches of 1-2-3 innings. Is that so much to ask? Their opponents don't seem to have a lot of trouble doing it.
The fine outing by Radke leaves only one pitcher in the starting rotation without a quality start. It's Carlos Silva, and he'll be starting tonight against Jeremy Affeldt. Silva has been quite possibly the worst starting pitcher in all of baseball thus far (except for maybe Joe Mays, who the Twins crushed last night), and if he can't put together a decent outing against the Royals, I am ready to just give up on him.