I am in no mood to write a long negative post about the team, but it's pretty tough to draw any positives from yesterday's 6-3 loss. Carlos Silva was pulled due to a groin injury after pitching two unimpressive innings. Kevin Slowey, who earlier in the day had been tabbed to replace Boof Bonser in the starting rotation for the remainder of the season, came in to relieve Silva but didn't have much success, pitching 3 1/3 innings and allowing three runs on a pair of homers. With his fly ball tendencies, it was a good bet that Slowey would be somewhat homer-prone in the big leagues, but he has now allowed 16 dingers in 48 major-league innings, which is a tad ridiculous. That's one every three innings.
The good news to come out of the game, from a pitching standpoint, is that Glen Perkins made his long-awaited return to the Twins, pitching a scoreless eighth while notching two strikeouts.
Silva's injury leaves his status uncertain, which adds some intrigue to the Bonser situation. As I mentioned above, the Twins announced yesterday that Bonser would be relegated to the bullpen for the rest of the year, with Slowey taking his spot in the rotation. With the exception of the month of May, the entire season has essentially been a struggle for Bonser, which is disappointing given the success he had down the stretch last year. I haven't given up on Bonser by any means, and it doesn't sound like the Twins have either, but I can't say I'm too distraught about their decision to move the burly right-hander to the bullpen for the time being. For one thing, the move gives Slowey a few starts to work on things before the season is over -- he's clearly too good for Triple-A but still out of his element in the majors. An additional benefit will be that the Twins can see what Bonser looks like out of the bullpen. Boof has three good pitches, but he has displayed stamina problems all year, so the idea of him succeeding as a reliever might actually have some merit. That could ultimately be useful when you consider the bullpen questions that the Twins will carry into next season.
Of course, there's a chance Bonser might not actually move to the bullpen at all in light of yesterday's events, as he may just take over Silva's spot in the rotation should the ailing Silva have to miss time. Another possibility is that Nick Blackburn could step in and make a start or two in place of Silva. Blackburn has looked pretty good in limited duty out of the 'pen; I'd be interested to see what he could do over five or six innings.
One thing I'm not interested in seeing anymore is Nick Punto starting over Brian Buscher. Also, what does it say about your team's depth when you use Rondell White, Matt LeCroy and Garrett Jones as pinch-hitters in the same game?
The Twins have the day off today, and tomorrow the Tigers visit for a weekend series.
On a final note, I'll mention this hilarious little comment that the always-insightful Star Tribune columnist Jim Souhan sneaked into an article about the offseasons of NHL players yesterday:
He's [Wild center Wes Walz] an exceptional skater and fitness freak who has survived since his NHL debut in 1989 even though he scores about as often as a sports blogger.See, Souhan is much more desirable to women because he goes into a building downtown and writes sports-related rants, unlike us sex-deprived bloggers who write such rants from home.
You stay classy, Jimmy.