Minnesota Twins Fantasy Report: Pedro Hernandez Gets Shaky Win
Just when he was started to pitch better, Mike Pelfrey has hurt his back.
The Minnesota Twins managed to avoid a sweep in Cleveland with a 5-3 win Sunday as the team continues to hold its own lately.
Losing two of three to the Tribe hurts as Minny has now fallen three games back of the second place Indians, but the Twins have played well enough lately to have extended their lead over the last place Pale Hose.
Pedro Hernandez, farmed out just two days after we speculated he was in trouble last month, had to be recalled to make an emergency start for Mike Pelfrey, who hurt his back while running in the outfield during BP.
Well, despite a half dozen walks, Hernandez only gave up two runs in five innings to earn the win. Given his command (40 strikes, 45 balls), he was pretty damn lucky to get the W. We’ll cut him a little bit of slack given that he was pitching on short rest after tossing five innings of relief on Wednesday and having to drive all night to get to Cleveland in time.
However, even if his performance had more Fantasy appeal, don’t bother – Hernandez was optioned back to Triple-A after the game.
Meanwhile, Pelfrey has been placed on the 15-day DL with a strained back. Last month we discussed the possibility he’d lose his rotation spot, but he had actually been turning things around lately (including a gem against Philly as you can see in the video below), tossing back-to-back quality starts and just missing a third straight in his last outing. The DL assignment was backdated, so Pelfrey is eligible to return on July 4, but if for some reason you own him, now’s a great time to just let go.
Instead of Hernandez getting another shot, the Twins have turned to Kyle Gibson – finally. He’ll make his MLB debut Saturday and deserves immediate Fantasy attention because of his upside potential for the rest of the season. Claim away, peeps!
On offense, rookie Oswaldo Arcia continues to impress, driving in a pair for the second straight game and third time in the last four tries. He’s spanked two jacks in the last four games and has clearly shook off whatever cobwebs he had when he was first brought back to Minnesota a couple of weeks ago. Give him a look in AL-only leagues, and jump all over him in keeper formats.
John Willingham hasn’t come close to living up to our preseason billing as a top 30 outfielder, but he’s showing signs of life lately, hitting .273 with three RBI in the last week, including two hits and two ribbies Sunday. He’s had problems with his knees lately and he’s been getting dumped in lots of leagues as a result. You know how hot Willingham can get, so definitely keep your eyes on him if he’s been dropped and get ready to pounce.
After Hernandez’s shaky outing, the bullpen got it done, limiting Cleveland to just one run over the final four innings. That was yeoman’s work considering how much was asked of the relief corps Saturday when starter P.J. Walters had such serious control problems that he couldn’t even make it out of the first inning.
Closer Glen Perkins shut the door for his 19th save of the season despite surrendering a couple of hits in his one inning of work. That gives him 10 straight scoreless outings as he’s trimmed over a run from his ERA in less than a month. After a career best showing in 2012, his strikeout rate has really taken off this season (12.56 K/9) and he has yet to suffer a loss. Oh, and have you noticed Perkins’ WHIP (0.80)? Woah.
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