Twins Bullpen Breaks Down Worse Than Margot Kidder

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Too bad the Metrodome doesn't have a retractable roof. The bullpen stinks. Lulz.

The dapper and knowledgeable La Velle E. Neal III of the Minneapolis Star Tribune has traced a direct line between the Twins' late season collapse and the utter permeability of the relief corps.

The bullpen crisis is unprecedented in (Pitching Coach Rick) Anderson's tenure. Twins relievers have ranked no worse than fifth in the AL in ERA since he took over the pitchers when Ron Gardenhire was hired as manager in 2002. The Twins led the league with a 2.91 bullpen ERA in 2006 and were fifth last year at 3.80.

As of Monday, the Twins bullpen ERA of 4.07 ranked ninth in the league -- including a 4.76 ERA since Aug. 1. While the relievers' home ERA is a sparkling 2.48, it is 5.74 on the road. Part of the problem stems from a season-ending elbow injury suffered by top setup man Pat Neshek in early May.

The Twins suffered four walk-off losses during their recently completed 14-game road trip. And they have lost five games this season during which they have led by three or more runs in the seventh inning or later. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the Twins lost a total of five games in that manner from 2003 to 2007.

Joe Nathan blew three saves during the recent road trip -- and he is one of the best closers in the game. Nathan had blown only three of his first 38 save opportunities this year.

That home/road ERA split doesn't tell a fully accurate story. As you can see in this month by month breakdown of the bullpen ERA, it actually dipped in August when they were on their GOP road trip. It's popped back up again at home in September. Don't worry thought Minnesota fans. You're not out of it yet because your pitching coach has it allllll figured out.

"To me, the reason for the inconsistency is that they are all trying too hard," Anderson said.
See? Situation under control.

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Thank god they have that figured out. I was a little worried about it. Now they just have to learn how to half ass it and they will be just fine.

Grover was and is my favorite resident of Sesame Street.

Is that why I am so bad at my job? Trying to hard? My manager seems to disagree.


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