Twins right-hander Kevin Slowey had a no-hitter going through seven innings against the A’s on Sunday, but was lifted due to a pitch count of 106 and a recent bout with elbow tendinitis.
Slowey walked three batters through his seven innings of work and needed several deep counts to keep the A’s hitless. That cost him a shot at history, but he was excellent nonetheless in the heat of a tight race atop the American League Central.
Jon Rauch entered in relief in the eighth and promptly allowed a Cliff Pennington double, snapping the chance of a combined no-hitter.
Slowey, 26, has been very up-and-down this season, dominating in some starts and awful in others. But he’s in line for his 11th win today and currently boasts a 4.22 ERA and 1.23 WHIP over 24 outings. In other words, the kid has been great.
If the Twins’ bullpen wraps it up, Minnesota will grab a 2.5-game lead over the White Sox in the AL Central.
Mariners right-hander Erasmo Ramirez has been shut down for two weeks with a minor lat strain, reports Ryan Divish of the Seattle Times. It’s a precautionary move, as Ramirez felt some tightness in his arm and could not complete his scheduled bullpen session on Saturday.
There’s no word yet on whether Ramirez will be able to recover in time for the start of the season, though he’s expected to claim a rotation spot again this spring. The 28-year-old righty has been dogged by injuries throughout his six-year career, but finally managed to piece together a full season on the mound in back-to-back stints with the Rays and Mariners in 2017. He went 5-6 in 19 starts for the two clubs and turned in a cumulative 4.39 ERA, 2.1 BB/9 and 7.5 SO/9 through 131 1/3 innings.
The Mariners are no stranger to pitcher injuries, either. They lost a number of their top arms to various elbow, arm and shoulder injuries last year and cycled through 40 total pitchers as they limped toward a 78-84 finish. Comments from club manager Scott Servais indicate that the team will keep a close eye on Ramirez throughout his recovery, though Divish notes that right-hander Andrew Moore and lefty Ariel Miranda could also slot into the no. 5 spot if Ramirez experiences further setbacks.