Back in 2006, Chicago White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said the Minnesota Twins were “piranhas.”
He meant it as a compliment, as in “man those Twins are feisty. They’re small and don’t look so threatening, but they will swarm and take you down!” Or something like that.
Now, in the year 2011, Ozzie is still dishing out compliments to the plucky Twins. That’s not surprising given that Minnesota has won 11 of its last 13 games, as well as six straight series against the White Sox.
But over time, his compliments seem to be getting a lot less, well, complimentary. What once were piranhas are now sardines:
“They are [bleeping] sardines. They ARE sardines. They look like a bunch of circus midgets out there. But they can play.”
Guillen went on to laud the work of Twins manager Ron Gardenhire for getting the most out of a team suffering numerous injuries. “When you’re missing Morneau, Mauer, Thome and Kubel, and you’re still winning games, you gotta give those guys credit.”
So there you have it. Ozzie still likes the Twins, but the piranhas have been downgraded to sardines.
And circus midgets.
Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen gave up three runs in the top of the ninth inning during Sunday’s game against the Braves, blowing his first save since August 26 last season. He had converted 34 consecutive saves.
Jansen yielded back-to-back singles to lead off the ninth inning, staked to a 4-1 lead. After getting two outs, Matt Adams hit a three-run home run down the right field line to knot the game at four apiece.
After Sunday’s lackluster performance, Jansen is now 24-for-25 in save chances this season with a 1.49 ERA and a 62/2 K/BB ratio in 42 1/3 innings.
Orioles closer Zach Britton finished Sunday’s 9-7 victory over the Astros with a scoreless ninth inning, earning his sixth save of the season. He has now earned the save in 55 consecutive opportunities dating back to September 2015, setting a new American League record. Tom Gordon previously held the record with 54 consecutive saves. Eric Gagne holds the major league record at 84.
Britton’s last blown save came on September 20, 2015, then converted two more saves before the end of the regular season. He went 47-for-47 in save chances last season and is six-for-six so far this year.
Along with his six saves, Britton has a 2.65 ERA and a 13/8 K/BB ratio in 17 innings this season. The lefty came off the disabled list earlier this month after missing two months with a strained left forearm.