Minnesota’s offense has gone in the tank after getting off to a shockingly strong start this season, but today the Twins get a pair of their best hitters off the disabled list in right fielder Oswaldo Arcia and left fielder Josh Willingham.
Arcia has been out since April 9 with a wrist injury and the Twins optioned him back to Triple-A once he was ready to come off the DL, but he crushed International League pitching and convinced them to actually add one of their best bats to the lineup (what a novel concept).
Willingham has been out since being hit on the hand by a pitch on April 7. His recovery went much more slowly than expected and based on his poor, injury wrecked performance last season there are a lot of question marks surrounding how much Willingham has left in the tank at age 35.
Mets starter Jon Niese left his start Tuesday night against the Cardinals due to left knee pain.
Niese walked two and gave up an RBI single before leaving with a trainer with one out in the bottom of the first inning. He was eventually charged with three earned runs. Robert Gsellman, just up from Las Vegas, took over, making his major league debut under unexpected circumstances.
Niese, who has not pitched well at all since coming over in a trade with the Pirates, is likely to be placed on the disabled list after the game or before tomorrow’s game.
Mark Trumbo still has many chances to hit a home run tonight — it’s only been an inning or so in the Nats-Orioles game — but his weird home run streak is over.
Coming into tonight’s game, Trumbo’s last seven hits had been homers. The all-time record had been 11, set by Mark McGwire back in 2001. The last time Trumbo got a hit that wasn’t a dong was back on August 11. Later in that game, however, he hit a grand slam. After that he went 6 for his next 34, with all those safeties dingers.
But that’s over now. In the first inning tonight he drove in a run with a two-out single. Then he was thrown out trying to stretch it to two. Good job on the RBIs, Mark. Bad job on the base running. Judgment withheld on the homer streak because, really, that’s just kind of weird and cool.