Twins CEO Jim Pohlad finds team’s play “embarrassing”

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The Twins enter tonight’s game against the Rays 63-82, meekly doggy-paddling to the end of the regular season. They have lost six of their last eight games, including a humiliating 18-3 loss to the first-place Athletics. CEO Jim Pohlad told the media that, given the way the team has played, “it’s embarrassing to walk through the concourse”.

Pohlad promised to help GM Terry Ryan “however he wants me to help”, citing free agents as an example. However, he doesn’t intend to get involved with long-term contracts.

Via Charley Walters of the Pioneer Press:

“We would spend any amount of money in the current year, but in order to be able to spend that amount of money, you often have to obligate yourself so far out also.

“But there will be situations that will work. We’re not going to spend just for the heck of it, but, personally, I believe that could be a way to put some juice in there.”

There is an urgency, Pohlad said, to making the Twins a contender.

“We don’t want to wait,” he said. “I’m not saying we’re not going to do two- or three- or four-year contracts, but that seven-, eight-year stuff is a killer.”

It doesn’t seem like the Twins are a handful of free agents away from contention, but with their in-progress youth movement and with Byron Buxton and Miguel Sano progressing, dealing with veteran free agents on one- or two-year deals may not be such a bad idea. It certainly makes more sense than borrowing from the promising future to supplement an uncertain present.

Justin Verlander earns 200th career win

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Astros starter Justin Verlander wasn’t his usual dominant self on Sunday against the Athletics, but he was good enough to get the win. In doing so, he earned the 200th win of his career, becoming the 117th member of the 200-win club.

Verlander went 5 1/3 innings, yielding four runs (all earned) on seven hits and a walk with six strikeouts. On the season, Verlander is now 12-8 with a 2.65 ERA and a 223/29 K/BB ratio in 169 2/3 innings. Sunday’s win helped the Astros stave off the surging A’s. The Astros now have a one-game lead in the AL West.

Only two active pitchers have more wins than Verlander: Bartolo Colon (247) and CC Sabathia (244). Zack Greinke will likely be the next member of the 200-win club as he currently has 184 to his name.