Posted by: gravessack | April 28, 2017

Santana Keeping Twins Respectable

After having a decent start to the season, the Twins have fallen back around .500. One of the reasons for this is that the offense has been sub-par, and the starting pitching has been less than desirable. Starter Kyle Gibson has been having control trouble, and Adalberto Mejia was sent to Triple-A Rochester April 22 after just three starts. However, there is some great news from the rotation: Ervin Santana is pitching extraordinary well and is keeping the Twins alive.

Santana, who pitched the Twins to an Opening Day victory April 3, has had a brilliant start to his season. Minnesota Twins starting pitcher Ervin Santana smiling with baseball cap off and sunglasses on in dugoutIn fact, it is the best start by a Twins pitcher in their 56-year existence. With Santana’s wonderful fastball-curveball combination, opponents look baffled against him. The 34-year-old has pitched with confidence, knowing his mechanics can produce outs if done effectively. Santana has pitched in five games so far, putting up these ludicrous numbers: a 4-0 record, an ERA of 0.77 and 36 strikeouts, while allowing just 3 runs on 13 hits. He is so much on his game right now that he has already recorded a complete game one-hit shutout against the White Sox on April 15.

The Twins have seldom seen pitching performances like this. Yes, former Twin Ricky Nolasco started the 2015 season with a 5-1 record before missing four months due to injury. Nonetheless, Santana has done something that the Twins have not witnessed since Johan Santana was on the mound for the Twins. According to the team, the two are the only ones in Twins history who have not given up 2 runs in five consecutive starts. Ervin Santana has a chance to surpass Johan in his next start.

Santana has five pitch types in his back pocket: fastball, two-seam fastball, change up, cutter, and slider. If he can keep command of his pitches, the Twins could have an ace on their hands, a luxury they have not had since the mid-2000s. Santana has been a big boost to this pitching staff since the last month of the 2016 season. Contrary to some, I feel that the Dominican is already the ace of the Twins, will guide his team to a way better record then last year, and will definitely make this year’s All-Star Game! To read more on Santana’s awesome start to 2017, click here.

Written by: Michael L. Sack

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