Twins to explore their options with Pelfrey

MINNEAPOLIS — It was more of the same on Thursday from Mike Pelfrey, and now the Twins will explore their options with the right-hander moving forward.

Pelfrey continued his early-season struggles to hand the Twins a 9-4 loss to the Dodgers in Game 1 of a split doubleheader at Target Field.

Pelfrey, who entered with a 7.32 ERA in four starts, turned in another poor outing, as he lasted a season-low four innings, giving up five runs on seven hits and three walks. He’s yet to go more than 5 1/3 innings in any of his outings this year, and is 0-3 with a 7.99 ERA.

“It’s frustrating,” Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. “He reverted back to the pace thing and didn’t throw it over enough. We were on the field a lot and he threw 85 pitches in four innings. So we just have to figure out what we need to do next and where we need to go next. We’ll sit down and talk with the pitching coach, the pitcher and everybody involved to see where we go with this.”

Gardenhire added that the Twins haven’t ruled out moving Pelfrey to the bullpen but will meet with Pelfrey and pitching coach Rick Anderson before making a decision.

Pelfrey was frustrated with himself after the game, and said he can’t put a finger on why his velocity is down this year and why he’s had so much trouble with his control. He’s walked 18 batters in 23 2/3 innings this season.

“It was the same thing that had been going for the last month — I was terrible,” Pelfrey said. “It was the same stuff of not locating your fastball, leaving pitches over the middle and walking guys. It’s been the same for five starts. It’s terrible. I’m sure the coaching staff and Gardy are frustrated but I’m more frustrated than anybody.”

He said he’d be OK with a move to the bullpen to try to straighten himself out but wasn’t sure of his status until meeting with Gardenhire and Anderson.

“I probably wouldn’t be happy but obviously I’m not helping the team every five days,” Pelfrey said. “So I’d accept it and do the best I can.”

Right-hander Samuel Deduno went four innings in relief, giving up three runs on seven hits and two walks with four strikeouts. He threw 62 pitches, and is a candidate to join the rotation.

“Sammy is fine,” Gardenhire said. “He just has to get into a routine, too. We stretched him out pretty good today and we’ll make a decision here.”

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