Results tagged ‘ Matt Maloney ’

Twins lineup vs. Pirates

BRADENTON, Fla. — Left-hander Matt Maloney gets his first start of the spring today, as he’s one of a few pitchers getting stretched out in case Scott Baker and Jason Marquis aren’t ready to start the season.

Maloney has been terrific this spring, as he’s yet to allow a run in 11 1/3 innings. He’s also struck out 13 and walked just two.

The Twins are also going to get a look at outfield prospect Angel Morales, who is in the starting lineup and batting sixth. Morales was hindered by an elbow injury last season, and played 33 games with Class A Advanced Fort Myers, hitting .264/.326/.388 with three homers and six doubles.

Twins (15-12)
1. Ben Revere, CF
2. Alexi Casilla, 2B
3. Danny Valencia, DH
4. Chris Parmelee, 1B
5. Luke Hughes, 3B
6. Angel Morales, RF
7. Brian Dinkelman, LF
8. Brian Dozier, SS
9. Drew Butera, C

LHP Matt Maloney

Twins pitchers: Jared Burton, Jeff Gray, Alex Burnett, Casey Fien

Pirates (8-16)
1. Alex Presley, LF
2. Josh Harrison, SS
3. Jose Tabata, RF
4. Casey McGehee, 1B
5. Neil Walker, 2B
6. Nate McLouth, CF
7. Pedro Alvarez, 3B
8. Michael McKenry, C
9. James McDonald, RHP

Game 12: Liriano, Burnett struggle in loss

FORT MYERS, Fla. — Left-hander Francisco Liriano allowed four runs over three innings, and the Twins managed just five hits in an 8-2 loss to the split-squad Blue Jays at Hammond Stadium.

The loss dropped the Twins to 6-6 in Grapefruit League play. They travel to Clearwater on Wednesday to face the Phillies and ace Roy Halladay.

What went right: Relievers Kyle Waldrop, Jared Burton and Matt Maloney kept their ERAs at 0.00, as they combined to retire all 10 batters they faced.

Waldrop threw a perfect fourth inning with a strikeout before Burton tossed a 1-2-3 fifth inning with two strikeouts. Maloney struck out Anthony Gose to end the sixth before retiring the side in order in the seventh with two more strikeouts.

The three pitchers have combined to throw 12 1/3 scoreless innings with 15 strikeouts and two walks allowed so far in Grapefruit League action.

It’s still early, but all three have made a strong case to join the bullpen out of camp with their impressive results.

Burton — the only non-roster invite of the three — remains the most likely to make the club given his success as a setup reliever with the Reds before injuries plagued him the last few seasons.

Maloney, who has experience as a starter, is a candidate to be a long reliever. He’s also a left-hander, and even though fellow left-handers Glen Perkins and Brian Duensing are locks to make the roster, Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said he has no problems having three lefties in the bullpen.

Gardenhire also gave Waldrop his full vote of confidence, saying that he believes that the sinkerballer is Major League ready.

The offense didn’t do much on the afternoon, but Joe Mauer went 2-for-3 with a run scored after being hitless over his previous four games. Luke Hughes also played all nine innings at second base and went 1-for-3. Trevor Plouffe and Steve Pearce picked up RBI singles in the sixth.

What went wrong: Liriano cruised through the first two innings but ran into trouble in the third inning.

He loaded the bases with nobody out, and ended up allowing back-to-back doubles to Travis Snider and Travis d’Arnaud with one out. The one positive was that he didn’t walk a batter and struck out five, but he also plunked Mike McCoy in the third and struggled with his command that inning.

Reliever Alex Burnett continued his struggles, allowing four runs on five hits and a balk while recording just two outs in the sixth inning.

Burnett, who is competing for a spot in the bullpen, hasn’t helped himself much this spring with a 16.80 ERA in 2 2/3 innings. He also struggled in a “B” game against the Pirates on Sunday.

What they said: “It was one of those games where there wasn’t a lot of movement on our side,” Gardenhire said. “We got behind early and played a little bit too much defense with not enough offense.”

What’s next: Right-hander Jason Marquis is set to make his third Grapefruit League start on Wednesday against the Phillies at 12:05 p.m. CT at Bright House Field. Marquis has allowed five runs on six hits over 4 2/3 innings so far this spring. Brian Duensing, Jeff Manship, Esmerling Vasquez, Luis Perdomo, Jeff Gray and Aaron Thompson are also scheduled to pitch for the Twins. Phillies ace Roy Halladay starts for Philadelphia.

Injury update: Center fielder Denard Span missed his second straight game with neck stiffness. But he took batting practice without any issues and is expected to make the trip to Clearwater on Wednesday. … Infielder Tsuyoshi Nishioka was held out of the lineup for the second straight day with sprained left pinkie. Nishioka, though, is expected to start at shortstop against the Phillies. … Infielder Steve Pearce left Tuesday’s game with a strained right calf and is day to day.

Game 9: Valencia powers Twins to victory

BRADENTON, Fla. — Danny Valencia helped the Twins get out of their offensive slump with a three-run homer to lead the Twins to a 4-2 win over the Pirates on Saturday at McKechnie Field.

The victory snapped a three-game losing streak for the Twins, who improved to 4-5 in Grapefruit League play.

What went right: Valencia looked good at the plate, hitting an opposite-field double in the fifth inning off Jo-Jo Reyes before crushing a three-run shot off Reyes in the sixth.

The homer was set up by a two-out walk from Josh Willingham and a single from Justin Morneau. Morneau, who served as designated hitter, went 1-for-4 at the plate, including a deep fly ball to center field in the first. Willingham went 1-for-2 with a walk.

Right-hander Anthony Swarzak tossed 1 1/3 scoreless innings in relief of right-hander Terry Doyle, who struggled. Jared Burton, Matt Maloney, Kyle Waldrop, Lester Oliveros and P.J. Walters each tossed a scoreless inning.

“They’re doing fine,” Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said of the relievers in camp. “We’re just looking at different guys. We see some guys we like a little bit. We like their arms. We see the ball coming out, but still, they’ve only been out once or twice. I think, let’s give them a couple more times out and see where we’re at.”

What went wrong: Doyle didn’t have his best stuff, as he allowed two runs on seven hits — including three doubles — and a walk over 2 2/3 innings.

Doyle, a Rule 5 Draft pick who must remain on the active roster all season or be offered back to the White Sox, didn’t exactly help his case to make the club. It was also Twins manager Ron Gardenhire’s first time seeing him pitch.

And while Valencia certainly had a good day offensively, the rest of the Twins combined for just four hits — singles from Willingham, Morneau, Rene Rivera and Alexi Casilla.

Also, despite 14 hits, including a homer from Oswaldo Arcia and two doubles from Chris Parmelee, the Twins also lost 8-2 in a “B” game to the Pirates earlier in the day. Scott Baker pitched in two innings, but recorded just four outs, surrendering six runs (five earned) on six hits, including a two-run homer by Matt Hague.

“Baker was not very good at all,” Gardenhire said. “He got beat around pretty good. He threw the ball. We’ll see how he does from there. Maybe that “B” game format, he might need a little more preparation than that riding the bus and all that trying to pitch. He didn’t react well to that.”

What they said: “We had two good ballgames today,” Gardenhire said. “We had 13 or 14 hits in the first one, then out here today we came up with some big hits too. A better day.”

What’s next: Right-hander Nick Blackburn is set to make his Grapefruit League debut on Sunday against the split-squad Yankees at 12:05 p.m. CT at Hammond Stadium. Blackburn has tossed three scoreless innings in two “B” games against the Red Sox this spring. Brian Duensing, Liam Hendriks, Jeff Manship, Tyler Robertson, Brendan Wise and Deolis Guerra are also scheduled to pitch for the Twins. Right-hander Phil Hughes is slated to start for the Yankees.

Twins claim LHP Maloney, RHP Gray off waivers

MINNEAPOLIS — The Twins claimed left-hander Matt Maloney off waivers from the Reds and right-hander Jeff Gray off waivers from the Mariners, the club announced Monday.

Maloney, 27, made eight appearances (two starts) for the Reds, going 0-3 with a 9.16 ERA and four walks and 13 strikeouts in 18 2/3 innings. He also made 14 appearances (13 starts) for Triple-A Louisville, going 7-1 with a 2.99 ERA with 11 walks and 51 strikeouts in 81 1/3 innings.

Maloney was the first to break the news that he was headed to Minnesota, as he announced it to his followers on Twitter hours before the Twins confirmed the move.

“thanks for everything reds…..but i am now a Minnesota Twin!!! looking forward to a great new opportunity!!” Maloney wrote on Twitter.

Gray, 29, appeared in 24 games with the Mariners, posting a 4.89 ERA with 17 walks and 16 strikeouts in 35 innings. He also made six appearances with the White Sox, posting a 2.70 ERA with four walks and seven strikeouts in 13 1/3 innings before being claimed off waivers by Seattle on May 13.

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