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Saying no-no to the no-no

August 15, 2010 - Per Peterson

I’ve criticized Twins manager Ron Gardenhire in the past, but I won’t blame him for pulling starter Kevin Slowey after seven-innings of no-hit baseball Sunday against Oakland. This is no time to be worrying about individual accomplishments — even historical ones — if you’re the Twins, who are in the middle of a pennant race and, like every other team in the league in a tight race, need to avoid injuries more than anything. The Twins would’ve been asking for trouble by sending Slowey back out and watching his pitch count rise into the hundreds. Slowey has elbow issues, missed his last start, and shouldn’t be pushed at this time of the year; he's too valuable, especially since it looks like he's back on track. The Twins do coddle their pitchers, yes, but this was an instance that coddling was called for. Maybe Slowey would’ve thrown an eight-pitch eighth inning and a 10-pitch ninth and got his no-no. But maybe he would’ve felt a twinge in his pitching arm, got yanked from the game and went on the disabled list. We’ll never know. But the risk far outweighed the reward in this case. All that matters is the Twins won (no thanks to a shaky bullpen effort) and moved three games up on the ready-to-implode White Sox in the division. That’s more important than a little history.


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