Originally posted on Fox Sports North  |  By TYLER MASON  |  Last updated 9/24/13
MINNEAPOLIS -- Adversity has been something Twins pitcher Mike Pelfrey has become accustomed to over the last few years. So a flu bug was nothing more than a mere annoyance Monday against Detroit as the right-hander made what turned out to be his final start of the season. Admittedly not feeling well as he dealt with the flu, Pelfrey took the mound against the Tigers in the Twins' series opener at Target Field. As Detroit rolled out ace Justin Verlander, Pelfrey nearly matched the powerful right-hander through six innings. While Pelfrey didn't earn a decision in Minnesota's 4-3 extra-innings win, he ended his 2013 season on a high note. After the game, Pelfrey said Monday was his last start of the year. He was scheduled to pitch again on Saturday, but since he's one year removed from Tommy John surgery, Pelfrey and the Twins felt it was best to call it a season following Monday's performance. "(Pitching coach Rick Anderson) always told me he wanted me to end on a positive note, so maybe if that would have happened three starts ago I would have finished then," Pelfrey said. "I think this was probably it." It's been an up-and-down season for Pelfrey, who signed with Minnesota as a free agent this past offseason after spending the first seven years of his career with the New York Mets. A first-round pick by the Mets in 2005, Pelfrey's 2012 season was shortened to just three games after he had season-ending surgery on his right elbow. The timing of the surgery wasn't great, as Pelfrey became a free agent at the end of 2012. But Minnesota was willing to give the 29-year-old right-hander a shot on a one-year contract. Following Monday's outing, in which he allowed just one run in six innings, Pelfrey lowered his season ERA to 5.19. That ERA and his 5-13 record are certainly not eye-popping numbers, but Pelfrey believes he had some good outings this year. That included Monday, as he struck out five Tigers batters and limited the damage to just one run. Pitching with the flu, Pelfrey felt his fastball was perhaps the worst it's been all season. "I can't tell you if that's fatigue or me feeling weak from being sick," Pelfrey said. "The secondary stuff was probably the best it's been all year. Obviously it was good enough to get by and survive. I think that's an encouraging sign." The only run Pelfrey allowed Monday came in the top of the fifth inning. Ramon Santiago singled to center and advanced to second on a base hit by Austin Jackson. Former Twins center fielder Torii Hunter then drove in Santiago for the first run of the game. But Pelfrey was able to strand Jackson at third and Hunter on second to escape the fifth without any further damage. Pelfrey again left a runner in scoring position in the sixth when he got Santiago to fly out to end the inning. He walked off the mound trailing 1-0, having thrown his last pitch of the 2013 season. "Our starting pitcher was fantastic," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "It didn't look too pretty on the mound, but a really, really nice job of hanging in there. That was fun to watch. That was a guy that was not feeling too awful well and did a really nice job against a very, very tough lineup over there." By throwing six innings Monday, Pelfrey earned himself a 100,000 bonus. His contract includes incentives for various innings marks. He surpassed 150 innings in Monday's outing, which netted him the bonus. He has another incentive for 160 innings, but he would have needed to throw 7 innings in another start to reach that; his longest outing this season was just seven innings. The contract incentives weren't on the forefront of Pelfrey's mind. Instead, he was pleased to end his 2013 season on a high note with a strong start -- and a walk-off win for his Twins team. After the game, Pelfrey reiterated the fact that he would like to be back in Minnesota next year. He'll hit free agency once again after the season is over but enjoyed his time with the Twins organization. "I want to come back. I've expressed that to Andy, to Gardy, to Terry (Ryan)," Pelfrey said. "Ultimately it's in their hands what direction they want to go. But I told them I'd love to come back. We'll cross that bridge when it gets here. "Minnesota's been great. It's been very refreshing coming from New York. I've enjoyed my time here and hopefully there will be a lot more." Follow Tyler Mason on Twitter
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Cavaliers showing trade interest in Kings’ Ben McLemore

Report: Rockets shopping Dwight Howard

Jim Fassel takes issue with Cam Newton's warmup MVP cleats

Report: NFL upholds Vontaze Burfict’s three-game suspension

NFL owners reportedly concerned with Raiders-gang connections in LA

T'Wolves getting calls about Rubio ahead of trade deadline

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Jarryd Hayne wants to return to NFL

Jones: I ‘scream in my pillow’ being at Super Bowl, not in it

Phil Jackson reportedly does not have opt-out until 2017

Byron Scott: D’Angelo Russell’s immaturity ‘at times’ a problem

Kevin Love: Shoulder injury ‘just a stinger’

Nets’ Joe Johnson would ‘welcome’ a trade

Eight most potentially combustible MLB clubhouses

Matt Barnes coyly denies IG post was shot at Derek Fisher

NHLers who should be dealt to contenders before deadline

Robert Kraft compares Tom Brady to Peyton, Eli Manning

WATCH: Markieff Morris appears to flip the bird to heckler

Prediction for each NBA award heading into the All-Star Break

Did Clippers reenact Paul Pierce stabbing during pregame intros?

Kobe Bryant gives LeBron James his game-worn Kobe 11s

Terrell Owens tells Skip Bayless to stop ‘misinforming’ people

8-year-old Panthers fan writes adorable letter to Cam Newton

Donovan McNabb: I did not throw up during Super Bowl loss

Seven teams that must target a quarterback in 2016 NFL draft

Fighter says sex before fight partly to blame for loss

All Sports News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

QUIZ: Name the winners of the NBA Slam Dunk Contest

Thank you Daniel Bryan

The timeless greatness of Jaromir Jagr

The NCAAB power rankings

Report: Kings to keep coach George Karl

Was Alain Vigneault right about NHL's lack of punishment towards Wayne Simmonds?

Report: Knicks fire coach Derek Fisher

The best and worst commercials from Super Bowl 50

Best and worst from Super Bowl 50

Six best plays from Super Bowl 50

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker