Found June 06, 2012 on Fox Sports North:
Mlb-rays-twins-jul
Since being inserted back into Minnesota's starting rotation, Francisco Liriano has looked like the Liriano of old. Including Tuesday's start against Kansas City, Liriano has allowed just one run over his last 12 innings.But Liriano wasn't helped out at all by his offense Tuesday, as the Twins fell, 1-0, to Bruce Chen and the Royals. Still, it's an encouraging sign that perhaps Liriano might not be a lost cause after all.In six innings of work Tuesday, Liriano struck out eight batters and allowed just one run on four hits and one walk. He now has a 0.75 ERA, 16 strikeouts and just three walks in his two starts after being put back into the rotation last week. "That's what we were hoping for, come back and throw the ball over the plate and get into the second half of games and give us a chance, and he did that again," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said after Tuesday's loss. "He's throwing the ball well."Prior to his demotion to the bullpen, Liriano was 0-5 with a 9.45 ERA and walked 19 batters in 26 23 innings. While pitching in relief, Liriano made five appearances, allowing four runs on seven hits and seven walks in 7 13 innings.But Tuesday, Liriano looked more like the pitcher he was during his dominant rookie year in 2006, or at least in 2010 when he was 14-10 with a 3.62 ERA. His slider was fooling hitters, and he was able to locate his fastball."We didn't know what to expect with Francisco. He's been up and down. They put him in the pen," said Royals outfielder Jeff Francouer, who struck out twice against Liriano. "We saw his last start and it looked like he was as good tonight as he's been since I've seen him."In Tuesday's impressive outing, Liriano accomplished something rarely done in baseball. In fact, it's only been done one other time in Twins history. In the fourth inning Tuesday, Liriano struck out four batters, something that had been previously accomplished just 25 times in the American League.Liriano led off the fourth inning by striking out Mike Moustakas on 10 pitches. He then got Francouer swinging at a wild pitch. The ball got away from catcher Drew Butera, allowing Francouer to advance to first on the swinging strikeout.With one out but two strikeouts already in the inning, Liriano then fanned Eric Hosmer on four pitches and struck out Brayan Pena in a six-pitch at-bat for his fourth strikeout of the fourth inning.The only run Liriano allowed the only run scored all game, for that matter came in the second inning. After a one-out single by Francouer, Hosmer grounded into a forceout as Minnesota was unable to turn what would have been an inning-ending double play. Hosmer then stole second and later scored on a single to left by Brayan Pena for what would hold up as the game-winning run."We just missed a double play over there, and that ended up costing us the one run, the lone run," Gardenhire said. "But we were happy with Frankie."With the way Liriano was pitching earlier in the year erratically giving up at least four runs a game in short starts Minnesota couldn't have asked for much more from the left-hander over his last two starts. His offense did him no favors Tuesday, but Liriano still provided a glimmer of hope for the 21-34 Twins."I don't know if him moving to the pen lit a fire under him or what, but he's good," Francouer said. "When he gets ahead, gets that first pitch over, it makes everything else really good. I was really impressed with him. It's a good sign obviously for Minnesota and their fans, because he's back on track."Robby Incmikoski contributed to this report.Follow Tyler Mason on Twitter.
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
RELATED ARTICLES

Twins Draft TREcap

So, DWG emailed me and asked me to do a Twins' draft analysis.  I thought I was crushing it with like 2 posts in a week, but I guess more is expected here at DownWithGoldy.com.  Hope I don't get burned out.  Speaking of DWG, is that what you guys and gal(s) know him as?  I mean, he doesn't use his real name and he posts as WWWWWWW, what's that all about?  I also...

Twins' bullpen continues to gain steam

While Minnesota's starting pitching is slowly coming around after a rough start to the year for the rotation, the Twins' bullpen has remained steady.The Twins' relievers demonstrated that once again on the recent road trip, capping it with four scoreless innings of relief in Wednesday's 4-2 win in the series finale against Kansas City. Jeff Manship, Jared Burton,...
BETTER THAN 'STARSHIP'

Jeff Manship's name misspelled on jersey

Minnesota Twins relief pitcher Jeff Manship was forced to wear a jersey with his name misspelled during his appearance in Wednesday night's game against the Kansas City Royals. Manship made his first road appearance of the year for the Twins as he pitched the bottom of the sixth inning, but had to do it with a jersey that had 'Mansihp' printed on the back. Obviously...

Twins draft versatile Buxton No. 2 overall

MINNEAPOLIS With the No. 2 overall pick in the 2012 Major League Baseball draft, the Minnesota Twins selected Byron Buxton, a five-tool outfielder from Appling County High School in Georgia.Minnesota's pick became complicated after the Houston Astros took Puerto Rico shortstop Carlos Correa with the No. 1 overall pick. Many were predicting the Astros to take either Buxton or...

Twins pick pair of right-handers to end 1st

MINNEAPOLIS After taking Byron Buxton with the No. 2 overall selection in Major League Baseball draft, the Minnesota Twins made two more selections Monday.With the No. 32 overall pick the teams first pick in the compensatory round Minnesota took Puerto Rican right-hander Jose Berrios out of Papa Juan XXIII High School. The 6-foot, 190-pound Berrios, 18, was the second high school...

Twins recall 1B Parmelee, option RHP De Vries

The Minnesota Twins recalled first baseman Chris Parmelee from Triple-A Rochester on Thursday and optioned right-hander Cole DeVries. Parmelee began the year on the Twins' 25-man roster but struggled offensively. In 27 games, he hit just 179 with three RBI and 21 strikeouts. The demotion seemed to help his bat, however, as he was hitting .375.500.708 in 15 games with the Red...

Blackburn returns from DL against Kansas City

With scoreless outings in four of six starts, Kansas City starter Felipe Paulino is turning in the best stretch of his career. The journeyman brings a 19-inning home scoreless inning streak into Wednesday night's finale of a three-game set between the Royals and Minnesota Twins. After missing the first month of the season due to forearm tightness, Paulino (3-1, 1.70 ERA) made...

Pavano to DL with old injury

Minnesota Twins pitcher Carl Pavano is heading to the disabled list with a right anterior capsular strain. The worst part about this is that it’s taken this long for it to happen and the injury could have been made worse. The reason is Pavano underwent an MRI for the strain a month ago. @RhettBollinger: Pavano is going on the disabled list with a right anterior capsular strain...

Twins Update

Tonight's Twins update is listed here on my other Twins blog at ProSportsBlogging.com.

Paulino injures right groin, Royals fall to Twins

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Nick Blackburn shook off a slow start and pitched five effective innings, helping the Minnesota Twins beat the Kansas City Royals 4-2 on Wednesday night. Justin Morneau hit a go-ahead, two-run single with two out in the fifth as Minnesota won for the fourth time in five games. Morneau, Ben Revere and Ryan Doumit each had two hits. Blackburn (2-4), who was...

Keller, who helped bring Carew to Twins, dies at age 84

During baseball's 1980 winter meetings in Honolulu, Hal Keller was walking through the lobby of the host hotel with his two sons, when he saw future Hall of Famer Rod Carew."I had not seen Rodney in years,'' remembered Keller. "I walked up him, and said, 'I don't know if you remember me.' He said, 'Oh yeah. You taught me to hit.'"Keller...

Indians take Minnesota prep RHP Mitch Brown

Some wondered whether the Twins would take the top high school player in the state of Minnesota in this year's draft. Instead, the Cleveland Indians selected Rochester Century right-hander Mitch Brown in Tuesday's second round with the No. 79 overall pick. Brown is committed to play college baseball at the University of San Diego and now must make a decision whether to go...

Pirates pick Barrett Barnes 45th overall

With the compensation pick afforded to them by Ryan Doumit's signing with the Twins, the Pirates took Barrett Barnes, an outfielder from Texas Tech. He's a center fielder, he's got some pop, and Tim Williams guesses that he'll sign for less than slot so the Pirates can apply some of that money towards Mark Appel. That's about the best the Pirates can hope for...

Chen outduels Liriano as Royals beat Twins 1-0

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Bruce Chen outdueled Francisco Liriano to make a lone run scored in the second inning stand up Tuesday night, giving the Kansas City Royals a 1-0 victory over the Minnesota Twins. Chen (5-5) allowed four hits without a walk to win for the fifth time in six starts. The 34-year-old left-hander relied on some veteran guile to strike out five without allowing...
MLB 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!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.