Wetmore: 5 thoughts on Escobar, the contact play, and a call for Arcia
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The Twins couldn't take advantage of Tim Lincecum's lousy outing Friday night in San Francisco, and lost to the Giants, 6-2.
This column presents 5 thoughts from Friday's game.
As always, feel free to ask any questions or make any observations in the comments. If you have a unique baseball observation during a game, feel free to share it with me on Twitter (@DerekWetmore).
1. Oswaldo Arcia is eligible to be recalled Saturday and it would be a puzzling move if the Twins elected to leave him in Rochester. After he was activated from the disabled list and optioned to Rochester, he needed to spend 10 days (barring an injury on the Twins) in the minors before he could be promoted. That 10-day window ended Friday and Arcia taunted the Twins by going 3-for-5 with a home run and 4 RBIs as the DH. He's batting .315 at Rochester and would be one of the best hitters on the Twins right now.
It's entirely possible he stays in Triple-A until the Twins return home Monday. If they elect to keep Arcia in Rochester while Chris Colabello, Chris Herrmann, Eduardo Nunez and Chris Parmelee are on the Twins, I'll be very confused.
2. Twins outfielders showed limited range Friday and gave the Giants extra bases. Jason Kubel dove and missed a ball in left that turned into a triple for Angel Pagan. Chris Parmelee appeared to stumble as he pursued a ball in right that turned into a triple. Oswaldo Arcia might not be a great fielder, but Twins corner outfielders currently are not setting a high standard in that department.
3. Eduardo Escobar hit another double and made a good read to take an extra base on a passed ball Friday. Escobar drew a walk off the erratic Lincecum in the fourth inning. The next batter, Aaron Hicks, walked on a 3-1 offering that skipped away from catcher, Hector Sanchez. Escobar ran down to second and looked in to see where the ball had caromed to as he was running. Recognizing that Sanchez had to scramble to track down the ball by the Giants' dugout, Escobar simply kept running, rounding second and taking third on a walk wild pitch.
4. Escobar was erased at the plate one batter later. With first and third and one out, pitcher Kyle Gibson stepped to the plate. He tapped to third baseman Pablo Sandoval, who was playing in on the grass. Escobar took off for home and was thrown out on a fielder's choice. Escobar was criticized on the broadcast for making a poor baserunning decision, but I'll defend him by saying it seemed like the contact play was on. By that I mean the runners were instructed to take off as soon as they heard contact. Escobar may have been the victim of bad luck, when the batted ball went directly to a drawn-in infielder ready to make a throw to the plate. If the contact play was not called, then yes, probably a poor baserunning decision.
5. Sam Deduno will pitch Saturday and Ricky Nolasco will pitch Sunday. I wonder if that means Josmil Pinto will catch Saturday, to allow him to pair with Deduno and to allow Suzuki to catch Nolasco in the series finale.