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Circle Change
04-10-05, 07:25 PM
If you're a baseball fan who enjoys watching pitching duels, you are in for a treat tonight.

It'll be Mark Beuhrle going up against Johan Santana on nationally televised Sunday Night Baseball on ESPN.

Buehrle (245.1) and Santana (228) were the American League's most durable horses in 2004, finishing 1 and 2 atop the AL's IP leaders. In his first outing of the 2005 season, Buehrle threw 8 innings of 2-hit, shutout ball against the Cleveland Indians. In Santana's opening start in Seattle, the Mariners prevented him from establishing his fastball early and smacked his low 90s four-seamer around the park, putting up 4 runs in what seemed to be the blink of an eye. After that 4th run however, Santana was reaching 94 mph on the gun and had found the magic touch on his circle change, putting up the following line: 4.2 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 6 K, retiring 14 of the final 15 batters he faced in the win.

Scouting reports from STATS, Inc. and Baseball-Reference on the starting pitchers:

MARK BUEHRLE -- LHP -- 6'2", 220 lbs

Career Numbers


Year Ag Tm Lg W L G GS CG SHO GF SV IP H R ER HR BB SO HBP WP BFP ERA *lgERA *ERA+
+--------------+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+--+------+----+----+----+---+----+----+---+---+-----+-----+-----+----+
2000 21 CHW AL 4 1 28 3 0 0 6 0 51.3 55 27 24 5 19 37 3 0 225 4.21 5.17 123
2001 22 CHW AL 16 8 32 32 4 2 0 0 221.3 188 89 81 24 48 126 8 1 885 3.29 4.62 140
2002 23 CHW AL 19 12 34 34 5 2 0 0 239.0 236 102 95 25 61 134 3 6 984 3.58 4.60 129
2003 24 CHW AL 14 14 35 35 2 0 0 0 230.3 250 124 106 22 61 119 5 1 978 4.14 4.48 108
2004 25 CHW AL 16 10 35 35 4 1 0 0 245.3 257 119 106 33 51 165 8 0 1016 3.89 4.92 126
+--------------+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+--+------+----+----+----+---+----+----+---+---+-----+-----+-----+----+
5 Yr WL% .605 69 45 164 139 15 5 6 0 987.3 986 461 412 109 240 581 27 8 4088 3.76 4.68 125
+--------------+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+--+------+----+----+----+---+----+----+---+---+-----+-----+-----+----+
162 Game Avg 15 10 36 31 3 1 1 0 221.3 221 103 92 24 53 130 6 1 917 3.76 4.68 125
Career High 19 14 35 35 5 2 6 0 245.3 257 124 106 33 61 165 8 6 1016 3.29 5.17 140
2004 Season Review

Few major league pitchers are as consistent as White Sox ace Mark Buehrle. He may not match up with other elite pitchers in terms of pure stuff, but his durability and command make him a cornerstone for a team trying to remodel itself from a power plant to one built around pitching and defense. Buehrle not only led the American League in innings pitched-he threw 17 innings more than anyone else, in part because Ozzie Guillen skipped the No. 5 starter whenever possible. Minnesota's Johan Santana and Brad Radke were the only AL pitchers with more quality starts than Buehrle, who had 23.

Pitching

Buehrle succeeds by keeping it simple. He attacks hitters with a low-90s fastball and a plus-plus changeup, working fast and throwing strikes. He used those two primary pitches to set up a cut fastball that sometimes comes and goes, but was generally in his 2004 arsenal. Buehrle yields a lot of home runs, in part because he is based at U.S. Celluar, and gives up ringing hits against batters who know he is going to challenge them in hitter's counts. He very rarely beats himself.

Defense

Buehrle is a steady fielder with quick reactions. He sometimes wants to force the action on bunts but has developed more patience with experience. He has an excellent pickoff move and is difficult to run on.

2005 Outlook

Buerhle continues to handle a heavy workload and still hasn't shown serious signs of wear and tear. One good sign for future seasons is that he increased his ratio of strikeouts per nine innings to 6.1 last season after it had dropped the three previous years. His mind seems free after signing a long-term contract, which has allowed his leadership skills to blossom. He remains a better bet for 16-18 wins and 225-plus innings than anyone else in the American League.

JOHAN SANTANA -- LHP -- 6'0", 205 lbs

Career Numbers


Year Ag Tm Lg W L G GS CG SHO GF SV IP H R ER HR BB SO HBP WP BFP ERA *lgERA *ERA+
+--------------+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+--+------+----+----+----+---+----+----+---+---+-----+-----+-----+----+
2000 21 MIN AL 2 3 30 5 0 0 9 0 86.0 102 64 62 11 54 64 2 5 398 6.49 5.27 81
2001 22 MIN AL 1 0 15 4 0 0 5 0 43.7 50 25 23 6 16 28 3 3 195 4.74 4.53 95
2002 23 MIN AL 8 6 27 14 0 0 2 1 108.3 84 41 36 7 49 137 1 15 452 2.99 4.42 148
2003 24 MIN AL 12 3 45 18 0 0 7 0 158.3 127 56 54 17 47 169 3 6 644 3.07 4.62 151
2004 25 MIN AL 20 6 34 34 1 1 0 0 228.0 156 70 66 24 54 265 9 7 881 2.61 4.73 182
+--------------+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+--+------+----+----+----+---+----+----+---+---+-----+-----+-----+----+
5 Yr WL% .705 43 18 151 75 1 1 23 1 624.3 519 256 241 65 220 663 18 36 2570 3.47 4.71 136
+--------------+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+--+------+----+----+----+---+----+----+---+---+-----+-----+-----+----+
162 Game Avg 12 5 45 22 0 0 6 0 187.7 156 77 72 19 66 199 5 10 773 3.47 4.71 136
Career High 20 6 45 34 1 1 9 1 228.0 156 70 66 24 54 265 9 15 881 2.61 5.27 182
2004 Season Review

Johan Santana was the American League's most dominant pitcher, overcoming early-season worries about his surgically repaired elbow to put together a four-month run that Sandy Koufax would have envied. Santana worked 21 straight quality starts, from June 9 until his final tuneup for the playoffs. He enjoyed a scoreless streak of 36.1 innings and set a team record with 13 consecutive victories. At season's end, he led the league in ERA, quality starts, opponent batting average and strikeouts while garnering his first AL Cy Young Award.

Pitching

Santana has three dominating pitches - a 94-MPH fastball, an 85-MPH slider and a 76-MPH changeup. The changeup is the most devastating, because it comes out of his hand looking just like his fastball. When it arrives 18 MPH slower than the heater, hitters swing and miss by embarrassing margins. The difference between 2003 and 2004 was his ability to locate his pitches, while in the past he relied more on changing speeds. Santana also learned how to throw his slider with different breaks at different speeds, giving him a slurve-like alternative to his other pitches.

Defense

Santana grew up playing shortstop and centerfield, so he has plenty of athletic ability. He showed more composure in dealing with grounders, bunts and baserunners in 2004, but the lefthander still committed four errors and posted a fielding percentage below .900 for the fourth straight season. While he is not a pickoff artist, Santana varies his moves to first often enough to make stealing against him difficult.

2005 Outlook

Stamina wasn't a concern in 2004, as Santana has learned to condition and maintain himself as a starting pitcher. Getting over his worries about his elbow also was important. The lone drawback to his pitching style is that he throws a lot of pitches, making complete games a rarity. He collected his first last summer. It probably won't be his last, as Santana should be one of the game's best pitchers for years to come.

MY TAKE

Mark Buehrle is one of, if not the most underrated pitcher in the entire American League. In his first four full seasons as a starter he's posted an ERA+ above 125 in three of them, thrown four or more CG's in three of them, and pitched 220+ innings in all four of them. He's a lefty, and is still only 26 years old. It wouldn't surprise me a bit to see him outpitch Santana tonight by throwing a shutout. As for Santana, he should be able to find it early because the weather won't be a problem as it was last Tuesday in Seattle. It would also be nice if the first few changeups of the night aren't bouncing in the dirt.

TONIGHT'S GAME

It's a Sunday night, the Yanks and Red Sox both fell to lesser teams and are done playing for the day, there are two of the AL's best pitchers going for their respective teams and there will actually be somewhat of an atmosphere tonight at the Metrodome as Santana makes his first home start of the year, so why not check it out? :)

FormerlyKnownAsMHHL
04-10-05, 07:27 PM
Twins win 5 - 3 is my call.

Mean Gene
04-10-05, 08:19 PM
Beuhrle is a very good pitcher as is Santana. Probably all boil down to who has the best night along with which team makes the least mistakes. Would have to give the edge to the twins playing at home.

Circle Change
04-10-05, 08:21 PM
First mistake: Matthew LeCroy tags his own pitcher!

Soriambi
04-10-05, 08:35 PM
I thought Santana was in trouble early, but he battled through it and only gave up one. He looked good in the second, thanks to a few nice (not spectacular, but nice) plays in the field, by Guzman and Cuddyer.

Circle Change
04-10-05, 08:41 PM
I thought Santana was in trouble early, but he battled through it and only gave up one. He looked good in the second, thanks to a few nice (not spectacular, but nice) plays in the field, by Guzman and Cuddyer.

He also appears to have found his changeup; he was bouncing them in the dirt just as I had feared and got himself into some trouble. After that 0-1 that had Peryznski way out in front of it, I finally was able to breathe easy.

Soriambi
04-10-05, 08:43 PM
1-0 Chisox after two, as the Twins leave Cuddyer stranded at 2B.

Circle Change
04-10-05, 08:46 PM
Now that's the 2ND hit that should've been an easy ground out!

Soriambi
04-10-05, 08:47 PM
Now that's the 2ND hit that should've been an easy ground out!

And a brainfreeze there on the SB, which was 100% thanks to blown coverage of second by someone, because it was a perfect throw there in plenty of time if someone was there.

Soriambi
04-10-05, 08:49 PM
I wonder why they're playing the IF in so early with a 1-0 lead. Buehrle's good, but I'd have confidence in my offense to score two. Sac Fly for Iguchi makes it 2-0 White Sox.

Cuban Connection
04-10-05, 08:49 PM
Small Ball Rules!!!

Circle Change
04-10-05, 08:50 PM
I wonder why they're playing the IF in so early with a 1-0 lead. Buehrle's good, but I'd have confidence in my offense to score two. Sac Fly for Iguchi makes it 2-0 White Sox.

Those two infield hits, which both should've been OUTS by any stretch of the imagination, have come home.

This game *could* be over already.

Circle Change
04-10-05, 08:52 PM
NO Mas, Johan.

Soriambi
04-10-05, 09:05 PM
There aren't many guys who miss the pitch Buehrle threw to Hunter there, and he wasn't one of them. 4-2 Twins on a 3-run homer.

Circle Change
04-10-05, 09:19 PM
Johan with 2 K's in the fourth on two very filthy changeups. It hasn't had the parachute movement yet this season, that's just straight up excellent arm action fooling them.

Circle Change
04-10-05, 09:32 PM
Santana strikes out the side in the fifth... still 4-2 MIN.

Soriambi
04-10-05, 09:33 PM
7 Ks in five for Santana. Much better start today than his first start.

Soriambi
04-10-05, 09:50 PM
Santana Ks two in the 6th. 9 Ks now.

Circle Change
04-10-05, 09:51 PM
Santana Ks two in the 6th. 9 Ks now.

And now he's putting them away quickly... good sign.

Moose35
04-10-05, 09:54 PM
This guitarist is one huge mofo

Soriambi
04-10-05, 09:57 PM
Nice piece of hitting by Crede waiting on a change and going the other way for a leadoff double in the 7th.

Soriambi
04-10-05, 10:03 PM
Nice piece of hitting by Crede waiting on a change and going the other way for a leadoff double in the 7th.

And then he Ks two and gets a groundout. 11 Ks. Great game for him.

Circle Change
04-10-05, 10:06 PM
And then he Ks two and gets a groundout. 11 Ks. Great game for him.

Is that a great changeup or what?

7 IP, 2 ER, 1 BB, 11 K

That's not too bad for not having nearly his best stuff.


This guitarist is one huge mofo

He's actually much smaller than your average pitcher at 6'0".

Soriambi
04-10-05, 10:09 PM
That's not too bad for not having nearly his best stuff.

I don't know, it seemed like he had some pretty darned good stuff after the first two. It seemed like he was working on all cylinders out there, and yes, after the first inning or so, his change looked excellent.

Circle Change
04-10-05, 10:12 PM
I don't know, it seemed like he had some pretty darned good stuff after the first two. It seemed like he was working on all cylinders out there, and yes, after the first inning or so, his change looked excellent.

Not on ALL cylinders... He was throwing 95 MPH and his changeup was excellent, but he's capable of spotting his fastball much better and didn't show much of his slider, which is killer on counts where a breaking ball isn't expected.

Soriambi
04-10-05, 10:18 PM
One out walk of Konerko for Rincon. They don't need walks in a three run game.

Soriambi
04-10-05, 10:22 PM
Lew Ford almost played a pop up into a base hit, but he makes a diving catch and the Twins escape.

Circle Change
04-10-05, 10:25 PM
I said it in the Mets thread and I still firmly believe that Rincon + Nathan will combine to be the most effective set-up/closer combo in all of baseball. For all the talk of how Santana isn't going to win the CY this year due to either poor run support or the bullpen blowing leads, I don't think it will really be all much much of a problem.

Santana has allowed more than 2 runs just twice in his last 25 outings and almost always goes at least 7 innings... they won't need to score too many runs. And secondly, Rincon/Nathan will slam the door for him and let him rack up W's.

Soriambi
04-10-05, 10:26 PM
Twins catch a break, as Hunter decides that it's probably foul and doesn't run, but has time to get to first when the popup is dropped and no one's at first.

PippyPinstripes
04-10-05, 10:27 PM
Is this our first NonYankee Twins thread here?

Soriambi
04-10-05, 10:27 PM
I said it in the Mets thread and I still firmly believe that Rincon + Nathan will combine to be the most effective set-up/closer combo in all of baseball. For all the talk of how Santana isn't going to win the CY this year due to either poor run support or the bullpen blowing leads, I don't think it will really be all much much of a problem.

Santana has allowed more than 2 runs just twice in his last 25 outings and almost always goes at least 7 innings... they won't need to score too many runs. And secondly, Rincon/Nathan will slam the door for him and let him rack up W's.

I agree that Rincon/Nathan is plenty good enough to close out Santana wins. I still think there are comparable bullpen tandems, but I don't see whre the hate comes from for the Twins pen, especially that part of it.

Circle Change
04-10-05, 10:29 PM
Is this our first NonYankee Twins thread here?

Hmm... I'm not sure, but I know that I'm one of the very few who post here. I only remember there being other Twins fans after Game 1 of the ALDS, nobody else (other than myself) was around by the end of Game 4.

Soriambi
04-10-05, 10:30 PM
I thought he trapped that for a second. Nice play by Dye.

Circle Change
04-10-05, 10:30 PM
I agree that Rincon/Nathan is plenty good enough to close out Santana wins. I still think there are comparable bullpen tandems, but I don't see whre the hate comes from for the Twins pen, especially that part of it.

I don't understand where any of the hate comes from... they've got some very solid and hardthrowing guys in that pen. Balfour, Romero (when he's mentally stable) and Crain are all very effective. Especially Balfour, who can spot 95 MPH fastballs with a nasty slider comparable to Nathan and Rincon's, IMO. You saw him in the ALDS last season and he performed well. But he's hurt right now.

Soriambi
04-10-05, 10:33 PM
Leadoff single for Pierzynski off of Nathan. Couldn't be another blown save for a closer coming up, could it? :eek:

Circle Change
04-10-05, 10:36 PM
Rincon and Nathan were both extended through 2006, btw.

Circle Change
04-10-05, 10:37 PM
96 MPH... Cya.

Soriambi
04-10-05, 10:39 PM
But no blown save today. Gets em 1-2-3 after the leadoff hit, and the ballgame is over. Good win for you guys, CC. Well played game by the Twins.

Circle Change
04-10-05, 10:43 PM
But no blown save today. Gets em 1-2-3 after the leadoff hit, and the ballgame is over. Good win for you guys, CC. Well played game by the Twins.

Thanks for participating in the thread, Sori. Really appreciate it.

As for the Twins tonight, the defense was a little more than shaky, but they got it done. Johan is back into form and ready to roll. 21-2 since June 9th of last season (including the '04 ALDS), and 16-0 since the '04 All-Star Break. Jon Miller had it wrong.


CHI WHITE SOX (2) VS MINNESOTA (5) - FINAL

CHI WHITE SOX ab r h rbi bb so lob avg
P Ozuna lf 4 1 1 0 0 2 2 .250
T Iguchi 2b 3 0 2 1 0 0 1 .389
C Everett dh 3 0 2 1 0 1 0 .364
P Konerko 1b 3 0 0 0 1 2 4 .333
J Dye rf 3 0 0 0 1 2 2 .263
A Rowand cf 4 0 0 0 0 1 2 .130
A Pierzynski c 4 0 1 0 0 1 1 .261
J Crede 3b 3 0 1 0 0 2 1 .143
a-S Podsednik ph 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 .238
J Uribe ss 3 1 1 0 0 2 1 .150
b-W Harris ph 1 0 0 0 0 1 1 .286

Totals 32 2 8 2 2 14 16

a-flied out to center for J Crede in the 9th; b-struck out looking for J Uribe
in the 9th.

BATTING: 2B - T Iguchi (3, J Santana); J Crede (1, J Santana). S - P Ozuna. SF
- C Everett , T Iguchi. RBI - C Everett (6), T Iguchi (2). Runners left in
scoring position, 2 out - J Dye 1, P Konerko 1, P Ozuna 1, T Iguchi 1. Team LOB
- 8.

BASERUNNING: SB - J Uribe (1, 2nd base off J Santana/C Miller).

FIELDING: E - T Iguchi (1, throw); C Politte (1, pop up). DP: 1 (J Uribe-T
Iguchi-P Konerko).


MINNESOTA ab r h rbi bb so lob avg
S Stewart lf 3 0 1 0 1 0 1 .231
J Castro ss 3 2 2 0 0 0 0 .600
J Mauer dh 3 0 0 0 1 1 3 .250
M LeCroy 1b 3 1 1 1 1 1 2 .333
T Hunter cf 4 1 1 4 0 0 1 .167
L Ford rf 4 0 0 0 0 1 3 .200
M Cuddyer 3b 4 0 1 0 0 1 1 .174
C Miller c 4 0 0 0 0 0 2 .000
L Rivas 2b 3 1 1 0 0 0 0 .385

Totals 31 5 7 5 3 4 13

BATTING: 2B - M Cuddyer (1, M Buehrle). HR - T Hunter (2, 3rd inning off M
Buehrle 2 on, 2 Out). S - J Castro. RBI - M LeCroy (4), T Hunter 4 (6). 2-out
RBI - M LeCroy, T Hunter 3. Runners left in scoring position, 2 out - M LeCroy
2, C Miller 2, S Stewart 1. GIDP - L Ford. Team LOB - 6.

BASERUNNING: SB - T Hunter 2 (2, 2nd base off C Politte/A Pierzynski, 3rd
base off C Politte/A Pierzynski).

FIELDING: PB - C Miller.


----------------------------------------------------
CHI WHITE SOX - 101 000 000 -- 2
MINNESOTA - 004 010 00x -- 5
----------------------------------------------------

CHI WHITE SOX ip h r er bb so hr era
M Buehrle (L, 1-1) 7 7 5 5 3 2 1 3.00
C Politte 1 0 0 0 0 2 0 3.37

MINNESOTA ip h r er bb so hr era
J Santana (W, 2-0) 7 7 2 2 1 11 0 4.50
J Rincon (H, 2) 1 0 0 0 1 2 0 0.00
J Nathan (S, 2) 1 1 0 0 0 1 0 0.00

Pitches-strikes: M Buehrle 100-66; C Politte 10-9; J Santana 108-82; J Rincon
19-11; J Nathan 12-9. Ground balls-fly balls: M Buehrle 12-7; C Politte 0-1; J
Santana 6-4; J Rincon 0-1; J Nathan 1-1. Batters faced: M Buehrle 31; C Politte
4; J Santana 29; J Rincon 4; J Nathan 4.

UMPIRES: HP--Larry Vanover. 1B--Sam Holbrook. 2B--Jim Wolf. 3B--Randy Marsh.

T--2:29. Att--28,089.
Weather: INDOORS



HU-AH!

twentyquestions
04-10-05, 10:46 PM
96 MPH... Cya.

Nathan's insane, able to locate that heat so precisely. Wow.

Circle Change
04-10-05, 10:50 PM
Nathan's insane, able to locate that heat so precisely. Wow.

I'm telling you man, I'm almost as high on the Rincon-Nathan Connection as I am Santana. Nathana mixes in a 4-seamer at 94-97 MPH with a powerful high 80s slider and disturbing 12-6 curve. Rincon throws a nasty 94+ MPH cut fastball with a mid 80s slider. Rincon with 2 holds, Nathan 2 saves... both of them are missing an ERA.

stupidpunchline
04-10-05, 10:58 PM
Game Scores:

Johan Santana - 65 (55.5 AVG)
Mark Buehrle - 42 (62.0 AVG)

tdel23
04-11-05, 11:18 AM
Nathan's insane, able to locate that heat so precisely. Wow.

who did the Twins give up to the Giants to get him?

twentyquestions
04-11-05, 11:20 AM
who did the Twins give up to the Giants to get him?

http://www.all-baseball.com/transactionguy/archives/007977.html

Giants send RHP Joe “Joe Rook” Nathan, minor-league RHP Boof Bonser and minor-league LHP Francisco Liriano to the Twins for C AJ Pierzynski.