Minnesota Twins: Solving the Kevin Correia problem

Kevin Correia

Kevin Correia

The Minnesota Twins have had no problems whatsoever producing runs this year. There has only been one game this year where the team has been shut out. However, the main area of concern is still in their pitching, and probably one of the weakest links so far is starting pitcher Kevin Correia.

In 5 game appearances so far this season, Correia is 0-3 and has the worst ERA on the starting roster at 7.33. In 27 innings pitched (which is the third-most most behind Ricky Nolasco and Phil Hughes), Correia has given up 37 hits, including two home runs. On top of that, Correia has given up 25 runs, the most out of any other Twins pitcher. Of those, 22 have been earned, which ties with Nolasco as the most earned runs given up during his time on the mound.

In his last appearance, which was against the Detroit Tigers on Friday, Correia went just 2.1 innings and gave up eight runs on eight hits, including one home run.

Mike Pelfrey is also a starting pitcher that has not had the best start to his season, as well. He has posted a 7.32 ERA so far this year and has gone 0-2 in four starting opportunities. He’s given up 18 hits, five of those turning out to be home runs.

But, I still think that Correia has Pelfrey beat as the weakest link.

In the long run, I think that Correia simply needs more time on the mound to settle down. As the season wears on, Correia may eventually find his groove and get in a routine that will start producing the numbers he needs to succeed.

At this point, it shouldn’t be too concerning that the Twins need to look elsewhere for a new starting pitcher to replace Correia. As of Saturday, the Twins are sitting in second place in the AL Central Division, just one game behind the Detroit Tigers. That’s not bad for a team who is struggling on the mound.

Even Twins manager Ron Gardenhire has stated that he thinks that pitching will be okay. He doesn’t feel comfortable jumping the gun quite yet in making any changes to the rotation, and that the pitchers just need a little more time.

If it does end up that Correia may need to sit out for a while during the season, the Twins have reliever Samuel Deduno as the top option to possibly step up and fill in the starting position. This would more than likely be the best option, since Deduno is already on the active roster. Correia may not have to be sent down to the minor leagues but can stay and continue working on the reps he needs to improve throughout the season.

And I honestly don’t think that a trade is necessary. With the first month of the regular season coming to an end, it is still a bit early to truly consider any trading options. When the All-Star Break rolls around and Correia still has not improved, then I would highly consider possibly trading him for a better option.

So, while Correia still struggles, all we can do is wait and see if he can work his numbers down to a respectable area. If not, he may not see the end of the season with the Twins.

Related link: Gardenhire willing to give struggling starters more time