- Former Twin Garrett Jones powers the Pirates past San Francisco in 2-1 win
To say that Jones had a good night at the plate is a bit of an understatement. He hit two home runs: one of which came off of Tim Lincecum and the other was the game-winner in the bottom of the 14th, an absolute blast that landed in the Allegheny river. Jones has actually been having a pretty good season with the Pirates, batting .310/.360/.762 with 7 home runs in 46 plate appearances since being called-up from AAA. This is really only his second call-up in his entire career, so it's hard to say whether he will sustain this level of production. Obviously, the fact that he's 28 years old and has spent nearly his entire career in the minors doesn't bode well, neither does the fact that he batted .258/.312/.450 in all that time. He he has some power but he doesn't get on base much and strikes out a lot, and isn't particularly good in the field. Jones might prove to be well-suited to pinch-hitting duty though, so maybe he'll find a home with the Pirates.
Originally Drafted by the Braves in 1999, Jones spent a little over three years in their system until he was released in May of 2002. The Twins then signed him as a free agent, and he spent the next seven years in the minor league system. Jones had one stint with the big club in his entire tenure with the organization: as a courtesy call-up in September 2007. He pretty much blew his audition: hitting a disappointing .208/.262/.338 in 84 plate appearances while being pretty terrible on defense. Actually, most Twins fans probably know him best as the guy who accidentally broke Michael Cuddyer's foot during his rehab start almost a year ago. Jones was always popular with Wings fans, but the crowded outfield situation in Minnesota (and the only other position he plays is first base) made him expendable. He signed with the Pirates as a free agent in December of last year and seems to be making the most of his time in the big leagues. Whether he is simply a late-bloomer or playing over his head remains to be seen.
- Kubel powers Twins past Rangers in 5-3 victory
Jason Kubel hit a three-run homer off of Vincente Padilla in the fourth that gave the Twins the lead, though they would have to hold on and beat Texas. Kubel has been the third-best hitter on the team this season, batting .311/.368/.546 with 15 home runs and is well on his way to earning the $7 million contract extension he received in the off-season. Obviously, he still doesn't have as much power as the Twins would like, and he doesn't hit lefties well at all, but it's better than having Jason Tyner as the DH.