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MLB Minnesota Twins

Early Grades For the Minnesota Twins’ Starting Rotation and Bullpen

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Early Grades for the Minnesota Twins' Pitching Staff

Minnesota Twins Pitching
Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

The Minnesota Twins made some moves this offseason to add proven options to their starting rotation, and a couple of other veterans are potential trade bait later in the season if they pitch well.

Here are my early grades for each of Minnesota’s five starters, and the bullpen as a group.

Ricky Nolasco

Ricky Nolasco Minnesota Twins
Jason Miller-Getty Images

Ricky Nolasco

Ricky Nolasco Minnesota Twins
Jason Miller-Getty Images

Nolasco has a 6.08 ERA with 12 strikeouts and seven walks in his first four starts this season. That is not what the Twins’ envisioned when they signed him to a four-year deal in November, but there is some hope he’ll get better as the weather gets warmer.

Grade: D

Phil Hughes

Phil Hughes Minnesota Twins
Hannah Foslien-Getty Images

Phil Hughes

Phil Hughes Minnesota Twins
Hannah Foslien-Getty Images

Hughes has gone exactly five innings and allowed four earned runs in each of his first three starts (7.20 ERA), so he'll look to start a better trend on Sunday against Kansas City.

Grade: D

Mike Pelfrey

Mike Pelfrey Minnesota Twins
Hannah Foslien-Getty Images

Mike Pelfrey

Mike Pelfrey Minnesota Twins
Hannah Foslien-Getty Images

Pelfrey has more walks (12) than strikeouts (seven) over his first three starts, which explains his inflated ERA (7.98). When you add in his glacial pace when runners are on base, watching him pitch becomes miserable for everyone watching.

Grade: D-

Kevin Correia

Kevin Correia Minnesota Twins
Ed Zurga-Getty Images

Kevin Correia

Kevin Correia
Ed Zurga-Getty Images

Correia has gone at least six innings in three of his first four starts, though his 5.47 ERA is not ideal. All in all, his performance thus far is about what should be expected.

Grade: C+

Kyle Gibson

Kyle Gibson
Hannah Foslien-Getty Images

Kyle Gibson

Kyle Gibson Minnesota Twins
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Gibson won a spot in the starting rotation during the spring, and after shutting the Toronto Blue Jays out over eight innings on Thursday he now has a 0.93 ERA in three starts this season.

Grade: A

Bullpen

Glen Perkins Minnesota Twins
Hannah Foslien-Getty Images

Bullpen

Glen Perkins
Hannah Foslien-Getty Images

The Twins’ bullpen has been mostly good (Glen Perkins, Brian Duensing, Samuel Deduno), but Jared Burton’s 12.00 ERA in six appearances knocks the group’s grade down.

Grade: B