Manager Paul Molitor said Tuesday that he plans on using Brandon Kintzler and Fernando Abad late in games moving forward with May struggling in a setup role, Rhett Bollinger of MLB.com reports. The writing was on the wall for May's removal from the setup job -- Molitor brought him in in the third inning Monday after Ricky Nolasco was chased early. May has given up at least one run in five straight appearances (10 runs total in 3.1 innings), with his ERA ballooning from 1.89 to 5.64 within the span of two weeks. Glen Perkins (shoulder) recently suffered a setback, and May could return to the back-end mix eventually, but the process of regaining the skipper's trust will take time.
May allowed a run on two hits (one home run) in a third of an inning in Friday's loss to Toronto. He's given up eight runs over his last two innings over four appearances. May began the season strong with a 1.89 ERA and 27:8 K:BB ratio in 19 innings. He looked set to possibly take over the closer role with Kevin Jepsen struggling. However, May's implosion the past week may not make him the clear choice if Jepsen continues to struggle as the team's closer with Glen Perkins out indefinitely with a shoulder injury.
May gave up two runs and three hits in one inning in Sunday's extra inning loss to the Nationals, but earned his first hold of the season. His ERA rose to 3.60. Kevin Jepsen blew his second save in four chances in the ninth inning, but May has struggled a bit in April as his 3.60 ERA doesn't include two outings with key poor outings that cost the Twins games with a wild pitch and an error. He does have a 16:6 K:BB ratio in ten innings, so his strikeout totals could move him into the closer role eventually if Jepsen struggles.
May could be in the mix for saves while Glen Perkins (shoulder) is on the disabled list. Kevin Jepsen, who has experience as a closer, will likely get the first crack at landing the closing role for the Twins while Perkins is on the shelf, but May also figures to move into a potentially relevant fantasy role. Look for May to be the Twins' eighth inning man that could get some save opportunities in instances where Jepsen has pitched multiple days in a row.
May will begin the year working out of the Twins' bullpen, Rhett Bollinger of MLB.com reports. May came into spring as a candidate to win one of the open spots in the Twins' rotation, but a meltdown in his last outing took him out of the running. He'll work out of the bullpen for at least the beginning of the year, but Kevin Jepsen will likely get the first crack at being the setup man in front of closer Glen Perkins. Still, May's skill set will make him a reliever to keep an eye on this spring if Jepsen or Perkins struggle.
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