Scott Baker has been here before, or so he thinks. He threw an inning of relief against Tampa Bay on May 7, but that is nothing compared to what is in store for him Tuesday. The 2003 second-round pick out of Oklahoma State will take the ball as the starter for the Minnesota Twins, just as the Twins are making their push for the American League Central crown.
He will be going up against the American League West leading Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim Angels and their slugger, Vladimir Guerrero when he makes his Major League debut as a starter. Covering for the injured Brad Radke, Baker took the roster spot of Brent Abernathy, who was optioned back to Rochester of the International League.
This season, Baker has pitched well for Rochester, although his record would not reveal that. He is 2-6, and has not won a game since May 20, but his ERA is a very solid 3.18. Baker, a right-handed hurler, is holding lefties to a .185 batting average, proving he can pitch against anybody.
While he did get touched up in his last outings, a five inning effort where he let up six runs (five earned), the 23-year old should be able to give the Twins some breathing room as they wait for Radke to get back to 100 percent.
At the time of his promotion, the 6'4'' Baker was ranked eighth in the International League in ERA as he lead a staff that is currently third in the League in ERA. Baker also threw a complete game shutout on April 23 against Ottawa, the game was in the middle of a span for Baker where he allowed one earned run in 23 innings, spanning four starts.