Burnett has 'taken off' in relief for Twins

Burnett has 'taken off' in relief for Twins

Burnett has 'taken off' in relief for Twins
DETROIT -- Reliever Alex Burnett has been impressive recently, as he enters Tuesday's game having thrown 16 scoreless innings dating back to May 23.

Burnett has allowed just four hits and four walks over that stretch with seven strikeouts. He recorded four key outs in Monday's 6-4 win over the Tigers, striking out Brennan Boesch on three pitches to end the seventh with two runners on base before tossing a scoreless eighth.

"He's just taken off," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "He's very confident right now. The ball's coming out of his hand really good -- all of his pitches. And he's got an exploding fastball, a nice little flip at the end that makes the ball jump."

Burnett, 24, has a 1.77 ERA with 18 strikeouts and 11 walks over 40 2/3 innings this season. It's been a big turnaround from last season, when he had a 5.51 ERA in 50 2/3 innings.