Walks drop, strikeouts rise in Twins' losing streak

Walks drop, strikeouts rise in Twins' losing streak

MINNEAPOLIS -- The offense was undoubtedly the biggest strength for the Twins in April, but they've struggled offensively in recent days, as they've seen their walk totals drop off and have struggled with runners in scoring position.

The Twins entered Saturday on a four-game losing streak, and they hadn't scored more than four runs in any of those contests. The Twins drew three or fewer walks in three of those losses, including on Friday, when they were shut out for just the second time this year. The team drew just two walks, while going 0-for-11 with runners in scoring position.

The Twins have been using walks to their advantage this year, as they're 11-6 when they draw four or more walks, but just 1-9 when they're limited to three or fewer walks. The Twins have also struck out at least nine times in three of their last four games.

"We're facing some pretty good pitching and we've missed some opportunities to get the runs in that we were getting in before," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "When you have chances with a man on third and less than two outs, you have to get them in. You have to put the ball in play, but we've had too many strikeouts."

Rhett Bollinger is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, and follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.