Phil Hughes' last season as a New York Yankee didn't go as planned as he finished 2013 with a 4-14 record and a 5.19 ERA. Hughes departed the Bronx for a three year $24 million deal with the Minnesota Twins this past off-season.
Hughes has found early success in Minnesota and has impressed as a frontline starter for the Twins. Hughes currently possesses a 5-1 record with a 3.23 ERA, 1.19 WHIP and 50 strikeouts in 61 1/3 innings. Hughes has been pitching atop the rotation for the Twins and has all the looks of a future ace for Minnesota. In fact, the future might be now for the 27 year old.
The Twins spent $73 million this past off-season and most of it was to repair their beleaguered starting rotation. The Twins inked Hughes and former Dodger and Marlins starter, Ricky Nolasco to multi-year deals. Although Hughes has posted impressive stats this season, his start in Minnesota was less than stellar.
In his first three starts with the Twins, Hughes failed to last more than five innings in either start. Hughes held a 7.20 ERA after those initial starts, giving up 4 runs in each game. Then on April 20, everything changed for the former Yankee prospect. In his seven games since, Hughes has put up All-Star caliber numbers. He's compiled seven quality starts and an overall 5-0 record. Hughes has pitched 46 1/3 innings and rung up 30 strikeouts, allowing only one walk. Hughes who has shown impeccable control in Minnesota, has not walked a batter in almost six weeks.
Hughes is happy with his new found success in Minnesota, but he wishes things ended on a more positive not for him in the Bronx. Hughes especially expressed disappointment with his final season in pinstripes. "Sometimes you wish you didn't leave a place on such a bad note," Hughes said. "I know some fans will remember me more for that than anything else."
Hughes feels that he has a fresh start in Minnesota and he welcomes the opportunity that he has with the Twins. "That's life, and I'm certainly glad to have landed here," Hughes said. "It's a whole new chapter, and an opportunity to hit the reset button and move on." Hughes is scheduled to pitch against his former team on Sunday at Yankee Stadium as the Twins begin a three game set with the Yankees tonight in the Bronx.
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