Arcia homers, but his defense puzzles Molitor

Twins left fielder commits costly miscues vs. Brewers

Arcia homers, but his defense puzzles Molitor

MILWAUKEE -- All of Oswaldo Arcia's tools -- good and bad -- were on display in the Twins' 10-5 loss to the Brewers on Wednesday night.

Arcia hit a two-run homer in the sixth that Statcast™ projected to go 445 feet, but also had several misplays in left field before making an impressive leaping catch in the left-field corner to rob Ryan Braun of extra bases.

He's been hot enough offensively to work his way back into the lineup as the regular left fielder, but his defense continues to be a work in progress. And with fellow outfielders Eddie Rosario and Byron Buxton struggling offensively, the Twins have gone with Arcia recently to help jump-start the offense.

"Sometimes you trade offensive players that maybe aren't your best defensive players," Twins manager Paul Molitor said. "And sometimes you've got to be able to deal with the consequences when it doesn't work out for you on the defensive side."

It didn't work out Wednesday, as Arcia botched two plays that led to runs while also taking a circuitous route on a two-run double from Jonathan Lucroy with the bases loaded in the fifth. Arcia might not have been able to get to Lucroy's double that hit off the base of the wall with a better route, but his other two miscues were glaring.

The first came in the third inning, when Chris Carter doubled into the left-center field gap and Arcia bobbled the ball, allowing Ryan Braun to score from first. And the second play came as part of a four-run seventh, when Lucroy hit a routine single to left, but it went under Arcia's glove and to the wall to allow Braun to score from first a second time.

Braun scores on single, error

"The first one we were trying to keep Braun from getting too much of a running start by holding him on with a 3-2 count, and he went a long way to get to the ball, but didn't come up with it cleanly, allowing the run to score," Molitor said. "And the next one, my guess is he was peeking to see if Braun was going to go first to third instead of watching the ball go in his glove. But that's just a guess."

Arcia has made an effort to get better defensively, having spent the offseason getting into better shape, and showed improved defensive abilities in Spring Training. He also showed what he's capable of with his jumping catch to rob Braun in the eighth, which had Molitor perplexed why he couldn't make the routine plays earlier in the game.

"I couldn't tell you," Molitor said. "I don't think it's concentration, because we've seen him elevate that part of the game."

Arcia's wall-crashing catch

Arcia declined to speak to reporters after the game, leaving Molitor to describe his play. The loss dropped the Twins to 4-11, and Molitor clearly wasn't happy with his team's defense.

"The loss is frustrating because we had chances and we battled and found a way to get it even with a few innings to play," Molitor said. "Sloppiness always concerns a manager when we don't execute. We know errors are part of the game, but you like to clean that up as best as you can."

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