This game could've gone better, but it could've gone much worse. You could make the argument, very easily that this was Francisco Liriano's best start of the season. But, keeping in mind that if you say that, you are not saying much. Liriano labored through the first inning, giving up a lead off single to Macier Izturis. A wild pitch, and two ground outs later, the Angels had the first run of the game. Liriano did come back in the second inning and struck out both Mark Trumbo and Howie Kendrick. But, as we all know, with Francisco Liriano this season, nothing good can stay, as Alberto Callaspo took him deep to plate two more runs in the third inning.
You might be asking yourself, "self, why isn't Brady talking about the Twins offense?" and the reason for that is because up until the bottom of the fifth inning, there was no offense from the Twins unless you want to talk about the double that Peter Bourjous stole from Ryan Doumit in an almost Revere-ian way. Or you want to hear about Trevor Plouffe's walk in the third. Or Erik Komatsu getting a hit just to be erased by Jamey Carroll lining into a double play. It wasn't until the bottom of the fifth inning until you felt like the Twins woke up a little bit.
It started out simply enough. Chris Parmelee singled to right field, and Plouffe walked again. Komatsu got another hit. The bases were loaded, with no outs and Jamey Carroll walked up to the plate. He popped up to second. The Twins were a double play away from letting another opportunity like that just evaporate. And it would've happened too, as Denard Span dribbled a ball up to Izturis at shortstop, but Komatsu took a hard slide and there was no throw to first base, allowing Parmelee to score. It was no 4-1, Angels on top.
Anthony Swarzak came into the game in the 6th inning and got through it unscathed. In the seventh, however, he walked Iannetta, Bourjous put down a sacrifice bunt, Macier Izturis singled to reach base for the third time in the game, and Albert Pujols came through with a single to score the run. 5-1, Angels. And that was the score until the 8th inning, when Jamey Carroll hit a ground rule double and Brian Dozier brought him to third with his first career hit. Joe Mauer came through for the first time in seemingly forever and lined a single to right field scoring Carroll. Doumit followed it up with a sac fly to score Dozier. Then all hell broke loose.
Glen Perkins came on to pitch the top of the 8th inning, and gave up a bunt single to Peter Bourjos, who came around to score on Callaspo's single. Callaspo came around to score with Torrii Hunter who walked before Erik Komatsu dropped a fly ball from Mark Trumbo. 8-3 would be your final score.
Studs and duds after the jump.
Studs: Francisco Liriano. Not a good start by any means, but still his best start of the evening. Joe Mauer for breaking out of a terrible slump. Brian Dozier for getting his first hit, and for a few great plays in the field. And Trevor Plouffe for walking twice today. He's walked 10 times in 16 games this season. He walked 25 times in 81 last season.
Duds: Everybody else.