For the first three innings, Tigers pitcher, Doug Fister looked as if he would be the second pitcher to no hit the Twins. He struck out the side in the first inning, drawing only one swing. He retired the side in order in the second inning. Keeping the Twins off balance with a combination of 89-90 MPH fastballs, and big 75 MPH curveballs.
Liam Hendriks for his part was doing his job. He kept the ball on the ground, and thus in the park. It was his first start of the year without allowing a home run. For Hendriks, it seems like small, moral victories is will have to be enough for the Australian right handed pitcher. That's not to say that Hendriks didn't look good today, because he did. He hit a rough spot in the third inning, when Miguel Cabrera hit a huge sac fly to straight away center field, that sounded like a grand slam from the instant it left the bat. After an intentional base on balls to Prince Fielder, Delmon Young popped up to end the inning.
It was in that barrage of hits that Joe Mauer did something he had never done before. He got a base hit off of Doug Fister.
The Twins scored two more in the 5th, on singles from Ben Revere, lone Twins All-Star, Joe Mauer, and Justin Morneau. The next inning is when the game became interesting.
After allowing a base hit from Austin Jackson, and walking Quintin Berry, Miguel Cabrera hit a line drive double to left field. That was it for Hendriks. Anthony Swarzak came in and apart from a wild pitch which moved Cabrera to third, and a sac fly from Delmon Young, got it together and allowed nothing.
When it came time for the 9th inning, Glen Perkins came in and threw four mid 90s fast balls to Berry who struck out looking. After back-to-back singles from Miguel Cabrera and Prince Fielder, Delmon Young flew out, and Brennan Boesch struck out to end the game. Notes, studs and duds after the jump.
Studs: Joe Mauer (2-4, BB), Ben Revere (2-4, BB), Ryan Doumit (3-3), Brian Dozier (3-5), and the bullpen.
Notes: Joe Mauer is third in the AL in batting average, at .327, and is creeping up on Paul Konerko who is second at .335. He is still also leading the AL in OBP.