Kyle Gibson did a nice job working around some trouble in the first inning. Ian Kinsler's 1-0 fastball turned into a hit to open the game, Torii Hunter walked, and then Kinsler stole third. With nobody out and Miguel Cabrera at the plate, things could have gotten very ugly very, very quickly. But they didn't. Cabrera struck out and walked away shaking his head, whiffing on a two-seamer with some wicked sinking action. And then Victor Martinez rolled into a 3-6-1 double play.
It was an impressive rebound from a potentially destructive situation. A moment off of which to build; a moment of which to be proud.
That momentum didn't stick around. Four of the first five Tigers to step up to the plate in the second reached base, before a Brian Dozier error and Cabrera homer capped off a six-run frame. It happened in 24 pitches, so I'm fairly sure I have whiplash. Luckily, this is America and there is probably a way I can make money from this.
Had Dozier Dozier caught the lazy relay from Danny Santana at second base with two outs, he would have been too late to record the final out of the inning anyway. But he then foolishly went home, trying to make a play, and it backfired. There wasn't an out that could have been had on either end of that sequence, though, so it's hard to put too much blame on Dozier for extending the inning - even if Andrew Romine did advance to third on the throw.
Dozier did make amends, driving a three-run homer to left field to cut the deficit in half. Santana had doubled on an 0-2 pitch, and Dozier homered on the same count. Kurt Suzuki then coaxed out the second walk of the inning, and for a moment it did look like the Twins could answer the Tigers in kind. But Max Scherzer settled down and picked up the last two outs.
The Twins would put two runners on in the fourth and fifth, and waste doubles from Eduardo Escobar in the sixth and the eighth, but ultimately wouldn't score again in spite of having plenty of base runners. Victor Martinez put the proverbial nail in the coffin with a three-run homer in the bottom of the seventh.
Today was a bit of a let down following Phil Hughes' performance last night, but that's baseball. We'll see if Samuel Deduno can take down Robbie Ray tomorrow afternoon to secure a series victory against the AL Central pace-setter.
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- Joe Mauer was 1-for-3 with a walk in his return.
- Chris Colabello was 0-for-4 with three strikeouts, and is now 8-for-58 (.138) since April 24. He's hit one homer and one double in that period, and has driven in just four runs. His triple slash has fallen from .346/.386/.577 to .257/.308/.419. In those 14 games he's struck out 21 times (including a streak of 13 games with at least one), and collected just five walks. It's officially time to hope there are adjustments that Colabello can make.
- Eduardo Escobar, you guys. So many unexpected players with hot starts to the season.
- Anthony Swarzak threw four shutout innings before Michael Tonkin's three-run seventh. Suffice it to say that Deduno will need to go as long as possible tomorrow since he won't have a long man to pick him up.