August 10, 2008
When Scott Baker struggled to get through a long sixth inning, but the Twins rallied in the top of the seventh to support him, you had the sense that the game wasn't going to fall the way of the home team. And when Baker came out for the seventh and pitched like a champ, including a massive battle with Mitch Maier that ended in a strikeout following nine consecutive foul balls, it was easy to believe the picture that the game had painted. The contender had found a way to bolster a lead on the back of a gritty pitching performance from a guy who didn't have his best stuff, and certainly the bullpen could keep the Royals in check for two innings.
It didn't happen. Matt Guerrier was charged with two runs in the eighth inning, and recorded a single out. It was his seventh appearance in 11 days, and it's no secret that his arm has betrayed him. He struggles to hit his spots, the breaking balls aren't working, and the Royals tagged him like they knew what was coming. Jesse Crain finished the inning following another one-out apperance by Dennys Reyes, and was impressive in his work. Crain struck out one and didn't allow a base runner in his 1.1 innings of work.
While the loss was charged to Craig Breslow, he pitched a very good couple of innings. He worked himself out of a second and third situation in the 10th and managed an impressive 11th before falling to the unlikely bat of Tony Pena. Carlos Gomez came up with a throw home in an effort to cut down Mark Teahen but it wasn't good enough, and the Kansas City Royals avoided a sweep with a hard-fought 12-inning victory. While I'm still positive on Breslow's overall appearance, my only question is: where was Joe Nathan in the 12th? Hindsight is 20/20, but I still have to wonder.
With the White Sox surviving a couple of Boston threats in Chicago, the Sox once again regain first place and lead the Twins by one half of a game.
On the plus side, the game thread was massive tonight!! Thanks to all who stopped by, particularly caseintheface who beat out all comers for sheer quantity (and some quality from time to time, right case?), as we broke TT's record for comments. For future reference, if we go over 300 comments again, I will try to create an overflow thread for convenience's sake. ROLL CALL!!
|Name||# of Posts|
Stars of the Game
#3 Adam Everett (2-for-4, 2 RBI, R)
#2 Justin Morneau (1-for-3, RBI, 3 BB)
#1 Scott Baker (7 IP, 7 H, 2 R, 1 BB, 7 K)