Minnesota slapped Detroit starting pitcher Max Scherzer's offerings around early and often, scoring seven runs in the first two innings and coasting to a 10-3 victory over Detroit. Scherzer also allowed three runs in the fifth inning, giving him a ten-spot in the ER column, his worst start in the major leagues.
Given a seven-run lead to work with, Scott Baker was more than up to the admittedly minor task, striking out six and allowing three runs in seven innings. It could have been much worse, though; the Twins starter stranded runners in scoring position in four different innings. Given that Baker blew a five-run lead against Detroit in his last outing, that seven-run lead didn't feel particularly safe at several points, but the right-hander worked through his troubles.
At the plate, it's difficult to work through all of the notables in a ten-run game. Michael Cuddyer hit a three-run homer in the first inning, Denard Span slapped a two-run triple in the second - but perhaps the big story is catcher Wilson Ramos, who had three more hits, including a pair of doubles. Ramos drove in a run, as well.
Wilson Ramos is playing better than he is able.
That said, allow me to plead with you all to remember that Ramos is 22 years old, and has played 70 games above Single-A, and it's still a little early to be worrying about how Ramos and Joe Mauer can exist in the same organization.
Alex Burnett closed out the final two innings, though he did allow the apparently-unstoppable Austin Jackson (3-5, single, double, and an RBI triple) to make the score a bit closer in the ninth.
After the jump, the three Twins standouts of the night.
Honorable Mention: Denard Span
2-5 tonight, making the center fielder 7-14 in May so far. Perhaps Span just needed to turn a page in the calendar to break out of his rut.
3. Scott Baker
"Solid" is the word we're looking for. Three runs in seven innings isn't spectacular, but the Twins will take it, especially on this night.
2. Wilson Ramos
Three more hits, but we'll put him at second star because a pitch reached the backstop. You may now commence arguing about whether this was his fault or not. (It was scored as a wild pitch.)
1. Michael Cuddyer
Given the team's struggles with runners in scoring position, Cuddyer's first-inning homer felt a bit like a pattern had been broken. It eventually would prove to provide all the runs the team would need, as well.
Tigers vs Twins coverage