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Francisco Liriano Gets Sick, Fans Follow Suit

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In a game that is eminently forgettable, Twins fans had a few minutes of memorable, gut-wrenching panic.

Your projected Game 1 ALDS starter Francisco Liriano threw a pitch in the 4th inning, looked very uncomfortable, had the staff came to the mound to check on him, and left the game. As anyone who remembers that weekday afternoon in 2006 when the Franchise left the mound in agony, this scene invited some very unwelcome flashbacks. Fortunately, reports soon came in that he, along with Alexi Casilla, had to leave the game with a "non-baseball-related illness." Have not heard anything more specific than that, outside of Gardy saying "the flu bug" was going around. I used "gut-wrenching" in the lede for a reason.

Speaking of which, the Twins pitching staff and lineup did just that to any fan brave enough to watch the game after Liriano left.

With the wind blowing out to left, the Tigers took extended batting practice against almost anyone the Twins put out there. Miguel Cabrera got the party started immediately before Liriano left, belting a 2-run homer to open the scoring. Jeff MANSHIP came in, and after steadying the ship for a little bit, was chased in the 6th on a 2-run triple by Casper Wells (no offense meant to any readers, but WHO NAMES THEIR KID CASPER? WHAT THE HELL? ARE YOU HIGH? THAT'S IT! YOU'RE HIGH, AREN'T YOU? DON'T GET HIGH AND NAME YOUR KIDS. THIS IS EXTREMELY IMPORTANT.).

Jose Mijares actually acquitted himself well, allowing no earned runs ito score, but Alex Burnett was not nearly as effective, giving up a 3-run blast to Jhonny Peralta and a solo dong to Wells in back-to-back fashion.

The reason I haven't mentioned the Twins bats until just now is because they didn't show up until the very end, either. Justin Verlander dominated the AL Central champs all night, with the exception of Denard Span, who got on base thrice against the Detroit ace. Everyone else was just befuddled. The Twins got a courtesy run on some shoddy Detroit fielding in the 9th, making the final 10-1.

At some point during all this, Gardy got tossed for arguing that a triple should've been a ground-rule double. Those champagne hangovers are just the worst.

Studs:

Verlander

Wells

Span & Mijares. Getting Span healthy and effective for the playoffs is critical. Same thing with Mijares. For a game that was borderline unwatchable, these were two welcome developments for those looking to October.

Duds:

Everyone else in a Twins uniform.

Wherever Liriano and Casilla got take-out from.

The Yankees are going to lose, the Rays are going to win. So, for another night, you'll go to bed with your favorite team having the best record in baseball, albeit tied with Tampa.

Enjoy your weekend, everybody. Best wishes to our southern MN readers.