Baseball is a game of inches, goes the old cliche, and Monday night at Target Field, the Twins just couldn't quite get the bounces to go their way as the Dodgers eked out a hard-fought 15-0 victory. Starter Nick Blackburn was next to dominant for Minnesota, giving up just eight runs on twelve hits in four and one-third innings, but the Twins couldn't quite plate the runs needed to support him. Dodgers starter Chad Billingsley, who was allowing a .998 OPS to opposing batters in the month to date, managed to dance around two walks and four hits in six innings to pick up the victory.
The crowd at Target Field was treated to the usual exhibition of "doing the little things" from the Twins, who pride themselves on fundamentals. Anthony Swarzak only allowed one run on a wild pitch, and Tsuyoshi Nishioka successfully fielded three of the five ground balls that came his way, proving once again the team's foresight in acquiring him from Japan.
Unfortunately, while the Twins smashed their four hits, the balls the Dodgers hit just seemed to have eyes. The Twins pitching staff courageously held Los Angeles to only twenty-four hits and just three home runs. Just three LA starters - Tony Gwynn Jr., Matt Kemp, and Trent Oeltjen - had four hits in the game.
The same two teams will meet again Tuesday night in Minneapolis. One hopes that the cruel fates don't conspire against Minnesota yet again.