The 31-year-old rookie from Japan--whom the Twins had showed interest in over the offseason, but ultimately passed on due to lingering arm issues--held the Twins hitless until the fifth inning when Jamey Carroll managed a soft line drive to center field. That hit would be the only one given up by Iwakuma, who pitched six innings with only one unearned run driven in on a sac-fly from Ben Revere.
Meanwhile, Twins starter Scott Diamond struggled. In his first appearance since being ejected for apparently attempting to hit Josh Hamilton with a pitch last Thursday, Diamond went seven innings, but gave up seven hits and five earned runs in the process. He surrendered all five earned runs on two extra-base hits--a two-run double by Kyle Seager in the third inning, and a three-run home run by Dustin Ackley in the fifth.
The Twins did provide a little excitement for the 29,854 hometown fans who paid to see the game in the bottom of the ninth inning. Josh Willingham singled and was driven in by a double from Ryan Doumit, and with two outs, Trevor Plouffe walked. But alas, Jamey Carroll promptly lined out to right field, and the game was over.
Studs and duds after the jump.Studs:
- Jamey Carroll: 1-for-3, 1 walk, 1 run scored.
- Alex Burnett: 1 inning pitched, 1 hit, 0 runs, 0 walks, 2 strikeouts.
- Kyle Waldrop: 1 inning pitched, 1 hit, 0 runs, 0 walks, 0 strikeouts.
- Joe Mauer: No homeruns, no triples, no doubles, no singles, no walks, 1 strikeout.
- Trevor Plouffe: 0-for-3, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts, 1 throwing error.