In 2015, 5he Twins' offense has rolled on the success of hitters succeeding with runners on base. When the team doesn't get runners on base, runs come at a premium.
Brian Dozier's tenth home run of the season briefly tied the game at 1-1 in the top of the third, but that was Minnesota's bright spot today. Phil Hughes left way too many pitches over the plate and it showed in his results, as he allowed 11 hits in just four and a third. If Dick and Bert take note of how often Kurt Suzuki has to move his glove, you know that the pitchers struggled.
On the other side of the hill, Red Sox rookie Eduardo Rodriguez was every bit as good as he was in his first start of the year. He worked in and out and, for most of the afternoon, had Twins hitters eating out of his hand.
Trailing 5-1 in the top of the sixth, the Twins had their one good chance to get to Rodriguez. Danny Santana's infield single was followed up by Rodriguez looking off-balance out of the stretch: he walked Dozier on five pitches, including a wild pitch. With runners on first and second and nobody out, and with Rodriguez unable to find his rhythm pitching out of the stretch, Minnesota was in business.
Except Shane Robinson couldn't do anything but swing. In a 12-pitch at-bat, Robinson swung at eight definite balls and one border line ball, fighting through a 12-pitch at-bat but ultimately failing not only by flying out but by fouling off enough pitches outside of the strike zone to have walked twice. Trevor Plouffe flailed at a first pitch eight inches outside before eventually grounding into a force out, and Torii Hunter couldn't get in front of an inside fastball like he wanted and Minnesota came away empty handed.
Eduardo Escobar's two-run home run in the ninth was too little, too late. Rodriguez had done too much damage by that juncture, and the Twins' offense had no answer for him. The Twins also had no answer for Dustin Pedroia, again, who was 4-for-5 this afternoon. Mike Napoli hit a solo home run off of Michael Tonkin which may never land.
Let's hope for better results tonight.
|less cowbell, more 'neau
COMMENT OF THE GAMETHREAD
less cowbell, more 'neau: "Heckler: Robinson, nobody knows who you are!"