When the Twins were rolling hot early in the season, one of the biggest reasons for their success was The Big Inning. In recent days this phenomena has reared its head once again, with today's six-run second inning just the latest example. Four singles, a pair of doubles, and a Detroit error led to half a dozen runs for Minnesota, and it was enough to oust Tigers starter Randy Wolf before he could get out of the inning.
Byron Buxton had a game today, knocking one of those second inning doubles but also coming through with his first Major League home run. With two out in the top of the eighth, Buxton caught up with Jose Valdez's fastball and pulled it into the left field seats. The best part about it may have been the reaction from Buxton's teammates; they all gave him the silent treatment.
Except Eduardo Escobar on the end of the bench who couldn't help laughing when Buxton couldn't contain himself and gave Escobar a big hug.
Minnesota's biggest star today might have been Ervin Santana. He gave the Twins seven innings of one-run baseball, striking out five, walking one, and giving up just six hits. Josh Wilson doubled home Tyler Collins in the seventh, but that was the only time the Tigers were able to convert a scoring opportunity. Santana worked around situations with runners in scoring position in the first, second, and fourth innings. And of course Wilson was stranded on second in the seventh.
Michael Tonkin pitched a pair of scoreless innings to lock down the win, giving most of the bullpen a needed day off. Enough of Paul Molitor's bullpen should be sufficiently rested for tomorrow's series opener with Cleveland.
The Twins did their job today. We'll see what happens with those other two teams later today.
- Miguel Sano hit his first career triple today. He's surprisingly swift for a guy his size, although I thought he was going to fall over a couple of times between second and third.
- Joe Mauer is having a really rough time of things right now.
- Trevor Plouffe had the day off due to illness. Here's hoping he's ready to go again soon.
- Brian Dozier, Aaron Hicks, Eduardo Nunez, and Byron Buxton all had two-hit games.
- Dozier now has 39 doubles this year.
- Max Kepler made his MLB debut today with a pinch hitting appearance in the top of the ninth. He struck out.