At one point, this looked like it would be a high-scoring affair just like last night’s 14-10 victory. However, once the game was turned over to the bullpens, just a single run was scratched across and ultimately it was the deciding run as the Twins won 6-5.
In spite of a costly fielding error, Max Kepler was the star in this game. It was his RBI single in the 5th inning that tied the game at 5 after the Phillies had taken a 5-2 lead in the top of the inning, then his sac fly in the 7th pushed across the go-ahead run. Additionally, he added a nice diving catch to rob Phillies catcher Cameron Rupp of a hit in the top of the 8th.
Early in the game, it was back-and-forth as the Twins took an early lead on an RBI single from Trevor Plouffe. Although Plouffe and baserunner Robbie Grossman advanced an additional base thanks to right fielder Peter Bourjos’ throw to home plate, the Twins couldn’t capitalize any further as Eduardo Escobar struck out. The Phillies answered right away in the top of the 2nd off starter Kyle Gibson on a solo home run from Rupp, but the Twins took the lead back with an RBI single from Eduardo Nunez. However, the Phillies came back with yet another solo homer, this time from Andres Blanco to tie the game at 2.
Gibson and Phillies starter Adam Morgan kept it deadlocked at 2 until the top of the 5th when the Phillies recorded three consecutive singles with one out. The third, a single to right field from Blanco, skipped past Kepler and went all the way to the wall to score two runs. Despite an intentional walk to Maikel Franco that brought up the ghost of Ryan Howard, Howard made the Twins pay by singling to center to score the third run of the inning.
Nevertheless, the Twins responded once again in the bottom of the inning. Robbie Grossman led off with a single and Trevor Plouffe followed with a double. Escobar then hit an opposite-field triple that just eluded Bourjos in right, then Kepler tacked on his RBI single to tie the game. Then in the bottom of the 7th off reliever David Hernandez, Kepler followed singles from Plouffe and Escobar with his sacrifice fly that provided the deciding run in the game.
WP: Taylor Rogers (3-0)
LP: David Hernandez (1-2)
S: Fernando Abad (1)
Trevor Plouffe (3-for-4, 2B, 2 R, RBI), Eduardo Escobar (2-for-4, 3B, R, 2 RBI), Max Kepler (1-for-3, 2 RBI, nice diving catch in 8th)
Kyle Gibson (6 IP, 8 H, 5 R, 2 BB, 5 K)